It was last September when I honestly felt I was losing my mind.
Multiple issues had compounded between my husband and I, and one day I just couldn’t take it any more. I couldn’t figure out where to go next. Concentrating on anything was a struggle because I couldn’t think straight. I cried constantly for several days, in the car, in the kitchen washing dishes, under my desk at work.
It scared me that I couldn’t seem to get back to the normal me. It was then I knew I had to talk to someone who could help me get control of my brain and guide me in making right decisions.
So I called my pastor.
We hadn’t spoken about my marriage before, so I was a little nervous. I didn’t want to paint my husband out as a bad guy, and I didn’t want to blubber in front of my pastor.
He was very understanding, and reminded me that many men are hard-headed, yet there is always hope. He listened to my concerns with no judgement, then gave some advice I have held onto for the past 9 months.
My pastor told me:
1) Wives are to be submissive without becoming a doormat. Respect goes both ways, but it cannot be demanded. There will be times when I need to support my husband without question, and times when I must stand up for myself without shaming him. With God’s help, I can understand when each response is appropriate, and find the courage and strength I need in each situation.
2) The best prayer is that God would make my husband into the man He designed him to be. There are so many prayers a wive can speak, yet ultimately it isn’t about what I want. Honestly, many of my prayers were selfish. Yet God created my husband; He knows what is best and He gets the final say. I can ask God for whatever I want, but it’s best if I pray as I am led by the Spirit so I can focus on what God wants for my husband.
3) I must lay all my troubles at God’s throne every morning, then walk away and leave it there. We can get so consumed with our problems that we can’t be our best out in the world. I literally could not stop thinking about my troubles, yet with practice, I began to get better at leaving them in God’s hands every day. Sometimes I snatched them back – often – but God never scolds us when we struggle. He’s patient and loving.
There is so much advice available about marriage, but I believe the best advice is when it’s personal, coming from someone who genuinly cares about You, someone who clearly hears the voice of God.
We need a few people like that to guide us through the stormy seasons of life.