Story #9: “For Better, For Worse” – Chad & Angie Classen

Chad and Angie have an amazing story and marriage. We are honored to be able to share it today.

For better or for worse. Sometimes these two come so closely knit together that you think you are entering the better season and end up in the worse season instead. This happened for us in the 8th year of our marriage. We had saved our pennies and were finally buying the house we planned to raise our growing family in for the next decade or more. Little did we know that just three days after closing on our dream home, a neighbor would inform us that unbeknownst to us, we had actually bought a former drug lab that was still contaminated and dangerous. 

That day began a period of intense testing of not only our trust in God, but also our trust in each other. Suddenly homeless, with two young children, we had to make some big decisions with little time or assurance that anything would work out in our favor. The crippling stress, the disbelief that something like this could happen to us, and the feelings of desperation that our financial future might be tied up in an uninhabitable home, all came together to birth anger, outrage, and fear in us. We were so overwhelmed and could have easily turned on each other in the middle of the crisis. But it was during this time that God also birthed something else in our hearts; the passage in James that says our trials can be an opportunity for great joy. And within a few months, we saw that play out in our lives. Not only was everything redeemed financially, but we saw God show up for us in a tangible way that we had never experienced in our marriage up until that point. Our greatest fears came upon us, but God delivered us out of them all. #love #marriage

The worse season caused us to examine a lot in our marriage. We learned how we handled stress as a couple (not well!), how we made life-changing decisions when we had no assurance of the outcome, and how to stay united in the face of fear. And we would learn, and are still learning in the 4 years that followed that time, that we would face even worse things than this. Yet the trial marked a significant change for us. It became a stone of remembrance that we still point back to again and again to recall God’s faithfulness to us, and out commitment to walk together through anything. And now, as we walk through the better and the worse times, we turn to the scripture mounted on our wall and quote James 1:2-4, “When troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for GREAT joy!” For now we know that the better can often come in the middle of the worse.