When did it happen? When did I quit loving my life? When did I come to the point that I had had enough and wanted to be away from rodeo? What has happened to me, to my husband, to my marriage?
In the beginning, we are excited to get our cards and try our hand at the world of competition in the big leagues. We are lured in by the challenge and glamor of rodeo. We women love the rugged manliness of cowboys and eagerly take on this life. After we have been in the PRCA for a while it gets harder and harder. The sacrifices and the weariness of the life on the road seem harder each year. For the wife, it becomes very weary because it seems as though it is all about your husband and we feel neglected, used, and unappreciated! It is not always just a feeling, unfortunately it can be true. The competing husband can become so focused on winning in the arena, that he doesn’t realize his family’s needs. Both husband and wife can become quiet self centered!
GOD, OUR SPOUSE, OR RODEO IS NOT OUR ENEMY!
Rodeo couples don’t go into their lives together wanting them to fail. In fact, most of my acquaintances with rodeo people are hard working, success oriented people. They love a challenge and are willing to work long hard hours in the practice pen to be good at their event. The wives start out totally devoted to helping their husband to be the best they can be.
So what happens?
God has a plan, but we also have an enemy, the devil, that wants to destroy that plan. And then there is this thing the Bible calls our flesh. That is our inner self that wants all of life to be all about me. Our flesh screams for attention, comfort, adoration, and a whole lot more. The devil encourages our flesh to live against God’s plan. We don’t realize it, just thinking that ‘if it feels good do it.”
We begin thinking our enemy is rodeo or our mate when in actuality our enemy is the devil who has lured us into believing our lives are miserable.
The devil encourages us every day to focus on ourselves. Becoming consumed with “it’s all about me” is sin. The devil tempts us to sin, because it is destructive. The devil tempts and we act on it, believe it, and want it our way.
Striving for perfection and success can wear out an entire family! It is easy for our flesh to be tempted to strive. The enemy encourages this in our lives at every turn. It is so subtle we don’t realize it. Striving can eventually cause us to feel we are failures. When controlled by strife, there is never enough, we always need to do more, to be better.
Besides encouraging us to strive, the devil has another tactic to destroy us. In the Bible he is called the accuser of the brethren. He will either accuse you of your own faults, your husband’s faults, or all the unfair things in your life. When we believe what he says and dwell on these things, we then have critical spirits. Nothing in life is ever right. We become miserable because of this sin.
Let me be clear, most of our battles with the devil occur in our mind. The devil is real and he is really deceptive and determined to destroy each of our lives. He has been winning in the world of cowboys. It breaks my heart to see marriage after marriage falling apart.
The devil is subtle in his attack on rodeo marriages, sometimes taking about ten years before he gets them destroyed. The enemy works in each of our minds, slowly wearing us down and brain washing us. Like a tape recorder going on and on in our heads, he just keeps telling us how bad rodeo is and how bad our husbands treat us. We start questioning, “When is it going to be about me?” After a time we start believing and acting on these thoughts. When the enemy sees each of us wearing down, he comes in for the kill—to kill your marriage. He comes in like a flood and we each are filled with a desperate feeling and want to get away. We think rodeo is our horrible enemy and anywhere but at a rodeo is where we need to be. We flee to where we think we will be safe. The devil has now got the husband and wife separated. Each start going their own way. They have become critical of each other and the devil now sends in other people that look better than their mates. For the wife at home, the new guy seems to really care and is so attentive. He makes her feel good. For the husband on the road, the new girl is so much fun, she laughs and thinks he is so macho. She makes him feel good. The end is very near!
Only God knows what shape your marriage is in. Only God knows how to fix it. Only the power of the name of Jesus Christ and the power of the blood of Jesus Christ can defeat the enemy in our lives. Now is the time to recognize our foe and turn to God with all of our heart and fight the real fight. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil and with Jesus as the Commander of the Army we will win against the devil. Jesus promises that we can win this battle of life. We must learn what God says in the Bible and believe it. We must obey what God tells us. We must believe that He will help, enable, and encourage us by the power of the Holy Spirit working inside of us. God wants to fight for us in this spiritual battle. God wants our marriages to work. He wants to bless us and our children. We cannot change our husbands! We can only change ourselves! We must humbly repent of our sins and ask God to make us, the wife, the obedient women He wants us to be. We then must wait and let God work in our husband’s hearts, to change them too.