Let’s take a deep breath. And let’s lay this before Jesus.
give you a concrete answer about the job. He wants you to be happy. But he feels the pressure every husband does to provide well financially for his wife/family. You have been crying every day. He knows VERY WELL you are definitely NOT happy. He is trying to give you what he can to make you happy – but he probably feels like a huge failure as a husband because you have been so unhappy for so long. When husbands try and try and try to do things to please their wives and their wives are never satisfied and never happy, they eventually retreat and give up. They think, “What’s the point of putting in so much effort? She is going to just cry and be upset no matter what I do. It’s not worth it.” I vote to THANK HIM for allowing you to work part time and for providing so well for you and then to enjoy the gift of being able to work just part time.
Even if you did make “the biggest mistake of your life” by marrying your husband – which I am not convinced you have, (by the way, almost everyone feels this way at some point!) – God is still sovereign, my sweet sister. And it is God’s will for you to stay here. I have a feeling that there is much to be learned at His feet right now. I don’t want you to miss any of the good things He has in store for you!
You don’t have to want
to be married to him right now. Feelings are not the basis for our actions as believers in Christ
. THANKFULLY! There will be times with emotions like this to work through – but then, you have to “boss your feelings around” (Shaunti Feldhahn) and decide to honor Christ anyway, trusting Him to be able to bring something beautiful from this situation. He is totally capable of doing just that!
- ALL spouses have to deal with and accept painful things and all spouses are sinned against and hurt. This is not an unusual case at all, my friend.
What this experience is doing, is bringing all of your true motives to the surface so that you can allow God to remove all the sin and refine your faith and purify your motives. This would happen no matter who you married. God uses marriage (and any struggles/trials/challenges) in life to reveal our sin. You would have had to deal with this even if you had married someone else.
How is your time with God going?
GRACE ALONE’S EMAIL
I don’t feel like I even know what love is anymore. I don’t know how to trust God – I’m so scared.
I feel like God let me down.
I was the girl who had very high standards, when guys asked me on a date, if I didn’t think they could be a potential husband for me, I wouldn’t go. I was waiting for the “right one.”
I thought God clearly told me this man was, indeed, that right one, but now I don’t know anything anymore. My husband was the only guy I entered a courtship with. I sat there in premarital counseling listening to him say that he would want kids, and how leading his family spiritually was so important to him. I feel like I was let down by God and by my husband.
- I always think, here I am, the girl who tried to make all the right choices, and I ended up like this.
I see other people blessed in their lives and marriages, and I cannot help but feel like God is punishing me. Every time I think I should spend time with God, I start questioning everything – does God care, does He love me, is He working on my husband? Millions or questions go thru my head to the point that often I end up not even having a quiet time or at least a good one. If the way a husband loves his wife is supposed to portray an image of God’s love towards us, than I don’t feel very loved at all. I am the girl who is always counseling others and pointing them to God, but I have no idea where to even begin myself. I feel like I’m in one deep depression with no sign of the slightest deliverance. I’m sorry if I am repeating myself. I’m so thankful God led me to blog. I desperately needed someone to talk to.
ANOTHER EMAIL FROM GRACEALONE:
What I felt like God was showing me was that far too long, I have put other things before Him – including my marriage. I have a lot of idols. You are right when you say my relationship with God has been suffering – it has.
I realize that I, like you in the beginning, go thru all the right motions without any actions to back it up. I do want to start honoring God in my marriage and I know I need to spend more time with Him. My goal would be to try to get up an hour earlier and have a quiet time. Please pray for me- as this is hard.
Yesterday, I asked my husband if he still loved me – he couldn’t answer. He said that it is hard to separate all the accumulated anger he feels towards me over the past few years.
For me, It seems almost unbearable to try to “respect” him when I don’t even know if he loves me or not. Nevertheless, I want to try. I told my husband that I want to change… He sarcastically laughed and said “Yeah right, I have heard that before. The fact of the matter is that neither of us will probably ever change.”
- He is right – I have tried changing before and I seem to always go back to my same old ways.
You see I am worried about telling my husband I want to change “sticking to it for three days” as he says, and then reverting back. I don’t want that to happen. I also feel like I am having a very hard time even being generally motivated in life. I don’t feel like cleaning my house I feel very tired, I don’t feel like exercising, or trying to eat right- etc etc etc.
I don’t know how to live a life that is not driven by my emotions because that is all I have ever known. Letting go of kids completely, seems impossible to me. I want to try… I just am afraid it will be very short lived.
Thank you for being such a blessing and ministry in my life right now. You will never know how grateful I am.
This is exactly what I prayed would happen – that God would begin to convict you of your idols and that you would be willing to surrender to Him and to begin to do things His way. 🙂 THANK YOU, GOD!
A few suggestions (my own personal opinions, for whatever they are worth):
1. Do not ask your husband if he still loves you. Asking him that question shows that you are putting your security and identity in him and that you are looking to him for acceptance and safety instead of to Christ. Your words about the marriage and spiritual things are probably going to be destructive right now. I Peter 3:1-6 is your assignment. Your power is not in words at all, but in learning to allow God’s Spirit to empower and change you in a radical way and in showing genuine respect, honor and godly unconditional love to your husband no matter what he does or does not do. (Single ladies, you do not have to stay with a man you are not married to. I Peter 3:1-6 is not a command for you. But once you are married, this will need to be your mindset.)
Your husband is DEEPLY wounded – as wounded or probably much more wounded than you are based on what I know from what you have shared. Please focus on what you can do to bless him, not how you want him to meet your needs. He is so wounded right now, he may not be able to meet your needs. One day, when he is stronger, he may be able to. Right now, my prayer is that you will allow God to heal you and allow God to work through you to begin to heal your husband, too.
2. I’m glad you apologized to him. Awesome. But – don’t apologize any more, is my suggestion – unless there is a new disrespectful or sinful thing that you did. Then apologize without any explanation or justification of yourself.
3. This is going to be a LONG, LONG process. Like a year or several years. Maybe longer. That is a good thing many times, it forces us to refine our motives even when it seems like our husbands are not changing. Your husband is going to be skeptical at first. That is normal. Thankfully, you are not depending on him but on Christ from now on, so it doesn’t really matter what he says or feels – I hope that makes sense. His feelings matter. They are important. But they are not what you are building your life on.
What matters is what God says and pleasing God. That is all that matters.
That is all you are responsible for. You are only responsible for yourself, your sin and your obedience to God. We will trust God to take care of your husband in His timing. So, you are going to have to put your own desires on the back burner, commit your needs and desires and dreams to Christ – and focus on obeying God and blessing your husband. Not to get anything in return, just to love him with the love of Christ and to bless him.
4. I would recommend starting in John with a chapter a day or so. And, I would recommend reading at least one post on my blog, if not several, each day. I suggest starting a list of all the things you admire/respect about your husband and add to it every change you get. Take that list with you into your prayer closet. And start a list of all of your sin and take that list with you, too. Pray for God to change you and bless your husband. Don’t tell God to change your husband right now. God will handle him. Right now, it is time for you to get out of God’s way so that your husband can begin to hear God’s voice again. And the only way to do that is for you to obey God for your end of things.
5. God is sovereign. He is able to give you children if it is His will. He is able to change your circumstances, your husband’s heart and all of that. It is a small thing for Him to do that. He may allow you to have children later. I don’t know.
Your job is to find all of your contentment in Christ, not in your husband, in feeling loved, in having your way, in “feeling happy” in the moment, or in having children.
Please understand, idolatry always destroys and brings death. Sin always brings death.
Desiring children is a good thing. Children are a blessing. But – they are not more important than Christ and they are not more important than your marriage covenant and they are not more important than your obedience to God and your walk with Him.
- Children (in and of themselves) do not bring us contentment and satisfaction. I can promise you that!
- Husbands (on their own) do not bring us contentment and satisfaction. I can promise you that, too!
- Only Jesus can bring true contentment and satisfaction.
As you surrender yourself fully to Him, saying, “Not my will but Yours be done” and as you rest in His love and sovereignty – you can be content as you trust Him to do what is ultimately best for you and your husband and what will ultimately bring glory to Himself.
6. Your motivation has to be to please Christ and to be a godly steward of your body, your time, your marriage and all of your resources. Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God! That is your motivation! You will stand before Christ very shortly when this life is over – your motivation is that you want to hear Him say, “Well done, My good and faithful servant.” He has called you to fulfill His purposes for you. You are His servant. When He asks you to do anything, your answer is, “Yes, Lord!” He gave all of Himself for you – now, you give all of yourself fully to Him. It is an adventure every day to see what He will show you and teach you and what He might do. He gives good things and good surprises and even all of our suffering is a tool in His hand to make us more like Christ. You cannot lose! If good things happen, God is behind them and He will use them to bless you and cause you to grow. If bad things happen, God will use them to bless you and cause you to become more mature and complete, lacking nothing. You cannot lose when you are abiding in Christ. That is the best place in the world to be – in the center of His will. That is where there is overflowing love, joy, peace, fulfillment, purpose, acceptance, security and power.