Did the title catch your intrigue? I hope it did! There are many excuses used in relationships for different circumstances, especially in the marriage relationship!
Husbands and wives are notorious for giving each other excuses, whether to defend a point, get out of serving, because of selfish desires, or to reason their way through a situation. But did you catch that I said fatal?
Fatal, not necessarily to those that excuse their way through marriage, but fatal to the marriage relationship. Using these excuses could ultimately lead to the end of a marriage. The unfortunate thing is that many of us use these excuses without fully knowing that we are using them and/or the repercussions of our actions.
If we are aware of these excuses, perhaps we will be less inclined to use them. However, before I blurt out what they are, I want to share the piece of scripture they are derived from. If you have time I encourage you to read Exodus 3 – 4:17 for the whole of the story. Below is just a synopsis.
God calls Moses to do something extraordinary and Moses responds with three different excuses. God challenges Moses with each response, yet Moses continues with his excuses. Here are Moses’ responses:
1. But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” – Exodus 3:11
2. Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?”
– Exodus 4:1
3. But Moses said, “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.” – Exodus 4:13
Moses was called out by God to do extraordinary things. God saw the potential Moses had even when Moses himself did not recognize it. Likewise, we have been called to marriage; to serve another person in extraordinary ways.
Yet how often to we look at our marriage with the same perspective as God does?
Personally, I feel like the day to day occurrences in marriage blind me from seeing the potential in my relationship to my husband. Thus making it quite easy to use the same excuses Moses did.
3 Fatal Excuses In A Relationship:
1. “I’m not qualified”
Just as Moses questioned “Who am I?” we get married and think I can’t do this… I’m not good enough, worthy enough, I sin and let my spouse down. I have felt inadequate as a wife many times. In fact, I just shared about my inadequacy in the article Revive Your Sex Life. I will be the first to admit that I do not feel qualified for marriage. There was this one time, only 8 months into marriage that I stopped in the middle of an airport as my husband and I tried to catch a connecting flight that I became paralyzed with feeling like I was not qualified. When my husband turned around to grab my hand, I blurted out, “I think you married the wrong girl!” I was overwhelmed with all that we were experiencing and I believed I was not qualified to be the wife my husband needed.
2. “What if”
Moses asked God “What if” out of fear of rejection or that people would not believe him. Moses was afraid. When we get married we may think of ways to bless our spouse, but then question “what if I get rejected?”, such as with pursuing intimacy, or attempting to affirm or pray together we question, “what if they think I’m bad with words?” Being afraid can also keep us from trying anything new, moving, or risking supporting our husbands in a career change because we are not sure the outcome. I am the Queen of “What-If’s” and I struggle with fear on a daily basis. Just the other day my husband was chatting with me about how amazing it would be to have my book published, and I began to compile the what if’s from how people will judge us because of the content, to it being a flop on the market, and how that would affect the UW Ministry. My head was spinning with doubt over something that God asked me to be obedient with. My lack of confidence in how God is working through us frustrates my husband because he wants me to see my potential and increase in faith.
3. “Isn’t there someone else”
Because Moses did not feel qualified and was afraid, he would rather God use someone else. In marriage we are called to love, respect, and serve our spouse… we don’t go around asking our husbands, “is there someone else who can serve you or meet your needs?” However, it is expressed through our actions. Every time we are selfish and choose to not serve our husband or fulfill his needs we are implying that we are not the person to do it! But that is nonsense since a marriage covenant is only between you and your spouse! There is no room for anyone else do the things that only a spouse can do. Therefore you are actually denying them altogether. I realized that I was doing this when I chose not to be intimate with my husband for an extended period of time. Our lack of intimacy was a catalyst for other tensions to arise in our relationship.
Do you recognize that maybe you have used these excuses in your marriage?
How has using these excuses or hearing these excuses from your spouse hurt your relationship?
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