You represent so many of the women who resonate with what I write. You represent the women who send me emails thanking me for sharing my heart or asking for advice on whether to file for divorce or fight for custody. You represent the women who whisper to me at speaking engagements that their marriages are so hard and they don’t know if they can stand it even one more day. You represent the women who tell me that they don’t know how to love their husbands and be a Christian at the same time because they despise their husbands.
So, though everything I’ve said in the last two posts are things I believe and wish for you…the forgiving, the letting go, the healing, the moving on…I want to say one more (long) thing.
I am so, so sorry for your pain. There is a reason that you’re stuck and it’s because the pain is so deep. You have been so very wounded, down into your core. The man that committed before God to love you more than anyone else not only didn’t love you well, he hurt you repeatedly. Sometimes unintentionally, but sometimes he actually meant to do you harm. I have heard the worst stories of hatred living itself out in marriages that I have to ask God to help me not remember the details. And I have lived it…so I don’t need to ask God to help me imagine. I know the pain. And it’s a very unique pain to be a lonely, Christian, married woman.
But know this…you are not alone. And when I say that I mean, unfortunately, you are in good company. There are more of us out there than I ever imagined when I first started telling my story. You do not walk alone. And when I say that I also mean, Jesus is with you. He has been with you, he is with you now, and he will be with you. He was sitting beside you (even closer than that actually) throughout each moment of your marriage. He’s there. You are not alone.
And I would also say, he wants to bring you healing, restoration, new life. His desire for you is not for you to carry your pain on your back like a weight for the rest of your days. His desire for you is to rescue you, to bind up the wounds, and then to redeem the pain and turn the ugly into something gorgeous. He can do that for you. I’m seeing it in my life, so I know it’s totally true…sometimes in tiny slivers, sometimes in huge, sweeping strokes. But gorgeousness is there. And it’s waiting for you too. You simply (and I say simply with a smile on my face knowing it’s the farthest thing from simple) need to ask him to help you let go and move on. He will. It will take a while. But he will. I promise.
And then, sweet girl, I would pray over you. So if you are hurting today, please picture me praying for you right this moment:
Heavenly Father, I give you your daughter. She is hurting. She is broken. We come to you and I place her on your lap. Please hold her so very close. Please help her tangibly experience your presence in intimate ways. Please show yourself to her as her husband (Isaiah 54:5). Please show yourself to her as her healer (Jeremiah 30:17). Please restore her joy (Psalm 51:12). Please help her to release her pain to you and move forward and look ahead (Philippians 3:13). Please give her something to look forward to (2 Peter 3:13). Please use her pain to bring comfort to other women who are hurting (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). Remind her that you think she is precious and that you love her completely (Isaiah 43:4). Remind her that you will always, always be with her, no matter what (Matthew 28:20). Amen.
(Take some time today and look up the verses referenced in the prayer and ask the Spirit to make them come to life for you.)