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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Hot Topics ~ Jon and Kate


I admit it, I do not watch Jon and Kate + 8. Of course I've heard about them, I'm an avid news watcher and their mixed up lives have been all over the news lately.

Last night I was on Twitter reading tweets from Iran. (Yes, this is what I do in my down time.) And I noticed that Jon and Kate were trending #2, so I figured that something must be going on. I clicked on the trend and read what people were saying about them. It is amazing to me how these 10 lives have affected so many people.

I really did not want to watch the impending news of their divorce, I knew it was going to be very sad and upsetting. But then people kept tweeting about this woman's dirty feet and I started to get curious- how dirty can Kate's feet really be???

So I changed the channel from Mark's war stories show and saw the last 15 minutes of the program (he begrudgingly let me!).

We both sat there and watched this couple explain to millions of viewers that they were divorcing. They each shared all the silly little cliche's that people do when they have nothing else to say, for instance:"things will work out, we'll get through this", "change is hard but it's good - right?" And so on and so on.

It was awful. I was so sad about what a mess their lives were, and watching them in the past-playing with the kids- just amplified this, so much so that I forgot to even look at her feet.

In 15 minutes I gathered that these are obviously two very deeply wounded people who don't have a clue what being married is really all about. And I'm sure that the lights of Hollywood have dimmed the truth that they may have known at one time.

It seems I've heard that they were Christians??? Not sure, but I thought someone told me that once, but I don't see the evidence of two people bulding their lives on the proper foundation so I wonder. Like I said, I have never seen the show before so I can't comment on that.

But I will say that if Mark and I were sitting down with them to talk about their marriage, we would say the same thing that we have said to countless other couples facing an impending divorce....

The marriage problems are not the problem, they are a symptom of a greater problem. The real problem here is Jon's individual relationship with the Lord and Kate's individual relationship with the Lord.

If you deal with the symptoms, you'll never get to the real problem and you will repeat this cycle in your many different ways....until you address the actual cause of all this pain.

It's kind of like having two broken legs and putting a bandaid on your knee. It won't help you walk. Your legs are broken! Deal with the broken part and then you can walk.

This couple is broken. There is only One that is truly equipped to "fix" them. He can and wants to heal these shattered lives.

And of course, we would say: "Stop the show, deal with your lives." Did the show cause the divorce- NO. But it's certainly not helping. The TV show exposed what was in their hearts. That's what pressure does, it squeezes out the true motives and agendas that are inside of us and exposes our hearts. The good, the bad and the dirty feet-out there for all the world to see.

I believe that if this couple would humble themselves before the Lord, they would start their healing. They need individual healing first and then healing of the marriage.

I pray this happens.

What do you think??


Shelby said...

I like the way you think. I don't normally watch the show but I did last night, much in the manner of can't-stop-watching-a-train-wreck kind of thing, and I was just profoundly sad. A child of divorce myself, I really felt for the kids. As a married woman whose marriage has undergone some typical and not-so-typical stressors, I was really distressed that this "reality" show did not depict them putting in any effort to work on either themselves or their marriage. And you're right, the beginnings of that would be their own relationships with the Lord. Thanks for posting succinctly and eloquently exactly what I have been thinking.

Praise and Coffee said...

Thanks Shelby,
I don't think many people realize the reprocussions of divorce...for years and years to come. Graduations, weddings, has lasting effects.

Fitter After 50 said...

What do you tell people whose hearts have become so hardened they don't want to listen to anything you have to say.

Kasey said...

I too felt awful for the kids. It was hard to watch. But seriously people are commented on how dirty her feet were, really??? I agree also that I can't believe the show didn't focus at all on any efforts that they may have went through to work it out. Kate did say that she didn't want this. But knew that it had to be done. All in all it's just so sad.

Praise and Coffee said...

Oh Sew Good,
Ever heard, 'you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink?'

As a former horse owner, I disagree. If a horse doesn't want to go to water, I sure can't lead him there.

I can't change a hardened heart only God can...I can't even lead them to the Lord if they don't want to go.
This is where prayer comes in.

I would pray the prayers from Eph 1 and Eph 3 over their lives.
That God would open the eyes of their heart....

And add to that LOVE. Even when they are completly disobeying God. Walk in love (that does not mean you agree with them- only that you love them no matter what).

All things are possible!!

Just Mom said...

Nicely said, Sue.

I've never watched the show (I'm not a huge fan of reality TV), but like you I got interested in the couple once they became "news."

I was hoping and praying that they were going to say they were stopping the show to work on their marriage, and that TLC would revisit them in a few months to see how they were doing. I was saddened when I learned they had simply given up without really trying.

Praise and Coffee said...

I agree Kasey.

Praise and Coffee said...

Just Mom,
Yes, that would have been good, I was hoping the same thing. I'm sure contract and money may be playing into all this too. Very sad.

Jen - Balancing Beauty and Bedlam said...

Amen, sister. Totally agree with you.

beckyjomama said...

I used to LOVE this show, but we lost the TLC network on the great cable downgrade of 2008, so I haven't kept up in a while. However, I have been reading a lot about them and when I heard they had an announcement I hoped and prayed it would be they were stopping the show and getting counseling - CHRISTIAN counseling, since they DO profess to be Christians.

Truly, my heart breaks for these kids who have had their whole lives thrown out there before the world - the cute moments AND the meltdowns - and now have the sordid details of their parents marriage out there too. Seriously, the older girls HAVE to be getting razzed at school. It breaks me to think of their future.

I am trying so very hard to not throw stones and just PRAY for them.

Just pray for them.

Anonymous said...

I found your blog interesting. Is your message that divorce is wrong? Would you agree that there are times when it is necessary?

I believe - from firsthand experience - that there are times when divorce may be the last resort. And people need to know that it is okay. It is not right to stay with someone who is abusive and chooses not to change. I know from firsthand experience that after years of couples counseling and praying for guidance that sometimes it is best if two people part ways. I am at complete peace with my decision.

Back to Jon and Kate - it is their lives, not ours. We don't know what they are living through, only what is shown through the media.

"Judge not, lest be judged."

Karen said...

Perfectly said, Sue. I was a fan of the show, and the thing that was noteable for me was that over time, (although pretty rapidly) their life as a family became less about family, and all about acquisition, and what they each "deserved", in the name of doing it for "the kids". Never once did I hear them say they were doing or seeking what God would have for them. Sad, but plays out every day in the lives of many families that are not in front of cameras.
Oh, and that all people could talk about were her dirty feet? Oh please-talk about missing the forest through the trees- that's like everyone's fascination with President Obamas gray hair while our country continues it's downward spiral.

Praise and Coffee said...

Thanks Jen!

Becky, I really feel for these kids too. I wonder how they will feel about all of this many years down the road.

My message is first that I hope this couple seeks to get some real help and deal with what I feel is the number one issue- their personal relationships with the Lord.

If you read my blog, you know that I am not an advocate of someone staying in an abusive relationship, and have recently written about how staying in an abusive relationship is not what being a Christian wife is all about.

I have walked through divorce with many people very close to me, I do not lack compassion for someone going through such an incredibly painful situation. And I do not believe that a divorced person is perpetually "flawed" or "fallen". Our God is all about mercy and grace- my life would be a disaster without it.

I would never discuss the private matters of someones marriage I'm counseling with, but when they put it on tv for all the world to see, I believe that gives us the right to have an opinion (flawed as it may be) and to share it. We are only seeing a small portion of this, but it is very apparent these are two people in a lot of pain- I could see that in 15 minutes.

Like I said, I pray they get the help they need.
In the meantime, I also hope that people will read my blog post and recognize that many times the "situations" going on might be just a symptom or a deeper issue, our walk with the Lord...

I absolutely did not judge them.
Judgement is a permanent decision to say they they be damned...I would never do that.

But I will look at the fruit and say....let's pray for them and try to help othes avoid these same pitfalls.

Praise and Coffee said...

Morris Family, So true!

Anonymous...I accidently hit send too fast, I meant to add that I appreciate your input and opinion!! Thank you for sharing it and I'm so glad you have peace in your life now.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a tragedy. For me, and many Christians, marriage is sacred. To bow out of it so easily is showing there is no commitment to begin with. A vow is not taken seriously these days at all. It is so sad :(

Yes, the kids will suffer. There is nothing good that can come from divorce. My parents went through a divorce when I was 6. Six. My sister was barely 1. My daughter is now 7 and I could not imagine what something like that would do to her.
Life is not the same. Period. And it is certainly not better.
I understand there are divorce's out there deemed necessary or "biblical", but 95% of them are not.

Betsy said...

I have followed this show from the beginning. It is really upsetting to see this drastic turn for the worse. I felt like shaking them and yelling at them to wake up! Jon is thinking that the grass is greener on the other side. Another thing I noticed is his 2 new earrings and he pretty much said he was young and excited about his new life.

I will be praying with you. What an awesome testimony it would be if they both humbled themselves and put God first in their front of the world!

Allison said...

Oh... I totally agree with your post. For months, my friend and I have been saying that they need some serious Biblical counseling because we could see patterns of the destruction we have seen in the past headed their way. It is truly sad. I am sad for my own children because they have watched this show from the beginning. I havent allowed them to watch the new season to try to shield them from the disappointment that everyone feels.

Thena said...

I have watched them from the very beginning. I have seen pics from the old house that the little post-it notes were bible verses. But it's as if they have left them and God at the old house. There's been no mention of counseling or prayer in this decision. And that is so sad. The kids need counseling also. All the money in the world isn't worth what the unhappiness of the kids.

Lisa said...

The only thing I would add to what you have said is the matter of love and respect. I had to stop watching the show because of how disrespectful Kate was to Jon. I reminded me clearly of how I used to treat my husband. No marriage can withstand that cycle forever. The whole thing breaks my heart -- for them, for their children, for the public that now has permission to follow suit. What a complete disaster. My pray is for them to listen to those who love the Lord and would challenge them to reconsider, and redo how they do life...away from the cameras and with Christ as their sure foundation.

Mrs. Valente said...

My husband and I were, not too long ago, in a very similar situation (only with half as many little ones). We haven't had t.v. in over a year, so I only know what I've read online. But I do know that I've hurt so badly for Jon and Kate that I've shed actual tears.

I wish they were poor! It might sound strange, but Hubs and I talk about what a blessing our LACK of money was for us; it faced us to to look at the biggest non-spiritual consequence of divorce. We needed to be a family. We HAD to make it work. So, with God's grace, we did. I know it's not too late for Jon and Kate. From what I've lived through I can honestly say that it's never too late, but it WILL take a miracle. And one that I'm praying hard for.

Thanks for this post!

Kim said...

I am very sad about Jon and Kate. I have been watching the show and was hoping the big news last night was that they were going to go to counseling and work through their problems. WHAT a testimony that would have been! They have claimed to be Christians, they renewed their wedding vows a few months ago in Hawaii and said that they wanted their children to know that their mom and dad would ALWAYS be together, Kate's latest book has bible verses on every single page. That is what makes me the saddest. For them to say this is the best thing for their kids...the best thing for your kids is to get yourself to a Christian counselor and work through your MANY issues. Show your kids (and the world) that Christ can do a miracle and save a marriage! I am going to pray for reconciliation and healing in these two and their marriage!

Unknown said...

I was surprised that I never read or heard that they seek or got counseling.
It is sad.

Kimberly said...

I totally agree with what you have said about Jon and Kate. I love that show and even though I don't know them, I am heartbroken that it has come to this. I think "early mid-life crisis" may have set in for J and he is freaking out a little bit. But what they do not realize is how damaging this is for the kids. I'm afraid you will see behavioral changes in them.

Suzanne said...

I used to watch the show. Yes once I thought they were Christians...but that aside, your response to their relationships with the Lord, is the only answer. I know this firsthand and I am praying and working on it. Thanks Sue!

Samantha said...

Jon and Kate did several episodes showing the Sunday morning process of getting ready and getting to church... one episode showed great details of their church. As the seasons have gone on their passion for Christianity has seemed to wane in comparison to their love for money and material items. As with any other situation when God was removed from the equation the situation began to deteriorize more quickly. It breaks my heart for their children. I will continue to pray for their family.

Keri Wyatt Kent said...

Christians have problems, just like other people. Just because they are going through a difficult season doesn't mean they are not Christians. I think the struggles of marriage get tougher when you are in the spotlight.

Praise and Coffee said...

I agree, in fact I meant to write that earlier that I wished they could get the book "Love and Respect."

I have spent enough time counseling Christians to 'amen' that.
But it takes more than just being a Christian, it takes commitment to the Lord first and then each other.
The story in Matt 24 is a perfect example...when the winds came it was the house built on a solid foundation that stood strong. Both houses were hit with the storm, but the outcome revealed the foundations.

I'm sure the spotlight didn't help, but the "storm" of the spotlight is not the issue in my opinion, the foundation is.

This is written not to condemn them but to hopefully encourage others to learn from it.

I know that when I blow it- and I do quite often, I hope others can learn and avoid the same pitfalls.

I feel awful for the couple and the kids and hope to see their relationship healed by our Mighty God!

Praise and Coffee said...

Let's pray that this break will be good for the family:

Just Mom said...

I read that the show was going on hiatus for six weeks. Thank goodness. I'll keep praying for them and for marriages in general.

Anonymous said...

I have been a fan of the show but haven't been watching recently. I watched last night, though, hoping that they would be announcing that this would be their last season on the show so that they could focus on pulling their marriage back together. It was so sad to watch. It was interesting that so many people were commmenting on Kate's dirty feet. I noticed them too and although I have no degree my mind started playing amateur psychologist. I thought her dirty feet were very telling about what their life must really be like right now. Those of us who are fans of the show know how everything has to be "just so" with Kate. The house, the children...everything (remember the episode when they came to the new house for the first time and she spent FOUR HOURS cleaning the refrigerator. Including going at little crevices with a toothpick!) So, when I saw her dirty feet I didn't think "ewww, look at her feet". I thought how sad and lost she most feel right now if she went on t.v. like that and doesn't care. My prayer is still that God can work things out for them.

Christine said...

There is such a war on Marriages in our country right now and the only winner in any of this is going to be Satan.

Praise and Coffee said...

Anonymous, interesting observation! :)

amy & lisa said...

Well said!!

I have watched this show and enjoyed it. My heart is breaking just knowing that they are going their separate ways. Certainly need to keep them on our prayer lists.

Joy said...

You are absolutely correct.. and we need to pray for them.

elizabeth embracing life said...

This is a sad story indeed.

Michelle said...

I have watched the show a handful of times, and I know they did go to church, and I think they thought they were living a christian lifestyle. I am very saddened by this, because, you are right, they don't know what it means to be married. I believe that they were making the mistake that even many other christians make in their marriages by not putting each other first-and it didn't help that she wasn't very respectful to him a lot of times. With that show ruling their lives, I'm sure it was very hard to not only work on your relationship, but also work on your spiritual growth. They just didn't put any of that first, and this is the result. I am praying for them.

Mary Lou said...

What is sad is that it appears no one has stepped in to try and help them and stop the train wreck. TLC could help, but it must be about the almighty dollar. The stress and strain of so many children and him being a little younger than her did not help matters at all. I've watched it enough to see they had no family support, I can't remember all of it, but there is no support of family anyway so they are truly floundering around. They need our prayers instead of our criticism. I agree with everything you said in your post Sue. You hit the nail on the head and said it so well. May we all take a look at our own lives and the lives of those around us and see if we can't help them not become a sad statistic. Blessings on your ministry Sue.

Jeannee said...

I think you have written an excellent article!!! and I want to thank you for it ... because of the blurring of boundaries between the Christian and the secular worlds, this is all over the place, indeed ....

My personal opinion??? You take one hostile woman (Kate), and mix her with a guy who is very immature (John), and combine this with a couple who got married too young and had too many children too soon (NOT advocating abortion here !), and we have just the recipe for disaster the tv network was looking for ....

Praise and Coffee said...

Very well said, there's a whole lot of wisdom in your words.

L Harris said...

thanks for your thoughts on this. I was thinking how sad it was too. Not really all that surprised. I thought it was a great program but at the same it I could see the disrespect and hurt when I'd watch an episode once in a while. The love wasn't flowing; just nitpicking. It was hard to watch.

Karen said...

I have seen the show, and have to say that what was shown was often not "reality". I know several unrelated people across the country that have had firsthand experience with, primarily Kate, at various speaking events since the beginning. They come from Christian families, Kate's father, estranged since the sextuplets were born, is a pastor. They began speaking at mostly Christian events for love offerings, but as their fame grew, they cancelled on these events (often at the last minute)and began charging enormous fees. Some event planners have posted copies of the letters/emails they received from the PR company on the internet in an attempt to forewarn others.

I personally have severed my relationship with Zondervan, and will not review, endorse, or purchase anything from them until they cease the promotion of Kate's "Christian" books, and have notified my contacts there.

TLC has halted production of the show, not at the request of the family, but because they simply do not have enough footage to continue the storyline they have created, despite endless hours of filming, which speaks volumes as to what daily life is like for these poor children. It has been reported that they have been filming this "season" since March, and only got 6 episodes...

I am not judging them, I just refuse to support any company that continues to fuel this train wreck and benefit financially from them just because they are the current "hot topic". These children need intervention if they hope to have any sort of "normal" life, divorce or not. I do think they need many prayers, and I truly hope for a better life for all of them.

Praise and Coffee said...

Thanks Karen for your insight in this very sad situation.
We'll all keep praying.

Smelling Coffee said...

Sue~ I thought about you and your blog and marriage posts when I was watching Jon and Kate explain their break up to the world. My heart breaks for them, and I think you are spot on in the marriage advice you would give them.

As a family, we have watched the show in the past. But when this season opened with such turmoil, we decided we would not sit with our children and watch a family fall apart on TV.

My prayer for them is that they will both seek the Lord and that He will help them restore their marriage. And that the world will watch and see what God can do when both partners turn to Him.

I'm glad you posted on this...

Zaankali said...

Like you we never watch this show because we don't have cable tv. We have seen a couple episodes while staying at a hotel. But we happened to be on vacation when this episode aired so we watched it. I was so sad about what I seen. I agree with you in that they both need to work on their relationship with Christ because it seems they have drifted. I do remember hearing about them being Christians.
On a funny note. When I read your comment about her dirty feet being Twittered about I cracked up. I had noticed her feet while watching it and mentioned it to Mark. In one of the shows we had seen a while back she was interviewing cleaning ladies and it came out that she was a fanatic about having a clean house and that she mopped her dining room floor by hand 2 times a day. Maybe she has let up on that a little. Wink!

Anonymous said...

Very well said, Sue. I was never interested in this stressed me out to see all the chaos (like I don't have enough of that in my own life)! LOL

Your advice is one lesson that my husband I learned when we went through counseling (at year 15 of our marriage). We learned that it's usually undealt with issues that are affecting the marriage....individual issues and the individuals responsibility regarding their own relationship with God. It was a hard lesson to learn...but, well worth it! :D

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