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A Wife Shares What She Is Learning in Biblical Marital Counseling

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I’m so thankful for this wife’s willingness to share what she is learning!  I believe this will bless you. 🙂

My Dear Husband (DH) and I have started Biblical Marital Counseling at a Baptist church near my job. They are very well known and its 6 sessions for free. Our first meeting went very well. our counselor was a young man with a wife and two boys. He was very knowledgeable in the word.  Here are some of the things he shared with us:

  • If I draw closer to God and my DH draws closer to God, it will draw us closer together. (the pyramid effect)
  • He talked about the man that was possessed, and the demon left and had no where to go. He then went back to the house and saw it clean and swept, and brought 7 of his friends. And the man was more tortured than before. With God’s help you can clean your heart, stop a habit, but you have to replace it with something. You can’t just leave it. He called it the “put off and put on.” The Bible talks a lot about it. He gave a sheet that we can add to, how to stop one thing (Put off) and what to “put on” in its place.
  • We talked about respect. Respect comes in all different shapes and sizes. For me, respect = trust. For many reasons, I am not able to trust my DH with many things. That translates to my DH that I do not respect him. I want to trust him, but that is something he and I will have to work on together.

I have been on this journey since I contacted you in early January. And I can say that it really takes focusing on God.

Yes, my DH has MANY issues… But those are not for me to fix.. I have to Put Off trying to “help” him be better and love me how I feel he should, and Put ON My relationship with Christ. Let the Lord step in. Yes, my DH needs help. But not from my mortal hands. God can do anything if we just take our hands off of it, and let Him in his infinite Wisdom and love take over.

Time daily spent in prayer is essential and daily Bible reading as well. Get a devotional!! And do it daily!!

THINGS I WOULD SUGGEST TO OTHER WIVES JUST BEGINNING THIS JOURNEY

  • Work on yourself!! Your husband will see the change. Move your focus from your husband to God.
  • Love God, and through Him, you will learn to love your husband and he will learn to love you.
  • I know you love your DH – just as I do – But love him more by giving him to the Lord. I’m not saying “Let go and Let God”… I am saying, take a step back… Put your life back in its proper place.. Put God above your self and your DH.. Ask God what he wants you to do.. Seek Him FIRST…
  • From the time we give our lives to God (justification), we go through a long period of sanctification. Learning how to be like Christ. Learning how to be whole. Until we reach glorification when meet Him face to face..

This is why it is imperative to focus on your relationship with The Lord..

Don’t make you DH an idol. He’s just a man.. I know emotions can take over. But you must start this process by changing YOUR heart.

SHARE:

If you have been on this journey for awhile, what encouragement, wisdom and insights would you share with wives who are just beginning and are feeling overwhelmed and frustrated as they try to learn all of these new things about becoming godly wives?  What do you wish you had known when you first started?

I may use some of your comments and wisdom in other posts. This is exactly the kind if thing that will bless so many other wives. 🙂 Thanks for your willingness to share!

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24 thoughts on “A Wife Shares What She Is Learning in Biblical Marital Counseling

  1. I keep seeing people say work on yourself, but I am not sure exactly what that means. I have bought hundreds of books on marriage and ALWAYS tried to put them into practice: greet him with a smile, pray scripture for him, send him notes.. The latest one I am going through is the Respect Dare and I am already doing ( or not doing depending on the dare) almost all of them.. I’ve never talked about my husband to anyone. I’ve never said anything disprectful ( How could I hurt him like that. Plus he would be mad at me and I can’t take that.) So what do I need to work on… I just wish my husband was happy. Other than that he is a perfect husband. There isn’t anything I would change. He is a great man, but so tired and weary….

    I read my Bible several times a day. I am currently memorizing Psalm 27… What else should I be doing and how do you know if it is enough??? Or if you are doing it correctly?

    1. Hi Elizabeth,
      If you don’t mind, I will try and answer your questions from my perspective. I have been on this journey for almost 2 years now and this is what I would say… Working on you doesn’t mean your actions towards your husband. That’s not to say that all you are doing is not good, but that’s still you kind of working on him-You trying to change him.
      “Working on you” in my mind means taking your focus off your husband and concentrating on your relationship with God. It means trusting God to work on your husband being in the hard place he’s in right now. From what it sounds like, he is at peace within himself right now. In my own marriage so often I feel like I am the cause of his unhappiness but I have had to realize that many of the struggles and unhappiness my own husband experiences have nothing to do with me. It can be really hard for a wife to feel powerless but that’s where your power comes into focusing with God and seeking God for your own peace and letting God have him. If he senses you trying to fix him, that probably speaks disrespect to him more and makes him feel even less like a man or like a failure which is a huge thing that guys struggle with.
      I guess the bottom line action I would encourage you with is to emotionally let go of trying to make him happy. Instead of doing things to speak love to him, reassure him that whatever he’s going through you’re there, you believe in him, “he can do it”, etc… And then give God the space to do the real work.
      Press on sister…you are not alone in your journey. Find your peace with God.

      1. A quick ps to that… You will know that you are “doing it correctly” when you feel the peace that it is out of your hands. It’s not so much about what you can “do” – it’s about a heart attitude of trusting God and giving him the power back.

      2. Thanks Emily! I needed that too. My husband doesn’t seem happy either much of the time. I haven’t thought about that he senses that I am trying to fix him.

    2. (Posted under the wrong comment, sorry! This is meant for Elizabeth’s post at 7:34am)

      I just read Psalm 27 today too! In fact, it was the only chapter I read.

      I’m just starting out recently on the whole ‘work on me’ and most of that working isn’t so much ‘what do I do’ but about the heart I have towards my husband and the attitude I hold about him and about life on a daily basis, moment by moment. When I lose my joy, it doesn’t matter how much I seem to knock off the checks on my checklist. Ultimately, changing US is not in the hopes of manipulating change in someone else. When we change ourselves from the heart outward, oftentimes the result is more harmony and peace and joy in the home but in the end we are responsible to God for our heart and behaviors and it’s at that point when we examine our hearts and know that we’re right before God and our hearts are pure and we’re living in integrity – we can continue to pray and pour out our hearts concerning our spouses but the Holy Spirit is the One who changes us completely. Yes, we have an important role in our marriage, vital even – but ultimately heart choices and patterns of behavior are individual choices.

  2. Thanks Emily, but how does God let you know you are doing it correctly??? He just seems pretty silent.

    1. In my experience (and this is not 100% correct but I would say more times than not –) God is silent when there something blocking you from him. Usually when that is the case you need to search your heart and repent. If I may be so bold, it seems that you’ve made your husband’s happiness an idol. Additionally I would say that without knowing it, you may be trying to play God in his life and fix him the way that only God can. I would start by confessing those things and asking God to forgive you. You will know you are “doing it right” when you feel the peace of trusting God in your heart. I know there are times when I am strongly feel God’s confirmation that I’m in the right place, but sometimes I just feel a peace in my spirit though I continue to feel his silence.

      When you trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, the peace that passes understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. (that’s my terrible paraphrase but just go with it!😄)

      1. Emily C,
        I used to make my husband’s happiness an idol, too. Which probably sounds so weird considering how disrespectful I was. If I knew he was upset, I was A MESS!

        There are times when our husbands have issues that have nothing to do with us. When my husband is in a bad mood, which is pretty rare these days, I can easily get thrown and assume that I must have done something wrong to cause his bad mood.

        Sometimes, there are other things that can get our men down.

        I have a post about this!

        A Wife Responds Beautifully to Her Husband’s Bad Mood

        1. Melissa,

          Here is a post I wrote for the single ladies about when a man is in a funk. That can be really tricky! It is hard for me to know at first if I have done something wrong or my husband is just in a bad mood.

          We dealt with lice 2 summers ago. Here is what I did!

          I suggest making a mental note about that he would prefer for you to just handle dinner yourself from this point on. That is my personal idea, anyway, for whatever it is worth.

          THANK THIS MAN for cleaning up! Then allow him to own his anger. And try to do better this coming week if possible with cleaning to show him that you do respect his requests and desires for the house to be clean.

          I can’t sleep when Greg snores either. There is no way I can just get used to it! I have to have total silence, too. I can tell you that sleep deprived people tend to get pretty cranky! I think that he is asking you for something that is impossible here. You could pray about saying something like, “I know you really hate wearing the CPAP. But I am such a horrible sleeper, and it is the most amazing gift to me when you wear it. If you don’t wear it, and I can’t sleep, I will have to go to the couch. I will be no use to you if I am completely sleep deprived. I don’t want to leave. But I do need to sleep. I hope you won’t mind wearing the CPAP so we can be together. I love to be with you!”

          Much love!
          April

    2. Even the great prophets in the OT sometimes had to wait for a word from the Lord. The idea that God will always be talking to you if you are in the right place with him is just not Biblically accurate. Pre-sin, Adam and Eve waited in the garden until God came to walk and talk with them. If there is sin that you know you should be repenting of, then do so immediately. If not, just try to be encouraged that God will give you that feeling of closeness when he chooses to do so. Periods of silence are a testing of the faith. Adore him and rest upon his faithfulness and his promise that he will truly never leave you, even when you can’t see his hand working, when you can’t hear his voice speaking, and when you are discouraged.

  3. The Hoy Spirit, is youcomforter, are you in tune with His voice? Is your husband a man of God? Do you go to God for answers through prayer, and wait for an answer from HIM? God can speak through anyone or anything at any given time. Do you seek Him first? Are you asking your head, your husband about how he feels about your behavoir and the choices you make. Are you allowing your husband to give you positive critisim for your growth? Even if he isn’t saved he can still help you, are you and your husband close companions?

  4. Sharon…I am having trouble hearing God. I’m not sure if its the sin I didn’t know was hidden. I love that you said God can speak through anyone or anything. What ways have you heard Him speak to you? I’m trying to figure out how to hear Him for direction and guidance in this journey.

    1. Hey PLM,
      God is so awesome He speaks so clearly when you ask Him a question, He comes not always when you want HIm too, but it’s always when you really really need Him. He said whoever seeks me diligently will find me. I actually experienced this not long ago, a couple times, it was like instead of figuring stuff out on my own, or jumping to assumptions, He taught me to come to Him first. I hear Him alot, only because its a relationship that I have with Him. Whenever I put stuff in my own hands, like my quick deceitful assumptions of things I always have it wrong. So when I decide to slow down and pray He intervenes. Sometimes we can reject His answers, or choose to put stuff in our hands and we WON’T Hear Him because our own thoughts cloud Him out. And sometimes He allows us to fall so He can show us to
      Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
      And lean not on your own understanding;
      6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
      And He shall direct your paths.

      This something we all have to do continually, give every situation to Him especially whenever your not sure, and He will answer you. Or the Holy Spirit will direct you in that still small voice. I always pray and ask God to remove every high thought and everything that is loud in my mind so I can hear Him clearly, He actually helped me out in this and I’m able to Hear Him.
      He said ask and you’ll receive. He is so powerful!

      I hear Him guiding me all day, because my prayer is that He direct my steps. I hear Him lead me into my daily routine, everyday. And I had to keep asking God for the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit didn’t just come to me after just asking Him a couple times, it took months. The Holy Spirit keeps me from sin. I hope all this helps, feel free to ask anything else if not.

      1. Some ways I have heard God, is when I need encouragement, someone may encourage me all of a sudden, and seem to know my whole situation even though they didn’t, that just let’s me know that God knows and sees and is helping me through whatever it is. One night I was so down because of my own faults, and God encouraged me that very next morning, so I could keep fighting the fight, It was a message someone sent me, like you know that just has to be God. Some lady prophesied to me when I was really going through some tuff situations, I just had so many doubts- she knew I was stressed and told my husband that I was stressed, I didn’t say a word, she just start saying all kind of things encouraging both my hubby and I. I didn’t look stressed God knew and wanted my hubby to know though. Alot of times I hear God speak through my husband giving me wisdom-from what I prayed about-that really blows me away. His voice came from developing a relationship, He’s just there for me. You can have this too. I pray you do. His voice is so sweet. I didn’t understand this a long time ago, and just kept asking Him to speak to me, He finally did one day and it hasn’t stopped.

  5. I, too, think I am doing what I need to do, but my heart is deceitful. I have ongoing arguments with myself. I want a Damascus Road experience. I want my husband to change. You can see that it is still all about me!
    I’ve only been coming around for a few weeks, but in that time God has revealed a few things to me. He showed me that I have too many locks on the door of my heart, so I gave Him the Master Key. He showed me that instead of trying to claw my way up the slippery, muddy river bank, I need to relax and float in His River of Living Water. He reminds me that He will never leave nor forsake me if I stick close to Him. He calls me to Him with a still, small voice that is difficult to hear above the noise going on between my ears. I need to trust His goodness and love.
    I’m trying to work through the Respect Dare but it’ll prob’ly take me 40 weeks! Day 1 Expectations were all about me; Day 2 Childhood Scars had me in tears; Day 3 Report Card I totally failed. Pride keeps rearing it’s ugly head in ways that I don’t recognize right away, and I still find myself cursing at the altar of my idol instead of glorifying God.
    This is not a Damascus Road experience by any means. It’s more like walking through the valley of the shadow, but God is changing me little by little, shining the light of His truth onto my life, and if it’s me who’s dying to Self, then it’s a good thing.
    Thanks for turning me onto David Platt. He is helping me see who God really is. Good thing He is so patient with us 🙂

    1. Marcia,
      Wow! You have an incredible way of describing this journey – such vivid word pictures! I may have to ask you to write a post for me about the beginning of this road! 🙂

      It is ok if it takes you 40 weeks to do the Respect Dare. It is better to go slowly and really dig down and get to the bottom of the issues than to rush through it in 40 days. 🙂

      I am so excited about what God is doing in your heart – and I am THRILLED that you gave Him the Master Key!!!!!!

      MUCH LOVE and a BIG HUG, my sweet sister!

      1. Thank you, April. You have my address 🙂

        The “word pictures” are how God has begun speaking to me — just the flash of an impression in my mind — He does not always use the language we might expect.

        He has already started using the Master Key on my heart. I know He is at work in me because the tears are beginning to run down my cheeks. 🙂

  6. Sharon…
    Thank you for explaining how you hear God speak. I actually had 2 devotionals this morning that had things that “jumped out” at me. Things I have been praying about or have been anxious about.
    I still don’t know what I’m “listening for” though. I know its not a voice, but how does He guide me when I hand Him the keys. I try to think of scriptures throughout my day. I may say things to Him when I can while I’m working. But, I’m not really sure, really. I’ve been so busy telling Him what I think He should. This is new territory. I would love all my encounters to be through people, but I don’t get alot of that during the day. I want to be close to hear Him whisper, but I don’t understand.

    Marcia…

    “He showed me that instead of trying to claw my way up the slippery, muddy river bank, I need to relax and float in His River of Living Water”

    LOVED THIS!!!
    I have tried to “be still” for the past few days to just recharge and renew my mind. I have noticed a decrease in my anxiousness and worry. Its still there, but not to the extreme. I have tried to take negative thoughts captive. That enemy is so quick sometimes!! But, “relax and float in His River of LIving Water” is almost another statement that jumped out at me like my devotions this morning.

    Thanks Ladies!!

    1. PLM,

      Seeing things jump out at you – is definitely a way God speaks. Sometimes, He speaks in a “voice.” Other times He speaks through Christian songs, Scripture, other believers, your husband – He is able to speak to you through almost anything. At first, it is hard to hear Him. It gets easier with practice, time and as you totally submit and yield to Him, and stop listening to the enemy and your sinful nature. Check out My Demon for more about that!

      When you do begin to hear Him, His voice will first probably bring conviction and grief over your sin, but at the same time, you will soon begin to have peace as you obey Him. As you seek Him with all your heart, He promises that He will be found by you! Jeremiah 29:11-13

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