Monday, May 14, 2012

Radical Restoration

Before you read this, please know, not one word has been typed that my husband has not read.  He is my greatest support and encourager.  He's my best friend :)  His hope, as well as mine, is that by sharing our story, one more marriage will be radically restored!


The word radical is defined as different from usual or traditional; extreme.


The word restoration (restore) is defined as to bring back to or put back into a former or original state, to renew.


As I looked these words up, I chuckled.


Let me explain.


Our Pastor started a new sermon series on "Marriage" a few weeks back.


Yesterday, being Mother's Day, we received a message that was far from directed to mothers, but to the men in the congregation on how to treat their wives, mother's, daughters.


It was powerful.


I laughed, teared up, and walked away thankful.


There was a time when I would have had nothing good to say about my husband and had a list of everything wrong he was doing; but yesterday, not only were the chuckles for some of the irritating and goofy things men in general do, but the Lord showed me in the many areas my husband had grown in our marriage.


I spent 3 years and 6 months, not only angry at my husband, but also angry at God.  I was ready to quit, not only my marriage, but God.  I felt abandoned by the one thing I knew, my faith.


When Chris and I got married I would have never imagined I would have to process what was coming.


For 28 years I had lived like the world.  I involved myself in sex, drugs, alcohol; and those activities were a daily part of my life.  When I gave my heart to the Lord, I believed Christian men would never party at strip clubs, look at porn or cheat on their wives.


Boy, did I have a lot to learn.


My expectations were naive.


I came home from being gone for three days and two nights with a modeling event for Kayla.


Nothing seemed different, everything was as it should be.


A few days later I went to look at my laptop history to find a link I had googled before leaving town.


The history had been cleared.  I was confused, so asked Chris about it.  He said it was nothing.


The next night, I "accidentally" accessed my laptop history in a way I didn't know I could.


Chris obviously didn't know it either, because there it was.


Porn.


On my laptop.


It couldn't be.


My mind began racing and my heart beating so hard I couldn't process or think.


This couldn't be.


"Not Chris.  He would NEVER do this!"


I specifically remember thinking, "I married a christian man so I would NEVER have to worry about this sort of thing EVER!"


I believed I would never "feel" inferior to any woman ever again because the christian man I marry would always treat me like fine jewels and love me for who I was . . . .  for my fat, my cellulite, my rolls, my sags . . . it was going to be real love.


Those feelings of security, were gone in a flash.


The confrontation was tough.


I made his life a living hell for months and months to come.  We slept in separate rooms and if that wasn't available, he slept on a pallet on the floor.


Life as we new it was gone.


There were counseling sessions, accountability partners, steps to try and "make it right," but none of it was good enough for me.


I doubted everything.


The thought of looking at him or even touching him brought me anguish and disgust.  My daily prayer was continuously, "God do whatever it takes to bring him to his knees."  It was not a prayer of sincerity, but revenge.  In fact, many days I begged God to release me from the marriage; even secretly thinking it would be better for him to die because the thought of divorcing him would bring devastation to my children.  Through it all, I didn't want them (our children) to hurt.


In October of 2011 I began praying God would heal my marriage.


On November 4, 2011, He began showing me answers to that prayer.


I realized my husband was funny; that I had missed him; that he really was sorry for the pain he caused.


I couldn't explain it, but God was healing my heart.


In these last six months, not only has forgiveness taken place in my heart; but a love and passion so far beyond what our marriage started at that it seems unreal.


I miss him when he is at work or in class.  I yearn for those hugs I so often would reject.  Holding his hand brings me the butterflies in my tummy that once lived there when we were dating and first married.  There is a respect I have for my husband now, that I must shamefully say I never had before.


Here me, and here me clear; I am not excusing my husband's actions.  What my husband did in May of 2009 was wrong.  In my heart I believed he had committed adultery.  Getting over that was tough.  BUT, it was not until I asked God to change MY heart and heal our marriage, that there were any steps of restoration.


Through those 3 years and 6 months, I had forgotten that there were two of us.  While I knew I wasn't "perfect," I felt like my "sin" of holding bitterness and rejection was nothing compared to what "he did."  I felt like he needed to suffer and I made sure he did.


Me walking in disobedience of not reconciling with my husband was just as wrong as what my husband did.  


Sin is sin.


I can not tell you how that first prayer of, "Lord heal our marriage." began changing everything.  AND to be completely honest, I didn't mean it when I wrote it in my journal.  I wrote what I knew the Lord was telling me to write.  I wrote in obedience, and that was it.  My heart was not in it.


So when I think of restoration, and saw that definition, "to take back to the original state," I thought, "I sure don't want to go back to the original state, cause our marriage is in a MUCH better state; BUT, to have been given RADICAL restoration; yeah.  I'll take it!"


May I encourage you; ladies, to pray for your husband's, your son's, your father's, your pastor's.  Ask God to give them pure eyes.  Families are being destroyed.  Pray, also, for the men and women involved in the "entertainment" industry.  


I believe  God is still in the miracle business.  We, as Christian American's, can turn this world around!


Matthew 6:22, "The eye is the lamp of the body, and if your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light."

4 comments:

Kim @ Stuff could... said...

Marriages do have their ups and downs...but if we let God help us..it is amazing what He will do...Our marriage is in its best stage now as we are older

Joanne said...

What a powerful post. God is so amazing. You are so right, that industry is ruining marriages , lives of the young women in the industry and so much more. It robs and robs and for some they don't even know they are being duped and taken in until it's too late. I admire your husband for allowing this post. No marriage is perfect. I am so proud of you for letting God take over and leading the way! God bless you and your Husband now and always!
Blessings, Joanne

Flying high in the sky.... said...

agree with Kim.. glad things settled...take care.. have a very very happy married life ...

Tracy said...

Wow! Good for you for allowing God to heal your heart as well as your marriage.