Have you ever read a romance novel? The kind where the characters have faced some challenging life events, maybe fallen in and out of love, or have been burned by broken relationships; but ultimately they meet their soulmate, the one person they’re meant to be with forever who will make them happy like no one else can, and so they get married and ride off into the sunset? Those kinds of novels are a dime a dozen in Walmart, Barnes and Nobles, and yes, even Christian bookstores.
But they’re wrong. So wrong.
Your husband is not your soulmate.
She can’t really mean what she just typed can she? Yup. I can. I do. Your husband is not your soulmate. I mean that with all my heart, and I’ll tell you why.
Your husband is not responsible for making sure you’re happy all the time. That’s not his job, contrary to what romance novels and society want us to believe. His job is many things, but guaranteeing your eternal happiness? Nope, not that. You see, if he were in charge of making sure you were always happy, always content, always satisfied, well then, you would never be any of those things. How can a sinner who needs God’s saving grace as desperately as you do even begin to know just how to make someone happy forever when he can’t even save himself from the burdens of sin?
That’s not to say that he can’t make you happy at all, he can and he will. Many times. He will satisfy you, in many different ways. He will see that you’re content. But he will also infuriate you. Get on your last nerve. Challenge you, test you, hurt you, and yes possibly even break your heart.
Our culture has convinced us that our selfish need to be happy all the time is right. That it is normal. That it is what we should be able to expect from a marriage relationship. But this is simply not true. Unfortunately, people that fall for this lie are headed for a world of hurt, disappointment, and disillusionment.
We simply aren’t going to be happy all the time. God made sure He let us know that multiple times in the Bible. He assures us that we will face challenges and sadness. That death will knock the wind out of us. That people will hate and persecute us. And that He alone is strong enough to help us carry the weight of our troubles.
Did you catch that?
God alone is strong enough to help us carry our burdens. Not our friends, not our family members, not even our beloved husbands. Only our Heavenly Father can do it. All of our strength should come from Him! Our happiness, that comes from Him too. As do all the good things in our lives.
Ladies, if we burden our husbands with the things we should only be lifting up to God, if we make our men feel responsible for our happiness, our strength, our sense of well being; we will burn them out and leave them dry and empty.
Our Souls Long For God, Not Men
There is a longing in each and every one of our souls. One we are born with, one that never fades. We long to be Loved. Cherished. Accepted completely as we are. Treated like princesses. We long to find that one thing that will make our soul sing sweetly inside of us.
Society, T.V., Literature, Music, all of these things have convinced us that the thing that will make our souls sing their sweet songs is a man. That if we find that one perfect man, the one we were destined to spend the rest of our lives with, the one we will grow old with and have children and grandchildren with, we will have found our soulmate. This is simply not true. Men are attracted to us first, because of our bodies, our appearance, our image. They are creatures of sight. Drawn in by the visual appeal of our forms. After they fall in love with that, they fall in love with our hearts.
God falls in love with our hearts, and cares little about our appearances.
Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying. I truly believe that God gave Mitchell to me and me to him, as surely as I believe that He is the one who puts air in my lungs. I thank God every day for my husband because I love him more than I ever dreamed I could ever love another person. And he does make me happy, immeasurably so. I never want to imagine my life without him.
But I love God more. Before my husband and I married, God was all I had. And long after my husband passes, or I leave this earth, God will be all I have.
God is my soulmate.
He’s yours too. He’s the only one who can guarantee my happiness; not in the form of an absence of pain, struggles, sickness, or death, but in the simple pleasure I find being in relationship with Him. Being cherished by my Abba Father. Being loved, exactly as I am, no matter what I do, forever.
I know my husband loves me, I know he married me because he loved what he saw in me. But I also know that there are probably many things he wishes I would or wouldn’t do. Personality traits of mine that he finds challenging, and sometimes might even want to change. I know, without a doubt, that at times I drive him crazy. He may not love me despite all I do. There may someday, heaven forbid, be something I do that my husband simply cannot move past and forgive me for. Am I anticipating that? Absolutely not. Do I want that to happen? Never. But does that happen to marriages every day? Yes, it most certainly does.
Only God is able to wipe my slate clean and love me completely in spite of all of the many ways I screw up. If you don’t believe me, pray to God and ask him for a list of all the times you have messed up, sinned, hurt Him, fallen short….. Silence? That’s because God alone has the capacity for total forgiveness. He alone will never again remind us of our sins or keep a tally of our wrongdoings only to throw them our way when we inevitably do something that disappoints Him again.
Our husbands? Not so much. Sure, they can forgive, because God enables them to when His Holy Spirit comes to reside in them. They can accept us in spite of all of our shortcomings, and love us even though we may hurt them. But they are sinners. Living in a fallen world the same as us. Hindered by their own sin natures; they do keep score sometimes, they do remind us of past offenses, and sometimes, they simply cannot forget how we have hurt them in the past. They are human.
They are not our soulmates.
They may be the love of our lives, our temporary earthly lives. Our souls however? Those belong to God and God alone. I think Society, as well as every wife on earth or young woman about to be married, would do well to remember that.
A Prayer For Wives:
Heavenly Father, I know I am not alone in falling for the lies the world tells. I have placed the burden of my happiness on my husband many times, and for that I ask your forgiveness. I have given him my soul when it wasn’t His to have. It’s yours. Please help me in the future to remember to lay my burdens at your feet where they belong, before I add the weight of my worries to my husband’s shoulders.
God I thank you for my husband. This man I love more than I ever dreamed possible. This man who holds such a special place in my heart. I am truly honored that You chose me to be his wife, and he my husband. But I realize that You alone, hold my soul. You are my soulmate. The one who makes my soul sing sweet songs of love and adoration.
Help me to remember that Father, when I am tempted to place my husband in that role where he doesn’t belong.
Thank you for my marriage. For Mitchell. For this blessing. And thank you, thank you, thank you, for being the keeper of my soul.