We may be a little obsessed with our listener friend Lauren Miller. (or maybe it’s just me, Elizabeth Williams) Her post Marriage Matters:Wise Warrior Wife just seemed to fit well with this week’s podcast theme. SO, we again Thank Lauren Miller for allowing us to share her article from her blog Nothing Like I Expected. Enjoy, everyone!
A wise warrior is better than a strong one, A man of knowledge than one of strength; For you should wage war with sound guidance — Victory comes with many counselors.
Welp. That right there proves my first seven years of marriage I was WAY off! I always prided myself in being wise; I know, I know that sentence is an oxymoron. Pride and wise don’t go hand in hand but what can I say, I was young and dumb. The belief was that if I was strong “enough” I could make it through anything. Countless times in my life I was told of how strong AND wise I was; so naïvely I assumed marriage would be a walk in the park. Which I suppose it was sort is if the parks one with dinosaurs in mind.
(Just seems fitting for marriage 👆👆👆🙈🙈🙈)
From the start we were anything but set up for success. Both of us had our ideas of what marriage was going to be like. I wanted extreme adventure and somewhere between meeting and marrying, Ian developed a taste for the American dream. *insert extreme gagging here*
We had very little money, mediocre jobs and a mish-mashed vision that neither of us could really decide on. Throw on top of all our lack of planning the unexpected and wonderful surprise of our first-born and you have a glimpse of what we were fighting against.
I was sure if I powered through, did a lot of grin and bear it that somehow magically we would be alright. Instead of being okay my heart was destroyed and I became angry. My life constantly felt like it was falling into a million pieces and I was just trying to gather them all back up let alone put it back together.
I was embarrassed to show anyone my damaged marriage.
As we prepared for marriage I went on and on about how I KNEW Ian was the one, that God had put us together. I became convinced that if people knew the mess we were in that they would question my ability to hear the Lord. I hid — I hid hard. The thought that someone (or even myself) would question my marriage paralyzed me. That being said, in private I questioned my choice in marrying Ian often. There were many late nights and countless journal entries filled with questions to God about if I had heard Him correctly.
I wonder how my life would be different if I had been a wise warrior wife instead of a fearful one. If I had chosen to bring in sound guidance and counselors before year six. It is only now as we are inching ever closer to year eight that I believe I am gaining my “Wise Warrior Wife” status. In my pursuit of my own self healing have I become aware of my many shortcomings. The funny thing is my shortcomings are not really a problem but my blindness was. You can’t fix something that you don’t see as broken, so in seeing my brokenness I empowered myself to completely change my marriage.
I don’t know where you are in your marriage or in your relationships in general but I would encourage you to do the hard work of introspection. I could list off all the reasons why my husband had caused the damage in our relationship and I can almost guarantee I would have you singing the chorus of, “oh yeah girl, he wroooonnged you!” But the reality is instead of filling potholes our first six years, I was digging them, believing I was making trenches for safety.
Friend, be a wise warrior.
Do not allow the illusion of strength of powering through or forcibly bringing change to another seduce you. Gather around you counselors full of sound guidance. Seek out blogs, podcasts, mentors and friends to walk with you in the hardships you will inevitably face. Most of all do everything in your power to embody true love:
Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not envy, is not boastful, is not arrogant, is not rude, is not self-seeking, is not irritable and does not keep record of wrongs. Love finds no joy in unrighteousness but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7