Our eyes have been known to deceive us; to stay focused on the sin that has beset our men. Our minds keep mulling over past hurts, fear of future failures, where we are headed and if the rug will be pulled out from under us again.
If you are anything like I am, you have a tendency to operate in self protection mode. I was always trying to find new ways to support my husband but also keep myself at arms length to not endure any more heartache. I was reading every book out there for every perspective possible to fix my husband. Some of that was pure and it was motivated by love- but a lot of it was motivated to get what I wanted; a husband to love me, serve me, care about me and fulfill me. The “me” word came up often. I now refer to it as “the sea of me.” When I look back at all the time I spent trying to control the outcome or the next fall or how I much time I spent thinking about “what if” scenarios, it makes me sad. Precious time was lost and most definitely wasted.
One of the best things I ever did was complete the OCAH counseling program offered at Pure Life Ministries. It is an intense 12 week biblical counseling program with a certified biblical counselor who has walked in our shoes. I was so excited to get started on fixing my husband and his problems! Boy was I sadly mistaken. Instead, I got a crash course in taking the low road. There were times I was very frustrated because the counselor wanted me to focus on the Lord and what the Lord wanted to show me about me. ME? This was not about me! This was about betrayal, disappointment, unrealized dreams, hopes and more.
Soon, I realized that my counselor was more right than I could have imagined. Through her teaching and pointing me back to the Word of God, I learned about my own pride, my own sin and especially that regardless of what my husband chooses- every decision I make I am responsible for and accountable for. Who I am when the storm comes rolling in says a lot about who God is in me. Have I allowed Him to be Lord of my life or have I only called on Him when I need a savior or a prayer answered? This is not an easy way. It is called dying to self. The world doesn’t teach this. The world teaches self preservation but the Bible teaches soul preservation. I dare to repeat what I once heard Lisa Bevere say “GOD is more concerned about our soul condition than He is our circumstances.” God wants us to choose His ways over our own self protective ways. His way is for our highest good and for the highest good of those we love.
What does this mean? It means that instead of threatening our husbands with endless ultimatums, instead of slamming doors, instead of telling all of our girlfriends what is wrong with our men, instead of being self centered, we will choose to go to the cross; to die to self and to surrender it all to the Lord and allow Him to reveal His perfect plan in our hearts and allow Him to set the course of action. We will pray and believe God for His perfect will. This does not mean that we turn a deaf ear or a blind eye to something that is detrimental to our husband’s soul- it just means we will stop trying to control them and allow God to speak to our hearts through the Holy Spirit, through godly counsel and or pastoral leadership and those who have been called to speak into our life. We will choose healthy (godly) ways to express ourselves. We will choose healthy (godly) ways to relieve the stress and the anxiety that comes when we are overwhelmed. We will stop doing the same things over and over that have not worked for us yet. God gives us new opportunities moment by moment.
Lastly, I want to share with you what ended up being the catalyst in setting me free from much of the bondage I was enslaved to… serving others. I have never found a better way to get outside of myself, my problems, my worries, my heartaches and disappointments then getting into the life of someone else. When my OCAH counselor suggested I pray that God show me where I could give back, I did. I ended up going through a volunteer course at Children’s Hospital. I read books to children who were waiting for their cancer treatments, or held crying children so parents could take a break and let me tell you ladies… there is NOTHING that made me realize faster that my problems were minuscule in comparison to others than that of holding a sick baby not knowing if they were going to make it into adolescent years let alone adulthood.
Serving others gives us a new perspective. Perspective is everything.
*Note* I realize that I am writing from a “Christian” wife’s perspective and
not all who will read my words are Christians or have encountered Jesus
Christ. If you are someone who is not a believer but you feel a tug on
your heart that leans towards wanting to believe that there is a GOD
who wants to help you and set you free, please email me at
[email protected] If you are someone that is not there or has no
desire to be there, the words I have written can still be applied to