Family, Jesus

Marriage March: Being Unequally Yoked

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Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
– 2 Corinthians 6:14 KJV

Unequally yoked. What does that even mean? When I was a total babe in Christ I pictured two egg yolks of different sizes. Oops.

In a message one Sunday the preacher described being unequally yoked as two oxen joined together by a yoke but trying to go in different directions. When we have this situation in our marriages, one of us is striving for the Lord and one of us is striving for the world.

It hit my heart hard. It perfectly summed up what I go through.

As Christians we are taught to revere God’s word. Heed his instructions. Yet so many find themselves in this situation that the Lord so clearly warned us about. Some through no real fault of their own (besides plain ol’ sin nature) – perhaps they got married as unbelievers and then one got saved somewhere down the line while the other didn’t. Some go through it because of blatant disobedience while being backslidden (raises hand). Still others go through it because of some kind of weird naivete in which they not only allowed themselves to fall in love with an unbeliever but then they think they will change him and he’ll get saved. (I know some get married under that pretense and then it does actually work out that the spouse gets saved right away. I even watched it happen to a friend of mine! Well, what can I say except Praise God? The value of one!)

I write this as a warning to those who don’t know, or who aren’t taking his Word seriously enough. It’s serious, gals. Being married to an unbeliever is a world of hurt. It’s a cross to bear for sure. And you might be bearing it your whole life. I know we all have our crosses to bear and if it wasn’t this, it would be something else….but not having a husband on your team is so sad and it’s maybe something that can be prevented. Hence my warning!

I’m the woman at church with a gaggle of kids and no husband there to help. I have to watch as the head of our family dispenses worldly advice to our children. He doesn’t see the value of homeschooling. He doesn’t have a peace and sense of trust in the Lord, that everything is working out, because he doesn’t believe. There is a lot of fretting and worrying. It spreads to all of us because our position with an unsaved head seems so tenuous. My children are confused and sad. What makes it even harder is that they have such a good relationship with him (for the most part – my oldest and he do bump heads). They love their daddy…but, he’s wrong about the Lord? It’s hard for a child to reconcile. And it creates a weird dual culture in our household because I am saying/displaying one thing and my husband, another. Throw in his resentment of all this and it’s just very messy on the best days and heartbreaking on the worst.

I’m not asking for pity. I just want to tell you how hard it is. I can’t even express to you how hard it is. At the same time I do have to “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12 NIV
This isn’t the cross I would have chosen for myself to bear, but the Lord knows better than I do and I have to believe that it’s all for a reason. And just keep praising Him. God is good, all the time.
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3 thoughts on “Marriage March: Being Unequally Yoked”

  1. Thank you Stephanie for writing with such openness and truth. I have been unequally yoked for 20+ years, but it’s only the past 6 years (after having 2 kids) that it has become heartbreaking. Resentment seems to have hardened my husbands once sweet eyes and countenance. To survive and thrive I keep my focus on Jesus and His Word, both sustains me daily. I really believe that one day he’ll be given a new heart and that we’ll be united together with God at the helm! In the meantime Romans 12:12 is my prayer too along with Romans 8:28 :). Sincerely Yours, Rachel

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting, Rachel. I’m sorry to hear you struggle with the same problem but amen that God is faithful with his encouragement. “Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:4 KJV 🙂

      1. Yes! It’s a wonderful circle of comfort and praise. My mom is in the same situation and we encourage each other daily especially through His Word. I was reading 1 Peter 3:1-6 and the “gentle and quiet spirit” is what I am praying for more than ever.

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