Who have I become? For hurting wives & husbands

woman by mirror

My friend, Mindy, is a woman of God, gifted with wisdom, love, and compassion. She and her husband have a great calling on their lives from God.  Mindy and her husband of 14 years are seperated from each right now. They have four beautiful children. 

Mindy says about their troubled marriage , “Basically, we’ve spent most of our married life putting everyone and everything before each other. Not purposely necessarily, just unintentional neglect. I want to break the cycle and move forward with the love of my life on earth. I pray that we will have that opportunity. I know God promises to bless us if we will put Him first. I will not waste any more time being a “double-minded Christian”. I pray my husband will desire that too and will be willing to give our marriage another chance. I pray he will see our future as an adventure in Christ rather than tolerable in ourselves.” 

Below is Mindy’s guest post on marriage, Who have I become?  Please keep her, her husband, and their children in your continual prayers.

“If someone asked you on your wedding day why you loved your husband, how would you have responded?

If someone asked you that question today, would your response be the same? Would you even be able to respond?

What if over the years, your husband stopped being all those things. What if he no longer was so loving, humorous, generous, helpful, supportive, good-looking, affectionate…

Would you still love him?

Logically, the answer would be “no”. If the above qualities you saw in your husband gradually disappeared you’d probably find yourself feeling like your love for him was gone. You’d probably feel like there was nothing else to look forward to so why try. Why stay. Why continue in a marriage where you feel unimportant, unloved, uninvolved, unattractive…? I’m not going to tell you tonight that this is any way to live. I fully understand the gamut of emotions that accompany this life. What I am here to tell you tonight is you don’t have to live this way. And you don’t need a new man to make the difference.

Did you really mean it when you said “I do” to the good times and the bad times? Of course you did at the time because you probably hadn’t really had any bad times yet. You know, we are supposed to love our husbands unconditionally. Unconditionall means NO DEMANDS OR LIMITS. Isn’t this how God loves us? Does he decide at some point were not worth the effort? Absolutely not. He said, “Never will I leave you; Never will I forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). Have you or your husband said, “I have fallen out of love with you” or “I don’t love you like I’m supposed to”? If you have, what you are actually saying is, “I never really loved you unconditionally to begin with”. Our love is generally based on feelings and circumstances. When we marry, the man we say, “I do” to is someone who makes us feel loved and accepted. Obviously he was a good man or you wouldn’t have agreed to spend a lifetime with him.

Here lies the problem. We expect them to spend a lifetime being that man. If you plan to wait around for the husband you married to magically resurface, you’re gonna be waiting a long time. Like forever. When you got married, did you expect for life as you knew it at that moment to never change? Of course not. Maybe you traveled, maybe you started your family right away, maybe you finished school. Anyway, up until the time when you got married, wasn’t everything you were doing in your life making you in to the person you were? Shaping you? Molding you? Changing you? Of course it was. And everything you encountered after marriage has continued to build on that, right?

Now this is where things might get ugly. How many of you have pointed fingers at your husbands today? How many of you have nagged him…accused him…whined about him…disrespected him…ignored him…pushed him away…screamed at him…belittled him….

I want you to ask yourself tonight…

What have I become?
Do I like who I am?
Do I even know what I like?

If your answers to these questions are all positive, praise God. I pray you will never lose sight of who you are. If you answered these questions and you’re not impressed with the image you see, then it’s time to do something about it. It’s time to admit there are three fingers pointing back at you every time you point at him. Does it matter if he deserves what you dish out? NO. Does it matter if you can list a thousand reasons why you do the things you do? NO. Does it matter that you’ve been nagged at, accused, yelled at, disrespected, ignored, pushed away, screamed at, belittled? NO!!

Not fair huh? Was it fair that Jesus was beaten and nailed to the cross…FOR US? Who are you again? Do you need to go back a paragraph and be reminded? I believe the sacrifice He made for you deserves a “thank you”. What better way is there to show your gratitude today than to choose to be crucified too. Mark 8:3437 says, “…If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross (there’s only one reason to take up your cross…to be crucified), and follow me. 35 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. 36 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? 37 Is anything worth more than your soul?”

Have you lost sight of who you are? Who you always wanted to be? Well, today is the day to be found. Remember the hymn Amazing Grace…”I once was lost but now I’m found”? Well, the next line is “I was blind but now I see”. If your blinders have been removed and you don’t like what you see, there’s no more time to waste. Don’t live even one more day in bondage to that woman. Romans 12:2 says, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a NEW person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is GOOD AND PLEASING AND PERFECT.” It’s guaranteed if you begin to work on you, allowing God to mold you into His likeness, it will only be a matter of time before you will see a difference in your marriage.

I want to remind you that God must be the foundation of your transformation. Only God holds the love that “bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things” (1 Cor 13:7).

Lord, I pray that each woman reading this message will be submissive to your desire to transform them into godly, virtuous women. I pray they’ll all be willing to make the first sacrifice in order to enter a lifetime of blessings and promise in their marriages. I thank you that you will protect them from the enemy waiting to strike them down and discourage them. They will be victorious in you Lord! Help us to all fight this battle. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

WOW! This couldn’t be more fitting considering this message.Today’s “Love Dare” challenge is to make a list of areas in your life that you may need to be more flexible. Choose to react to tough circumstances with love rather than irritation.

Thank you all so much! Please continue to pray for my protection. I’m a little under the weather and you all know how emotions can run rampant when you don’t feel well. So far so good but please continue to pray.”

Article Copyright 2009 by Mindy Sweat

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