A handsome guy and a beautiful girl will make a beautiful wedding; but a faithful man and a pious woman will make a beautiful marriage.
A few excerpts from the presentation by Mufti Menk entitled Happily Ever After. Growing Marriage for a Lifetime:
"It is important for us to concentrate on the word growing because we grow. Many people don't know why they marry initially. In fact, the youth of today are bombarded by advertisements, and by the media, by the television, the internet, and so on, and by the glammer and glitter of the outside world that they don't even know how to choose a spouse; mostly it is based on what someone looks like. That's a fact. And this is where the disaster occurs because many times they say, Allah hu Akbar, May Allah protect us, the proof of the pudding is in eating; Allah grant us goodness. Pudding can look very great outwardly but the minute you put it in your mouth, you realize this is not my cup of tea; May Allah protect us. Marriage is nothing like that. It is a deep institution. It is an union whereby male and female have come together by the decree of the Al Mighty (using the name of the Al Mighty) in a sacred union that has rights that need to be fulfilled by both parties. And the reason for marriage...Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala has made it clear in The Quran. Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala says very clearly that from His signs, this is Sura Rum, is that He has created for you from you, for yourself a spouse that you may achieve comfort and solace in and you may be happy and content by this relation. Allah wants the multiplication of man on Earth, and this is the reason why He has beautified the eyes of one gender the other because this beautification would result in a union, which would result in the deed of intimacy, which would result in reproduction, which would result in the increase of mankind, which would result in more worship of Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala, and at the same time, the plan of Allah for us all would be executed. This is why we get married, Subhanallah; for the plan of Allah to be executed, we get married. As a result and a gift, Allah made for us beautification in the opposite sex, and this is a gift of Allah (SWT) so that people begin to work towards it. If it was not beautified for us, nobody would work toward it. And this is why it is unnatural and it is abnormal to be attracted to the same sex, according to Islam..."
"...You ask a young boy, very young age...for your information, the age is becoming younger and younger because of the environment, because of genetically modified food, because whatever else you would like to say but at a younger age they know more about marriage than sometimes those who are already married. Allah hu Akbar. Allah hu Akbar. Just like with the gadgets of today, you find the little boy 5 years old will know more than his father about the iphone. It's a fact. May Allah Subhanna wa 'ta 'ala grant us understanding. Recently I was in South Africa speaking to a group of people and I told them from the age of 8 and 10, you need to start speaking with your boys and girls about marriage, and a lot of them agreed with me I think because they know that from that age they already have their girlfriends and boyfriends, and they are already setting their minds and eyes on people. May Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala protect us and grant us goodness and may He open our doors. Remember, as parents it is a duty to communicate with your own children; don't be shy. If you are not going to tell them what marriage is all about, what intimacy is all about, they will learn it from someone who will teach them the wrong thing. Perhaps they will learn it from a colleague at school, or perhaps a teacher who is homosexual himself or herself. May Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala safeguard us. It's a fact. It is happening on the globe and we are suffering as a result. So I call on parents to communicate with their children openly and to discuss with respect that which needs to be discussed. You are responsible. You are the one who will build the mind of your child as to how to look for a spouse but if you never ever spoken to your child about looking for a spouse what kind of spouse do you expect them to look for; May Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala grant us goodness. By right, we should be living in a world where we help them with looking for a spouse but you and I meaning yourself and myself, we know very clearly that today that does not happen. In a lot of cases and instances, it does not happen. They come to you and impose on you their choice, that's it, so it is best for you to help them make their choice by speaking about it whilst they are still quite young; May Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala grant us a good bond with our own children and may He make us from those who are not affected by the adverse environment or who can protect ourselves from it in order to be achieving the happiness of Allah Subhanahu wa 'ta 'ala..."
"...And it's our fault. We send them to the schools we send them to. We send them to the various mixed type of education. We did this. We did that. We had a place in the mall where we were every week. We did not dress them appropriately when they were young so as they grew up, they did not want the appropriate dress. We are the ones who place them in front of the televisions and we subscribe to the dirtiest internet channels or satellite channels and so on and then we expect our daughters to still have a good Islamic choice of a spouse. Who is the hypocrite? The father of the home. Big hypocrite. May Allah protect us. Why? Where are you? What did you allow your daughter to do all along and now you want to come in and say, No! I allowed you to become a mango but now, for example, I want you to be a banana..."
"...So at a certain stage you had control over the child. What did you do when you had control over your child? Did you guide the child? This is why I say speak to the child earlier because today we are losing control earlier..."
"...My brothers and sisters don't blame Allah Subhanna wa ta' ala for our failure. May Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala grant us success."
"And it is best to work with YOUR family because YOUR family will be able to guide you along; they will need to support you, and if you have difficulty speak with the Ulama, and I really plead with those who are slightly older, when you have your children, listen to them; understand that this is a new generation; that their thinking will not be like yours and with their children, it is an even newer generation. Their thinking will be even more different. One wonders...Sometimes I sit and I'm worried; how are my children going to get married or yours later on? Those who are younger, what will happen to them? We are worried. Wallahi because society is changing rapidly. What was the case ten years ago is no longer the case. Wallahi life has changed. May Allah (SWT) grant us goodness. So we said two qualities when they come to you, do not deny...the religion of a man and his character and conduct which makes part of his spirituality; if those two qualities are found in the man...his deen is okay and his character and conduct is okay; he has come and asked for your daughter; your daughter is keen and interested, don't say no for nothing. If you say no, the hadith says there is going to be great chaos on Earth. What happens? Suddenly the Jinn gets into your daughter's head or sometimes, the boy, sometimes he might find someone else but the daughter suffers more; she suffers much more. It was something close at reach; you know, dad has blocked it; mom has blocked it, something, and she would suffer a lot, and there's no shortage of women. There is a shortage of good men. Believe that. There is a shortage of good men and I plead with all the youth who are here - Become good men. We don't want men; we want good men; responsible...those who know marriage is about really getting together with someone who is suitable to be the mother of your children so that you can continue the plan of Allah Subhanna hu wa ta' ala. What is the point of having children in number who are worshipping Shaitan?; rather have children who are worshipping Rahman. May Allah Subhanna hu wa ta' ala grant us goodness..."
"My brothers and sisters what a beautiful relation we have. Look we are Muslimeen. We are talking about our deen. We are talking of crises that are facing society today. The youth leave your bad habits. You need really to be a good man so that you are able really to rear the champions of the Ummah of tomorrow. May Allah (SWT) grant that to us and the same applies to the sisters..."
Mufti Menk in Happily Ever After. Growing Marriage for a Lifetime.