No one ever said it’d be easy. In fact, I clearly remember someone advising me against it. “Don’t marry someone who is committed to the military. He won’t be around much and you’ll be lonely.” Unfortunately, there is some truth to that. I am lonely, and he isn’t around as much as I’d like. However, I wouldn’t have our marriage any other way.
My husband is one of the kindest people you’ll ever meet. He has an uncanny ability to make a true friend everywhere he goes. He leaves people looking forward to their next time together. Sometimes it’s hard being married to a guy like that. I usually find myself on the receiving end of friends truly missing him while he’s away on assignment. There’s nothing I can do to help them get their friend back.
It’s difficult not to respond out of my flesh: “You miss your friend? Well, I miss my husband!” How is that fair? It’s not, but as I mentioned, no one ever said it would be easy.
When Korban is out of the country for months at a time, it’s up to me to take out the trash, mow the lawn, and change the air filters in our home. (Okay, you caught me … I outsource the lawn part.) Those tasks are small, but over time they carry a big weight. They serve as a constant reminder that I am doing a task that was his. Countdown: T-minus 154 days … I can do this, right?
The answer is no. I cannot do this alone. Cue the Holy Spirit; cue my heavenly Father and my Lord, Jesus Christ.
To say being a military spouse is uncomfortable is an understatement. However, there are times when I can make myself believe I am quite comfortable in his absence, comfortable in relying on my own grit and perseverance to push through the day. That only lasts for so long before I have to face reality and understand that I am physically alone day in and day out. The easy thing to do in a situation like this is to find a rhythm and a routine in being alone. The challenging thing, the uncomfortable thing, is to face that I am alone and surrender to the Holy Spirit as He guides me through this time.
Not only is that the most challenging decision, it’s the most transforming decision. When I find myself in uncertainty or feeling completely abandoned, I have to stop and ask myself, “What do I know to be true about God?” I know that He is a loving, caring, and strong Father. He knows the plans He has for me, plans to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11 paraphrase). I have to make the conscious choice to believe the words I recite on a daily basis. I pray for faith in His promises, faith that I use to trust the truth about my Father.
So, we have to stop and ask ourselves: “What do we know to be true about our heavenly Father?” What we actually believe about Him determines the amount of faith we actually have in Him. I have faith that He will continually show up for me. He may not be the one taking out the trash for me on Tuesday mornings, but He is definitely the one who hears my cries, listens to my frustrations, and celebrates my triumphs.
It’s much easier to grit my teeth and push forward using my own set of muscles. However, I find intimacy with my heavenly Father when I slow down and exercise my faith muscles. He has plans for me and plans for my marriage. I choose to trust Him in these trials and be glad for them as God uses each and every deployment to do a mighty work in my marriage.