This is hard stuff.
It seems that every circle I am in, someone’s marriage is in a slow crumble. Every. Circle.
Some married for a short time, others for years. Some without children, others with kids. Some young, some older.
When we are preparing to marry we dream BIG!!
Those dreams can begin to play out in our minds like a film. The engagement period where we are eager to show everyone our shiny ring and the wedding planning begins. The day comes, vows are exchanged in front of God and witnesses and before you know it, the week is over and it’s back to reality. Most women I know are planning out the next phase and then the next of life in their little family (because women are planners you know!).
The hum drum of life sets in and the daily routine rocks along.
This is where the mystery begins.
I’ve never been in these shoes, but I know many who have. Unhappiness, discontent, anxiousness…shock, unbelief, helplessness…panic, fear, worry…anger and hurt…loneliness.
The dreams dreamed years before don’t just disappear. They’re still there. Only now, they’re not in color, they’re in black and white. There’s no life left in them when the reality of what is happening sets in.
When I hear of another friend whose conversations with their spouse now include the “D” word, my heart sinks. It’s like when someone dies and there just aren’t words. Only hugs.
Divorce is a death.
It’s the passing of a dream, shared goals and the most important relationship in someone’s life. Feelings of denial, anger, sadness and eventually acceptance pass through. It demands to be mourned just like any other great loss in our lives.
When the marriage ship has crashed into the rocks and is splintering into a million pieces, most don’t want to hear “God has a plan” or “hold tight to Jesus”.
It’s not for pity sake. It’s a genuine expression that I’m sorry your dream has died. I’m completely, fully sorry. I can’t even begin to imagine what you’re facing.
I would like to share some observations I’ve had the privilege to witness.
May I do that?
A marriage that is trembling, one that has lost it’s way…I’ve seen one spouse turn to their faith in God and lean in with everything they’ve got. They lift up their spouse to the Lord thinking that He will change their spouse. Surprisingly, change usually occurs in the one doing the praying first. I’ve witnessed patience creep in. A more positive attitude. I’ve seen walls of defensiveness slowly be chipped away.
A marriage that is over…the women I know who have walked through a marriage and ended on the other side of divorce, I’ve seen them find their strength through the journey. I know, it’s a horrible way to realize how strong you are…horrible…but it just is. I’ve witnessed it first hand.
He can take the things in our life that some meant for our harm, and He can turn them into something wonderful. Something we could have never predicted.
” And we know that God causes everything to work together[m] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”
Can I make an attempt to encourage you here?
Whether your marriage is shaking, whether the gauntlet has already been thrown down, whether the counselors just aren’t working or your spouse refuses to even give them a try…whether your court date is next week or you’ve been on your own for a while now…whether you’re just plain unhappy and you haven’t said the “D” word out loud, but you’re thinking about it…
Romans 8:28 tells us that God will work things out for our good-but only for those who love Him.
Do you love Him? This may not sound like an “encouraging” question, but it’s key.
Do you love Him?
Get close to the One who knows you and your spouse (or ex-spouse) better than you know yourselves. Let your closest friend or friends hug you and baby sit for you and go to court with you and pray with you. Make sure you can trust who you confide in, make sure they are a friend who will talk to God about you, that is the mark of a true friend.
I’m sorry about your marriage.
But there is hope. There is always hope for better days ahead for those who love God.
Praying for those walking this hard road,