Love intercedes-- Beloved, I pray that in all aspects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers. You cannot change your spouse. Insanity has been described as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Isn't that what happens when you try and change your mate? It's frustration as the highest level. At some point you need to realize that it's not something you can change. But what you can do is become a wise farmer. A farmer cannot make a seed grow into a fruitful crop. He can not argue, manipulate, or demand it to bear fruit. What he can do is plant the seed into fertile soil, give it water and nutrients, protect it from weeds, and then turn it over to God. This challenge is not about changing your spouse. It's about you daring to love. If yo take the Love Dare seriously, there is a high chance you will be personally changed from the inside out. And if you carry out each dare your spouse will likely be changed and your marriage will begin to bloom. It may take month, or even years. But regardless of the soil you're working with you are to plan for success. You are to nurture the soil of your mate's heart and then depend on God for the results. God is sovereign. He does things His way. He's not a genie in a lamp that submits to your every wish. But He does love you and desires in intimate relationship with you. This doesn't happen apart from prayer. Prayer works best when coming from a humble heart that is in a right relationship with God and others. The Bible says "Confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another." Have you ever wondered why God gives you overwhelming insight into your spouse's hidden faults? Do you really think it's for endless nagging? No, it is for effective kneeling. So turn your complaints into prayers and watch the Master work while you keep your hands
clean. Pray for his heart. Pray for her attitude. Pray for your responsibilities before God. Pray for truth to replace lie. Pray that forgiveness would replace bitterness. Pray for a genuine breakthrough in your marriage. And then pray for your hearts desires- for love and honor to become the norm. Pray for romance and intimacy to go to a deeper level. "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you." (Matthew 7:7)
"You are to nurture the soil of your mate's heart and then depend on God for the results. God is sovereign. He does things His way. He's not a genie in a lamp that submits to your every wish."
I can see how someone can take yesterday's challenge and turn it into praying and asking God to make changes in their spouse to benefit themselves. I know on more than one occasion I have been guilty of this. If only God would change my hubby and have him this way or that way... funny, he never did change and things got a lot worse for me before they got better.
I have learned over this past year that my prayers for my hubby need to be true to who I am, who he is and the God I serve. My "issues" I have with my hubby are not my issues at all. I have learned that they are between God and my hubby to work out and like this chapter says.. "God is not a genie in a lamp that submits to my every wish." This has been a hard lesson for me but one that has stayed true that I can say I finally fully understand now.
I can not change who my hubby is. I can not change his demons he has or fight his battles for him-for us. These things are between him and God and together God will direct my hubby to the path He thinks fit. It may not be the path either of us have for ourselves but God makes His own plans.
So praying for my hubby yesterday, several times during the day was easy. I prayed for my hubby's relationship with God not defined in my words but what my hubby defines as a relationship. I prayed for my hubby to find peace with his demons. And then I prayed for my hubby to find strength to continue on the path of being the man he wants and knows he can be. I prayed a variation of this over and over again but continued to tell God "I understand your wishes for my hubby are between You and him and this has nothing to do with me. I have no control and can only pray for strength to grow between my hubby and God." Saying these words over and over again and acknowledging to God I understand this is out of my power felt pretty good. I almost felt as if I was being told, "Let go Michelle and love him freely." So, that is what I am going to do.
I enjoyed praying for my hubby during the day, for our marriage, for our family and will continue to try and keep this on the forefront of my mind daily. Prayer doesn't only have to be done at meals and bedtime. I feel it will do only more good in my marriage to keep praying during the day.
I am letting go and loving him freely.
Well, that's a bummer (the above blog). Am I allowed to read my spouse's blog before I write my own? I tend to avoid doing so, as I am afraid doing so may impact my blog...my feelings...my response.
I was right. As usual.
I hereby declare myself "demon free". Is that how it works? If so, where do I sign. Hmm...somebody call someone.
I prayed for Peace, Security, and Happiness for my wife. For my wife's heart. I prayed numerous times throughout the day. In fact, so much so, that my wife offered to buy my a rug (a reference to our Muslim friends).
We all our responsible for our own actions. We are all accountable to someone. Most of all, we are accountable to ourselves. I have learned a lot. I have seen my wife experience incredible highs and incredible lows during our 10-year relationship, all of which were drive by what I had done or not done.
I understand that I lead my family. I understand that I set the tone and the path that they follow. Sure, some days I think about it and want to go hide somewhere for just a few hours of "me time." But, I accept my responsibility that God has bestowed upon me and look forward to working at being the best man, husband, leader--I can be.
No matter what, I know my wife loves me, forgives me, and respects me.
Now, I have to learn to do the same thing (for myself).