Since it’s always so exciting to reach a new milestone as we stand together to promote marriage restoration, it’s a tremendous privilege and with great joy that I announce that one of the earliest FAM Fellowship members will be marrying her covenant husband again this weekend! While we’ve been blessed to witness so many marriage restorations, this will be the first FAM member to remarry after divorce and there’s absolutely no doubt that many more will follow! But this will be a particularly special occasion for all of us, because the FAM members are invited to celebrate and rejoice with MNO (member name omitted) and her husband as they renew their marriage vows by witnessing their wedding via teleconference. As soon as MNO and her hubby made their plans to remarry, it was very important to her to share her testimony here to help encourage others that what God has done for her, He will do for all. So it is my hope and prayer, as well as MNO’s that you will be very blessed and encouraged by reading her testimony and that you are reminded that just as Proverbs 21:30 declares, There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the LORD. And as MNO’s testimony and Psalm 126:5 both confirm, Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. Praise the Lord, for He has been ever so faithful to do as His Word says in Jeremiah 31:13, where He promised, Then maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.May your sorrow soon turn to joy!
First and foremost, I would like to thank God and give him all of the glory for the restoration of my marriage. And I feel led by him to write this to encourage all of you to trust in God and know that he is faithful to answer all that he has promised.
In March of 2006, my husband walked out on me and our marriage, and being full of pride, it was the most devastating event of my life. For months, we kept in touch and I was convinced that he still loved me and would not be able to do without me. Yet, as the months went by, I cried and cried, wondering why God had allowed this to happen. I couldn’t understand how the sweet man I had married turned into such an evil man. The few times we met as per my request, he’d flaunt his other relationships in my face. In his eyes, the marriage ended when he walked out. But in mine, we were still married in God’s eyes. So I would email him bible versus on marriage, adultery and so forth, but he just got meaner and eventually just ignored my calls; to the point that we completely stopped speaking to each other.
After six or seven months of that, I began harassing him and pressuring him to file for a divorce, and we ultimately ended up meeting at the courthouse to finalize the paperwork. I had to insist on him going there with me to ensure that the paperwork was filled out correctly, because by that time, the courts had rejected our petition four or five times. So I became impatient and told my husband that if I wanted things done right, I obviously had to do it myself. And two weeks after we filled out the paperwork, I received the notice in the mail of the dissolution of my marriage, which became official on September 17, 2007; just eleven days after what would have been our fourth wedding anniversary. But I was enraged and began to cry; not fully understanding why, since I was the one who pressured him to get the divorce. I had heard through friends how much he was partying and dating, and I wanted the same for me, but knew that I had to be divorced first. I had already tried “dating” while married and knew it was wrong and I wanted to feel good about it instead of feeling so bad and guilty about it.
God is always faithful to give us the desires of our hearts when we delight in him, but in order for us to be able to receive them, he must first purge US of all of OUR ungodly desires and he must show US where WE went wrong. My husband called me personally to deliver the news about the termination of our marriage, which just upset me even more. So from that moment forward, I began to date, party, drink, etc. But the more I did those worldly things, the emptier I felt inside. I was going out on dates with ungodly men, while just wishing that my husband was the one by my side. I was trying to deal with so many emotions, and at night, I found myself praying; asking God to keep my heart free of resentment toward my husband and to do his will in my life. I would ask God to bring me the right man, and I continued to ask him to save my husband and to show him the right way and his wrong doings, so he’d find the right Godly woman one day too.
As much as I partied, I never felt at ease. I always knew that I wanted God to bless me, but I was too hurt to allow myself to realize that I still loved my husband and that what I was doing was wrong. And it seems that God allowed me to date various types of men who were everything I always wanted in my husband; the success, money, great dancer, smooth talker, etc…I had it all. Each man had a little bit of what I was looking for. But, each and every one of them also had one of my own bad characteristics; short tempered, prideful, revengeful, ambitious, self Righteous, etc., and each one them had an excessive measure of their particular UNGODLY CHARACTERISTIC!
But through all of that, I began to see all the evil traits I had within myself and how each and every one of them had played a part in the temporary destruction of my marriage, and I felt at a loss. And I was eventually forced to move back in with my parents, because I had been such a bad steward of my finances. Meanwhile, my husband had moved in with another woman within a month of our divorce becoming final, and I swore I would never, ever go back to him. He sent me one last email, attempting to leave the door of communication between us open, but I told him where to put it! As I said, I was very hurt and not thinking or behaving very godly myself.
So I totally stopped talking to my husband, and I remember crying out and truly releasing him to God in January of 2008. I asked God to help me really forgive my husband because I didn’t want to feel the pain, bitterness and anger anymore; I said that I just wanted his will for my life and that I knew he had something better for me even if I didn’t know what it was. And I asked that some day my husband would realize that I wasn’t the only one responsible for what happened in our marriage and that he’d seek my forgiveness one day too. I knew that I had tried to reason with my husband and felt that nothing would salvage our marriage. So I gave up on all of MY efforts and truly handed him to God. I didn’t call him or email him; doing nothing at all.
Then on July 25, 2008, after almost 1 year of no real communication, we ran into each other at a mutual friend’s wedding. Of course, I knew he would be there, and with the other woman, so I made and effort to look extra stunning, because I was not about to be over shadowed by the new girl. All of my friends suggested taking a date, but I said no, because it was not my intention to make him jealous; I just wanted to make sure I looked good. So I showed up at the party “all dolled up”…wearing an emerald green dress with gold accessories (my husband had rarely seen me in a dress, because I hated wearing them). I walked in and he was sitting at the table with my best-friend’s husband. I walked to their table, because I had to say hi to my friend, and my husband could not take his eyes off of me. I hugged everyone at the table and held out my right hand to shake his hand, but he jumped up out of his chair and hugged me. Then I walked to my table and began mingling with my friends. He looked so out of place, and I later found out that he had broken things off with the girl and was living with his sister. There was so much sadness in his eyes, but he was no longer my business; he was God’s.
On the late afternoon of August 17, 2008 my husband called me out of the blue and asked me if I would meet him for coffee, and I reluctantly agreed. Then I called my boy-friend at the time and asked for his permission, even though I had already accepted the invitation. The boyfriend gave his consent, and I met my hubby that Wednesday night, while on my way to a business trip. We had dinner and sat across from each other. I was bubbly and energetic, and he looked gloomy and sad. We ate dinner in an hour and I was in a hurry to leave. He walked me to the parking lot, where so much happened…. He hugged me and asked me to forgive him, but without looking at him, I pulled away and told him I had forgiven him a long time ago, and that I was saddened that we’d never find out why our marriage had not worked. I looked at him and his eyes were full of tears. I hugged him again, and got into my car and left. The next day, he called and wanted to communicate, but I wouldn’t respond.
Meanwhile, the problems with the “boyfriend” got more intense and I ended that relationship in a moment of rage. I attempted to work things out with him, but he was too prideful and stubborn. But it all worked out, because having him out of my life enabled me to be receptive to my husband’s attempts to romance me. He asked me out on another date, upon my return from my business trip and it was then that he asked for forgiveness and asked me to give him another chance. Even though my pride was still alive and well, I still could not walk away and end it right then and there. Eventually, I reluctantly accepted his proposal to get to know each other once more, but in the back of my head I was thinking, “How dare you try to come back like nothing happened?” Well, that prideful, self-righteous, unforgiving attitude ended up affecting us later on that week. We spent Labor Day weekend together and we had an argument on the last day. And he stopped calling and texting me like he had been doing up until the argument, and I lost it. I wanted to call him, and tell him “How dare you come back and romance me and then at the drop of a dime, cut off all forms of communication with me.” But by God’s grace and mercy, I held back. Then that night, I cried so much that I thought I had stopped breathing, and then I became angry with myself; wondering why it was affecting me so much; after all, I had lived without him for the past two and a half years, and I could do it again. So I cried out to God, and that’s when He made me realize that I had a big chip on my shoulder, and that I was looking down on my husband, with an “I knew you’d come back” attitude. That was a terrible attitude to have, and God showed me how displeasing it was to him and just how much I truly loved my husband. So I cried out for forgiveness on a Wednesday, and the following Saturday, my husband called me again. We met each other again and we’ve been glued to each other ever since, and we’re getting remarried this Saturday night.
God gets ALL of the Glory for our restoration, for with Him ALL things are possible. Don’t rely on your own will, because that will always fail. With every day that goes by, God is showing me how he answers my prayers when I don’t like what my husband is doing, or how he is acting. I have to take those concerns to him and not nag, criticize or complain to my husband. God has him, and most importantly, he has our marriage.
My husband has been attending church for a few months now, which he has made clear that he intends to continue doing. And even though he’s always been romantic, now it’s to a whole new extreme. Praise the LORD! God truly showed me His Mercy and Grace, and he will do the same for you. So don’t give up; focus on allowing God to “fix” YOU, because as He is fixing you, He is faithfully fixing your spouse too. Remember, if we could have fixed our spouses, we wouldn’t have ended up temporarily separated. I say temporarily because God WILL restore!