Back at the start of it….. Mid-July, 2006….My husband of thirty-three years, Terry, told me he didn’t feel the same toward me anymore. I over-reacted.
Words. I’ve since learned all about words. Now, I would rather speak healing words, than words that cut as well as any sharpened sword.
August 1, 2006….He told me he wanted to ‘dissolve’ the marriage. He would never use the word ‘divorce’. Quiet tears flowed that night. Something was wrong, very wrong. And he had never let me know that anything was not as it should be. Talk about being blind-sided. We had some rocky months following that night. But slowly things began to improve. He put his wedding ring back on, and eventually moved back into the master bedroom with me again. Things were healing, or so I thought. I will not dredge up the past. I’ve also learned that love does not keep a record of wrongs, and I choose to adhere to that admonishment in word, thought and memory. The past is done and gone. True forgiveness, forgives. By the mighty power of God. Certainly not in my own ability. Only by the grace of God can we truly forgive. It ain’t easy, friends. But, yes….I’m living proof that it can be done.
The world would say I’m nuts to forgive. Nuts to Stand. They would say I’m not ‘moving on’. Oh, if they only knew. But, so be it. They can say, and think whatever they want. They do not know my heart. They do not know what God and I have been through together. They do not know the calling that God has placed upon me. Physically, I’m living in this world, but my heart and soul are a part of a Kingdom…the Kingdom of God that is yet to be revealed on this earth. Oh, what a day that will be!
It’s only a matter of time.
But, I digress. Let’s see, it was in late 2008, I was living with a close family friend at the time, as I’d had to move out of the rental we’d been living in. Yes, mine was a case of betrayal and abandonment by my husband. I’m sure it was a compilation of a lot of things, a lot of ‘issues’, but Terry had said that he didn’t have all the things he felt he should have by this point in life, and was unhappy with the way things were turning out. And on and on…..and excuses, and lies, and the deception of the Evil One… Satan, who … once the darts got in…..he twisted, violently, over and over again.
I guess Terry got some really bad advice. That, coupled with the lies of Satan, and our God-given armor was battered, didn’t fit well, and had fallen into ruin.
It was only a matter of time.
We had both back-slid in our walk with the Lord. He had become a footnote in our lives and not the rock-solid foundation that He should have been. We were living our lives and thinking of God or praying only when things went sour. I will not go into the particulars, it’s no longer necessary. Oh, there was a time I could, and did, recount to God, crying out to Him, or was it whining? Oh, how I could tell God in my hurt and frustration and anger alllll that Terry had done.
There was a time in church, the sermon was particularly good, at Rock Point, under Pastor Bill Bush (awesome, animated, fervent, take-no-prisoners type of preacher, he tells it like it is, and leaves us to duke it out with God.) Anyway, I was thinking during that particular sermon that Terry really….really needed to hear this. Immediately, I mean, it was almost a physical jolt…..Jesus, who was sitting beside me, almost literally elbowed me in the ribs. “YOU, need to hear this!”
Sometimes God is very fervent too. When God speaks, its good to listen. Ya know? He was right, I needed to hear it….and straightened out by the elbow of a loving Heavenly Father, I concentrated on applying the message to my own heart. And grew up, in Him, a little bit more that day. I learned that day that I too had been at fault for the failure of my marriage. I was stunned. I always knew, on some level, that ‘it takes two’, but now….I was faced with something else entirely. Could it have been my fault? Some of it? All of it?
It was 22 miles home after church that day, and I cried the whole way. Heart-broken, and surrendered………..again.
It was only a matter of time.
But, I digress. Terry and I were both lost. It was only a matter of time before God said: “Enough!” When He states that there shall be no other god before Him, He means it.
August 14th, 2007……….I cried out to, or was I yelling at God: “Lord! Do whatever you have to do to FIX this!”
August 15th, 2007……Terry was taken away. God, in His wisdom, allowed my beloved spouse to be taken from me. But on the other side of the coin, God allowed Terry to lose nearly all that he had known in his entire adult life. The wife of his youth was left behind, his adult child who was living with us at the time was also abandoned. His home, and all his stuff. Terry may have thought he was leaving, but in truth…his world was taken from him. Striped bare…..his pre-meditated ‘escape’, was in reality orchestrated, behind-the-scenes, by a loving Heavenly Father who was fed up with these two children of His who were making a complete shambles of the ordained marriage that He had graciously bestowed upon them in their youth. Terry left for work and never came home that night.
God allowed it. For our own good.
Terry left, sending me an email later in the day, stating “I’m not coming home tonight, or any night.”
It was the most painful, desolate, heart-breaking, indeed heart-rending moment of my life. Yet, it was something that had to be done.
God saw every sin, heard every bad word, saw every sinful action, knew every sinful thought. God knew about it all, and He would only endure our sin for a season. God told me, spoke into my own heart, into my own thoughts that way back then that He was repairing that which He had ordained but that we had made a mess of. He told me that to fix us, good and proper, that we had to be removed from one another. For a season.
Once He had us reconciled to Him, grown up in Him and in ourselves….then, and only then could he reconcile us to each other. It was only a matter of time, before He would do something about the miserable condition that had become our One-Flesh Covenant Marriage.
And when He did. He did it in a BIG way. But cheer up, dear friends, things get better. For He has promised us….all….that’s ALL…ALL things work together for good to them that love God and are called according to His purpose.
His purpose will prevail. Nothing can stop it.
It was only a matter of time.
It still is.