This chapter in the Love Dare opens with stating how important it is to accept Jesus, not just to gain right standing with God, but as the driving force in all our relationships.  “You may have realized that nothing in your toolbox of talents and resources could repair the damage that sin leaves, and that Jesus is the only one that can supply what you have been missing”.  I admit That I need God every single day. He alone can satisfy when all else fails.

My mindset going into the reading was such (if you have been following this post you already know that I am separated from my wife), that even though I recognized as truth that my focus and priority should be on God. I felt like the authors were saying, “things are not going to change in your marriage, so put your focus on your relationship with God”.  Of course they are not saying there will be no change, and it is true, God will never disappoint.

Couples disappoint each other all the time.  We place unrealistic expectations on each other, forgetting that we are after all only human.  We make mistakes that have painful consequences.  God on the other hand knows everything we have done.   Every disappointment or wrong we inflict on our loved ones is an affront to God also.

He knows all I’ve done, all I’ll ever do and He promises that if I ask forgiveness, He is faithful and just to forgive my sins.  Furthermore, He promises to put the sins out of mind, His mind, to remember them no more, as far as east is from west!  Can you say the same, I can’t, but how much better would our relationships be if we could do this.

If we continue to hold our view of our mate through the lens of hurts and disappointments, there is no hope for healing or for building on the good and leaving the ugly behind.  I think that is why it is so important to see ourselves as God sees us.  He died for my sins, my wife’s sins, your sins.   We are washed clean and have right standing with Him, if we accept this forgiveness.   I will never stop disappointing, nor will anyone else.  Will we be able to forgive and celebrate what God has given us or will we hold on to our hurts and undo all we have had together?

When God made Adam he saw that Adam was lonely.  Adam walked with God in paradise, the splendor of an earth that we only get a glimpse of, yet he was lonely.  God said, “It is not good for man to be alone”, so he made woman to complete what we need.  Adam chose to follow Eve rather than keeping his focus on God, we know what happened.  I wonder if Adam had kept his focus on God, would Eve’s being deceived by Satan been forgiven?

I know the pain I feel will go away, I’ve grieved loss before.  I know that whatever happens in my marriage, God is with me.  I know should this marriage end, life will go on.  I know that by admitting my weakness and need for God, that He gives me His strength.  I just need to relax in these facts.  I am so glad that God does not see me as others see me and how I have viewed my own flaws.  He sees a work in progress, I need to cooperate with His work.

I see that marriage is a gift.  It is a compliment to my life, not its completion.  It is not up to my wife or anyone else to keep me happy, satisfied or entertained.  My place in a marriage first and foremost is to love my wife with the love that God would give her through me.  The lesson today was, no matter where your spouse is in loving you or if they want what you have to give, the main thing is God loves us, God accepts us and He knows it is not good for us to be alone.  I am open and ready to receive what God has in store for me, I am looking forward to it!