In far too many modern relationships, the only glue holding them together is the physical. There is little or no mental connection made between the man and the woman. There is little or no emotional connection made. Finally, there is little or no spiritual connection made. In order for a relationship to last-REALLY LAST-it has to have all four elements present; there have to be mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical bindings holding it together. Only then will a relationship have what it takes to last. When there's only one binding (especially when it's the physical, as is usually the case in modern relationships) holding it together, the relationship simply doesn't have the strength to withstand any serious stress.A show like Jersey Shore confirms what MM is saying. The show is sickening and sad, and yet it points to the existence of God. How so? Well, when I read MM's reaction, I notice that he mentions the "spiritual" component. Human beings can't get away from this. Jersey Shore illustrates what happens when God is not present in people's lives. The young people of that show are following verses 20 to 32 of Romans, chapter 1 to the script; and they most likely don't even know it.
God creates human beings. We create things. It's no surprise, then, that in a godless culture, we reduce people to the status of things--from the impersonal, dehumanizing environment of the workplace to the pornification of our sexual relationships. Even "love" becomes a product to be sold, negotiated for, and consumed.
Around Thanksgiving, I said the following at MM's blog in response to a post about "Game" ...
There has been a lot of talk about LTR Game but frankly I think it is overrated. The bottom line is that people are more materialistic, self-centered, into instant gratification, etc. than ever before. Young men may learn about seduction the way young women learn about dressing to the nines. But, today, the youth of either sex have extremely poor relationship skills that doom any chance of monogamy. That's why cohabitation is on the rise and marriage is in decline.Why do I bring up what I wrote? Not to criticize "Game." That's not my point. If a man wants to practice "consergame," there nothing is wrong with that, per se. I suppose it works for some people. Moreover, I am not pinning the blame entirely on women, although I believe society is arguably more lenient about their peccadilloes than those of their male counterparts. What I'm saying is that a lot of people are missing the big picture--the spiritual aspect of relationships, as God intended. When it comes to heterosexual relationships, hookups represent the bottom of the food chain. It's diving for rotting leftovers in a dixie dumpster. A God-honoring marriage is what men and women must pursue if they are thinking about intimate relationships. I do not apologize for saying that.
Relationships are just another form of recreation, a hobby, a drug, an appliance, what have you. When people get bored or dissatisfied, they just trade in their partner for a new one. The values of integrity, loyalty, industriousness, sacrifice, compromise, humility, patience, longsuffering, and selflessness that are needed for marriage are nonexistent among a huge swath of young people. That's why LTR Game is a nice theory, but in practice, it has no remedial effect in stemming the mass decay.
When people mention LTR Game, I sometimes think what they are really saying is: "I hope to get a hottie to love me forever" or "I hope to get married one day after I have all my fun." They don't realize that sleeping around is a strong predictor for relationship failures down the road.
The people of today are wanting the quick fix. And I'm afraid they see "Game" as the solution. But secret to relationship success is not "Game" per se. It's a nice component. I certainly am not against men and women making themselves sexier in the eyes of each other (within the bounds of reason, morality, and good taste). But, like I said, "Game" is not the fix.
This is the 300-pound gorilla in the room. This is what some "Game" advocates are failing to address. Relationship success in the past depended not so much on "Game" as it did on character. Today, a lot of people have an insufficient amount of character. They break their promises and think only of themselves.
In terms of male-female relationships, society especially encourages women to be completely devoid of any sense of responsibility for how their relationships turn out. The whole woman=good, man=bad paradigm has resulted in a whole generation of self-absorbed harridans that have no business getting within 100 feet of a bridal shop. So the question needs to be asked by men interested in LTRs and marriage: Why practice "Game" to attract the attention of a female demographic that is pretty sorry in the first place? And if you are a man from one of the more recent Media Saturated Generations, then you may need to consider if you are all that mature and selfless yourself. [quote edited for typos and layout]
"Love" is an abused word in this society. I'll tell you what love entails. It entails forgiving the faults and failures of a person because you made a vow "for better or for worse." You see, when you recognize the personhood of another human being, you have to recognize the whole package. You embrace that person, not just what that person can do for you. Love will demand you to sacrifice for that human being even when you are not thanked for it. Love can be a painful, thankless task, and it makes no apologies for that. This kind of love is pretty much impossible without a meaningful relationship with God, who helps us to love others (Galatians 5:22-53). It's no surprise to me. God loves those who have been constantly thankless towards him--that includes you and me (Romans 5:6-8). At some point or another, we have acted or are acting in a thankless manner towards him. So now you know what the scoop is. Read 1 Corinthians, chapter 13 and it will tell you what love is all about. Does that describe your relationships?
When someone belittles a single man as a loser, etc., the charge is usually hollow and effete. Why? Because the ones who sleep around, get into shallow relationships primarily based on status or infatuation, etc. can be just as relationship-starved and deprived of love as the man sitting at home alone on a Saturday night eating cold pizza. Don't tell me how well-fed you are if your idea of nourishment is eating Skittles all day long. Day after day, socially unattractive people fall in love and have deeper relationships than the Hollywood celebs that hop from one bed to another. Why do we envy the latter group's sad existence, then?
I daresay the kind of love I've been talking about is the kind most of my readers want, regardless of their background or whether or not they agree with my posts. But it costs something--your selfishness and your ego. When I hear the talk of some people who fancy themselves as winners in the relationship game, I can tell they are not ready for love and that they are doomed to failure if they don't clean up their act. The men and women who have been consistent, who have stuck with it for the long haul, who have gone through the peaks and valleys with their spouses, etc. do not talk so loud about their conquests. They do not gloat so much in front of others who have been unlucky in love. They usually don't yammer on about "losers who can't get laid." These men and women who have stuck it out understand the price. Love has humbled them. It makes them thankful, not arrogant. As for the ones who continue to be arrogant about their social value in eyes of the opposite sex, poetic justice will find them out and kick them in the posterior (Proverbs 16:18).
Is the heterosexual love I'm talking about worth it? Sure it is (Proverbs 18:22). Furthermore, if you are trying to live up to the vows you have taken before the Lord even when it gives no paybacks, it is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). But having said that, you should think before you leap in the first place. That's my take, folks. This culture has all sorts of ideas about love and how to get it, but like Psalm 127:1 says, "Unless the LORD builds the house, they labor in vain who build it" (NASB).