Change. Most people don’t like it. Often times, change equates to loss, or change can mean overcoming a difficult situation. Rarely does a person see change as a good thing.
Yet, life is full of change, whether it’s just the changing seasons throughout the year or the changing seasons in one’s marriage. Some seasons are enjoyable and some are not. My favorite season happens to be Fall, but in order to experience Fall, I have to walk through the scorching 100+ degrees of Summer-a season I’d rather avoid.
Like the 4 seasons in a calendar year, marriages have seasons, too.
The first season of marriage is when it is brand new. Do you remember those days?
Hours of conversation.
Hanging out as friends.
Respecting him was simple.
Intimacy was something we longed for.
And grace was abundant.
But then the season changed when the newness of the relationship wore off, or a new season was ushered in.
Seasons of building a family.
Wow, now these seasons can really test a marriage. Sleepliness nights because of newborns and infants, not to mention the loss of one’s sanity when dealing with the constant training of toddlers who happen to love to throw tantrums. These years can be long and hard. When I walked through them it felt like they were never ending, and the last thing I felt like was a wife!
Then there are the seasons of long-term trials. Chronic illnesses, chronic financial storms, chronic relationship problems, chronic loneliness. In other words, we’re living in chronic trials.
As the seasons change in life, we need to adjust to the change. (Of course you and I wouldn’t be wearing our snow clothes in the summer’s blazing summer heat, now would we? Isn’t that just absurd.)
When my husband and I were living in the midst of my chronic illnesses, we had to discover our ‘new normal’. What I was physically capable of doing last year was not was I was capable of doing this year. It was the same premise when we were living in our financial storms. During our 16 years of marriage, we’ve lived 7 of those years struggling financially just to get by. Out of those 7 years, 3 of those years we’ve lived below the poverty level. Needless to say, I’ve had to learn to adapt!
We had to find our balance in these storms; storms we wished we never had, yet, they are storms that God has allowed in our lives.
Finding Our Balance in the Changing Seasons of Marriage
Stay the Course
When the storms come, don’t jump ship! Don’t think that the situation outside of the boat is better than the one inside. I know how difficult life can get. Fear sweeps in. Emotions run high. And the tears fall. Be determined to follow the Lord in spite of your trials. You might be enticed to throw in the towel, but I encourage you to stay focused on the Lord rather than your feelings. He’ll get you through this.
I love having security, whether it’s financial security or relational security but my security comes from the Lord, not my husband or my bank account. I need to run to the One who loves me more than my husband does, and that would be Jesus Christ. The Lord is the one who knows my every anxious thought and He knows my need, therefore, I need to place my trust in Him and lean more on Him than on my own understanding.
Submit your will to God’s plans for your life. This is always so difficult to do because I want my way because I think I know best, when in reality, I don’t, but Jesus does.
If you were on a boat in the midst of a raging storm, would you stay by your husband’s side or would you be at the opposite end of the boat? Most likely you’d stay by his side just like I’d stay by my husband’s side. God gave you your husband so you could weather the storms of life together. Oh, and don’t forget that Jesus is in the boat with you!
Study the Word, study your man, and study yourself. Stay in God’s Word so you can be encouraged. Learn your limitations and your husband’s and figure out what the two of you need in order to ride out the storms victoriously.
I no longer fight the changing seasons in our marriage, instead, I try to embrace it and here’s why:
I’m God’s daughter. Enough said. But I’ll expound more on this thought in case it’s not enough to encourage you in the midst of your difficulties. 🙂
I’ve learned that even though I can’t see God working in my life, He is. He’s changing me into a better version of me- one that is more committed to Him than what I was last week, last month, last year, etc. And the way He changes me is through trials; seasons of heartache, pain, loss, uncertainty, etc. I’m sure you’re well acquainted with many of these emotions too!
I’ll be teaching more on this subject in futher detail at a conference near you! Click here to find out all the details and learn how you can still have a thriving marriage no matter what season you’re living in.
So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. Hebrews 4:16
Live a poured out life for Christ,