Equally yoked?

Living “unequally yoked” with a non-believer causes great difficulty in any marriage. Being “equally yoked” with a spouse does not always guarantee harmony though.

An issue Rick and I see with couples frequently, involves the spouse who professes to be a Christian, goes to church, and appears to be a saint in the eyes of other church members. At home though, they are not walking the walk. They often struggle with drugs, alcohol, addictions, and abuse issues, and may not treat their spouse and family as God intended.

Dealing with a spouse who doesn’t apply the truth but acts as though they’ve mastered it can be extremely frustrating and painful.

This takes me back, again, to the old problem of SELF. That’s what it’s all about. The Christian spouse not living the Christian life at home is usually absorbed in it. They have not yet allowed God to take control and free them from the bondage of the flesh (SELF) that keeps them from a true relationship with God and their spouse.

Unfortunately, it often takes some sort of crisis for people to make changes in their lives. You may have to go through a fiery experience in order for your spouse to see the truth, to get out of their SELF.

So what do you do if I’ve described your spouse? You pray. You turn it over to God. You hold on for the rollercoaster ride and fight your way through the fire, believing God will make a way.

Find another couple in your church, maybe an older couple, to act as mentors to you and your spouse. Often times we are so entrenched in a behavior that we can’t see it. It may take another Christian to point out areas of our life that need help. We very rarely listen to our spouses “constructive criticism” but may openly welcome words of wisdom from a pastor or Christian we respect.

A marriage class or seminar will usually deal with areas of your marriage that need work. Sign up for one with your spouse. Couples in our classes seem to find relief in realizing they are not alone; every couple goes through similar problems. There is great comfort in surrounding yourself with others who share the same struggles. (As long as it's in a positive, Christian environment.)

2 Corinthians 1:3-4, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God."

I believe with all my heart that God will richly bless us for enduring hardships we face in our marriages. He certainly did that for me! Stay the course, don't jump out of the fire! Allow God to refine your marriage in His time, even when your spouse seems to be walking the other way.

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