“They made life bitter for Isaac and Rebekah” (Genesis 26:35).
No marriage is perfect.
The union of two godly well-intentioned disciples of Jesus Christ does not guarantee a successful marriage.
And even the successful ones–however we define that!–in almost every case had their ups and downs.
So, if you’ve been feeling like a failure because a) your husband spends more time at the church than at home, b) your wife isn’t nearly the cook or housekeeper your mom was, c) you and your spouse argue, d) you have each lost your temper and said/done some things you regretted later, or e) all of the above, then….
Welcome to the human race.
Let me refer you to William J. Petersen’s book 25 Surprising Marriages: Faith-building Stories from the Lives of Famous Christians. It’s worth the price, friend.
Petersen has chapters on the marriages of Martin and Katie Luther, of C. S. and Joy Lewis, and of Billy and Nell Sunday. He writes about Charles and Susie Spurgeon, Dwight and Emma Moody, John and Molly Wesley, and Billy and Ruth Graham. He has chapters titled “Grace Livingston Hill and her two husbands,” and “John Bunyan and his two wives.”
Personally, I wish he had included a chapter on Elisabeth Elliot and her three husbands. But he didn’t.
I wish we had discovered this wonderful volume (written in 1997) when Margaret and I were in the thick of pastoring and she was chafing under the demands of the ministry, the expectations of the church members, and the absenteeism and/or distraction of her husband. (We married in 1962 and God called her to Heaven in 2015.)
These days, I tell young pastors’ wives that they have so much in common with one another, even across denominational lines. The wife of the Church of God pastor, the wife of the Holiness pastor, the wife of the Presbyterian pastor, the wife of the Christian Church pastor, and the wife of the Southern Baptist pastor–to name a few–all fight the same battles.
I’m glad you asked. See if any of this sounds familiar….