Monday, August 18, 2008

God Works in Mysterious Ways

Sunday evening I gave her 24 hours.

I told her she needed to get well. She needed to get off the fence and choose. She was going to dedicate herself to recovery or we would divorce.

I told her I would not tolerate even the smallest communication with John. No visits. No phone calls. No emails. No text messages.

I told her that if she did not choose, then I would assume she was going to continue this back and forth game and I would file for divorce, with or without her help.

She chose.

It was much easier this time to talk about the details of divorce since we have danced around it for so long.

I haven't told the boys.

Now it is late, I should be in bed, but something has occurred to me. It is part of this strange dance we have been doing for so long.

You see, tonight it was clear that she saw this ultimatum as in or out of our marriage. That I was focused on John. That she wondered about how we cold repair our love.

But, I realize now that there has been a gradual change in my view of this mess. It has stopped being so much about marriage, and more about her.

Some time over the last few months, even while I was grieving my dying marriage, I have come to see how deeply hurt she is. That she needs healing.

My ultimatum was for her to resolve to work on her self, her heart. That could not happen while she was still being deceitful, still contacting him. I wanted her to get healthy first, and then we could work on our marriage. Only in her being changed, her heart made whole, clean, could I begin to think about trust, marriage.

Here's the thing... Though she and I have had different hurts, we have shared many of them as well. Loss of dreams, loss of a child, the realization of the handicaps of our children, the burning down of our church by our eldest.

Through these hurts I have grown closer to God.

Through these hurts she has grown further from God.

Even if we were able to rebuild our marriage, forgive each other, love each other, trust... we are so different...

How is that?

I told her tonight it is about choices. How I chose to look at things, accept what is, take responsibility for my mistakes, recognize that pain has come from the actions of others.

She cannot understand how a loving God could permit His children to hurt, permit evil.

It is a very old question.

The strangest part of the question is the differing answers people find within their hearts.

I love God.

Some how I love Him more today than I ever have.

I've noticed the look in my eyes. How smiles have not come naturally, easily, as they once did. I don't particularly care of the careworn look in my eyes.

I also know that deep in my heart is a fountain of joy. It is still there, it will rise and flood my heart, and I will smile freely again. I'm just not ready for it yet.

I know that fountain is there because when I go to the Prayer Room at church, when I pray, and draw, and sing for my Lord in that solitary place, I feel the stirring of that joy, even under the tears of hurt.

Why is that?

The question I have isn't why does God let suffering occur. I am comfortable with the answer He has shown me. The question I have is why me? Why does my heart respond in this way? Why has her heart responded in that way?

I know sometimes God moves people's hearts... Pharoah's, Judas'... Still, there is something within our nature, within the way we each respond to the world, that makes it easier for one person to look upward in reverance and hands raised in praise, and another to look upward with resentment and hands raised in clenched fists.

We have agreed to work on filing for divorce as quickly as possible. I need to resolve this, move on.

I have a lot of hard work ahead of me.

I gladly accept the responsibility for caring for these handicapped boys. I accept that in order to give Brenda her share of our home equity I will have to refinance our home and make payments on that second mortgage. I accept that I will have to work harder to cook and clean and do house repairs, and all of that is fine with me. Really.

God has worked in my heart in ways very different than my wife's.

I love God.

Why is that different than her?


Anonymous said...

i am with you, praying for you, always here for you, artless

Anonymous said...

i am with you, praying for you, always here for you, artless

Judas Hate said...

For one to grow in the face of such painful trials and view them as lessons, find and embrace the positive, takes incredible Will power, strength, love and most

Some people already have these attributes and work to strengthen them. Some people have to learn them. As you know, He is waiting to teach anyone who wants to learn. And there, I think, is the problem. They have to want it first.

Amrita said...

Brenda has to humble herself before God unless she does that she cannot live vith anybody

Anonymous said...


It ultimately comes down to our choices admist life events....


pretty powerful

jel said...

hi friend,

the best i can say or do is a

Anonymous said...

i wonder if it is tests in faith--your life and title are called Job's Tale.

this is the story. this is the Christian faith story. maybe in time Brenda's redemption will occur but that will happen in God's way and God's time.

you see clear, very difficult and painful path.

prayers and enouragement

Fred said...

My prayers are with you, CS.

curious servant said...

Folks... I don't feel like writing a post, but I feel like letting this out...

What happened to her? Was it my fault? I met her leap Year Day 1980 and I fell in love.

And it is all dust.

I can't let my kids down, I can' let what I feel grow too large...

I love God... I know there are wonderful things in the world, in the universe, in me...

But right now I am...

what am I?

I'm still full of faith.

I still have hope and confidence.

I'm still able to function to do what needs to be done.

I guess...

I'm sad.

Anonymous said...

Allow yourself time to grieve Will.
Allow yourself to be sad
This is BIG stuff of life.
Real big.

We'll all be here.

Lucy Stern said...

Will, your life and Brenda's life have just gone down two different paths. Evidentelly there are a lot of resentments that have been unresolved....

Maybe, by being apart, both of you will be able to tackle this better. God will heal you if you give him a chance.