By Kendra Roehl
Have you ever tried to hide your problems from others? Or want them to think you have the perfect marriage or family? Are you keeping close watch on what others don’t see?
While scrolling our most recent family photos, I pause on the ones of my husband and I. In them, we’re laughing and smiling, even cuddled up in an embrace. While thinking about which one to post, I was immediately struck by how happy we were in the photos, yes, but also how deceiving that could make our relationship seem to others on the outside looking in.
It crossed my mind that just a short 24 months earlier, he and I walked through the hardest season of our marriage. It was the first time the thought of living apart from one another ever seriously crossed my mind. That was a season of sitting with pain, getting honest, bearing hard truths, and offering apologies and promises of something different.
There were tears and sleepless nights. Deep wounds were exposed. There were therapy sessions, honest ongoing conversations without taking offense, and friends who prayed over us when we didn’t have the words or the strength to believe the good for ourselves.
This is the lie that sometimes permeates social media: someone else’s life and marriage is perfect. But that’s simply not the case.
My husband and I love each other as imperfect people who both brought baggage to our relationship that needed to be exposed and addressed. And we’re still working on it.
So why do I tell you all of this? Because I know some of you are in a hard spot right now. Maybe no one knows what you’re going through. Others may have voiced their concerns and you aren’t sure where to start. You might be too embarrassed to reach out.
Can I tell you in the most loving way, friend, that sometimes we need the guidance and listening ear of others to grow and be better? Therapists and counselors are amazing at helping us do the hard work. Sometimes medication is needed.
No matter what, I know you were not meant to walk through a hard season alone. God is near. And he uses others to help us find healing, wholeness, and deeper relationships with loved ones.
Let’s look at the places in our lives that need to be addressed and do the hard work to get help. Even more importantly, to be healed. We’re praying for you, friend.
He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds. Psalm 147:3 (NLT)
Wife Step: Take an honest assessment of your marriage and get outside help if it’s needed.
Kristin Demery, Kendra Roehl, and Julie Fisk—creators of the website The Ruth Experience—are three friends whose lives are intertwined as writers, speakers, wives, moms, and world-changers. Together, they have written about kindness, generosity, failure, struggle, loss, a longing for true friendship and an unwavering desire to live intentionally through it all. They have several published books, including the One Year Daily Acts of Kindness devotional, One Year Daily Acts of Friendship: 365 Days to Finding, Keeping, and Loving Your Friends, 100 Daily Acts of Friendship for Girls: A Devotional and their newly released, One Good Word A Day.