I want to get this straight right from the start. I agree, your marriage is important. And if your marriage is in trouble that means your marriage restoration is a high priority in your life. But I do not believe your marriage restoration should be your first priority.
I understand what you’re going through. The heartache and confusion of a marriage crisis are the toughest things I’ve ever dealt with. But, when I talk about your marriage crisis I have to talk about your relationship with Jesus. Your marriage restoration should not be your first priority.
Jesus has to be your first priority
There are many husbands and wives who think their marriage was a mistake. They’re looking back with regret at their decision to marry. And they’re wondering now if there is some reasonable way they can correct their mistake. They don’t want to hurt their spouse, their children, or their family. But they just can’t imagine having to live with their mistake for the rest of their lives.
Maybe, this is the way you feel. Or, maybe you have a strong sense this is the way your spouse feels.
In either case, I understand this line of thinking. I’ve been there, on both sides. So I’m not here to pass judgment on anyone for feeling this way.
However, I do want to challenge this way of thinking and the reasonings that go along with it. Read more
Believing your marriage can be healed is tough sometimes. The separation between you and your spouse is so far apart it feels hopeless to close the gap. You can’t undo all the things that went wrong. You can’t undo your history. And so now you look at your situation and all you see is a mountain that feels impossible to climb.
I’ve been there and I know how it feels to want with all my heart to see my marriage healed. While at the same time I had to face a very tough situation that made what I was hoping for appear impossible. But the one thing that kept me from being overwhelmed and discouraged was I dared to believe God and what His word teaches me.
You see, I believe God has a completely different view of your situation than what you’re capable of seeing right now. Jesus made this same distinction between what we see and what God sees when He said these words.
Matthew 19:26 And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Read more
There is something special about brand new. When something brand new comes in your life there are special feelings that come with it. A new car, a new house, new clothes, new tools, new appliances, all share in common that special feeling.
The same can be said about a new marriage. There is excitement and hopeful anticipation for what the future will hold. You don’t know everything this new journey will encounter. But you believe the two of you together can conquer the world.
A brand new marriage, whether it’s the first, second, third or whatever, feels like a new start. There is no bad history, bad memories, or bad feelings between husband and wife. They can take everything they know about life and relationships and apply it to this new marriage. And everything should work out just fine.
I’ll be the first to admit I have a problem deciding when to throw something away and when to save it. The struggle I have is when I look at something thinking I might throw it away, I then think to myself, “maybe if I throw it away now I will one day in the future wish I still had it.” Because what I’m really trying to decide is, has this lost it’s usefulness to me, or does it still have some form of value to me?
That’s the same problem I see a lot people have when it comes to their marriage. They are trying to decide if their marriage has lost its usefulness to them or not. If they determine that it no longer has the value that it once did, such as “makes me happy,” “fulfills me,” “completes me,” or “satisfies all my needs,” they are ready then to dispose of it.
“What right do you have to destroy my dreams?” I asked my wife. It was a question I felt very strongly about many years ago when she wanted to end our marriage. And it is a question I still feel very strongly about today.
I take the marriage vows very serious. I believe the vows are promises of commitment to see the marriage through even the toughest of times. Vows like “for better or worse, in sickness or health, for richer or poorer,” are meant to foretell our commitment to the marriage and our spouse with the presumption that there is a good chance we will face any number of trials that will test our resolve to stay committed to the marriage.