God grieves with you when an unfaithful spouse says, I just don't love you anymore, and He longs to bring comfort and healing to your broken heart.
For those devastated by unwelcome divorce:
- Adultery is evil, and God hates it. Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral (Heb. 13:4). When someone gets involved sexually with a person other than his or her spouse, it's not an affair or fooling around - it's adultery. Adultery cuts at the heart of what it means to be married. When a person is unfaithful, he or she violates a commitment designed to mirror the faithfulness of God Himself.
- Don't blame God. No one is forced to commit adultery. No one can say they didn't know it was wrong. God has given us the freedom to choose how we shall act. God cannot be blamed for the wicked choices of sinful people. The responsibility for sin belongs to the sinner alone.
- You must take responsibility for your own sin. Your sin is no one's fault but your own - not your
parents for your upbringing, your spouse for neglect, or the sexual partner for entrapment. The tendency is to shift the blame for your sin.
From Where Is God When Bad Things Happen? by Luis Palau, copyright (c) 1999. Used by permission of Doubleday, a division of Random House, Inc., New York, N.Y. For online information about other Random House, Inc. books and authors, see Internet Web Site at http://www.randomhouse.com.
- God can soothe the pain. Don't ever entertain the thought that God abandoned you at the same time your spouse did. God never walks out on you, although you may walk away from Him. In John 4 a woman - scarred, bitter, angry, and confused by five ugly divorces - met Jesus. He caused her to confront her failures and offered her forgiveness and hope. She left Him with vibrant enthusiasm and healing for her ravaged soul.
- God can heal broken relationships. Divorce is ugly and always leaves painful wounds, but Jesus is an expert at bringing reconciliation to warring parties. Even when the marriage cannot be saved or restored, personal reconciliation can take place.
- God can be your husband. When marriages cannot be restored, there is hope. For your Maker is your husband - the Lord Almighty is His name - the Holy of one of Israel is your Redeemer, He is called the God of all the earth. The Lord will call you back as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit - a wife who married young, only to be rejected (Is. 54:5-6). God longs to bring you the joy and contentment that your failed marriage could never deliver. He loves you and will never reject you. He asks only that you give Him your heart, as broken as it may be.
- Reject bitterness by forgiving the one who hurt you. The pain of divorce, left to itself, usually transforms itself into bitterness for the rejected spouse - and the children as well. You must forgive your ex-spouse. It isn't easy, and the spouse doesn't deserve it. But say out loud, I forgive him/her. It's in the past. Like God in Christ forgave me, I've forgiven him/her. Only then will you be free. By forgiving the one who hurt you, you release yourself from the prison of hate.
Luis Palau is an international evangelist who speaks to people through radio and TV broadcasts in 104 countries, and face-to-face to 13 million more people in 68 nations. He is the author of several books, including God is Relevant. Luis and his wife, Patricia, have four grown sons and live in Portland, Ore.
Originally appeared in Live It on Crosswalk.com.