There are no perfect marriages. Just as there is no perfect person. There is always that opportunity to marry a Nabal, knowingly or unknowingly. You can find Nabal in 1 Samuel 25. He’s described as being:
Nabal’s act of ungratefulness towards David, the son of Jesse, started an unforseeable war. Abigail, Nabal’s wife, heard about his selfish behavior. It was her swift actions and wise words that saved them all, including her husband, from the hand of David and his four hundred men. Her bravery also saved David from sinning by fighting a battle that was for God to do.
By now are you wondering, “Since divorce isn’t an option for you (for whatever reason), is there a way to stay sane in a difficult marriage without feeling drained and powerless?
Karla Downing wrote, “10 Lifesaving Principles For Women In Difficult Marriages,” which shares practical insight, biblical wisdom for women who want to be victorious in their marriage instead of feeling like a victim. There are two lifesaving principles, I’ve highlighted below. These principles, I believe, set the stage for applying all the principles outlined in the book.
Lifesaving Principle 1: Understanding Scriptural Truths, which I label Getting Your Mind Straight, is the first principle that needs to be understood. How you view yourself is critical to how you respond to your husband. It will impact your perception on Biblical truths, as well.
Difficult marriages can be a rollercoaster ride. Everyone is happy and within 5 minutes because of nothing you did, happiness takes a dive into meanness. Therefore, having a personal relationship with God is vital and memorizing His word.
Karla Downing writes, “The wife submits to her husband by respecting him, loving him and trusting his decisions as long as they don’t violate her conscience or God’s Word.” (Ephesians 5: 22–26) That’s a big statement. It implies that you must know God’s Word and that you have a conscience which informs you of right or wrong. Our conscience can be fickle at times, but when we sift it through the truth of God’s Word, the confusion subsides.
An understanding of the marriage relationship and you as a wife is vitally important. Think about Abigail. She was submissive and honest by telling her husband, Nabal, when he wasn’t drunk what she did. This is also a sign of discerning when to speak and not. The Bible describes her as being discerning and beautiful. Do you possess these qualities? If yes, then this book will help you sharpen your discerning skills. Now, if not, you’ll learn them.
Throughout this book it will remind you of clichés, myths, inaccurate interpretations of scripture and faulty thinking that is holding you back from being the best YOU you can be in this marriage. Knowing who you are and whose you are builds a firm foundation for not passively allowing your husband to pull you down. This book is wonderful in helping you recognize some of them.
Lifesaving Principle 8: Set Boundaries, which I label Disciplines. I am an advocate for developing Spiritual Disciplines. Disciplines are essential for all Believers because it helps establish a space in your life for growing in love with God, your neighbor as yourself.
Karla Downing wrote, “Jesus set boundaries in His interactions with others.” This is something that you need to do. You are more than the sum of your parts. Jesus gave His life for you. It’s time:
This section of the book helps you set personal limits, beyond the usual, “What are you willing to accept or tolerate?” You go even deeper, focusing on, “Will you continue the way you are going or change?”
Each chapter offer suggestions to help you accomplish what you are learning. It will take time. “Pray without ceasing” is one command that should be a constant.
I skimmed the surface of this book, but please, take the time to read it and apply a chapter at a time. Living in a difficult marriage can be exhausting and debilitating but with God all things are possible. There is noway anyone can guarantee that this or the reading of any book will change your marriage, so put your trust in God and stand on His word that He will lead you in the way you should go.
Lastly, get an accountability partner. There is nothing like having a sister, praying for you while you are in the struggle.
Note: Now I don’t won’t you to think that only women have difficult marriages. Nope. Men can as well. All the principle ideas can apply to men. Be careful, because depression in men is different from women and can have deadly outcomes. Men talk to someone you trust or get a Christian Counselor.
Monthly Opportunities for Growth–June
The Forgotten God: Who Is He?
Tuesday, June 8, 2021, a Webinar learning about who is the Forgotten God and 5 things we need to know about Him. For more information: Click Here
Book to Read:
By Anthony Wilson
It’s a man’s reflection of 30 days of renewing his life in Christ. He is a guest on Hanging Out With Jesus Podcast.
Spiritual Disciplines to Practice:
Remember, God loves and uniquely make you. You are one of a kind and so special that Christ Jesus gave up His life so that you could live and live abundantly. Grab hold to the precepts, commands and statues in God’s Word and never look down. Look straight ahead. The Bridegroom is Coming!
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