Updated: Nov 30, 2020
A few months ago, a Christian man sat in my office angry and sad because his wife just told him she was divorcing him. “And my kids don’t respect me either,” he added, implying that his wife had turned the kids against him. “Why is God letting her do this to me?”
I’m not sure why I end up with so many guys with bad marriages sitting in my office, decade after decade. I don’t even pretend to be a marriage counselor. But, there’s a common theme that runs through the majority of their stories, and it goes something like this. “Tell me more about your spiritual life,” I ask. Rarely do any of these men’s eyes brighten, then tell me they’re profoundly in love with God, or that they pray with their wives. Nor do they talk about their accountability group who are cheering each other on to be godly men.
“We were both raised Christians and we go to church. We’re Christians!” is about all I’ll usually get. When I ask about their last romantic getaway, or small gift they’ve surprised their wife with, or the last thing they did to show their wife how precious they are to them, they have to stop and think for a few very telling seconds.
I then often ask them to read 1 Corinthians 13 out loud to me. Then I’ll ask, “would your wife associate you with this kind of behavior? Do you think you try to love like this?” Most are honest enough to admit it’s been a long time since they intentionally tried to love their wife like that.
“To answer your question about why God is allowing this to happen to your marriage, Christians should not expect God’s favor, if they don’t use God’s methods!”
Early in my Christian life, I was told the Bible is God’s “owners manual.” Live by it and your life may not be perfect, but you will feel God’s pleasure and his goodness, the majority of the time.
“So here’s my advice for you; Don’t make your priority saving your marriage right now. Make your priority reading scripture, hanging out with men who love God and learning what God says about being a godly man. You may not be able to save your marriage, but being a godly man is the will of God for you.
It’s surprising how often when men hear that advice, and do it, even if their marriage ends, two things happen: They have less anger with their wives because they understand how their lack of spiritual leadership in the home, contributed to their divorce. Second, they feel far more optimistic about the future, because they’ve begun moving into and with the will of God.
“When Moses finished reciting all these words to all Israel, he said to them, “Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law. They are not just idle words for you—they are your life.” Deuteronomy 32:45-47
Obeying God’s commands unlocks God’s blessings.
How following Jesus works in real life.
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