At about year 10 of my marriage, it all fell apart. It wasn’t just that year but all the unstable years before that finally fell under the pressure of trying to survive. I lived in a state of anger and resentment toward David during the hard years. I was angry that he was living the big league life of McCormick and Schmidt’s with $100 bottles of wine while I ate leftover chicken nuggets from the baby’s high chair. He flew on charters and dressed in suits while I barely had time to shower each day. I became more and more angry and defiant. I wanted nothing but to be mad and uncooperative.

“Love must be sincere, hate what is evil, cling to what is good,” Romans 12:9

When I was at my lowest point I began to see a marriage counselor, by myself. I wanted her to take my side of the hurt and pain. She was heartfelt but did not join my pity party. She asked many questions that reminded me of the most peace and joy filled time of my life when I was attending church. I reluctantly joined a bible study with a little league mom and began to pursue God with lots of questions. It was a process, but one that gave me more peace and joy than I had experienced in years.

Once I surrendered to Christ and begged Him to take over every aspect of my life, I began to see what unconditional love lookedIsaiah 64 8

like. The unconditional acceptance God offers was so freeing and exciting. My husband saw the change in me. I was listening with a loving heart. I loved as Christ loved. My life was drastically different. I begged my husband for forgiveness for my anger and defiance. He forgave me and began coming to church with our boys and me. The healing of our marriage began. As we built our lives around our submission to Christ we began to work on our marriage in a new way, a Christ-centered way. We knew we had to look at love differently. We had to look at it in relation to the love of Christ.
There are days we find that are really tough to like each other but we cling to the love and forgiveness Christ has shown us and we hate what is evil and the evil that we can do to one another. We love sincerely, according to His abilities, not ours. We do not always succeed but we work hard to choose love.

1Peter 4 8Choosing to love one another with God at the center of our marriage opened our hearts and minds to be more Christ-like. In the toughest of times, we re-center our focus on Him, we choose to love with sincerity, hate the evil that could bubble up in our own ability and cling to what is good and healthy for our marriage, the love of Jesus.