(Note from Linda: Stephanie shared this powerful message on the private site last night and I have no doubt that it will be a blessing to everyone standing for marriage restoration, especially when another person is involved. And it is an even more powerful message from Stephanie because the day before, she had been given a “bad report” and chose to stand on the power and promise of God’s Word instead of receiving that news and was then blessed with a wonderful praise instead of what would surely not have turned out well if she had acted on what she heard! Her experience and insight is a perfect illustration of the biblical principles of standing for marriage restoration and confirms just why God teaches us to do what His Word says (Luke 6:46-49); He made us and He knows how we tick! And this powerful testimony should be more than enough encouragement for all of us to renew our commitment to DO things God’s way so we can be assured of getting HIS results, especially since we know that HE hates divorce and marital separation (Malachi 2)! So take the word of this testimony to heart and be blessed and encouraged as you use it to defeat and hurl down the devil the next time he comes calling to steal, kill and destroy your marriage (an earthly representation of our relationship with Christ Ephesians 5:29-32 and 1 Corinthians 11:7), the word of YOUR testimony (that overcomes him – Revelation 12:10-11) and your righteousness, peace and joy (what the kingdom of heaven is all about – Romans 14:17)!)
I was deep in thought today and I want to share some of my experience as a prodigal. At first, I was a little embarrassed to share it, but I realize that was the enemy’s condemnation and that I need to use my testimony as God has commanded, which I hope blesses you and will help overcome and hurl down the devil as you stand for the restoration of your marriage and family (Revelation 12:10-11).
I was very unhappy in my marriage and I didn’t believe I loved my husband anymore; we were always either arguing or giving each other the silent treatment. We lived like strangers in our routine of go to work, come home, take care of the children and repeat it all over again. And I never consulted God on anything; I was too angry and my heart was made of the hardest stone imaginable.
I met someone who “understood me”…someone who sang my praises, complimented me, etc. So I leapt in and did the wrong thing; knowing what I was doing was wrong, and knowing I was sinning against God.
There is a voice within every prodigal that tells them what they are doing is wrong. Every prodigal is shown the way out, but chooses to turn their back on what is “right.” Why? Because we are LOST…we are HURTING…and we are SAD. Yet, we show you, our spouses, that we are happy and that we could not have it better any other way; life is good, we are feeling good and having the time of our lives. Everything we ever wanted is now within this other person and you are now the enemy; you want to rob us of our joy, you don’t understand us, you don’t love us; because if you did, we wouldn’t have gone astray. Prodigals think CRAZY things. We hear the ENEMY’S voice louder than God’s; we have put God’s voice on mute and the enemy tells us that we will be happy if we are divorced from you…then we could be free, happy and fulfilled. It’s all a LIE, but we don’t know that. We even think our children will be “just fine”–another lie. We buy into the “it’s better for me to be happy…then I will be a better father/mother” trap—just another Lie.
We come home to you, our spouses, and you throw stones at us. You tell us what we are doing is wrong. You tell us we need God. You cry, you raise your voice, you act desperate, you act mean, etc. And the prodigal’s instinct…RUN!!! RUN as fast as we can!! Get away from this person!! We think YOU have lost it; not us. And your clinginess, desperation and tears make us sick to our stomachs; not because we don’t care about you–because we do–we love you, but it is hidden so deep inside that we can’t see or feel it. It makes us feel horrible because we KNOW what we are doing is wrong; you don’t need to tell us. We are running from God, and when you act like that, we run from you too.
My husband prayed for me and was the one standing for our marriage during that time. He didn’t know how to do it and often times he was so negative and emotional that I wanted nothing to do with him. Please listen to me–if my husband had been treating me nice, praising me, encouraging me, showing me respect and unconditional love, I would have been blown away. If he had been peaceful, okay with me leaving if that’s what I chose to do, and confident, I wouldn’t have known what to do with the situation. But I would have been drawn to that peace and it would have woken me up.
Believe it or not, I still have to remind myself of these things when I get all worked up and emotional. One would think that I above all, should know this. However, when we are in the midst of the storm, filled with love for our spouse and the desire for restoration, we have a tendency to want to do something, say something…anything to bring them back or keep them from leaving. BUT DON’T DO IT!! There is nothing you can say or do, and everything you say or do in your will, will FAIL. RELINQUISH your spouse to God. Put it all at His feet and walk away. AND DO NOT PICK IT BACK UP!!
You have to get to a point where you are okay either way…with restoration or without it because you are content with GOD and his love. When your relationship and love for God far surpasses that of your wife/husband, you have arrived. And when you are at peace with the thought of them leaving, your blessing of restoration is on its way. Let your prodigal GO!!! God will bring them home.
He brought me home to a man I SWORE I didn’t love, didn’t want to be with, and didn’t want to be in the same room with if it could be avoided. I thought I was in control and I would do as I pleased. Who was going to stop me? God was, but I didn’t know that!!
God indeed stopped me and now I am the one praying to God for my husband’s heart and I am the one who wants restoration. God brought me to my knees when there was nothing and no one else that could help me. Wow!! Just look at what God can do–He can do it, you guys!!! He can and He will!!! Just do your part…LOVE, LOVE, LOVE…respect, support, praise and help. When you are hurt, love them (they hurt too). When you are angry, love them (for they are angry too). God will show us amazing and wonderful things when we follow what he says. He commands us to love even our enemies (Matthew 5:43-48). And sometimes we feel that our spouse is the enemy, so we have to love them; they need our love because they have been taken captive by the enemy. PRAY THEM OUT!!! PRAY, PRAY, PRAY and be unrelenting!! DO NOT GIVE IN AND DO NOT BE MOVED by what they say or do. IT IS JUST TEMPORARY! GOD has them, so remember that they are NOT in control. Use this time to complete the work that needs to be done in yourself and let God work on your spouse. Restoration won’t work if you’re not ready.
I am writing this with Love, because I don’t want you guys to make the same mistakes. Remember that God wants our marriages restored and our families healed more than we do; we just need to get out of the way and let Him work.
With much love and gratitude to you all,