More than 20 years ago, I sensed God was asking me to do something that seemed very risky but also very right. I learned that one of the most powerful ways I can honor my husband is to share his dreams.
David had accepted an invitation from a missions organization called Serving in Mission (SIM ) to go to Ethiopia to speak at a conference for thousands of believers there. It would be his first time traveling to that part of the world, and the invitation came on the heels of Ethiopia’s long and brutal civil war.
The country was not yet stable or even considered safe for international travelers. I had been wrestling through an intense spiritual struggle for several weeks and had finally come to terms with letting David go.
It was a conversation with a friend from church that first sparked my idea of going with David. JoAnn and her husband, Howard, had served as missionaries in Africa for years and were now leaders with SIM. “David’s life is going to be dramatically changed by this trip,” JoAnn said. She paused, then looked at me and said, “I don’t know if you could possibly go. But it would be so powerful for you to experience this with David so you can share his dreams for Africa and be part of what God will do in this church.”
I couldn’t shake her words.
But our children seemed so young—barely seven and three. How could I possibly leave them?
“God,” I prayed, “if You are calling me to go with David to Africa, You will have to be really clear. Someone will have to offer to keep our children—without my asking.” An unlikely prayer, since few knew about the trip.
The following Sunday, a dear friend came up to me and said, “I don’t know if you’ve considered going with David. But, if you do, I’d like to keep Bethany and DB.” Later, my dad called out of the blue and said, “If you’re thinking about going with David, your mother and I would like to help with the children.” So we had not one, but two sets of sitters to care for our children.
I was still a little anxious. I felt like Gideon as I asked God for further confirmation.
Soon after, during my morning quiet time, my eyes fell upon these verses:
If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast (Psalm 139:9-10).
Peace filled my heart as I reflected on the words.
Later, while heading to my car, I happened to notice a small bookmark lying face-down on my garage floor. I picked it up and stood transfixed as I read the verses, the exact words which I had been pondering.
And so, I said yes to God.
A short time later, I would find myself looking into the faces of thousands of Ethiopian believers lined up in tight rows, seated on the hillside at the Wolaita Conference. I was overwhelmed by the vibrant joy of a people who had suffered so much for their faith.
Next to getting married and giving birth to our three children, this journey to Ethiopia ranks as one of the most magical blessings in my life. I discovered that when David and I dream big together, we’re likely to embark on unexpected and life-changing adventures.
The bottom line is this: Our dreams matter to God. Dreams can connect us to our life’s calling and motivate us to grow in our faith. And when we dare to dream together with our husbands, we strengthen our marriage bond.
Read about seven other powerful ways you can show your husband you love him in Eight Great Ways to Honor Your Husband.