I have just completed a wonderful Bible Study (“Calm My Anxious Heart” by Linda Dillow) with some amazing women from my church. I went into the study with the plan of meeting some different ladies and making new friends, but God apparently had a much different plan for me. In the beginning, I read each chapter, answered all the questions and came to meetings completely prepared. But, after a couple of chapters, it seemed to me that I had quite a bit to learn, and by the end, I had stopped devoting time to this study.
I have a wonderful life…a beautiful 4 year old daughter, a happily dysfunctional family, loyal friends, and a great job. But my marriage leaves much to be desired. The first night I met John, I knew that we were going to be married. We had fun and truly loved each other. When we became engaged, my ex-step mom, Pam, told me not to marry John because he was not a Christian. I remember being hurt that she couldn’t share in my happiness, but now, after almost 10 years of marriage, I understand why she was against the marriage.
John is a non-practicing Jehovah’s Witness and I am a devoted Christian. When we met, I was not involved in the Church and it wasn’t even important. Over the years, I came to realize that a belief in Christ was not enough. I had to deepen my faith and stretch it over those around me. The only way to accomplish that is through participation in God’s plans. That means that I had to get off the bleachers and get into the game. (Thank you, Keith, for the analogy!) So that is what I did.
As I grew as a Christian, my husband and I grew farther apart. At first, it was just me that changed (into a better person, I believed). But after John lost his dream job, he began to change as well. It became harder and harder to be the good wife. I tried, but eventually just pulled away. Now we are fighting to sustain the marriage. Originally, I blamed John for everything. If only he were different…If only he would change. I kept going back to what Pam said, “You shouldn’t marry him.” I started to think that she was right and that I had made a terrible mistake.
Then, this Ladies Bible Study completely changed my mind. I realized that John and I were unequally yoked. Keith, my pastor, has talked about this several times, but it didn’t hit home until recently. I changed the rules in the middle of my marriage and it’s unfair to me, John and Miranda.
At this point, it doesn’t matter who did what to whom. The only thing that matters is that I am God’s representative to everyone that I come in contact with…including my husband. I have learned that I need to change. I need to be the wife that God called me to be. I must devote myself to my husband and fall back in love with him. If I make the first positive move, then John will change accordingly. He has to; the alternative is devastating.
So, what now? Now, I do the right things, even if John doesn’t recognize it or appreciate it. I need to be loving, trusting, caring, praying, and unselfish. I need to show John the love of Christ and make him want it too. This is the path God has me on, right now. I realize that it could change at any moment. But for right now…I must honor my marriage.