My Husband Doesn’t Share My Faith

Written by Nancy Kennedy

doesntsharefaithI’ve rehearsed this scene in my mind 10,000 times: My husband, Barry, walks through the front door and says he has a surprise for me. He asks, “What’s the one thing you want most in the world?” At first I’m confused, but when I look into his eyes, I know. He doesn’t have to say it, but he does anyway: “I’ve given my life to Christ.”

But after years of praying, waiting, and hoping, so far that’s still a daydream.

Barry and I met and married 28 years ago. It was a spur-of-the-moment thing: He liked my then-red hair and green eyes; I liked his broad shoulders and sense of humor. Plus, he was easy to talk to. As unbelievers, neither of us had a clue what our future would be. We just thought a life together would be a kick. A relationship with Christ was the last thing on our minds!

Our first three years of marriage were filled with partying, softball, and the birth of our first daughter. Then, almost without warning, God drew me into a relationship with himself. After overhearing some Christians in the office where I worked talk about heaven, I began asking questions. Although I’d attended church as a child, I knew nothing about the Bible and salvation. Then one day after a long talk with Rita, one of my coworkers, I prayed a simple prayer: “Jesus save me!” That prayer forever changed my life—and my marriage as I knew it.

I wrote the handbook on how not to win your spouse to Christ

Unfortunately for Barry, right from the start I was one of those obnoxious “Jesus freaks.” I didn’t share my new faith with my husband; I pushed, forced, and shoved. Believe me, I wrote the handbook on how not to win your spouse to Christ. I didn’t speak, I preached. I didn’t live out my faith quietly; I trumpeted my every minute change. I’d say, “See what God’s done in my life? See how loving and humble I now am?” I prayed loudly in Barry’s presence and made sure he knew he was a sinner destined for hell. I even packed gospel tracts in his lunch and added a Bible verse at the end of all my love notes to him.

To Barry’s credit, he remained incredibly patient. (Maybe he was just tuning me out.) Most of the time he avoided my religious rampages by tinkering with our car. Sometimes, though, he’d get angry and yell, “Stop with all the Jesus stuff!” Barry told me he threw the gospel tracts away because they embarrassed him in front of his friends. Once in a while he’d get a pained look on his face and say he wanted his “old wife” back—Jesus-free.

Soon we were at odds with each other. I blamed any and all our marital problems on his unsaved status. After all, if we were both Christians, life would be “happy-ever-after.” Or so I imagined. I tried even harder: blasting my Christian music and scattering opened Bibles around the house; crying and pleading with him to go to church with me. Sometimes, Barry would go. But instead of enjoying him next to me in church, I’d sit there chewing nervously on the end of my pen, praying madly that this would be The Day. Afterwards, I’d quiz him in the car, “What did you think of the sermon? Did you like the music?”

“It was okay,” he’d say. “Do we have any turkey at home for a sandwich?”

The rest of the ride home, I’d sit and fight back either tears or angry words. Why couldn’t he see his need for Christ? I’d fume. Then Barry, sensing my disappointment, would pat my shoulder and say, “Look, I believe in God, but not in the same way you do.” That was not the answer I wanted to hear.

Intercessory prayer — the right way

Then something unexpected happened. I’d been reading a book about intercessory prayer when I had a sudden flash of insight. I told myself, That’s it! I’m going to pray for Barry for the next 80 years, if that’s what it takes. And I’m going to love him. Period.

That was 25 years ago—and I’m still praying and loving. But I’m no longer pining away in self-absorbed isolation waiting desperately for my husband’s salvation to bring marital fulfillment. Instead, I’ve decided that if it takes 80 years, then I want those years to be as enjoyable as possible for the both of us, despite our spiritual differences.

When I first came to faith in Christ and Barry hadn’t, I thought God had made a huge mistake. After all, two following God together made more sense than one. But I now know God never makes mistakes. Since I’d been an unbeliever when we married, I hadn’t willfully disobeyed God by marrying Barry. My situation is by God’s sovereign design. Reminding myself of that enables me to relax my spiritual chokehold on Barry.

The way I see it, God has a plan for each life. And no matter how hard I try, I cannot transform someone else’s heart. I can’t coerce, sweet-talk, or plead my husband into being a Christian. In fact, when I do try, it only drives him away—sometimes literally. If I start nagging him, he’ll get in his truck and drive for hours.

I decided long ago to accept that it’s God’s job to change hearts. That decision frees me to pursue my relationship with God without the added burden of having to bring my husband to faith. All I have to do is love and enjoy him. That’s God’s plan for me, and he gives me all the grace I need to accomplish it.

That doesn’t mean I’m not lonely at times or that I do everything right. The other day I grabbed Barry by the shirt and yelled, “Don’t you see Christ in me?” Struck by the irony of the question, he laughed—and to my surprise, said yes. It helps to remember that Barry’s not my enemy; he’s my husband. I’m just as much a sinner as he is—maybe more so because I have the power to say no to sin and often don’t.

When your loved one doesn’t love God

Here are a few things I’ve learned over these 20-plus years

  1. Live in the now. I don’t pine for a “happy-ever-after someday.” Instead, I accept things as they are, building on what’s good (such as enjoying each other’s company and planning for our future together), and praying about what’s not so good. Sometimes that means going into a bar with Barry and having a good time drinking a soda—and letting him know I love him just as he is. It’s what Jesus would do.
  2. Live honestly. In living out my faith, I let my husband see me stumble and struggle. He knows I struggle with fear, that I can’t pass a basket in a store without buying it, and that I sin regularly and often, yet desire not to. That way, he sees that a Christian’s life is one of grace alone, rather than living by a set of rigid rules. Any changes in me aren’t by my effort, but by Christ living in me.
  3. Honor your marriage. I’m careful not to talk negatively about Barry to anyone, and when he’s home, he’s my priority. This often means passing up social events I dearly want to attend. I seek opportunities to enjoy my husband and build him up, convinced he’s God’s gift to me.
  4. Pray, pray, pray. Prayer is my link to God’s presence, power, wisdom, and comfort. My favorite Scripture to pray is Ezekiel 36:26, that God will take Barry’s heart of stone and replace it with a heart of flesh. Another favorite is Isaiah 30:21: “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.'” Although it’s hard to pinpoint specific answers to prayer for Barry, I’ve seen his attitude toward spiritual things change drastically over the years. We often talk openly and freely about God.
  5. Find a support system. Surround yourself with other women who’ll pray with and for you. Also, study the Bible with a friend or small group. Attend church as often as you are able.
  6. Never give up hope. God offers everyone the same gift of salvation and eternal life. Some choose to accept it, and others don’t. But all who accept the gift do so in God’s timing, not ours. God knows what he’s doing.

I don’t understand why God does what he does. We have two daughters who don’t have the role model of a Christian husband and father. I used to worry about that. As it’s turned out, each daughter gave her life to Christ as a preschooler. Alison, now married, lives out her faith with a believing husband, while Laura’s going through a time of teenage rebellion—but even that’s in God’s hands. As evidenced throughout the Bible, God is in the habit of saving families. That gives me great hope.

Trusting God while you wait

Even so, sometimes I get discouraged. Sometimes I sit in my brown armchair and question whether God even hears my prayers. Or I sit in church and count the couples and ache because few know what my husband even looks like. Or I’ll hear yet another testimony about someone else’s husband coming to faith, and wonder why mine still seems oblivious to his need. But then there are times when Barry exhibits greater faith than I do. In fact, that’s a joke we share. I’m the one who says I have faith, while he’s the one who seems to live it.

He’s always telling me, “Why do you worry about things? God always takes care of us.” Barry almost always knows the right thing to do when it comes to leading our family. I believe that because God sees us as one flesh, my husband shares in my blessings. Because God’s promised to lead me, he leads my husband as well. I don’t have to fret. God’s in control.

The truth is, I might not ever see Barry walk a church aisle, but that’s okay. I have hope that I’ll see him walk through heaven. In the meantime, I live my life as a gift—one I never would have chosen, but one I’ve come to accept with gratitude. I know it comes from the hand of a loving God who only gives his children the best.

Related reading:
The Spirit-Filled Life: The first step to living a full Christian life is to let God’s Spirit work in you.
Talk to a mentor: If you need someone to talk to, contact us anytime. It’s free and confidential.

466 Responses to “My Husband Doesn’t Share My Faith”

  • Denese says:

    Cathy, you are doing everything right supporting your husband in his religion and culture. You sound like you have a wonderful husband and sounds like he really loves you to be able to participate in your religious activities, and vice versa. You are very lucky. I know how hard it is wishing if your husband would just want to be a Christian, just as he is probably wishing you would be a Hindu! Trust me, after three years of marriage counseling, my husband has learned this. All you can do is have a respectful trusting relationship. You have to agree to disagree. You have to compromise or you will ruin your marriage. That’s the last thing our creator of the universe wants. It doesn’t mean you can’t have a close relationship. It will enrich both of your lives seeing how each other celebrates God. It makes the world a better place. We are all God’s people. A mutual respect is necessary in any marriage, and if there is no respect, there is no marriage. That goes for any issues in a marriage, not just religious beliefs. There has to be a compromise. When your spouse tells you they believe in God but not in the same way you do, that has to be respected for a marriage to be successful. When you tell your spouse you believe in God this way, he will in turn respect you back. There will always be things in a marriage you don’t agree with, but it doesn’t mean you can’t be a close happy couple. My husband has compromised by going to a Presbyterian church instead of a Baptist. The Baptist hold exclusive beliefs, the Presbyterian church we attend don’t, I am accepted there as a Jew. I go and support him, That’s our compromise. Good luck to you!

  • Cathy says:

    Denese, Thanks for writing this. Jesus was a Jew and you are are cousin as far as religion goes. Welcome here and thanks for sharing your story. I am Catholic Christian and my husband is Hindu. He is so respectful of my faith and attends church, Bible study, church retreats and functions. I participate in funtions for his culture, sometimes even religious ones. I can see the beauty of his faith and the way its people honor God. I still would like my husband to be Christian. But it is not up to me, it is up to God. HE is a loving and all knowing God who created Dilip and knew him from the womb. He put him in an Indian family with the Hindu religion. I must trust that God knows what he is doing and has a plan. I even hesitate putting to put that I am a Catholic Christian, as many Christians believe Catholics are not Christian either because we have different doctrine then they.

  • Denese says:

    I am on the opposite side and maybe I can help.
    I am a Jewish woman married to a Baptist. We’ve been married 23 years. The first 18 were spent sharing our holidays, nothing majorly religious. We were an interfaith family. Then my husband went back to the Baptist church and frantically tried to “save” us all from hell. I’m sure you are all routing for my husband right now. Well, it didn’t work out well for my husband. He was trying to teach my kids that I was going to hell for being jewish. Shame on him is what I had to say. What he failed to understand is that I am deeply routed into my own spirituality and beliefs. I cherish my religion and culture. I want to share that with my kids. I also will never have exclusive beliefs. I believe God loves all people unconditionally, which was Jesus’ original message, regardless of “believing”. You will never convince someone your belief is right just because that’s what you were “lucky” enough to be raised in, what a coincidence you have the right belief. You will never convince someone to abandon their core selves because it’s what you believe. What you believe is your problem. It’s what you know. That’s not true for the Hindu, Jew, Buddist etc. Just as you feel you know God in your way, so do people of other faiths or even people with no faith. So my advice being on the other side to you is to learn more about others beliefs or disbeliefs, especially your spouse. Understand that reality is what is all around you, not what’s in the bible. At some point in your lives you were programmed to believe the bible is 100% true. That’s great for yourself and gives you security. That’s not true for someone else. And when you “pray” for someone to change their beliefs to your beliefs because you have “the right ones” that’s very annoying and condescending to someone who has a much different worldview. They will not want to be your friend, it is not attractive, and they will want to run in the other direction. Coexist together and let people be. God made each of us very special. If God made each of us very special, why are you, a human being, trying to change the way God made your spouse? Not everyone can buy into the Christian God, or the Muslim God, or the Buddist or Hindu God. Not everyone sees God as a Father figure. Some see it as a spiritual energy or a thing rather than a Him. That’s what you all fail to understand. Just as you couldn’t possibly understand how people couldn’t believe in Christianity to go to eternal bliss, it is the same for someone who can’t understand how you could possibly believe in all the dogma of Christianity. So love your spouse, stop trying to change them or push what you think is right, and have a happy marriage, as my husband has come to understand. Bottom line, it’s dangerous territory trying to change someone because it means you can’t accept them the way they are.

  • teds says:

    I am really impressed.I learn much how you experienced the power. Glorified the Lord. Yet, please let me say one that we are supposed to ponder in order to keep the power of God’s word. Human beings just cannot give what they do not have. If we can give what we do not have, the power will, then, be yours.

  • Jim says:

    My situation is a little different but the same. My wife does not share my faith. Your article explains a lot of how I feel. I have not bombarded my wife to the extent you did your husband but the little that I do is causing tension. I’m going to try and concentrate on some of the things that you listed that you have learned in the past 20 years and see if that helps, along with prayer of course. Thank you, helped me knowing that I’m not alone.

  • FIFI says:

    Absolutley Sally, if means salvation. God desires that all to be saved. I know he has your back and I pray for all great things in ur life and your husband.

    God bless you Sally, God is always on ur side.


  • Barbara Alpert Barbara Alpert says:

    Dear Sally, that is one of the loveliest “desires of your heart” that you could ever have toward your unbelieving spouse and children. As I just commented to another woman with a similar concern, I will reply also to you. May you know that God loves you and “deeply” cares about your unbelieving husband and children too.

    Never give up praying for your husband and children’s salvation. The Word of God says, “Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.” (1 Peter 3:1-2) Sally, stay firm in your faith in the Lord, demonstrate His love, and believe God’s word in winning him over in to believing in the Lord.

    Through your faith in Christ and the working of His Spirit within you, you are being conformed into the very image of the Lord! In addition, it is His “hearts desire” that no one perishes (see 2 Peter 3:9). You are resembling the same heart’s desire that God has towards all who do not yet acknowledge His Son…God’s word says, “This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2: 3-4) Your prayer for them to come to the knowledge of the truth is the most “precious gift” that you could ever want for them to receive.

    Carry on in seeking the Lord with all your heart, respect your husband with a gentle spirit as God would have you, and continue to believe that God will (in His perfect timing) open the eyes of your husband and children’s hearts in believing in the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. May God’s blessings of love, joy, and peace flow through you in leading your loved ones to the Lord.

  • Sally says:

    Thank you Barbara and Fifi. I know God hears your prayers and it is a comfort to me to know that Christians are out there praying for my husband. Today, I bought Nancy Kennedy’s book for my Kindle and look forward to reading more about her insights into this subject that I and so many struggle with. Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” More than anything else, I desire to see my husband and children come to a saving knowledge of Jesus. Could this verse include their salvation?

  • FIFI says:

    I will keep praying Sally. I really hope the best for you. liked ur post.

    God bless you x x

  • Barbara Alpert Barbara Alpert says:

    Dear God, I pray on behalf of Sally and her husband. I ask that Your Spirit will continue to do a good work within her heart, mind, and spirit. I pray for her husband’s salvation, that he would have a desire to know You and Your unconditional love for him. I pray that soon he would believe in Your Son, Jesus, so he may have eternal life with You and Sally. May Your love and light shine brighter and brighter within Sally so that her husband will be drawn to You. Lord, bless their marriage as You would have such be. May they walk hand in hand the rest of their lives on the path that You have prepared for them to travel on as followers of the Lord. Bind their hearts together with Your love, peace, and harmony as they trust in You as their ultimate source in and of all things. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen

  • Sally says:

    As I continue in my bible study, hiding God’s word in my heart so that it can change me, God continues to show me that I am to be concerned for how He wants to change ME, not how I want Him to change my husband. I am learning how much I need to learn about REAL love. God’s love. Unconditional love. Being married to a spouse who doesn’t walk with the Lord is difficult for sure. Maybe God has allowed this trial in my life to teach me how to love with no strings attached. I admit I have a very long way to go. Everyday is a struggle, but the fault lies with me and my internal, ever present struggle with selfishness.
    If I really believe that God is sovereign, I have nothing to fear. He will save my husband or convict him about his walk with Him when He is ready. In the meantime, I resolve to use our struggle to teach me to walk closer to Him so that I will learn what real love looks like.
    In the meantime, please keep praying for my family. I know it makes a difference!

  • FIFI says:

    Amen Cathy, ur post moved me. ur husband sound wonderful. I be praying for you both too, if you don’t mind. God is always willing, but every man has to be willing to to come to him. I really hope he comes one day.

    God bless

  • FIFI says:

    Amen Alfred, lovely wonderful comment

  • Cathy says:

    Thanks Alfred. That is great post. I love my husband very much even though he is Hindu and not Christian. He goes to church with me, has allowed me to raise our 4 children in the faith and attends Bible Study for years with me. I so appreciate that he respects my faith, more than I respect his. I’m right, right, and he is wrong. I have come to the conclusion after many years of marriage that I have to be thankful and really, it is up to God to draw him close to him and allow him to see that he is the only God and Jesus is the only way. My job is love, respect and pray.

  • Alfred says:

    Hi, I just read the last 10 entries, and feel that God is blessing us in many ways: HE allows difficulties in our lives to help us draw near to Him. We cry for help, and find that He’s closer than we thought! Each one of us came into this world as a single, and we’ll be going out alone. Yet, while here, we are called to honor God for who He is and for what He has done for mankind. After we pray and Pray and PRAY for the salvation of our mate, we may be drawn so close to God that we realize His great love for us, and we can have peace. God gives us PEACE so that we need no longer be anxious! We have given it to God and know that the answer is on its way, and it will get here in His perfect timing! I think that more of our prayers should be thanksgiving. When we thank Him in great detail for what we have, for family, friends, and for our spouse, then we realize that this is all from God. HE is the one who blesses us, and is helping us to get to know Him more personally. We are renewed from the inside, out. It begins to show on our face, that we have the JOY of our Lord! That will inspire our spouse to want the Jesus that we know!

  • Tatiana says:

    Hi! This is a very good article. I was looking for some advise how to get separation from my husband…and find this! God is awesome to me:) He always find a way how to stop me from doing something stupid. Well, but reality is stay still. We met each other 10 years ago, we both were beliving in different “gods” . He was kinda catolic, me-looking-for-something-spiritual in many ways. 3 Years later I became christian and start to attend local calvary chapel, but my husband doesnt want to follow me… So, here I am, 7 years praying and praying for him, but it seems to me all getting worse. Some times he really mocking on me and my “efforts” to make him more beliver… I am on a wrong way, rigth? I use to yell :” I am your idonean helper! I must do something for you to be saved! Go, give your life to Jesus so we can be together forever-and-ever…” Actually, he even prayed a dozen times with me and other guys in chearch to be saved. Mean, he gave his life to Jesus (by mine and their pressure) , but then he just walked away like nothing has happened. He is not reeding the Bible o praying, but can spend hours on a newspaper o sportnews…He said:” I belive in God, but not in a same way you do” Very similar?

  • FIFI says:





  • Mila says:

    Hi nancy, i just finished praying and crying to God right before i read your article. Asking him to give me an answer. I am going to get married in june. My fiance and i are both christian. However, he is mad at god because he prayed that god would help him put of this huge storm and yet god didnt. He couldnt accept it. He said he is not like job and god knows it. I have been trying mu best to support him in any way. But right now i am confused. I am so afraid that my marriage woulde be a disaster. We couldnt be role model and raise pir children in christian way. im asking god, does He want me to cancel the marriage or stay by his sise. If only i could hear god speaks to me, i will not hesitate to say yes. What im afraid is that, will god still be with me if i cancel the marriage or if i stay by his side? I just want to do the right thing. If he turned his back on god after we get married, then i wont have this question bc already committed to him until death. So is this a sign from god not to marry him?

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    Hi Ndivhuwo, I don’t know that I fully understand your questions but let me try and answer as best as possible. If I misunderstand what you are asking let me know.
    1) I don’t know of any part of the Bible that talks about couples of different ages getting married. There may be some examples of couples whose ages were significantly different but there is no indication of these being wrong or the ideal. I think there are dangers to the health of a marriage where there is a significant age difference but I have known many marriages that are great examples of health despite large differences in the ages.
    2) There are many great resources to help you understand what the Bible is communicating but there is no more crucial component than having the Holy Spirit guide your reading and interpretation. Jesus promised, “the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.” (John 14:26) So whenever you open your Bible pray and ask for the Holy Spirit to teach you what He wants you to learn and to guard your mind from misinterpretations that will deceive you.
    3) Praying for the holy Spirit to open the eyes and the heart and the mind of the unbeliever is the most crucial thing you can do to help them know God and His plan for their life.

    Does that answer your questions?

  • Ndivhuwo Tshivhase says:


  • Barbara Alpert Barbara Alpert says:

    Lori, thank you for sharing that insightful and helpful reading resource. I am certain that it will be a good resource for those seeking additional help, guidance, and encouragement. God’s blessings be with you.

  • Lori says:

    May I suggest to all of you who are praying and believing God for your mates a book that has taken my prayers to another level. Pray Big for your Marriage by Will Davis Jr., you’ll never see your situations the same! Try or any Christian book store, God Bless

  • Barbara Alpert Barbara Alpert says:

    Dear Laura and Jenna, may the both of you stand firm in your faith in believing that God is working in the midst of your husband’s hearts on behalf of your prayers and faith in Him. Do not worry about what others think or say about your unbelieving spouse. Hold onto the TRUTH found in God’s Word that says, “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….” (1 Corinthians 7:13-14) I know many women that are in the same predicament as both of you are. They go to church week after week all by themselves while their spouse stays home because of his unbelief or worldly mindset. I assure them that they (the women) are attending church week after week because of their “own” faith and not someone else’s or something passed down to them. God is the only One that truly knows the appointed time of your husband’s salvation. Continue in your faith in the Lord and in due time your spouse will be won over!

  • Jenna says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this. This is exactly what i needed to hear at this point in my life. While I still want so dearly to win my husband’s soul for Christ I realize that he was given free will and nothing will change that. I can, however, portray a kind and loving demeanor in our home and devote myself to prayer for my husband and also myself. Sometimes I feel that I am alone in this endeavor. I attend services where there are no other “single” parents in the assembly. I have been looked down on in the past and even called out for being married to a non Christian but what people fail to realize is that not everyone was a Christian before they were married. I was not. Thank you for showing me that I am not alone.

  • candace collier says:

    this morning i wain a place that keeps coming up andi just had tohave some eleif so i typed in my husband is saved but doesnt go to church or meetingor praye with me at all. so your page came up and there is so much truthin it. i have to wonder why i need my husband tosurport me, i beleive that i’d find someone who does adleave him, hoping that my lifein christ would yet e fulfilled in local ministry, as i am ordainand hold meeting but i turn down most for needing to help surport the household, when there was a tithe coming into help other with living or housing , my husband for a time didnt work and said is that what you do and money comes? what he didnt think and maybehe did think well i will not work she can run andpay for eveything. what he didnt know was it was only enough we had to children and they need things form time to time, once the power was not on when we moved into a townhouse for the last bill was not payed . emotionaly God said dont borrow just wait and do it when you get payed, i could feel his anger controlly me , to do something as if i were a prostitute. but i tried very hard to make the best of itand we got thru it. nothing changed and nothing has changed except h is having topay for things that he thought the devil got him out of. and i wen tthru heavy bitterness out of it now but no change.

  • laura says:

    Thank you so much for your wonderful article. Just this evening – a few minutes ago, actually – my husband and I had “words.” I’d touted The 700 Club a bit too much, and now I’m labeled an idiot because I barely listen to the news and yet I firmly believe in The 700 Club’s mission and mindset. My husband’s world-minded, and I’m Bible-believing. We’ve been married 28 years and he has yet to open a Bible, although he usually does attend church on the weekend. I’m floored that he regularly continues to attend church while believing those like me are basically ridiculous. I pray his heart will be softened and that he’ll know the truth – and, of course, that truth will set him free! Thank you for letting me know that I’m not all alone in this.

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    Hi Peter, can you clarify your comment a bit please? Why do you think it is best to leave “the poor man alone”? How does a person do that and still remain true to their relationship with Jesus?

  • Peter Vincini says:

    I’m in the same situation with my wife. My advice: PLEASE LEAVE THE POOR MAN ALONE!

  • Sharon says:

    dear shani– prayer–father God i pray for shani and her husband i pray open his eyss to see you that you do exist and you do love him i pray for his salvation and for the arguments to stop i pray for a peace that passes all understanding into this home God show this man that you are real and show him his need for you, i pray for a miracle for shani for this man to come to you this year even i pray for this marriage too for your protection over this marriage and household ccver shani with your protection and i pray for your words to come out of her when she talk with her husband and i pray for him to really listen and from this his salvation and a stronger marriage i pray all of this in JESUS name amen i am praying for you both

  • Thanks everyone for your comments as im going through the same situation with my husband. We were both raised In church but he said he doesn’t know if there is a god. I got upset by this but he said as a young boy Christianity was shoved down his throat and now that his a man he has a mind if his own. I am confused as he prays before he eats and tells that he wants to go church withe and he does he brings up going to church on his own. So it confuses me when he says these things. But anywayile you said Must continue to have faith and pray for god to heal him. But I’m asking if you can please pray for our marriage as its making us argue when I bring it up. I’m just confused on why he said he half believes I’m Christ but still wants to go to church and pray.

  • Sharon says:

    dear nicole– prayer–father God i pray for this woman and her husband i pray for salvation for him and i pray that they won’t argue anymore either i pray for this marriage to stay together and will grow closer to each other and to you God, open the eyes of this man that what he lost i what he is wanting again that he is empty i pray for a hunger to come back to this man again for you God i pray all of this in JESUS name amen. i am praying for you both. i have several friends where the spuse is non christian. just live your life pleasing to God and may i suggest for you not to ask him every week and live your life with God keep praying for him and eventually he might come back to God believe in miracles that God can do anything nothing is impossible with God let God convict him love sharon

  • Nicole says:

    I just read this article and I am glad to hear I am not alone in this matter. I have been married for 7 years and when we married I was a non-believer, well I didn’t know what to believe and he was the believer. It seems lately that the roles have reversed. I became a believer again 4 years ago and my husband is a hebrew israelite. We argue more about religion now more than we ever did. I thought since I finally got on board all would be set right and it is not. I have spoken with my pastor about this and he tells me to keep praying and maybe he will come to church one day. I ask him once a week if he will come and I am always let down. I used to cry about it but know I smile because I know God will take care of it. I am focused on building my relationship with God and even though I am still envious of the couples at my church, PRAY FOR ME! I know one day we will not argue anymore. I do have a fear that this may ruin my marriage, but I can’t worry about anymore . I know what I am doing for my life is the correct thing. My philosphy is I came in this world by myself and I will leave by myself. All I can do is hope to see my husband in heaven. Until then I will keep praying for my situation. Thanks again for the article!

  • Doris Beck Doris says:

    I am so glad that my comments encouraged you Sally! That’s one of the neat things that these comments can do, to actually encourage one another to be faithful to the things that God has shown us or called us to do!

    So awesome that you are daily being filled with joy and hope as you walk with Him. He certainly is always faithful as you said! Blessings to you today!

  • Sally says:

    Doris, Thank you so much for your encouragement. One of the things I’ve noted about being unequally yoked is how difficult it can be to get fellowship. My next door neighbors are Christians and I see the fellowship they enjoy in their home with other believers. I see their whole family pile into their car on Sunday mornings to go to church. I pray for the day when that will be at our home too. But, God has a different path for me right now. He meets me at my need and provides fellowship through people I’ve never even met, like you. Or, through encounters with other Christians through my job. When I first “woke up”, of course I was filled with grief and regret. But, with each day that I walk with Him, I live with more and more joy and hope! It is funny how true it is that “the mouth speaks from that which fills the heart.” (Matt 12:34) and as I talk about Him more and more, the spontaneous fellowship I receive as a result from the people I meet is a miracle that God knew all along would be there for me. He is always faithful, isn’t He?

  • Doris Beck Doris says:

    Sally, thank you for sharing your story! How awesome that you ‘woke up’ as you said and now realize that you can make a difference in your family’s lives just by being Jesus with skin on to all of them. It’s also great that you have learned to ‘let go of what I can’t control’. That is such an important lesson for all of us to learn. Instead we spend so much energy on something we cannot change.

    Let me just pray for you right now,
    Dear Heavenly Father, I lift Sally up to you right now. Thank you for speaking to her heart and calling her to repentance and for that decision she made it. I pray that her family would see the difference in her life and that they too would come to know You personally. Help her to fix her eyes on Jesus and run the race with endurance while all the time being Jesus with skin on in her own home, being your hands and feet to her family. Gave her grace for each day and each challenge Lord. Amen

  • Sally says:

    God bless you, Nancy Kennedy, for writing this honest article. I too am in a similar situation. Unlike you, however, I am ashamed to admit that at some point while our kids were young, I kinda gave up trying to follow the Lord. It felt like I was swimming against a strong current with my husband refusing to have God in our household. I basically went to sleep spiritually. Like the sluggard in Proverbs 24:30-34, I “woke up” one day to realize that my “vineyard was completely overgrown with thistles, its surface was covered with nettles and its stone wall was broken down.” Satan had a strong foothold in my home. None of my now teenage children knew the gospel and one of them was getting into drugs. The things allowed on television in my home were horrible. The Lord really woke me up that day and after coming to a deeper realization of my need for forgiveness and need for Jesus, I have been following Him as close as I possibly can ever since. Unfortunately, I don’t have the authority in my home to kick Satan back out so to speak. My husband does not want to and so my children are still exposed to so much that does not honor Him and potentially poisons their minds. But as for me, they see a different way now. By the grace of God, He is now in our home everyday. They see me reading my bible and listening to Christian music. They see me watching different kinds of programing on T.V. and I hope and pray that they see a different me too. I am careful now to speak to them about God and their need for Him as much as I can without being judgmental I hope. And as for my husband, we have talks about God on a regular basis that we NEVER had in the past 23 yrs of our marriage. He still doesn’t choose to walk with Him yet, though he claims to be a believer, but I have hope. I too am learning to let go of what I can’t control and concentrate all of my energy in spending as much time memorizing and applying God’s word in my life so that I will radiate love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self control. I don’t know if my family will ever walk with Him. I don’t know if I’ll ever have the unspeakable joy of seeing them come to a saving knowledge of Him, but I pray for it constantly and I know that God wants it too.

  • Doris Beck Doris says:

    Maja, I would totally agree with Jamie’s comment. I grew up in a home where my mother was a christian and my father and it was a very difficult relationship. God clearly tells us in his word that we are not to be unequally yoked with a non-believer and there is a good reason for that. Without that bond your marriage would never be all it could be.

    Marj, I can totally hear your pain. There are many churches out there that would be glad to stand by you. Keep looking for one.

  • Marj says:

    I am feeling the same thing even after 47 years of marriage. Where can I find a church where I will not be looked down on as as having a unyoked spouse?

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    Hi Maja, I am glad you posted your comment. I have some good friends who would have some strong words of caution for you. They have been in marriages to men who did not follow Christ. While they love their husbands they face sorrow every day from the disconnect that exists in their marriage. Every time they make a new discovery of the beauty of knowing God they cannot share that joy with their husband. Some of the ladies have husbands who are strongly opposed to their faith, but others have husbands who are ambivalent. I am not sure which is the more painful, the ones who are told to keep their religious crap to themselves or the ones who get “Oh that’s nice” to their joyful interaction with their Saviour. One friend of mine just buried her husband after a long battle with cancer. You cannot imagine her grief of knowing that her husband went to his grave absolutely hardened against the forgiveness of God. She lives with the recurring question in her mind, “Did I do something that made him not follow God?”

    And that is not even talking about the women who have drawn away from God because of their husband’s non-belief. That has been God’s point all along about intermarriage of faiths (or lack of faith). God’s message to the people of Israel was to stay away from marriage with those who worship other gods because they will seduce you away from following Him. Solomon and all his wisdom eventually abandoned total obedience to God because of the influence of his wives (1Kings 11:1-11) That is why Paul wrote, “Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers. How can goodness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the Devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever?” (2Corinthians 6:14-16)

    I know this is probably not the kind of advice you were hoping for and I know it would be a terribly hard thing to end your relationship with this man. I have to admit that I know of some situations where a Christian girl married an atheist guy and through their marriage he became a follower of Jesus. That is the extreme exception and is evidence of the grace of God. But when you have testimony from those who have walked the path that you are just beginning plus you have the Word of God directing against following that path I can do nothing other than to warn you against going in that direction. If you were to choose to follow God rather than to follow your heart wouldn’t that be a powerful testimony to your boyfriend of the seriousness of your commitment to follow Jesus? And conversely, if you choose to ignore God’s direction because of your love for this man, what would that say to him about what it means to be a follower of Jesus? Ultimately, you are not responsible for his choices but you will be held accountable for your own. Choose Jesus and I guarantee you will discover something far more wonderful than any man could bring to you!

  • Kay says:

    Claire- sorry it took so long to write back. We fell in love and it dealt with some other issues. Its so strange pointing out readings to a spouse whether Chrisitian or Catholic about the mandatory requirements of attending mass service- but even that. If someone loves God they wouldnt need to even read about commiting a grave sin missing mass, hey would want to go. This is so confusing! Lol. Im sure we would all love our spouses and significant others to miracously attend mass, participate in prayer and grow closer to God that can improve our own personal relationships with them. I think its a sign of wanting to go away from a spouse, to mark some sign of freedom and “hey i can do what i want”. Little do they know it hurts them and God.

  • Maja says:

    Hi I am an 18 year old christian girl in a very serious relationship with a non christian! I know I am young, but I have been praying about my boyfriend for a long time! Every step that lead me to where I am I strongly believe was God’s decision, and my being with him is all part of God’s plan. We have talked about futures and he supports me being a Christian 100%! He says that if we ever did get married and have kids, he has no problem with me raising them in a Christian household filled with Bible verses and prayer! He even asked to pray with me once about my purity! He’s not against Christianity, hes just searching! I plan to continue praying to God for him. He’s everything I’ve ever prayed for in a man, except his faith! I feel like its the right thing to continue to deepen this relationship, but I want to hear some feedback! please :)

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    Kay, I think you’ve asked a really good question – is it a sin to stay married to someone who doesn’t share your faith? I think it would be worse to get divorced. I’m curious, why do you think you married too soon?

  • Kay says:

    I have also been going through a similiar situation, and i have been married for 2 years and young! Mid twenties and married too soon, but its hard to let go. I have been a devout catholic, my husband told me he attended chrisitian masses, but later has been pushing away all together. Its so strange, The more he pushes away the more i find God, I enjoy church more, i enjoy blasting the chrisitian radio station down the highway. I think of my husband and pray for him to find God. But thats his choice. He said some rude comments over time about my faith and it has me questioning myself talking to him about God and his church. I tried and tried. How can someone go wrong attending mass and loving God? He is our best friends. Please pray for me, im wondering if I am commiting a sin staying with someone who has luke warm feelings about Jesus…. What would Jesus say to us? Is it?

  • Barbara Alpert Barbara Alpert says:

    Dear Nique,

    Glad that this article encouraged and helped you. The best thing that we can do for our unsaved loved ones is to be a good witness and example for them and pray on their behalf that God will bring them to salvation. This past summer I participated in a new woman’s small group and several of the women had commented about their spouses not going to church with them. I told the women that God hears their prayers on behalf of their loved ones and by them continuing to go to church regardless of their husbands, nonattendance makes their own faith more genuine. They are not following nor attending in the footsteps of their spouse; they are attending with their faith in Christ and following His footsteps. I pray for God’s blessing to be with you!

  • Nique says:

    Amen! Thank you for sharing this story….I. really need that!!! Thank you God

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    One of the things that is the most effective way of helping someone to discover Jesus is to have an authentic relationship with Him. I would think that is even more crucial when that person you want to see discover Jesus is your spouse because they will see through something that is fake or shallow. I love what you wrote BB, “My faith was tested too, but I came back around, recognizing the blessings we’ve received through each trial. Now my faith is stronger than ever.” I know you don’t want to be preachy but to be able to genuinely vocalize your gratitude for God when you recognize the blessings He has given you. I think it is equally authentic to vocalize your struggle when things are hard. I love that about Job; he isn’t afraid to speak bluntly about his questions about God but he always does it in an attitude of trust. I know we don’t learn much about Job’s wife in the story but I would imagine that she learned a lot from her husband. She was the one who encouraged Job to curse God and die. I think she had given up on God. But as she saw her husband wrestle through hard questions, honestly questioning God about “Why?” I can just imagine that she must have had her faith strengthened as well.

    I think the same could be for your spouse. Don’t focus your energy and attention on how you can lead them to Christ. Put all of your effort into knowing Him better each day and following His leading every moment of every day. Be honest about the struggles; be generous with your praise of God. Wear your faith on your sleeve, not as a forced thing but out of the genuine love you have for Him. There is nothing more attractive than a person who loves God and is fully devoted to following Him no matter what the cost.

  • BB says:

    Thanks for sharing. I’m going through the same thing. My husband and I were Christian when we got married thirty-two years ago. We’ve suffered a great amount of loss through the years, and somewhere along the way, he lost his faith in God and no longer believes in Jesus. My faith was tested too, but I came back around, recognizing the blessings we’ve received through each trial. Now my faith is stronger than ever. But my husband’s lack of faith upsets me, especially when he doesn’t recognize that those special little gifts we receive each day are divine. Sometimes, I find myself preaching to him. I’m going to take your advice and back off. I suppose we all have to find God in our own way. I’ll pray and keep my faith in God.

  • Laschelle says:

    I love this article also. Michelle just like you-my husband and I were both Christians when we were married. After 10 years he decided that he didn’t believe in Christ anymore. I thought that I was the only one going through that. It broke my heart, but this article has helped me. Thank you for writing everything that I needed to hear, to be nicer to my husband. To pray for him and try to win him back to Christ.

  • Sharon says:

    dear mj, michele and anna– prayer–father God i pray for thse wives and their husbands continue to show your self strong to the wives and also protect them God i pray for salvation to come to the husbands open their eyes God to see on who you are and there is no other to worship and you God is the only one who loves them you created tnem , show them that you love them with an ever lasting love i am praying for you all i feel for you i know more people with unbelieving spouses

  • Michele says:

    This article was so timely for me as I am going through the exact same thing. My husband and I are both christians, we were raised in the church and he was a very strong godly man when we got married. As time passed things changed and as he has so much questions about God and the Bible, his faith has declined drastically. It’s like he doesn’t believe any more. This article encouraged me to pray and trust God, while at the same time to still love him for him, to be patient and to not preach or shove it down his throat because it is making the situation worse. This article has reminded me to leave it all in God’s hands.

  • MJ says:

    Thank you for sharing this. It’s exactly what I need to know. And that’s exactly what I need to do – to keep praying and love my partner as I pray.

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