In life today young people are greatly influenced by their elders examples and look to the older generation to see what exactly a marriage is and how to get there. Unfortunately divorce is very common today and the less examples of a happy, stable marriage that is shown, the more ill-equipped couples getting married today will be in their own marriages.
So how do we prepare young men and women for marriage? How can we not only influence our own children and family but those outside of our religion as well to view marriage as a sacred and worthwhile goal?
According to the text in 'Successful Marriages and Families' "There are certain personal characteristics or traits that happily married spouses have developed...... that began to get developed during adolescence and young adulthood. Scholars have found that young adults' readiness for marriage is largely determined by their ability to love and communicate".
What this means is that the responsibility is on us, the married couples of the world, to show the next generation how we communicate that love, how important marriage is to us. Regardless of how many bad or broken marriages there may be, we all have the power to influence others by our example. We are friends, neighbors, teachers, and associates. We can show love to our spouse through a thoughtful comment when your child's friend is over playing, or we can post a loving act of service on social media. These are very different ways to be an example, but all are needed if we are to put a positive example out to the world of love and marriage.
The path to marriage starts with us and the kind of person we can be. We cannot add to another's life either in marriage or by example, if we do not have a testimony of God. Jeffrey R. Holland said,
"Do you want capability, safety, and security in dating and romance, in married life and eternity? Be a true disciple of Jesus. Be a genuine, committed, word-and-deed Latter-day Saint. Believe that your faith has everything to do with your romance, because it does. You separate dating from discipleship at your peril".
As I said, I saw good and bad examples of communication in a marriage. Fortunately I saw enough good things combined with my own testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that I desired to get married to a kind and loving man that would honor, respect and love me.
I now feel an obligation not only to my husband, but to society as a whole to be an example and show others what a wonderful thing a marriage can be.