The Perfect Playground

You’re invited to read Tammy’s transparent message that will tug at your heart, married or single, it will encourage you.

Woman walking cross country and trail in autumn forestBy Tammy Rude

There I was, approaching a place where the consequences would have been all too familiar to me in the summer of 2013. Because of a business venture my husband was involved in and the direction it was going, it was beginning to take a toll on our marriage. My convictions were strong. I wanted this business to succeed, only if it was going to glorify God, where on the other hand, my husband and his business partner (my best friend) were a little more relaxed and leaned into the world’s way of thinking.

This was a perfect playground for Satan, because when a house is divided it will not stand. So, with the arrows of negative thoughts pulled tightly back against the bow and aiming right towards me…they began to fly with only several missing here and there. With every hit, I felt more and more alone. I had become the outsider. Even the word ‘divorce’ was being flung around in our heated arguments and the relationship with my best friend was slowly coming to an end.

I wanted out of this marriage, just like in our earlier years. Thoughts of my past came rushing back… going out, having a few drinks and maybe, just maybe, someone would whisk me away from all this madness, even if it was for a night. I would play that scenario over and over in my head. What was happening? You see, I was a mature Christian woman, who had on numerous occasions come along side other women encouraging them to not give up on their marriages. Yet, I was ready to do just that.

Would I be like the dog going back to its own vomit? Was I becoming the fool who was about to repeat history?

(Proverbs 26:11) NLT

As a dog returns to its vomit,
so a fool repeats his foolishness.

When things get hard we just want to throw in the towel. The voice of condemnation rises to the surface of our heart and our thoughts exalt themselves causes us to take our eyes off Jesus. We start to skim over His Word, or at worst, we stop reading it all together. We don’t push through the wall of negative voices which in turn causes our prayers to cease. We might even distance ourselves from church activities believing “they” know what’s going on in our mind.

But we need to realize that trials and troubles will come. This is not a perfect world we live in and that is why we must keep pressing into Jesus. There are reminders of times like this in scripture and one can be found in James:

(James 1:2-4) NLT

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

In midst of unbearable circumstances, it’s a perfect time to embrace grace and live out His Word. Put on the whole armor of God and charge into action, firmly planting ourselves in faith-trusting God and praising Jesus even in the darkest moments. Stand firm on your knees in prayer. Share your woes with a mature Christian woman to pray with and for you. Let the Truth of Jesus flood your heart and mind. Hold steadfast to the promised blessing just on the other of the battle. Through it all…our God is faithful!

Now, you may be wondering if I returned to the vomit. Well, I stopped just short of it.

As I approached the town bar, my heart was beating fast and the car had almost come to a complete stand still as my eyes gazed upon the building. Oh, my flesh was weak; desiring what was just beyond those four walls. However, I thank God my spirit was willing … willing to pay attention to the voice of Truth, God’s Truth. Immediately, I asked God to forgive me of my foolish thoughts and the actions that had almost taken place. Coming to my senses, I pressed the petal to the metal and returned home. It was there, I would find my blessing waiting for me on the other side of this battle.

Today, my husband is no longer in the partnership, and the business has dissolved. In May of 2014 we’ll be celebrating twenty-seven years of marriage. Has life been smooth sailing since that trial? Well, if the truth be told… on occasion we still hit a bump in the road, but today, we hold on knowing His blessing is just on the other side of the battle.

 

_DR74756-Edit-Edit_low-rezTammy Rude is a wife, mother, and women’s leader who is living a restored, Christ-centered life. Tammy speaks and writes with transparency using lessons learned through her struggles with marriage, motherhood, depression, and ultimately through her victory by God’s redeeming power. She enthusiastically presents practical Bible-centered solutions to the problems every woman and family face. Her tender yet firm style challenges listeners and readers to lay down excuses and confront personal obstacles in the power available to them through Jesus Christ. Connect with Tammy at her blog Not Mine but God’s Story  or on facebook.com/tammyrude

14 Responses to The Perfect Playground

  1. Tammy,

    Your faithfulness to take off masks, be transparent and tell the truth about the struggles even Christian women face will touch someone. I just know it. So many women just need to know that they aren’t the only ones who struggle.

    Blessings, dear one.

    Dori

  2. Very good words you have shared today Tammy! Loved how you brought out that “we hold on knowing His blessing is just on the other side of the battle.” All of us have battles and it’s better to know going into them that if we let Jesus fight our battles and we listen to His Spirit, that a blessing awaits on the other side of the battle.
    Thanks.

  3. Dearest Tammy, my friend,

    Thank you for sharing your heart and experience so transparently, respectfully and powerfully to honor God at work in your life and to bless others who may have the same or similar struggles not just in marriage but what you shared can be applied in many other aspects of a persons life.

    You hit the nail on the head when you said: “When things get hard we just want to throw in the towel. The voice of condemnation rises to the surface of our heart and our thoughts exalt themselves causes us to take our eyes off Jesus. We start to skim over His Word, or at worst, we stop reading it all together. We don’t push through the wall of negative voices which in turn causes our prayers to cease. We might even distance ourselves from church activities believing “they” know what’s going on in our mind.”

    To that I say AMEN!

    May the light of Jesus fall on every heart and draw us closer to Him.

    I love you!

    • Lisa,
      Thank you for letting me share my heart and allowing me to be “me”. From the first day I meet you I knew you were special and you understood me.
      Thank you…sweet friend!

      • I’m thankful God made our hearts not only one in His Son but also one with each other. Many are in Christ but not necessarily walking one with one another. Love you.

  4. I’ve been there too in the past. Life is hard and marriage can be challenging. My husband and I have been married for almost 30 years and we’ve hit many bumps along the way. But God is so faithful. When I turn to Him and trust Him, He gives me the strength to carry on.

    Blessings and love,
    Debbie

  5. Thank you Tammy for giving us all a glimpse of the struggles that even “Christian” marriages face. I am sure that others will be encouraged by your words. Many blessings.

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