Love Your Wife As Christ Loves The Church

28 Mar

My wife is out of state for the next 12 weeks to help take care of  her father who is undergoing treatment for prostate cancer. In the six years that we have been married this is the longest we have been apart. My wife goes south every summer to visit her family and spends a couple of weeks there, but never 2 1/2 months. For me this has been a time of testing and a very powerful experience where God is doing some awesome things. I have had very painful losses in my life; first my parents, countless relatives, and then a spouse. There was also the loss of a relationship that meant the world to me, the pain of unrequited love.

Many of us do not realize how we take the most important people in our lives for granted. I had gotten so stuck in the past and reeling over all these losses in my life that for years I didn’t think I could truly love another person again. I was waiting for God to mend my broken heart, but with every loss it broke again and complete healing never seemed to come.. Then about 7 years ago I met a girl who is now my wife. We met online of all places. I don’t recommend it to anyone but I believe God can bring people together even through a computer. My wife had an extremely difficult childhood. She was physically abused by her alcoholic father. When she was a young teenager she was the victim of a horrific crime. One day some Mormon elders came to her door and talked her into visiting their church. She was 17, depressed and lonely, looking for a place to belong and Mormons offered her such a place. Although she was raised Baptist in the Bible Belt South and knew better, she became a Mormon and sat in their pew for 10 years. By the time that I had met her she was empty and still searching for something, but didn’t know what it was. At the very same time that I was telling her about Jesus, she had been emailing with a pastor who told her she needed to be born-again. Shortly thereafter she attended a Christian Bible study and got saved. We were married a year later. Both of us had brought a lot of emotional baggage with us into the marriage. All the pain from our past. Because of this the first few years were extremely difficult. We both occasionally wondered if our marriage would end in divorce. However, coming from Christian backgrounds we had taken our marriage vows seriously and we knew God hates divorce. My problem was anger. I was always yelling. I couldn’t love my wife the way she deserved to be loved. She in turn was wounded and would place blame on me every time something went wrong. After 6 years of this, God got a hold of me and showed me that a man is to love his wife the way Christ loves the church. I could not do this, nor can any man, without God’s help. I was a nominal Christian, had stopped going to church and wasn’t tithing regularly. I knew I wasn’t living rightly and my walk with God often suffered. My wife hadn’t completely left Mormonism behind.  She still had Mormon literature in our home. We were trying to have daily devotions but after a while we got lazy and the next thing we knew weeks had gone by without our studying the Bible together. What my wife was craving was a husband who lived a Godly life in front of her. She needed for me to be the spiritual head of our home. Something her father had failed to do. For the most part we were miserable and this was because we were outside the will of God.

 

For the past two weeks with my wife down South, I have been spending a lot of quiet time with God and the Bible. It has been a much needed retreat. God has been doing some amazing things in my life. I am now tithing and already I’m seeing the fruits of that obedience. I have been praying for a long time that Jesus will put His love in my heart so that I can give it to my wife. Last night, she and I were instant messaging each other and I told her that I missed seeing her face, so she turned on the web cam. Her smile was so sweet and innocent like a child’s that instantly I felt a wave of love for her that I had never known before. I was filled with so much pain and remorse for all the times that I had screamed at her and said horrible words. All of a sudden I was begging for her forgiveness and we talked about trying to be better spouses and how we will work on it when she returns home in June. This was a beautifully catharsis experience for me. Without any warning I began to bawl like a baby. I wept for nearly 30 minutes. God has shown me that when we are faithful and obedient he will do wonderful things in our lives.

 

Just before my wife and I got married, I told her that I had already forgiven her for everything that she will ever do to me now and in the future. Every time she apologizes to me, I remind her of this. I believe it is one of the greatest gifts we can give to our spouse. I challenge Christian husbands to pass on this gift.

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4 Responses to “Love Your Wife As Christ Loves The Church”

  1. Wayne March 28, 2012 at 8:54 pm #

    Interesting journey.

    Wayne

  2. New View From Here March 29, 2012 at 3:52 am #

    Can think of nothing more powerful than truly loving your wife as Christ loves the church, and the humble willingness to share the story of how you’ve learned the importance of doing so. My journey has recently led me to some of the same realizations….come read up a bit when you get a chance!

    Nice post!

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