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Being Obedient To Be Refined

08/15/2013 - Author: Jennifer - 31 Comments

I have wrote about my marriage and how hard it is. Nothing new there, right? However, when asked about radical obedience, I have to pause. Staying in my marriage shouldn’t be about radical obedience. I feel as if I have given up so much and I don’t want to give up anymore of my dreams and desires. However, I feel that is what I am being asked to do. Again. Radical obedience. Past choices on my husband’s and my part have led us here. I feel I am in a prison of consequences and unhappiness, but I have to believe that God still has better for me if I start saying yes to Him, listen to Him, and allow Him to use what bad I have done for my good and His glory. That is going to take radical obedience.

I am learning is that I have not loved my husband enough. I am not saying that I caused him to hurt me. I am not saying that it is my fault that he made the choices he made, or even the excuses he tried to provide me. I am not excusing him for what he has done and the hurt and humiliation he has caused me. What I am saying is that I am learning  that my love for my husband has been conditional. If Matt wouldn’t do this or that, then loving him would be easy. Maybe so, but it isn’t the love God has called you and me to show to His children. I have to love unconditionally~~ that shows I am His child and that I know Him (1 John 4:7-8).  Right now, I am in the midst of hurt and yet, I feel numb. (That scares me). I am married as an act of obedience to my vows and to my God. Honestly, I can’t say I FEEL love for him. I don’t feel that I am CHOOSING to love either.

Is God using this for me to be refined? To be better? To love my husband more? To love through the hurt and humiliation? I think He might. Maybe I need to allow Him to~~ to open up my heart and let Him heal.  Yes, I know Jesus loved through hurt and humiliation (and still loves us like nobody else can). To answer question 4 from Chapter 2 of What Happens When Women Say Yes to God by Lysa TerKeurst ~~ YES~~this is beyond me. Maybe I should be embarrassed to admit, but allowing God to do a work in me and not giving up on my marriage seems to be radical obedience on my part. (Side note~~ I am NOT talking abuse or dangerous situations. I am not talking about people having affairs without remorse).

I have also had a Say What? moment. For now, since I still don’t know if it is me or Him and I am waiting to see what happens and keeping it to myself.  If it is Him, I am going to say yes! If it is me, then please God, don’t allow me to do act on it.

Be blessed:)

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Discussion (31 Comments)

  1. by Sarah

    Thank you for sharing your heart! You are going through some tough stuff and sometimes it’s difficult to know if we are doing the right thing. I’m glad you are able to call on Lysa’s 5 question to help guide you. Great post today.

  2. Thank you for sharing, I know it is not easy! For the past 14 years, my husband and I have our up and downs. For years, I had to trust Him to make everything work out. Marriages are hard, and I applaud you for trusting God to pull you through!

  3. Thank you for sharing something that has no doubt been painful for you to go through. While I may not have experience the exact same circumstances, I do know how difficult it can be to forgive someone who has hurt you very much. and to radically love someone when you are hurting, but you are doing it because you choose to radially love.

  4. Dear Jen,
    Thank you for bravely sharing your heart;…I will pray for you and Matt today and for your marriage. I hope/pray you both have friends around you both, who will support you…hugs to you.

  5. It is incredibly encouraging to hear your heart. Thank you for your transparency! I am praying for this season you are in… just know that you are helping others along your journey.

  6. by Nici

    Wow. Thank you so much for your transparency.

  7. by Shelly Smith

    I too feel like staying in my marriage is what God is asking. It is hard when you are not happy and you think you want out. Then God reminds us that we are to forgive and love unconditionally. I have been married for 22 years and have wanted out for at least 10 years. Not every day or every week. There have been good times in there. But for the most part, I have been unhappy, felt unloved, felt rejected. Went untouched. Especially after the birth of my daughter 6 years ago. But like the song Warren Barfield sings in the Fireproof movie. “And if we try to leave, may God send Angels to guard the door”. We have made that our song and we try. I stay because I feel like God will change my husbands heart as much as he has changed mine. I stay because I want to honor God. (((HUGS))) I know it is hard to put your story out there sometimes. But you may help someone by doing so.

    • Thank you for sharing your heart here. I hope our stories will help. Prayers sent for your marriage. Be blessed:)

  8. by Lillian

    Thank you so much for writing this, I know Im not crazy.That is ecxactly where I am but I know He is still in control.

  9. I thank you for your bravery to speak so openly about your troubles. I have been exactly where you are and felt such shame that I couldn’t talk about it. There are so many woman struggling with marriage problems and they feel like they are alone. I was separated for over 2 years, but by the grace of God my marriage was restored. I’m not trying to peddle my website, but if you are interested my church just did a video testimonial about my husband and I and I have posted it on my blog Everyone thought I was crazy for sticking by my husband, but now are marriage is incredible. We still have our ups and downs, but we trust God to help us through it all. I’ll be praying for you and your husband.

  10. I Cant tell you what your post means to me personally, My husband has not cheated, but you are so right in maybe our problems stem from me not loving him enough, maybe i am subjecting him to conditional love, If he had a job, if he worked on our marriage more, i would be able to love him easier, I do love him, and I am feeling very convicted at the moment to obey God and love him more with God’s love. Thank you for sharing your heart, my prayers are with you and I hope yours will be with me. In Christ…Kristin

    • Prayers sent! I don’t know if your problems are not because you loved your husband enough or not. I know that with me, when problems do come, I am not forgiving enough. I don’t make excuses, but I am needing to love more like Jesus and not Jen. Thank you for your words and prayers. Be blessed:)

  11. by Ruthie

    Thank you for sharing this! I stumbled upon this blog…I think through a friend’s link on Facebook, and I’m relieved, in this moment, that I did. I have felt this same way for MONTHS! Staying in this, trying to do what I think is right, not by my standards, but by God’s, out of obedience rather than joyful willingness. Most of the time I am discouraged and think, “What’s the point?!” Occasionally I find encouragement. In rare precious moments I even feel love and happiness. It’s hard to find someone who can relate, and even harder to take the risk of sharing how we truly feel, confused, angry, hurt, doubtful, shame, etc. Thank you, thank, you, thank you for taking the risk to share your heart!

    • Thank you for your words! It can feel lonely when you don’t think anyone else has gone through what you are experiencing. Something that is helping me is going to counseling with my husband. Having unbiased help is great. Thank you so much for stopping by. I really do appreciate it. Be blessed:)

  12. by Cristi

    I just want to encourage you to hang in there and trust God with your obedience. Two weekends ago, my family got to visit my parents and participate in their vow renewal ceremony as they celebrated 50 years of marriage. When I was 8 years old and they had been married about 17 or 18 years, my mom left my dad. My dad came and sought to save the marriage. After a year of separation, they got back together, and as an 8 year old girl I was thrilled to have my mom and dad and whole family back together. But it wasn’t until their vow renewal ceremony that I learned the whole story behind their getting back together. My mom shared that God spoke to her and reminded her of the commitment she had made in her vows and God told her that He was not releasing her from that commitment. She said that in obedience to God and because God would not release her from the vows she had made, she went back with my dad, but she didn’t feel love for him at the time and wasn’t sure she would ever love him again. I knew they were committed to their marriage, but even at 8, I knew that it still wasn’t quite right and for years I prayed for them that God would renew and restore their love for each other. I saw little glimpses of that and God did that little by little, but it wasn’t until I grew up and moved away that their love really began to grow again. My mom said that she never knew before if she would ever be able to renew her vows, but that now she loves my dad more than ever and is so thankful to God for restoring her love for him. God blessed her obedience abundantly and she is so happy now. I also heard Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of Billy Graham, share her testimony once of how she went through a time when she did not love her husband at all, but God told her to stay with him and remain faithful to the vows she had made. God also told her to spend the time falling more in love with God and to not worry about whether she felt love for her husband and to simply show love to him whether or not she felt it. I think she said she did that for a year and God restored her love for her husband. God will bless your obedience. Keep on open heart to God and to loving your husband and let God do the rest. Bless you.

    • Thank you for sharing you/your parents story. I am so glad that your family was saved. It is encouraging. Be blessed:)

  13. by Dawn

    I didn’t love my husband unconditionally and he had an affair with a 20 year old (he was 45). Lack of attention at home is no excuse to have an affair, but through these 2 plus years I have learned a lot about myself and I would give anything for my husband to come back to me/us/his family. He has no desire to do so. My heart has softened and wants us to work it out. I have forgiven him and myself. I pray his heart softens and wants to come back. Thanks for your blog. It reiterates that it happens and I wish I had a mentor early in my marriage to tell me how me as a wife how i should be towards my husband. Every chance I get I let my sons and daughter know how to treat the opposite sex so that they don’t end up like their father and I did. Please pray for us for reconciliation. I will pray for you as well. Keep God as #1 and the rest will fall into place. Keep choosing to love your husband.

    • Thank you for your comment and your honesty. I am sorry your family is going through this experience. I have prayed for you. Be blessed:)

  14. by Mel S

    Your blog is an answer to my prayer of whether or not I should stay in my marriage. Choosing to stay goes against every thought and feeling I’ve been having. It is so helpful to have a solid answer on whether or not I should stay, even when I don’t love my husband anymore. There isn’t infidelity in our relationship either, but with all that’s been said and done, it’s almost too much for me to bear anymore.
    I’ll keep hanging in there and hoping and praying that God will continue to change me and make me more like Him. Thank you for your personal story!

    • Yes–hang in there. Lean into God! Most couples are happy they stuck it out! Praying we have better and stronger marriages through this. Be blessed:)

  15. I love reading about your obedience to God. Keep going, Sister. He’s using you greatly!!

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