Relationships – Communication Matters

I wrote this blog post 2.5 years ago so there’s an update at the end!

I’m dropping in today to say, it’s ok to be human. Steve and I have a good marriage, but we would like it to be better. Recently, the Holy Spirit reminded us that we need to set aside more time for communication. In other words, we haven’t been taking enough time just to sit face-to-face and communicate with each other. As a result we’ve been feeling disconnected and we realize that’s a very dangerous road to continue traveling down. We love each other. We are simply human and got too busy.

It was a huge undertaking for us to learn everything we needed to learn to incorporate as a ministry (Freedom Living Ministries) in 2016 and get a brand new website created. Then in addition to that we felt the Lord placed it on our heart to sell our current home and downsize; therefore, right on the heels of getting our website finalized and going live with it we headed straight into preparing our home to sell, sold our old home, bought a new home, downsized our belongings which means we threw away and gave away lots of stuff, moved into our new home and did a complete remodel on it over the next six months. I’m exhausted just typing that – Ha!

We don’t regret doing any of it and are certain we were led by God to do it all, but each of these projects took waaaaaaaay longer than what we expected so at this point we’ve been working extra hard for almost a year now. It’s all been a bit too much.

Part of the problem was that I allowed life to overtake me at times instead of saying, “Nope, that particular part of this project will have to wait till later.” In hindsight, I see clearly how I could’ve handled some things differently. It’s a good lesson I’ve learned for the future.

And concerning taking our new home and doing a fixer-upper on it, we definitely do not regret it, but so many things went wrong along the way that someone finally piped up saying, “you guys could’ve had a reality TV show called The Joys of Remodeling.”

For instance, we had our wood floors re-sanded and stained. We were originally trying to get a gray color but because of the red oak floors underneath the stain, it came through as green and brown. Do you know how much dust it causes in a home when wood floors are sanded? I’m sure many of you have had this done too. Well, guess what? We had to have ours sanded down twice. Oh the sawdust!

Thankfully, the second time we chose a black stain and it ended up turning out absolutely gorgeous! But the floor fiasco was just one of many things that went wrong. I’m not kidding. It got to the point where it became quite hysterical.

In addition, there were definitely things within each of these 3 long-term projects that we could not put off. For instance, we had contractors lined up to do the remodel on our home (who all ended up doing an amazing job, by the way) and we weren’t just going to cancel on them and say “We’re feeling overwhelmed. You’ll have to come back at a later date.” They had cleared their business schedule for us. That would not have been fair to them.

Likewise, last summer as we were working on getting the new website up, we couldn’t just ask the guy helping us, who had also cleared his schedule to work solely on our project, “Can we take a two month break?”

So in the midst of all this I began to feel trapped at times by the enormous workload. Has that ever happened to you? Have you ever felt trapped by life? – overwhelmed by life?

As a result of everything going on, although Steve and I continued to go on dates and communicate some, we did not keep our marriage in the place of priority that it should have stayed in and there were decisions we should have made that could’ve prevented this from happening. The busyness of life can be a very dangerous thing sometimes. Everything happens so fast. One day into the next and the next and before we knew it we were feeling disconnected and discouraged about our relationship.

I thank God for our Helper, the Holy Spirit, Who showed us very helpful first steps back in the right direction which is to simply take more time to communicate with each other, face-to-face. It’s a good thing we are receiving help from our Helper because we’ve been married long enough to know that we absolutely cannot mess around with this kind of stuff. Let that disconnect continue and the devil would certainly make sure someone else came along who we just might start feeling connected to.

That happened to me once, you know. It was much earlier in our marriage. Thankfully, I can sit here and type that NOTHING ended up happening, but I came dangerously close to letting something happen that would have torn my entire family apart as well as sabotage my destiny. I didn’t have the close relationship with God that I do now because I was living under such a heavy load of legalism and didn’t even see God properly back then. I didn’t have a revelation of His deep and unconditional love for me.

Having a close relationship with God is such a safeguard for us!

But make no mistake about it – satan would love nothing more than to take us down by any means necessary – not just Steve and I, but anyone who is a follower of Jesus. WE CANNOT give him the pleasure of doing that. EVER.

We must keep fighting the good fight of faith and stay on our journey because we are bearers of the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Steve and I are committed to keeping it real. Thankfully, Jesus gets right in the middle of our real lives, including the difficult seasons, and always causes us to triumph! (see 2 Corinthians 2:14). Guess what? Steve and I are on the path to having a better marriage than we’ve ever had before. How do I know? Because of God’s promise to us in Romans 8:28.

We know that God works all things together for good for the ones who love God, for those who are called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28 (CEB)

If you have been feeling discouraged about a particular relationship in your life, I encourage you to let the Holy Spirit lead you in what steps to take as you hold onto this promise in Romans 8:28! It’s not just for us. It’s true for you as well!

Update: We made it through that season 2.5 years ago and are now enjoying a close connection in our marriage, have a ministry that is exploding by the grace of God and live in a smaller home with a much lower utility bill and it’s in a much better location than our previous home – quiet, peaceful and surrounded by woods!

Recently we went through something similar in our marriage with beginning to feel disconnected again but on a much smaller scale. God helped us through that time as well and we are now enjoying a better marriage than we have ever had before!

Romans 8:28, friends…Romans 8:28

If you have not yet made Jesus your Savior and received the wonderful joy that His finished work on the cross has provided for you to live in, please visit my page here titled Jesus In The Driver’s Seat. On this page I explain the good news of the gospel and you will have the opportunity to pray a prayer of salvation, making Jesus your Savior! Jesus loves you and His arms are wide open!

Sandra McCollom

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Thanks Sandra, I needed to be reminded of this!