I’ll never forget the first time I wanted to divorce my husband.
We were on our honeymoon.
Yep. That idyllic, can’t-get-enough-of-you, crazy-in-love time of splendor and romance. At least, that’s what it’s supposed to be, right?
We were 21, on a tropical island with nothing to do but enjoy each other and yet, we were having a huge, heart-breaking argument!
Have you heard it said that there are really only 3 things couples fight about: sex, family, and money? I believe that. Those three topics touch the very core of our values and identity. My husband had tapped a nerve with me that hit all three of those core issues.
My young husband hadn’t done anything mean or malicious. He wasn’t intentionally hurtful at all. In fact, he was trying, a little too hard perhaps, to be the best husband a man could be. Yet there were things he did that made me feel inferior.
I remember thinking, “maybe we should just break up.”
Then I realized, we had made vows 5 days before that destroyed the possiblity of “breaking up”. You know how when you’re really upset your brain goes through some pretty extreme thoughts? I considered divorce. Or possibly an annullment, that’s a thing, isn’t it? Golly, my parents just spent a ton of money on a wedding though…
And I did make a promise to God.
Oh, man, I have to stick this through.
A fight on one’s honeymoon seems like a terrible thing to happen, but in a way, it was one of the best things. That moment solidified all the vows I had made and really forced me to realize the commitment of marriage. Yes, there will be disagreements. There will be times when it hurts, but I learned right there in the first week that it was up to me, and my husband, to work these things out and find our happy marriage.
Happily Ever After doesn’t just happen.
Flash forward 12 years.
It was fall, and I felt like my whole world was falling apart. I was dealing with change and instability in every area of life:
- My husband’s job
- My home
- My Church
- Our family (new baby)
- My parent’s marriage
- My health
Everything in my life was a wreck, except my marriage and my faith in God.
How did I go from a bride on the brink of divorce to a woman clinging to the rock of a healthy marriage during life’s storms?
I learned some very difficult lessons on marriage in those first years:
- how to love my husband even when I am hurt.
- how to express my hurt to him in a way that was not blaming, but offering a way to build us up together.
- that loving him isn’t about feeling loving toward him.
It’s allowing God’s love for him to come through me. Letting God use me as an instrument of His love for my husband.
And I learned to pray.
When I experienced hurt, I turned to God first. In those moments of crying out in anger and pain, I often realized that I was being selfish and immature. Hearing it from God is A LOT easier than hearing it from any human! God showed me how to seperate the pain and the reaction so I could discuss it with my husband. Many, many times, I learned that I was expecting things of my husband that I had no right to expect!
I began to pray for him regularly.
If there was an area of his character that troubled me–a lack of courage, dilligence, discipline, wisdom–I asked God to bless him in that area rather than pointing it out to him.
Something amazing happens when you turn to God about your husband! Instead of noticing the ways your husband is falling short of your expectations, you begin to notice the ways God is working in his life. You see the growth. You admire the change.
In turn, your feelings of affection for your man will grow!
And a man can’t help but love his wife and try to live up to her admiration when this happens. It’s a beautiful thing!
I’m not perfect by any means. I still sling criticism when I should hold my tongue. I often take him for granted.
But I see the power of God working in his life. I see him becoming more and more who he was meant to be.
And I am thrilled to call him mine.
Begin Your Prayer Journey
If you are not in the habit of praying for your husband, I have created a plan for 14 days of dedicated prayer for different areas of his life. Each day includes a scripture, a prayer as a guide to get you started, and a few of my thoughts.
What could happen in 14 days?
- You’ll learn to turn to God for your husband’s needs.
- You’ll begin to see your husband as God sees him.
- You’ll grow in affection for your husband. Motion leads to emotion!
- You’ll plant the seeds of a long-lasting, happy marriage.
I don’t promise that all your problems will be solved in 2 weeks of praying for your husband.
But what you will find are scriptures, prayer prompts and thoughts to guide you to think about 14 key areas of your husband’s life, both practically and spiritually.
At the end of 2 weeks, you’ll print out a certificate and fill-in-the-blank love note to your husband letting him know about your journey, if you desire.
This makes an excellent gift for Valentine’s Day or your Anniversary.
Your prayer journey doesn’t stop there, though, you can use the same scriptures and skills to begin to pray over your husband daily for the rest of his life!
You can apply the same techniques to other areas of your life as well.
For less than you’d spend on a coffee date, you can get this guide to change your life.
There’s no magic in my words or the ideas presented. The power is from the Lord, and from you, taking the first step in turning to Him to offer your prayers of love for your husband.
Let’s start today!
Have you experienced a hurt that left you doubting your commitment to marriage? What did you do in your time of need? Is there anything I can pray for you about?
I would love to hear from you about the ways you’ve struggled or the affect of prayer in your marriage. Reach out to me to let me know! Comment below, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or JOIN the Conversation on Facebook!
Hugs and tropical breezes,