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Linda Kracht discusses the importance of investing in our efforts and prayers in happy, holy marriage.

Any wound, but not a wound of the heart! Any wickedness, but not the wickedness of a woman! ... There is no poison worse than that of a serpent, no venom greater than that of a woman. (Sirach 25:13,15)


Sirach, whose writings are allegorical, is referring back to the Original Sin committed in the Garden of Eden. Eve was the first to eat the forbidden fruit, and she then invited Adam to follow suit.

Another opinion on the relationship between man and woman and even Original Sin is offered by St. Paul:

Therefore, just as through one person sin entered the world, and through sin, death, and thus death came to all, inasmuch as all sinned — just as through one transgression condemnation came upon all, so through one righteous act acquittal and life came to all. (Romans 5: 12,18)


In other words, the bad and the ugly was over-come by our all-loving God. And that is our hope when we search for Truth in all the right places.  

Original sin left its deepest blight on marriage, and the Bible has much to say about relationships. No longer are the descendants of our original parents free to love each other authentically: freely, fully, faithfully, forever, and fruitfully. And so we need God’s help, otherwise we wound each other’s hearts—in large and small ways. And even then, we often choose to inflict wounds that seem to rise up from goodness knows where. Maybe our own parents’ marriage failed to teach us what authentic love should look like; maybe we made too many false assumptions along the way; maybe we followed groupthink which teaches that love is for the taking of others rather than of giving to others. Whatever the cause, the result is the worst of all wounds for the heart.  

Online "fix my marriage" bloggers try to help, but, in my opinion, the issues are generally too deep and too complicated to be fixed by Dear Abby or other well-meaning self-help columnist. They cannot possible have all the facts from the person asking for help—and for a wide variety of reasons. Wounded hearts often fail to reveal all the facts for reasons involving shame, feeling stupid, and so on. Friend-to-friend advice may also be unhelpful if all of the facts aren’t laid out—and who can possibly do that in brief conversations? Wounded persons may even fail to recognize the depth of their own wounds as they pass over issues in an effort to appear less vulnerable or pathetic to their friends. In reality, we have to be vulnerable and pathetic when spelling out our problems.  




Marriage is an art. Most of our paintings are amateur at best. Masterpieces require an authentic surrendering of self to God and His helpers, who often include well-trained, professional spiritual and marriage counselors who know how to listen, how to flesh out the issues, and how to talk about them. Chances are slim that authentic help for wounded hearts comes from opinion-makers (like Dear Abby or myself).  

Today’s marriages are in trouble for many different reasons. Most of us have bitten from the apple that slowly infuses us with poisonous vice while stripping away virtue—bite by bite. For example, many married couples may not know that pornography addiction is one of the top reasons why marriages fail today. Also, the lack of arming ourselves with virtue has allowed many other addictions to destroy marriages, faithfulness, and love. 

If you feel you are in crisis, visit FaithfulAndTrue.com. Their resources and reading materials are great. Their best book (in my opinion) is The Seven Desires of Every Heart by Mark and Debra Laser. In the Bible, the Book of Psalms is an incredibly uplifting book for any person who feels distressed or wounded—for whatever reason.  

Marriage is an art. Most of us amateurs dabble at the trade of love, though we really don’t know what we need. Many couples are tricked into thinking that excellence at marriage isn’t a required skill. It’s the old Adam and Eve trick all over again. These couples will eventually experience problems wherein the seven desires of their hearts aren’t being met. Collisions between two wounded people can be catastrophic, but they don’t have to be. Wounded hearts can be a call for help. Either we do it His way or our way. God wants us to learn authentic love one step at a time with His grace and help—and with the help of human professionals who recognize their own need for God’s grace and help before learning how to help the rest of us. May God bless us with wisdom when we are asked for advice from a friend.  


Click to tweet:
Many couples are tricked into thinking that excellence at marriage isn’t a required skill. #CatholicMom


This Lent, I suggest that we fast for the sake of building up happy, holy marriages. The following is a true short story. A priest friend of ours was flying during Lent (when meals were served on nearly all flights). He declined the meal explaining to the steward that he was fasting for Lent. His seatmate heard his comment and told him that she was also fasting—but for the destruction of marriages. Shocking though it was, it motivated Father to ask many, many people since then to offer up any form of fasting for the renewal of holy, happy marriages in their diocese. 



Copyright 2024 Linda Kracht
Images: Canva