Christian videographers recently went to the streets of New Orleans to ask people what they thought about marriage.
At a city park, they asked a little boy, "Do you want to get married when you grow up?" He opened his eyes wide and said "Yes!" A young girl told them how happy she felt when she saw her parents smile at each other as her dad left for work each morning.
It was a different story when they talked to adults in the French Quarter. A young woman told them, "[People say] it's for love, but then they divorce like five years later." One man, explaining why so many marriages fail, said, "It's because it's lust and not love."
Sounds like the kids know what marriage should be-but the adults know what it really is today. All too often, it's a mess.
Somewhere along the line, Americans lost their understanding of biblical marriage. What's left are the culture's unhealthy ideas about marital bliss—the kind we see in films, on TV, or modeled by some of our maritally-challenged neighbors.
This is why Dennis Rainey, founder of Family Life, has been holding a very successful marriage conference across the country called "A Weekend to Remember." Conference volunteers told him, "We wish we could hold these weekend getaways in all the little towns, as well."
Dennis and his colleagues asked themselves how they might package the conference in such a way as to make this happen. The result is a six-hour video conference called "The Art of Marriage," which will launch on this February 11 and 12. It features man-on-the-street interviews, humorous vignettes, testimonies by real-life couples, and solid biblical teaching.
Hundreds of groups have already signed up for the video conference—churches, homes, military bases, and businesses. Rainey says he expects some 100,000 people to take part in the video conference that weekend.
I had a chance to watch part of "The Art of Marriage," and I was dazzled. In my view, video conferences are a huge breakthrough. Not everyone has the time or money to travel to a particular location and pay for lodging and meals. So I think this "ministry in a box" idea is the wave of the future. It makes ministry inexpensive, easier to use, and easily accessible to unlimited numbers of people at the same time. We're doing the same thing in Prison Fellowship to train volunteers across the country. Focus on the Family and other good ministries are working in these same ways.
If we really want to change our culture, we need to get people meeting in small groups, learning things together.
To learn more about how you and your church group can participate in "The Art of Marriage" come to BreakPoint.org, click on this commentary, and we'll tell you how.
Marriage is under attack today as it has been at no other time in human history; we need to train hundreds of thousands of lay couples to teach our children and grandchildren what marriage is all about.
The greatest gift we could give to the next generation—including those kids in the park in New Orleans—is the means to achieve a happy, life-long, God-centered marriage.
That's why for years I've strongly supported organizations like Focus on the Family and Marriage Savers. And now comes along this excellent video conference resource by Family Life.
Find out more about these video resources at BreakPoint.org.
January 20, 2011
Chuck Colson's daily BreakPoint commentary airs each weekday on more than one thousand outlets with an estimated listening audience of one million people. BreakPoint provides a Christian perspective on today's news and trends via radio, interactive media, and print.