Thursday, April 10, 2008

How to be married to a dreamer and survive. . . .

It was about the third week I had poured into painting the interior of our 2600 square foot home. I was sleep deprived, crabby, very pregnant, and generally feeling sorry for myself. Homeschooling had fallen to the wayside, with just the three "Rs" getting covered, and in the last week the kids had done nothing but watch videos while I fumed over paint fumes, coming out occasionally to surprise them with my mood of the moment. Would I explode because there was diahhrea all over my 2 year old's bed, carpet, and body? Or would I be eager to take a break and sit down to read them a story or fix them a snack. Stress was mounting, and I needed a scapegoat. I decided my husband was the perfect one. We had to sell our home because there wasn't money coming in to pay the bills. My husband was embarking on making his latest dream a reality. And I was becoming too familiar with why that old phrase is so true: "Ain't momma happy, ain't nobody happy."
To understand why I was being insane, painting an entire house over a three week period, in the wet, cool Pacific Northwest spring, in the culmination of the school year, you must know more about my life. I am married to a dreamer. I am a pragmatist, realist, and all too often a pessimist, but the man I fell in love with is a man with visons. He sees possiblility and potential where for me loom risk and failure. I knew this when I married him, and stood at the altar on our wedding day, giddy, and trying to grasp the sobering thought--this was for the rest of my life! I had lived in the same home all of my life from the age of two and my parents had kept the same jobs all this time. My new husband couldn't count the business ventures and moves his family had cycled through. He was exciting, daring and fun, and I was ready for the ride.
I didn't know that the next few years of our lives would involve five moves, two new babies and about six jobs or business ventures for my husband. He was always looking to the future...to the new and better idea. He usually succeeded at everything he did, easily surpassing his coworkers in skill in a short amount of time. I found soon that he was a conquerer! Once he had conquered a job, or a business didn't go exactly according to his vision, he moved on, without a qualm to the next thing. He was always more excited and optimistic each step of the way. I couldn't believe it! Here I had thought I'd live in the same house, the same town, the same state, and have my husband come home at the same time every day, and we'd have the perfect cookie cutter life. Little did I know what I had signed up for, and what growing God had in store for me through it!
There is a book called "Sacred Marriage." The driving point behind the book is that God intends marriage to be a way for us to grow more holy....to grow closer to being the people we were created to be when he made us in His image. It was not until I read this book that I realized that the point of being married wasn't to have the perfect predictable life. It was to live that life joined to my husband and growing with Him into the woman God wanted me to be.
My personal school of marriage was perfectly designed for me. I had married a man in God's own image! He was a man after God's own heart. God was the first dreamer. He had big plans for us, and created us to be wonderful companions and friends to Him. But he knew we had to be given a choice. We could not be forced into being His servants. We needed to choose it. When I married my husband, I could not be forced to follow his dreams. I had to choose to be the helper God intended me to be. Only then could I understand the joy that comes from marriage. Rather than thinking about what my husband could do better, how he could downsize his visions, I could pray for him. There is power in prayer, because God is almighty, and ultimately in charge. I could pray that God could work in my husband's visions. If I could not relate to my husband's dreamy ideas, I knew God could. He dreamed us up. He made the world. He made the universe! He had to dream bigger than any plan my husband could come up with, and he could work in ANY idea my husband had, no matter how hairbrained it seemed. In one of our homeschool days, we were listening to a bible verse cd, and God spoke to me in one of the verses.. "Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established." I cried. Could it be that I could commit my husband's ideas and work to Jesus, and somehow things would still work out for good? I could pray for him, that he could commit his work to the Lord, and maybe he would experience more success. I decided to do this.
I didn't know that such pain would come with the decision to trust that God would work in my husband's plans. He left his work in real estate to follow his dream of computer work. Finances were tight. He developed bad bronchitis, which led to severe asthma and frightening panic attacks that took us to the ER twice. He was humbled and shaken, and I had to be strong. I had to be the one to help give him hope, where he saw none, and I had to depend on God to give me that hope. Slowly God spoke to him and he crawled out of his despair. He began to work on a computer project that would help people draw nearer to God through accountability. God was establishing my husband's plans according to His will! It was beautiful to see the revival in my husband, and I rejoiced. But meanwhile, our finances were crumbling due to optimistic and sometimes rash decisions made over the previous four years during times of plenty when we didn't quite follow God.
My dream world I was beginning to finally get to live in, where I homeschooled, gardened, cared for animals and spun yarn was crumbling for my eyes. My dear church friends and beloved prayer group gals would be gone if we had to move far away. I demanded my husband find a job, but he wasn't ready. He was still working on his dream. So i prayed daily, and still do, that I can accept that God will work in the uncertainty of our lives. He knows that my husband has a dream. Just as the first protestants, abolitionists, suffragists, and prolifers had. And He wants to bring it to life. But it will be in His time. And it will be according to His design. He has done a great work in my husband, and a greater work in me, learning to trust my husband, but ultimately learning to trust in God.

1 comment:

  1. That was really good Angie. You made my head bigger :). Love you bunches, Brandon

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