I still remember having conversations in 2006 with our pastor in Pennsylvania and his wife. It was an informal time each week for a month leading up to our wedding that was a form of pre-marital counselling. They were excellent times before getting married.
One thing I clearly remember was our pastor telling me during one of our lunches – “Women are built for guilt”. I did not know what that meant at the time and tried to understand his explanation. Now after being married 11 years I understand a lot more of what he was saying!! If you do not really understand that this statement means then click here or here – they are excellent examples of the struggles women, particularly moms, have with GUILT.
Erin and I pray together often and God has been SO gracious to speak deep/profound things to us that have changed our marriage and actually changed our lives. His Word is so powerful. We pray together, wait on the Lord, share what He said and then pray & process it all out together.
One such time lead to a huge realization of a crazy cycle we were caught in without realizing it.
Let’s see if I can explain it despite how confusing it can be…
Then I was invited to speak in the Cook Islands last month because they had a speaker cancel. We prayed about it together and felt that God was encouraging me to go. It was being away in the Cooks that was so good for Erin! Completely forced to be a full time mom without me around was difficult but she LOVED it. She felt so guilt free knowing that she was taking care of the home so that I was free to teach. She felt so good and said it was exactly what she was waiting for.
It was not until I got home and we began to share how our time apart went that we even realized what each other had been struggling with. We did not even know we had been unconsciously encouraging guilt upon each other without even realizing it for months and months.
God is SO good and sets us free from guilt. We had a great talk where we came to an understanding and also lifted away all the assumptions we had that were not true. We feel much better knowing that either one of us can do ministry while the other takes care of the children – or that is OK! It is not a bad thing and it is no reason to feel guilty!
God showed us all our false assumptions and beliefs, and set us on a path where we each do what God has put in front of us without feeling bad about any false ideals of what so called “good moms or good father or good missionaries should be doing”.