WAIT-Who is in Charge?

Why do we bombard our spouses with conversations, texts, and sending someone else to go and talk sense into them instead of just trusting God to do it?

I have to go back in time and share why I did it. And boy, did I do it a LOT. In fact, when he was home I was obsessed with getting that conversation going. When he was not home, I was obsessed with the conversations in my head that I was going to have with him when he finally did come home. I was always looking, always thinking, always searching for ways to get through to him. I think he could feel it. When I sat there in silence, he could feel my wheels turning in my brain and he knew any moment I was going to pounce.

At that time, I was thoroughly convinced God ‘worked for me.’ That I was the one in charge of repairing my spouse’s broken mind and our broken marriage. I was totally convinced that God was sitting there, waiting for me to take authority, take charge, dish out the orders, find the magic combination of prayers, and scriptures, mixed with the exact amount of time, and faith to get things changed. I had a promise from Him, I just had to figure out how to get that promise to come to pass and activate it.

My life was literally like a video game playing out where I was pursuing victory, and from time to time, I would enter into a counseling session to ‘get help’ from the Lord. But pretty much the whole time I felt like it was about me discovering my weapons and how to use them. Discovering the secrets that would bring me closer to changing my spouse’s heart and mind. I stayed away from any scripture that talked about learning to rest in Him, or how the battle belonged to the Lord because at that time, I was very full of energy and didn’t want this battle to belong to anyone but me, who still had a lot of confidence that I knew what I was doing, and I had full trust in myself that everything I had ever done that pertained to my husband had worked in the past……….and I was going to get it to work again! It was just a bit more tricky now, but I was sure of myself that I would get it figured out.

Thank God He was patient with me, understood all this about me, just like He understands it about you too. He knows we have to come to the end of ourselves. We have to exhaust every avenue and for some like me, go back and drive that road and test out that path again to see if we missed something.

For many, that is where the journey stops.
And this is really heartbreaking. They THINK they are Standing, but in reality, they are STRIVING! They are working that game to bring victory all the while consulting God and seeing if they can convince Him to do their will. They are working this plan to death, and they have in the back of their minds……”Just one more attempt. One more plan up my sleeve, before I call it done.” They may have predetermined this was going to end if the divorce went through, or if their spouse marries the other person, or has a child with them. This shows right here, who they truly are submitted to…..themselves. IF you are submitted to God, then there are no terms where you get to determine when you quit, move on.

Of course, you can and should have those discussions with the Lord. It’s always best to be as honest and raw with Him as you can. Confess to Him that you only want to go as far as what you understand and what feels possible, but you have a breaking point and you are unwilling to go past it. BUT, this is where you have to hand the baton. Where you ran the first half of the race and now it’s time to hand it off to God, are you willing? This is where the REAL Stand begins. The real growth and maturity. I know you are thinking? What the heck have I been doing all this time?

Well, you have been the teacher in the classroom and from time to time, you took a break and sat and learned. But now it is the time where you hang up that teaching position and take a seat and let the Lord take over.

THIS IS WHERE THE REAL LESSONS BEGIN

 This is where you discover that God has been watching you the whole time. Waiting on you. Waiting for you to come to a place where you chose to continue on with your ways, your control, your independence of Him because you know it’s best if you run your own life. OR you say……….I want to submit to you, Lord.

When I came to this place in my ‘stand’ it was a big shift. I had tried EVERYTHING to get my spouse to change. I had said everything, done everything, sent everyone I could send. I had prayed every prayer, rebuked every demon. Prayed every scripture. Then I had done every seducing and manipulative thing I could think to do. I had gone cold, and went loving. Gave him the silent treatment, went full-blown screaming. Full-blown crying. Full-blown……..everything. Remember, my storm was 7 years so I had a lot of time to try out a LOT of things because I finally came to that crossroad where I had been forced to make a decision. And I found this at the crossroad. 

So she called the LORD who spoke to her: The God Who Sees, for she said, “In this place, have I actually seen the One who sees me?” Genesis 16:13

 At this crossroads in my life, I found that God had been there waiting on me to come to the end of myself. But more importantly, He got me. He understood me. He knew me! The whole time I felt like I was approaching Him, always trying to hide my true self because I was ashamed of my weakness. Ashamed of my fears and need to control. I always approached Him lying to myself that I had to be the person God wanted me to be while hiding what I really was.

 At the crossroads, I could no longer hide. I had to come face to face with the fact that God SEES and knows and He was still standing there. Nothing I had done, all those years made Him leave me. I wanted something new that I had never wanted before. I wanted a champion. I wanted a Savior. I wanted Someone else to take this thing over because I had tried and done everything I could. I finally was starting to see something I had never seen before. God could actually pull this off.

 When I look back on my first years, 6 to be exact, I can see that I was very prideful in my thinking and very ignorant in my understanding. How dare I think that I could get through to my spouse better than God. But that was because I didn’t understand that God wanted MORE than I to get through to Him. I didn’t understand God’s love for my husband. I didn’t understand that as much as I wanted my husband back to normal, God wanted my husband to come to know Who his Father was and have a real relationship with Him. I was so blind to God and what He wanted. I had made this all about me and that God was doing this for me, not for Himself. I had placed my relationship with my husband as more important than God’s relationship with us.

 At this turning point in my life, where I saw the God Who sees me, I came to realize that God had been watching me, waiting for me, and as the scripture says, going before the Father praying for ME. Jesus was interceding for ME to surrender, submit and yield my heart and life to Him. I had thought I had………but I was not even close.

 At that crossroads, I made the choice to give God control and no longer be the one that bossed Him around. I gave Him permission to be in charge and from that day forward I had to have long talks and battles with myself to shut my mouth, stop my impatience and need to control, and FACE MY FEARS! I had to tell myself over and over. “Sheila, we are going to trust Him now. We are going to stop this madness where we have to say something, and just BE in the moment and enjoy it.” That atmosphere that was so heavy where my husband knew I was waiting for the opportunity to pounce, went away. He relaxed and suddenly, I was now a safe place for him to come and talk to.  Yeah, I messed up a lot and jumped back into control and tried to tell him what to do, but I quickly saw how badly that went. So I learned to zip it and just listen. I watched in amazement as I saw God working on my husband. I heard my husband saying that he was up in the night, pacing the floor, how God had been waking him up, how he was PRAYING. After all those years, all I had to do was give up? Really? I just had to stop demanding God do this and that and just TRUST HIM and I started to see before my eyes that God was really working. It was 6 months later when my husband discovered the same exact lesson as I did. That his efforts must come to an end. That he must stop trying to get God to do what he wanted and surrender. And he did. He dropped to his knees and cried out to God for help.

 6 and ½ years of us doing everything our way, the wrong way, finally had led us both to come to the realization that we were selfish, self-centered fools and that not only was God waiting for us to surrender, God had never left us, always been there waiting because He was a good loving, TRUSTWORTHY Father Who was capable of handling not only both our lives, but ALL of our lives. He is there, ready, waiting, and watching.

 HE SEES YOU!

“In this place, have I actually seen the One who sees me?” Genesis 16:13

 You start to see that God is FOR YOU, not against you. That God has a good plan, one for prospering you, not destroying you. He is a force in your life that is not out to deceive you, but to honestly really make you better. The biggest eye-opening thing I was able to SEE was that God had no hidden, ulterior motive behind what He was doing. He wasn’t doing anything out of wickedness or bad intentions to harm me, something I had grown up fearful of because of my father. THIS FATHER WAS THE REAL DEAL! THIS Father really saw all of me and still wanted me, where my other father, who was so broken, only saw me as something to use, control, abuse and torment. THIS FATHER was motivated by LOVE, while my other father was motivated by fear, evil, and blindness. This Father was trustworthy! For the first time ever, I found Someone I could trust! That was that crossroads helped me choose because I finally saw God for the first time.

 I pray that when you come to your crossroads, you take the right path!

Standing with you,
Sheila Hollinger

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(~Marriage Revealed Ministries Inc. is committed to helping bring healing and restoration to couples who are struggling in their marriage. We do this through the revelation of Who God is and His heart and design for marriage which never intends abuse in any form. If you suspect abuse in your relationship, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or visit them online at thehotline.org~