We were three weeks and two days away from getting married. Peter’s parents were flying in from Cambodia the next day. Which meant we were really close to getting married! As I began my day I read the SheReadsTruth devotional for the day just like any other day. I had no idea that the main verse of the devotional that day would be so impactful in my day.
Matthew 5:44: love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
I left for work just like any other day and began advising students at orientation. In between students I briefly checked my phone to see if Peter had arrived in Portland. He had, but the message he sent regarding his no longer being employed was not what either of us were expecting that day.
So what should you do if your significant other loses their job? I have 5 tips for you today.
As soon as Peter told me the news I messaged some of my closest friends and asked for them to pray. I didn’t have the strength to pray at that point. I had to advise the next student. In between appointments words of encouragement and prayer for Peter and I flooded in from my friends. A couple hours later as I was walking on campus I finally had the strength to begin praying. I prayed that God would keep Peter and I strong and positive throughout the process.
2. Be supportive
Be supportive, but don’t be afraid to cry. I hadn’t processed my emotions as much as I thought. That night, Peter and one of my friends arrived on my doorstep at exactly the same time. I opened the door and immediately started crying (definitely wasn’t planning that). It showed that I cared and was real. As one of my friends said, “the most amazing gift you can give your husband/fiancé in a situation like this, is being a non-anxious presence and showing you trust him, and not trying to solve it for him, but almost backing off and letting him be the man. It gives them the guts and help to look to God for help.” Be there to listen and dream and ask the deep questions and show love.
3. Friends are there to support you.
Throughout this I learned that friends truly are there to support you. You can’t do this on your own. You can try to, but it just isn’t healthy. Grab a Ben and Jerry’s pint of ice cream and head to the deck and be vulnerable and real about your thoughts and feelings. Some of them you probably wouldn’t want to share with your soon-to-be-husband anyways.
4. Celebrate the little things.
I’m big on celebrating (read more) even amongst trials. If you’ve planned things with friends before you knew this season was about to happen don’t cancel your plans. Celebrate the little things together and with your friends. For example: have frozen yogurt with friends, have a game night with friends. Just don’t sit and wallow for long, it’s not good for you or your fiancé/husband.
5. Most importantly, lean on God.
The most important thing you can do is to keep God as number one. God is the ultimate provider and you just have to continue to trust that He will bring the right thing along. That doesn’t mean you just sit and wait. You have to take action and start somewhere.
Want to see your true colors come out? Have your fiancé lose his job before your wedding and it will truly show your character. It will show how much you truly care about him. It will show if you’re truly in it for the long haul. It will show you how much you’ve grown over your relationship. As another friend stated, “I also think that there is another truth: that you are marrying the love of your life, which brings a lot of joy. However, there are things that will be extremely difficult during marriage. The hardships do not necessarily stop.” This is isn’t our first trial and it will not be our last. We have to keep pressing on. And we will.
Throughout this adventure I’ve learned that I’ve grown a lot over the course of our relationship. As Peter said during this process I have been “authentic, vulnerable, courageous, and faithful.” You can allow a situation to be bad and just be bad or you can allow God to do good and use the situation to grow.
Peter’s one of those guys who doesn’t like to be bored. He’s now employed again and working on some new iPhone Apps.