I wish I could say I have a "perfect" marriage or know couples who have it all together but that is just not the case. What I have learned throughout the years is that marriage is a learning and growing experience. Each day I get to see this growth as I draw nearer to God and place him first not only in my life but my marriage as well. I can still recall the day when I prayed for God to mold me into the perfect helpmate for my husband. I was not quite sure how this could be possible, especially because I did not know what parts of my character would have to be sacrificed to make this desire a reality. At the time when I said this particular prayer, I did not know it would require me stepping aside many times to allow God's transforming power to work within me. So without further ado here are lessons 6-11 and be sure to click on 11 Years, 11 Lessons (Part One) for 1-5 in this series.
With my wedding anniversary rapidly approaching, I decided to reflect back over the years and was just amazed at how far God had brought my husband and I. I was just 21 years old when we got married and did not understand what I was thoroughly getting myself into at the time. I remember hearing from those closest to me, "Are you sure you want to do this?" At first, these words caused doubts to form in my mind, but I believed my husband was heaven sent. Our initial attempts to make our lives become one flesh were rocky, and we encountered many challenges we were not sure how to face. Even though we both knew God, our relationships with him at that time were more like the on again, off again type. As we began to place God at the head of our marriage, we began to notice a significant shift happening. It was as if our hearts began to soften for one another and we finally began to listen, communicate and love one another more. So I wanted to share with you some valuable lessons I've learned over the years which have helped my marriage to grow.
November 14, 2009, is the day my life changed forever. It started out like any other day where I had to get ready for my shift at work, but something felt different. I could not put my finger on it, but my spirit could sense there was a disturbance happening in the atmosphere. As I neared the last couple of hours before heading home, I received a strange phone call from my husband letting me know my mother had called him and that I needed to leave work immediately. Quickly, my heart sank because I felt the seriousness in his voice and wondered if it had something to do with my father even though my husband did not mention him over the phone. So I quietly pulled my manager aside and said, "I need to leave right now because something is wrong with my father." As I got into the car, I quickly found the drive home to be challenging as my mind began to race with all kinds of thoughts.
Many, if not most of us, have heard the phrase "Out of sight, out of mind." For this statement could not be more accurate to describe certain moments in my past and how I choose to deal with them. By not recalling any of those troubling memories, I am better able to deal with who I am in the present moment, but there are many other times where this is not the case. Sometimes I am bombarded with a voice that reminds me of my faults and bad decisions. It tells me that I am unworthy of God's grace and love because of who I was. It is even so bold as to defame my character and call out my sins one by one. So for the past ten years, I have lived with regret believing all that Satan told me and holding on to it thinking it would forever be my truth.