As an adult, I remember watching romantic movies and wondering why romance is so difficult. Just go to the person, apologize, and put on your makeup. Live happily after you were clearly destined to live. Hey, was I naive? I’ve been married for almost 5 years and I can honestly say that marriage is the hardest thing in the world. What started out as fun and romantic can turn into quarrels and disturbances.
No one is immune from the difficulties of marriage. They all have their ups and downs. Even in seasons when you don’t know if it will work out. Divorce is a bad word for many people, but the thought of it crosses your mind in the darkest moments.
I imagined myself to be a patient, caring, and loving wife. That I would be the kind of spouse that would make marriage easier. Again, I was very naive. Because what I didn’t see in those movies was real life, my own sinful nature. To be honest, I was not the wife I imagined. I am selfish, proud, and have reacted worse than I would like to admit. I have been sabotaging and backing down, outbursts of anger, and unkindness.
If we’re not diligent, those mistakes can snowball into a sterile marriage. Two people living in a house, like ships coming and going at night, invisible even when they are close.
8 Bible Truths About Unhappy Marriages
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably been there, been there, or are preparing for the next few days. Days when you can’t love your spouse. The days when I don’t even feel like talking about it, let alone forgiving. Moments when you feel so hurt or angry that checking out seems like an option. Days when you are worried about whether your married life will go well.
For such days, there are eight thoughts that I want you to remember. 8 truths I want you to carry with you in dark days.
1. God Can Heal No Matter How Reconciliation Seems Impossible
Hurt and distance may seem too far to heal, but neither is impossible for God to heal. In fact, that is what God does best: salvation. When you surrender to God’s work and pray for His healing, God can begin to work even in the most dire circumstances. If God can conquer death, He did, and He can bring that same victory to your marriage.
With thanksgiving, go to the Lord daily in prayer and supplication and invite Him into the relationship. Even if all seems lost, there is still hope in God’s hands.
“And Jesus said to him, ‘If you can’!” All things are possible for those who believe. ” Mark 9:23
2. Pray for your spouse and marriage
Prayer is often lost in the busyness, but it is one of the most important things you can do. When you pray something happens.
Bring your marriage to the Lord every day because it is hard to see victory without prayer. Please pray for healing and reconciliation. Encourage God to be more patient and kind. Ask God to work in your spouse’s heart.
The devotionals I highly recommend are The Power of Praying Wives and The Power of Praying Husbands by Stormy Omartian.
“In my agony I called upon the Lord. I cried out to my God for help. The Lord heard my voice from the temple. It reached my ears.” Psalm 18:6
3. Love is an action, not an emotion
There will be days when you don’t feel loved or even like your spouse. But love is an action, not an emotion. It’s something that everyone is expected to have, but it’s especially true for spouses.
The truth is that every marriage has its toughest days than others. And most people will go through days when love seems far away. But any marriage that has stood the test of time and the test of time is a marriage that fought for love, even if love had no feelings. Action began, love lasted.
Even if you don’t want to show your spouse love, do it anyway. That might help turn the tide.
“Love is patient and kind. Love will endure all things, believe all things, hope all things, endure all things. Love will never end.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
4. Accept forgiveness
Forgiveness is important in any relationship. We all make careless words and make selfish decisions that hurt those we love most. And your spouse has or may do so to you as well. If something like this happened, accept forgiveness.
In tough seasons like these, we want to withhold forgiveness until our spouses have fixed our wounds. And over time, our own lack of forgiveness builds a solid wall around both hearts. One of the best ways to soften your heart is to forgive. however often.
Jesus said: Matthew 18 Forgiveness is essentially limitless. Peter asked if forgiving seven times was enough, but Jesus said he would forgive seventy-seven times. Remember to forgive your spouse when he or she hurts you. Forgive them even if they didn’t ask for it. And do it often.
“If any of you are dissatisfied with someone, be patient with one another, and forgive one another. is overlaid with love, which binds it all together in perfect unity.” Colossians 3:13-14
5. Show empathy
Empathy helps a lot in relationships. If I’m being 100 percent honest with you, this might be difficult for me. I’m an Enneagram 8, and if you know anything about 8s, vulnerabilities are difficult and we want to solve them. So it works for me to let my guard down and empathize. I’m not great at it, but I strive to grow in this area because I understand how valuable it is in all relationships, not just marriage.
Jesus always showed great empathy. Jesus saw the people as sheep without a shepherd, so he went to them.Matthew chapter 9). When Jesus saw the sick and wounded, he healed them all (Matthew chapter 8). When Jesus saw a Samaritan woman whom the Jews shun, he went to her.John 4).
When times get tough, remember that it hurts not only you, but your spouse as well. Pain draws us in, but you are most like Jesus when you surge with love. When you love what you can’t love
“Finally, I ask all of you to be of one heart, to be compassionate, to be brotherly, to be kind and to be humble.” 1 Peter 3:8
6. Remember your vows
This is basic but powerful.
As time goes on, what we shared at the beginning fades with the hardships and pain that life brings. You forget how much fun you had when you were together. Great memories you made. We forget even the vows we once made to each other.
Get out the vows you wrote to your spouse or watch a wedding video. And remember the promises you made to each other. Renew your commitment to marriage by remembering your fierce loyalty to each other in good times and bad.
You may want to consider reading each other’s vows again.
“Therefore let a man leave his father and mother, and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” Therefore, they are no longer two, but one. Therefore, man must not separate what God has united. “ Mark 10:7-9
7. Willing to work hard
A long-lasting marriage is never easy. In fact, if you ask most people who are still married through their golden years, they’ll probably tell you that there were days when they weren’t sure if their marriage would be successful.
If you don’t have the will to do the hard work, you won’t make it to the end. Fight your emotions and do the right thing. Forgiveness, patience, showing empathy. We must fight the spiritual battles over marriage with prayer and the Word of God.
“Therefore, do not abandon this confident trust in the Lord, and do not forget the wonderful rewards that it will bring. If you do, you will receive all that he has promised.” Hebrews 10:35-36
8. Seasons Don’t Last Forever
Everything has a season–that’s what Solomon said at the end of his life. After abandoning his master and taking his first marriage, he reflected on the futility of chasing his desires.
During the darkest days of your marriage, you might imagine living apart from your spouse. But what Solomon essentially said is that the grass on the other side isn’t green. Find purpose for the season and understand that this time will not last forever.
There are different seasons in life and marriage. There will be dark days, but there will also be beautiful days. If you are willing to tackle the hard work that your marriage requires, you will be able to get through this difficult time. And on the other side of that harsh season is love stronger than before.
“Under Heaven, all things have their seasons, and every purpose has its time.” Ecclesiastes 3:1
Other Bibles on Marriage
Proverbs 19:14 ESV- Home and wealth are inherited from the father, but a wise wife is given by the Lord.
1 Peter 3:7 ESV- Husbands, likewise, should lead a life of understanding with their wives and show respect for women as weak vessels. For they are heirs with you of the grace of life. That way, your prayers can be unhindered.
Proverbs 18:22 ESV- He who finds a wife can find good things and win favor with the Lord.
Genesis 2:24 ESV- Therefore a man will leave his father and mother, and hold his wife tight, and they will become one flesh.
Ephesians 5:22-33 ESV- Wives, obey your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, just as Christ is the head of the church, its body, and himself the savior of the church. Now, as the church submits to Christ, so the wife should submit to her husband in everything. Husbands, love your wives. To cleanse and sanctify the Church by the washing of the waters of Her Word, as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself for Her.
1 Peter 4:8 ESV- Above all, keep loving each other seriously because love covers many sins.
Proverbs 31:10 ESV- Can you find a good wife? She is far more precious than jewels.
Psalm 85:10 ESV- Unwavering love and sincerity meet. Justice and peace kiss.
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Brittany Lust I am passionate about seeing people affected by writing and speaking through the power of God’s word and God’s bountiful grace. She is the founder of Truth and Grace Ministries, Truth x Grace Women, and the author of five books. Brittany lives with her husband Ryan and her son Roman in Castle Rock, Colorado.Learn more about www.brittanyrust.com.