Are you trying to change him?
She fiercely slams the door and slides down to the floor, tears streaming down her face. Thoughts and emotions swirl around in her head like a hurricane. How could he have said that? Why does he have to act that way? Why doesn’t he…? He should know… She is tired of fighting. She is worn out. She doesn’t know how much more she can take.
She is tired. irritated. frustrated.
She grabs her bible in an attempt to calm down and have some sort of time with God. She finds herself in prayer saying/yelling something like this:
Why does he treat me that way? Why does he…..?
Lord, help him see my point of view. Change him.
I don’t know about you, but I can definitely relate to this. When you feel that your husband has wronged you with lack of respect, unkindness, irresponsibility, cruelty, or indifference it is hard to not pray this way. However, God considers thoughts of unforgiveness, anger, hatred and revenge to be just as bad.
When I have prayed for my husband, especially in hopes to change him, I often find that it is actually me that needs changing. God sees things we do not. He knows the depths of our hearts and struggles. Only He has the power to change your husband in His time and authority.
Your role as a wife is NOT to change your husband, but to love him.
“Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct.” – 1 Peter 3:1-2
This whole process is extremely humbling when you feel like your husband is the one that really needs changing. But it takes, dying to yourself, and desiring to live for Christ and praying that God would change YOU. That means focusing on forgiveness, kindness, and love. It means willingly praying “Lord, show me how to love my husband how You love him. Change me, change my heart. Help me to accept him the way he is and not try to change him. I leave any changing that needs to be done to You, because only You are perfect and have that knowledge and authority.”
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” – Ephesians 4:32
Now, hear me loud and clear – I don’t have this all figured out and am sure I will struggle with this throughout my marriage, because my heart is geared toward selfishness. But, I want to constantly strive to love God first and then my husband.
Sidenote: I fully believe you should pray FOR your husband, but just not ABOUT him. Praying for your husband is done in love, not ranting or nagging (like the example above). Praying for him means digging into God’s Word and praying Scriptures specific to his struggles. The Word of God is powerful, living and active. It breaths life, never underestimate its power to transform your marriage.