In the book of Ruth, we read about a wonderful man named Boaz whose life foreshadows the coming of Christ. He was a kind, godly man whose sacrificial love redeems Ruth from her painful past and her bleak future. God used his healing love to mend the brokenness not only in Ruth but her mother-in-law as well.
I relate to the love story of Ruth and Boaz because God blessed me with a Boaz of my own. Jason’s love offers healing. While the pains of my past are different from those of Ruth, they have nonetheless been hurtful to carry.
Through my husband’s love, God is healing old wounds.
For example, growing up, I was regularly called fat and unattractive by a family member. Those words ring loudly, often drowning out God’s descriptions of my appearance found in Scripture:
In the early years of our marriage, Jason would compliment my physical appearance, but I doubted he felt that way. His words stood in opposition to my internal dialogue. Seeing my struggle, he began increasing his words of approval, focusing on his and God’s opinions. As the years (and kids) have changed my body, his words continue only to speak the praise of my appearance. When I make a discouraging comment or linger in front of the mirror, he never hesitates to tell me I look beautiful. Jason chooses to say specific and intentional words of healing, and now eleven years into our marriage, I am beginning to hear his voice echo in my head rather than the voices of the past.
God is using my husband’s healing love to release me from long-standing sin struggles.
My entire life I have been a people pleaser, and while that is part of my personality, I have made the approval of others a god in my life. I stress out trying to make everyone happy and living up to what I assume is the expectations of others. Jason gets a front row seat at my insecurities and watches me fret over big and small decisions. He gently reminds to focus less the opinions of others and more on the truths of God, and he is quick to encourage me when he sees me minimizing the influence of other’s. This life-long struggle is not easy to break free from, but with the constant cheering (and, when needed, challenging) from my husband, I’m making daily steps in the right direction.
The love of my husband is healing deep-seeded misconceptions I believe about God!
Since accepting Christ as a sixteen-year-old girl I knew God loved me, but I assumed His love was given or withheld based upon my actions. The concept seemed too good to be true to someone who had never truly experienced unconditional love. However, Jason’s unconditional love for me often leaves me speechless. He doesn’t base his love on my ability to live up to a certain standard. He doesn’t demand perfection or withdraw when I fail. He loves without wavering, and being on the receiving end of that love leaves me daily experiencing a flood of indescribable acceptance, gratitude, and freedom.
As I’ve come to accept that Jason’s approval of me doesn’t depend on my actions, I’m opening up to the idea that God loves without condition. In fact, Jason can only love me like that because of God’s love, leading me to realize the Lord’s love is purer and richer than anything my husband can offer. Truly it is God’s love that I experience washing over me like a flood, but I’m grateful he chose to expose me to the realities of that love through my husband.
God, in His incredible goodness and perfect wisdom, has blessed me with a husband whose love is very healing just as he did Ruth. And for years, I have been grateful to accept the therapeutic love my husband offers. Lately, however, God has been prodding my heart with the idea that I’m not intended to be only on the receiving side. It’s a two-way street, and God wants to heal some of Jason’s wounds through my love.
All of us have hurts, but God in his goodness desires to use our marriages to offer both parties healing, hope, and truth.
In 1982, the year I was born, Jason’s parents divorced. I wasn’t there to see the effects it had on his little spirit, but I live daily with the lingering wounds. The path his parents chose almost thirty-four years ago still impacts him to this day. And while I can see evidence of the good the Lord brought from this pain, that doesn’t negate the insecurities and fears still wrestling within him. He has vividly described to me his security shattering at the moment they separated, and he confesses that he has never fully gotten it back. He has said that his struggle to be vulnerable is linked back the survival mode he had to adapt as a six-year-old boy. And while I can’t “right the wrong” so to speak, God is showing me that through my love, he can offer Jason the security of a lifelong marriage. The Lord wants to restore the years the locust have eaten, and he desires to use me as part of that task!
Isn’t it beautiful to think that if we are choosing to love our spouse in the way God intends, we will be a proxy of God’s healing love!
How might God want to use your love to bring healing to your husband?
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