So, I kinda feel like today is my confession.
This post is likely to be raw and vulnerable but someone needs this word. Or perhaps it’s only me?
Many times when I’m speaking, people will ask me if I discern what God is doing in my husband’s faith life. I reply that unfortunately or perchance fortunately, God rarely gives me insight into my husband’s heart journey.
However, I pray for him every day, covering many aspects of his life, career, health, salvation, protection, etc. etc. I believe the Lord has instructed me through His Word to pray unceasingly for Him and to cover him with the promise of 1 Corinthians 7:14, which holds great power and authority as a believer married to an unsaved spouse.
However, on Easter Sunday morning in March, 2016, God opened up a big ole pile of revelation to me.
Why on Sunday morning and especially why on Easter?
A rare event to be sure, both the revelation and the fact that my husband attended church with myself and our daughter, Caitie. This is our selfie before church began.
There are so many things I love about this photo. But the light shining directly on our heads is crazy and filled with brilliance.
Once again…. Weird. But wildly cool. Could this photo be reflecting the glory of God’s children? I don’t know. But these are things I love to think about.
Anyhoo, moving along.
It was nearly the end of the service, the worship team took the stage and in an unusual event our pastor invited anyone to come forward who wanted to be touched by God. And many went forward. I stood, as the awesomeness of the music compelled me to worship. A minute later, my daughter stood.
My husband did not.
He remained seated…….
AND THAT’S WHEN IT HAPPENED.
I began to sense the Holy Spirit speaking to me about Mike. And Yikes, it was revelatory and profound and difficult.
It took me a few weeks to process what God revealed in that moment. I have wrestled with the information and I have grieved. And I have apologized.
A week or so ago, I was on the love-seat and my husband on the couch. I looked over at him and started our conversation, “I need to tell you something.” Most men panic when they hear this.
“Don’t panic. I just need to say something and can you just hear me out?”
Hesitantly, “O, -kay.”
“I recently realized that I have caused you to become bitter toward God. I didn’t mean to do it and I’m grieved that this has happened.” I watch his face; he’s listening but guarded.
“I’ve come to realize that it could be due to the ministry in which I’m leading or perhaps because of my need for healing and turning fully to Jesus in our early years of marriage, I made God the problem in between the two of us. In our early years, like most marriages, we had struggles. Unfortunately, we didn’t seek marriage counseling and in my frustration and pain, I turned to God.”
“Jesus healed me from so much and I, in error, believed that if only you would come to Christ, everything in our marriage would magically be made better. Sheesh! What an idiot.” I rushed on as I didn’t want to lose my courage to own and act on this revelation.
“Our problems were rarely about faith. And somehow, I may have made God the only answer. I was naive or immature, likely both. But on Easter Sunday the Lord revealed all of this to me and I’m greatly grieved over it. I ask your forgiveness. But more importantly, I ask that you would see my part in this came out of immaturity and please, please don’t be bitter at God.”
“God loves you so much, Mike. And in spite of having a block-headed wife, please, please don’t look at God with eyes of bitterness.”
Okay, there it is.
I’m still processing and praying through this revelation, our conversation and the implications. Geeze. I even had to call my daughter and share and apologize. She said, “Mom, this isn’t news to me. I’ve actually talked about this very thing with a few friends.”
Good Lord, Almighty!
Why am I sharing this with you today? I want others who are waiting on loved one’s salvation to receive a word of caution through my story. I don’t want you to become a bitter root in another’s faith journey.
So, the great thing about this apology was the ensuing conversation between Mike and myself. It’s was honest, clarifying and it was hopeful. We talked about his thoughts about God and he was very honest with me. He remains undecided about it all. And my confession broke the bitterness that may have held power in our marriage and in his faith journey.
Okay, I hope all this isn’t too much. Sometimes I feel as though I must be brutally honest about my struggles as well as my victories. And in the telling of this story, healing happened and perhaps healing will happen in another marriage.
Jesus, I pray with all that I have within me, in faith, this is true. In Your name, Jesus. AMEN
Author Bio: Lynn Donovan is a women’s ministry leader, a retreat/conference speaker and an ordinary mom and wife who shares with audiences her everyday adventures of walking with the King. Her delight is igniting women’s hearts with Holy Spirit fire, inspiring wives and mothers to step fully into their high and holy calling of marriage and motherhood with joy, laughter and God’s favor.
She has been featured guest on the Moody Radio Network, Focus on the Family, Dr. James Dobson’s FamilyTalk, FamilyLife Today and the 700 Club. She is the co-author of the award-winning book, Winning Him Without Words and also Not Alone, Trusting God to Help You Raise Godly Kids In a Spiritually Mismatched Marriage. She has a son and a daughter and lives with her husband in Temecula, California. Visit Lynn online at LynnDonovan.org & Spiritually Unequal Marriage.com, Facebook, Twitter and Lynn Donovan’s YouTube Channel.