Christian Experience: Dispelling Doubts and Building a Happy Marriage
Editor’s Note: Trust is paramount between husband and wife. It’s the cornerstone of a marriage, and if that’s lost, it’s doomed to failure. But in this current age there’s an epidemic of extramarital affairs and people taking on mistresses; the temptations of the outside world can’t be overcome. Couples frequently live in a state of suspicion because they’re lacking in trust, which brings about a marital crisis. So how can this issue be resolved? Yi Xuan’s experience can show us.
- A Snowball Effect
- Suspicion Creates a Rift
- God’s Words Provide Guidance Amidst Her Suffering
- Just Say “No” to Suspiciousness
A Snowball Effect
Yi Xuan had already suffered through one failed marriage, so she had a really clear understanding of the suffering marriage can bring. She had become very cautious about affairs of the heart. She ran into Li Wei one day by chance, and since both of them were Christians, they really shared a lot in common. Li Wei’s family wasn’t terribly well-off, but he was a good person who was eager to help others, plus he didn’t care that she was a divorcee with a child. That kind of sincerity was really moving for Yi Xuan and ultimately they disregarded their family members’ attempts to interfere and ended up together after a few twists and turns. Yi Xuan felt that because she was divorced and had a child she was in a much lesser position than Li Wei and so really treasured every bit of affection he showed. She also very meticulously cared for Li Wei’s food, clothing, and home. They lived in harmony. Yi Xuan told herself that she absolutely had to hold on tight to this hard-to-come-by happiness and work hard to manage their household, to stay with her husband for a lifetime.
Several years passed in the blink of an eye. One day while Yi Xuan was straightening up clothing in the closet she found a pair of shoes that her daughter couldn’t wear and was going to throw them out. When he got back from work he saw the shoes sitting by the door and asked, “Aren’t these our daughter’s shoes? They’re so new—don’t you want them? They won’t fit you?” Busy making dinner, Yi Xuan responded, “I tried them, they’re too big. We have to get rid of them.” Looking reluctant, Li Wei picked them up and said, “Would they fit Zhang?” He said this somewhat quietly, but their daughter who was close by playing a game heard him and said with irritation, “Dad, why are you always so concerned with your apprentice, Zhang?” He couldn’t help but smile, raising his head to look at their daughter and saying, “Oh, you’re keeping an eye on your dad, hm?” Something stirred in Yi Xuan’s heart: “It’s true. Why has he been constantly talking about Zhang lately? She’s always on his mind—does he have feelings for her? No, it couldn’t be. I was the one who introduced her for that position and they already knew each other. Plus he’s a really warm-hearted person, so it’s normal for him to be caring toward her. Besides, Li Wei is also a Christian so it has to be nothing. I’m just over-thinking it.” Yi Xuan realized that she was being overly suspicious and she knew how important trust is between a husband and wife, that she shouldn’t let her imagination run wild. But what happened after that just deepened her doubts …
Over a meal one day, Li Wei said to Yi Xuan very casually, “Zhang is a really picky eater. When she eats boiled eggs she’ll only eat the white, not the yolk. She usually gives me the yolk.” When she heard this the smile froze on her face, but Li Wei didn’t seem to notice. He went on. “Zhang really relies on me at work. She calls for me the moment a problem crops up. Sometimes I can’t be bothered and don’t want to help her out, but she just keeps trying to get me to help her. It leaves me with no choice.” Jealousy surged up in Yi Xuan and she couldn’t help but think, “At home I always eat the egg white and give the yolk to my husband. How could Zhang do that too? And she’s always asking him to help her with this or that—she seems to think they’re awfully close. She’s single and her conditions are more favorable than mine, plus they see each other at work day in and day out. Are they developing feelings from their constant proximity? If this goes on will his feelings for me change? Having a mistress, one-night stands, and extramarital affairs are all so common these days. Could it be that my husband is…?” At this point she was full of worry and anxiety, and she had a bit of regret. If she hadn’t recommended Zhang for work with her husband this never would have happened. She was deeply burdened with concern.
Suspicion Creates a Rift
In an effort to defend their marriage, Yi Xuan thought of everything she could to “gather intelligence” and “observe the enemy.” She frequently looked for excuses to come into contact with Zhang and discuss work-related matters with her, hoping to get some trace of a clue from something she said. Even though she didn’t find anything out, she often bragged to Zhang about how good her husband was to her and how happy their life together was so that Zhang would beat a retreat in the face of difficulties, and not try to win his affections. All of this left Zhang feeling really awkward and constrained. Not only that, but Yi Xuan kept indicating to Li Wei in a roundabout way not to get too close to Zhang. Seeing her strange behavior, over time Li Wei started mentioning Zhang in front of his wife less often, and the once outgoing Li Wei became quiet and taciturn. But the more Li Wei behaved that way the more Yi Xuan thought that he had something to hide, and so her own doubts redoubled. She was totally preoccupied with the issue of Zhang and her husband. Sometimes in the middle of work thoughts of the two of them would spring to mind and she’d wonder if he was with her at that moment. She wondered if they were…. Dwelling on it, Yi Xuan felt that her marriage was really in danger and she even wanted to cry. She didn’t know what she should do. Everything in her personal life and work had been upended by these strange thoughts—she was in a terrible state and didn’t know what to do.
One evening after dinner, Yi Xuan realized that Li Wei had been speaking with her less and less over the past several days, and she couldn’t help but speculate. In a harsh tone of voice she said to Li Wei, “If you and Zhang continue to have this kind of work relationship, I figure nothing good can come of it!” He responded impatiently, “Don’t get carried away. There’s absolutely nothing between me and her.” But unable to hear her husband’s explanation, Yi Xuan continued to nag him. Seeing that she was becoming more and more unreasonable, Li Wei stormed out of the room. She sat next to the computer for quite a while feeling incredibly wronged and thought, “He’s really had a short temper lately. He used to always be so patient and accommodating with me in everything, but now he hardly takes notice of me. Plus I hardly said anything—how could it merit him getting so angry?” She wanted to go reason with Li Wei but then felt like it would be really awkward, so she left it alone. However, she felt an intense mix of emotions in her heart—she was really uneasy.
God’s Words Provide Guidance Amidst Her Suffering
In her helplessness and suffering, Yi Xuan made an earnest prayer to God. “Oh God! A barrier has developed between me and my husband and I don’t know how to get through it—I’m really upset. God, please guide and lead me so that I can come out from this pain.” After her prayer, Yi Xuan read these words from God: “I take pleasure in those who are not suspicious of others, and I like those who readily accept the truth; toward these two kinds of people I show great care, for in My eyes they are honest people. If you are deceitful, then you will be guarded and suspicious toward all people and matters” (“How to Know the God on Earth”). Yi Xuan understood from God’s words that He likes those who are simple and honest with others, and not suspicious of others. Those who are constantly on guard and suspicious are the deceitful ones who are detested by God. Yi Xuan thought back over this period of time. Because of her compromised position as a divorced woman with a child, while Zhang was single, young, and pretty, she felt inferior to her. On top of that, it really is an age of people having extramarital affairs and taking on mistresses, so Yi Xuan was really concerned that her husband wouldn’t be able to withstand that temptation, that he would do something untoward that would end up destroying their home. That’s why, when she heard her husband bringing up Zhang all the time and knew that they were in constant contact, that they were in close proximity, she couldn’t help but suspect that their relationship was not entirely above board. She even tried to think of every means to test the two of them, wanting to glean the truth from something they said. Even though Yi Xuan didn’t discover anything improper between the two of them, she was still dubious and kept intentionally provoking her husband in conversation, insinuating that he should stay away from Zhang. So, Yi Xuan lived every day in the midst of incredible doubt and suffering and her husband had also become taciturn and was living in pain. A once-harmonious home had lost its warmth and happiness. At this point Yi Xuan suddenly realized that the root of her and her husband’s pain had been entirely because of her own deceitfulness and suspicion. Once she had found the root of her pain her gloomy mood lifted somewhat and she no longer wanted to continue doubting her husband because of her own crafty disposition.
Yi Xuan read another passage of God’s words: “A marriage is not the product of both members’ families, the circumstances in which they grew up, their appearances, their ages, their qualities, their talents, or any other factors; rather, it arises from a shared mission and a related fate. This is the origin of marriage, a product of human fate orchestrated and arranged by the Creator” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). God’s words showed Yi Xuan that marriages come about from the fates and missions of both people, and that all of this is determined by what God has predestined and arranged. It’s not dependent on human labor or striving and it bears no relation to a person’s own living conditions or background. Yi Xuan thought back on her first marriage. Her family and friends were all very enthusiastic about it and she thought they’d have a really happy marriage. But after just a few short years, they simply couldn’t go on living together and they ended up going their separate ways. On the contrary, as for this marriage, although both of their families had strongly opposed their marriage, ultimately Yi Xuan and Li Wei ended up together. Pondering all of this, Yi Xuan deeply understood that her marriage was from God’s rule and that she didn’t have any say over how long they could last or whether he might be unfaithful, and that she had no control over it. All she could do was hand all of it over to God’s rule and submit to His orchestrations and arrangements—that’s the only way to live in a free and unrestrained way.
Yuxuan knew that she was in the wrong, and considering that Li Wei was still angry she wanted to go comfort him, but she didn’t know what to say first. A passage of God’s words came to mind, so she rushed to get her book and find it. She then read it out quietly. “For example, after living together for several years, a husband and wife will have gotten used to each other, and locked horns sometimes. But if you are both of normal humanity, you will always commune the words within your heart to him, and he to you. Whatever difficulties you have in life, the problems in your work, what you’re thinking in your heart, how you plan to sort things out, what ideas and plans you have for your children—you’ll tell him everything. In that case, aren’t the two of you especially close to each other, and especially intimate with each other? If he never tells you the words in his heart, and does nothing but bring home a paycheck, and if you never speak to him of the words in your own heart and never confide in him, then is there not a distance between the two of you in your hearts? There surely is, because you do not understand each other’s thoughts or intentions. Ultimately, you cannot tell what kind of person he is, nor can he tell what kind of person you are; you don’t understand his needs, nor does he understand your requirements. If people have no verbal or spiritual communication, there is no possibility of intimacy between them, and they can’t provide for each other or help one another” (“The Most Fundamental Practice of Being an Honest Person”). Yi Xuan gave it some deeper thought. What’s most important between husband and wife is genuinely opening up their hearts to each other—that’s the only way to achieve intimacy, closeness, and trust. Only then can they be free from suspicion and conjecture. Thinking back on all the years the two of them had lived together, although it had been harmonious without any large conflicts, communication had been lacking between them. She rarely opened up her heart to her husband and told him about what was on her mind, and she rarely knew what was really going on inside her husband’s heart. This had led to a lack of trust between them, so naturally conflict and differences emerged between them when encountering an issue, even suspicion and doubts about the other. This impacted their relationship. Just like this time—when she noticed that he was bringing up Zhang all the time, she didn’t first open her heart to him or try to understand what he was feeling, but instead lived within her cunning, corrupt disposition and doubted him. As a result, their relationship became strained. Now that she had found a path of practice within God’s words, Yi Xuan decided to tell her husband everything, to open up to him.
After saying a prayer to God, Yi Xuan mustered up her courage and went into the bedroom and said to her husband, a little embarrassed, “I’m sorry! I was just reading God’s words and only then realized how cunning I am, always doubting you. You said there was nothing between you and Zhang, but I was still worried. I was thinking that we live in such an evil society, people are having affairs and taking on mistresses all over the place. Plus I’m divorced and I have a child; Zhang’s conditions are better than mine, so I was afraid that the two of you would become closer because of your proximity and that you’d kick me to the curb. I’ve seen that I was being controlled by my cunning nature and was always suspicious of you. Not only did I suffer myself, but I hurt you as well.” Tears rolled down her face as she spoke. Seeing how Yi Xuan had opened up and come to know herself through the guidance of God’s words, Li Wei was both moved and a little reproachful of himself. His heartfelt response was: “I’m not mad at you. I’m the one who hasn’t been considerate of your feelings. Seeing you chasing the wind those few days, I thought that since there was nothing going on with Zhang I wouldn’t explain things to you. I was afraid that if I said too much your imagination would run away with you. It’s my fault too for just avoiding things and not opening up to you right away. We should have read God’s words together and sought the truth to resolve it; then this wouldn’t have been so painful for us.” He paused briefly, then said to Yi Xuan earnestly, “Our marriage is ordained by God. We came together even though it was so difficult at first—you haven’t forgotten, have you?” With tears in her eyes, Yi Xuan smiled sheepishly.
Just Say “No” to Suspiciousness
A few days later, Yi Xuan saw in an internet browser an order confirmation for something that hadn’t been shipped yet; she saw that it was a woman’s wristwatch. Her heart thudded: “My watch is in perfectly good condition and none of Li Wei’s relatives are in the area. Why is he buying a watch? It’s not for Zhang, is it?” She realized that she was doubting him because of her crafty disposition, and she thought of these words from God: “I take pleasure in those who are not suspicious of others.” She knew that God likes those who are honest, that He likes those who are not suspicious of or guarded with other people. She was clear on God’s requirements of human beings and that she should act in accordance with His words and no longer be suspicious of Li Wei. She also deeply knew that doubting him because of her cunning disposition was living within the manipulations of Satan, and it was very painful—she couldn’t continue living that way. Besides, a wristwatch couldn’t prove anything. She knew she had to trust her husband. Realizing all of this, she let go of it within her heart. Li Wei later happened to mention to Yi Xuan that Zhang’s watch had broken and she wasn’t able to buy things online, so she asked him to help order it and she paid him back. When she heard this Yi Xuan felt completely calm, and she personally experienced that living based on God’s words, free of suspicion and with more trust and understanding between them, was the only way to have a harmonious relationship. She knew all of this had been achieved through God’s words, and she silently offered up thanks and praise to God.
Now whenever Yi Xuan runs into an issue, she communicates and opens up to her husband more. She focuses on putting God’s words into practice, and there’s more warmth and comfort in her life.
After going through all of this Yi Xuan can’t help but be deeply moved. She feels that having faith is such a wonderful thing. God’s words can resolve all the difficulties in life—they’re our guiding light on the path of life! When she was living within her doubts and all that suffering, it was God’s words that guided her to find the source of her pain as well as the path to harmonious marital interactions—they brought her out of a marital crisis. Yi Xuan has also deeply experienced that the only way to live a free and easy life is to be an honest person who is simple, open, and straightforward. Thanks be to God!