Speak Without Words

This week I attended a woman’s Bible study at my church. It wasn’t my regular study group. I was surrounded by new faces. Each one took their turn sharing their prayer request and slowly they made their way to the young lady sitting beside me. She was an adorable mother of two, all smiles and sweetness. But, the moment she opened her mouth her voice cracked and her eyes misted over. “Could you please pray for my marriage?” She asked. “With our newest little one, I am finding no time for my husband. And quite frankly, I don’t want any time with him. By the time I go to bed, I am exhausted. Could you please pray for me?”

After our meeting, I made my way over to her. As the mother of four, I knew exactly what she was talking about.

When I went home that afternoon, I emailed this young mom and encouraged her to attend a marriage study that my husband and I will soon be hosting in our home. What I thought were originally tears from an exhausted mother, ended up being much more…

“I would love with all my heart to do this study with my husband and maybe someday we can. But you see, one thing I didn’t tell you today is that he’s not (yet) saved.”

Not the answer I’d expected. My heart hurt for her. But, I was grateful she typed the word “yet”. She still had faith. She was believing God for a miracle. I knew how she felt. I was once the only Christian in my marriage. Thankfully, it was a season of less than a year. I know of many who suffer much longer in a relationship where the Lord dwells in only one spouse. I shared with my new friend, the words of encouragement given to me when I was walking the same road. The verse I shared with her was this…

In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands. Then, even if some refuse to obey the Good News, your godly lives will speak to them without any words. They will be won over by observing your pure and reverent lives. –1Peter 3:1-2 NLT

I went on to encourage her more in the email:

“And if I can share just one more thing with you…don’t talk to your husband about Jesus, show him Jesus. Remember, Jesus loved and served the undeserving. On those days you want to scream or cry, or throw in the towel, or throw the towel at your husband (something I’d want to do), ask Him to give you the strength to get through one more minute, one more hour, one more day. He will. He is the one true and living God, and He lives and dwells inside of you. When you call on Him for help, stand back, because girlfriend, He will help.”

Friends, if you feel like you are standing on solid ground alone, reach out for Him. He is there. And remember, He desires to live inside your husband more than you will ever know. Release your worries, anger, frustrations, disbelief, and impatience to the One who can bear it. Then show your husband the merciful, grace-filled love of Jesus Christ.

Lord, I pray for each woman hurting today without a spouse to share in the saving grace of your son Jesus Christ. I ask that you would dry their tears and fill their hearts to overflowing. Remind them of the days when they too walked alone and ignorant of your love. Place Godly people in the path of their loved one so that they will feel their burden to guide their loved ones into the Kingdom lightened. Remind them Holy Spirit, that only you can turn hearts toward Christ. Remind them it is your work alone, and that you are working even now as they read these words.

One Response to Speak Without Words
  1. Tiffiny
    January 30, 2010 | 2:11 pm

    I struggle with this post.

    My husband and I are currently going through a separation/divorce. 🙁 Unlike the woman in this story, we are both saved (although our separation doesn’t show it). He struggles with alcohol and drug addictions. In his defense it’s not a daily thing. However, I’ve noticed that when someone is an addict, it affects all parts of their life. He’s been struggling with this for 20 plus years. In the short time I’ve known him, I thought he was getting better. Then I realized that people who use and/or drink for so many years, their attitudes are different from other people. My husband is a very paranoid person. But, in all of this, I wonder….How long do I hang on? We are told to forgive every time we are asked for forgiveness. But…How many chances to I give a man who goes back to the drink/drugs? It effects my life too. It effects my kids’ life. Is it really that simple for me to just live a “pure and reverent life” to help my husband? I guess all I’m really saying is that I feel like a failure/sinner for getting divorced. I can do what I can, but I can’t force my husband to get better. I feel guilty, you know?

    I guess I still have some processing to do. This is a fairly new thing for us.

    Thanks for letting me rant. 🙂