The Importance of Continence in Marriage

The Challenge of Marriage

Marriage, as an institution, presents its fair share of challenges. It is by no means an effortless endeavor, as anyone who has experienced it can attest. This complex journey demands not only prudence and careful consideration but most importantly, divine guidance from Almighty God, primarily sought through prayer.

The difficulties inherent within the bonds of matrimony are undeniable. However, it’s vital to remember that the Creator Himself established the laws governing marriage. In the words of Scripture, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:6, Douay–Rheims Bible). This profound statement underlines the sanctity and seriousness of the marital vow, emphasizing that the challenges faced are not without divine foresight and purpose.

The Possibility of Continence

The concept of continence within marriage often sparks debate. Is it truly attainable within this sacred union? The answer is a resounding yes. Continence is not only attainable but also necessary in certain circumstances, such as when a spouse is ill or during the delicate period associated with childbirth. In these situations, a spouse is called to exercise self-control and fidelity.

This notion aligns with the biblical principle found in 1 Corinthians 7:5: “Defraud not one another, except, perhaps, by consent, for a time, that you may give yourselves to prayer; and return together again, lest Satan tempt you for your incontinency.” Here, St. Paul acknowledges the challenges of marital continence but also emphasizes its importance and attainability, particularly as a means to strengthen the spiritual bond between spouses.

Embracing the Divine Plan in Marriage

In contemplating the demands of marriage, including the aspect of continence, it’s essential to remember that we are not alone in our struggles. The divine wisdom and guidance of God are ever-present. While marriage presents its difficulties, the ability to practice continence within it is not only possible but also a testament to the sanctity of the marital union.

In times of trial, turning to prayer is paramount. Trusting in God’s laws, designed with utmost care and foresight, guides us through the intricate journey of matrimony. The Psalmist beautifully encapsulates this trust in God’s providence: “Commit thy way to the Lord, and trust in him, and he will do it” (Psalms 37:5, Douay–Rheims Bible). This encourages couples to place their marital challenges, including the practice of continence, in God’s capable hands, assuring His guidance and support throughout their marital journey.

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