First I leaned my head on his shoulder and told him I was so thankful he has stayed faithful to me.
- he feels useless
- he feels like I don’t listen
- he feels tyrannical when he asks me for help.
- he mentioned beginning to feel that way before he started school a few years ago when he was laid off from his job.
- he feels like this year in particular has been really hard.
- he said he doesn’t want to give me false hope that he will stay, but that he really wants our physical intimacy to continue.
I can see more clearly than ever how my disrespect has hurt him!
- I make effort to maintain physical intimacy
- I thank my husband for every little thing I notice him do for me, (he’s started to thank me for what I do, it’s like the most polite house ever!)
- I drop what I’m doing to help him when asked and do it cheerfully
- I give him my full attention when he speaks.
- I don’t begrudge his time spent doing other things (he actually closes his computer from time to time now and comes to sit with me on the couch and cuddle! I treat these moments like a special gift.).
- When ever I feel overcome with jealousy and have the urge to try and check his messages, I give that up to God. The constant pain in my heart is gone now, it only creeps up on me once in a while, and usually after my husband makes a joke about other women (he uses humor to help him cope with his insecurities. He always has, and I never took it personally until now) so when this happens I leave the room and pray.
This wife understands that if things are going to heal in her marriage, God wants to change her first. Yes, her husband needs changing, too. That is very obvious. But – she is cooperating with God and seeking to honor God and her husband and to become the wife God desires her to be no matter what her husband does. And as she begins to be empowered by God’s Spirit and to respond in His wisdom and in His ways – that will make it much easier for her husband to hear God’s voice, himself.
I am so glad she is listening to her husband, making his concerns and feelings huge priorities for her. That is so important! And I am proud of this husband for being so clear and direct about his concerns. That is a blessing! It is really hard to know what is wrong if someone doesn’t ever say what the problem is. Mind reading can be pretty impossible for most of us!
I am also thrilled that this wife is sharing her heart in a vulnerable, respectful, honest but kind and non-pressuring way. Her husband can actually hear her and care about her feelings because of the way she approaches him. If she was screaming and yelling or making demands – he would shut her out. Notice how he is seriously considering all of the things she is saying now that her approach is so different – and how unnerved he is by her peaceful spirit. THAT IS A GREAT THING. He is hearing her loud and clear.
It is not really ultimately about this wife and her husband – this is ultimately about this woman and Christ.
As she obeys I Peter 3:1-6 and Ephesians 5:22-33 – that will bring more conviction on her husband than anything she could do to try to control him or try to force him to come back to her. She is also opening up the floodgates of heaven by her faith and obedience to Christ to allow God to work in her marriage and to begin to work in her husband’s heart so that her husband can have the best chance to hear God’s voice instead of her own.
No matter what happens, God will change this precious wife. I am very excited about that! And if there is to be healing, this is the path this wife must take for her marriage and her husband, too. It is a DIFFICULT path. It involves dying to self, repaying evil with good and tearing out all the idols and pride in her heart and humbling oneself before Christ and totally submitting oneself to Christ.
The world doesn’t understand this approach. The world says, “Stand up for your rights.” “Make demands.” “Make ultimatums.” “Tell your husband what he better do … or else.”
But God doesn’t work the way the world does. His wisdom is much higher.
I am excited to see all that God has in store for this wife and marriage and husband.
There are signs that God is convicting him and that he is softening.
As he continues to see his wife become more and more the woman of God’s dreams, and as he sees her new behavior, faith, joy and peace continue for month after month and then for a year and longer – that will get a man’s attention.
Many wives say, “My husband wants out of our marriage.”
That doesn’t really bother me too much. A husband’s feelings can change dramatically when a wife allows God to work powerfully in her heart. I am not going to keep my eyes on this husband – as if everything depends on him. And I am not going to keep my eyes on this wife as if everything depends on her. My eyes are on Christ. I can see what He wants to do. I know He is already in the future working things out for their good and His glory.
Thank you for praying with me for this couple.
I pray for every stronghold of the enemy to be torn down here. I pray for Christ alone to be exalted in this man’s life and this woman’s life and in this marriage. I pray for Your Spirit to empower this wife to obey You and to hear Your voice clearly and to be sensitive to Your every prompting. I pray for this husband to begin to hear Your voice and to have a softened heart that is receptive to Your voice. I pray for You primarily to reconcile this husband back to Yourself and for him to be in right relationship to You, Jesus. Then I pray for Your healing for this marriage. Thank You that You are a God who knows how to raise dead things to life and that You know how to restore the years the locusts have eaten and that You know how to bring joy from mourning and beauty from ashes.
We trust You with this broken marriage and this husband and wife. We ask for Your greatest glory in their lives! We seek only Your will. We look to You to be the Healer here. Use this wife as Your partner to bring hope, faith, life, light, healing, joy, peace and the power of heaven to bear in this home.
In the Name and power of Christ,