Today I’m pleased to welcome author and speaker Dineen Miller to my blog. When my husband and I started dating, he was Catholic and I was Lutheran. We spent a lot of time during our first dates (and even before then) talking about the differences in our faiths and what this meant for our relationship. In the end, I joined the Catholic Church just before our wedding, but we have many friends who remain spiritually disconnected, as Dineen talks about here.
One night I watched this clip during an episode of The Big Bang theory with my husband, who I call my lovable, techy geek. If you’re familiar with this show, my guy is a combination of Sheldon and Leonard and Silicon Valley is his stomping ground—a world defined by scientific fact and computers. It’s who he is.
As this scene ended, I burst out in laughter and said, “Wow, you can be scientifically mismatched too!”
We are a spiritually mismatched couple. I believe there is a mighty God—Abba, King Jesus, Holy Spirit—a Creator and Controller of the Universe. My husband does not. Thus we have a spiritual disconnect.
And watching this scene was like seeing a portrayal of a mismatched couple. The character Leslie asks, “How will we raise the children?” It is the same question asked in a spiritually mismatched marriage. What will the children be taught about God when two parents have such vast beliefs of the very definition of life?
The reality is, both parents have “equal right” to share their beliefs with their children. The key is doing it respectfully of each other—and to trust God. Not an easy challenge but one that is crucial not only to our children but also to the unbelieving spouse, who I prefer to call a pre-believer. In a mismatched marriage, our actions speak so much louder than our words.
Like Leonard suggests, my husband and I agreed I could take them to church as long as they would be allowed to freely make their own choice when they were old enough. I agreed and kept my word, as did my husband. I trusted my God to be faithful and He was. Both my girls accepted Jesus at a young age and have embraced their own faith walk as adults.
I believe this is at the heart of our instruction in the Bible not to be unequally yoked. There is no way to find a meeting in the middle of two beliefs that contradict each other at such a foundational level. God can’t exist half way. But no matter how we wind up mismatched, Abba’s heart is for all to know Him. And He is most faithful to a mother’s prayers.
Dineen Miller is passionate about God’s Word and truth. She’s been featured on the Moody Radio Network, Focus on the Family, Dr. James Dobson’s FamilyTalk and FamilyLife Today. Dineen lives in the Bay Area with her family and is the coauthor of the award winning book, Winning Him Without Words and Not Alone: Trusting God to Raise Godly Kids in a Spiritually Mismatched Home. She is also the author of the ACFW Carol Award winning book, The Soul Saver. Visit Dineen online at Mismatched and Thriving.
In Not Alone you’ll find encouragement and inspiration from Scripture and true-life stories from other spiritually mismatched moms. Plus, find practical tips for capturing teachable moments with eternity in mind, and discovery questions to help you grow as a parent. You may sometimes feel you’re on your own when it comes to godly parenting, but Jesus promised to be with you always. You’re not alone!