Saturday, March 23, 2013

For She Who Believes

God never ceases to amaze me at His timing. Had you talked to me even a few months ago, I would have told you about the deep hatred I had for my husband. He was NEVER going to change. He would NEVER be able to love me the way that I needed. Marriage wasn't worth it.  He could have died, and I was certain my life and the lives of my children would be better. In fact, my stress level was so high back then that I was having severe chest pain, worrying my doctor that I might have a heart attack in the near future.

Except that Christmas Eve, after two weeks of being separated, God got a hold of yours truly.

Five years of knowing my husband, and that night, I let go and allowed God to do some serious heart surgery on me. Years of pain and bitterness made me sick to my stomach as the hurt resurfaced. That night, no matter what the cost, I chose to forgive my husband for years of words that crushed me, that trampled on me, and that left me alone and despondent in my hatred. Something in me changed that night. It was God's Christmas gift to me.

But that change also allowed me to dig my heels in and want to make this marriage last forever. I wasn't going to allow divorce to wreck another marriage and another family. Love isn't easy, guys. It's the toughest thing in this world to do, especially in the light of loving your spouse unconditionally. Sometimes, love has to be tough and set painful boundaries. Love has to say NO because it's the best for everyone in a family. Love has to say that you have a choice to make a change for your family because we need you as a husband and father.

But our marriage has thankfully withstood a very painful fire that almost burned us to the ground. It's still enduring a trial, which I'll share more about later as God works and moves in the midst of it. It has barely managed to hang on through some dark times. I'm certain our marriage will withstand any fire that comes our way now. And I'm certain that I can't imagine life without my husband now. Even our marriage counselor saw the difference, telling my husband that she saw something in me that she hadn't seen the first day I walked in her door... that I truly love and honor my husband now. And you know what? I do. I never thought it was possible. But with God, all things are possible for him who believes.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

What is free?

Last night into today, I learned something new about God and his attitude towards sin. I had one of those moments as a wife yesterday where I had to go off alone and begin to process things. I had to pray because suddenly, my strength was absolutely GONE. I've had so many of those moments over the past five years, especially so over the past few months. It is true where your strength ends that God's strength begins. It is also true that God really wanted you to rely on His strength all along.

Being married is HARD. Don't let anyone tell you that it isn't. Many married couples celebrate anniversaries by the grace of God, which is true of mine. Marriage is for LIFE. Nothing good comes from divorce, which is what I'm beginning to painfully understand now. Yet something so precious, so great, comes from getting married again. Something even greater comes from staying married for LIFE. I know that I still wait as healing comes to my family in waves. We take small steps forward and sometimes, it feels like HUGE, faltering steps back.

Today was a HUGE step back. I found that for the first time, I wasn't really angry at my husband. I was disgusted with this huge demon in his life called Anger. Anger that overwhelms. Anger that makes excuses. Anger that says, "I can never change. I will trap you in my grasp forever." Anger that screams and curses in its rage and that cannot allow wisdom and understanding to enter in. Anger that controls instead of being controlled. You see, I know that the man that God created my husband to become isn't angry in a sinful way. If I had not seen the picture of who God would mold him to become, then I would have not had the strength to marry him in the beginning, when I was still suffering from the pain of absolute rejection.

But today, I also see that while sin breaks the heart of the Father, He still loves us. As the teacher to my children, the good that came from this day is that God doesn't yell at us in Anger. He chastens us in love, never screaming or yelling at us that He hates us. He disciplines us because He loves us so much.

As a wife, I am placed in situations where I'd rather not be, being called upon to speak the truth of God when I'd rather not, instead being quiet so as not to break the happy bubble or bring on a verbal onslaught. Not so easy when God isn't letting you even sleep because He needs to use you to speak a painful truth. Sin is so damaging, God will do anything to keep you from it... even use you as a wife or a husband to speak what He needs to speak.

So today, I keep that picture in mind. I'm reminded of something I read on Facebook yesterday. That knight in shining armor on a white steed has NOTHING on my husband. I know it may seem a major setback, but in the end, my husband is still God's son. And I want my Daddy, on the day we meet, to be proud of me for the way I've treated His son, my husband, despite how I am being treated.

But today, as my husband's keeper, I pray for his freedom from anger that controls. I pray for all-out breakthrough in his spirit for complete healing from places of deep pain. My husband will step up and lead our home even if he's scared sometimes. As a mother, I need him to teach our children about who God is and why He loves them. As a wife, I need to know that when I fall down, he will love me and support me through it. And as a family, we will continue to grow and love and be a place of safety for each other and for our children as they grow to know Christ Jesus. The peace of God is prevalent in my home and in my heart. And I fully believe that where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is complete Freedom.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Time for what joy I can find...

With a deep breath and a sigh in my spirit, I begin this blog today, March 20, 2013. I never thought I'd be writing from a place of such brokenness. But I am learning today how to become my husband's keeper, his joy and crown. I am learning about my relationship with Jesus Christ through my husband. I am learning how I am also the keeper of my family, the teacher to my children, who are the very example of my relationship with God. This journey, it has a long story.

But let today be a place of beginning of what is in the process of becoming new... all things become new in Christ, of that I am certain. But the painful part is the TIME of waiting for my joy to become complete in Christ. I am in a place I never could have imagined for myself so long ago. But what I do know is that God knew all my days before they even began, and He knows me so well that He isn't surprised by the crazy circumstances.

And so with that, I'll begin telling you of the journey of what brought me here to this place, and what God shares with me about being my husband's keeper, the keeper of my family, and the sharer of His Immeasurable Light.