Being new to this whole marriage thing, I feel like I have already faced so many trials with my husband. It’s been a little over a year and we have faced injury, income loss, in law drama, long distance, and yes, even petty arguments. When I put a years’ worth of hardships into one sentence, it sure seems like we don’t have a lot of good going on. The thing is, we have a lot of good going on! God used all of those trying times and situations above for good. Yes, all of it.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28.
The enemy may attack our marriage time and time again, doing his very best to rip it apart, but even those attacks God causes to work for our good. My husband and I have learned to love each other better and far more intentionally because of each new trial we have faced together. We’ve learned that unconditional love applies not just to each other, but to our families as well. Our communication has grown significantly because long distance forced us to talk, a lot. We’ve disagreed, dare I say even argued, but compromise and forgiveness have become a common practice where once there was selfishness and pride. We still have our mountains to climb as husband and wife, and I am not naive enough to believe we won’t lose our way here or there. But just as God builds us up in our faith, He can build us up in our marriage too.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4.
James wrote about the perseverance that trials create in our faith. He told us that God uses those trials to mature and complete us. God isn’t testing us so that we will go astray, in fact he would never tempt us to do wrong. (James 1:13-14). We aren’t tested in our marriages so that we will give up and call it quits. We are tested in our marriages so that they will persevere. We are strengthened through trials so that our marriage can grow. The next time you feel your marriage is being tested, search for the are God is maturing you in. Ask Him for guidance, He will surely answer that prayer. (James 1:5).
My prayer is to have a marriage, and a faith, that always perseveres through the many trials I know we will inevitably face. I need God to help me with that, I know I cannot do that on my own. I know I need more wisdom from Him and I can always find that in His Word. In fact, as I read through James 1 to write this I can already tell you the guidance He is giving me. God is telling me that I need to not just listen to Gods Word, but also do what it says. (James 1:22). And what it says is this:
“Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” James 1:19.
What perfect guidance as I ask God today what more I can do as a wife to ensure my marriage truly does grow and persevere. If you’re asking God the same question, start in His word, then do what it says.
*If you’re not sure where to start, James 1, Ephesians 5, and 1 Corinthians are a great place.