I have to make a confession that I cringe every time I hear the term “unequally yoked.” The Bible is clear against marrying unbelievers. However, we have also swung to the other side of the pendulum, where people expect their potential partners to know the Bible inside and out and to actually be flawless. Women want men who are going to be the spiritual leaders of the household, and what that actually means is that they want their men to be responsible for the women’s relationships with God. I’m here to share that my husband and I weren’t “equally yoked” in that sense of the word when we first started dating.
You see, when I first met my husband, he wasn’t what I would call “more spiritual” than I am. He didn’t know the Bible as well as I did. He didn’t even know his testimony! Over time, I thought that I had made a mistake and was wondering what to do about the situation.
However, after spending more time with him, I realized that he had such great faith. He served faithfully in the choir. He made the decision himself to be baptized. He prayed with me and helped me in ways that I couldn’t help myself grow closer to the Lord. He served as a leader in the College Ministry. Love exuded from his spirit as he served and interacted with others. It was like he had the faith, but he didn’t have the resources to express his faith until recently. Since I’ve been with my husband, I have watched him grow in ways that have just been beautiful and miraculous. I’ve seen God answer our prayers together, as well as our prayers separately.
I would have never been involved in God’s miracles if I had believed that we were unequally yoked.
Instead of expecting your husband to be the spiritual leader, I first want to challenge you to think of what that really looks like. What if you are equally yoked? What if you expect your husband/future husband to read the Bible every day, and you haven’t touched yours in months? Before playing the blame game, I want you to take the focus off of the other person and put it right back on yourself. Just as it says in Luke 6:37, the judgment that you use to judge others will be used to judge you in the same measure. Make sure that you are right with the Lord before you accuse your current or potential spouse of being spiritually weak.
Second, I want you to understand that spiritually mature looks different for everyone. I mean, there are some people that you know are not quite right, and that’s because the Holy Spirit is telling you to stay away. You must see evidence of the fruit that God has produced in their lives, especially through love. My husband has always been incredibly generous, which demonstrates humility and kindness, and that’s how I see his spiritual maturity. A spiritually mature person doesn’t have to be a pastor. A spiritually mature person doesn’t have to lead worship every Sunday. A spiritually mature person doesn’t even have to talk all that much. We all have different spiritual gifts, and while some are amazing prayer warriors, and some are wonderful teachers, and some are songwriters for the Lord, there are some who have gifts that aren’t as noticeable.
For those who are married and are waiting for their spouses to spiritually “grow up,” I challenge you to look at your own heart. Where are you lacking in your faith? What are some ways where you can grow in your walk with the Lord? Are you really spiritually mature? Because if we’re honest, we are never fully matured. We still have much to learn. So learn to appreciate the growth that you see in your spouse, and use your faith to pray that he/she grows to be the person that God created him/her to be.