Friday, October 17, 2008

The change that results from whole hearted devotion to Christ

The same goes for you wives: Be good wives to your husbands, responsive to their needs. There are husbands who, indifferent as they are to any words about God, will be captivated by your life of holy beauty. What matters is not your outer appearance—the styling of your hair, the jewelry you wear, the cut of your clothes—but your inner disposition. 1 Peter 3:1-4 MSG

It has been two years now since Al committed his life to Christ, and a good time to reflect on that, from my point of view. People ask me, how has Al changed? Now would be a good time to share how life is different now that he has crossed the line of faith.

First, I now urge, even more strongly, women who are yet unmarried to only commit to a man who is whole-heartedly devoted to Christ. I am amazed at the difference this has made in our life together.

I did not have to instruct or encourage Al to change. It happened by the exclusive and mighty power of the Spirit of Christ. He reads his Bible daily, listens to praise music, reads Christian books---his current interest is in the marriage relationship. He desires to be a godly husband and is pursuing that goal in a passionate way.

He prays with me. He cries with me. He gives me Godly counsel, he is much more patient to hear about my issues and shares his with me. He pursues me, makes sure we have enough quality time together. He leaves me notes, he reads to me, he calls me at work, he has given me gifts unlike before this time. He has become my best friend. He has become an even sweeter lover.

He will accept my rebuke of his sins (of course, I need to be gentle and respectful), and he thoughtfully considers my words. Even if sometimes emotions are too hot for an immediate positive response, he always comes back to me later. He says he’s SORRY and admits when he is wrong.

Two years later, I still am amazed at this blessing from God. I am awed by the power of the Spirit to transform and this has given me hope to pray for the most difficult issues.

I would also like to share, from my current perspective, what to do if you are still waiting for this transformation to happen in your husband. If I would give a word of advice, it would be this…

While you wait, pursue a holy life, devoted to Jesus.

It is not easy to do this as a woman married to a man who is uncommitted to God. But doing this will accomplish two things.

First, we can not impart what we do not have. As we are changed by the power of the Spirit, that change effects others, especially those in our household. The beauty of inner holiness is very attractive.

Second, as we wait, Jesus longs to strengthen us, console us, fulfill our every need, and be the husband to us we do not yet have. Do not allow the busy-ness of the world to pull you away from this. Draw near to Jesus by reading His Word, worship, prayer and fellowship with other believers. Cry out to Him when you are weary, let others lift you up in prayer, praise Him when you are impatient, go to His Word when you are confused. Jesus never disappoints.

Jesus is even more desirous of a commitment from your husband than you are. As you allow Jesus to change you, He can use you to draw your husband to Himself.

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