Listening is of great value, but we must be careful of what we allow ourselves to listen. Just because it can be heard doesn’t necessarily mean we should listen to it. Discernment is knowing what is profitable for our listening ear and what is detrimental.
When you are facing challenging times in your relationship, how quick are you to seek out the advice and help of others? Do you listen to the latest “expert” on TV? Or do you go to a popular book full of steps to success?
When we were married only three years we faced a very difficult season where we had no idea what to do or who to talk to. So we talked to no one, except each other and to God. We wouldn’t recommend total silence, like this, but we seriously didn’t know who could help us with the challenges we were facing. The good news is that even in this – God helped us. He heard the cries of our heart for our relationship, and He answered by leading us through it for His glory. The answers came slowly over several years, but the important thing is they came! He led us to meet some dear friends who were able to give us biblical counsel. These friends are still very much a part of our lives and marriage. God is faithful. He leads His own as a Shepherd cares for His sheep.
Now this story has become part of our testimony. What at one time required us to listen and desperately seek the advice and instruction from others has now led us to a place of wisdom allowing us to help others who may be facing similar struggles. It’s not about us, but about God. Our situations change, but God never changes. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. This assurance is the hope we cling to when we are faced with situations where we don’t know what to do.
Are you facing a similar challenge? Are there problems in your marriage about which no one knows? May we encourage you to seek help from another couple or pastor whom you respect. Tell them your situation. Listen to their advice, and be assured God will lead you to the answers your need, not to mention a rich deposit of wisdom where others can one day come in order to draw from this deep well of your experience.
As we all do our part – making plans to help others wherever we can by whatever means available, we can be certain that God will use us. And His purposes will stand through it all.
How has God helped you face difficulty in your marriage? Have you sought the help of others or have you worked on things in private? What do you see is the advantage or disadvantage of either of these choices? We would love to hear from you.