I Could’ve Married An Unbeliever But I Chose To Obey God Instead

by Yvonne Chase on February 4, 2018

Married To An Unbeliever
Last week I wrote a post titled Disobedience To God Will Change The Trajectory Of Your Life. The post was about Christians marrying unbelievers. After publishing that post, I woke up one morning to a detailed email response from a reader who is a follower of Christ and knowingly married an unbeliever.

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Show Mercy
She continues to believe God for her husband’s salvation and shared her story with me in the hopes that our Lord would lead me to show mercy rather than judgment to my friend who is married to an unbeliever. Here’s my response to her:

Last year I was in a great relationship. We were heavily discussing marriage and headed in that direction. I walked away from the relationship because he’s not a Christian. God clearly revealed it to me. In addition, like King Solomon, he has an idol in his life that’s keeping him from a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Sure, I could’ve married him, however, I chose to obey God instead. I don’t regret my decision. As often as is impressed on my heart, I pray for my ex that he would come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and surrender his life to him. I wasn’t willing to complicate my life further by disobedience.

We make our lives hard when we disobey God. I know a lot of people, too many people in difficult marriages. It breaks my heart. Much of the difficulty comes from disobedience and pressure from society to marry.

We’ve idolized marriage and made women feel like her life is not valuable and her worth is diminished if she is not married. Hence, many women are marrying anybody just to say I’m married…look at me, I’m a part of an elite club.

No judgment towards my friend, instead, a warning to those thinking about marrying an unbeliever. Each of us has a different path in life. With that said and based on the word of God, marrying an unbeliever was not the path for me and I don’t believe it is the path for any true believer in Jesus Christ.

Stepping Up To The Plate
A male Christian friend and I were talking about this very thing recently. He too notices a large number of Christian women today who are marrying unbelievers for various reasons including but not limited to Christian men not stepping up to the plate.

Make Our Own Choice
As a result, we have a host of unhappy marriages, broken homes, and divorce. I hate to say this but Christian people are not the best example of marriage when we ought to be. We have the manual with instructions on everything from who to date, how to choose a mate and who to marry yet, we lean on our own understanding and make our own choice.

Staying Was Not An Option
Let me tell you something, I don’t know any woman this side of heaven who would’ve walked away from my relationship, as a matter of fact, there were Christian women who told me to stay. Here’s the thing, once I realized he wasn’t a believer, staying was not an option. 

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Disobey God
It was an easy exit. Why? Because God told me not to marry an unbeliever. Period! Our relationship was great, however, as great as it was, I was not willing to disobey God in the most important area of my life because who I marry can turn my life into a literal hell on earth

Front And Center
Today while reading my First 5 devotional, the title was Consistency Is Key and the devotional was about keeping God first in every decision we make.  Here’s a bit from it:

When circumstances were beyond his control, like the threat of war, Jehoshaphat sought the Lord. Like Jehoshaphat, when my back is against the wall my prayer life, time in God’s Word and worship become deeper and richer. 

However, in the daily decisions of life, like who his daughter should marry, Jehoshaphat depended on his own wisdom. Like Jehoshaphat when faced with decisions I think I can handle, I depend less on the Lord and more on my own wisdom. 

Each day we have choices to make about relationships, schools, careers, children…the list is endless. These decisions may seem ordinary but can have an extraordinary impact on the future God wants for us. I don’t want to continue to relegate God to last place in the easy times and reposition Him to first in the hard times. He deserves to be front and center in my life every day, in every decision, and in every way. 

Extraordinary Impact
And that is why I obeyed God. Disobeying God in this area of my life would have an extraordinary impact on the future God wants for me. In closing, I leave you with a conversation I had with my gym buddy/trainer about this matter:

Him: Did you get married?

Me: No I didn’t. I ended the relationship

Him: Ooops. Sorry.

Me: Why are you sorry?

Him: You broke up with your ex

Me: Better to break up now than divorce later. 

disobedience
Something to think about…

What say you? Is there ever a good reason to marry an unbeliever? What do you say to Christian women today who are making the choice to marry an unbeliever? 

Here are 2 things I’d like you to do now:

1. Leave a comment below

2. Share this video if you like it

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Melissa February 5, 2018

When a Christian woman is adding to the difficulties of marriage by marrying a man who doesn’t believe in God, the understanding of marriage is also going to be skewed. Marriage was created to be God first, then the couple, and then children. Society has altered that list.
Melissa recently posted…When Your Spouse is without BoundariesMy Profile

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Yvonne Chase February 6, 2018

@Melissa,

Society has definitely altered that list and Christians, especially women are buying into it by marrying an unbeliever. As you said and brought to the forefront for me, our understanding of marriage is skewed when we make this choice.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…He Must Be A Christian Was Drilled Into Her Head Yet It’s Not EnoughMy Profile

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Char February 6, 2018

Yvonne, I admire you making a choice that had to be difficult for you. What most people don’t seem to understand is that God‘s commands art lifeless rules. They are guidelines for us are simply God saying, “ do you want to have the best life possible? This is the way… “ to us.

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Yvonne Chase February 6, 2018

@Char,

Thanks a lot. While I don’t do everything right, I was not and I am not willing to disobey God in what I deem as the most important area of my life.

Who you marry can destroy your very life. I’ve seen it and I know too many people who do not have the best life possible because of the person they married. I’d rather be single than marry an unbeliever.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Disobedience To God Will Change The Trajectory Of Your LifeMy Profile

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Debby February 7, 2018

Relying on our own understanding is never the best thing. I’m your neighbor at Holley’s link up today.

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SUSAN SHIPE February 7, 2018

I knowingly married an unbeliever, against the wishes of my mom and grandmom (in 1967). The marriage ended. I had three children. No job. God has been gracious. Very gracious.

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Debbie Miller February 8, 2018

I definitely agree with you Yvonne that you must follow Gods leading in your life in every way every day! It’s not always easy to make the tough decisions in life, but if it’s not Gods Will for you then it’s a far easier choice than to suffer the consequences of disobedience to God. Our Father in heaven is a loving Father, but like any parent, He will & does discipline his children – for our own good of course!! I made the mistake of marrying a non-believer and ended up divorced 8 years later. My second husband is a believer and a saved born again Christian. He IS NOT a perfect man lol, nor am I a perfect woman. We work together to make our marriage what God would have it be in every way! It’s a blessing well worth waiting for :). We have grown and learned so much from each other and God has molded us more and more into “one” with each passing year! It’s been 14 years, and though at times I’d like to kill him lol (and he I lol), we know that we are on the path that God destined for us both and our children . God bless you sweet friend Yvonne ❤️

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Ailie February 8, 2018

Thank you for your post.

As a woman who has been married for 11 years and is still happily married, I do feel it is important to understand that divorce rate is deeper than just Christian women marrying non believers. I married a Christian man who has become agnostic. I could have divorced him because it was not what I signed up for or wanted. However, God showed me that the best thing I could do for my husband, myself and our three kids is to remain married and love my husband unconditionally.

The result has been a deeper love and maturity in our marriage.

Part of the problem with divorce in the church is people seeing their spouse as the source of all their needs, poor communication, and lack of negotiation. At the end of the day marriage is hard and so is life. God guides us through it and at his lead we learn to love like He does. Think of the prophet Hosea in the Bible whom God told to marry a prostitute and then take her back after she committed adultery on him multiple times. That was God’s prophetic image to Israel about His relentless and unconditional love for Israel.

I agree with what you are saying. I just think the unhappy marriages are a lot deeper than we realize and hence the divorce rate. I know a Christian woman who got divorced from her Christian husband just recently. Makes a person think a bit deeper than just the standard “Christian marriage”.

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Yvonne Chase February 8, 2018

@Ailie,

Whether one has been married 11 years, 11 days or not at all like myself, it is wisdom and exposure to truth that lets one know two Christians marrying each other is no guarantee the marriage will last and that is why I wrote this post: https://yvonnechase.com/drilled-into-her-head/

The couple mentioned in that post were both Christians yet they went through a very nasty divorce. Obedience to God is the bigger message of this post and that is why I closed it with the quote by Charles Stanley; “Obey God and leave the consequences to him.”

As many of the comments say over on the other post, marrying a Christian is non-negotiable for making your own Christian walk easier. With that said, it is not the only thing to consider when choosing a mate.

Thank you for your comment.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…He Must Be A Christian Was Drilled Into Her Head Yet It’s Not EnoughMy Profile

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Donna Reidland February 8, 2018

Yvonne, I agree with you whole-heartedly. God is clear that believers are not to marry unbelievers. But I also agree with Ailie. Once we are married, we’re to stay committed to our marriages. Divorce is just as wrong in all but a few circumstances. I don’t say any of this because I’ve done everything right and as Susan said, God has been gracious to me through the years. That’s not to say that there weren’t plenty of consequences for my sinful choices. I pray someone will read your post, decide to obey God and be spared from a great deal of heartache.
Blessings!
Donna Reidland recently posted…“On Dazzling & the Light of Christ” February 8My Profile

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Yvonne Chase February 9, 2018

@Donna,

Absolutely, once we are married, we are to stay committed to our marriages. I write with the hopes that your prayer would be answered: someone will read this post, decide to obey God and be spared from a great deal of heartache. This the only reason I’ve ever written one word in this space…to spare someone a great deal of avoidable heartache.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…I’m Mad At God And I’m Even Madder At MyselfMy Profile

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summer February 9, 2018

Girl, as always you are all over it! Wait for God to bring you a man who is actively growing and blooming in the faith and until that time comes just move on with your life! I wrote a post within this same topic last week. God is not holding us back from living our lives in a big way….we are with our own ideology that we must be married in order to live life to it’s fullest. So not true! Jesus came to give us an abundant life. It is already ours!

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Yvonne Chase February 9, 2018

@Summer,

I will wait on God forever to bring me a man who is actively growing and blooming in the faith. As you said and I fully agree, a full life is already ours because of Jesus Christ. Thank God for Jesus.

Going to find your post now…

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KellyRBaker February 9, 2018

Obeying God is always the best way! Whatever we choose to do (hopefully that’s obeying God), we need to remember we will reap what we sow and there will be consequences.

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Yvonne Chase February 11, 2018

@Kelly,

Thanks for the reminder; sowing and reaping are real and there will be consequences when we choose to disobey God.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Remember This And Forget That In 2018My Profile

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Roseann Hampton February 11, 2018

Leaning on our own understanding is definitely a downfall for many women today. Thanks for sharing at The Blogger’s Pit Stop! Roseann from http://www.thisautoimmunelife.com

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Lott February 14, 2018

Instead of speaking directly to him, God put his Spirit in another man who told Jehoshaphat that he indeed needed to go to war, but not to fight.

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