Emptied: Experiencing the Fullness of a Poured-Out Marriage by Wynter Pitts, Jonathan Pitts
For a Marriage That Brims Over
Maybe you entered marriage with some pretty high expectations—most couples do. Jonathan and Wynter Pitts did. Until the reality of married life spilled into their expectations.
Jonathan and Wynter invite you on a journey to explore a different approach to
your happily-ever-after marriage. Join them for an honest look at the lessons
learned as they navigated the ups and downs of early marriage while raising
Here you will...
Emptied is a way of life. It’s not about trying harder, it’s about
thinking differently. Only when you are emptied of your own self-focused
motivations can God pour new life into you for the abundant marriage and
satisfying relationship you long for. Are you ready to approach your marriage
poured out, ready to be filled up?
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I enjoyed reading Emptied because the couple was very transparent about their lives. It made me realize that I'm not weird or abnormal. The struggles of marriage, while they differ per couple, have enough common ground so we can learn from each other. I also felt a measure of sadness while reading Emptied knowing that Jonathan Pitts has to go through the launch of this work after the death of his wife and co-author. It made me remember that life is short and every moment we have with our partner is one to be cherished.
Know God - the primary theme of Emptied is that we need to imitate Jesus by emptying our marriage of self. The expectations that we came into the marriage with may not fully align with the vision God has for marriage in general or our marriage in particular. We have to empty our pre-marriage identity at the foot of the cross in order to be made over into the image and identity God intends for us through marriage.
Know yourself – In Emptied, both Wynter and Jonathan spoke frankly about the habits and traits (fruit) they brought into their marriage. Without knowledge of self, they wouldn't have been able to do that. By their example, we are encouraged to take inventory of the fruit we bring in into our own marriages. Only then will we be able to truly empty ourselves for the benefit of our partner.
Run your race - God has a unique plan for each of us. He has a unique plan for every marriage. We are not going to accomplish that unique purpose by doing what everyone else does. We have to tap into the blueprint that God has for our marriage to become the best spouse we can be.
Just like Esther, our fairy-tale-like ending is waiting for us to throw ourselves at the feet of God. Our arc hits its climax when we make a conscious decision to submit our greatest fears, worries, problems, and the evil stored up in our hearts (Luke 6: 45), and to throw those things at the very feet of a God who is willing to step in.
Remembering that God is willing to help us in our marriage is priceless. It means we're never alone no matter what the enemy tells us.
He is calling us to die to anything and everything that is not of His Spirit and to whatever keeps His Spirit from growing inside of us.
This means giving up our identity which initially seems scary and daunting. Until we realize the identity we have in Christ is far superior to the one we had before Him.
What all three of these authors [Peter, Paul and James]
and disciples of Jesus are saying is that when we receive Jesus, we receive His
word. We also receive His Spirit. But we receive it in seed form. As we live in
Him and trust Him more, His Spirit grows more and more inside us.
I love this imagery. It means the Holy Spirit is present in each of us the minute we accept Jesus as Savior. The strength and power of the Spirit in our lives depend on how we nurture it.
I recently tried growing tomatoes. At first, I would forget to water it (thank God for my husband and son who rescued the poor plant from my forgetfulness). But when I started seeing green, I became invested in the survival of the plant. I would water or ask my son to water it daily. The same will happen with the Holy Spirit. When we are invested in seeing His manifestation in our lives, we will take greater effort to nurture our relationship with Him.
The emptier we become of the sin and barriers that hinder us on the race, and the fuller we become with His Spirit, the closer we get to the prize promised in God’s presence—joy.
Isn’t that an awesome promise? I want to experience joy in this world and the next.
Mistakes, history, expectations—these are three realities we all bring into our marriage relationship that can quickly crush our dreams.
Yes, too many of us go into marriage thinking we're going to have a fairytale ending. We don't realize a marriage is hard work. We first have to deal with our expectations, then our partners. Only then will we will be able have the marriage God intended for us.
Something beautiful happens when you begin to see the beauty in your spouse, when you no longer see their differences as threats to your well-being, but as enhancements to your life, and when you begin to see their story as a work of God and a perfect picture of grace. In our marriages, God is calling each of us to imitate Him— to follow Jesus— in all His grace, mercy, and compassion. He looks at each of us, seeing the entirety of our background— the good, bad, and ugly— and still offers us hope and ultimately redemption as we trust in Him.
When we adapt our new identity in Christ, we also become new persons in our marriages. We are no longer serving ourselves. Instead, we empty ourselves for the service of our spouses. This emptying of self allows us to appreciate our partners the way they are instead of wishing for them to be someone else.
The more you come to understand His heart for you, the more you’ll fall in love with Him. The more you can comprehend His mind-set, the more you’ll realize the depths He was willing to go to reveal His love.
It’s amazing how God loves us. His concern for us pervades every single aspect of our lives, including our marriages.
Have you read Emptied by Wynter and Jonathan Pitts? What was your favorite part? I received a copy of Emptied from NetGalley through their review portal, all opinions are mine.
Purchase your copy of Emptied on Amazon.
Wynter Pitts was the author of several books, including You’re God’s Girl! She was the founder of For Girls Like You, a ministry that equips girls to walk boldly into who God has created them to be and to resource their parents to raise strong Christ following God girls that say yes to His plans for their lives. She lived in Dallas, Texas, with her husband, Jonathan, and their four daughters.
Jonathan Pitts is an author, speaker, and the Executive Director of the popular Christian broadcast ministry The Urban Alternative founded by Dr. Tony Evans. Jonathan lives in Dallas, Texas, with his wife, Wynter, and their four daughters.