“I can’t please you! It doesn’t matter what I do, it’s never good enough!”
I remember those words so vividly even though they were said to me over 20 years ago. They were spoken to me by my husband at the end of an argument we were having.
Those words rang in my ears and pierced my soul because I knew they were true! And even to this day I cringe when I remember . . .
Harold and I were married on a warm sunny day in Riverside, California and we set out on our life of “bliss” with our family and friends waving goodbye. However, it didn’t take us long to realize it wasn’t all wine and roses.
I felt our entire problems were because of Harold. If he would just love me the way I wanted to be loved . . . If he would just meet my needs the way I wanted my needs to be met . . . than all would be right. I wasn’t the one with the issues, it was him.
It wasn’t until Harold spoke those words to me that day, that I began to contemplate the idea that maybe, just maybe our problems stemmed from me.
As I opened my heart to that possibility, God began to show me that I was expecting my husband to meet all my needs and desires and that is just too big a job for one person to do. And expecting Harold to meet those needs in my life, lead to deep rooted anger, which then propelled us into a vicious cycle that slowly began to push him away from me. Think about it! No one likes to be around a needy person. Needy people repel others rather than drawing them. And that’s what I was, a very needy individual.
But what was I to do about my needs and desires?!! I knew that they were important.
God gently began to show me that He was the one who could meet my needs and that He desired me to give them to Him. I struggled with what that would look like. How do I give my needs to a God I can’t see? Is that really going to work and if so, how??
In the midst of my questioning I felt God saying to me, “Just do it!” So this is how it played out in my life:
I told God that I had this need to be protected and loved and I said, “I give this need to You. I don’t know how you are going to meet it but I’m no longer going to look to my husband to meet this need. I’m looking to You. I know You are great and powerful and fully capable of meeting it.”
As I said that prayer, I felt an immediate release of the burden. I can’t explain it, except to say that this insatiable desire to be loved and protected was lifted.
As I began to acknowledge my needs and give them over to God, it freed up my husband to love and protect me the way God had intended him too. And I no longer felt like it wasn’t good enough. I was able to appreciate it.
God set me free that day – the day I surrendered my desires to Him. The turmoil that was of my own doing in our marriage was gone and we were able to build a good solid foundation that has continued for 25 years.
Is everything perfect? - Far from it. Do we have our issues and problems? Yes. But I have found God’s Word to be true. Psalm 37:4, says, “Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you.”