Saturday, May 28, 2011

Can a Divorce be a Success?

A friend of mine recently told me that marriages have hard times but you have to work through them and keep going. I wisely agreed and continued listening without giving any advice. This friend went on to say that all relationships experience some rough patches, but its up to the people involved to work it out, between the two of them, and not let what they want dissipate because of a mountain or a molehill. I thought he was preaching really good. I said, Amen.

He had the right to preach this sermon. His relationship has been through more than some rough patches, it has been through barbed wire and back again, and he has been willing to work it out. He got me to thinking, wondering if maybe I should have been more willing to work it out, per se, when my husband was a repeat offender for the umpteenth time but with evidence suggesting he was escalating his carelessness in offensiveness.

I sat down with myself and some coconut yogurt plus Jesus and said 'self, rehash the situation'. I am a forgiving person. Incredibly so. I have forgiven my ex-husband for the atrocious behaviors and painful scars he wrought upon me and my children. We have a great divorced parent relationship even today. Yet, I realize that had we not separated when we did, he would not be in the redeemed state that he has found through Christ Jesus right now.

I had to recalculate. As a Christian there is only one viable reason to leave a marriage: adulterous behavior to which no reconciliation can be had. My husband had been forgiven for his cheating several times and not only did his ways remain intact, they escalated. He had two children outside of our marriage. I ceased sexual activity with him, and sought separation. All in line with the Word of God.

Sometimes a kid doesn't think the candy store will ever close. Even if it closes they believe it will open when they through a tantrum, or wait out the renovations. But sometimes the sugar just needs to be cut out of their diet so they can get well. That was the case with him. He needed to lose everything he had so he could finally call on the only one he knew who could help him up from the bottom he had reached. Jesus.

That was a long climb back up. One I didn't get in the way of with my enabling Spirit. At one time, this man ran hard for the streets. Now he runs hard for Christ.

I couldn't have fixed him. Only God could do that. Once he felt fixed, he remarried. Here is a crucial lynch pin. It takes both parties in a marriage to make it over hurdles and through mountains. If one is going a different direction, it's a done deal.

But God's promise is to continue the work He began until the coming of Christ Jesus, so He kept working in my ex husband, and he grew past that point of unwise decisions and sitting amount the counsel of unwise people,

Now, we can work toward raising our children as divorced parents in the love of Christ. Of course it is not magic - he still has character flaws and I am still perfect as I always was...but since he can see that better now everything works more smoothly. Just kidding. The relationship is different but it is overshadowed by the wisdom of Christ Jesus.

So, after all of that reflection I decided that my friend was right. Some marriages do succeed at overcoming many hurdles, especially when both parties are in the fight. Yet, while some marriages don't make it through the storms of life intact, they can still make it through successfully if the end result is salvation, which is God's intended goal for all of His children. 

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