Its Sunday morning and before I get ready for Church, I wanted to share something that has been on my mind.
I have been on a Christian walk for many years and to be honest I have not been 100% dedicated for most of that time. I have had so many struggles with things that don't represent my Christian walk, conversations I should have never been privy to and belief systems that are far from the traits that the Bible so clearly defines for us. Its sometimes shameful to admit, but being honest about it is the first step to rectifying it I guess.
For those who were reading my blog posts a few years ago, you should have seen my Love Dare posts. At the time Hubby and I were not in a good place and I was willing to try anything to get us back on track. Needless to say, my dedication to following the book fizzled out as fast as I started and I eventually gifted to book to someone I thought's marriage needed more help than mine did at the time. Hubby and I just ended up floating around for quite some time. We went to church, worked at conferences and just continued with life as it was.
What made matters worse is the fact that having four kids, a business and a full time job ended up taking away anytime for God. We were so consumed with everything else that God was someone we visited on Sunday at church and left Him there when we went home after.
For a few weeks at the end of 2015, we ended up skipping church all together, and for some reason it was really bothering me. Obviously not bothering me enough to go back. There are too many excuses. Church was too far, it takes too long to get the kids ready and once before we stopped going, we ended up at the service as everyone was already walking out of the building because service had already concluded for the day.
After years of trying to get back on track properly, hubby and I have finally started to get into a good routine, and I can't imagine why it took us this long to even get there. This time it had nothing to do with church and the people that we felt we needed to impress with our presence, it had to do with us and the personal relationship with Christ which we have long ignored.
Hubby and I have started to read Life Promises for Couples by New York Times bestselling relationship expert Dr. Gary Chapman and have been taking changing our lives one step at a time. One of the things that has changed is that we have been making the effort to pray daily. Not alone, but together. There is something very powerful about us spending the time in God's Presence together. Hubby seemed shocked the first time he heard me pray after so many years. I prayed for him, well because he is every part of who and what I am and other than my kids, he and his future are always on my mind. For some reason, even in this short time, we seem to be little closer and more understanding of each other which surprised me. But now I am starting to understand why it is so fundamental for couples to pray together.
When you get married, you become ONE. But what does ONE really mean? It seems this week that I have finally realised what that means. There are many times when I have spent time praying and reading my bible by myself, and although it is very fulfilling, there was always some element missing. When I started praying with hubby it all made sense. I want to be in the arms of God but with the person I share this life with as it no longer is my own. When we pray together, God sees us as one as was intended and as I cannot do anything without hubby, praying should have been up there with major life decisions. Its so interesting how spending this time with hubby helps make me aware of the fact that He is the head of this house and I need to respect that. I am known to be very opinionated and dominating, but being married has taught me that I am vital to our choices, yes, but that does not give me the right to make them on our behalf. Our prayer time has made me realise how much I have been making choices for us but then letting hubby take the credit for it. As with prayer, it is vital for my life but I should be doing it in the presence and even better, with the other half of me.
Realistically, I know this is not always possible with the demands of life, but I am starting to realise that I would not even have this life or my amazing Husband were it not for Christ in the first place. I will also be realistic in saying that getting my hopes up about this continuing long term is foolish, but I have learnt that hoping for it is like wishing everyday that it won't stop as apposed to having faith which is like knowing and making the deliberate effort to make sure it continues. Like everything in this life, consistency takes a conscious effort and in marriage most times we let a lot of things slide because it is so easy to say 'well he/she knows this about me'. However the minute we become complacent about how our marriages, is the moment we open the door to the destruction of our unions.
I must say that I am happy to married to man who does not judge my faults or mistakes. I have been a hypocrite and he walks along side me, I have had addiction struggles, and he stuck it out, we have been through it all, and he comes home and prays despite our pasts. All those things have finally brought us to this place here, our destiny. Our purpose realised in the room as we pray and talk to the Father together. I love him more now because we have started to acknowledge Christ in our lives first and with everything we have been through throughout the years that we have been together, there is a definite difference in the way we address each other and the time we spend before going to sleep.
Its been many years coming, and we probably would have been so much further if we started on this path sooner, but I am sure there was a reason for the time we had to do other things. It has showed me the large difference in the life before and the life now spent in the presence of the Lord with my husband, as it should be.