Abuse of the marriage covenant

Here’s a great marriage vow:

“I will be with you, no matter what happens to us and between us.  If you should become blind tomorrow, I will be there.  If you achieve no success and attain no status in our society, I will be there.  When we argue and are angry, as we inevitably will, I will work to bring us together.  When we seem totally at odds and neither of us is having needs fulfilled, I will persist in trying to understand and in trying to restore our relationship.  When our marriage seems utterly sterile and going nowhere at all, I will believe that it can work and I will want it to work and I will do my part to make it work.  And when all is wonderful and we are happy, I will rejoice over our life together, and continue to strive to keep our relationship growing and strong.” ~~ Elizabeth Achtemeier

I don’t know how different it is from the usual “for better for worse, till death do us part” Church vow. But when we say the marriage vow in Church, we are literally saying our spouses are supposed to love us “no matter what” and always find us beautiful or handsome, no questions asked. Of course, that’s the essence of the marriage vow.

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But sometimes we take advantage of that binding agreement and just let ourselves go intentionally in so many ways. We go like, oh how great it feels that we’ve just signed a contract that binds the other person to us for their whole life and nothing, except sexual infidelity, can save their skin! Sweet! Now I can relax, for every bad action or inaction of mine as long as it is not infidelity, should technically be coped with, endured and at best forgiven. Per the vow or covenant we’ve just entered into, everything is allowed as long as it does not border on infidelity…Hurray!

I vowed to love you “no matter what” so now you are at liberty to take your looks for granted! You can now just let yourself eat all the junk foods ever made, grow fat and out of shape. Oh, he should just understand that I’m now a mother and childbirth, raising children, taking care of him and all that just makes many a woman get out of shape. She should just understand that the ever-increasing responsibilities, stressful nature of my job, late night eating and all that just makes many a man develop a pot belly. Just understand and accept it as it is…so I wouldn’t have to put in any effort.

The deed is done, you have now taken the “no matter what” vow, so you can now stop giving much attention to your physique and every other thing as you used to and just corner your partner with the “no matter what” attitude whenever he/she raises a concern. Just remind him/her of the “no matter what” vow they took so they can stop whining about things you feel you cannot change. You think that’s a really safe zone? How sweet!

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Well, these and many others are the sentiments/frustrations shared by many. Problem is too many people treat marriage as a place of arrival, acceptance and comfort; a kind of destination that they arrive at and then everything else in terms of effort stops. People don’t put as much effort into bettering themselves in marriage like they did in the dating phase. After all, if it’s Christian, it never should be broken on any other grounds, right? And then upon that, if you are a man, you are allowed to force your wife into subjection no matter all the ills you do, right? How sad. That’s how God wants it?

“It is so easy to take a spouse for granted, and to take intimacy for license. We can subconsciously think since we’re married, I don’t have to be careful to be polite. We have to love each other regardless, so I can just speak without thinking about how it is perceived” ~~ Shaunti Feldhahn

Right after marriage, many people begin to take so many things for granted. The problem is not the reality that the “no matter what” covenant marriage puts us in. The problem is to be a Christian yet hide consciously or unconsciously behind that and not put in any effort to better anything. I think that is a way of dishonoring your partner and your marriage and making God look stupid for instituting marriage and giving ground rules. Nothing must be taken for granted in marriage. Marriage (and all that comes with it) should not put an end to personal development. We must not pick up a habit of putting our spouses through the “no matter what” test, especially when it is something we can make the effort to change for the betterment of the union.

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The caution is that sometimes it becomes too late to salvage anything and we must not let ourselves get to that point. And I hope it is the Bible that said:

“Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin”
~~ James 4:17

 

© Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

Marriage & Personal Development Author

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Image source: www.federalna.ba

Every girl lives for her wedding day

​”Every girl lives for her wedding day”???

Well, embrace your wedding day…prepare for it, celebrate it.

But after that few hours of fame, the spotlight on you will be gone forever…and the real work starts.

What’s scary?

Truth: “the first year of marriage is hard…really hard“.

And it’s even more when you don’t work at marrying somebody with similar goals, dreams and passions but rather in pursuit of the “soul mate” fantasy.

If only we (especially ladies) will think and prepare more for the marriage as we do for the wedding… like how we make sure, and spend sleepless nights planning for nothing to go wrong, a lot will change in marriages.

Why women especially? Because they are powerful stakeholders of the home. A lot depends on them; even though running the home is an equal partnership. 

~Credit: Frank Powell

 (Edited and expanded)
©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

Parenting in the age of gender revolution and gender confusion 

​”The first and second surgeries to remove [her] testicles and penis were successful. The third surgery to transplant ovaries into her body led to serious complications. And [her] last surgery to transplant a uterus, so that the transgender woman might be able to have children, ultimately killed her”

The trans thing is growing at a fast rate and becoming very unsettling. It’s receiving so much push and publicity at a very discomforting level. Society in the name of Modernity and Human Rights is increasingly being accommodating of things that clearly should be “unacceptable”. We now have a growing number of people identifying as:

  • Homosexuals
  • Transgender people
  • Transracial people
  • Transabled people 
  • Trans-aged people 
  • Trans-species people

What’s the next big thing and where does this end?? 

 
OK, so I watched a movie recently and a guy brought a lady home and midway into the kissing and all, he realized the lady was actually “hard” down there.  You can imagine the shock and emotional trauma on his face. He told his friend who then laughed at him that per the episode described, he’s TECHNICALLY A GAY now 😂😂 

Then recently a guy was being tried in court for stabbing and killing a woman he slept with. Apparently two minutes after the sex, the woman told him she was actually born male. And the guys defense in court? He said he’s sorry but he absolutely lost it! And why wouldn’t he? 😂😂

This things are real? Wow! 

I sometimes think every responsible parent and yet to be parents must begin to shiver at the thought of the kind of society their children are going to be raised in and the overwhelming work of damage control they would need to do to keep their children sane. Imagine your little girl asking you if she can identify as a boy? 

We have a lot of work to do in teaching our children all the good stuff about their sexuality and how they should accept and embrace their God-given sexualities. And the best ways they can work through anything they seem not to like about themselves. 

And we may have to do it way earlier before they stumble on all the garbage out there. The church will not do it for us and when we wait too long, the schools and this technologically advanced age may corrupt them way beyond repair before we even begin thinking of doing damage control. 

A lady friend of ours recently said by age four (4) she will begin to give her kids thorough but well-thought-out sex education because you wait too long and you will be surprised what your kids already know. At first my wife and I laughed at the idea of them being too young but on a second thought, it’s a very cool idea. We just have to make sure all the information churned out are very age-appropriate. And surely, with all that is going on in the world, sex education for kids must surely include gender confusion education

Parents have a lot of work to do in shaping their kids’ minds before they get polluted by all that is out. 

I envisage the parenting battle is going to be harder than before in this new age of sexual revolution. And I believe would-be couples and parents must not close their eyes on starting discussions along these lines. 

Like I always say, it’s better to know what your partner thinks about something (a habit, a societal ill, etc.) before you marry them than to wait until marriage to discover. For instance, you don’t assume your partner wants kids and would want to raise them a certain way only to marry and realize he/she does not even want them in the first place or would want to raise them that way.  

And I hope by telling my children some day that I want them to be everything or whatever they want to become in life, they do not assume the impression or freedom to want to become anything trans. If they try I will very sternly tell them to look inside their pants and tell me what they see. 😂😂

But seriously, God forbid it! But I hope He also grants us wisdom in dealing with any such eventualities should they occur, because the world as we see it now, we must be prepared and keep an open mind for just anything. 
God help us all! 😂 

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

Marriage & Personal Development Author 


(PS: Share your thoughts and parenting goals with us) 

Nudity abounds in a society of lost morals

These pictures were circulated recently on social media and I’m like “why”? Why would my wife expose herself stark naked to the whole world? What will be the motivationMoney? Or you have to do it before people can be taught to appreciate their own bodies? What is posing nude for charity…what kind of charity is that? Sometimes I don’t get the message…except it is to lure people into unholy passions or for worldly fame. 

South African celebrity’s social media photo posing nude for charity

And then again I said to myself, “possibly they are not married because I can’t seem to wonder if any responsible married woman will do that just for the sake of trying to educate a section of society”. Or possibly, times have changed and we must just learn to cope with it? 😟

Photo posted on social media by Ghanaian actress

I know by including these pictures in my post, some will say I am contributing to it’s spread and indirectly helping their agenda. That’s a very fair point, I admit, but I feel obliged to so that my readers can really appreciate (or picture) what this post is addressing. So, my apologies to those who are offended by them. I am too, but had to do this last post on this issue. 

Seriously, the nudist culture (or nudism) is growing at a very fast pace and not only is it becoming a normal trend but it is being embraced or championed by even the very elite of society. I don’t have a problem with nakedness because I see myself and my wife naked every day. 😂 But, if exposing oneself stark naked on the cover of magazines and social media platforms is the only best way a dignified woman can see her beauty or embrace her sexuality or better appreciate her feminine figure, or even do some charitable work for society, then something fundamental is wrong somewhere. 

Yes, something perhaps is seriously going wrong in the minds of nudists. But maybe it’s not really their fault. Maybe it’s a human right movement problem…and the increasing pressure to accept just everything and anything as a person’s fundamental human right. Maybe it’s the mainstream media’s fault or society’s fault. When you’re well clothed, the media says nothing, not even the word “descent” is used to describe you. But when you’re nude, they say “hot and sexy body“, “gorgeous looks“, I mean all these nice descriptors. Who wouldn’t feel encouraged with these phrases? Who wouldn’t want to “break the internet” with some nudes since that’s all it is: a challenge, or competition, or a simple case of women empowerment or human rights/freedom, and nothing about questionable morals. 

With ideologies like this being pushed, what then is right and what then is wrong?

But reality is that, every man knows how a feminine figure looks like and there’s nothing else you can teach us when you expose yourselves like that, other than causing a surge in our sexual appetites and lusts. Or are men denying that the female figure is beautiful that’s why you are giving us “lessons” on appreciating the female figure through the naked displays? And for the men who do that too, are women in denial of the beauty of the male figure? 

The human body is a beautiful work of art, we know. Our stark naked portraits are gorgeous, we admit, but why not we hang them in your bedrooms? We don’t have to invite others to admire our nakedness or pay for it…I guess that’s what prostitutes do? So, how different are you then from a prostitute when you do that? Yet you feel insulted when per chance folks choose to drop the fact that you’re educated and decide to rather call you a prostitute 😂. You call that hate speech and not embracing one’s sexuality? 

How different is a learned or scholarly person who is a nudist by choice or for monetary gain from a prostitute? Isn’t there a thin line between those two? 

How can marriages and the moral fibre of society last when our young folks emulate these unmarried celebrity figures and soak in their lifestyles? Aren’t we already seeing signs of a breaking society with the rate at which our young girls who should be in school focusing on their studies are busy jumping on the nudity bandwagon and taking nude pictures of themselves, recording sex videos and sharing on social media as well as stripping on Facebook live?

Sadly, since society practically “hails” the educated adults doing it, we’re left with very little moral grounds to condemn the young ones who learn the same wrongs from the same adults they see as “role models”. When an adult who is supposed to know better does something wrong and is being praised for it and left justified, what lessons are there for the young ones not to thread the same paths? 

Nevertheless, the internet they say does not forget. One day your sons or daughters will grow and be mocked in school/community by their colleagues that their mother is a prostitute or they have their mother’s nude pictures or masturbate to their mother’s nude sexy pictures. I hope you conscientize or prepare their minds for that looming future and pray suicide does not become their option when they can’t overcome the shame of facing you in the face to report their abuses to you. 

Modesty is Godly, beautiful and rewarding

That being said, this one fact remains true: Responsible men don’t marry makeup or nakedness, they marry destiny. Let your body, breasts or vagina be the most beautiful on display on earth, a man will outgrow it. The only future or destiny he’ll see with you is a potential porn star in waiting. Perhaps today it means nothing, but his reputation in future will decide your place in his life. Where you put your self worth is how you will be valued and how lasting that value will be. 

God save His people! And I hope this blesses somebody?
“This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.  If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth” – 1 John 1:5‭-‬6 KJV

“In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother” – 1 John 3:10 KJV

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

Marriage & Personal Development Author 

Stages of marital love

Which stage of love have you reached? 

I’ll tell you mine. We’re passed the young love stage and almost now enjoying realistic love…and we gonna stay there for a long time! How cool? 😂🙈

I discovered recently that marital love passes through five stages

young love: years 1–2

realistic love: years 3–10

settled love: years 11–25

renewed love: years 26–35

inconceivable love: years 36+

But what’s important is that you make a decision to enjoy every stage of your marriage. Decide to cherish every moment. Let the beauty of your spouse always be the standard for beauty. Together, break out of the everyday routine again and again. 

Believe in and be amazed at the miracle of love, your marriage! It is the biggest adventure on earth! 

Motherhood: the most valuable profession 

A girl didn’t want to become like her mother when she grows up because all she does is cook, cook, cook and clean, clean, clean. She wanted to become the CEO of her own company and have people serve her, and her Dad was pleased with her ambitions.


Her mother was sad hearing that from her daughter and all the more sad at her husband for encouraging their daughter to look mean on her duty as a wife and mother. 

So, she gave up her duties for a few days and her daughter wrote something beautiful in the end that touched her heart. Her daughter had a change of mindset. 

She wants to become like her mum when she grows up

The lesson I picked? 

Value motherhood. And teach your daughters how to become mothers first because everything else comes down to that (Don’t read it wrong). 

Cheers! 

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

#MandelaDay 

Today’s Nelson Mandela International Day (or Mandela Day), an annual international day in honour of our legendary African leader. The man who fought for social justice for 67 years!

As the day rolls to an end, I am reminded of my visit to his house and the Apartheid Museum last year. 


Not only that, but more importantly, I am reminded of his life and to keep fighting for whatever I hold dear…like my marriage! Freedom never comes with a fight, a conscious effort to break the status quo. I’m reminded to exert as much effort into my marriage as I can…only then can I reap the benefits thereof. 

Also I am reminded of one of his quotes:

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others”

Freedom is surely coming tomorrow…

A luta continua, victória é certa! 

​Dear sexy young lady, 

We know your body is sexy and your breasts very appealing and arousing. But, if you care to know, all it takes for a breast to sag is one baby…with all due respect to mothers. So, you can keep bombarding us with all those sexy breasts and naked bodies for all we care. 
It won’t be long and marriage will happen, and then the babies will come…then we will thirst for those pictures of you, those very ones that you refuse to wear brassieres and just expose the “things” like that, and those full body unclad ones that show your smooth wrinkle-free and stretch-marks-free bellies, thighs and butts; and we will see if they will still trickle in 😂. 

Especially when we know you can’t afford like the celebrity role models you are copying “left right front back center”, the silicone implants or the average surgeon’s fees associated with breast augmentation, which is about $3,700, not including anesthesia, surgical facility fees, breast implants, and other expenses. 

But don’t worry if you don’t want to stop showing us your sweet sexy body and “private parts”. We will enjoy the sights, cheer you on and make you feel like we love you and would marry you. And if we are lucky, you will give yourself to us to sleep with as many times as we want, and all the while making you feel under the impression that we’re dating you for marriage. 
But when we are really ready for marriage, we know what we are looking for. We are looking for, and to marry women whose interest is in managing the home and not in showcasing their bodies all over the place. We judge your maturity and your being a “marriage material” by that “high standard”. You of course attract us with the boobs, the butts, and bikini things you constantly throw into our face all over the social media space; but that only attracts and gets our lust and sex cravings super up there. Unfortunately for you, it’s never enough when we are in for the serious business of marriage and lifelong relationship. Our wives can open their legs to us, give us free access to their bodies, and do all the things we see you throw out there…and still offer us a million more value added service. You see your life? 😂😜 

But even if you decide you will never marry, how long will you show your stuffs and we won’t eventually get tired of it? 5 years? 10 years? Lol. Those same appealing and appetizing breasts you are flaunting and letting loose today will surely sag tomorrow and become unappealing to the same people that cheered you on and gave you a million likes on social media. Even if they won’t sag through childbirth, they will by the natural process of ageing. Why, you won’t age? It’s only succulent now, but it won’t be forever…every man knows that. 😂  

And whether you like it or not your stretch marks and loose skin will surely come one day. Nature will always have it’s way. 

Worse scenario, we will move on to the younger likes of you. And you will know you have expired and wasted your youthfulness. 
Sex sells, sure! And fame through indecent exposure is good too, no worries. But marriage and raising a family is more valuable and fulfilling. Ask any man. No matter how beautiful and sexy you are, when that reality hits you, you will wonder why all those men left your sexy and beautiful self to marry those less beautiful than you.  

All the best! 😂

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2017

Marriage & Personal Development Author 

Unmarried sex and pregnancy

Just “misguidedly” get pregnant without being married and you will know whether the church that claims it loves you or everybody (sinners included) really do. If they don’t call you names, shame you, roll eyes at you like angels…come back and tell me. The church has a history and statistics in that area.

 

The same people that will treat you in church like dirt when your sins or “shortcomings” come to the open, are the same people who indulge in secret sins…some more grave than yours. It’s simple…the church’s attitude screams “do it but don’t get caught”; hide it as much as you can, otherwise you are in for trouble.

 

That is why the ones who get pregnant and immediately marry as “damage control” are more “accepted” by the church than the ones who unfortunately don’t. Trust me, when a church leader gets somebody pregnant, you can bet that the church will encourage and support him to immediately marry her. In that situation, the Church is OK with applying the Exodus 22:16 scripture to support the action [Read old post on that scripture here: Fornication…]. They will do everything possible to clean the mess of a church leader from getting into the public domain. We’ve seen, heard, and read of it countless times. But let the tables turn and a mere church member get tangled in same situation. You will see a different scripture and modus operandi being applied or enforced. Let a church elder or Pastor’s child get in the same mess as a mere member and just watch how both situations will be handled. The church cares more about protecting the image of its leaders and their household than the image of its members.

 

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When we say there is no fairness or equality in the church and can never be, people say we are just “fault finders”. Well, whatever it is, some of us choose to live with the simple principle that when you raise your expectations of church, just like anything else, you risk getting hurt. So, just do Christ; don’t do Church.

 

The church as a human setting is full of judgmental people. Period! If you don’t want to be judged and discriminated against, don’t go to church; otherwise, keep an open eye and open mind and expect the worse to sometimes happen. It’s simple…the church preaches forgiveness and repentance but judges and shames “saved” people who fall back into certain sins! Just accept it because it’s the truth everywhere. Some sins are pardonable, others are not…and by now you should know where the sin of unmarried pregnancy falls. The church treats it as an abomination, a detestable thing that is deserving of hate…and not love. If you can deal with it, stay. If you can’t, leave and find solace where your soul will get the peace it needs. Your destiny is not tied to a church, it’s tied to Christ.

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But truth for me is, no child should be treated as an abomination whether conceived in wedlock or out of wedlock. Sadly, the church will rather be happier you secretly kill or abort a child and come back to the front roll next Sunday and shout “glory hallelujah” as if nothing happened. But a church that makes you see a “child from a forgivable act” as an abomination should not be a good environment for you and your child. You may not like it but whether you do or not, nobody goes to or stays at a place where they are disliked. Well, I wouldn’t.

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Nobody says churches should encourage promiscuity, sin or wrongdoing. Whether they think shaming people deters others from same acts; or accepting, loving and supporting them encourages others into same acts…whichever way they look at it, the ultimate should be doing what Jesus would have done. No good parent teaches or encourages his/her children to be promiscuous, but when they go wayward (because one can never rule out that possibility, even God or Jesus wouldn’t), what do good parents do?

 

Nonetheless, whatever the failings of the church, may God grant grace that we flee fornication so we would not have to deal with all the negatives of unmarried pregnancies.

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© Mark Gadogbe (McApple)

Marriage & Personal Development Author

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