In my last post I shared what a possible third reason for a high divorce rate may be: unequal yoking. But what if you’re already in a unequally yoked marriage? What’s the solution? Try to change your spouse? Separation or divorce? Absolutely NOT, on both accounts.
First of all, we cannot change anybody’s heart. Only God has the power to change someone. As much as one hopes to try and beg or convince someone into being a believer, this can’t happen through human efforts. However, one should never give up praying because as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 13:7, “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things.”
This leads us to the second point, which is that the Bible instructs believers that find themselves in this situation. We are instructed to be light in an unequally yoked marriage. In 1 Corinthians 7, after Paul admonished spouses not to divorce, in verses 12 through 14 he went on to write the following, “If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband.”
Furthermore, in verse 16, he wrote: ” how do you know, wine, whether you will save your husband? Or, how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?” The point is that by showing the selfless and unconditional love of Christ to your unbelieving spouse, he or she may be won to Christ.
There are some practical ways in which a believing spouse can witness to his or her partner:
1. Be patient. Things won’t change quickly. But as Christians we are called to persevere, be gentle and kind.
2. Don’t nag. This will most of the times drive a wedge between you and your spouse. You will show that you care by being a gentle witness who does not brow beat your mate.
3. Be real. Don’t try to be a person without flaws. That’s not a real christian. Be real and transparent about who you are without pretending to be “mr super christian.”
God created a perfect plan for the marriage relationship. That a believing man and woman should come together to be “won.” God’s view of the importance and permanence of marriage is demonstrated by the fact that His word instructs how to be a witness in a marriage with an unbelieving partner. By following this guide a marriage that is headed for trouble can be restored.