Hello my friends! Amanda here! I have a special post to share with you this week. You see, today (August 13th) is my 13th wedding anniversary! There was a time when I thought we would never make it to this point. After all, we all know being in a marriage, any marriage, is challenging. When you throw in a spiritual mismatch it certainly adds an extra layer of complex difficulties. We have faced so many storms I was sure would sink our ship, yet here we stand! On solid ground and more united than ever! Is our marriage perfect? Nope! Is he saved? Not yet :). But Daniel and I are in a place now I once thought was impossible. A place of mutual respect, strong communication, and beautiful peace. I want my message today to bring hope. Hope to anyone out there struggling in their mismatched marriage.
While I was contemplating the last few years of our marriage, I thought of a few tips I would like to share with you all. Tips that I have found to be incredibly helpful in my marriage, and I am sure they can help someone else out there as well!
**Quick side note: I know Lynn covers a few of these topics in her book "Winning Him Without Words". If you do not have it GET IT! She goes into much more detail and her God-given wisdom is vital to this journey we are on! This post is just my personal take on my experiences with my hubby :).**
First, do not allow the enemy to make you think your marriage is doomed. That is was all a huge mistake and will inevitably end in disaster. That kind of thinking is partnering with death and has no place in any marriage! You can still have a beautiful, loving marriage even as a SUMite. I have come to believe that my marriage to Daniel IS part of God's plan for my life. Being with an unbeliever has pushed me into a deeper and more intimate relationship with God that I truly do not think I would have had otherwise. This journey makes us need God in a very unique way. And I am thankful for that!
Second, be the peace in your home! My friends, it is so very important that we do not give in to the fears and anxieties of this world! As the representation of Christ in our homes part of our duty is to bring the peace. We must remember where our hope comes from. We lean on the rock that never falters and will not be shaken! But our spouses are not looking up to the father for their guidance. They are looking at the chaos all around them every day trying to find a quiet place to land and feel steady. We can help there. Give your spouse a long hug at the end of the day, ask them what you can do for them when you see their stress or anxiety rising. The change won't be immediate, but watch how the atmosphere shifts!
Third, silence! Sometimes we need to speak up, speak out, and say no. Other times we need to be still and wait on the Lord! Not every disagreement should turn into a battle. Not every thought needs to be shared. And we are NOT always right (that one I struggle with haha). Pray for wisdom in this, ask God to shut your mouth you shouldn't speak, and give you the grace to speak in love when you do. Sometimes our silence speaks the loudest. Not when we are using it as a manipulation, but when we use it in wisdom.
My last tip is to focus on the good! It is far too easy to complain. We compile a mental list of our spouses faults and drown ourselves in self pity or self righteousness. This is a snare that catches all of us at some point. It is in those times we must take our thoughts captive and replace each complaint with a praise! Even if you can only think of two good things to say about your spouse. Repeat them over and over! After a while you start to notice more and more things worthy of praise.
In closing, here is a bonus tip, the most important tip, NEVER stop praying for them! Bring them to the Father as often as possible, they need it!
I would love to read your tips in the comments!
Lynn, I couldn't stop reading this book! It is the best you have written! It's a "self-help-bible-based-do-it-yourself-demon-slaying-victory-winning book" like no other I've ever read. I learned some new prayer points as well as clarification on what exactly does my situation mean. Everyone who reads this will want their bible, notebook and the Holy Spirit sitting next to them as they strategize with the tools you've given! -Barb