What If My Marriage Interferes with My Calling?

Jen Jabbour

Contributing Writer
Updated Jul 19, 2024
What If My Marriage Interferes with My Calling?

Let’s remember to be patient with our spouses if they don’t jump up and down in excitement right away. If it is God’s plan, He will enlighten them in His timing.

There may come a day in your marriage when you and your spouse disagree on something you feel passionate about. In fact, you may even believe God has called you to do something, yet your spouse doesn’t readily agree.

I often find myself asking God to reveal the same vision to my husband if it is truly the direction He wants me to go. I don't know how many times I have flat-out told God that if He’s calling me to step forward in faith, I'll need my husband to take the trip with me.

I'd love to be a fly on the wall when Noah told his wife that he was building a giant boat in the middle of the wilderness where there wasn’t any water. The Bible doesn't give us insight into how that conversation went. Or what about when God told Abraham to take his son to the top of the mountain to be sacrificed? If I were Abraham, I might have kept that one to myself. I certainly would’ve begged and pleaded with my husband and, in fact, I probably would have called the cops to report that he’d gone crazy. 

If you consider all the power couples of the Bible, you will see that they all have this one thing in common: both spouses, husband and wife, trusted and obeyed God (Mary and Joseph, Ruth and Boaz, Priscilla and Aquilla, etc.). 

In the stories where we aren't given the details of the other spouse's thoughts and feelings, like Noah's and Abraham's, I assume it's because each couple was united in their relationship with God, and each trusted the other within that triune relationship. 

I trust my husband to make important decisions through the filter of his faith. He has a deep reverence and respect for God and, as head of our home, feels God will hold him accountable for the decisions he makes for our family. Because I know my husband desires to trust and obey God, I submit to his authority, knowing that he answers to God.

I will say that it’s exhilarating when you think you’ve heard from God. Yet, as excited as I get in these moments, I also feel uncertain. My internal voices reason, “What if my husband doesn’t see the vision? What if he doesn’t see the point, the value, and shuts it down before it even starts? What if he interferes with my calling?”

Friend, let me tell you this: These types of conversations didn’t go well in our early years. Neither one of us had the maturity or insight to prevent any conflict from turning into a fight. We weren’t perfect humans and we brought our brokenness into our marriage. Thankfully, as we continued to center our relationship around God, we found a perfect rhythm of grace and discovered the space to seek God’s will in our lives not just as a couple but also as individuals. 

Getting on the same page is so much easier if we are equally yoked. It starts by marrying someone who, like you, trusts and obeys God and keeps Him at the center of their life. However, if you’re reading this, chances are, you’re beyond those days. If you married someone with different beliefs than you, or you found God after marriage but your spouse has not, take heart. The encouragement and Bible-based recommendations that have worked for me still apply to you. In fact, even in our singleness, the same principles apply.

If you feel God is calling you to something but your spouse isn’t as eager about it, rather than seeing them as a hindrance, I urge you to choose to look beyond the vision. Consider that it may be more about the journey than the destination. Remember, God works all things together according to His purpose, for the good of others and the glory of God (Romans 8:28).

When you believe God has placed a calling on your heart but you require further confirmation from God and the person you do life with, here are four principles to follow:

1. Always Pray About It

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (ESV)

As I share each principle, you’ll see that prayer weaves throughout each of them. Prayer is the most important thing and the very first thing we should do anytime we are looking for guidance, direction, and support. Before I go to my husband with anything important, like a difficult decision, I pray about it.

I start by praying for myself—I ask God to give me the wisdom, the right words to speak, the understanding, the patience, a listening heart, and the confidence I need when I approach my spouse. 

Then I pray for my husband—I ask God to prepare his heart for what I’m going to tell him. I ask God that if it be his will, my husband be receptive and open. I tell God that if this is something I am to do, I need my husband to be part of it, not just aware of it. God knows my heart and knows that to honor Him, I must also honor my husband. 

I don’t believe that God will actually have us do something that could harm our marriage, and that is why I’m so adamant about praying in this way. Absolute refusal on my husband’s part either means it’s not a direction we should go, or my husband hasn’t heard from the Lord just yet.

2. Be Patient 

Typically, we don’t come to a final answer in just one conversation. Usually, we make a list of questions to research, weigh the pros and cons, and continue to pray. One of the best answers I can receive from my husband is that he is seeking God’s will through prayer and reading the Bible. I find great comfort in knowing he has taken it to God.

I’m often reminded of how the angel first went to Mary to tell her she was carrying the Son of God. The calling and the vision were revealed to Mary, then to Joseph, and, at first, Joseph was not on board. It took prayer and patience on Mary’s part. God intervened by sending His angel to reassure Joseph that everything would be okay. God had a plan and purpose, and He had chosen them to be a part of it!

Let’s remember to be patient with our spouses if they don’t jump up and down in excitement right away. If it is God’s plan, He will enlighten them in His timing.

3. Look to the Scripture for Answers

In addition to prayer, I turn to the Bible, asking God to lead me in the way I should go, whether it’s in deciding what to do or how to approach the situation.

Just because I get the urge to take up a new course in life doesn't necessarily mean it’s from God. We make a lot of plans that aren’t ordered by God in any way, shape, or form. I’ve learned to say, “I think this is what God wants me to do.” Even if I truly believe that God is leading me in a certain direction, I am reluctant to say with absolute conviction that God told me to do it. My human heart is weak, easily swayed, and oh, so naive. 

To be sure it was God’s voice that I heard, I fervently pray for God to give me the discernment to know what I’m supposed to do, to determine if the desires of my heart are from Him, or if they are from my worldly passions or the desire to please others. It is often in the scriptures that God speaks to me. 

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.”  2 Timothy 3:16

4. Do Not Sin

This is not the time to allow the enemy to creep in and tempt you to sin in your marriage. 1 Peter 5:8-9 warns us, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.”

If your desires are truly from God, then sin has no place. Be aware that the enemy will use anything to cause us to stumble—even something good—if he thinks he can get away with it.

As you seek God’s will in your marriage and your callings, stand guard against the devil’s evil schemes (Ephesians 4:27). Always seek God first, and don’t allow your human heart to be led astray. Be careful to not allow something good to be defiled by the “root of bitterness” (Hebrews 12:15 ESV).

And as with any conversation, especially in our marriages, the following passage should be kept at the forefront of our minds:

“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” James 1:19-20 (ESV)

Related Podcast: As couples, sometimes, it’s easy for us to assume our way is the right way and seek to change each other. In this episode, we discuss 2 practical ways to honor God with your responses.

Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/Ridofranz

Jennifer Jabbour resides in the scenic San Diego countryside with her husband, adult son, and teen daughter, and their hilarious English Bulldog. Jennifer has a B.A. in Integrated Business Communications, and is a Go + Tell Gals licensed life coach. Jennifer hopes to use her calling of writing, coaching, and speaking to equip and empower women to clarify their vision and to boldly step forward in response to God's calling on their life, as well as educate and encourage others to experience the abundance of God's goodness when they seek Him first in all that they do. Jennifer is also a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a photographer, and an avid outdoors-woman. She loves camping, hiking, running, and playing the piano in her free time.

You can keep up with Jennifer on her website https://www.jenniferjabbour.com.