Do you ever look back at your life and wonder if you’ve made a huge mistake? If you had just chosen that path over the path you did choose, how much different (read: better) your life would be now?
I had that thought about five years into my marriage.
You see, I had one of those fork-in-the-road moments. My on-again/off-again relationship with my fiancé was currently off and I had been seeing someone briefly but who I had fallen hard for. But the pull of what I had with fiancé was too much, and one night I called my new guy friend and told him that I missed my ex- fiancé/ex-boyfriend and I needed to see if he would take me back. And so I did. And in that one phone call, I changed the entire trajectory of my life.
And then my marriage turned out to be very hard. And I thought of that phone call over and over again. And I asked myself over and over again, “Was this marriage a mistake?”
I do not know your situation. You may be reading this and in an amazing marriage and this does not resonate with you in the least because you are grateful on a daily basis that you chose the path you chose and that the husband you have is the husband you have. And if that’s you, thank Jesus. A lot.
But if you have wondered if your marriage were a mistake – and not just in a passing moment in the middle of some random fight – but if you think about this and worry about this and can’t seem to get passed this, I’m speaking to you today, sweet girl. And I’ve got a few thoughts for you.
First, to paraphrase Beth Moore, “The moment you got married, your husband became God’s will for you.” Bottom line. What’s done is done. Even if insecurity or sin got you to this place in your life, the husband you have is God’s will for you in this moment.
Secondly, as my mentor says, “God plays the ball where it lands.” It’s not like God’s up there all upset with you for picking the guy you picked. He might be thinking, “Well, that’s interesting…” or, gently, “Sweet one, what were you thinking?” but he’s not blown away; he’s not stumped. He is just moving on with your life, doing the transforming work into the likeness of Christ with the choices you’ve made.
And lastly - and perhaps most importantly as a mother - had you married someone else, you would have different children. Had I not made that phone call, there is a good chance I would not have Sara and Jack. And I refuse to believe that Sara and Jack are my “wrong path” daughter and son. They are the kids I was supposed to have. I cannot imagine my life without those two, and I bet you can say the very same thing about your children.
So in your darker, quieter moments, when you find yourself upset with yourself for the choices you’ve made that have brought you to this place, take a deep breath. Close your eyes. Unclench your fists. And ask Jesus to help you see the beauty in the pain. Ask Jesus to help you embrace your reality and to live it fully. You cannot go back. Rehearsing what-if’s will never move you farther ahead in your journey with God, they will just keep you stuck. He’s got this. He’s got you. He’s never left you.
(C) Elisabeth K. Corcoran, 2013
Elisabeth is mom to Sara (17) and Jack (15-1/2). She loves spending time with her kids, her friends, reading and writing. She is the author of At the Corner of Broken & Love; One Girl, Third World; He Is Just That Into You; In Search of Calm: Renewal for a Mother’s Heart; and Calm in My Chaos: Encouragement for a Mom’s Weary Soul. All these books can be purchased on Amazon.com. Her newest book, Unraveling, released with Abingdon Press in October.
If you are in a difficult marriage or find yourself going through a difficult divorce, I have created two private groups on Facebook that I would like to invite you to. Simply email me at email@example.com for more information.
Publication date: December 13, 2013