The Sweet Christian Bride

The Unthinkable

by admin on March 14, 2013 in Family, Logistics, Relationship with No Comments

Get life insurance.

What does this have to do with wedding planning, you may ask?  Technically, it has more to do with marriage planning, so if you need to wait until after the honeymoon is over to begin thinking about this, that’s more than okay.  But—spoiler alert—set a date in the near post-honeymoon future when you can talk with your husband about preparing for the inevitability of death.

Chris and I were first introduced to the importance of life insurance when we took a Crown Financial Bible Study during our engagement.  In the Bible, we see life insurance all over the place but not necessarily in the form of payments, accounts, and investments.

Life insurance in biblical times was primarily people’s children.  One of the reasons why it was so devastating when a woman had a closed womb was because there would be no one to take care of her and her husband when they were older.

Look at the story of Onan in Genesis 38:1-10.  His brother died, leaving his wife childless.  Onan was supposed to “perform the duty of a brother-in-law” (38:8) by making a child with his sister-in-law.  Otherwise she would have been widowed without anyone to care for her in old age.  Onan didn’t do this and was killed for it.

Caring for family is in line with God’s heartbeat.  Paul tells Timothy that able children need to care for their parents and grandparents who are in need, and if a family does not care for its members, that family is worse than unbelievers (1 Timothy 5:4,8).  God too tells widows in Isaiah that He is their husband (Isaiah 54) and orphans that He is their father.  God looks out for people who are without family to care for them, and we can learn from Him about that.

You and your spouse can take out a life insurance policy on each of you so the other can have some provision when one is deceased.  I would recommend consulting with a professional so that you know what kind of policy to buy.

Chris has a life insurance policy on himself that will allow me to survive modestly without ever having to work again for life.  It’s not that I am opposed to working, but my vocation is writing, which often brings in the same paycheck as if I were not working.  Chris cares deeply that I live out my vocation as a writer, and so he is preparing for me to be able to do so when he dies.

Our policy on me is for less money because Chris’ vocation is one that brings home a paycheck.  Like any spouse who grieves the loss of his loved one, however, Chris will be so utterly grieved when I die that he will need ample time away from work to be able to process through that grief.  In his business, that correlates with a loss of income, which is where the policy comes into play as a stop-gap.

It often takes a very long time for people to emerge from the grieving process.  I had a teacher once tell me that no one can ever tell someone that he has been grieving for too long because grieving is the process of re-calibrating one’s life to be without the deceased loved one.  This means that each new day, each new holiday, each new run-in with a mutual friend, each new experience hearing an old song….these are all new experiences that have to be re-calibrated in one’s life, and they can trigger grief later on that was presumed diminished or dormant.

Solomon so aptly noted in Ecclesiastes 3 that there is a time to laugh and a time to weep.  Grieving needs to happen in order to have a healthy processing of a loved one’s death.  But what happens if the bills don’t let up enough to allow for time and space to grieve?  Knowing that insurance money will be coming in despite one’s paycheck can create a solid buffer for one’s time of incapacitation.

Buying life insurance is a way of loving your husband by preparing ahead to care for him even after you have departed and vice-versa.  The same is true for your children.

It is really important for Chris, the primary financial provider in our family, to be able to provide for his children.  Even if Chris dies early, he wants to make sure that I am left with enough money to provide for our children’s health care, educations, and opportunities.  Even if his children were never privileged to know him, they would still experience his love for them by the fact that their daddy thought ahead with them in mind to save and invest for the food on their table, their college funds, their travel opportunities, etc.

Every single one of us will die, and none of us knows when.  Even if you don’t have much discretionary income, you can always buy an inexpensive term policy (money that doesn’t invest over time, but that will pay out on the event of death) that will at least cover funeral expenses, etc.

Practically speaking, another reason to buy life insurance when you are still young and healthy is because if any health condition were to arise and you had not already started a policy, you may be denied coverage altogether or have to pay boatloads just to cover your premium.  Get it now before any health condition arises.

So as you are planning to commit your life to your beloved, remember to consider how you can love them and provide for them even after you are gone.  I know it can be a downer to think about death, so definitely choose your timing wisely, but I so strongly encourage you not to shy away from preparing for your death.  Planning for how you will be leaving your spouse when you die is an inevitable part of your life-long commitment to him and thus a tangible way that you can demonstrate love.

Article was originally published on March 23, 2011.

By Lindsay

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