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God Restored My Marriage

marriedGod met me more than halfway; He freed me from my anxious fears. (Psalm 34:4, The Message)

By Mimi Marie

After our four year marriage ended, my husband and I shared custody of our two sons. On the days he’d come to pick them up for visitation, I’d be irritable from morning to night. It didn’t matter if he was coming in twelve hours or twelve minutes, my day was consumed by knowing he was coming. And that made my heart race. My stomach ached. I’d think of every bad thing that happened between us and get short of breath.

Regardless that I had contributed to the break up, I blamed him for not being patient, lying, and not living up to my expectations. Regret that my children had to suffer left me bitter. My attitude would show whenever my ex came around.

I began to pray for God to change my heart and read His Word every day. I even prayed for my ex, and after a while got to a place where I could tolerate him better. But it was a rollercoaster. One day I’d be mild, the next hot. Though I improved, I still wasn’t where I needed to be. Some days I thought of giving up. Why would I want to be nice anyway? After all, we were divorced.

But God showed me…

After four years of diligently studying and believing His Word, praying and learning through Biblically based studies what “healthy” looks like, I learned that it was my responsibility as a Christian to forgive and to treat my ex husband as Christ treats me. But I could not do it on my own. Though the anxiety slowly lifted it took a lot of energy for me to be kind. Continual prayer carried me through each encounter, but I had not surrendered.

The morning I asked God to give me the compassion, love and grace I needed to be genuinely kind to my ex husband was a day I will never forget. I told the Lord if it was His will that I forgive and be kind, then I needed His help. Later that day I met my ex husband for coffee to talk. As I cried and sought his forgiveness, God’s deep grace and love captured my heart. Instantly, I saw my ex husband through different eyes. His gentle smile and compassionate spirit replaced the distorted images I had held before.

The faults I accused my ex husband of were precisely the areas God had addressed in me. God had been teaching me about patience. He’d also been showing me that I needed to place all my expectations in Him and not man. And He opened my eyes to distinguish His Truth from Satan’s lies. Not only did God heal the anxiety I felt around my ex husband, nine days after I sought his forgiveness, we were remarried.

It’s only through Christ that I received a mended heart. He met me more than halfway; I asked for His help to be kind. And with open arms, He poured out His love, and gave me even more—my husband. And with that, peace.

Dear Heavenly Father:
You see what is hidden deep within. Thank you for revealing what needs to be changed to live in Your will. You correct our distorted mindsets. You hear our prayers and bring calm and rest. As Your love soaks into us, we are able to love others as You love. Thank you for your reconciling work in our hearts. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

©2010 Mimi Marie. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Bio:
My name is Mimi Marie. I’m a 32-year-old mother of two boys and live in Novi, Michigan. I attend a writer’s group bi-weekly. I’m working on a manuscript with an editor about my life’s experiences.