Remember that it is a marriage of equals. Neither is subordinate to the other, although there must be a head and leader in the husband who will be the protector and provider for the most part, and although there may be situations in which the wife works and brings in more than the husband. But the family should willingly submit to the leadership of the husband and father, who should be submitting, in turn, to the Father in Heaven, and should be fulfilling his responsibilities in a loving, honorable, and spiritual manner. Marriage should never be a power struggle, although many make it into that. This is driven by pride or the desire to be right in any situation. This attitude is destructive and should be addressed and submitted in prayer to God where the Father will then turn the attitude of the heart to something more beautiful and pleasing.
Most importantly, we should remember that both spouses are inherently flawed and need help to become the people that we desire to be, that the other desires us to be, and that God desires us to be. So, when we find moments such as Paul wrote about in Romans 7, when we desire to do right and just don’t seem to have the power within us to do so, then we should always take the situation to God and ask His power and wisdom to make us into what we need to be. This is especially true when you have strong feelings or wounds from the past that seem insurmountable. With God all things are possible.
Never forget that the Bible says it is the “hardness of our hearts” that leads us to divorce. There should never be divorce. Once we have been joined together with our spouse in heart and spirit, there cannot be a dissolution without pain and damage to ourselves and our children that came from our bond. It is a Satanic lie to say that there is nobility in divorce or that things will be better once the divorce is executed. We should avoid this at all costs, always working through the pain and damage that might come between us and our spouse. But certainly, there are times when divorce might be the only answer if one spouse is committed to sin and is abusive beyond our capability to endure, refusing to change, or if the spouse is bringing harm to the children in some selfish, evil way. But the decision should be worked out with God and according to His principles, with love and the greater good for all involved as the ultimate aim. Try not to let hard or hateful feelings drive your actions because, when you do, you will inevitably shoot past the mark of proper action or you will be too consumed with bitter anger that you will not even want to do the right thing.
God does not desire that we should suffer needlessly or that we be abused, although there are certainly times in our lives when our suffering is part of His plan. But He does not want the little ones to suffer during their formative years in ways that may hobble them the rest of their lives. It is an unavoidably tragic fact that divorce prospers in our fallen world, primarily when we habitually practice selfishness and let our minds and hearts drift into sin. But there is a better way when we turn to God. Over time, if we put in the effort necessary for a healthy relationship, with God and our spouse, and cultivate the right thoughts, the marriage grows into something so beautiful, so much bigger than we could be individually. Such a marriage is joy manifested for all involved, and is a powerful tool in the hands of our Lord, witnessing His power and His love to a fallen world. As always, we can head off many of our troubles by controlling the mind, renewing it through contact with God daily, with meditation on His word, and by always thinking positive thoughts of our spouse.
(Continued on the next blog posting)