February 7-14 marks National Marriage Week, and it provides us an opportunity to reflect on the irreplaceable value of marriage and family. 

Marriage is a sacred institution gifted to us by God, and it alone makes prosperous, well-ordered societies possible.

Unfortunately, many in our country do not understand the institution’s importance. A recent Pew Research Center poll found that only 34 percent of adults in the U.S. believe our country is better off if “people make marriage and having children a priority,” while 64 percent believe it is “just as well off if people have priorities other than marriage and children.”

While fewer Americans are getting married, we are also beginning to see the family deteriorate as more couples simply aren’t having children. In 2020, our country’s birth rate fell for the sixth year in a row and hit the lowest rate recorded. Wisconsin has been below replacement birth rate since 1974. (p. 18 of WFC’s Cultural Indicators 2019 Edition)

It’s vitally important that every American understands the value of marriage and family. No act of government can replace its role in society. Families instill children with morals, discipline, values, crucial skills, and civic virtues. They are every society’s foundational institution—by God’s good and grand design. When that foundation is weak, a society is weak. 

The traditional family unit is the bedrock of society, and the well-being of our churches, communities, state, and country is directly related to the strength of our families. Marriage was intended by God to promote human flourishing, and we suffer immensely when we deviate from His plan. 

As Christians, we have the opportunity to show the world why marriage and children are so essential and fulfilling. Our churches and families need to honor and celebrate marriages, cheer when babies are born, model strong and godly marriages, and talk positively about marriage. 

We must also elect representatives who understand the importance of marriage and family and will promote its well-being in all policies. 

Lastly, we must fight back against each societal ill that threatens the family, including rampant individualism, progressive sexual ideology, divorce, the devaluation of children, the attack on parental rights, and much more. Every attack on the family is an attack on our country as a whole. 

We have the power, and the duty, to influence the culture in a positive way and reestablish the primacy of God’s plan for the family—a man and a woman united in a lifelong, monogamous marriage relationship and the biological and/or adopted children God blesses them with.. 

Please pray for our national and Wisconsin leaders to once again cherish and value the institution of marriage and for couples to form strong, Christ-centered families. 

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