– Cindy Wright – January 26, 2013
I’m thinking that some of the things I came across in my devotional readings today (from the book, “Women of Character”) might help many of you, whether you are a wife or a husband. I really saw truths in what I’ll be sharing from this devotional book (which unfortunately, is no longer being published). I pray the Holy Spirit will reveal them to you, as well… perhaps even more so.
The author(s) Gary Smalley and others, give a few thoughts concerning what is written in the Bible about Leah and the dilemma she faced in the rejection she experienced in her marriage, based on what we’re told in Genesis 29.
Gary Smalley, in the “when you think about it,” section gave the following insight to prayerfully consider:
“There is a fundamental problem with expecting fulfillment from people, places, and things. These are GIFTS of life, not the SOURCE of life. Anytime we expect the gifts of life to give us what only God can, we’re asking for our cups to be drained of energy and life itself.”
“When I focus on Jesus Christ as the Source of my life, an amazing thing happens. Because He loves me and actually possesses the wisdom, love, peace, and joy I’ve always wanted –He alone can fill my cup to overflowing! Because I’m no longer expecting people to fill my cup, I’m not hurt when they don’t respond in a particular way. Psalm 62 says that we are to wait and hope in God alone. He’s our rock, our salvation, our rear guard, and our hiding place.
“The more we place our expectations on another person, the more control we give them over our emotional and spiritual state. The freer we are of expectations from others —and the more we depend upon God alone —the more pure and honest our love for others will become.”
And then Cynthia Hicks adds the following thoughts to this issue, “The more confident we are in God’s loving gaze, the less driven we will be to win the loving gaze of others.”
I’ve found this also to be true. I’ve seen that sometimes we expect more of our spouse than we really should. I have a wonderful husband, but he IS human (just as I am) and I need to be careful not to expect more of him than I should. It’s my gaze towards God and His gaze towards me that should be my main focus.
In this same devotional section, there is something else to consider when you are feeling rejected. I want to remind you that this is written to wives, and yet the same is true for husbands. The author writes (and I agree):
“No, it’s not too much to ask of your husband [or wife] that your relationship become a priority to him [or her] –not always taking a back seat to work, hobbies, and whatever it is that keeps his [or her] mind so preoccupied. But it is too much to demand. Nothing in your scolding is likely to change his [or her] mind or to melt the hard shell on icy, detached habits.
“Make the brave decision that you will do what’s right even when your husband [or wife] does you wrong.”
Now, that doesn’t mean that you are to allow abuse and say nothing, or that you are to not say anything when you are disturbed about his or her detachment (unless God shows you otherwise). After all, why did your spouse marry you if he or she plans to live a single life? You are to be partners in marriage, so as a partner, you have a right to give voice to your concerns. But be careful not to become so obsessed by such behavior that you allow yourself to ALSO do what you shouldn’t.
Don’t allow yourself to believe the lie that because you hurt so badly, solutions to cheat and do that which you should not are acceptable.
Again, “rejected, yet faithful” –even if you suffer rejection and loneliness in your marriage, be faithful in YOUR actions and reactions.
I’ll close this blog with the wording that was presented in the beginning of the devotional thoughts on Leah, where the author wrote,
“If ever a marriage got off on the wrong foot, it was Jacob and Leah’s. The look in his eyes wasn’t the warm glow of newly wedded bliss, but the bitter glares of betrayal. Yet Leah learned that what God thinks of you is the most important reflection of who you are.”
To that, I say, “Amen!” Whether you are facing rejection from a spouse, relative, employer, children, friends, etc… may your utmost focus be upon whom you are in Christ, and to His focus upon you and love, forevermore.