I’ve heard the story more than once.
Man and woman fall in love. He loves Jesus. She loves Jesus. It seems meant to be. He cracks open a bit of his soul to share a dream. The dream is not exactly what she envisioned, but the rest of the story is so perfect she nods, smiles and pushes aside the aversion she feels to his heart call.
There is a wedding. It’s Pinterest perfect with lights hanging from trees bowing branches, mason jars full of peonies, and a beautiful bride and groom basking in the glow of forever love and commitment. It seems like a fairy tale.
Then he mentions the “dream” again. He wants to pack up life and move to that place. He wants to swing the door of life wide open and walk out into all the unknown. The place where she doesn’t want to go.
She hoped he had forgotten.
This isn’t my personal story. My dreams have mostly coincided with my husband. I won’t pretend to know the real tension or struggle this can cause in a marriage. What I do know is some of you know exactly what I’m talking about.
What happens when he feels called somewhere and you don’t?
There are a dozen angles we could analyze this conundrum from. I think the bottom line comes down to one question.
Do you trust the Holy Spirit at work in your husband’s life?
When my husband-to-be approached me about marriage- yes, we pretty much skipped the whole dating scene (another story for another time)- I was more than hesitant. After a month of sleepless nights I realized God was calling me to believe His Spirit at work in his life. Less than a year later we were married.
That choice, to believe the Holy Spirit rather than my fearful flesh, revolutionized how I approached each decision in our relationship. My first thought was no longer my fear. My first thought became, “God, how are you at work in our life together?”
That is a dangerous question to ask. Asking that question might take you to the Middle East or to a bad part of town or simply far away from your comfort zone.
As I write this it is as if I can feel the resistance across the miles and through the screen. Some of you are living on the field and you are disengaged. You didn’t want to come in the first place and you’re counting down days until furlough with a thick red sharpie marker.
Perhaps your husband knows this. Maybe you’ve been all kinds of obvious about your dislike of your so called “calling”. It might be your husband is oblivious, too busy to notice from the middle of ministry and mayhem that can be a life on the field. Seeds of bitterness are burrowing into hard soil and bearing rotten fruit. It’s easy to undermine his leadership and be passive aggressive when something deeper is churning in the murky waters of your soul.
This is the part where we get down to some good old-fashioned confession.
If you aren’t on board with the mission you need to tell him.
The health of your marriage is paramount. Your ministry on the field is only as strong as your marriage is behind closed doors. It might mean coming off of the field to heal and get on the same page or it might mean your heart receiving a massive purging in order for you to stay and serve together.
What I believe more than anything is if God has united you with your husband and you have committed your marriage to Him, He can and will change your heart.
Do you believe that? Do you want that?
It’s ok to say honestly you don’t. God can change a hard heart, he can give you a heart of flesh for a heart of stone. If God can strike a man blind on the Damascus road and rearrange his whole life then I know He can change your feelings about the who’s, where’s and when’s of your life and calling.
But sister, He longs for you to humble yourself and allow Him to change your heart. The fertile, soft soil of your heart is where God can grow your soul to desire the same things as your husband. Just as He has made you One in marriage He rejoices to make you One in mind and calling too.