So your spouse isn’t Christian. Or he was, but he doesn’t practice anymore. Do you ever scroll through social media and feel you’re never going to live up to the standard? That you can never be as good a Christian as the women whose spouses pray, take Insta-perfect post-worship photos with them, and facilitate their children’s spiritual formation?
We know how you feel, and many have felt that too. But God has spoken into these feelings of insecurity and inadequacy. He’s shown us that faith is just that: faith. Although this situation presents particular challenges, it does not need to limit your faith.
Foster a sense of peace.
In 1 Corinthians 7:12-16, the apostle Paul reminds us that we should strive to maintain peace in our daily lives. In a nutshell, this indicates that you shouldn’t actively seek out arguments with your partner in the future. If you want someone to see matters from your point of view, you shouldn’t try to shame them, manipulate them, or insist that they do so.
Matthew 5:9 tells us that Jesus said, “Blessed are the .” Make it your goal in your marriage to be the one who finds solutions to disagreements rather than the person who provokes them.
It is essential to remember that peace is comprised of more than only the absence of fighting. When Jesus talked about “Peace,” the word used in his language was “Shalom.” This Hebrew notion of “Peace” (Shalom) was about the presence of something but also partially about the absence of strife.
It was about letting God’s peace, grace, and power carry you through whatever struggles you were going through and welcoming God’s presence into whatever conflicts you were going through.
Jesus is not the King of Chaos; rather, he is the Prince of Peace. Invite Jesus into your marriage if things are feeling tense right now. He will provide calm. As time goes on, you will become aware that his presence brings calm to your state of mind, your heart, and your residence.
Express your faith via your deeds.
“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” -1 John 3:18
The most powerful “sermons” are delivered not merely via words but also through deeds. Although you are not likely to persuade your husband or wife to become Christians through speech, how you live out your religion might make it appear so appealing that they may get curious.
If you model Christian love and grace for your family and others, even if they never come to faith in Christ, your home will be more peaceful and joyful.
It is essential to remember that the home is the most challenging environment to practice one’s faith, but it is also the most significant. If you have children, you should demonstrate your faith to them (and your spouse) by the words you utter, the tone you use when you speak those words, and the actions of devotion, compassion, and affection you perform. The sermon your family hears may be topped by the impact of your actions on them.
Resist the temptation to change, control, or criticize your partner.
“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” -1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Simply love them. God will take care of the rest. It’s in our nature to desire to make other people see things from our point of view. The Bible never gives us a license to revise others. The Bible commands us to love others. Even when your non-Christian spouse isn’t acting lovable, he or she still needs your love. At the most difficult times, someone needs love the most, even though they may not feel like they “deserve” it.
The Christian’s highest calling is love. Remember that love is patient and kind (1 Corinthians 13:4), and show these qualities to your partner. While you can’t be held responsible for your partner’s choices, in the end, you may be held responsible for how you loved them. Stop trying to mold your partner into something they aren’t; instead, focus on loving them. God’s primary instrument in transforming us is love.
Pray and pray.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” -Philippians 4:6
Prayer is an effective practice that always yields the desired effects. There are instances when God uses prayer to alter our circumstances, and there are other occasions when God uses prayer to alter our perspectives towards those situations.
Pray consistently for your partner. You may be the only one in his or her life praying for him or her. Pray that he or she will be saved. Pray that God would give you the strength to love him or her without expecting anything in return. When you feel isolated in your marriage, pray to God that he will give you the fortitude, humility, and support you need. Keep in mind that Jesus is alongside you and that He will never abandon you or forsake you. He will be with you always.
Visualize during prayer that you are putting all of your anxiety and irritation towards your marriage in the hands of Jesus. According to the Bible, we can give our concerns and problems to God since He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).
Additional steps you make take.
Discuss potentially contentious matters openly. Think about kids, sexual morality, and the Sacraments. How will you find solutions that honor your faith without making your partner feel confused or rejected? Approach these talks with patience, kindness, and a sense of modesty.
Avoid missing out. Attending religious gatherings like church services or Bible studies makes it easy to feel like an outsider. As you glance around, you notice many married couples knelt, either to pray, help one other with their children, or discuss the Bible passages they meditated on together the night before.
Keep in mind that God loves you, not your pious partnership. You alone. He is very aware of the difficulty of your situation, and He is overjoyed that you are still seeking Him. If you’re struggling with envy, pray to God for help and ask for the strength to be thankful for your family and faith. Above everything, continue to show up. Attend worship services, Bible studies, or other spiritual activities as often as possible. Confidence in yourself is more important than avoiding feelings of jealousy.
Acknowledge and appreciate your partner’s beliefs. He is not “lesser” than you simply because he does not share your beliefs. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking your faith makes you superior. Remember that your religion is not a badge of honor but a blessing from God.
Ultimately, whether or not your spouse will accept your faith is in God’s hands. The wisest course of action is to accept His will with joy, knowing His ways are superior to ours.