Marriage: Where did this mess come from?
When there’s a mess in your soul after a certain length of time you get used to it. The clutter becomes part of the landscape and you don’t realize the space it is taking up in your world.
Lies I told myself:
Because I yelled at my husband I am less than an ideal wife. Because I am frustrated with my baby I am less than a Godly mother. Because I don’t work I am less than a capable woman. Mind you, none of these were words people said to me, these were internal projections and any family or friends reading this book may be shocked to learn the depths of my self-destruction. Have you ever done this? Less than’d yourself?
How I avoided God’s nudges to talk:
As we went through different pieces of the retreat I slowly discovered there was a large amount of baggage surrounding this one day. In fact, the amount of baggage on my doorstep was taller than my head and unbearably heavy, blocking my way from moving forward. Instead of unpacking the crap and sorting through what to keep and get rid of, I allowed it to sit there and haunt me. Constantly reminding me of my past, all my shortcomings, and the list of less thans. A year and a half into our marriage I had a lengthy list of less than’s circling my mind.
I finally realized I needed Him:
And while I looked at all the baggage I realized I couldn’t sort through it on my own, I’d find bags wide open, laying on the front porch for everyone to see. My baggage was no longer a huge pile of boxes and suitcases. Now there were pieces of my heart and soul lying all over our front lawn for everyone to see. Because I had chosen not to unpack those bags, take the time to see what was inside and put pieces in their place, the contents ended up littering my front lawn.
Pivotal Moment in my Marriage:
In my journey the first step required some difficult self-evaluation and asking hard questions. The first thing I decided was I did not want to be in this marriage (before you gasp, hold on tight!). I concluded the day to day of this marriage was not pleasing to God. I was not the wife He called me to be and both of us were miserable, which means our daughter would be raised in a hostile home. Truths were unacceptable to me. After I concluded this marriage was not for me or Kurt, I immediately asked myself, do I want to be married to this man or someone else?
When you decide to stay, then the next questions can be just as difficult. How do I make this work? What do I need to change about myself to make a way for the marriage I envisioned on my wedding day? Let’s pause for a moment. Do you notice how the question is worded? How can I change? One of the unsettling truths we continually remind ourselves of is we have no ability to transform the people around us. The only change we can directly influence is the one within ourselves. It will be tempting to look outside yourself and point at the people around you, “Why aren’t they doing this or that? I’m doing all this work and they haven’t taken any steps to change.” We are human after all and our nature is to compete and compare with one another. There are so many times I have looked at my loving husband and thought, “I wish he would ______.” My encouragement to you sweet sister is to take hold of those thoughts and throw them into the garbage disposal. You are so much more than those thoughts. The Lord says our tongue holds life and death; The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit. Proverbs 18:21. The words in our mind hold the same power.
As you take the step to look within, you will receive fruit from your hard work. Choosing to change the status quo of your relationship takes bravery because you are altering the dynamics of your situation. When you focus on bringing more grace and love into the marriage you will be humbled and transformed. And this is where the real work begins. You’ve decided to start looking at the boxes on your stoop and see what lies inside, to free yourself (and your loved ones) from the demons stored inside.
Does this resonate with you?
If you’d like to hear more about my journey to healing from a Father’s Rejection, even the day that shattered my world forever, check out the story HERE. I believe when we share our story we are able to shine a light on the possibility of healing and have a chance to live more in our purpose.