As I prepared to write this I wondered why when people live together with out the covenant of marriage we call it “shacked up”, maybe because living together with out being married is like, a Shack is just thrown together with out any foundation. Marriage has a foundation because of the vows (contract) required to enter into it, also you when you get married you have a legal document showing you are bound together legally, emotionally and spiritually. When you shack up you are not legal, emotional, or spiritually bound together.
A friend recently told me he was going to buy a house to live with his girlfriend and they would get married later. Now I am not judging my friend because I lived with men in past. I figured women do it for security, and why would a man do? ( irresponsibility?)
When I was nineteen was the first time I entertained the thought of living with a man. My AA sponsor told me I should just get married because it provided more security. So I got married a few months later. We separated and after my oldest daughter was born I started living with a man that helped me care for her.
The next time I lived with a man was when I wanted to leave the homeless shelter. He was an attractive older man I had met an AA meeting. I was thrilled to live in a single family detached house. I realized that I was in his house I never felt like anything was mine. Nor did I feel responsible for any bills. I did provide grocery’s.
Now I have to admit the first two men I lived with I did want to marry. I lived with second daughter’s father, he moved in with out moving any of this stuff. I did wonder for years why Louie (Named changed for privacy) didn’t marry me.
The last time I lived with a man was during my homeless period in Atlanta. I lived with a man for a month so my oldest daughter could finish the school year and discovered the man was a drug addict. The last man was just for convenience and security.
When I look to the bible for answers about living with opposite sex, I noticed that any thing outside of traditional marriage one man and one woman was disaster. Abram married his wife’s maid Hagar and that ended in badly. Hagar and Ishmael were sent away. Next there is story about Jacob, Rachel and Leah. There is a lot to learned from them. First lesson is you can not make a man love you no matter how hard you try. The second lesson is that if a man really loves you he will wait (Sex before marriage is not necessary). Now Jacob didn’t send any body away but Joseph has a story as result.
The real story about those who were not married Samson and Delilah( If you have read Bishop Eddie L Long I don’t want to marry Delilah) and my girl, the woman at the well. Now Samson was a Nazareth. Samson fell in love with Delilah. Delilah was encouraged by the townspeople to trick Samson to reveal the secret to his strength. She had to try three times before he revealed the truth, that his strength was in his hair.
Now Delilah could be this way because she never vowed to take Samson through sickness and health. She never promised to stay with him until death do us part. There was no commitment and that is how she could betray him. Samson should have realized that because Delilah was not a godly woman she could not be trusted with his heart, his secrets, or his emotions.
Samson did not make any vows to Dehliah as a man of god. He should have walked in front of her to protect her from opposition and danger.
Now the woman at the well. She was embarrassed about her status of living with a man. She was coming to get water at an odd hour to avoid the glare of other women. When Jesus talked to her she tried to change the subject. She unlike Samson had made good choice to repent and chose life.
“ The wise woman builds her house , but wih her own hands the foolish one tears hers down ( Proverbs 14: 1)