I confess that there was a time when I considered divorce, and during this period of time, I separated from my husband for several months. When I look back, I cannot even believe that was actually me. Today, my desires have changed. Our marriage is in an incredible place where we can finally say that we appreciate, and enjoy one another, even in our differences.
Has our marriage taken hard work ever since then? Yes, of course. We have had to reach deeply, into a place from our own hearts to be unselfish, and consider one another above ourselves in everything we do. Unfortunately, this is a place that most marriages will never experience because they weren’t willing to let go of their selfish desires, rely on God, and put forth the effort it takes to overcome divorce.
I realized divorce is not an option for a troubled marriage. I believe in God’s position on divorce. He says, He hates divorce, so why would I want to do what God says is not right? I have known what it’s like to the feel the kind of despair that paralyzes good decision making. I’ve experienced the degree of hopelessness that causes a woman to give up on trying to do what’s right in the eyes of God. I understand the torture of loneliness that leaves you longing for anyone who will look into your soul and understand you. I have felt emotional pain so bad that it propelled me to seek an escape from the misery. I experienced the agony of what it was like to act out of desperation because I saw no hope in my future. I once built-up so many negative thoughts about my husband, my life, and my own purpose, that I convinced myself that separation and divorce were the only answer. I yearned for the promise of relief.
The biggest problem was that I was lost. I did not know who I was, what my personal beliefs and values were, and how to relate from any other place but from my own state of worthlessness. I had no idea how to communicate unselfishly, and isolation become my safety net.
Instead of admitting all of this to myself, I simply blamed my husband for the way that I was behaving. I’m not saying that my husband was without fault, but my way of handling myself was never going to resolve my troubles. As a matter of fact, my solutions only made matters far worse. Everything in my life was a mess and my family began falling apart. I lived to deny facing my own issues. Consequently, I only fell further and further into temptations that seemed to quickly sooth my wounds.
It wasn’t until I hit rock bottom that I finally cried out to the Lord, and said, “I am so sorry for all the pain that I caused my family!” I literally laid on my bed for months, just holding onto my bible. I was still struggling with an overwhelming desire to leave my husband. Once again, I did leave, but this time would be the last.
I continued to study the Bible, and I believe that God allowed me to experience what my life would be like without my husband. I finally realized I was left with nothing more but a broken family that was torn apart. What a horrible and unspeakable picture this was in my mind. Was my selfishness worth losing everything that was once precious and dear to me at the expense of my family? How would the heritage of divorce affect my daughter and son .. and generations to come? It hit me that this could not be God’s plan for us.
There, as I sat in that same old place of loneliness, God impressed upon me to lay down my life before His throne, die to my evil desire to divorce my husband, and give my needs to Him.
This was the defining moment that I discovered I had been a runner all along, but running away from addressing my own selfishness never solved any of my problems. This was the turning point when God gave me a new heart and spirit, then removed my heart of stone, and gave me a heart of flesh.
I cannot even describe the perfect love that came pouring into my soul that very moment, and the transformation that took place ever since. When I look back, I know that something evil left me that day that didn’t belong, and a profound love filled the dark, empty space that kept me from home. I felt hopeful for the first time in years!
Instantly, God gave me a vision that He would teach me how to lay down my life, and in the process would revive my marriage and family. He would pour out His blessings on all of us … and ever since then, this is exactly what He has done.