Feel like Giving Up on a Bad Marriage?

When you run a race, the hardest part is often when the finish line is almost in sight.

After all, you’ll be celebrating just on the other side of that tape! But in the meantime—huff, puff!—it’s downright HARD pushing past that “end-of-marathon” exhaustion and pain.

It’s the same way in life and marriage. Persevering through a dry, difficult, and discouraging season is excruciating. But to quit means losing or forfeiting the “race.”  🙁

But maybe you feel as if . . . 

[Tweet “This is not the “race” you signed up for! #discouragedinmarriage”]

As a life coach, that’s sadly something I hear a LOT! And I actually cringe inwardly every time I hear it!

Persevere in the Lord 1

Perhaps you feel like quitting would be the most humane way to handle a dysfunctional marriage for everyone involved.

Hear me weary friend! I can totally understand why you would feel that way. You just want the pain to stop!

Been there . . . felt that.

But what if what you’re really doing is making how you FEEL in this season paramount to your word, your example, and most importantly, to honoring God?

Sorry about that! Did I just hit you up side the head!

I certainly know that there are situations where this is not the only, the main, or even the true reason for throwing in the towel on a marriage. If that’s you, then please ignore my head bop! 😉

All I’m trying to say is what the word of God already says . . . at least about life.

If you are a “Christian feeling trapped in a bad marriage” (or bad life, for that matter), then realize that you actually did sign up for this—maybe not for the “bad marriage” part, but for the difficulty and pain in life.

Consider Jesus’ words,

“. . . Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” ~John 16:33b

[Tweet “Jesus gave us the bad news and good news all in one red lettered sound bite. #Jn16:33”]

The truth is, pain is a bitter pill that we all must swallow in every area of our lives, since we live in a fallen world and are dysfunctional and faulty people.

With that said, let me focus on Jesus’ “good news” for the rest of this post. 🙂

I’m a stubborn and often unyielding girl at heart—my husband will testify! But I’ve learned through the school of hard knocks, and most of all through the gentle refinement of the Holy Spirit, that surrendering to God is the best and fastest way to FEEL encouraged even in the middle of the most painful and discouraging moment in marriage/life.

Let’s refer to Jesus’ words once again . . .

“. . . ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.’” ~Mt. 16:24-25

This is another one of those bad news, good news statements from Jesus.

We cannot experience the “life”—actually Christ’s abundant life (John 10:10b)—unless we surrender our lives, as well as our desires, hopes and dreams at His feet. He then takes our brokenness and exchanges them for His forgiveness, peace, comfort and love.

Of course, surrendering doesn’t mean that God will necessarily change your spouse . . . but it does mean He will change you!

That’s because when you are surrendered to Him . . .

  • You focus on being grateful for the blessings He constantly gives, which generates contentment and joy. Just try being grateful and sad at the same time! 😉
  • Your desires change from what you can get, to what you can give out of the abundance you experience. In fact . . .
  • Your source of love and joy is found in the Lord, rather than in yourself. God’s love miraculously overflows from your heart over onto your mate. And that’s the best kind of love, because all three of you (including God) are blessed by God’s endless supply of love!

Click on the link, if you’d like to read more in this series on Persevering in the Lord.”


Can you add another blessing to my list from being surrendered to God?


What is the hardest part for you regarding persevering in your painful life/marriage?


Linking up with these fine blogs –  Making Your Home Sing, Moments of Hope, Mondays @ Soul Survival, Word of God Speak, Spiritual Sundays, Carolina @ Cisneros Cafe, Sitting Among Friends, Family, Friendship and Faith, and DanceWithJesusFriday

















  1. “But I’ve learned through the school of hard knocks, and most of all through the gentle refinement of the Holy Spirit, that surrendering to God is the best and fastest way to FEEL encouraged even in the middle of the most painful and discouraging moment in marriage/life.” I agree with you. Sometimes things are really hard, but when we surrender to God and put Him first, the problems usually can be worked out. It might not be easy, but in the end it will make us stronger and make our marriages stronger. Thanks for your insightful words. I’m your neighbor at #WordofGodSpeak. Blessings to you!

    • I agree that the problems are worked out, Gayl, but sometimes in a way that isn’t what we envision or desire until we are totally surrendered to the Lord. That’s really what I want people to grasp–as I’m sure you do! For so many the idea of surrendering to God seems abstract and something fearful, but it’s actually the best way to “feel” and “be” better. Thanks for joining the conversation and for your kind words as well, my friend!

  2. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says:

    Great post, Beth! I’m sure it’s a lifesaver for a lot of marriages, to consider things the way you do here.

    I’d add one thing; it seems to me that many marriages become ‘less than good’ not because of a fundamental incompatibility but because one or both partners gets the ‘is this all there is?’ feeling, and they think they can find the life to which they think they are entitled elsewhere.

    It’s a lie; the limitations that arise in marriage are built by two sets of hands, and trading in that second set of hands for another usually results in the same pattern. We take our dysfunctionality with us when we leave.


    • Yes, that’s so true, Andrew. I suppose my focus was not so much on the reasons we fail to persevere or surrender our hearts to God but the benefits of doing so. But a big resounding “YES” to your point. It happens to so many–the deception and ugly lie that somehow there’s something better with someone else. And like you’ve said, we only take our faulty beliefs and broken human relations with us into the next relationship–contaminating that one just as much or more than the current one! Good point, my friend.

      I hope you are doing well today! You’re in my thoughts and prayers as always. 🙂

  3. Great words today Beth! I love the idea of surrendering to God because of the freedom that we are left with instead of the heartache we so desperately hold onto. In the surrendering, we are always left with more room to focus on what is important and the truth that God teaches us. Thank you for the wisdom today! 🙂

    • That’s so true, Mary. Surrendering makes more room for God to do more in our lives than we ever imagined was possible. Thanks so much for adding to the conversation and for encouraging me, my friend!

  4. Surrender often has the connotations of weakness … but you’re showing us that strength and fortitude are the major players. Beth. And yes, faith, too.

    • Yessiree, Linda! It truly is strength–God’s strength in us when quit fighting Him and invite Him in to do the impossible in our lives. Thanks for stopping by, my friend! Hugs to you.

  5. Oh, how we fight against surrendering. But isn’t life better when we just do it? Thanks for sharing this, Beth. So true! “Surrendering to God is the best and fastest way to FEEL encouraged even in the middle of the most painful and discouraging moment in marriage/life.”

  6. Kate Baxendale says:

    How do you actually do the SURRENDERING to God?

    • One thing, Kate, might be to slowly reread the three points I made under “That’s because when you are surrendered to Him . . .” section. Put those actions into practice and you’ll begin to understand. Of course, praying that God would help you to know how to surrender and “enable you” to surrender is also another step you could take. Pray that daily and see what God does to illuminate your understanding of that very abstract step of faith.


  1. […] heart, my friend! And if you don’t know what surrendering looks like, read my last post “Feel Like Giving Up on a Bad Marriage”  that explains what surrendering involves and does for […]