Let me just start out by saying this is not addressed to shame or scold anyone. I'm only addressing women in marriage & not men because I can only speak from what God has brought me through as a woman. I've battled dissatisfaction in my marriage more than once. This isn't my first marriage(so I know all about failure). But what I've found in my search for God's answer in my desire for more from marriage is pretty crazy & to many down right offensive but if you know me for any length of time you know I tell it like I hear it straight from the heart of God. What I hope to do in writing this is to paint a picture of God & His beloved bride…accurately & with love.
When we first meet & date the "one" we hold onto every word. The very words we often times eventually resent. You look at them in all their perfection just to one day be married & grow to a place that someones looks become meaningless. At one point all their idiosyncrasies made you feel all warm inside & now you've grown to a place of pure annoyance. Maybe you don't feel all these at once but on occasion my guess is you've most certainly felt them. Hollywood has done a number on painting a pretty stinkin beautiful picture of LOVE. BUT…Here in lie the problem & the ever increasing divorce rate in the world & the church. It's pretty darn obvious that the world began influencing the church (not the other way around) when we began to have the same chance of divorce as the unsaved world did. You may wonder OK what are you trying to say? Follow me here.
When I married my husband it was because I genuinely loved him. Everything about him. I still do. But somehow along the way I began to expect him to fulfill these romantic expectations that he had no idea I had created. So 7 years later & many times of frustration God has revealed to me something that as a child of God & one who so desperately desires more of Him, was a really surprising answer.
Can you imagine a human being fulfilling every single desire you ever had? I thought this existed. I really did. Until God proved to me otherwise. It's been over 4 years since I decided to relentlessly pursue God and all He was. In doing so I have encountered more pain than I ever expected. Pain? You may wonder. Yes pain and as a dear friend of mine so clearly stated not long ago "Precious in His sight is the death of His Saints"~Psalm 116:15. Most refer to that as an actual death but have you considered at any point in time that "dying to self" is death. Marriage is such an intimate connection with another that when you are flared by something they may have done you immediately begin taking score against them. But have you considered that the very thing that flared you is not the problem but the flare inside you is. What is it inside you that needs to die? Why is it easier to believe that everything that happens to us is someone else's fault? I learned a while back that if I wanted to grow into the woman God had called me to be that it would take a lot of self inspection then addressing many times being pruned by God to become more like His Son. How was I behaving, speaking, and carrying myself? Was this reflective of who I belonged to? Could others see Jesus in me?
Let me tell you my marriage has been a reflection of myself more than I liked. God gave me a strong-willed man that was as stubborn at believing he was right as I did. I thank God for that now. Because I was unable to push my way around & demand my own way parts of Katie had no other choice but to die. And DYING to self HURTS. Something fierce. But God is so faithful & has rewarded that obedience time & time again. I've learned that my husband is my ministry and loving him is apart of my purpose here on earth. Holding his mistakes against him is voluntarily participating in the enemy's will for his life but forgiving & serving him is apart of God's will. The fact I could have been a willing participant in anything satan wanted to do makes me sick & even more determined but I'm guilty as charged. That's what opened my eyes to truth & freedom in my marriage. I'm still learning. No where near perfection I hold on to hope that God is not done with him yet. I choose daily to believe that I am apart of something much bigger than I can see & that is my husband's success for the Kingdom. I am no longer concerned with what he can do for me but what can I do to advance the Kingdom in my home & in the lives of those around me. How can I honor God better but by honoring my husband in word & deed. How can I worship God any more purely but by encouraging & speaking life into my marriage. The Bible is full of scriptures about love, submission, and honor…and for good reason. It's God's order of things. It's the apart of the path of righteousness, it's a stop on the path to be living blessed & favored.
My selfishness serves eternity nothing of purpose. That's how I choose to live, with eternity in mind. God is most glorified when we surrender our way & choose His way even when we have every right to give up. Which I'm totally guilty of in the past but I will fight until I'm gone to make sure my husband is supported, loved, and edified trusting God that He will finish & perfect the work He began in my man. Looking back we started out unequally yoked. (He was saved after years of praying & actively forgiving and loving) But I can tell you there isn't a bone in my body that regrets a tear, a hurt feeling, or frustration because in being the imperfect human being he is (we all are) he drove me to the feet of Christ. It pushed me with so much force that I wasn't backing down from moving forward. I meet the love of my life(Jesus) & will never be the same so in part I owe my husband my life…my soul. He loves his family & I well, he provides, he is loyal, always home, an attentive father, and my best friend. There's no way my demand for more of what the world tells me is love will stop me from finding the true answer to love in the Bible then gracefully and abundantly giving it to my husband. He is the most beautiful person I've met, His heart leaves me stunned. God has great big plans for him & if I had forsaken the call to be his wife & love him no matter what then he'll tell you himself, he never would have made it this far. There isn't a devil in hell that will rob me of giving of myself & knowing when I do so, God will restore me to overflow. Really, it all lay in the connection to Christ because without Jesus leading me we'd already had been a statistic and that's... real.