MANILA, Sept. 17, 2013—Amid calls for the legalization of divorce in the predominantly Catholic Philippines, a renowned chastity speaker said individual differences and incompatibilities between couples may still be addressed by simply seeking the presence of the Divine to guide and nourish the day-to-day interaction of husbands and wives.
Speaking before thousands of Filipinos during the recently concluded Real Love Revolution 2013, Catholic speaker Jason Evert said it is through keeping the traits of Christ-centeredness, sacrifice, and humility that failing marriages may be saved.
“A marriage becomes successful not because of dealing with the past, but because of seeking the virtues of Christ to deal with incompatibilities…Just trust God and do not enter into a relationship looking for the love that only He can give,” Evert said.
The Philippines is the only country in the world—apart from the Vatican—without a divorce law.
Giving tips on individuals who are still on the stage of seeking their lifetime partners, Evert said they just have to focus on nourishing their faith and it will lead them to the right person.
“Instead of running around looking for your future husband, run toward God, and after a while of running, look who is running right beside you because that is the type of person God wants you to end up with…Trust me, God will answer your prayers in the best way,” he added.
“Just be the woman of your dreams and you will attract the man of your dreams. Instead of worrying to find the perfect man, become the perfect woman and let him come find you,” he said.
Season of friendship
Evert said that immediately venturing to the courtship stage is not ideal for it is better to start a relationship with the “season of friendship” where individuals will just naturally get to know each other without getting overtly conscious of how they act in front of the other.
“How do we really live this out in this kind of relationship? Take your time before you jump into it…(you will uncover a new discovery as time passes by) so long as you take the wisdom of taking time to know,” Evert said.
He reminded people, especially the young ones, not to be too aggressive in experiencing love for it is best to get to know each other deeply before entering into any serious form of commitment.
“These things don’t need to be intense so fast…Just take your time,” he added.
“During the season of friendship, watch how (the guy) treats the women he lives with. Watch how he treats his mother and sisters because how he treats them, that is how he will [treat] the woman that he lives with,” Evert said.
“If he treats them with contempt, with disrespect, that is his idea of womanhood. Even if he treats you like a queen, look more sensibly on how he treats the women under his own roof,” he noted.
Evert then encouraged males to treat females with respect, and not as mere objects of lust and inferiority.
“We should look within our own hearts and see whether or not (females), who has been entrusted to us as a sister in humanity, are not in our hearts to become an object of adultery…Am I looking at women the way I ought to look at them, thinking about them, and talking about the way they deserve to be talked about?” he said.
During this season of friendship, Evert reminded individuals to assess the characteristics and traits possessed by the opposite sex in an objective manner.
“(For males, think about) what really draws me to this girl? Does she have virtue? Does she bring out the best in me? What makes her awesome? To do this, sometimes you have to step back and look at things objectively,” he said, noting the same for females.
Men as relationship initiators
Evert also emphasized the role of males as initiators of a relationship, adding that it is a natural calling that must not be feared.
“Men are called to initiate love, but we sometimes fail to do it. Instead, we initiate lust, or sometimes, we initiate nothing,” he said.
“Man should act decisively. Don’t be an indecisive wimp hoping for an apparition. Just trust in God and pop the question. We are called to face the fear of rejection…a man is out of place if he’s passive,” he added.
Noting the difference between the physical composition of the brains of males and females, Evert said it is through patience and understanding that couples may successfully surpass their individual differences.
“Brains are incredibly different between men and women…Between the two hemispheres of the brain—left and right—there are connective nerve fibers of the corpus callosum. Women literally have millions of connecting fibers between the two hemispheres of their brain,” Evert said.
“When men argue, they just use half of their brain to argue. While the connectivity of the women’s brain allows her to unite an emotion with a memory or an image and verbalize it,” he added.
According to him, an average adult woman speaks about 20,000 words per day compared to an adult man who only speaks an average of 7,000 words per day. He added that this difference explains why most women tend to be more emotional compared to males. He noted that since males talk less, females always feel the need to define the relationship to feel assured.
Keeping it pure
Evert added that it is important to establish close connection with in-laws for they are important individuals who would undeniably be part of the couple’s married life.
“Bring the family to the equation. If you don’t, if you sneak around behind the family’s back and hope it is going to last forever, one day it is going to come to the surface. The longer it has been hidden, the greater the resentment will be for your dishonesty,” he said.
Keeping the relationship pure, simple, and not dwelling in the past is also a way to ensure the success of a relationship, Evert noted.
He added that protecting a loved one from one’s own selfishness and lust is also needed for marriage to succeed.
“Maybe you made mistakes in the past, but the beauty is that you can start over. In order for a relationship to be pure, we have to die [within] ourselves,” he said.
“If we can serve each other in purity and love, it will always strengthen our relationship,” he added. (Jennifer Orillaza)