If you listened to the message that my husband I gave this past Sunday, you will know that we were vulnerable in some of the struggles we have walked through together.
It’s funny, two days later and we both woke up feeling raw and exposed. We trust that Lord will use our story to impact other lives!
In the 48 hours since this message was given, we have received a lot of feedback, encouragement and questions.
It is impossible to cover everything we wanted to in a 39 minute message on a Sunday morning, and I know we won’t have a chance to clarify much of it during Part 2 on February 28th, so I wanted to write a follow up blog to hopefully address some questions that came out of my part of the story.
(Andrew is planning on doing the same!)
I shared a dream that I had about a snake. I will remind you of it again.
There was a very large, dangerous snake in our house. The snake seemed to have it’s way. It went where it wanted and did what it wanted. Andrew seemed almost mesmerized by it, unable to kill it.
The snake started to bite and hurt us. Then it tried to bite Caleb (who was a baby at the time of this dream). This made me lose it.
I started screaming at Andrew that he had to save us, kill the snake, rescue us and not leave us vulnerable to it.
He tried, but he didn’t seem to have the strength.
Something rose up within me that I had to deal with this snake once and for all. I grabbed this thick, ugly snake and choked it with my bare hands until it lay limp, but not quite dead, in my arms. I threw it outside and locked the door.
The battle had been temporarily won.
This dream was extremely disturbing to me. I didn’t know what it meant. I did not know at the time that Andrew had been praying for the Lord to prepare me that he was deeply intrenched in pornography. (as you heard on the podcast)
When everything came out, the Lord told me that the snake was a spirit of lust and pornography.
Andrew had tried to deal with it on his own and hadn’t been victorious. For some reason, the breaking point was me rising up to kill it.
This is where I want to clarify a few things! I didn’t feel I had the time to properly explain this dream, and I want to take a few moments and shed some more light for those who have asked questions, or for those who haven’t but have wondered!
1. When I shared how I felt the day after our big conversation, I said that Lord spoke to me that I could wallow in self pity or get up and fight. I want to make sure you know two things:
1. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. Psalm 34:18
Men and women who experience painful, devastating news, the Lord is deeply compassionate and close to you. I shared the quick version of what he spoke, but I cannot explain to you the love and peace that the Lord showered me in when I responded to his call to “get up and fight” for Andrew.
That was his way of rescuing me. It was not a cold hearted call to stop crying and do something. It was a loving Father showing me how to walk in my freedom.
2. I was already in a place of contending in prayer for my family. This was not new for me, the Lord had already called me to walk into deeper intercession for them. In hindsight, he prepared me ever so much to walk into a bigger battle that day.
2. I know it can sound like his victory rested completely on me. This is definitely not what the Lord was trying to convey to me! Here are some keys as to why I had the ability to pray in such a way for Andrew. I believe I could not have “choked the snake” in prayer without these things:
1. Andrew had already confessed to me and was in a place of humility. In my dream there was a confession that he couldn’t do it alone, and that’s what happened in our real life situation as well. He wanted this victory, he just needed the woman who he was one flesh with to come alongside him and help him walk in it.
2. Being in the covenant of marriage with him, I have oneness with him that means I am literally a part of him, and he is a part of me. In today’s world this sounds like a negative thing. But it is not! It’s a beautiful picture of how one person can be strong when the other is weak!
“At last!” the man exclaimed.“This one is bone from my bone and flesh from my flesh She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken from ‘man.’” This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.
3. Though the snake took a huge blow, I did not kill it. The victory is the Lord’s! We cannot own the victory. Jesus Christ already won, and through this story Andrew and I both learned to simply walk in the victory that was already ours.
Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.” No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
How Can I Stand Up And Fight?
When I said I was in a season of contending for my family, the Lord had led me to two incredible books by Stormie Omartian called “The Power of a Praying Parent” and “The Power of a Praying Wife”.
I encourage any wife especially who wants to do battle for her husband to start here. The prayers in the book really gave me a starting place when I didn’t know how or what to pray. Here is an example of the prayer for the temptations husbands may face.
Lord, I pray that You would strengthen my husband (name) to resist any temptation that comes his way. Stamp it out of his mind before it ever reaches his heart or personal experience. Lead him not into temptation, but deliver him from evils such as adultery, pornography, drugs, alcohol, food addiction, gambling, and perversion. Remove temptation especially in the area of (name specific temptation). Make him strong where he is weak. Help him to rise above anything that erects itself as a stronghold in his life. May he say, "I will set nothing wicked before my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away: it shall not cling to me" (Psalm 101:3).
Lord, You've said that "Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down, without walls" (Proverbs 25:28). I pray that (person you are praying for) will not be broken down by the power of evil, but raised up by the power of God. Establish a wall of protection around him. Fill him with Your Spirit and flush out all that is not of You. Help him to take charge over his own spirit and have self-control to resist anything and anyone who becomes a lure. May he "abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good" (Romans 12:9). I pray that he will be repulsed by tempting situations. Give him courage to reject them. Teach him to walk in the Spirit so he will not fulfill the lust of the flesh. AMEN!
There are 30 prayers in the book, but I hung out on this one a lot during that season of our marriage.
I hope this clears up any confusion, and I look forward to sharing more about this topic in the future, as Andrew & I are passionate about seeing couples walk in freedom in this area!
With an exposed heart,