I read an article today about a wife that was having struggles in her marriage. She felt that they had been happy for many years and that things were going well, until her husband made some decisions she was shocked about. The article talked about how the first reaction she had was ...How could this happen to me, to us? She spoke of how heart breaking the whole situation was to her and how that saddened her. Then she went back to the Why me, Why now? Next, she wondered what she had done wrong, self guilt is not an easy thing to handle. Then midway through the article she talks about what she learned through this whole experience and it impressed me, because I think we all have been in positions like this before in our lives where we say "How can this happen to me?"
She learned... that you continue to love the one that disappoints you. She mentioned when she just focused on loving him that there was a wealth of understanding and she was able to find healing and hope. She spoke of her dependency on the Savior and even though her circumstances didn't change, she had changed and it was for the bettter.
She learned...that she can not control her husband's thoughts or actions. She needed to remember that we all have our agency to make choices. She mentioned that no matter how desperately she longed for him to change, she now knew that she could not wish, or force or pray enough to make him change of feel differently. She realized that if he did it just for her, that then it really wasn't a true change anyway, and that his growth and spiritual understanding would be inhibited.
She learned...that even though she cannot control his choices, that she certainly can take responsibility for her own. She realized through prayer that she could learn how to be a better wife, how to love and serve her husband and children more each day. She learned how to draw closer to the Savior and she felt peace there.
She learned... that if she focused on the choices her husband was making then she fell into the trap of self-pity. If she focused on her choices, then she realized she had more hope and happiness
She learned... that when she loved, trusted, and served her husband, that their marriage was still strengthened, even though they had some major differences. She said that she gained a greater understanding of the scripture in John 15:13, in which the Savior says, "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." She realized that she needed to put aside her own will, desires, agendas and stipulations for someone that she truly cared about. When she did that she was able to more fully love them.
To read the article yourself, you can go here:
As I read this article, I thought how these same principles apply to not only our marriages, but with our children and our friends. It is especially hard when it is your child making diffferent choices, ones that you know will not bring them happiness. You know if they continue on the path they are on, that huge trials and adversity could come there way. It is hard to remember to control your actions, you as a parent would like to make them, or force them to choose the right, but we can't. That is not what life is all about. So many things you have to learn for yourself...now that if truly hard on a parent. Realizing that things could get much worse before they get bette,r and that is a very tough thing to watch as a Mom or Dad. No parent wants their kids to hurt or suffer and yet...that is not our decision. They have their own agency, you have to trust after they are grown ( if the problems are going on then ) that you have taught them as much as you could. Then you have to pray for them and have hope that someday...they will get it! And that not too much of life will have passed before that happens and not too many permanent mistakes made either.
I think the reaons I clicked with this letter is, because I have been there and done that... on more than one occasion with our kids and frankly ... it hurts and hurts bad. But like the author in this article, I need to focus back on me and what I can do and then pray and have hope....lots of faith, because I know I am going to need it!
Good night dear friends!
“If for a while the harder you try, the harder it gets, take heart. So
it has been with the best people who ever lived. ~
Jeffrey R. Holland
“It is not possible to sin enough to be happy. It isn't possible to buy
enough to be happy, or to entertain or indulge or pamper ourselves
enough to be happy. It is not possible to hide enough or run far enough
away from trials and troubles to be happy. Happiness and joy come only
when we are living up to who we are..." ~ Sheri L. Dew