Saturday, 21 April 2012
[This is reposted as part of our Best-Of Revelife Week. It was originally posted on November 5, 2009.]
I read an interesting article yesterday which reported that Ivanka Trump, the daughter of the infamous millionaire Donald Trump, got married recently to Jared Kushner, the owner of The New York Observer. That would be the end of the story, were it not for the fact that Kushner and his family are devout orthodox Jews. In order to gain acceptance into her fiancee's family, Ivanka Trump converted to Judaism.
Interfaith relationships can be very complicated, and a variety of outcomes can occur. Some seem to work out just fine for both parties, while other relationships end because the divide caused by differences in faith is too wide to be bridged by love alone. Perhaps more infrequently, one partner decides that he or she will convert to the other faith.
This isn't to say that the conversion is for love alone; after all, it is perfectly reasonable to suggest that, while falling in love with another person, one can also fall in love with his or her faith. Yet it is a slippery slope, as deep and personal as religious beliefs can be. There is always a chance that the conversion was for the wrong reasons and that later on he or she will realize the conversion was a mistake. How much more complicated a relationship gets when one realizes one has changed just to please the other person and not to please oneself!
Religious conversion is not for the faint of heart and not to be taken lightly. I don't expect anyone to come to having a relationship with Christ without first thoughtfully and carefully considering it, and I can only hope that those of other faith practices would feel the same way.
I don't pretend to know the heart and mindset of Ivanka Trump, but her example certainly makes me pause and consider what I would do in a similar situation.
Would you convert for love? If you've experienced a similar situation, what outcome or lesson came about from the relationship?