Dear friends, I shared last week about the small group I've been attending. Well, today I want to share a very encouraging story from that group.
There's a man in that group who's a great sharer. He's jolly, enthusiastic, and loves God. He brings plenty of ideas about faith to our group chats. He's in his sixties, and he and his wife have adult children.
One night the group was mingling as the evening was wrapping up. Some were in the kitchen, others were in the living room, and I was sat on a couch beside this particular man and his wife. She was next to me, he was on the other side of her talking to someone else, and so she and I got quietly talking.
She began to tell me her story. It went like this:
"I actually went to church on my own for years. He wasn't interested, he never came with me. I was on my own in my faith for a long time."
She smiled at me.
I peeked around her to take another look at her hubby, a bemused look on my face. Are we talking about the same man? Then I focused on her again.
"Was that hard for you?" I asked.
"Was it ever!" she rolled her eyes.
We shared a cheeky smile.
"So what happened next?"
"Oh, he just gradually got there. Bit by bit, slowly things changed. He's only just started coming to this group. He would never have gone to something like this before."
I peered around her discreetly at him again.
"Amazing." I said with a big smile.
"Yes, amazing." She grinned back.
Looking at that man today, all I can see is one who loves being with God first thing in the morning, attends church, reads Christian books, plays worship music in the home for his own enjoyment, and gets his wife to do devotionals with him in the morning.
Well there we go. The joy of this story is that I will get to see this visible example weekly from now on at my small group, and they are a living breathing example of a spiritually mismatched couple who had one season then another season.
In this ministry we need these examples, as hope is an important element of our spiritually mismatched walk. God wants us to hope because he doesn't want us to label our spouse as an impossible case (he wants us to bless our spouse not curse them, James 3:10) and he wants us to believe in His magnitude.
It's summed up well here:
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things (1 Corinthians 13:7, NKJV)
So, while we must learn to be content in our circumstance (very important) and love our spouse exactly where they are (also very important), hey let's seize stories like this so that we can hope and believe that there is a bigger possibility beyond what our circumstance looks like today.
Hope you liked that story. Love you all,