Have you noticed all the advertisements and movies lately? So many of them are illustrating a female dominate world. So many of them make light of men always needing permission from their wives like a child needs from a parent. Then they top it off with her saying, “no” without even looking up from what she is doing as though not even considering him. Finally he walks off, slumping his shoulders. I think it is so sad that advertisers and movie makers are taking advantage of this horrible imbalance in our society. They make it seem funny, because it really is so outrageous. But the sad part is, that is what it looks like in so many marriages.
It seems like in every one of the movies that we watch where this is taking place the woman isn’t even happy. She is getting everything that she wants. She has all the control and power to have things go the way she wants them to go. So what’s the problem? Why isn’t she happy?
In what I have experienced in my own marriage, is that when things have tipped to this imbalance that I feel neglected. I personally feel unseen and missed. It took me a real long time to finally put a finger on what was going on. I remember years ago when we were first really going deep into getting to know each other I started to vocalize that I was feeling invisible. That would just send him into this place of anger and frustration. What it ended up looking like was, he was angry that all his efforts to give me what I wanted, or at least seemed to want, wasn’t enough. He would then feel as though he could not possibly fill the abyss of need that I had. Which, he is right. But one of the problems is…..it is not his job to do so. The other problem was he was either, not stepping up and fulfilling his role in our relationship, and/or I wasn’t letting him. Either way, the relationship in its current state could only go so far. Both of us were feeling loss because there was no growth or depth. Both just surviving and trying to holdfast to basically my list of requirements for order and happiness.
What I mean by it is not his job, is exactly that. It is not his and only his job to make sure that I am seen and known. It is mine. I think that has to be addressed first and foremost. I, first and foremost, have to know that I am seen and known by God. I have to have a relationship where I am receiving from God my core validation of who I am. But not just who I am as Jennifer, but who I am to God. Jennifer, tends to fill lots of different roles here on this earth. Jennifer is wife, mother, daughter, friend, massage therapist, employer, PTSA member and so on. I am talking about Jennifer as God’s blessed Creation, beloved Daughter and His chosen Bride, really knowing who I am to God and hearing from Him. I can not hear from Him if I do not stop to listen. I can not hear from Him if I do not stop and spend time with Him just like I would when I plan, or get taken out by my husband out on a date. You know, where we can actually have a conversation without kids and work interrupting. God needs that quiet time with me. A time where we are not just off and running with some scripture or some agenda, but really focused on just being with Him. If every time you went on a date with your man and all he did was talk about things that interested him, or things going on in his life and the only way he included you was to let you know how it is that you can help him with those things…..it would feel so selfish and one sided. You would feel missed. That is how I believe we leave God feeling.
What if the only time your husband spent with you was in the word?
“Ok, let’s go out on a date, make sure you bring your bible because we are going to spend our whole time focused on and in the word? “
“Ok, let’s go out on a date, make sure you bring the finances because we are going to put our emphasis on the budget?”
Would you feel like you really connected relationally? Would there have been an intimate and personal encounter? He would have totally missed your heart right?
Now for heaven’s sake….I am not saying you can not have an encounter with God through the bible. I just want to clarify this. What I am saying is so many well intentioned Christians only seek God through the bible like some people seek God through Mary, or some other thing. Just like the person out on a date with their spouse but having no depth or intimacy. Two people going through the motions but totally missing each others hearts.
****Please know that I am in no way bashing any religion. I am merely painting the picture of what we do as humans no matter what religion, trying to get it right but missing the intimacy that we need and God needs us to have with Him. We miss the relationship that we were created for.****
I think that is a lot and a good stopping point for today. We will talk about the other part of him either not stepping up, and/or I was not letting him in the next blog.
Again, I am just Jennifer. I am sharing from my perspective and my experience which ended up completely changing my marriage to both my husband and my God. It has allowed me the freedom to be more of who God had intended me to be. I hope it can inspire growth and depth of relationship for you.