My mouth hung open as I listened to what he said to me. “Choose your husband before God.”
The famous Lee Strobel, who has written some of my favorite books, was on The Good News radio show. Recently, his classic book, The Case For Christ, became a movie.
Durning our interview, Lee discussed that he and his wife had been atheists. But then… she found Jesus. He shared with us (which was also portrayed in the movie) that his wife’s decision to become a believer, damaged their relationship.
I told Lee that David and I had a date night and went to see the movie. Afterwards, David said, “I could identify with Lee in the scene when Lee’s character is fighting with his wife about her belief in Jesus and he says, ‘I just want my wife back!’ I have felt this way too.”
“And,” David added, “I’m sure you could identify with his wife…wanting a husband who believes or has greater faith.”
Lee replied, “I’m glad David was able to share this with you.”
And then I asked him, “For those of us on different spiritual paths in our marriages, how do we as women not Bible thump our husbands, when we so desperately long for them to lead spiritually? And what advice can you give to husbands who, ‘Just want their wives back?’”
“Dawna, that’s a great question. Here’s what wives can do: Put your husband first, before God.”
Wait. Hold up. Isn’t that anti scriptural?
Here is Lee’s advice to women, and I’m paraphrasing here: Marriage is very important to God and God wants marriage to last, so put your husband first. Work on your relationship. Be his best friend. Love him where he’s at. Don’t preach at him, just live out what you believe.
Then he went on to say something along the lines of this: Guys, if you have doubt about God, research. Read the Bible and look for evidence. It’s there and you will find it. God exists. As an investigative journalist, I spent years trying to disprove to my wife and myself that God was not real. But in that journey, I encountered the true and living God.
After the interview, I left the studio with new perspective.
*I’m not called to shape David into the image that I want. His walk with God is just that—his. And his alone.
*I must put David first in my life. Because when I focus on us, I will experience God more. After all, He created marriage.
*Perhaps when I said my wedding vows, “In sickness and in health,” there was a deeper message. Maybe it truly meant, I will stick by him in spiritual sickness and spiritual health.
And David too will stand by me in my spiritual sickness—carrying too much religion and not enough Jesus.