When I was 25, I did not marry a good man. I married a man that was lost, emotionally unavailable, drowning in lies, and headed down a path of self destruction dragging me right along with him. I soon found myself compromising my values and trading in my emotions for indifference. The indifference helped me survive, and the sin numbed my pain. We had only been married for a short time, and I felt more alone than I had ever felt in my life.
While I desperately longed for a Christ-centered marriage, I continued to live in my own sin, waiting for my husband to lead us in our relationship with Jesus. After I woke up to the consequences of my own bad behavior, I thought being more positive, going to church, and serving more selflessly would change our circumstances. I was sure that our brokenness was my fault and that I could change our relationship if I worked harder and prayed more.
Time passed, and I soon found out that I was pregnant. I was more determined than ever to make our broken marriage work. I wanted our little family to be perfect for the life that was growing inside me, and as much as I tried, I couldn’t fix us. My continuous striving to fix my husband and our marriage was like putting a band-aid on a cancer, and the cancer was malignant.
Shortly after the birth of our first son, our world imploded. Secrets, the kind that destroy relationships, and harvest hurt and bitterness, and crack the very core of your being were exposed. One secret after another was revealed, and we soon found ourselves isolated from every single person we loved and trusted, including each other.
For the first time ever, I was alone with God. My husband was alone with God. God had removed every obstacle in order to meet us face-to-face and pursued us ferociously until He had our undivided attention. Separately, we met God…for the first time ever. And in that meeting place, he brought us together. There we saw sincerity, genuine repentance, and a love that was unlike anything else we had ever known.
Slowly the love we were given from Jesus overflowed into our marriage. It took time. It did not happen overnight, but God was moving, restoring, fixing in the hours, days, and months that followed. Soon five years had gone by, and I found myself married to the most amazing, faithful, Christ-filled man that loves deeply and extends grace every day. It may not be the love story I had imagined in my youth, but it’s better than any love story I could have dreamed possible.