Thursday, February 21, 2013

Married to an unbeliever

Paula Hendricks posts a thought-provoking piece from a reader on her long marriage to an unbeliever. The anonymous contributor writes well, candidly, and sympathetically.

Her epiphany (and at least the title of the "challenge" she cites) parallels one of the twin central points of the best marriage-book I've read, Emerson Eggerichs' Love and Respect. It's just one of those ironies that the very thing God commands wives to give their husbands is the thing many women find it difficult or well-night impossible to give: respect. Likewise, the very thing He calls husbands to give is what many men aren't great at giving: love.

But men long for, yearn for, and desire respect from their wives; and wives long for, yearn for, and desire love from their husbands.

The mark of a stalemated marriage is where each is waiting for the other to step up and make that move of obedience. The mark of a growing disciple of Christ is that (s)he doesn't wait for others' obedience.


Jill Miller said...

Husband and I went to Christian marriage counseling many years ago. One overwhelming recollection from that time was a similar realization: " mean I shouldn't be waiting for *him* to do it first??? Ohhhh.....:::gulp:::." The heart of the matter was recognizing that my pursuit of changing *him* was a desperately wrong pursuit. I was squinting around the logs in my own eyes, trying to poke the specks out of his. You can imagine how much pain my lack of sight caused.

Anyway. Yes - he longs for respect. But that can only be given *sincerely* when God and I have taken care of those logs that obscure my vision of all the good and respectable qualities God created in my husband.

Carl C. said...

I'm mulling this one over, a LOT - it hits all-too-close to home. Have appreciated your exhortation to read 1 Peter as well.