I promised I would be raw and honest on this blog so here it goes. Engagement and married life has been hard for me. I have realized how independent I am, how particular I am and controlling with certain things I can be. Not controlling like I want to control anyone's life, but controlling in the way that if something doesn't go the way I imagined, I get frustrated.
The other biggest hill we are trying to climb? Understanding our roles of husband and wife from a Godly perspective. I'll just say it- we got into this fight that started from a lack of communication and spiraled into us putting each other down about "what we don't do" and "how we are supposed to be". He would tell me I am not a Godly wife and I would tell him he is not being a Godly husband. He told me I need to learn how to submit and I told him he needs to learn to love me like Christ loves his church!
Now, I know many of your reading this have experienced one, if not two things: 1. You have experienced this yourself and/or 2. You are shaking your head at me because we all know that is not okay to do to your spouse.
We literally were pointing fingers at each other, using Ephesians 5 to justify what we are saying. If you don't know what Ephesians 5 reads, it says:
"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church."
All that did was get us defensive and despise those verses. Why would ANYONE want the amazing Word of God to be used against them??
It made us take a step back and say "Ok, clearly we are upset, but we are speaking out of emotion. Let's get the facts on what our roles are". So we took time and studied the Word together- specifically Ephesians 5:22-32. And then we studied and dissected what the verses meant. What we found is that each role has a great responsibility. Both hold a responsibility to love and to give to the other person. We learned that we have a greater responsibility than just ourselves... we must steward our marriage so it is a reflection of God's relationship with us/his church. Humbling, right?
Furthermore, we read an article that said something I will never forget, and I know it will help you today. It said, and I am paraphrasing, that if we are focused on the verses about what our spouse should be doing, we are doing it completely wrong. We should be reading the verses that are for us, and let our spouse focus on the parts that are for them. So basically, I should only focus on the parts about the role as a wife and I should let W focus on the parts that are for the husband. That way, we are in a self-reflecting state of mind. We work with God to refine our spouse the way the Word wills by praying for them and letting God's glory be seen. Because God can do way more in one day that we can do in a lifetime, amen? I loved that perspective. Of course, that ended the argument in tears and apologies... the conversation became loving-- seeking understanding of what we need. Then we ended it all with prayer. I loved it. God in the center= Love all around.
Ever since, we both chose to take that to heart and so far, so good. I am sure we will have slip ups again... because God knows we are not perfect... but we know with God, our relationship will continue to be refined and become a reflection of His goodness.
My advice? Do the same. If your spouse isn't a believer... do it for yourself. It allows God to work His will without our interference. Again, God can do more than we ever could. So it may start with YOU being a reflection of what God wills, but He knows the desires of your heart... He is a God of infinite blessings... so let's let our Daddy work! :)
I am going to be talking about how we are working through our personality differences in my next blog post... it's pretty funny. So stay tuned for that!