Have you walked away from a conversation with your spouse that left you fearful, confused, and questioning everything….even to the point of feeling aggravated and wanting to quit?

We can lose our way when we come out of a conversation with our spouse or witness their behaviors that upset us. They can be very convincing – when they seem so confident in their beliefs, stubborn in their pride, and adamant that you are to blame, so they feel justified in their choices. Sometimes our spouse can be the opposite – riddled with guilt and shame or tormented by condemnation to such an extent, that they believe you are much better off without them…and even that conversation can set you in a tailspin.

If you walk away from these conversations feeling completely defeated, afraid, or like you are losing faith and hope, don’t fret! There is a reason for this, and there IS a solution – a good one, that will help you regain your faith and hope again. 

First, we need to understand that feelings are not truth, so what we SEE and hear might be truth in the moment, or a version of their truth, but it’s NOT God’s truth, and that is the ultimate measure by which we must judge. I like to live by this tenet :  “If God is NOT okay with it, then I trust He is working toward changing it.” While we might FEEL like God isn’t doing anything, or is no match for our spouse’s willful stubbornness, it’s really about what we believe, not about God’s ability. The good news is that all we have to do is work on our beliefs, because we have not yet come to know Him personally in this area! Take comfort in knowing that THIS is exactly what our Father wants – for us to come to a place where we are confident in Him and that we don’t stay stuck in our fears, worry, and unbelief for long, because we have come to a place where we can quickly go back to what we know about Him………that HE IS ABLE!

When we lack that personal relationship with God and we see or hear something related to our lost spouse, we become MORE confident IN the state of our spouse’s heart and mind, rather than in the heart and mind of God. We end up giving MORE power to the hard-heartedness of our lost spouse, because we are more familiar with who our spouse is, than with Who God is. We tend to trust in what we know and are familiar with. 

It happens to many of us, over and over, until we gain a more intimate relationship and belief in God, His love, power, and ability. It’s an easy thing to come out of; we just have to realize that we took a wrong turn, then correct where we put our faith and trust – in our lost spouse and not in God – and finally, understand why we did it. We don’t know Him as we should, so we need to work on our beliefs!

Here is a great scripture to petition, pray and believe for yourself so you don’t get swept into this deception. 

Proverbs 30:8 Keep falsehood and deceitful words far from me…

Should you debate with them when they voice their opinions? 

The struggle to set them right, clear your name, and change their mind is going to try and convince you it’s the right thing to do. But, in most situations, it’s pointless. 

We should, however, for many situations, listen and at least acknowledge what they are thinking, feeling, and believing right now. We are not asked by God to conform and be persuaded by what they believe, but to hold fast to HIM, His character and nature. We are not to take what they are saying and let it bring fear and dread that they are never going to change. Most times we respond due to the fact that what they just said terrifies us. We also tend to fear that if we say nothing, we are going to cause them to think we are ok with it, or that we are encouraging or enabling them. The Holy Spirit hardly ever gave me anything to tell my husband; most times I was speaking out of hurt, fear and pride. God didn’t give me anything because He knew my husband wasn’t receptive to hearing it, AND God wanted to be the one to speak to him, to develop that relationship with him. 

We must TRUST in the Lord, that this is the season our spouse is in. God is going to turn it around WHEN it’s the proper time for them, and they WILL come out of the darkness into the light when HE opens that door. He wants to ensure they see the light, and that it draws them, not repels them. He wants to ensure they are fully ready to come out of the darkness because the darkness has started to suck the life out of them, and they are no longer getting out of it what they wanted. They are READY for change. 

That is the difference between us and God. WE are ready for change, so we try to force the light on them. God is PATIENT and waits for their heart’s DESIRE to change. Then He reveals the way out. We must trust Him, for His perfect timing is based on your spouse’s readiness…NOT your readiness.

We may feel we are ready from day one. But, are we really? God looks at certain things in us to see if we are ready. We are led by fear, worry, insecurity, loneliness, and just being sick and tired of the suffering, all of which will determine if we are ready. 

But God!

 He looks at those things and sees we are NOT ready. A good parent doesn’t let their child’s unbelief, lack of faith, fears, insecurities, or pride, go unaddressed. He doesn’t give us what we want, if our wants are based on anything that is NOT good for our character. While God is VERY much in favor of our marriages being restored, He is not going to be persuaded to do it quickly, just because we are afraid; He is going to address our fears first. He is not going to restore us because we are insecure; He is going to reveal Himself in such a way, that you will be secure in Him. I think you get my point. He is a good parent who will work out anything in us that prevents or hinders us, from believing, being strong in our faith, or having trust and confidence in Him.

As a good Father, He truly has our interests at heart and is solely motivated by what is best for us! All we need to do is just learn to TRUST IN HIM!

Standing with you,
Sheila Hollinger

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