A few years later we welcomed Noah, Sarah's little brother, who she used to call "nunnie baby". He too was a blessing and a joy to hold.
I loved these children, and many more which came into our lives through family and friends. These kids seemed to instinctively feel comfortable with me and my brothers, especially my giant younger brother Colin. He was their champion as he towered over other adults, yet somehow, he seemed to fit in better whilst playing with the little ones.
Even years later with the welcome of my older brother's children the gift of being their "champion" was still present. They used to attach themselves to our legs and demand to be held which we were more than willing to comply. I was smitten by them. I loved these tiny new additions to our family with all my heart. We patiently waited with expectant joy to meet these lifeforms the nights they were born with what I can only describe as love at first site (as well as gratitude to God for everyone's safety and well-being), followed by a strange and unique instinct to protect and nurture.
I referred to these instincts as "the Uncle gene", which also served to remind me that I too possessed the desire to have children of my own someday. I wanted my nephew and niece to have cousins, my parents to have grandchildren, and our family to grow; but first I would have to find a suitable and worthy wife.
By this time I was in my late 20s, I had finished school, and I was enjoying success in my career. By all accounts I should have been getting ready to settle down and get married...
In my parents generation, known as the "baby boomers', this was the social blue-print. Boomers were named accordingly because during my father's birth, the world was at war and many men were sent off to fight whilst women back home entered the work force for the very first time in generations. When the men returned home after the war, there was a 'boom' or surge in the population of babies being born, which in time would grow to become the parents of the post war generations. This phenomenon forever changed the dynamic between men and women. Now, instead of the traditional nuclear family, which derives its name from objects orbiting around a nucleus, a new family took its place.
My father left his home in India to achieve an education here in the United States so that he could acquire a job which would allow him to provide for a family. This separated him from his peers back home in India which made him a more attractive prospect to women like my mother who longed for an attractive husband, with good character, and could provide for a better life (which America promised). Now, in exchange for 'this better life' my mom had to also be attractive to my father, a woman of good character, and possess the potential to have healthy children. The choice to marry had to be mutually beneficial. This was the old world social contract, an implicit agreement that was bound through holy matrimony.
Today, nearly 80 years after the last World War, the face of the earth has changed. No longer does the work force discriminate between male and female. Both sexes are equally eligible to become 'wage slaves' to the global economy. Instead of men competing with other men and women competing with other women for mates, now both sexes battle everyone in a latent 'divide and conquer' war strategy. The previous social contract has been overwritten with entitlements, impermanence, and whimsical renegotiation. The nuclear family has been smashed into atoms with collateral damages in the form of abortions, unchastity, infidelity, divorce, and abandoned children. We have become a spoiled generation of "baby sacrificers".
War is one of the tools used to accomplish the Devil's work of death and destruction.
Today a different kind of war rages on. The war of the sexes. When negotiating the marriage market place, both sons and daughters are given equal opportunity to achieve an education, to acquire employment, and to start a family; however, remnants of the aeons of human evolution linger on in our consciousness. There are no longer clearly defined social contracts since men and women have become competitors in the work force.
Both must compete in school to acquire jobs, that will garner them the attentions of a prospective mate. Thousands of years of evolution have trained men to seek out partners that are: attractive (good genes), good character (faithful and non-abusive), and able to have healthy children (fertility); whilst evolution has trained women to seek out partners that are: attractive (both physically and mentally), good character (able to honor their commitments), and have status (the ability to provide access to wealth, protection, and security).
Both men and women have similar criteria for mate selection; however, the last criterion fundamentally changes how the two sexes approach mating. Men seek youth and fertility whilst women seek security and status; each party is gatekeeper to that which the other desires.
Men usually start off with low status as they must acquire experience, knowledge, and maturity which takes time to develop in order to compete with more developed peers.
Women tend to command the mating market when they are younger while more men compete for their attention before the mating pool begins to dwindle. Poor mate selection in the past often meant unplanned pregnancy, single parenthood, forfeited ability to conceive, low social status or poverty, and possible death from labor complications.
Post-war social conditioning has young women squandering their most fertile years whilst competing with men in universities and afterwards in the work force. The fertility window for most women to select meaningful partners is between the ages of 18-33. Women who waste these precious years on men who will not offer commitment, schooling, jobs, and careers often find themselves out of options when it comes time to settle down.
While both men and women are busy achieving professional success, men looking to settle down can leverage their higher status to look for youthful women to start families with while forgoing their same aged female counterparts.
Men used to get married in order to have access to sex while women would only grant access to sex after receiving some form of commitment (i.e. marriage).
I believe the real reason to enter matrimony is to welcome children into the most stable two parent household as possible. This will give the child or children the best chances of success in life.
Post-war social behavior now observes men and women having meaningless relationships, which lead to fractured marriages, and more heartbreak for future generations. Marriage is in decline. Divorce has evened out at a little above 50%. Birth rates are the lowest in 40yrs (here in the US).
Men complain women defile themselves sexually with attractive men who never commit to them, only to seek out the commitment of less attractive, but 'good' men only after they've squandered their youth and fertility.
"After she's had her fun, now she wants a share in the comfortable life I've worked hard to build... What's the point of marriage?", these men ask.
Women's complaints are manifold. They claim some men use them for sex and abandon them shortly after (which sounds like poor decision making ability and a victim-mentality to me). They also complain that men are not good enough, since both sexes can work and make incomes for themselves. Women tend to 'marry up' which means that prospective partners who are less educated and/or earn less income than them are not economically attractive mates (as good or better!). These women might still go to bed with such men; however, they generally will not marry them. When it comes to marriage, men do not usually care about a woman's earning potential or education as youth and beauty seems to be most important overall.
Post-war advances in technology such as birth control, appliances such as the microwave oven, washing machines, and the internet have helped to facilitate a world in which we can no longer depend on having a partner. Each of the sexes can now afford to have the benefits* of marriage, without the expensive cost of it.
This means men can now have access to sex through the internet or meaningless affairs which might cost little as compared to a wife or divorce. Women can receive commitment from short term relationships with multiple men, their employer, through government social welfare programs, and even other women.
*Everyone seems to have a reduced benefit sold to them as a bargain. A Microwave dinner versus a Home-cooked meal.
The nucleus of the nuclear family no longer revolves around God, Father, and Mother. Instead it worships and revolves around "the self".
"You will not surely die," the serpent told her. For God knows that in the day you eat of it, your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
Our ancestors have eaten the forbidden fruit and under the claim of equality (to be like God, for women to be like men, and men submitting to women in sin), daughters despise their husbands, and son's their wives. We are not equals but complements, and both ought to have humility and obedience to listen to God Our Father. Today, all of us must work. Instead of serving our earthly masters, or ourselves, we can choose to prioritize a Heavenly Creator who was willing to sacrifice preciousness for us. That is true love!
For me, when navigating this difficult terrain I have decided to once again turn to prayer. It has always been a source of comfort and guidance.
Jesus once said, "No one can have two masters. You will either love one and hate the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. No one can serve both God and money."
When I cannot tell which path to choose, which direction is best, which party to vote for, I can always rely on the Lord God. This is my prayer...
Dear Lord, thank you for the sacrifice of your Son. Thank you for my many blessings. Thank you for my family, friends, and our healthy children. Lord, you know everything that is, was, and is to come. You know my heart and its desires, but Your will be done and not mine. Please continue to be with me and all those who are suffering in these difficult times with small signs of your loving presence so that we may know which path to choose. Help us to repent and refocus on You so that by your saving grace we may have a share in your Heavenly Kingdom as adopted children. Amen.