I have been sharing many of the wives’ comments from the post Monday “I Need to Change! I Can’t Go On Like This!” on my Peaceful Wife Blog Facebook page. I want us all to get to hear about the things God has done and is doing in as many other women’s lives as possible. What a treat to get to share another wife’s story and how God is working in her heart. I pray this might bless you.
NOTE – this post is not about a husband in a porn addiction, an emotional affair, a sex addiction, or a sexual affair. If a husband is involved in something serious and is unrepentant, a wife needs to prayerfully seek godly help for herself and for him. A wife is not responsible for her husband’s sin. A husband is not responsible for his wife’s sin. Here is a post about confronting our husbands about their sin. There is such a thing as righteous jealousy and anger. But even if we are right to be jealous and angry about something our husband is doing, we do need to be careful not to slip into destructive jealousy and anger. I hope that makes sense. We are talking about when jealousy becomes destructive in this post. And we are talking about one specific wife’s story and situation and what she is learning which may be very different from other wives’ situations and some things may be different from what other wives need to learn.
I am so glad to see this post and all the comments, as well, as this has been a struggle in my life, too. First, I’m glad to see I’m not the only one! The testimonies of how God has helped others overcome are HUGE and such an encouragement!
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony…” Revelation 12:11
I am still very much in process in this area of my life. For me, there are things from my past and from my marriage that have contributed to this, for sure. My dad was addicted to pornography and it tore my parent’s marriage apart (although they never divorced, their marriage was not whole and healthy). Along with that, from the very beginning of our marriage, there have been issues with “little white lies,” ogling other women, etc…
Jealousy is consuming. It takes over.
God is healing me, but I know there is a long way to go. A few things He has taught me in this process so far (I notice that a few of us have identical truths to share on this issue)…..
- Trusting in Him.
He will never leave or forsake me (Hebrews 13:5). He is sovereign and in control and even if….even if the worst thing happened that we all fear….His grace is sufficient for us (2 Corinthians 12:9) AND, not only that, but He will work all things together for our good (Romans 8:28-29). Thankfully, this truth of His goodness and His sovereignty is something that seems to be planted deep within me and so I hang on to this tightly.
2. I have pride issues.
I have my own sin that is on the same level as my husband’s ogling of other women. For me, it is a battle in my mind of thinking of other Christian men as marriage partners (mostly pondering what it would be like to have emotional intimacy with a Christian husband). So, something that has helped me lately to control my anger when I think my husband has failed in this area is to remember that I have my own sin and struggles that I am still fighting. And I am a believer! (He is not, so for me to expect that he will see sin and righteousness like I do will doom me to disappointment time and time again).
3. I also have come to grips with the fact that many of the thoughts that I allow my mind to dwell on during these times of jealousy are not truth.
They are my own made-up “stories” that I am telling myself about what my husband is thinking or doing behind my back and then I choose to believe these are truth and begin to act upon them (by withdrawing, getting more jealous, etc.).
Another thing that has helped me is that my husband finally seemed to come to an understanding of what his behavior (looking at other women) has done to me.
This is actually a rather new development in the process and I don’t really now how it will play out in the future (i.e., does he really change or not?). I would encourage those who are dealing with this issue with their husbands to pray about talking to him and express how much it hurts. It may take several different conversations at different points for him to understand.
As April says, most husbands do not want to hurt their wife. My husband – even though he can’t understand the spiritual side of why looking at other women is wrong, perhaps — did seem to show genuine sadness when he finally understood how much it was hurting me. This requires being vulnerable with your feelings and saying things in a respectful way so he can hear you. It also ultimately requires God opening their eyes to see. He can do that – we can ask for it.
Ultimately, I know God has used/is using this issue in my life to get me to that place of being fully His – basically, the goal that is the whole point of April’s blog. Taking our eyes off of man and looking fully to Him as the only One who will ever totally satisfy us.
“My Secret Idol” – (my husband’s salvation)
Book Review – Through a Man’s Eyes by Shaunti Feldhahn and Craig Gross about how men think and visual temptation