As I said in an earlier post, there are countless reasons to move to Bloomington and come to Indiana University. Naturally, many of those reasons will have to do with your career development. You are at IU, after all, because you are interested in a certain field of study and hope to be gainfully employed in that field at some point. But in this post, I want to convince you to think about something else entirely. I want to convince you to think about marriage.
I suspect that your freshman orientation did not cover what to do if you want to get married while at IU. It’s a safe bet that none of your conversations with classmates, administrators or professors in the first couple weeks of the semester touched on marriage at any point. Some crazy people may choose to get married while enrolled as undergrads at IU, but it’s considered unadvisable.
That may all sound perfectly normal and reasonable to us, but we have to realize that we are a product of our times. Our ancestors would consider us very strange, and I believe our children will, too. Marriage considered as an afterthought for thousands of young, single men and women who live, work and play together every day for years? It’s just crazy.
But it’s much worse than that, actually. College has taken quite a few hits in the PR department in recent years, but it is still considered to be the ticket to upward mobility. Anything that threatens that upward mobility, such as marriage, is seen as an enemy which must be eliminated. And so, young men and women enter young adulthood knowing for certain that they must not consider marriage until they have received their diploma. Women, in particular, aren’t to think about children (talk about ruining your chance at upward mobility!) until they are firmly established in their careers. The irony here is that Christian parents are just as likely to put pressure on their children to put off marriage as non-Christians.
This is insanity. The absolute best time to get married and have children is while you are young, not when you are in your mid-thirties. Your choice of a husband or wife will matter far more than your choice of which college to attend or which career to pick.
The sexual revolution in the sixties promised to liberate sex from the confines of marriage between a man and a woman. It also preached that the sex act has no necessary connection to babies. These terrible lies have destroyed many, but they continue to be the main curriculum at Indiana University. Alfred Kinsey famously said that the only unnatural sex act is one which you cannot perform. That statement won’t be found in the syllabus for any class at IU, but I believe it expresses the ethos of the institution.
So how do you prepare for something as quaint as marriage at a place like Indiana University?
For starters, be pure. The leaders of the sexual revolution lied. There is no such thing as “free love” or “free sex”. Serial, casual sexual relationships are not only a hazard to your health, they are a cancer to your soul. Don’t look at pornography. Prepare your heart and mind to be with one woman or one man for the rest of your life.
Come to church. Surround yourself with others who know they are sick and need to be made well by the Great Physician. Find a young man who is serious and willing to work his tail off for you. Find a young woman who is willing to be your help mate.
Learn what it means to embrace the beautiful, God-given distinctions between male and female. Don’t oppose them, roll your eyes at them or dismiss them. Instead, study them. Delight in them.
Think about the joy of welcoming a little baby into your home one day! As the father of seven with one on the way, let me say it again: you want to start that while you’re young! If you’re willing to work hard and walk by faith, you’ll never regret it.
Daylight is burning, my brother. Ask the girl out!