A Little Unconventional

The views expressed below are those of the writer and may not reflect the views of Rejoice Marriage Ministries or the Steinkamps.

Men, has the Lord placed a devotional on your heart that you would like to share with other standers?

When we talk about marriage restoration and/or divorce topics, we usually mention the stories of Lazarus/Joseph/The valley of Dry Bones/etc. As I was reading the Bible from beginning to end, I noticed a rather unconventional story. This story is found in Joshua 6. This chapter is about the fall of Jericho.

But the LORD said to Joshua, “I have given you Jericho, its king, and all its strong warriors. You and your fighting men should march around the town once a day for six days. Seven priests will walk ahead of the Ark, each carrying a ram’s horn. On the seventh day you are to march around the town seven times, with the priests blowing the horns.”  Joshua 6: 2-4 (NLT) 

Wait? What? Can you imagine being under Joshua’s guidance and hearing the Lord say that wherever we set foot, the land will be ours? How exciting! Can you imagine the Lord telling us to march around fortified walls? From a human standpoint, what will that really do? Seriously?

The next verse reads:

“When you hear the priests give one long blast on the rams’ horns, have all the people shout as loud as they can. Then the walls of the town will collapse, and the people can charge straight into the town.”  Joshua 6:5 (NLT) 

Can you imagine the Lord telling us that if we shout, yes shout, the walls will collapse? I call that a little unconventional. I would assume that at that time, the Israelites were kind of confused. At least I would have been. I would have probably been ready to use my sword or a weapon of some sort and not my voice. To be honest, it would have been really difficult to believe, at that time, that shouting would bring the walls down. However, I wouldn’t expect anything less from the Lord.

Now, can you imagine hearing “I think we should go our separate ways?” Can you imagine hearing, “I want a divorce?” Can you imagine hearing “I made a mistake. I am no longer in love with you?” Even after hearing those words ourselves, can you imagine the Lord asking you to pray for our prodigal spouse? Really Lord? After all that pain, you want us to stand? Can you imagine loving someone who doesn’t “feel the same” or “doesn’t love you” and treats you horribly? Can you imagine having endless court dates just to see your children? I never imagined I’d be where I am. I am pretty sure none of you imagined this either. Also, I never imagined the Lord asking me to PRAY for my spouse when all I wanted was to move on.

The Lord works in mysterious and unconventional ways. Standing is rather “unconventional.” The world, family members, and even pastors have told us to move on. We have heard the “you deserve better, move on, you can still get married since they are the ones that did that to you” advice. However, the Lord has asked us to stand.

Two weeks ago, my wife told me that she’s been thinking about coming home after an argument between us. Last week, she told me she actually wants to come home but she doesn’t know how to get herself out of this mess. She also said that there’s a reason why, because of COVID 19, our divorce court dates kept getting postponed. I never imagined I would hear those words from her. All I saw was hate. All I saw were games. All I saw was “something came up” when it came time to drop off the baby. All I saw was “She’s happier now, that’s all that matters” from my mother-in-law. Consider this, my mother-in-law has been in church for many years. If God can work on my wife, He can definitely work on anyone.

Just a few weeks ago, she and the OM dropped off the baby. Now, she wants to come home. That is a rather quick change of heart that only the Lord can do. Will you trust the Lord? I doubted Him. There were days that I would rebel against Him. There were days where I would challenge Him. I’m not going to lie but there were even days where I hated Him. There were days where I would even question His existence. Even in my rebellious days, the Lord would find a way to bring me back to standing.

I know many of you have felt the same and have questioned the Lord. I know many of you have even wondered if the Lord even spoke to you and promised restoration of your marriage. I want you all to know, you don’t have to be perfect when standing. If we were perfect, then we wouldn’t need the Lord, wouldn’t we?

Just like the fall of Jericho, prodigal walls of hate and sin are falling. What has the Lord asked of you? Is it rather unconventional? If we believe the Lord and listen to his instructions, walls will fall. Hearts will change. Communication will open up. Prodigals will look to fill that void that no OM/OW/drugs/alcohol will fill. Prodigals will read His Word and attend church. Prodigals will be obedient to the Lord. Prodigals will come home. Marriages will be restored. Divorce rates will drop like never before. Most importantly, lives will be saved. Not only our lives, but our generations’ lives. Our generations will see the glory of God. Our generations will see the work that we put in, in obedience to the Lord. How amazing will be the reward when we obey His rather unconventional instructions. Here’s to the brave. Here’s to the called. Here’s to the standers. Here’s to our future generations. We are almost home.

Jesse in Arizona

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