Married . . . but walking on different spiritual paths
I am unequally yoked.
When I met my husband we were at similar places spiritually – we had both grown up in church, though in different denominations. He was raised Catholic and I was raised in non-denominational and evangelical churches. While we both considered ourselves “Christians” and believed in God, we weren’t living like it. I went to church occasionally, but didn’t live like it the other 6.5 days of the week.
We got married and had babies. We went to church on an irregular basis. We had our kids baptized in a church where neither of us really felt like we belonged, but it was a middle ground between a Catholic church and evangelical church.
And then our marriage hit a very rough patch. I talked to a divorce attorney. I went to counselors. I read marriage advice books. I went to meetings. My heart was breaking for my kids and myself. I couldn’t find a way out.
And then I found Jesus.
Not the Jesus who I had “known” as a kid or the Jesus I wanted to hide from while in high school and college, but the Jesus who said this:
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 MSG
I started keeping company with Jesus. I’m learning how to live in His grace.
My husband is in a very different place spiritually. I don’t know for sure where he is. We don’t talk about it much. He comes to church with me. He prays with my kids occasionally. He questions God. A lot.
I understand why Paul said: “A wife is bound to her husband as long as she lives. If her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but only if he loves the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 7:39) I know the discomfort of walking through life with a partner who isn’t at the same place spiritually. Maybe not even on the same path.
But I also know my calling. I know why God has me here. I know that I have a mission field just as important as if God called me to Africa or China as a missionary. My missions field is in a house that I call home.
I am a missionary with three beautiful people watching my every stumble. Listening to what I say. They are seeing how I forgive. How I pray. Every day they see how I walk with Jesus.
Reading yesterday and today in 1 Corinthians there were several encouraging verses for my walk:
For the believing wife brings holiness to her marriage, and the believing husband brings holiness to his marriage. Otherwise, your children would not be holy, but now they are holy.
1 Corinthians 7:14 NLT http://bible.com/116/1co.7.14.NLT
Don’t you wives realize that your husbands might be saved because of you? And don’t you husbands realize that your wives might be saved because of you?
1 Corinthians 7:16 NLT http://bible.com/116/1co.7.16.NLT
Each of you should continue to live in whatever situation the Lord has placed you, and remain as you were when God first called you. This is my rule for all the churches.
1 Corinthians 7:17 NLT http://bible.com/116/1co.7.17.NLT
For any of you “unequally yoked” spouses out there – whether your spouse is another religion, is an unbeliever or just in a very different place in their walk with God . . . don’t give up. Keep praying and keep loving. And above all else, keep walking with Jesus.
P.S. If you are looking for a Bible reading plan to keep you focused on keeping daily company with Jesus, I highly recommend YouVersion app – found here. I am currently using the Skövde Pingst plan and love it!