Unless you recently relocated to the 1800s, odds are good that some of your Christian friends are divorced. And, unfortunately, odds are almost as good that some of your currently married Christian friends will be divorced in the future.
According to U.S. surveys, of all current U.S. adults who have ever been married, about 45 percent have been through at least one divorce. The divorce rate among evangelical and mainline Protestants is about the same as the national average, while the divorce rate among Catholics is a little lower, at around 37 percent.
With U.S. women initiating seven of 10 divorces, many men are caught off guard when their wives announce that the marriage is over. And these same men often feel a lack of support at church, where a “good husband” is expected to love his wife as Christ loved the church. If the wife is initiating the divorce, then the husband must not have been a good husband – at least, not good enough. As a result, about three in four divorced Christian men leave the churches that they have attended. Tragically, about 30 percent of these men never find another church home.
Your divorced Christian brother never wanted to be in the situation in which he finds himself, and he may feel that he is struggling alone. How can you support and encourage him? I consulted with Martha Flemming, a licensed professional clinical counselor with New Source Counseling, to arrive at these nine recommendations:
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