When I started this journey, I was newly healed from almost 47 years of mental and emotional abuse from various sources. Being healed of mental and emotional scars is quite a release of many things. But the most difficult part of it for me has been trust issues. I have had to learn to trust God more, lean on Him more, and I have also had to learn how to be bold in talking to Him. Because growing up in a home where one is yelled at a lot, I had transferred that to God as well, thinking that if I talked to Him about my innermost fears, concerns, and such, He would get mad at me and yell at me. I was truly misguided.
I was watching a video in a marriage apps class at church, and in the first session I learned something very important. God loves me perfectly, powerfully, and permanently. He will never turn His back on me. He will never get mad at me. He will never leave me (Hebrews 5). He has promised this. I knew this in my head but since, have learned it in my heart.
In my friendships, I had transferred my feelings to my friends. But they couldn't give me what I needed. In reality, they often made things worse. They didn't know that deep inside me, I was just longing for someone to trust. But people will let you down, just as I let them down.
In my marriage, I realized that I had also transferred my feelings to my husband, and was trusting him to give me what I needed...which he can't. Nor can I give him what he needs. I was using what I saw in my parents and grandparents to base my feelings for my husband on. Which was and is a very bad idea. I had no earthly idea that in order to have the kind of relationship with my husband that I was supposed to have, I needed to put my focus on Christ. For years, I struggled with this, fearing that if I did that then my husband would get mad at me. Little did I know that he was desiring the same thing. We can't depend solely on ourselves or our spouses (or others) to fill what only God can.
God's love in us produces the fruit of the Spirit, making us capable to love and receive love (Galatians 5:16-25). It is a must to stay connected to Him in prayer, fellowship, and His Word.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. ~Galatians 5:22
But something else that I have learned is that listening to the advice of others will only cause more problems in my marriage. For years I allowed the controlling, oppressive people in my life to dictate what I did and how I "felt." Wrong ideas create wrong mindsets. The very thing I sought was the very thing they ridiculed. But thank God that He healed me of these wrong mindsets and set me back on the path I'm supposed to be on!
Matthew 6 talks about wherever your treasure is there your heart will be also... Where was my treasure all these years? It was wadded up in the misconception that someone needed to serve ME. Here's a little secret for you; Trust God, NOT your feelings. Because feelings can be fickle, and the enemy will twist and turn them to manipulate you into believing that you NEED people, places, money, etc. in order to be happy. When all you really need is JESUS. Every time we turn to God He fills us with His supernatural love. When you do that you won't have to rely on the "advice" of others to figure out what it is you need out of life. You'll already have it. Perfectly, powerfully and permanently!
See more about Jimmy & Karen Evans' marriage ministry, or check out Jimmy's book, Lifelong Love Affair, at the links below: