Filtering {separating and starting new}

Almost two years ago a friend gave me a profound word.

Coffee depletes the vitamins and minerals in our bodies and often leaves you feeling more tired than before you had a cup.  It can leave you feeling achy and dehydrated too.  And people are sometimes like coffee… I think Holy Spirit is placing a filter in your life to filter out the people that leave you depleted, and dehydrated.

Looking back I see more clearly what she was talking about.  And what the Holy Spirit has been doing in my life.

A year ago my husband and I were in a very different place… we were very different people.

We were in a major split.

Not the kind that you might be thinking… We were splitting up with our old selves.

At the time, I don’t think we knew what we were doing.  We had just had some major relationship issues in relationships outside of our marriage.  These outside relationships caused so much drama in our life that when we walked away from them, we were left in a calm that allowed us to look at each other and ask ourselves some tough questions.

It was painful.  It was hard.  We both grieved the different aspects of those relationships we let go of… and what we were trying to grasp hold of wasn’t easy to wrap our fingers around.  We had to fight.  Together.

We spent months of conversations sorting out why we felt so disconnected and distant.  We spent months of time in our separate prayer closets seeking answers that only God could shed light on.  And through these months, we are emerging as completely different people… united and revived in our original goals and purpose.

I’d love to say we are living our dreams come true now!  Ha! But, nope… we are still a work in progress.  We are still learning to fight together for what we committed our lives to.  For better and for worse… in richness and in poorness {is that even a word?}… in sickness and in health.

What we had to work on wasn’t caused by the people in our life that we walked away from.  But, we had to walk out of some relationships in order to focus on the one relationship that we’d both agreed would be our priority.

The thing is, the relationships we walked out of were not motivated by connection, but rather driven by fear.  The results of these relationships was division rather than unity.  There were characteristics and features of those relationships that did not align with our original intent as a married couple; what we wanted and had dreamed of for our family.

Once we identified that, we had a choice.

Pursue our commitment to each other as we had vowed to do in this life… or remain in relationships that allowed us to hide from ourselves and our commitment to each other.

Change is a risk.  Letting go doesn’t mean there will be something, or someone, else to grab hold of.  And often our current circumstances have to become so unbearable that the pain of staying the same is deeper than the fear of change, before we want to take that risk.  But we will never be free to grab hold of something new until we let go of what isn’t working.

Looking back, I am amazed.  Filtering out relationships that depleted the necessary resources I needed to have in order to look myself in the mirror and agree with my Maker about who I am… and to look at my husband and agree with his Maker about who he is… filtering out relationships that took away from my peace, my unity with my husband, my joy in the family God has given me, that was the best risk I have ever taken.

Where the Holy Spirit filtered out relationships that depleted us, He also filtered in relationships that refreshed us.

We let go of relationships riddled with fear, control and division.

He introduced relationships filled with love, freedom and unity.

My husband’s take on it all?

I chose you. I still choose you.  You first, before anyone else. We know so many people who are separated or getting divorced and trying to get it right with someone else.  I think we need to”divorce” and let everything crummy in our relationship die and be buried.  I think we need to start over again too,  fall in love again, and get to know each other as we are now, and get “remarried” to each other.  I want to remarry you.  Everytime.” 100_4623

Be careful who you listen to.  Take the measure of their words by the fruit of their most intimate relationships, for who you listen to you emulate.  Whom you live around you become.


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