Monday, September 30, 2013
When Your Spouse Walks Out - 5 Things You Can Do
I have heard it over and over and over.
"He's asking for a divorce."
"She just left...I think there is someone else."
"There's just no love in this marriage. I'm not sure what I'm gonna do."
If you haven't run across someone who is having marital problems, then you are living in some kind of heavenly bubble, and my advice to you is stay there! It's a happy place!
Unfortunately, reality is somewhat different. The enemy knows that if he can destroy marriages, then he can bring down the whole family unit within society. One building block at a time, he chips away until all that is left standing is an empty shell symbolizing two people who are joined together by a piece of paper and exchange of rings. It doesn't happen overnight. Just as the building of marriage is a daily decision and series of positive choices, the destruction of marriage is a daily decision and poor choices.
So what are we to do if our spouse walks out? It doesn't always have to be a physical movement. They can check out of the marriage mentally and emotionally years before they ever bodily walk out the door.
I have comprised a list of five things you can do. I'm not promising these five things will restore your marriage. I'm not saying that your spouse will return, but what I am saying is that by following these five simple rules, God will honor your prayers and will be a guide to you through your times of trouble, and that is huge. For the Word tells us that "If God is for us, who can be against us?!"
1. Pray and Seek God's Direction. This would be a good time to ask God what to do. If you haven't had a relationship with Him up until now, then He is more than ready to welcome you in. It's a matter of surrendering our own stubborn will to His, believing that His Son, Jesus, died on the cross for your sins, taking the punishment that you (and I) deserved upon Himself, and dying then raising to life on the third day.
If you've been walking with God all along, then continue to seek His help and guidance. Our heavenly Father offers so much peace in the midst of our storms, but also direction and truth. When the enemy has his hand on our marriage, he will also be planting lies within your thought life. God can protect us from those deceiving thoughts through time spent with Him and through the truth of His Word.
2. Stand Up and Fight. Too many of us give up way too easily. If you love your spouse, then fight for it. No matter how hopeless it looks, it is not over until your husband or wife has divorced you and remarried someone else.
Remember back to what drew you to that person in the first place. What were the qualities you loved about them? Those are the things that will keep you in the game. If you loved them then, your love has not died, but been covered up by the junk you've been dealing with. You made a commitment before God and man to love, honor, and cherish this marriage until death do you part. So why do we give up so easily? Because it's easier to throw in the towel and admit defeat than to fight for what you want. FIGHT! Get in the game. Be proactive at winning back your spouse's heart. It will be hard work. It will cost you something. It will be uncomfortable, but when it is all said and done, you can honestly say, "I did everything I could to save this marriage."
3. Watch Your Words and Actions Carefully. This means even when it's at its ugliest, watch your tongue and protect your place. Don't say mean things in retaliation. Don't nag, whine, cry or belittle. Don't down talk your spouse to another....ever. And, resist placing yourself in a position that might render you vulnerable. Don't talk with the opposite sex about your marital problems (unless it's a trusted clergy or counselor in a safe environment) for this can lead into a whole new set of issues.
4. Find Ways to Please and Honor Your Spouse. You may not "feel" like it. You may have been hurt or kicked to the curb, but remember the vows you took in the beginning. The person you love is still there, but the enemy has put his slimy grips on his or her thoughts and actions. Find ways to show love towards your spouse. Try an experiment. For 30 days, do a kind thing for your spouse each day. Leave a love note. Buy flowers. Cook a great meal. Gas up his or her car without being asked. Get tickets to a game. After the 30 days, see if he or she has taken notice. I think you might be surprised. If nothing else, it has gotten the focus off yourself and onto others.
5. Take Care of Yourself. Though God wants us to be "others" focused, He also wants us to take care of ourselves. Get enough rest. Eat the right foods. Find time to exercise and maybe even tone up or drop those extra few pounds. Your body is the temple of the Lord...it was bought with a price. Take care of it. When you are feeling good about yourself, your spiritual well-being, your health, your appearance, then that radiates to others. Whether your spouse admits it or not, they will take notice. More importantly, however, you will gain confidence and have a healthy respect for the person God has made you to be.
My prayer for you today, wherever you are at in your walk with God and in your marriage, I pray that He will show you His infinite love and grace. God can heal your marriage, but more importantly, He can make you a better you!