“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” James 1:5 (ESV)
“If you bail out during the storms, you will miss the rainbows.” Anonymous
- It’s time to meet with your Savior! Grab your Bible, journal, and a pen.
- Read James 1:1-8. If you have time read the whole chapter. Pray and ask God to give you wisdom in your marriage. He wants the very best for you and your husband!
A Godly Marriage Starts with You
Marriage is hard work! The truth is that God uses marriage to sanctify us and make us more like Christ. In my own life, I see God using my marriage to transform, refine, and chisel me into the woman He wants me to be, and hopefully someone who looks more and more like Jesus as the years go by. In the area of marriage, God has taught me many things. As I prayed about what to share with you, I felt God narrowing the many lessons to a few essential, practical, daily, relevant anchors that have proven foundational in how I love the husband He has given me.
We all have seasons in which marriage is intensely and painfully hard. However, God walks with us, equipping, filling, enabling, and sustaining us. We must abide in Him and trust His sovereign goodness and character. Here are some things I do to reflect what God has taught me about marriage:
- Daily, I pour God’s Word into my soul. I have asked God to give me a passion for His Word, to make reading it a delight, and to use it to transform me and the life I live.
- I ask God to start with me and transform me from the inside out. I cannot change another. It is not my place to be my husband’s Holy Spirit. I put my blinders up and focus only on God, my relationship with Him, and the plank in my own eye (Luke 6:41).
- I guard my heart from becoming bitter, hard, critical, self-righteous, and unforgiving according to this verse: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it” (Proverbs 4:23). I daily confess any bitterness (Ephesians 4:31). When I sense bitterness or hardness of heart, I get on my face and cry out for God to cleanse me.
- I desire to be a blessing to my husband (Proverbs 31:12). I know each husband is different, and I ask God for wisdom on how to love the husband He has chosen for me. I intercede daily for my husband. I pray for God to speak to his heart, give him wisdom, lighten his load, lead him, and pour out His favor on him. I purpose not to bear down, belittle, bash, or criticize my husband, especially in front of my children, but to build up and honor him with my thoughts and actions.
- I cling to God daily, walking in intimate relationship with Him. He is my refuge, best friend, counselor, comforter, healer of my wounds, hope, provider, and protector. Because I know I am accepted, pursued with a steadfast and faithful love, forgiven, and treasured, I can love my husband and others well.
If I could leave you with one last word of encouragement, it is that you and I do all of this for an audience of One. Our husband, children, friends, or extended family may never see, notice, or know all that we do or see our heart behind it. He sees. He knows. It brings Him delight when we walk with Him—loving Him, and loving those He places in our lives.
Blessings and Love,
Questions to Ponder
- Am I daily in God’s Word, reading, meditating, and applying what it says?
- Are my blinders up? Am I dealing with the planks in my own eyes? Am I asking God to transform me from the inside out?
- Am I attentive to the condition of my heart? Am I keeping it clean from bitterness, wrath, criticism, self-righteous judgment, unforgiveness, etc.? Am I confessing my sins and unholy attitudes? Am I dwelling on what is pure, lovely, and true?
- Am I asking God how I can bless my husband? Am I interceding daily for him? Am I building him up?
- Am I clinging to God, walking closely to Him, in constant conversation, both listening and speaking? Am I going to God first when I’m hurt, in need of counsel, or needing to be filled?
- Am I a people pleaser or a God pleaser?
On your bathroom mirror and throughout the house, write this with dry erase markers: “Live for an Audience of One.” Ask your husband how you can pray for him…then pray. Study the attributes and character of God. Here are a few attributes to get you started:
- God is good (Psalm 25:8)
- He is gracious (Hebrews 4:16)
- He is comforting (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
- He is compassionate (Exodus 34:6)
- He is patient (2 Peter 3:9)
- He is our shepherd ( Psalm 23:1)
- He loves steadfastly (Romans 8:35, 39)
- He is merciful (Titus 3:5)
- He is wise ( Romans 11:33)
- He is faithful ( Psalm 89:18)
- He is sovereign (Matthew 10:29)
- He is unchanging (Malachi 3:6)
- He is ever-present ( Hebrews 13:5)