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Adultery–Finding Hope in Jesus

by Rachel Weinberg

Adultery. I huddled by my fireplace in a vain attempt to ward off the chill this word produced in my heart. The questions tormenting my mind gave me no rest. How could he betray our love? What had I done to deserve this nightmare? How could he do this to our kids?

I tried to think rationally, but my inner turmoil only intensified. Hurt and outraged by the injustice of betrayal, I beat the floor with my fists and screamed at God; I want revenge! Physically attacking the other woman and tearing out her hair would be therapeutic. Or better yet, let my husband catch ME with another man! Ludicrous fantasies, of course, but I couldn’t resist entertaining these wild scenarios.

I pleaded with God, Please let me DO something or I’ll go crazy! Isn’t there some acceptable Christianized way to get even? As a believer I knew that God says revenge is mine. But could I trust Him to do the right thing? You are kind and compassionate, God, and Youll be too easy on them! My sympathies lay with Jonah.

I stayed by the fireplace until evening as grief in all its various forms consumed me. The battle to give up my desire for retribution raged on. Finally, exhausted and utterly broken, I whispered, “You can have revenge, Lord. I won’t take it. But, oh please, fight for me!”

My husband ended the affair and committed to the process of reconciliation, but the next four years of healing proved the most difficult of my life. Though our marriage survived, I look back and honestly don’t know how I endured the pressures. I only know that God was with me.

Motivated by pain, at first I tried hard to fix our relationship. I didnt know where to turn for answers, and all my attempts to put the broken pieces of my life back together seemed as futile as salvaging Humpty Dumpty. No simple formula existed to save my marriage, no matter how desperately I wanted an intact home, especially for my children.

Lost in a sea of uncertainties, I decided to focus on one thing: staying close to Jesus. He became all that mattered. And He alone I gave the right to tell me what to do or not do. Aligning myself with Him helped disentangle me from power struggles with my husband. As I placed myself under His authority and protection, I discovered some wonderful benefits and surprising freedoms:

1. I realized that regardless whether my marriage survived or failed, I’d be okay as long as I had Jesus.

2. Since Jesus now held responsibility for the outcome of my marriage, I could stop working so hard to find answers. He was the Answer!

3. I’d been concerned that my emotional distress impaired my ability to mother my children. Now I entrusted them to Jesus. As His loving protection became evident in their lives, I was encouraged and comforted.

4. As a perfectionist, I held the erroneous belief that controlled interactions with my husband would help save my marriage. Jesus allowed me to be human, to fail, to express unpleasant emotions such as anger and grief. The outcome lay with Him anyway.

The familiar words in John 14.6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life,” took on new meaning:

The Way. Jesus became the Way through my problems. Where I faced impossible obstacles, He cleared new paths. He also worked in the midst of my circumstances to provide for me.

The Truth. The Truth is hard to get at when two people are embroiled in conflict. Each person holds tenaciously to their perception of things. Because I had been lied to, how could I trust anything my husband said? Nor could I trust my own volatile emotions. But JesusHe is Truth!

The Life. Betrayal is the knife that murders a trusting heart. Adultery certainly brings death to a relationship. As I mourned my marriage, Jesus revealed Himself as my faithful Bridegroom who promised to never leave or forsake me. And He was able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power at work within us. (Eph. 3:20) I concluded that if God could raise Jesus from the grave, He could also resurrect dead marriages.

The Lord became my Way, my Truth, my Life, and I experienced Him everywhere–alone in my car, yelling at Him through my tears; on my bed in the middle of the night reading His Word; in the comforting voice of my prayer partner. He who is called Wonderful, truly became my Counselor and Prince of Peace.

Wherever you find yourself today, regardless in what crisis or turmoil, let me point you to Jesus. Pry your eyes away from your circumstances. Look at Him. Make Him your Way, your Truth, and your Life.

You may have lost everything to Hurricane Katrina. You may have lost a loved one to cancer. You may have lost a child to drug addiction. I know only this–Jesus is all that matters.

©2006 Rachel Weinberg. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Recommended Reading:

Forgive and Love Again, by John Nieder and Thomas M. Thompson
Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend
Love Must Be Tough by Dr. James Dobson
The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman

Rachel Weinberg and her husband have two children who are nearly grown. She enjoys writing, volunteering in Womens Ministries at her church, and spending time with her friends.