Now for me, these two chapters go hand in hand. I love the what she says in chapter 3 - " No one walks down the isle thinking Gee, I hope this man makes me miserable for the rest of my life." Its funny reading it, it made me chuckle, but it wasn't funny when it was happening. Everyone knows what happened with me and my ex husband so I won't bore you again with that long story. I'll just skip to the end. Everyday for me is a struggle , not the divorce part, but the forgiveness. I have to make a conscience effort to not briing it up to him again everytime I see him or when he does stuff to make me mad (and that seems to be alot lately). I am not perfect, and the days I get mad I wonder if I have really forgiven him at all. But in Colossians 3:13 it says " Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." Talk about a mouth full. God says we HAVE to forgive, its there, just as He forgave you...whew! And not only forgive the person who hurts or disappoints you but forgive them UNCONDITIONALLY and when they dont deserve it.
There is no need to hold onto bittnerness and resentment because that only gives Satan the power and that's what he wants anyway. 2 Corinthians 2:10-11 - " If you forgive anyone, I also forgive him. And what I have forgiven- if there was anything to forgive - I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake, in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not aware of his schemes." Satan uses ours hurts and disappointments to keep us stuck in one place and unable to move on wit hour lives.
For a really long time, after my divorce, my ex husband and I lived together. Believe it or not, we were roomates and I thought in my head that as long as the kids were babies and I could sucker him into staying, he would. But even that for me became a pain and I remember saying to him the day he left... "I can't believe you are doing this to us, I would never do what you did!!!"
Biggest mistake I EVER made saying that...... because of the hurts and resentment I still had for him at that point, I made so many foolish choices it's not even funny! I mean alot.. and it was all b/c I really didn't know what was going on and I had not forgiven him .. but what was going on was Satan had me and his plan was in full force. I don't have enough time or paper to get into everthing I did after that point, but for the next five years I was a completely different person than what anyone had known. I was saying and doing things that I knew were wrong but it got to a point where I didn;t even think about that anymore and I just wanted to.. period. Didn't care who it hurt.. I just wanted to. And I was mad.. at my ex husband, at his new girlfriend, and even at God. I mean I had "done it all right" up til that point and I rally couldn't figure out WHY I had to go through this.
James 1:2-4 " Consider it pure joy, my brother, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverence. Perseverence must finish its work so that you may be mature and compette, not lacking anything."
I would love to tell you that shortly after I got on this path, that I read this verse and it all got better. But as it is, I have been divorced 5 years and it was not until about a year ago that I finally started to get a grip on my life. See I was still mad at God.. I mean I was going to church and doing all the church "stuff" but I wasn't living it at home. And honestly, I really can't tell you the exact day, but what I can tell you is that I have a few friends who ride my tail like no other and they saw me doing wrong and unlike alot of the ones who didn't say a word.. these did. EVERYDAY.. until it started to sink in and for that I cannot thank them enough. I had to forgive.. my ex and myself. I actually told my ex I was sorry and I guess since I had not acted like it for so long.. he actually told me he didnt believe me. Now don't get me wrong, he and I still have different ways we parent so we have issues still.. but I pray about it and one day, maybe he'll believe me and accept it. As for forgiving myself.... it took alot longer for that one cause I had messed up big time.. you know how we do it.. rank our sins.. well in my head I had done a BIG sin and I didn't think God cared anymore especially since I had not talked to Him n so long. Which take me to God.... I was mad!! I mean MAD at Him... and Ohhhhhhhhhhh do you know asking God to forgive me was really hard... although I knew He had not left me in the beginning .. my mind was just clouded. But I asked and I was reassured through the studying I was beginning then, that God loves and forgives even when I mess up.
So don't give up yet.. even through all the rough days, it isn't the life I signed up for, but it's the one I got, and with God's help, it's going to be ok.
I hope you all have a great day.. Lord willing, we will talk again tomorrow!