He said the “d” word in our passage this week. Divorce. To be honest, I just don’t want to go there in this post. Mainly because I know that statistically speaking, divorce has touched at least half of you personally. And it’s a sticky issue with so many variables, one that deserves more than just a passing blurb.
But…I can’t leave it there. I do want say a few quick things.
First, divorce isn’t the unpardonable sin. God offers healing and wholeness after divorce. Because He’s God and He does that kind of thing. He mends and brings newness. So if divorce “marks” you, believe Him for the healing.
Flickr photo credit
That said, Scripture clearly teaches that divorce is not God’s original intention with marriage. (See Mark 10:4-9) He created marriage to last.
When we covenant before Him, He makes two people into one flesh. That oneness goes further than merely living under the same roof. It’s a oneness that runs deeper than our physical eyes can see, which is why divorce brings excruciating hurt. (And which may explain why older couples start to look alike. Freak-y.)
When we divorce we literally rip apart something that no longer has a clear dividing line. We rip apart one flesh. Hence the lasting scars. (I find myself pausing to pray for anyone who has gone through this kind of soul-pain.)
13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise… 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
James 5:13; James 5:16
So divorce isn’t the unpardonable sin, but it isn’t His intended design. Therefore it comes with pain.
But there’s a third thing about divorce that I think plagues us even more destructively than legal divorce. It’s divorce of the heart. It’s when we stay physically married yet we have calloused hearts towards our spouse. I’m certain that this type of divorce — the kind that only our God sees — destroys an even greater percentage of our homes.
It nearly destroyed ours. But God.
If your heart is hard towards your spouse, then ask God to soften it. If you have anger or bitterness towards your mate, then confess and ask God to cleanse it. (1 John 1:9) Ask Him to change you. Ask Him to stir love in your spirit, even if you can’t feel much love from your husband (or wife).
Because He is sovereign. And He purposefully drew us to our spouse to transform us into holy love vessels — for our good and His glory. And He absolutely blesses the choice to love.
For those joining me on the memorizing challenge, hang in there. This is week twelve which means we will have a catch up week next week. In the meantime keep repeating His Word. We remember what we rehearse. The verses for this week are Matthew 5:34-37.
Fill me, Lord…
How do Jesus’ words on divorce (or remarriage, which I didn’t even mention) challenge or encourage you?