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In 1888, a record was set in America for divorces: 29,000. The population was 60 million. That’s 1 divorce per 2,000 people. Today, there are 2.4 million divorces annually in a population of 328 million: 1 divorce per 136 people EACH YEAR. For African countries like Nigeria, for example, in February 2020, it was said that over 4,000 divorce cases were filed before various courts in the country’s Capital, that is, FCT, Abuja. Within two months in 2020! Unbelievable! This reality is enough to break down any society because broken marriages, homes, and families inevitably result in the break down of the society in question, because the family institution is the primary unit of every societal reality. Before a divorce, there was a marriage. Before a marriage, there was dating/courtship/love relationship. It was the same set of people who started out as lovebirds that filed for divorce. This is saddening. In a constantly confused and confusing world, any careful and objective mind must have grown tired of the nonsense surrounding love relationships and marriages, and would strongly despise the counterproductive narratives that are so common these days, which contribute a whole lot to the increasing rate of failed love relationships and marriages. The heartbreaks; the depression; the giving up on love due to past experiences despite desiring a true love relationship; the uncertainty about what to expect before going into a love relationship; the subjection to multiple love relationships in the hopes of finally knowing whom one wants to settle for; the regular visits to relationship or marriage counselors; and many more real issues. The ever increasing consequences borne out of failed love relationships despite the very many relationship materials available, along with the realities of many who have reached out to Felix Odofin for counsel and advice regarding these relatable issues, has driven him to address these issues in a direct, blunt and concise manner in THE DARK HORSE OF LOVE RELATIONSHIPS; the kind of advice one gets from a parent, brother, sister, or friend who shows you tough love by not sugarcoating anything but telling you the truth that many will either not tell you or will adulterate it in order not to hurt your feelings. Felix Odofin sought to “hurt the reader’s feelings” with loving truth so that they turn out well as opposed to not “hurting the reader’s feelings” and allowing them fall into a ditch. He takes it for granted that we all understand the importance of having people with this mindset around us.
In my over six decades of life, I have observed with concern why many marriages contracted under the Christian principles and between professed believers in Christ either ended up in separation, divorce, or, are just being endured, even when happiness had long taken its leave in the home. Adeniji (1994) says: “Your success or failure in marriage depends largely on you and it is right counsel you are admonished to follow because it is a way to happy married-life”1. The questions begging for answers are: whether the couples involved are Christians indeed; do they believe that the Bible is God’s word to be obeyed; and as rules for living in His kingdom? Do they know what marriage really is from God’s perspectives and his expectations from parties involved in the institution? Were they ready for the demands of marriage and what their expectations are from the union? As a growing youth in my beloved church, I had good fellowship and interactions with married couples, which enabled me to have a feel of what goes on within many professed Christian homes. With openness, many discussed with me deep emotional marriage problems they were going through, with the expectation that I could help proffer some solutions. I was not married then, so I had limited storage of experiences to share with them apart from basic biblical injunctions. To the glory of God, I got married thirty nine (39) years ago and can comfortably share from this largess.