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Spiritual Warfare in Marriage

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One of the biggest changes in my life happened the day I quit drinking. If you are not aware, when alcoholics quit drinking they do carry on some of their old ways of managing their life. This was a battle ground for me that I had been navigating through since the day I quit drinking. Part of what I was in denial about was that although I quit drinking my wife continued to drink for about a year and a half into our marriage. It was so challenging having alcohol in the household even though I had quit drinking for some time now.
Resistance is something I practiced all through my life. The problem was when I was an alcoholic I handled resistance in a combative way. I would cut people down, humiliate them, and cuss people out. My wife was no exception. Although I was new to the Christian faith I still handled my wife’s situation with her drinking the way I would as if I was still an alcoholic. I verbally abused her, called her names and humiliated her.
On one occasion I was working a union job up in the Coldfoot, AK. area. I came home to find my wife lying in bed hungover unable to communicate with me. It upset me so much that I decided to leave the village and drive back to my work camp. I began to explore anything that would help me manage this repetitive situation I was in with my wife. I was the only worker in the camp that day because it was a holiday weekend. I was lying there in my bed crying, at my whits end.

As I was lying there I came to remembrance of a scripture I've read before. 2 Corinthians 2:5 says "hold all thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ". I began to pray to God about what that meant. I heard no answer. I cried more and begun to contemplate what that meant as it pertained to my life. The obvious conclusion was that the scripture was addressing my horrible attitude towards my wife’s addiction. I began to play scenarios in my head of what it meant if I held my frustrations and anger of alcohol into my marriage. I thought if I don't express my hatred towards my wife’s drinking she would continue drinking, I would bottle all my emotions up and I wouldn't speak to anyone about it. At this point I was expecting God to impart anything to me, still no word.
Finally I accepted the fact that I was no longer going to put my wife on a severe guilt trip about her drinking. When I spoke to her on the phone from that point on I never once mentioned anything about parties or her drinking. Finally we came face to face one weekend. She came up to my work camp with two of our kids, we begun to set up our tents and the whole time I was being mindful of my new choice of not being combative. I didn't mention anything about drinking. I was quiet and patent. That night as my wife and I were getting ready to go to sleep she begun to cry and tell me how she didn't want to hurt me anymore. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. She went on that night about how she wanted to quit drinking and make our marriage right. The whole time I was in disbelief. It took going against my own feeling and submitting to a Scripture in the Bible I was unfamiliar with for true change to happen. To this day my wife is clean and sober. We have 4 children. My wife is one of my biggest supporters. I am very thankful for the profound change.
 

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