Male/female dynamics in the evaluation of an oft-married man

Male/female dynamics in the evaluation of an oft-married man

Renee EllisonMar 5, '23

[This blog post originated as a message to an elderly widow who was considering a persistent suitor.]

If there was a man who repeatedly wanted to engage you in conversation who had lived with one wife until he put her in the arms of God, laying her to a peaceful rest, after having been devoted only to her for the course of his adult life,  and had his finances in respectable order, that would be wholesome and wonderful!  I would heartily encourage it.

Consider what would be true about such a man.  He would have learned selflessness.  He would be well acquainted with curbing his own self-indulgence to live within the parameters God had set before him.  He would have intimately grown to know what it takes to make one relationship work, to make one other person happy in life, willing to do anything to make it work, not only for his wife's sake but for his children's sake, to be true to his vow, because his word is his bond.   Having his finances in order would further indicate that he understood boundaries over his own emotions.

But neither is true in the case here, with your recent caller.  The behind-the-scenes lack of character here with this man was apparently of sufficiently high voltage that his first wife will have him back under no circumstances.  He still has three wives who are alive on earth.  A fourth wife died.  "A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives" (1 Corinthians 7:39).  Under what circumstances would this ever be true, if not for this case and that case and the next case?  If they are all exceptions ...all three wives... under what circumstances would this scripture be held true?  Incompatibiiity would always be the exception?  Never does it involve a profound death to self?

And what of his choices in the first place?  What does that indicate about him?  He found women who cannot hold to their vows either?  This is a man who has been intimately involved for years and years with four different women.  You would bring a truckload of respectability to any new relationship of his...and from your own integrity you would assume that from his end.  But live just one of his days or one of his decisions and you'll see where he has really been.

This is a lonely man.  You are perhaps his one warm spot on the earth.  It is interesting that as he cast his eye over the whole earth on Thanksgiving Day he sought that warmth in your direction.  You received a phone call , a "nothing" to you, but from his end, he planned it all day.  Rolled it around like hard candy.  A man is a hunter.  To you it means nothing, but testosterone is not progesterone!  The kindest thing you could do to him is offer him a cool firm response of no.  Conversely, offering him emotional warmth could come in on your like a freight train--especially at the beginning of a vulnerable chapter.

You had a brother-in-law who, likewise, was socially smooth, a good conversationalist.  I think his wife Lou got into more than she bargained for.  Character exhibited in the past lets you know what you really are dealing with--regardless of the current seemingly refined packaging.

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