My husband gave me 30 days
Bert had never come home in the middle of a workday, but five years ago, on April 1, he did. “We need to talk.” Nothing could have prepared me for the next words out of his mouth.
“I want a divorce.”
His words sliced through me, and a hard knot formed in the pit of my stomach. I could tell from the look on his face that this was no April Fool’s joke. In fact, Bert suggested I begin looking for a place in Louisiana where my family lived – and to do it by the end of the month.
While I knew that Bert contributed his share to our marriage problems, I couldn’t ignore my part. Now I had 30 days to pack and find a new place – or get serious about becoming the wife I’ve always wanted to be.
“God, please change me!” I cried.
For years, I’d been praying for God to intervene in our marriage. On Easter Sunday, the day before that April 1, I had prayed even more earnestly for God to give our marriage new life. I knew without a doubt that God had heard my prayer. Needless to say, Bert’s “I want a divorce” announcement painfully contradicted my expectations.
But God was intervening – in a beautifully effective way. That afternoon, while Bert counted each of my faults on his fingers, I remained seated. Normally I would have returned fire by getting into his face and spouting off my list of reasons for hating him. Instead, with tears pouring down my cheeks, I answered, “You’re right, Bert. I do all of those things. I’m so sorry.”
I shudder to think how differently it could have worked out had Bert asked for a divorce before that Easter prayer. It’s not like I suddenly became blind to Bert’s faults. Rather, it was that God had given me grace to see my own sinful behavior, too. As I continued to repent of my sins and receive God’s mercy, God’s resurrection power transformed my heart – and, eventually, our marriage.
Today, while Bert and I continue to take responsibility for our own behavior, we know our marriage is still far from perfect. We occasionally fall back into our old ways, but when we do, we don’t stay there nearly as long.
And now, every April 1, Bert comes home in the middle of the day. But instead of telling me why he no longer wants to be married to me, he takes my hands in his, looks me in the eyes and says, “Please don’t ever leave me.”
What about you?
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- Will you consider taking the first step in your marriage by confessing the areas you need God’s help regarding your own behavior in your marriage?
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Thanks for such an inspirational story. A true needed blessing.I would like to know your opinion on if you believe God blesses every marriage? And how should one deal with others negativity towards ones marriage? Ty for your time and response.
Kati, I don’t know if God blesses every marriage because some may marry out of His will. However, I do believe that God will help anyone who asks Him for help to be a better spouse.
I’m not sure if I understand your second question. Are you asking how do we handle it when a person isn’t supportive of our marriage and speaks negatively about it?
Thank you. How can a marriage in love between two in God be outside His will?. Well I guess yes I was asking how you I or any married persons to deal with conflict from others on or about their marriage? Again ty
Hi, Kati. It’s certainly tough dealing with people who speak negatively about your marriage or your spouse. It would take a great deal of prayer and Bible reading for me to get through that, for sure. Only God’s love, grace, and mercy can get anyone through that.
As you grow in the knowledge of how much God loves you, Kati, you will be able to love others more. The same with grace and mercy, etc. The more we experience God’s grace and mercy for ourselves (especially when we don’t deserve it), the more we can extend those attributes to others. But it’s not easy, I know.
And when I feel attacked, I have to spend LOTS of time meditating on Bible verses. Years ago, when I was facing some criticism, meditating on verses was a tremendous help to me. Through the Psalms, Epistles and Proverbs, etc., I was able to gain a Christlike perspective – as I allowed His Word to transform my mind.
Have you read the book Total Forgiveness by R T Kendall? It’s a wonderful book.
I remember praying fervently for you during that time. I could not believe you were standing in faith. I could not believe you were standing at all. This was a true miracle that unfolded.
A true miracle, indeed! Praise God for all He continues to do. Thank you again, dear, dear friend, for your fervent prayers. You were among the very few I confided in during that time.