Trusting God by Trusting Your Husband

Having my sister, Candy, here for the last year and a half was like a dream come true for the Tan-Chi clan. When my bother, Peter, moved back to the Philippines with his family four years ago, we hoped that Jeff and Candy would do the same so we could all be together. 

Candy lived in the US for a good number of years after graduating from University of the Pacific in San Francisco as a dentist. (And being honored as Valedictorian, too. So proud of her! I just had to add that). She married Jeff Mc Comb shortly after, a great guy who loves the Lord. Then they settled in Sacramento, practicing dentistry and raising their three sons.

Since we are all incredibly close, it was difficult to have Candy so far away. Often, she would express to the family how she longed to come back to Manila. We would tease Jeff and attempt to convince him to move out here (but it’s not easy to leave a dental practice). 

Jeff actually invested in trips to Manila, making sure to visit with Candy and the boys. So it wasn’t like Candy vanished for the last twelve years. Jeff very generously provided for these trips which we all appreciated.

Although Candy struggled in the beginning of her marriage, wishing she was back in Manila, she surrendered this desire to the Lord. She stopped bugging Jeff about it and came to a point of contentment and peace. 

Surprisingly, three years ago, Jeff talked to her about the idea of living in the Philippines for two years. After praying about it, Jeff was convinced that spending extended time with the family in Manila and learning from the leadership of CCF (our church) was something he felt called to do. We were all shocked in a good way! 

So they planned and saved enough income to last them two years. A few months before coming to Manila, they also sold their belongings in faith, with the possibility that they may not return to Sacramento if God should lead them in that direction. 

When Jeff and Candy arrived May 2015 with their suitcase and boxes, our family was ecstatic! Since they pretty much sold all their stuff prior to coming, we hoped and prayed that their two year plan would extend to forever! 

Candy and I spent countless hours catching up and hanging out. Our kids played together whenever possible, and family dinners on Sunday night were chaotically fun. Finally, we were a complete 29. These gatherings often happened in my parents’ place, where us siblings and our spouses sat around a huge table, conversing, eating, laughing, telling stories, sharing struggles and victories, and praying together. It felt a little bit like heaven to see each person in attendance. 

Throughout the rest of Candy’s time in the Philippines, it was like I had a new friend, buddy, and confidant. We had similar perspectives on marriage, raising kids, homeschooling, ministry, etc. Where we differed we sharpened one another.

Even if she is younger, I learned a lot from her and rediscovered what a special person she is — kind, thoughtful, generous, friendly, and loving. I could be honest and vulnerable with her knowing she would set me straight if my perspective or actions were wrong. I also knew she would understand when I shared my feelings, even if they were sometimes stupid and childish. Most important of all she encouraged me to love God more. 

However, my happy bubble burst about six months ago when Candy told me that their plans had changed. After much prayer once again, Jeff decided they should return to the U.S. by August 2016, cutting short their original two year plan. He was eager to resume his practice and take back what he learned from the discipleship ministry of our church. 

Waaah!!! Why?! My heart was crushed. To be honest, this turn of events was a big disappointment. Jeff is American so I totally get that he feels called to a culture that he can better identify with. And I respect him for the way he has sought the Lord through every major decision he has made for himself and his family. He is a man who walks intimately with the Lord so I don’t doubt that God impressed this on his heart. 

But…as much as I love Jeff as a brother, a part of me felt like he was taking Candy away again, and I felt troubled. (I already confessed this to him.) Candy’s perspective silenced my negative thoughts quickly.

She said something like this, “I really want to stay but I trust Jeff. I know God speaks through Him so I will follow. If God wants us to come back in the future, it will happen.” 

Candy is an opinionated and accomplished woman. She has no problems speaking her mind or airing her thoughts. But in marriage, she has learned to speak her mind to the Lord instead of forcing her way upon Jeff. She has learned to have a spiritual perspective on circumstances rather than rely on her own logic. 

Even if I am heartbroken, I am proud of her for having the faith to declare that she trusts God by trusting in Jeff. She lived her dream for the last 18 months — being complete as a family, her kids playing and homeschooling with their cousins and building memories, vacationing, bonding, and doing ministry along side one another as siblings and with our parents, and even having the bonus of house help! Now, she must release this dream once more, and probably more tearfully too because she lived it. 

It’s easy to say we trust God when we submit to our husbands because they aren’t asking us to give up something we really want, or to do something that is difficult. But Candy taught me anew that real faith is evidenced when we can say, “Lord, not my will but yours be done. Lord, I have longings and desires but I will look to you as I obey my husband and support his leadership.” 

In a week Jeff and Candy leave. I teared several times today just thinking about it, whispering to Edric during various moments, “I feel sad…” 

I am going to miss Candy’s cheery voice at the end of the line when we phone each other during the day, the random visits and sleepovers, her big smile when she comes through a door, her beautiful spirit and ever amusing quirkiness, the joy of seeing our children play together, and sigh…just being able to be sisters and do things as sisters like I always wished we could. 

I had a piece of that these past 18 months and it hurts to let that go. Yet Candy’s faith consoles me. She is a woman who trusts God by trusting in Jeff’s leadership. Therefore I too trust that she will be blessed, that her marriage and family will be blessed.

And perhaps someday, if God should will it, we will be together like this again, and there will be no more saying goodbye because the dream will have no end. For now, I too must say, “Lord, not my will be done. I want my sister and her family to stay but you have called them back to the U.S. So I will thank you and trust you even if it pains my heart to because you are loving and good, and your will is always better…better than any dream or hope that I have.”

“But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence.” Jeremiah‬ ‭17:7‬ ‭NLT‬

Comments

  1. Thank you Joy for sharing your stories. I learned so much for every t0pic that you shared with us. God bless you and your family.

  2. I teared up too upon reaching the line “real faith is evidenced when we can say, “Lord, not my will but yours be done.” This ministered to me as I am going through something. Thank you.

    • Joy T Mendoza says:

      I hope God continues to speak to you and encourage you as you deal with what you are going through …

  3. Almira D. Ferfas says:

    Just from the title it touches my heart. I should have done it long time ago…because I didn’t know before that the husbands is the leader and we the wife is the helper. This time I will follow my husband coz I know God has a better plan. We hope and pray in Jesus name that all things will work together for good. Thank you Ms. Joy for inspiring again and adding more insights to us. God bless all your family.

  4. Anonymous says:

    This post came in perfect timing! Thank you Joy

  5. Hi Ms. Joy, thanks for sharing this. This spoke volumes to me because I lived in MNL all my life, but transferred to DC after I married since my husband’s work is there. It was a struggle and I must have roundtrip plane tickets 8-10x a year just to cope with my “loss”. I even moved back since I gave birth in MNL and raised my baby for 6 months there! Well, we were (are) still baby Christians then, so there. But now, I have learned to follow my husband’s lead. I do crave for time spent with family and friends in MNL and I could totally relate to what you said about having sleepovers with your sister, dining with your siblings and seeing the cousins play together… But the Lord’s will is to be done. It is essential to seek confirmation from Him, especially in big impact decisions. Also, I would like to think this applies too, to people who have gone before us. We wonder WHY they left and all, but it is God’s plan. We have to wait for Him and pray unceasingly for understanding and wisdom. 🙂 Thank you!

    • Joy T Mendoza says:

      Thanks for sharing your own struggles, Marge, and I am blessed by the conclusions you have come to. May God cause you to bloom wherever He leads you as you follow your husband.

  6. This spoke straight to my heart. I live in Singapore with my husband and children and it has been a struggle being away from my family. A recent development has saddened me but like you I give my full trust in the Lord that He knows best and that we will just have to trust Him. Thank you Joy for sharing your thoughts. I needed this today. God bless!

  7. mary ann reyes says:

    I was blessed by your story. Thank you for you thoughts.It impressed in my heart that to continue to trust God despite of….He know whats best for us just trust and obey.God bless!

  8. This spoke straight to my heart. My twin sister will be leaving for NY in a few weeks and this will be the first time our whole lives that we’ll be separated. But God has been teaching us to not depend on each other but only to Him. Surrendering is hard but knowing God loves her more than I do gives me courage and joy despite of the heartache and pain. Thanks for sharing.

    • Joy T Mendoza says:

      Wow that’s really tough, Ruth! That would break my heart too and I don’t even have a twin ???? May God keep you close despite the physical distance between you…

  9. Every topic that you share gave me glimpse of how I should trust God in every circumstance. Thank you Joy for your ministry. I also encourage some members of my family and friend ends to follow you in your blog, recommend it to them because it is bery helpful. God bless you Joy , your family and your ministtry.

  10. Thank you for sharing and being honest with us- your readers….no sugar coating experiences. I have learned and am learning a LOT! Praise God for your ministry Joy! I am looking forward into reading more from you. God bkess u and ur loving family and familiesss…

  11. This post touched my heart and reminded me of my own stories of struggles with submission and God’s help for us wives so that we may experience His blessings. Here’s my story: https://joyfuljoyride.wordpress.com/2016/08/10/if-i-trust-god-i-should-also-trust-my-husband/
    Blessings for you, your sister, and your whole family!

  12. Ms.Joy ang sarap pong basahin ng mga sinusulat nyo.Palagi po akong may napupulot na aral.Pwede po ba next time mag share din po kayo about quiet time.Paano po ang prayer time nyo.Gusto ko pong lumago sa area na ito.Meron din po ba kayong dry times sa prayer time nyo? Halimbawa po,na parang hindi nakikinig si Lord sa prayer nyo ng araw na yun.Wala po ako sa pilipinas kaya wala po akong mapuntahan na mga gawain dito gaya ng women to women.Salamat po

    • Joy T Mendoza says:

      Praise God. Maraming salamat 🙂 yes of course there are times when I feel down and uninspired to pray or spend time with the the Lord. But that’s why it has to be a discipline which then becomes a delight. A lot of times when I don’t feel like reading my Bible or I forget to pray it is because I am preoccupied with worldly concerns or just too busy focusing on things that don’t have eternal value. So I have to step back and ask the Lord to renew my mind and my spiritual appetite.:)

      • Wow, I need that advice. Ms.Elvie and Ms.Joy, I go through those dry times a lot, and I agree with you Ms.Joy. I guess lahat naman po tayo may ganyan. To be honest, I never had the discipline to spend quiet time consistently. It sometimes feel as if I am not even passionate about anything in life anymore. This gives me the idea to talk this througb with my small group leader. Thank you Ms.Elvie for bringing this up, and thank you Ms.Joy for answering.

  13. Thank you for sharing

  14. Thank you Joy! Your family’s love, honest struggles and heart to obey and honor the Lord is one to look up to. I wish I could be as close and bonded with my sisters (not yet born again Christians) as you are–it’s just cheesy wonderful. 🙂 This article came like an answered prayer also because just the day before this came out, I was praying that God would change my husband’s heart about taking us (me and our baby) with him out of the country for his medical training for 6 mos. Next yr. I wanted to stay with my family here and let him “focus” with his training (as my excuse). I’ve been struggling about this even at the time when I was still pregnant. And at the height of it, the next day Candy delivered her testimony. Oh God, why does it always have to be Candy? Argh! But thank you! Just thank you for reminding me big time to trust the Lord by trusting my husband. God bless and prosper you and your family more! 🙂

  15. This happened to me when my trysted helper had to leave. She’s taken care of me since I was young. My parents chose to let her stay with me when we couldn’t find a suitable helper when I gave birth. I cried a lot but in the end God helped
    Me grow without her. We spend time apart to grow and then share life again together in moments. I trust God in the end will make us
    most satisfied just being with Him and trusting Him. Truly God is all we need but there will be tears because we love but take heart because God is in the business of making it work for His glory. Thanls for sharing. I always pray for your family.

  16. Oh Joy, I understand how you feel, I lost my sister & best friend’s physical companionship to geography a few years back, and like Candy, she returned with her family. Now they have discussions of leaving again and it makes me sad. I always try to remember, God’s will over self-will, but somehow, with this particular situation, it takes me longer to submit. At the end of it all, God has given each of us our priorities. It’s also a struggle for me, learning to trust God through my husband. It’s journey for me, but so far, God has been true. After much struggle with my limited understanding, I return to the assurance that His will is perfect. I also want to take time reflecting on how I can have the eagerness and peace to submit in spite of position or accomplishments. My submission is visible and can be noticed, but the submission is at the surface, only on paper, while my heart often remains in rebellion. You mentioned that Candy is able to be accomplished yet submit easily to her husband. That Candy can say and do this without frustration, hesitation or a struggle is also inspiring, praying that this will be something I can draw from during my prayers and quiet time. Would like to encourage you and your ministry. I am one of many who have been touched many times over through your blog. God has sent me much perspective through several of your posts. I will be praying for your ministry, that it gain even more momentum. And praying for you family, may you all stay humble, and be blessed in even more abundance as you continue to inspire many to set their eyes on Him.

  17. Hi Joy, have you ever thought you heard from God but turned out you didn’t bec what you were praying and hoping for did not turn out as you expected? Then how does one truly hear from Him? Thanks!

  18. This tears me up. But God is so good. We may not see but He sees us through eternity. Love you Joy!

  19. Ms.Joy, I appreciate this article. 🙂 I agree to everything you say here. Real trust in God is trusting Him even if it seems as if it doesn’t make sense. Sometimes I just find it hard to trust God by trusting my husband when I don’t see him readhis bible or even pray — you know, when I see him preoccupied about a lot of other things (most of them don’t even have anything to do with our family life). But maybe that’s an even greater evidence of trust (and an even greater privilege, too.)

  20. Hi Joy!
    Just last night i was asking God… why?
    I just couldnt understand my husband in my own practical mind. I felt like why i couldnt speak my mind? Do i just always say Yes to him? And just follow? Or was he insecure? I was so… inis, i must say.
    But just like what you shared that it is God’s will to follow our husband’s leading. Its soo hard joy. And I cry every time I have to give up my ways, & embrace every day His will for us.
    Thank you for the reminder & encouragement, Joy. GOD bless your family.

  21. Praise God for you, Ms.Joy! I’ve been following your blog for years now and God has used your blog many times to minister to me. Thank you for inspiring me to obey God as I strive to be a godly woman (only by His grace). I’m getting married in a month and the journey is not without difficulty. Thanks for the reminder that I need to set aside what I want for myself and to trust in the Lord.

    May God bless you, your family, and your ministry more and more! <3

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