One of the most beautiful things about being a new wife is constantly finding new reasons why I love my husband. It’s much like being a new Christian, taking delight in finding a new hidden treasure every single day.
I remember on his birthday, I made him a box with “fortune cookie tabs” to place in it with each having a reason that I love him. After I typed and printed them, there were over 100 reasons. I keep finding new reasons and making more tabs to add to it. Yesterday, it hit me that I found the most wonderful reason why I love him. No sooner than a need leaves my lips, he fulfills it. When I needed a laptop, he got it. When I was tired of going to Starbucks for the internet, he got me a portable MiFi. He never ceases to amaze me with his sincerity, his listening and his giving.
That may not sound like a big deal but it is to me. Growing up in and out of foster care, impoverished and severly neglected and then becoming a teen mom and later a single mom of three, I learned to survive. If a need was to be met, it was up to me. It took a very tough road of introspection, self reflection with God’s direction to get to where I am today. I finally understand how to freely give and recieve love. I understand trust, healthy boundaries and what love and marriage truly means. I was lost but now I am found.
Chris and I had a many challenges in our relationship before marriage. He broke both of his hands, having three surgeries and I was his nurse for many months. We have six children combined, raising teens, I lost my job, and he totaled his car. This is just to name a few, but we stood in the gap for one another. When he was weak, I was strong and when I was weak, he was strong. We both have had our fair share of pain, heartache and betrayal so we are humbly grateful to have been given a second chance. We are also actually thankful that these challenges arose before marriage. We got a tiny taste of what was likely to come. When young couples marry and their entire engagement is like picking daisies and blowing bubbles, they enter into marriage believing that is how it will always be. Nothing humbles you, tests you or makes you grateful like trial by fire. It separates boys from the men, girls from the women and the weak from the strong.
Marriage is about sacrifice and loving unconditionally. It’s about standing in the gap providing a covering, an umbrella if you will, so that the one that you love doesn’t get stuck in the rain without protection. Ephesians 5:25 tells husbands that in loving his wife sacrificially and providing her needs, he cleanses her with the washing of the word. So each time my husband fulfills my need, I feel as though he is not only providing for me, he is also cleansing me and assisting God in washing away my sins, past hurts and pain bringing me peace and restoration. He is my covering.
Was it hard at first? Absolutely. To let go of the need to be in control and fully trust in someone after everything you have been through takes alot of courage and faith. I had to first submit my life to God and let Him chip away that invisible brick wall that I had built around myself. It was just false security masking itself as protection. I thought I built a fortress but I really built a prison.
After God chipped it away, I felt so naked and vulnerable without that wall.
But God told me to trust in Him, so I do. Everyday I wake up pushing away the thoughts of the caterpillar that was just crawling around in it’s belly, afraid to feel the warmth of the sun. I’m no longer that caterpillar. God transformed me into a new creation. I am now a beautiful butterfly.
I thank and praise God for never stopping pursuing me and my heart, even when I ran. Now I can’t stop pursuing Him so that I can become more like my father. In submitting my life to Him, He taught me how to submit myself as a bride to my husband. Despite the worldly statistics and mockery of the marriage covenant, it is the most liberating feeling in the world as well as the most thrilling adventure with all of its ups, downs, rewards and challenges.
Watch this video on my metamorphosis of becoming a butterfly and how similar marriage and the Christian walk is. ~ Bride of Christ, Child of God.
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.” Ephesians 5:25-28
I will conclude with a poem from my book, The Butterfly Movement
Imagine a love so great that it takes you to new heights,
Soaring above life’s troubles; our spirits taking flight
Bliss and tranquility have finally arrived; darkness has faded into light
Breaking free of the strongholds that have held me hostage, I have new meaning in my life.
All of my past relationships, broken dreams and, oh, so many mistakes
Led me to this wonderful person, to this very moment, to this very place.
With our hearts and souls exposed, standing face to face,
a priceless gift awaits us as we enter into this sacred covenant of God’s blessing and His grace
A vow of unconditional and sacrificial love, the same love that the Lord offered me, making me anew.
“To whom much has been given, much is required.”
So, my love, I pass this blessing to you.
I submit to you, my husband,
to be the priest and leader in our home, the voice of reason in my life,
my strength when I’m weak,
To love, cherish and honor you,
to be your best friend, your help-mate,
Your loving wife.
Copyright © 2011 by Katrina Smith
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