Kate says . . .
We all have seen them. The marriages that suddenly seem “different” in a totally good way. When we get up the courage to ask them, we are enlightened to many battles on a vast battlefield. Maybe you realized there was a battlefield and perhaps you didn’t. Some people are fine with being transparent, while others hide the battle going on for their marriage.
When that couple is in a place where they are kneeling together looking back over the battlefield, they can see God helping them all the way. They see the hurt, sin, devastation and ashes. They can also see years later how that battlefield has healed and spring new life and beauty. No one walking by would know that years earlier a battle raged there-for many years.
That is us! That battlefield is ours. Ashes and brokenness that is now beautiful, vibrant and flourishing. I praise God each time I hear of another marriage story of restoration. Each story is unique, as unique as a fingerprint. Yet they all have some similarities:
1. An understanding that marriage IS worth fighting for
When you go through all that muck together, and you see the beauty God makes out of the ashes-it is as if a light has been turned on to why marriage is worth fighting for! When you’ve been through a battle and look back on the battlefield you are in awe of how God has been patient with your union.
2. Sharing “all” is huge! Intimacy!
For many years Brad and I “hid” the real and ugly of ourselves from each other. It was safer. If kept us from getting hurt. But it also kept us from having to deal with our sinful, selfish nature. Hiding the things we struggled with and refusing to work on ourselves, robbed us of true intimacy. Sharing ALL parts of yourself
3. A desire to see their spouse thrive as well as wanting to be a part of the journey with them
It’s not always about you! Your marriage was not just for your benefit. It was not only to have your spouse serve you. It was for you to love, respect and serve them as well. When a true drive and desire is there to help your spouse in the journey God has called them on, you find more peace and pleasure then reaching your own goals.
4. Praises on their lips to God for what their marriage has become
When your marriage has been dark, murky and hard to keep your head above water, you cannot help but share what God has done when that changes. Whether you share in a book, blog, speaking, at your local marriage ministry or share with friends and family. You share! God has made beauty out of your ashes and he you need to share the hope and healing that has transformed your marriage. It’s not about my marriage is better than yours is . . . it’s about Jesus and his grace and healing.
5. Seeks out help from others
Once you’ve experienced the beauty you want to make sure you are continually working on your marriage. One huge part of that is to have others around you that are marriage and sex positive, that will be willing to encourage you, pray with you and challenge you. These are your marriage champions. They don’t have perfect marriages either, but they know the value of their marriage and want it to grow. They desire Jesus in their life above everything else. When you have fought for your marriage, you find these people and you never let them go.
What would you add to this list?
Has your marriage been restored from ashes to beauty?
Please share your marriage story in the comments below.