“The family that prays together stays together” is something I believed in my youth, and it was a saying I clung to as my own family came into being. These days that assertion is implied again and again in the television ad: “Find God’s match for you-Christian Mingle.” So singles, and possibly discontented married, are told the Creator has predetermined a soul-mate for them.
Wouldn’t that be nice--to know that there was someone out there with God’s stamp of approval for you--in this time when incompatibility and sometimes emotional and physical abuse of spouse and children suffer from separated or divorced parents?
This ad poses questions that even the naïve should ask, such as:
--If God already had it figured out a match for you, why do you need a dating service?
--If God knows who is a match for you, why not skip dating and engagement and jump right in to the bliss of a God-blessed union rather than risk a God-damned unhappy coupling?
--If an all wise God has a match for you, why not for everyone because that would prevent so much pain?
--If God has a match stored up for you, she, he or it must be very busy with over seven billion souls out there longing for the best there is for them?
--If God cares so much, isn’t it amazing that my match is located near where I live and not on the opposite side of the planet?
--If God has it all planned, do I have any “say” in it and how can I know if my preference might be wrong?
--If God knows best, you and I don’t need any sex education or contraceptive know-how, do we?
--If God has a match for me, dare I mingle with non-Christians, as we are told Jesus did with Mary Magdalene?
Pardon me, God, for raising these questions. I’m sure you don’t approve of doubt. However the facts are not so good, God. Research has shown that he highest divorce rates are in the Bible Belt--roughly 50 percent above the national average of 4.2/1000 people whereas in northeast states divorce rates are lower, averaging just 3.5/1000 people. Other researchers have also found that atheists and agnostics divorce less often than other religious groups. See: http://atheism.about.com/od/atheistfamiliesmarriage/a/AtheistsDivorce.htm
So, God, somehow, maybe you didn’t have a match for me and that’s why I had to figure out who could love me and I could love and care for.