Are You Placing Your Spouse Above God?
- Keren Kanyago Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- Published Jun 26, 2023
Let's face it, falling in love is one of the most exhilarating feelings under the sun. At the onset of your relationship, things may get a tad foggy whenever you think about or meet with your special someone. Your palms may break out in a sweat, your cheeks flush, and your heart thumps thunderously. That's because a decent amount of "feel-good" hormones are coursing through your body.
Your wedding day then becomes the cherry on top. Seeing that you are now husband and wife, you have the legal right to spend every waking minute reveling in your love. Everything else takes a backseat. Nothing else matters as long as you are together. Frequently in the process of falling in love and eventually starting a family, it's easy for couples to relocate their relationship with God to the back burner. This article will explore why it's detrimental to do that and delve into the tell-tale signs of when you are trudging this slippery path.
Is it Wrong to Place Your Spouse Above God?
"Jesus said to him, 'you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.'" (Mathew 22:37).
God is your creator, and He demands the first and central place in your life. It's in Him that we live, move, and have our being (Acts 17:28). To enjoy a fruitful life, He asks that we abide in Him. Just like fish cannot thrive outside water, we cannot live a purpose-filled life without God as our priority.
Throughout the Scriptures, God does not mince his words concerning man's priorities. In the Old Testament, God asked the children of Israel to ensure that they did not have any other gods before Him. He also warned them against making carved images or bowing down to them. He told them outrightly that He is a jealous God (Exodus 20:5).
In the New Testament, Jesus warned that whoever loved his father, mother, son, or daughter more than him was not worthy of Him (Mathew 10: 37). He further stated that no one could qualify as his disciple unless he hated his father, mother, wife, and children (Luke 14:26). God uses very strong terms to dissuade humankind from placing things or people above Him. He even asks you to "hate" your father, mother, wife, and children. The term hate serves to show the gravity of this commandment.
Signs That You are Placing Your Spouse Above God
1. You Ditched Your Personal Time With God After Your Spouse Came Along
"The Lord looks down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there are any who understand, who seek God." (Psalm 14:2)
God wants to fellowship with each of us. He sent His son to die on the cross so that He could reconcile humanity to Himself. And though He never leaves us, we need to seek Him in order to enjoy fellowship with Him. Seeking God requires conscious effort. It's the deliberate action on our part to get in tune with God. We do this through prayer and studying Scripture. In His teachings, Jesus admonished His followers to consistently seek the father.
He taught that men should always pray and not lose heart (Luke 18:1). While in the wilderness being tempted by the devil, Jesus declared that Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Mathew 4:4). These two disciplines of praying and reading the Bible are integral for a healthy Christian's life.
Sadly, we sometimes allow these disciplines to fall by the wayside after God blesses us with spouses. We may opine that we are too enthralled in our marriages with no time to spare. We forsake our first love.
"Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent." (Revelation 2:4-5)
If you are too consumed in your marriage such that you have tossed your fellowship with God out the window, you are treading on murky waters. God would have you repent and make Him your priority.
2. You Look up to Your Spouse for Fulfillment
"Thus says the Lord, cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart departs from the Lord. For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see when good comes, but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land which is not inhabited." (Jeremiah 17:5-6)
"For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness." (Psalm 107:9).
Only God can satisfy a human soul. It's in God that we live, move, and have our being (Acts 17:28). Outside Him is deep-seated disillusionment that no one and nothing can quench. Sometimes couples believe they will never feel sad, lonely, or confused another day in their lives after tying the knot. They count on their spouses for complete emotional fulfillment.
And while spouses need to fulfill each other's emotional needs, only God can make a human being whole. God frowns upon people who put their trust in other human beings so much so that He says they are cursed. A good marriage is made up of two people who have found their identity and fulfillment in God.
3. You Expect Your Spouse to Fix All Your Problems
You desire a new luxurious house by the beach, yet you are aware that your family's finances don't look good. You nonetheless pester your spouse about it. You constantly ask them to bend over backward to meet your whims. The truth is that human beings are limited. There's only so much that your spouse can do for you. For instance, your spouse may be able to guide your children in the ways of God, but they can't change the heart of an unruly child. Only God can change the heart of a human being. Expecting your spouse to fix all your problems is another glaring sign that you have placed them above God.
4. Your Spouse Makes You Compromise Obedience to God
"But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: "We ought to obey God rather than men." (Acts 5:29)
You cannot claim to love God if you do not obey His Word (John 14:23). If your spouse tends to make you disobey God, that shows that you have placed them above God. For instance, you attend a job interview, and the human resource manager informs you that you were successful.
But there's a catch. They ask you for a bribe for you to clinch the job. When you share the news with your spouse, they urge you to give it. Yet you know that God frowns upon the same (Exodus 23:8). Allowing your spouse to lure you into sin is another sign that you are placing them before God.
5. You Demand Perfection From Your Spouse
"As it is written: 'There is none righteous, no, not one.'" (Romans 3:10).
As cliche as it sounds, none of us is perfect. The wonderful partner who swept you off your feet has their fair share of shortcomings that may throw you for a loop. Perhaps they are serial procrastinators, or they have the memory of a goldfish, often forgetting important dates like birthdays and anniversaries. To live in harmony with them, you need to accept that they are not perfect and constantly forgive them when their weaknesses come to the fore.
Demanding perfection from your partner is another sign that you are elevating them to the place of God. Remember that only God is perfect.
Keren Kanyago is a freelance writer and blogger at Parenting Spring. As a wife and mom, she uses her blog to weigh in on pertinent issues around parenting, marriage, and the Christian Faith. She holds a degree in mass communication with a specialty in print media. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram and/or shoot her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of Salem Web Network and Salem Media Group.
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