On Being an Armour-Bearer

I commented a few days ago to a group of strugglers and their spouses that those of us who are spouses are “armour bearers” and affirmed how deeply this journey with our spouses affects us.  Like most of us

Suit of Armourphoto © 2007 Myrrien | more info (via: Wylio)married to strugglers, my friend has noticed how callous society is towards those who have an unwanted sexual brokenness.  It’s not that any of us strive for or desire to be broken sexually, but some embrace it.  And the world understands that – it’s the fighting against the brokenness that they don’t understand.  And they reject it, often making fun of it and of those who struggle.

It’s painful to be in a place where you watch the one you love fight and swim upstream, only to be mocked and ridiculed by voices that are loud and uncomprehending.  My friend did what any tender-hearted person would do; she removed the source of the ridicule (the world calls it “a joke,” but believe me – it’s not funny).

As spouses, we are often thrust in to situations where we must defend and protect our spouses. Sometimes it’s against family members who simply don’t understand or have bias/hatred in their hearts.  Sometimes it’s against friends who cannot accept clearly defined boundary lines or revelatory explanations.  And sometimes it’s against our rapidly-declining culture.  In the case of the latter, it often feels pervasive.  We might see or hear something in the media that mocks our journey and struggle.  We might hear someone at church or work say something like, “Oh, that’s gay!” when they really mean, “Lame!”  The words and attitudes are everywhere and even when they’re expressed in jest, they can hurt.

I wrote a while back about being my husband’s “Eowyn.”  I think all spouses, whether or not we realize it or are ready to accept it, are armour-bearers to our strugglers.  Whether they struggle with unwanted same-sex attraction or some other form of sexual brokenness, we are called to walk this out with them, courtesy of our wedding vows. This is definitely part of the “for worse” section of “for better or for worse” in our vows, and I believe God honours our commitment to our spouses.

But what does it mean to be an armour-bearer?  To me, it means that I help carry my husband’s armour when he goes in to battle with the Enemy, but I also hold up the shield and provide him a place to rest and recuperate when the battle goes long and he is wounded or not strong enough to hold up the shield on his own.  It means that I have to be prayed-up, armoured-up, and strong – because there are no time-outs in spiritual warfare.  There’s no “second string” waiting in the wings to relieve us.  It’s me (or it’s you), relying on the Lord for strength, courage, and wisdom to know how to help our spouse fight this battle.

The pressure is great and the battles are real.  Our enemy is always roaming, seeking whom he may devour, and if your spouse is struggling against sexual brokenness, the enemy’s gunning for you, because a tale of healing and God’s victory in this is a death knell to him.  If God wins in this struggle, others will break free as well – so he’s fighting us, tooth & nail.  This isn’t meant to discourage you, but rather to encourage you, because The Father has given us an unending armoury, full of weapons for this sort of warfare. But we have to be strong and willing to wield the tools He gives us, as well.  So strengthen yourself through prayer and spending time in the Word, and pick up your shields and weapons and join me. Because I’m in this battle as much as you are – and the lives of our families depend on it.

I’m including this clip from “The Return of the King” – one of the best parts of this clip is the absolute terror in eyes of the enemy troops when Theoden’s army continues on in the face of opposition.  The Enemy will come against you, but be determined and plow forward – the Enemy will cower in terror because you are accompanied by the power of God.

Go forth and fear no darkness – our God is with us!

His and his,

~Cori.

This entry was posted on 172243H Apr 2011 and is filed under Path to Healing, sexual abuse, Sexual Brokenness, SSA. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

  • http://deliberatelydeon@blogspot.com Deon

    Thanks! I WAY needed to hear this today. In the last few weeks (in the real world again) I have felt myself and my spiritual high beginning to wane more and more each week. I’m just plain TIRED of fighting. Some days it’s easier to pretend that there’s nothing to fight, nothing to guard, and nothing broken. But it doesn’t take long before something in the world intrudes and reminds me, and I sigh in frustration and hold that shield back up. You’re right…I need to gather strength from my God and quit depending on myself. That will be my plan for this week. And I’ll take it one day at a time!

  • http://www.myhearthisheart.com cori

    Hi Deon –

    I so totally get what you’re saying. Sometimes it’s so tiring and hard that pretending is the most appealing thing I can think of. But speaking as De Queen of De Nile, it never got me very far.

    There’s a really old song by Twila Paris called \The Warrior is a Child\ and there are times when it applies to me so much – sometimes I really feel like a little girl dressed up in big armour, trying to do things I’m not qualified to do. But God equips me and He’s equipping you, too.

    Hold the faith, dear friend. <3

    -cori