Do you like to argue with reality? For the longest time, I did (and sometimes still do). As Byron Katie says, “When you argue with reality, you lose, but only 100% of the time.”
Your spouse letting go of some of your cherished beliefs and maybe even leaving the church are your new reality.
You can deny it.
You can wish it away.
You can pretend it isn’t happening.
Our brains trick us into thinking that if we don’t “admit defeat” that it isn’t real.
However, the truth is that you can’t deal with a situation until you accept that it is your reality.
What if your spouse leaving the church (because he did) is exactly how things are supposed to be (because they are)? What if the situation you are in is perfect?
I choose to believe that, even if I can’t see it now, everything is working out perfectly.
Can you imagine reasons why your situation is perfect for you?
Here are my top five suggestions for you to consider as you think about why your spouse’s faith crisis is just right for your life now:
You get to learn so much more! You get to truly learn the gospel fundamentals of patience, love, and compassion, and you get to practice them on someone you have already chosen to love.
You get to lean on and learn to trust in the Atonement of Jesus Christ. This is an amazing blessing! As you feel the need for help and support, read your scriptures and see all the references to Christ and the Atonement, you can come to know in your heart that the Atonement covers everything. “For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer….” (D&C 19:16).
You get to strengthen your testimony. When someone we love questions the gospel, we naturally examine our own beliefs. This is an excellent opportunity for you to look at what you choose to believe and why. (More on this in the blog here.)
You get to let go of judgment. As my life changed when my spouse left the church, I became less judgmental. I was able to see good in him despite what, by church standards, could be considered bad or wrong decisions. I was able to see that very little in the world was simply black or white; good or bad.
As I continue growing in my abilities to see multiple perspectives, I am learning to be less judgmental and more compassionate towards others. I’m betting that in your situation you have the opportunity to do the same.
You get to solidify your own covenants. Your covenants – from baptism to temple covenants – are agreements you made with Heavenly Father. Your choices, your covenants, and your commitment to the gospel have nothing to do with anyone else. Your promises are between you and Heavenly Father. As you remember and learn more about this principle, you can increase your desire to keep your covenants and honor your promises to the best of your ability.
You’ll discover more than these five reasons as you consider the possibility that “even if you can’t see it now, everything is working out perfectly.” Let’s assume that everything is working out perfectly and you have some fantastic opportunities that you would not have if your spouse had not decided to leave the church.
Who knows, maybe you can even convince him to have Sunday lunch ready for you when you get home from church. 😉