The cross of marriage

 

Family means bearing a cross, because in a time when less and less children are born, Christian parents, and especially mothers, are taking the responsibility of bearing in their wombs babies, as a blessing of God in their lives, a gift that they need to accept as a true blessing. We can talk about a cross of giving birth, raising, schooling and teaching, a cross of parents for their children. We could name all these “the cross of maternity” “the cross of giving birth” “cross”, “care” or “attention for education” and “cross of spiritual education”.

Many times, monasticism is considered as a lifestyle much harsher than family and life in society, near our brethren. And justly, monasticism does suppose assuming evangelical votes voluntarily: chastity, obedience and poverty. Some lay people tend to believe that monastic life is easier, and salvation is more accessible to ascetics without knowing the temptations that disturb the peace and serenity of the perfection loving ascetic.

The truth is that both monasticism and family life are first of all, a matter of vocation. When you have a calling towards something, you want from the bottom of your heart to accomplish it, and no obstacle is big enough to divert you from your path. Both of these choices can be seen as bearing a cross. Actually, anything that can make a difference in the plan of Salvation, means bearing an unseen cross. Father Dumitru Stăniloae was even speaking about a cross sitting above the world. Its discovery means the understanding of man - the only rational being, to whom creation was given as a ladder leading to His discovery - of the inexhaustible internal reasoning bore inward. Not being able to see this reasoning, added to the irrational and ruthless management of the world, led by human’s own satisfaction makes this cross even harder to be borne.

Similarly, family has its own cross. First of all, it is the cross of those who accept having a family in a time when the number of marriages is languishing in favour of more “free”, “open ” bonds, without moral responsibilities, which can easily be discard at any moment have decided to choose a life companion, with whom they share both duties and responsibilities.

It is a cross because once founded, family means being able to sacrifice yourself for the sake of the well-being of their relationship, of discovering salvation through marriage and peace near the other half. Therefore, seen from this point of view, marriage means mutual sacrifice in order to achieve mutual accomplishment.

Family means bearing a cross, because in a time when less and less children are born, Christian parents, and especially mothers, are taking the responsibility of bearing in their wombs babies, as a blessing of God in their lives, a gift that they need to accept as a true blessing. We can talk about a cross of giving birth, raising, schooling and teaching, a cross of parents for their children. We could name all these “the cross of maternity” “the cross of giving birth” “cross”, “care” or “attention for education” and “cross of spiritual education”.

But, most of all, family and marriage is a tough path, of lashing struggle, because the two husbands need to fight not only their own temper, but also the wild spirit of the other, in order to uproot fornication instincts and sins, through harsh temperance.

At Judgement, each of us will give an account of our understanding of bearing the personal cross, of how we know to weight on our shoulders, equally, the cross of the family and how we helped assuming the bigger cross that is standing on the shoulders of the world.