8 Things that Restored Our Marriage-Part 7Jul 20, 2022
As we come to the last two principles of our “8 Things that Restored Our Marriage” series, I have to admit I have struggled with these last two posts. We have not posted in over a week, not because we didn’t have anything to say, but because there was so much we could say, I wanted to make sure we said the right things. So my prayer today is that Principle #7 is straight from God’s heart to yours and applies to your life no matter where you are in your marriage. We have touched on this principle before, but the application of this is crucial in moving from destruction to restoration.
When Trisha and I were first separated in October of 2005, I was the first to start counseling. I went to counseling 4 days a week for two weeks before Trisha and I started going together. Attending counseling was something that I had never done. I recommended counseling to others. We had Christian counselors that went to our church. I had pastor friends that told me of their great experience in counseling. My pride and my fear kept me from counseling. I thought that I was too strong for counseling; I could handle my junk on my own. Weak people go to counseling. At the same time, I was scared that if I went, the counselor would see right through me and I would be found out as the shallow poser that I truly was. (I told you I was messed up!) I resisted Christian counseling like the plague…until I was desperate to save my marriage.
At the end of my first week of counseling, I told the counselor to be honest with me. I said something like “Now that you have an idea of just how messed up I am, how much I have jacked up my life and marriage, I need to know, are we going to make it? Can you fix me? Can you fix my marriage?” He simply said that he didn’t know. He had no idea if what I had destroyed could be restored…but he did have hope that I could be restored. So, I said to him, “I'll do anything...just tell me what to do." He said to me “If I can recommend one thing for you to find healing it would be for you to buy and read “The Power of a Praying Husband.”
Let me just say that this wasn’t the first time I had heard of this book. I can remember several people emailing me about this book. One word came to mind when I thought of this book “CHEESY”! I read a summary of the book at one point and I thought only weak and incompetent guys would read this book. Turns out, that is exactly what I was…weak in character and incompetent as a husband and father. So I bought this book.
As Trisha and I talk to couples, often we are asked by them for one tip, one suggestion, one thing that they can do that will have immediate results on their marriage. This is that one thing…read this book. This book reveals the truth of Restoration Principle #7:
Principle #7: Our willingness to pray for our spouse is instrumental in God recreating who He wants us to be as husbands and wives.
There are two major reasons that I resisted not only reading this book but praying for my wife.
-Pride: The same pride that kept me from seeking help from a Christian counselor kept me from praying for my wife and marriage. If I prayed for my marriage, if I prayed to be a better husband, then I was admitting that I didn’t have it all together. I wasn’t the model husband, I struggled to be who God called me to be, I couldn’t provide the leadership and direction that my wife and kids were relying on me to provide.
-Priorities: I knew in my heart that if I prayed for Trisha and if I consistently prayed for my marriage that God would bring things to my mind that I needed to deal with. He would allow me to see changes that needed to be made and work that needed to be done to have a healthy and growing marriage…and I had a church to build. I didn’t have time to be sidetracked by issues that if I could ignore, would go away for fix themselves.
I began to read this book and God began to do something that I never expected. He began to change me. He began to allow me to see needs in Trisha that I never saw before. He gave me a heart for her desires that I never had before. He gave me an understanding of her world that I never comprehended. Through the prayers that were in this book, God unlocked a supernatural power in our marriage to bring about the changes in us that we knew were necessary, but was powerless to make happen.
I bought this book 3 ½ years ago. I have read it about 25 times. I still read it and pray through at least every other week. It is a vital part of my relationship with God and my wife. It gave me words to pray when I didn’t know how. It gave me verses of Scripture to read that applied specifically to something Trisha and I were going through.
God is passionate about your marriage. God longs to see your marriage thrive…even more than you do. When we submit to praying for our spouse, we acknowledge that we don’t have all the answers and we need supernatural help in becoming all that God has called us to be. It is through that process that God does something in us that we could never do for ourselves. I have come to realize that I can’t change my wife. As much as I want to, often times, I can’t change me. But as I pray and humble myself before God and submit to His desires for my marriage, He changes my wife and me in more complete ways than we could have ever done.
Trisha purchased "The Power of a Praying Wife" and consistently reads the prayers in that book for me. It has transformed who she is as a wife. These books were the single greatest resource for us finding hope, restoration and change that allowed us to move from destruction to restoration. I know it could do the same for you.