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I Resented Making Lunch for My Husband

 

I used to resent making my husbandโ€™s lunches – even though I was the one who offered to do it and Greg never really asked me to do this for him. ย I made a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for him on the days he worked, sometimes with an apple, too ย – which was all he really wanted. But he never ever made lunch for me when I worked. (Insert my old scowling facial expressions here.) Of course, I don’t think I really asked him to – except maybe once – and it was with so much contempt. ๐Ÿ™ย Sometimes I even threw some verbal barbs at him because of my bitterness over the issue – and many other little things about which I cherished resentment.

Now I have a very different attitude. SO THANKFUL! God has radically changed my heart.

Now โ€“ I thank God that He has blessed me with Greg. He is a gift to me. Marriage is a gift. I get to be Greg’s wife. I get to be married to him. I realize that this life is short and that tomorrow is not guaranteed. I am thankful to have ways to bless him โ€“ even something as small as making his lunch for him. I have spoken with enough widows to know that if something were to happen to my husband tonight โ€“ I would sure miss him! And I would WISH I could make his lunches again or clean the bathroom for him again or pick up a pair of dirty socks or whatever. Now I give with a joyful spirit โ€“ not out of duty or resentment โ€“ but because I am filled up with Christ and want simply to bless Greg โ€“ expecting nothing in return.

I also notice that Greg does tons of things for me and our family without resentment. He takes care of all the yard work ย – I don’t help at all with that. He does all of the massive renovation projects around our house. I don’t contribute anything other than helping to sweep up or helping with the painting sometimes. He goes under the house when the sewage line is messed up or the garbage disposal line becomes disconnected. He handles the vehicle maintenance. All without one iota of resentment. And that was even before God changed my attitude.

If I am giving with resentment in my heart – that is a big problem. Something needs to change! Either my giving or my attitude.

  • Do not eat the bread of a man who is stingy;ย do not desire his delicacies,ย for he is like one who is inwardly calculating.ย โ€œEat and drink!โ€ he says to you,ย but his heart is not with you. Proverbs 23:5-7
  • โ€œThe King will reply, โ€˜Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.โ€™” Matthew 25:40
  • The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 2 Cor. 9:6-7

I had no idea that I was being stingy or that God counted the way I treated Greg (and others) as if I was doing those things and having those same attitudes toward Him. The way I treat others and my attitudes toward them is a tangible indicator of my love and attitude toward God. I was a reluctant giver. I gave with strings attached – with lots of expectations for what I wanted in return. That is not God’s kind of love.

  • Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.ย Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

 

Most days, I make Greg’s lunch. However, if I don’t have time to make lunch for Greg these days, I simply respectfully say something like, “Honey, I’m crunched for time today. Would you please take care of your lunch today? Thanks!”

God spent a lot of time with me going through my thought life. He showed me how I was listening to the enemy โ€“ the accuser โ€“ about Greg. And how when I held on to resentment and bitterness, I opened the door of my heart to the enemy โ€“ allowing him to come make a fortress in my heart. I let him use my thoughts, my tongue, my attitudes, my words, and my actions to try to destroy Greg. I didnโ€™t realize the source of my thoughts at the time. I thought it was just my own thinking โ€“ not temptations from Satan. But all of that ugly sin poisoned me, separated me from fellowship with God, and destroyed my husband and our intimacy on many levels. NOT WORTH IT!

I invite you to check out a few posts about these kinds of issues and we can definitely talk more about them together:

As a woman who knows Christ and who submits to Him as LORD, I donโ€™t have to be controlled by my sinful flesh anymore. Praise God for Romans 6! I am now dead to my old sinful self and to sin and this world! I can choose to invite Godโ€™s Spirit to control me completely. Then I donโ€™t have to be a slave to sinful thoughts and lies of the enemy. I can recognize those poison thoughts and shoot them down in the power of Godโ€™s Spirit in me and resist that temptation and fully submit every thought to Jesus.

As you allow Christ to radically transform your heart, mind, and soul โ€“ you wonโ€™t even have to think those resentful, bitter, disrespectful thoughts toward your husband, God, or anyone else ย when you have repented of them and invite God to teach you His amazing wisdom and His love and grace.

  • โ€œThe only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us, and carry out, in our ordinary conduct; the insignficances of daily life are the importances and the tests of eternity, because they prove what really is the spirit that possesses us.โ€
    โ€• Andrew Murray, Humility
  • โ€œHow different our standard is from Christ’s. We ask how much a man gives. Christ asks how much he keeps.โ€
    โ€• Andrew Murray

101 thoughts on “I Resented Making Lunch for My Husband

  1. Amen and Amen! I am currently working on my thought life. It is in need of a major overhaul! I am guilty of letting Satan take residence in my heart far too much. It really does come out in my thoughts. Such a downward spiral. Keeping them captive to Christ is to way to go!
    ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Cara,

      So glad this was helpful. ๐Ÿ™‚ That is an extremely important discipline for us to learn in God’s power. If we are not taking our thoughts captive for Christ, we are totally at the mercy of our sinful nature and the enemy.

  2. Thank you so much for this post. I started my journey just recently and it’s been hard. Now that school started, I was in this position just a couple of weeks ago. Your posts are helping me so much, because I learn that I am not alone in this and that it is possible to change.

    1. Alexandra,

      As we seek God wholeheartedly and allow Him to change us – YES! Change is very possible! ๐Ÿ™‚ If you need to talk about things, please let me know. This community is very supportive for those who are seeking to grow and who are struggling. You will find prayer, encouragement, and edification here, I believe. ๐Ÿ™‚

      How may we pray for you?

      1. Thank you so much for extending a hand (or two for prayers). My husband and I have had some rocky times. We are both short-tempered and want things done our way. A couple of years ago, he joined a men’s group at our church and little by little I started noticing a change in his ways. He was more patient, more helpful and caring. So I wanted to do the same for the sake of our marriage. We both work full-time jobs and have 4 children so life is hectic. I’ve demanded more and more from him without appreciating what he already does for us. I resented making lunch for him while he was working on the computer. But he cooks dinner for us every night. I’m working on controlling my emotions and I am grateful for your posts because I relate to them and they make me reflect on my reactions. thank you!

      2. Hello April

        I have been reading your site, The Forgiven Wife and Lori Alexander’s, “Always Learning” blog for a little under a year. My issue is this- I do not even know where to begin to find the path to knowing God the way you and countless other women on these sites do. I am stuck dead in my tracks when it comes to being submissive, I am overwhelmed with automatic pilot behaviors and I have no idea if I know when God is speaking to me. These points barely scratch the surface. All I do know is God exists, He loves me and He is getting tired of waiting for me to get it together.
        I received the book “Love and Respect” a few years ago as an engagement gift, but have not read it because the cover of the books suggests that woman find love more desirable than being respected. I do not feel that way, so I barely opened the book. I recently purchased two other books, “A Woman’s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year” and “Fervent.” I have also bought a new King James Version journaling bible, a few art supplies and a small journal for prayers. Even with all of this I STILL don’t know what to do.
        I realize it is a lot but could you or anyone else give me a small (or large) bit of guidance? I am feeling hopelessly overwhelmed and do not want this feeling to sabotage my need and desire to know my Father.

        Gratefully with peace and love,
        Krista

        1. Krista,

          If it is okay, maybe we could begin with a “spiritual check up” so I can get a pulse on where you are right now? ๐Ÿ™‚

          1. How do you believe a person can be made right with God to have a relationship with Him?

          2. What is your relationship with Christ like at this time? How much time do you spend with Him? What do you pray for? What do you read?

          3. What do you most desire in your relationship with Him?

          4. What are your greatest fears?

          5. What are your greatest desires that would bring the most happiness to you?

          6. What are the biggest issues in your marriage, from your perspective, at this point?

          7. Are you dealing with any severe issues on either your side of the marriage, or your husband’s? Mental illness, abuse, drug/alcohol addictions, unrepentant major sin, adultery, etc…?

          8. Are you safe?

          Much love to you!

          1. April,

            I cannot tell you enough how blessed I feel that you took the time to respond to me. I read your admin note stating that you needed to curb your time back in order to concentrate more on God and your family. With your decrease online you still found the time to reach out to me. You cannot imagine how much that meant to me.

            I would also like to apologise for just responding now. Some of the questions were REALLY hard for me to answer and required a lot of thought and a few tears. ๐Ÿ™‚

            1. The answer to this would seem pretty straightforward yet I have absolutely no idea what it might be. I have been trying to find an answer to this for 1 ยฝ days and I consistently come up with nothing.

            2. I just don’t know how I would describe my relationship with God and sometimes I do not feel like I have one. I talk to Him a lot but I do not know if my conversations would be considered praying. I do not say the Our Father or Hail Mary etc. if that is what you are referring to as prayer. I hate to ask God for things and when I do it is almost always for someone else. I feel like He thinks that every time somebody speaks to him it’s because they want something. I hate feeling that way so I usually just have a conversation and tell Him how I am feeling or how I wish that I could handle things this way or that and not ask if he could do this, that, and the other for me. The whole thing plays out like I’m having coffee with a parent and I do make sure to thank Him for all things. My closing to our talks are always, “please watch over everyone , please forgive everyone and thank you for everything. Amen.” Right now I read your blog and two others, the Forgiven Wife and Always Learning. Also, I just received two books in the mail that I have barely begun. They are โ€œA Womanโ€™s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Yearโ€ and โ€œFervent.โ€

            3. I want to feel the peace and calm that I know exists through being close with Him.

            4. My greatest fear is death and it is on an epic scale. There are days that the thought of death and dying completely consumes me and often times is the reason why I will do or not do something. The real conundrum here and what I am sure many people will and have said is IF you believe in God you should not be afraid. When a person says that to me I start to question my beliefs and it makes me VERY sad and terribly guilty. I DO believe in God. I just cannot control this deep seeded fear. It is really awful.

            5. My greatest desires are to know our Lord and be confident and comfortable with the relationship I will have with him. On a personal level I would like to see a lot of changes in my marriage. We have A LOT of work to do.

            6. My husband suffers with bipolar II and that has completely consumed us on every level since last Nov. I know and understand that you are not certified in any way to give advice etc. on matters of mental illness. I would like to ask that if there are any women who read this and have a spouse that is bipolar could they share how they get through the difficult days? Again, I am not seeking any type of treatment through this correspondence. Bobby is currently in therapy and will be put back on his medications in a few weeks. There is definitely a light at the end of the tunnel.

            7. Not only are we dealing with Bobby’s mental illness but there is also some drug addiction behaviour with both of us. This involves us not always taking our prescribed medications as indicated. Also, Bobby is a recovering alcoholic and has not drank in four years.

            8. I do not always feel safe when Bobby is having a bipolar episode. He has not hit me but if he is not regulated on his medicine soon I can see it happening. There are certain things that I have learned to do to stay safe when I see an episode starting, however, I do not know how much longer I can keep it together.

            I do want to reiterate that I fully understand that you can not counsel on a few things that I have wrote about. Honestly, those issues were not the reason I reached out so I do hope you will not feel sad that you cannot assist me with those things.

            I am so grateful for your time and genuine concern for me.
            Hugs, peace and love,
            Krista

          2. Krista,

            I am so thankful you took the time to really think about these things and try to answer them. This is how you can begin to do some serious soul searching to uncover the root of the issues that are going on. ๐Ÿ™‚

            1. Well – this is a big concern, for sure. If you aren’t sure how to even have a relationship with Christ and how to be right with Him, that is priority number one, my friend!

            A few assignments that I believe will be really instrumental in helping you to get on solid footing would be:
            – listen to David Platt’s Secret Church series, “Who Is God?” It is on youtube or at http://www.radical.net.
            – read Lies Women Believe and the Truth That Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss (skip the part about children if you would like to)
            – check out Identifying the Lies We Have Embraced – one of my posts
            – If you have time listen to David Platt’s Secret Church series on being a disciple. Or read John Piper’s site http://www.desiringgod.org about salvation or discipleship.

            2. I am seeing some really big red flags that tell me that you may need to really examine your fixed beliefs about who God is. When we don’t understand who He is – when we don’t really know His true nature and character – it becomes impossible to have a close relationship with Him. The exercises I suggested in the last section will help you to identify any lies you have believed about God and help you begin to tear out the wrong thinking so you can replace it with God’s truth from the Bible and rebuild your life on His truth alone. ๐Ÿ™‚

            4. There is a reasonable fear of death. No one wants to die. Well, no one who is in a healthy place spiritually and emotionally wants to die. But then there is an unhealthy fear. I can relate to this kind of fear. I had a similar fear of Greg dying and my children dying for a long time. The closer you are to God, the more you know Him – the real Him – and trust Him, the more your fears will melt away. Not that you would be excited to suffer and die, but you will have a very strong sense of peace that God will be with you and glory awaits you after death – and there is a knowing and resting in God’s sovereignty that He knows the right time and He will never forsake you. You can have peace about this. Not that you would be purposely reckless and careless or irresponsible. But that you can move forward with what God desires you to do and that you can face the possibility of death without unhealthy fear. Does that make sense? The closer you are to Him, the more your perspective will shift from this world to eternity and the more “the things of this world grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.” You will know where you stand with God. You will know who you are in Christ – your identity in Christ (which is found in Romans 8 for those who belong to Jesus). And you will be confident in Him and His love – even in the face of death and even in the face of trials. There may be times you have to wrestle over some of these kinds of fears in prayer – but then you can rest in God’s love, sovereignty, and peace. I had to do quite a bit of wrestling in prayer to get to the point where I really trusted God with my deepest fears. I thought I trusted God for so many years, but the anxiety, worry, and fear in my life showed that my trust was not actually in God. It was in myself and in trying to be in control or trying to make others meet my deepest needs. I have a number of posts I can share with you when you are ready. ๐Ÿ™‚

            6. As a pharmacist, I am pretty familiar with bi-polar. It is extremely challenging at times. For sure! Do you have a support group that you go to to help with this? Or have you looked up any online? I wonder if there might even be some Christian forums?

            7. Thank you for being honest about the prescription addictions. I see that a lot, too, in my area. Sometimes people think that prescriptions are safe – but there are certainly risks, especially with narcotics and controlled substances. A resource that may be helpful is Celebrate Recovery. It is a Christian based group that meets in local churches, usually, and provides support for those recovering from drug and alcohol addictions, and even other addictions, like rage.

            8. Have you, your husband, and his doctor talked about what you can do when he is manic or not thinking clearly? It could be wise to agree to a specific plan ahead of time together with the doctor and with your husband’s consent – so that you know what to do when things are spinning out of control. If you are truly not safe, you may need a plan to be able to leave. And there may need to be a plan about what to do with his credit card and finances, maybe even with the computer or internet access.

            My greatest prayer for you is for you to experience the Lordship of Christ and intimacy with Him. He can absolutely heal your heart, mind, and soul! He can give you a whole new spirit and new Life. As you trash anything that is not true and rebuild your belief system on God’s Word and His truth and you seek Him and yield to His control, giving up the throne of your heart to Him – He can heal you. And then He can also give you the wisdom you need in these difficult situations.

            I’m here when you are ready to talk some more.

            Much love to you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Wow. You truly hit the nail on the head. I was like that, and I woke up this morning really tired from work and was about to make a face and then boom!!!! I was like, “No, devil, I am so thankful for my husband, I am so thankful I get to make his coffee and lunch today. I love him so much.” Praise God for you Sister, you spoke to my heart and life today. God bless you..

    1. I like this phrase “I get to….” !!! I read something on a blog a couple of weeks ago and the woman suggested changing our thinking from “I have to” to “I get to” on tasks we tend to dislike. I really struggle with enjoying to cook. I was making banana bread the other day for my family and God reminded me of that phrase. As soon as I thought of it, I literally smiled and felt like a different person. When you say “I get to” it reminds you to be grateful for the fact that you even have a family to cook for (or a husband to make lunch for!)

      Thank you, April! I am so thankful for you & what God is doing through your ministry. Reading the dialogue on your other post about friendships and such and seeing women start to understand the ways that we put distance between ourselves and our husbands just made made me feel a lot of gratitude for you and your ministry.

      1. Growing up, my single mom didn’t put much time or effort into preparing food. She barely cooked at all. Now I’m married to a husband who loves three square meals each day, all of which must include meat. (I would be fine with a breakfast bar on the go.)

        My husband has taught me a lot in the kitchen and I enjoy coming to an extent, but sometimes I find myself wishing I/we were doing other things… often more “spiritual” things like studying the Bible or praying, especially because my husband likes for me to watch TV with him as well (I never gave much time to entertainment before we got married) and there are only 24 hours in the day.

        So thank you, April, for this post and to ContentinChrist for this comment because it really is a blessing to get to serve our families (and God) in all kinds of big and seemingly small and practical ways. I am truly blessed that I get to serve at all!

        1. Growing Up Spiritually,

          Thanks for sharing this! I was just thinking as I read your story – that you both had different “food cultures” when you were growing up, it sounds like. And therefore, different expectations about food. Made me smile when you said your husband “loves three square meals each day, all of which must include meat.” ๐Ÿ™‚

          I spent so much time earlier in our marriage wishing Greg and I were doing more spiritual things, too. My husband also loves to watch TV to unwind and absolutely adores football. I used to tell him that we should be reading the Bible together or praying together. One night a year or two after God had opened my eyes to my sin, I was in the study reading the Bible and praying and talking to God about how much I felt the whole family should be reading the Bible and praying – and I heard God clearly say to me, “Go cuddle with your family and watch TV with them.” I started to protest because I just knew we should all be having a Bible study together and praying together. But I obeyed and went and cuddled with Greg and the kids and just enjoyed them. You know, that is a spiritual blessing, too. To just tangibly enjoy your husband and family, to relax with them at times, to bond with them in the way that means a lot to them, and to be a friend, extending your love. ๐Ÿ™‚

          I have some posts about some of these other issues, too, if you are interested. Check out, “I Wish My Husband Would Pray with Me More – Part 1″ and “I Wish My Husband Would Pray with Me More – Part 2.”

          And you may watch my video on my Youtube channel, April Cassidy, “My Husband Watches TV Too Much!”

      2. Love that attitude, too. “I get to” is a much better approach. ๐Ÿ™‚ Helps us remember to be thankful. And I am thrilled to hear about how just that one change helped to transform your way of thinking!!

        I’m grateful to God that He has given us this place to share and grow together. What an incredibly priceless gift He has given to us! I am so honored that He allows me to be part of His work here. Never could have imagined this in December of 2008 when God first opened my eyes to my sin and I began this journey with Him. He had much bigger plans in mind than just to heal my marriage and to get me in right relationship with Him. What an amazing God we serve!

  4. I have been reading for a few months and your blog has been encouraging… and so biblical, which is refreshing. I had to comment here…

    I have always despised packing my husbands lunch, (for most of our 7 years of marriage I’ve been a stay at home mom, so it’s a fair trade really) But, 2 years ago, my father-in-law died of cancer (only in his 50’s). Anyway, my mother-in-law gave DH his dad’s lunch box that is worn and marked with his name. Now every time I pack my husband’s lunch and feel like complaining in my heart, I can’t help but think about how my dear MIL would do ANYTHING to be packing her husbands lunch again. It’s been a very good perspective changer for me.

    I thank God for reminders like that, and pray He will keep my thoughts from going back to my selfish old ways.

  5. hello! I am new to this blog. I have been married 18 years and my husband informed me on March 15 that he did not love me anymore he no longer wanted to try to salvage the marriage, he was only staying for the kids. I have been standing for my marriage since that day showing him unconditional love, trying to be a submissive wife. It has been 5 1/2 months and I am weary, I asked him yesterday what his plans were and they have not changed he still does not love me and will leave eventually but shows no signs of that happening anytime soon. At what point do you know when it is time to let go? I feel so weary and tired, I have put him in gods hands. I just don’t feel like this is healthy for me and the kids. How much longer do I have to hear “I don’t love you”, I feel numb and pain at the same time.

    1. Sonia,

      Such a painful situation! ๐Ÿ™ How my heart breaks for all of you.

      Are you receiving any godly counseling for yourself, at least?

      What is your definition of trying to show him love and trying to be submissive at this point?

      Are either of you dealing with any mental health issues, major unrepentant sin, addictions, infidelity, or abuse?

      Would you be interested in doing a spiritual check-up with me? I want to be sure you are overflowing with Christ and abiding in Him – completely filled up with Him – so that you can clearly hear God’s voice and His wisdom and prompting.

      Sending you the biggest hug, my dear sister!

  6. Thank you for writing this post in response to my question!!! Ever since I started to treat my husband with more respect, we don’t have any huge issues anymore. However, there are times that I struggle with these little type of issues that can be turned into big issues with resentment. It’s very hard to break old thinking habits, but it can be done! It’s all in your attitude. I also like the “I get to…” way of thinking. Also, so important to focus on the positive.

  7. We all give and receive love in different ways. I learned a lot reading the book “the 5 love languages” For example, my love language is physical touch. I feel loved when I am touched.

    My wife’s love language is “Acts of Service”. She feels love when someone does something for her. The difficulty is that we tend to use our own love language to try to convey love to our partner.

    So my wife makes me lunch thinking she is conveying love to me. It’s an effort for her but as I don’t perceive it as love then eventually she feels unloved because I am not responding to her message of love.

    Likewise if I use physical touch to try and convey to her that I love her, she just feels her space is invaded. Groped is probably the starkest word to use. Yet for her to “grope’ me would be great. (I’m not saying here that I want to be groped by random people. Just my wife thank you ๐Ÿ™‚ )

    So the take home here is that we need to try to speak our partners love language.

  8. This is a wonderful post, April. I am very grateful for the reminder of God blessing one’s generosity. Hubby can be that way to a fault with finances, but I do my best to let God’s word lead about being a “cheerful wife to a cheerful giver” lol.

    1. Joanne,

      So glad this was helpful. Yes, God blesses our personal generosity. Not always in the ways we may expect. But in the best ways. ๐Ÿ™‚ He blesses us spiritually and with greater spiritual maturity and growth and closeness to Him. So thankful for that!

      Makes me smile thinking about us all being cheerful wives and cheerful givers. What wonderful blessings we can be to our families!

      1. We try, April. We’ve been challenged to help our son’s friend by opening our home for a few weeks. Please pray for God to open doors to a safe and stable place for him.

  9. For years, I had a similar issue with my husband. Mine was a daily coffee, sometimes, he would want one at night too! I HATED with a passion making coffee. In my head I was like how hard is it for him to make his own coffee?? I already have tons of things to do to get us out of the house in the morning AND I HaVE TO prepare his coffee too?? I would say to the Lord and to my husband: Will I die making coffees for my husband? I mean sometimes
    I would make it with such angriness that I wished he would not drink it because I made it in such a bad mood. So I prayed to God that He either make me enjoy making his coffee till death set us apart or remove my husband’s desire for coffee, at least the night one.

    So over time, every time I had to make coffee, I would pray over and over again for God to help me enjoy making his coffee. Slowly my husband began to ask for coffee fewer
    and fewer times. Now, he drinks coffe like 3 times a week at nights, something I can deal with. Sometimes, he sees I have been so busy he makes it on his own. God has done so much for me through prayer ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Yasmin,

      I’m so glad you decided to pray about this. And I love that God changed your heart – interesting how eventually the situation changed, as well. Hmm!

      Thank you for sharing this, dear sister! ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. I need advice again, April. My husband still doesn’t want to have sex after me working on myself and my relationship with the Lord for 9 months. I haven’t brought it up, but I can tell by the way he purposely avoids touching me in that way that he’s not wanting it. Our relationship is so much better. Not perfect but better. I don’t know what to do or how to approach it if I even should. I know I have the Lord no matter what and that’s the most important thing, but sex is a close second. I need this to be fixed, but I also don’t want to rush ahead. Do most marriages end up whole sexually again? Do some husband’s never want it again for the rest of their life? I’m just not sure how I can bear that. What do I do?

    1. Michelle,

      I personally believe that your situation will be healed with a bit more time. I know your husband was very wounded from a number of things. It can take a long time for a man to feel safe again after all of that. But the fact that the relationship is so much better is AWESOME! That is such a testament to God’s power at work!

      How does he respond if you were to touch him?

      How are you doing spiritually?

      Are you aware if there are any medical issues or porn addiction issues or anything with him now?

      What do you believe God is prompting you to do at this point? Do you believe you are hearing His voice clearly now?

      Much love to you!

      1. My walk with the Lord is good. I know He has changed my heart greatly. The old feelings surface occassionally but it’s less frequent and I’m able to exercise self control. So my husband is touching me affectionately which is great! But not sexually. If he grazes my chest by accident in bed I feel him pull away. I don’t really initiate any touch because I think he doesn’t want me to so I’m at his mercy. He kisses me which is wonderful! But it never goes anywhere. He never really wanted sex with me that much after the first six months of marriage. He has had issues with porn in the past and I feel in my heart that he is looking at it again, but I don’t know. I felt from the beginning that I should wait a year. I’m willing to do that but it is getting harder and I’m feeling angrier and more let down. I know he feels like a failure in every area of his life but I can’t change that and he lacks motivation to change it for himself. I have to suffer with him for his choices. I don’t know what to do and I don’t hear God telling me anything much about this. I worry that it won’t get better. And I worry that I can’t endure it.

        1. Michelle,

          When is the last time that you shared that it is hard for you to love him and desire him but not be able to share sexually with him? Has he acknowledged your pain? Or has he said anything about when he will be ready?

          I am thrilled that he is affectionate with you again. That is AWESOME! And he is not talking about divorce anymore, correct?

          Being married – yep. We do suffer with our spouses for their choices. And they suffer with us for ours, too.

          How long has it been since you talked about wanting to have a baby?

          1. In June I broke down and just said “I really miss our intimacy” he just said “I know that but I’m not ready”. At this point I’m so afraid of the rejection that I haven’t said anything. I don’t know what to say. He hates when I bring things up. He just likes to ignore every problem. He can’t deal with emotions. Whenever I’m feeling any kind of emotional he just completely turns his back on me. And the baby thing hasn’t even mentioned since the divorce threat. I feel like I’m not allowed to talk about it anymore. Ever. He’s not talking about divorce anymore but I feel like I’m one slip up away from him threatening me again.

          2. Michelle,

            Would you please remind me if y’all have had any counseling together or separately?

            If you haven’t mentioned it since June – it seems to me that it could be time to say something again – after much prayer and when you know that you are hearing God’s voice clearly.

            Do you feel you are prepared to handle things with Christ if your husband were to decide to leave? Does this fear motivate your behavior? Or do you feel that you are able to seek to please God and that if your husband decides to leave, you know you would be okay?

          3. We had counseling a few years ago but not this time. I know I will be ok if he leaves. I’m scared of how hard it will be to untangle our lives. I’m not going to lie sometimes I want that. To be free to find someone else. But I want to honor god more than anything and I know that’s not the right thing. I know that’s satan.
            If I say something I don’t know how to bring it up. I know he will be cold to me about it.

          4. Michelle,

            Have you practiced sharing your desires in a simple, humble, vulnerable, respectful, non-emotional, straight forward way?

            I can give you some examples to pray about if you would like. ๐Ÿ™‚

          5. I have practiced telling him when I’m hurt in a short respectful way and then dropping it. He’s responded well to that. I guess I have shared some desires that way too like wanting him to go to church with me. And I did that in June when I said I miss our intimacy.
            Oh and going back to the baby thing. Last month a friend face timed me at 10pm to tell me she’s pregnant. I tried to not crumble. I really did. He asked if I was ok and I lied and said yes. Then the tears came so I went in the bathroom alone to sob. He came and opened the door and I told him I needed to be alone. Not because I wanted to be but because I don’t feel allowed to have feelings around him. The next day he hugged me a couple times but didn’t say one word about. Then he got distant. I told him I felt that he was angry with me for having feelings and I didn’t think that was fair. He said he didn’t think that at all. So I let it go. That’s how things go. I need him and don’t feel allowed to ask for help. He turns his back on me and I feel like he’s mad.

          6. Michelle,

            I like how you have been practicing being vulnerable and authentic in a brief, respectful, rather unemotional way. Men tend to be able to hear us better when we approach them like that.

            They tend to do well when we are straightforward, clear, and respectful… like:

            – I would love to do X.
            – I don’t want to do Y.
            – I really like that.
            – I feel sad.
            – I am feeling afraid right now.
            – I’m feeling lonely.

            Then, sometimes, we can also add what we need or desire.

            “I’m feeling sad right now about something my friend just shared. You know what would really help me? Maybe a hug/a few minutes of cuddling together.”

            I am thrilled that your husband came to check on you! THAT IS AWESOME! You don’t have to lie that you are okay. It is okay to say you are feeling sad. You don’t have to elaborate about why in a situation like that. It sounds like your husband tried to show you love and empathy that night and the next day. I have a feeling that it is not your emotions that are the problem, it is likely only when he feels blamed or blasted by your emotions that may be the real issue.

            If you just share that you are sad and you let him hug you and you thank him for that. It sounds like he would be okay with that. He may have even been okay to hold you for awhile while you cried. It is also possible that he is trying to treat you respectfully to give you space to deal with your emotions, but sometimes when a man treats his wife respectfully, she may feel unloved.

            It is okay to say what you need or desire. “You know what would really help me feel better? I need a little time to cry by myself. I am going to be okay, I promise! But then after I cry, I would love to just sit with you. That would really help me feel loved and safe.”

          7. I will work on that. I think u are right about feeling blamed. I get into the trap of expecting him to ask me questions, to invite me to elaborate. I think that’s what went so terribly wrong with infertility I just wanted him to be sad with me. To say how much it sucked. To take some responsibility. To take some initiative. And he never did and I felt alone. I didn’t want to share with him that night because I knew he would just hug me silently when what I really want is for him to open up and grieve with me. Instead I feel like I’m the only one here who ever wanted children. I feel like he could care less. A hug is nice but validation is better.
            Praiseworthy moment was when I was having a bad day here with one of my daycare kids and he actually asked if I needed a hug. That actually was super cool.

          8. Michelle,

            I think it is very possible that when your husband goes to find you when you are upset and comes to offer you hugs when he knows you were crying the night before – that is how he is trying to show you love and how he is sharing your sadness. HE IS being sad with you, very possibly, it seems to me. He may not grieve with you like a girlfriend would. But he is not a woman. And he has his own personality and way of dealing with grief. Sometimes it is tempting to think that if our men don’t grieve like we do, they don’t feel sadness or grief. That is not true! They may just deal with it differently. It sounds like you have a pretty supportive guy. Enjoy that! Enjoy him. Savor his love for you and his attention and compassion for you. ๐Ÿ™‚ Receive the way he shows love and support, even if it is without words.

          9. Michelle,

            My husband sounds a lot like yours. He doesn’t always feel confident that he knows what to say when I am really sad. But now, I have learned to receive his embrace and the way he comforts me. I rest in that, knowing he does love me and this is him showing it in a very tangible way. You could say, “I just heard from a friend. The news was hard for me to hear. Thanks for being here for me. I am feeling sad – but it helps so much for you to just be here.”

            About other topics, you may be able to say, “I know I would feel better if I could talk about what I am feeling for a few minutes. That would be such a gift if you had 5-10 minutes to listen. Thank you so much!”

            I hope you can lay down your expectations that he will act and talk just like you do. And that you may be able to discover his world and his perspective. It may be a pretty neat place! ๐Ÿ™‚

          10. Honestly I don’t want to. I have asked God to intervene before the end of the year. I really want it to be a natural process. The problem is I know my husband. He won’t do anything. It would be a miracle if he did. If I approach it I think I need to apologize for hurting him with my demands for sex in the last and for making it all about baby making in the last few years. Then I should say how much I love him and want to connect with him sexually because it’s about sharing my heart not just my body.
            I’m scared of three things: that he will reject me, that he will not own any responsibility for his part and I will continue to shoulder it all alone, and that we will be back in the cycle of me getting upset and him giving me sex once then holding out again until I’m upset.

          11. Michelle,

            There is a lot of hurt here – in all that happened with demands for sex and the baby issue. And if there is also porn going on, that adds a lot more layers to the problem.

            I like how you are talking about possibly approaching things.

            What are you going to do with these fears, my dear sister? Are you able to see what you need to do?

            Much love!

          12. Michelle,

            Two other things to think about:

            Why do you not want to address these issues? Mostly because of fear?

            Why do you want things to be a “natural process”? What does that mean? Does it mean that it won’t involve any risk on your end?

          13. Ouch. Good questions. I guess I thought if I didn’t wait for God to work it out then I was taking over and since I struggle with being controlling I thought I should just keep my mouth shut. So it’s half fear and half wanting to have faith that God will handle it without me having to step in. I was kinda hoping you’d just tell me what to do. ๐Ÿ˜

          14. Michelle,

            Sometimes God wants us to wait and pray quietly. Other times He wants us to act. My sister, your job is to be so close to Jesus that you are clearly hearing His voice and can tell what He is prompting you to do. You will have to act at times. You cannot go completely silent and limp and still have a healthy marriage.

            Do you see anything God may want you to pray about in what you are writing today?

            Much love!

          15. Praise Report! I really thought and prayed about what you said. I decided that fear was not going to have a place in this anymore. I can’t be afraid to talk about the sex and baby issue anymore. I cast it out. I reminded myself that if he wanted to go he could go. I don’t want that but I certainly will be ok if he does.

            Tonight he wanted to talk about applying for a job that would require us to move. I listened and said I was willing to discuss moving if it came down to it. I said I would be happy to share my opinion but ultimately it was his decision and I trusted his choices for us. Then I felt the Holy Spirit saying “here is your chance” I told him if we were discussing moving that I would like to discuss what else is in our future. I said I need to know you aren’t going anywhere. I’ve been feeling like you will leave me if I mess up.

            He grabbed my hand and said “I’m not leaving you. I don’t want you to leave me either. It has just been a rough time.” I said I was sorry that he felt he needed to threaten divorce but I understood why he did, and I never wanted to be that person again. He said he thought I had become a completely different person this year and he was thankful. I told him that I had more work to do but I really feel God is changing my heart. I told him I need to know that we will connect again in every way and that it’s been very hard for me not to be fully connected. He told me he is feeling more connected to me every day. I cried a little and said how sorry I was for before and how much I wanted the chance to make it right and how painful it’s benefiting and desiring him and not being able to connect sexually. I asked if he’d thought about it and he said of course. I asked if there would be an end to the sexual break and he said yes. I told him I understand his need for healing and I want that too I just need to know it’s not a forever thing. He said absolutely not.

            I also told him I still want a baby. I apologized for letting it destroy me before and hurt him but the desire to have kids is still there. He said he still wants to try too. It was so good. It was so healing and he was warm and held my hand and I feel so much relief. I don’t know when these things will change but I know he’s not going to leave and I know he wants us to be whole. That is so big!! Thank you for giving me things to think about. It really helped. God is so faithful. Take that Satan!

          16. Michelle,

            WOOHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
            PRAISING GOD with you, my dear sister! SO thankful you kicked out the fear and south to be vulnerable and found a really good time to talk about that in a respectful way.

            YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          17. Michelle, your testimony brought tears to my eyes. How awesome. Soo important to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and to follow his leading. I pray that your relationship with your husband continues to deepen and become more open and emotionally safe for both of you. God is so good!

  11. Btw I did read the book u recommended. It was hard to read and I felt there wasn’t much hope for me to ever get it right. I am trying to tackle the lies in my head though. It’s just hard to tackle the natural desires God gave us.

    1. Michelle,

      What are some of the lies that you tend to hold onto the most, would you say?

      Yes, it’s very painful to desire to have sexual intimacy with your spouse and for him not to feel ready for that yet. I wish things hadn’t gotten so bad 9 months ago. BUT – it does seem to me that y’all are moving toward healing and that is awesome!

      What is your greatest desire in your relationship with God? What do you pray for?

      Much love to you!

      1. The number one lie I believe is that God is good but not to me. I don’t know why he won’t rescue me from this. He didn’t rescue me from my dad or infertility either. I feel like there’s no point to me being here. I struggle with comparisons and I see other people getting all they want in life and I feel worthless.
        I pray about different things. I worship and then I ask god to speak to me. Sometimes I hear something about a sin and I will read scripture and pray about that specifically. Sometimes I don’t hear anything. Sometimes I cry about all this stuff and sometimes I cry about how good god is. It’s different every day. I haven’t been able to pray for my husband because I can’t seem to do it without selfish motives. The fact is I don’t really care about his happiness. I’m not happy. So I guess I’m naturally very selfish. I’ve prayed about that too. I have good days when my hormones are level and I have days of despair. I can’t seem to stop the cycle. I try to visualize God answering my prayers. I try to see positive things in the future but all I can see is misery. Maybe that’s why god doesn’t help me. Because I don’t really believe he will. Sigh. This is why I get depressed because I don’t think I can ever get it right.

        1. Michelle,

          Are you having medical issues with your hormones? Have you talked with a doctor about that?

          I really appreciate your honesty here. It is super helpful to be able to see what is actually going on in your mind.

          Do you want to change? If you are serious about wanting to change, God absolutely can change you!

          If you are ready to invest a bit more heavily in finding spiritual healing in Christ, I have some assignments that I believe will help – IF you truly want to allow God to change you. ๐Ÿ™‚

          Much love to you!

          1. I do want to change! I just cannot seem to separate myself from my feelings. And medical issues I don’t think so. I just have horrible pms and over crazy around the middle of my cycle too. I could go on bc I guess but I don’t want to.

    2. Michelle,

      I know we do not know one another, but I am so proud of you for tackling your fear of confronting your husband and casting away all the anxiety that went along with it. Your story truly brought tears to my eyes. I have just prayed for you and your husband to connect on all levels and that your hardship only strengthens your marriage and brings you even closer. I know this is such a clichรฉ saying, but everything absolutely 100% happens for a reason. We may never fully know all the reasons, but I always fall back on this (and God) when I am struggling in my life. I pray God wraps you both in his arms and fills you with His love and light and peace.

      Hugs, love and peace,
      Krista

  12. April,
    Did you ever feel like you were getting it all wrong? Or that it’s impossible to get rid of all the bitterness and hurt? I am missing a piece of the puzzle….It’s been such a see-saw. One week I’m at peace and close to Him, the next I feel alone and unwanted. All the hurt just bubble back up, the bitterness takes root again… I start pushing my husband away – almost like I’m punishing myself.
    My husband says that my face, tone and body language tell him when I’m upset. And, I have been getting upset at some ridiculous things – always when I’m hormonal. I have been writing all my feelings/symptoms on the calendar to try to find a way to get a “hint” that what I’m feeling is just hormonal, but I have found no relief….
    A couple years ago, I was living in the ‘I know best, so do what I say’ mode. My husband had enough. He said he was leaving. That was my wake up call – I didn’t want to lose my best friend. I seriously didn’t even know he was unhappy…. I was shell-shocked.
    Looking back, that’s when I started to enmesh myself in him. Everything I did was to please him. I still hang on his every word. I have only been really working at this for a few months – to measure my value and worth by what God sees in my heart and to really work on my relationship with Him by giving my husband (and myself) grace and respect.
    My husband and I talked – he knows what I’m going through and he wants to help me get a handle on things. He says he’s not going anywhere and that I’m the love of his life. But those seeds of doubt spring up – I think things, hurtful things. I dwell on that hurt and nurture it. I’ve had a lifetime to perfect that skill….
    But, I don’t want to be the hurt, bitter, resentful woman anymore. I want to be free and happy. I’ve had a taste of it and I love it. I am terrified that I am going to lose the man that has held my hand through all of my darkest hours. After ten years of marriage, we have damaged each other some. There’s always a trade off between love and pain.

    1. Waiting for the Storm to Pass,

      Oh, goodness! I continued to get TONS of things wrong for over 2.5 years into my journey. In fact, it wasn’t until that point that I BEGAN to have any clue what I was doing. And it was 3.5 years into my journey before I began to feel like, “I think I know pretty much how to respect my husband and honor his leadership and it feels pretty normal now.” But I am still learning! I always will be!

      If there is ANY little tiny shred of bitterness – it will roar back to life. Yep. It all has to be completely torn out the second you see it.

      My precious sister, being enmeshed with him and seeking to please your husband above all else is a really toxic way to live, too. That is not going to work.

      I can’t remember which posts you have read… but I invite you to search my home page for:

      – victory over fear
      – bitterness
      – closeness
      – oneness
      – PMS
      – people pleasing
      – identifying the lies we have embraced
      – unhealthy VS healthy relationships

      Also, please search my Youtube channel, April Cassidy, for “Taking Our Thoughts Captive”

      Let’s hash through these things together, my friend! I’m so glad you reached out. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Sending you a huge hug!

      1. I was so firmly enmeshed in my husband that when he said he was leaving it ripped the ground right out from under me. I pushed away all things that were ‘me’ and tried to be who he wanted me to be. Turns out that didn’t work for very long. I have been working to fully pull my identity out of his and become me again.
        I am working on my relationship with Christ. To become a more godly woman is my #1 priority. Sometimes I feel comfortable, believe things are going well, and start coasting. It never fails that things start going wrong. I know my hormones play a huge role in this. I’m at the doctor now – praying they get my levels regulated soon!
        It just feels like I’m doing so much damage every time I react emotionally, when in reality I have done so much worse in the past. Then it’s even worse because I beat myself up. I feel indebted to my husband and family. I make ridiculous sacrifices to atone for my awful behavio, but bit feels empty.
        This weekend, my husband spent time with a friend of his that has been nasty to me on many occasions. My husband has always stepped in and set this friend straight when he crosses a line. I truly didn’t mind him spending time with him UNTIL I remembered MY friend that he disliked. He asked me not to spend time with her because he felt that she was going to cheat on her husband (which she did). I honored his wishes and stopped socializing with her. So, why is it okay for him to dictate who I should spend time around, BUT my feelings don’t enter his equation when it comes to his personal friendships? None of this is what came out of my mouth though… I made rude comments about his loyalty to me. I told him that he was going to leave me anyways because of my attitude so why stay… I asked him why he could even care for me after all the scars we have.
        I am trying my best to sort through all this garbage I have been carrying around for years. As soon as I believe I laid it to rest, it comes back in a different way….

        1. Waiting for the Storm to Pass,

          Changing to try to be what other people want us to be usually ends up being pretty destructive, as you have obviously found out. ๐Ÿ™
          I’m SUPER thankful you are seeking to put Christ first now. THAT is awesome!

          Glad you are checking on your hormone levels with the doctor. They do make everything MUCH more challenging when they are messed up.

          I can’t remember if I suggested the post, “My Demon,” to you yet?

          1. Yes, after I settled down that was the FIRST post that came to mind. I am realizing that I need to address things that bother me WHEN they happen. Earlier in the week, he was being especially negative and hurtful. He was tired and grumpy. But, he said the one thing that he KNOWS gets under my skin. I didn’t let go of it. I carried it around with me all week – just under the surface. Then, when he went fishing with he friend that is rude, I felt slighted or maybe just hurt. I let the echos from Tuesday join with my aggravation on Saturday and they spun me out of control. Maybe it’s less hormonal than I thought. Maybe it’s just me acting like a spoiled brat. Please pray for my husband and I as I sort through these things.

          2. Waiting for the Storm to Pass,

            Praying for God’s wisdom for you, my sister! For you to do what is right in God’s eyes, for you to think rightly in your heart and to know when to speak up and when to be silent and pray.

            Do you feel that you know now how to speak up when things first happened so that you are more prepared for next time?

          3. I’ve never been good with emotions. Typically, I am pretty stoic and controlled. So, when something gets my emotions going, I either let them all out or hold them all in. When I hold them in, I have an incident like I did this weekend.

          4. It’s better than it’s ever been in the past, but I have a lot of sorting through old emotions and letting go to do yet… I have to learn how to love myself and others in the right way. It’s so easy to slip back into the “old” habits – hopefully, because I have only been making changes for such a short time. I am begging God to fix my mind and heart.

          5. Waiting for the Storm to Pass,

            Do you feel like you need more resources, you still may be working through the other lists I had shared before. ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t want to over swamp you.

            Do you need any help with figuring out how to hash through these things?

            Praying for God to continue His good work in you and for you to seek Him wholeheartedly! I know as you completely surrender to Him, He will empower you more and more and He will give you the clarity and wisdom you need.

            Much love to you!

          6. I am re-reading through the lists you’ve sent me previously. Sometimes I just need a reminder! ๐Ÿ™‚ I have really been having an issue with coveting my husband’s time and remembering that everything doesn’t have to work out the way I expected it to…I have control relapses. Thankfully, the struggle has ONLY been internal. My husband really feels badly when I give him a guilt trip for going somewhere without me. I look forward to Saturday and Sunday to have those days to spend time with my family that I feel cheated or forgotten if he takes off to do something without us (the kids and I). This is the time of year where he is gone a lot on weekends, so I really need to find the right way to lay this to rest.

          7. And I just read you latest post about being the “football widow” – I love the new ways to look at his hobbies. I really love the examples – especially taking the time apart to really let my relationship with Christ grow. THAT I can do. Thank you!

          8. Waiting for the Storm: I used to resent my husband leaving too. He is a big fisherman/hunter and September is hunting season. Now, I’m grateful for that time alone. It gives me time to reflect, focus on myself and God, and relax. Plus, it gives us time to miss each other. I also would ask myself, “Would it really be a good time if he felt forced to stay?” Of course not. I don’t take it personally anymore. My husband wants to provide meat/fish for his family. Plus, he needs his relaxation time too away from work.

    2. I feel like you’re walking around in my skin girl. I just wanted to say you’re not alone and I do believe there is hope for both of us. xoxo

  13. April,

    I just read your amazing book this weekend. I appreciate Chapter 11 about expressing your desires. My husband and I have been off lately. We are both a little overwhelmed and stressed from work. I’ve resorted to some disrespectful ways, including nagging. I hate to nag, but I’m stuck. I’ve tried to follow your advice and others about stating your feelings and asking nicely, but my husband always thinks me asking is a demand no matter how nicely I ask him. But if I don’t ask, he doesn’t help on his own. He’s been shutting himself off too, watching TV downstairs and he started using tobacco again which makes him grumpy. In your experience with other wives, do husbands tend to help out more when respect is restored? Should a wife wait awhile before asking for help or stating her feelings until things get better? At this point my husband is annoyed when I state my feelings or what I want and he gets so defensive when I ask for help. Thanks!

  14. Hello April,

    1. I thank you so much for sharing all of this valuable information with me. I am very nervous/excited to get started and am doing so today.

    2. I am definitely starting my journey from the beginning and am so grateful that you are helping me on my way. I am a little confused by the red flags you are seeing and what you mean by asking that I examine my fixed beliefs. Can you go over this a little more with me?

    4. It is so hard to imagine myself without this crippling fear of death. I always feel very alone in this phobia. People close to me think I’m silly or weird etc. I sincerely do tell myself that God loves me and I have nothing to worry about, but that thought leaves my mind as quickly as it entered and is replaced with all the usual neurotic thinking.

    6. I have done some online searching for support groups and I really cannot seem to find any, Christian included. I will say that I have not devoted a lot of time looking, so I am going to add that to my things-to-do-today list. If I come across anything legitimate and helpful I will forward the info along.

    7. I have not heard of Christian Recovery, but our church does host a weekly drug/alcohol recovery group. The problem within the problem is that these are medicines that we have to take at least for now. I have been in treatment for major back problems-bulging discs, narrowing of the spine… My husband suffers similar problems. We have tried alternate forms of therapy-acupuncture, massage, chiropractic and I went so far as to try Reiki with no success. It’s hard when the prescribed doses of medication barely touch the pain along with the number of years we have been on a pain management program. This situation simply makes me sick and I hate it.

    8. I have not yet met with his therapist as he has only had two sessions so far. I live in Pittsburgh and it’s hard to believe when I say this but there is a shortage of mental health providers in my area. That being said we have to wait a long time for appointments. I tried to explain to the dr. offices that he is in a very real crisis situation and to be honest my plea for any emergency appointments fall on deaf ears. At any rate, Bobby and I do talk when he is clear headed and the only thing that he and I can do when an episode is approaching (thankfully there are very clear signs of this) is for either one of us have to completely remove ourselves from whatever room we are in together. I absolutely have to not argue with him and this is so hard when the the words coming out of his mouth are vile at best. I have to appease him in any way by just agreeing with him or telling him I won’t do this or that etc. This is NOT easy to say the least. The only thing that gets me through is that I KNOW this is not him and that I cannot reason with this disease. We are seriously counting the days until his appointment for medication and are doing everything we can to avoid the things we know are triggers.

    I know I have a log road ahead of me in all the things we have been writing about. I will say that connecting with God and getting grounded with Him is what I need first, foremost and desperately. I am so blessed to have you and all the sisters who visit your blog to help guide me. Without this I would truly be in the dark. Please feel free to suggest other sites or books you may know of. I do not feel overwhelmed with the resources you have been providing me with. I pray that God blesses you over and over. Have a happy day and thank you.

    Hugs, peace and love,
    Krista

    1. Krista,

      WOOHOO! I am so excited you are getting started today! ๐Ÿ™‚ That is AWESOME! This journey is kind of like a 3000 mile hike across the country. Or like “eating an elephant.” You won’t be able to do it all in a day, a week, or a month. This is a lifelong journey to know and love Jesus and to follow Him and allow Him to transform you as you yield to Him as LORD of ALL in your life. So be patient with yourself as you take a few bites. Give yourself time to digest things. Go deeply and slowly and take the time you need to really dig. ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. I see that your thinking about God and His character may be out of alignment with God’s Word in some areas. As you read the post about Identifying Lies We Have Embraced and you study the character of God in Scripture or in David Platt’s sermons or as you read Lies Women Believe and the Truth That Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss – I believe God will reveal the lies to you so that you can tear them out and choose to rebuild on His truth. ๐Ÿ™‚ After you read my post about lies, perhaps it will be more clear. Let me know!

      4. Lots of people fear death – it is natural to be afraid, and if we don’t have God, we SHOULD be very afraid of death because we will face judgement and condemnation after this life unless we have received Jesus’ gift for our sins. The awesome thing is, as we are filled up with God, we don’t have to fear death in a phobic way anymore. God CAN heal you of this! Eventually, you will learn to write down all of your individual thoughts and fears and then write down the truth of the Bible. Then you can purposely throw away your old thinking that was wrong and destructive (lies from the enemy) and replace them with God’s healing truth. Truth sets us free! God’s Word is truth!

      6. Sounds very good. ๐Ÿ™‚

      7. I pray God will give you wisdom about ways to handle the pain, or healing for your pain, so that you can come off of these medications, my sister!

      8. I am really glad you have a warning when an episode is coming and that you have a plan. No, when he is in an episode like this, that is NOT the real him. So I am glad you are able to understand that you can’t reason with him at that point or have any kind of real discussion.

      Praying for God’s wisdom for you and His spiritual and physical healing for you both, my precious sister!

      Much love!
      April

      1. April,

        I am having a hard time understanding something I read here and it is really affecting me in my journey. I apologise I cannot remember what post I read this in, but you had said something to the effect that you cannot begin to pray to God for help or concerns etc. in your life until you give up any idols that you might have? I remember feeling very confused that God has not heard one thing that I ever spoke to him about because I have not done, accepted or purged these certain things in my life. It seems like doing all the things that were listed can take more than a lifetime to accomplish and left me wondering how I could ever move forward. Can you recall where I may have read this and does this sound at all familiar to you? If so can you please elaborate on what this means? I was literally stopped in my tracks and now I don’t know how to proceed in my relationship with God.

        Peace and love,
        Krista

        1. Krista,

          Yes! Let’s talk about this!

          If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened. Psalm 66:18

          The idea is – “the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” (James 5:16)

          Part of being a follower of Christ is that we confess any known sin to God and we turn totally away from it in disgust and repulsion – turning to Christ as LORD of our lives. He is the Master. His will is the most important thing. I can’t cling to bitterness, idolatry, resentment, pride, self-righteousness, or any sin and have close fellowship with God.

          Jesus replied, โ€œAnyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching…” John 14:23-24

          Repentance and obedience are necessary components to living a righteous life and to having God hear and answer our prayers. Also, there are many conditional promises in Scripture that are only available to us when we are walking in obedience by the power of God’s Spirit.

          Of course, we have no power to obey God in our own strength. We can’t even see all of our sins on our own. But we can invite God to reveal our sins to us, to show us our hidden motives, and to help us see and tear out any idols or sin by the power of His Spirit working in us. And we can yield ourselves to His Spirit’s control in our lives so that He is in charge, not ourselves. When we are filled with His Spirit like this, then we can pray effectively.

          If I am praying with a mind that is controlled by the flesh and by my sinful nature, no, God will not hear my prayers – except for my prayers of repentance. When we grieve God’s Spirit, we break fellowship with Him:

          And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 5:30-32

          Do you believe that you have idols in your heart? Would you like to talk about how to lay down all of your dreams and desires on the altar before God and be willing to be content with Him alone and how to submit to Him as Lord of every area of your life?

          There may be hidden sins that we are not aware of, at times. But the goal is, for believers, for us to hate every sin just like God does and for us to be willing to trash anything that offends Him, and to allow Him to take inventory of our souls, hearts, and minds, daily – so that we can immediately repent if there is any sin He brings to mind. As we continue to do this and we learn to take our thoughts captive for Christ, and to resist Satan and yield to the Lordship of Christ, we learn to hear His voice more and more clearly and we learn to discern the voice of the enemy and reject his messages.

          We cannot rebel against God and pray effectively at the same time. Does that make sense?

          Would you be interested in doing a spiritual check up with me?

          Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. 7Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devilโ€™s work. 9No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because Godโ€™s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not Godโ€™s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister. 1 John 3:4-10

          The passage above is speaking about that one who is born of God, who is a disciple of Christ, who knows and loves Christ and lives for Him as Lord – cannot continue on and on living in habitual sin. The Holy Spirit pricks our conscience when we are sinning to nudge us toward repentance. If I can live comfortably in habitual sin, either I am very sick spiritually and need to repent right away to return to my Lord for healing or I am spiritually dead.

          E. M. Bounds has an amazing book about prayer. There is a whole chapter in The Necessity of Prayer devoted to the importance of praying from a life of obedience that may be helpful. It is not that we obey God first and then He saves us. It is that He saves us and then empowers us by His Spirit to walk in obedience and victory over sin. It is ALL His work that makes us right with Him, not our own fleshly effort. But if I am cherishing sin in my heart and not grieved by sin or I am comfortable in sin, there is something seriously wrong with my spiritual health that needs to be addressed right away.

          “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Matthew 7:21

          Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. James 1:22

          From E.M. Bounds:

          “In its highest form, faith is the attitude and the act of a person surrendered to God – one in whole His Word and His Spirit dwells…. Prayer and faith work, act, and react one upon the other. Obedience to God helps faith as no other attribute possibly can. When obedience is based upon unquestioning recognition of the validity and supremacy of God’s commands, faith ceases to be an almost superhuman task. It requires no straining to exercise it. Obedience to God makes it easy to believe and trust God. When the spirit of obedience fully saturates the soul, the will is perfectly surrendered to God, and there is a fixed, unalterable, purpose to obey God, faith almost believes itself. Faith then becomes almost automatic. After obedience it is the next natural step, and it is easily and willingly taken. The difficulty in prayer is not with faith but with obedience, which is faith’s foundation.”

          “If we want to pray well and get the most out of our praying, we must look carefully at our obedience, at the secret sources of our actions, and at the loyalty of our heart to God. Obedience is the groundwork of effective praying. It is that which brings us near to God. The lack of obedience in our lives breaks down our praying… Disobedient living produces mighty poor praying. Disobedience shuts the door of the inner closet and bars the way to the Holy of Holies. No Christian can pray – really pray – who does not obey.”

          Let me know what God is speaking to you or if you are feeling confused. This is so important! We’ll hash through it together.

          Much love!

          1. Krista,

            We will not be completely sinless and perfect until we reach heaven. We are in the process of sanctification on earth – where we are growing in spiritual maturity, Christlikeness, and understanding. We start as spiritual babies and develop into stronger believers.

            But we can certainly be willing to get rid of any sin and open to God’s correction and rebuke every moment. That is the goal – to be receptive to His Spirit and His Word, and ready and willing to obey Him no matter what the cost. When we live like this and we receive His Spirit’s power, then we can begin to pray more effectively. Of course, as our faith grows and our understanding grows, we will pray more and more effectively. I think I am still a toddler in my faith – there is so much more I want to learn!

          2. April,

            You are such a blessing in my life. I truly cannot thank you enough for you help and guidance. Your response does clear a lot, but I do have a few more questions. Some of what you said I already do on a very, very infantile almost womb-like way, but I want to read though your answer a few more times and gather my thoughts before I respond wholly.

            Gratefully,
            Krista

  15. Hi April,

    He said that he is extremely depressed right now and finds when he is this way he is less likely to reach out to Christ although he does not blame Him for his condition or any other problems he is facing. He also said that he does have a relationship with Christ but it could be a lot better.

    ๐Ÿ™‚๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Hi April,

    Currently the only type of prayer we do together is me saying grace when we eat. It is a lot more than, “Bless us oh Lord for these thy gifts…” I do say that but then I continue to thank God for Bobby and all the hard work he does for me and my family. I say a few more things and then close. I am sure that he would have no problem praying together, however, I don’t think I would know how to do something out loud other than grace. Also, this may sound awful and I sincerely do not wish it to, but I get really embarrassed saying anything religious out loud. I have no idea why this is. Additionally, and this is where it gets a bit crazy, I cry pretty badly when I do speak out loud to God whether alone or in front of others. We have tremendously scaled back going to church because as soon as my foot is in the door the crying starts and doesn’t end until the moment we walk outside. It would make complete sense to see this as feeling guilty of sins etc. and being in front of Christ. I have been doing this since I was a very little girl and it has never stopped. Any insight on that would be awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ Sorry, I got off topic. Can you give me any suggestions of the kinds of things I should be saying to or asking from God when we do pray together?

    I wanted to briefly let you know that Nancy Leigh DeMoss has a YouTube video titled Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free. I watched it this evening and just literally shook my head. I have no idea how I will ever get close to the point where I would like to be with God. I guess I just did not realize how very lost I am. Soooo much work to do. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Krista,

      I cry if I pray out loud, too, a lot of times. And I cry over lots of songs at church. My children hand me tissues before certain songs even start, or they read the bulletin and suggest I shouldn’t be there that day! Ha!

      You can write out prayer if you want to, I do better with that!

      I will try to share some examples later. ๐Ÿ™‚ Or, you can search my home page for “prayer day,” “pray for husband,” and for “how to pray for your husband so that God will hear.”

      This will be a long, slow process, like it is with all of us. ๐Ÿ™‚ Start with a few lies and work on them first. Which ones were the biggest ones that jumped out at you?

      Much love!
      April

  17. April,

    I am still working through which lies I have been coveting and composing a prayer for Bobby and I. Both are proving to be a bit difficult.
    I would like to ask you what version of the bible do you use/recommend? I have always been taught from the KJV but wonder if there may be a better translation.

    Many thanks and prayers,
    Krista

My grandmother is on hospice and won't be with us much longer (11-30-16). I will get to comments when I am able to but I need to be with family right now. Thanks for understanding.

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