Ironically I write this post from bed, pregnant with my 5th child. I have over hydrated myself, making myself anemic and now am on forced bed rest to heal my waterlogged body. Baby Zoey-Rose at 6 months gestation hasn’t been affected so far thanks be to God. My husband has been amazing this whole time and I’m grateful that I have him.
Not so long ago our roles were reversed, and not for weeks as in my case, but in years. Two years to be exact. My husband was struggled for 2 years. Robert was 23 when he got sick with type 1 Diabetes. He worked for Southern California Gas Company and boy was he fit. He walked 6 to 10 miles a day! We had just had our daughter Ahna, she was 2 months old in October when he started getting sick.
First it was eat, sleep, work everyday. Then came the nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Near Thanksgiving it was the hand tremors and pain in his legs. By Christmas the pain was constant, he had to stop working and depression started showing signs. Doctor after Doctor, test after test, and nothing. I was starting to think I would be left a widow with three very small kids. We moved home with mom and dad. It was Doctor after Doctor, test after test, misdiagnoses after misdiagnoses for another 14 months. Well I had started LPN nursing school because I was afraid I would need a way to support me and my children if we lost this battle. I was praying for the best, but preparing for a different kind of answer to my prayers.
Robert developed a cyst on his…. um….well…..at the base of his spine. You know his very very lower back. This cyst ended up having to be surgically removed. This cyst left a 3 inch hole in that area also almost killing him, but God used it to save his life. It was March and the surgery shocked his system. Sitting in school one day, 3 weeks after his surgery, I was studying diabetes and symptoms and how much damage it does. I had a little chat with God: “Is this it? Is this our deliverance? Is this the answer you have been waiting to give us?”
I knew than that I had to get him to the ER. I walked in and he was drenched in sweat “How much have you drank today?” “Not enough” he answered. I asked again, “How much?” “6 or 7 of these” 3 GALLONS! I helped him get dressed and told him we were going to the ER. The Dr. Told me if I had waited a few more hours my fear of being a widow would have been a realty. He had lost 30 lbs in those 3 weeks, his kidneys were shutting down, his liver was not functioning and his heart was getting enlarged. His sugar was 600. The MD was shocked he walked into the ER.
The recovery was even harder, he was faced with his fear of needles and depression hit. The God that had been the center of our marriage was now his enemy and his faith was gone.
How do we pray when are hearts are desperate and there are no words?
How do we have faith when he has none?
How do we survive when the one that God created for us is walking away from his
How do we love our men when they are unbelieving?
How did I pray? Many times I had no words. That’s when I went to friends and asked them to pray and my heart prayed their words. Many times I found a quiet place and let my God hear my heart crying out to him. Sometimes it was just a “God Help Me, Be with Him.”
How did I keep my faith as his depleted? I stayed active in my church. I continually served my God and surrounded myself with those who prayed for me frequently.
How did I survive? There was one sermon that touched my heart and gave me hope. The story of “Doubting Thomas” most of us know the story well. He was one of the few that had not seen the empty tomb so it was hard for him to just take their word for it. We all have low points in our faith where doubts come in, but with Thomas he saw Christ 1 time and never doubted again. My faith steadily grew, but I found hope in knowing that once Robert figures out that God has been with him the whole time then his faith would eventually end up like Thomas’s, UNWAVERING. This gave me peace in knowing that his faith would be restored. I just knew I had to wait for Gods timing.
How do I love my husband when he is unbelieving?
It took me a long time to realize that I had to treat him like someone who was resistant to hearing the gospel. Many of you may be married to unbelieving men. I now understand the struggles that you face. To not preach is the hardest thing I had to learn the hard way not to do. Listening to him I found was the biggest thing I could do. Not coming back with answers was so hard. With Rob he just wanted to be heard without having a rebuttal following. This took me a long time to learn and it’s still a struggle.
Every time I left our room and every time I entered, I told him I loved him. There were times when I didn’t get a response and it broke my heart, but I put a smile on and did it anyway. Sometimes the greatest way to show our husbands Christ is to just love him with Christ behind our every move and every word. Prayer has the biggest impact on every marriage, use it as your everyday tool.
6 years later his faith is stronger than mine. Some of you may have to wait 20 years. But waiting is worth it no matter the length. Keep Praying! Keep Loving! Keep fighting for your marriage! Don’t give up, our God has you both in His hand. He will see Christ he will see His scars. It’s just in Gods timing not ours.