Today is one year since I had ‘that’ conversation with my husband. The conversation in which I told him the truth about what had happened and what I wanted to do.
These past few days I’ve been feeling quite overwhelmed by that memory.
I’ve been thinking about what has happened in the time that has passed – the things that have happened in each one of those 365 days.
If you’ve not read my story I believed our marriage was over and I wanted to be with someone else. However I agreed to stay and I told God that He had to be everything to me if I was going to be able to remain in my marriage.
We are still married. It’s been one hell of a year. The depths have been lower than I’d ever been before. And yet, somehow we find ourselves now, standing together in the midst of the rubble. We both caused hurts to the other, and the debris from those hasn’t all been cleared away yet. What we have found is that we can carry on even with all the brokenness around us. It’s not like it was before. We haven’t gone back to ‘normal’. It is very much like a new relationship. A relationship in which we have noticed, acknowledged and accepted the myriad ways in which we are utterly different to each other. A relationship which we come to with baggage and complexity, hurts and sensitivities . A relationship which we have chosen to work at because we believe, even on the days when we don’t feel it, that it is a good place for both of us, and that the family which we have created is a good thing for us to be in together. We have seen each other anew and I have so much admiration and respect for the way my husband has stayed with me this year. He has seen me cry because of hurts caused to me by another. He hasn’t distanced himself. He’s just been there with me. Without words. Because sometimes there really aren’t any. We’ve worked hard at loving each other and God has taken the tiny part that we could do and has magnified it and enhanced it and enabled us to see a miracle take place in our own marriage.
This morning I turned to my bible and read of faces marred with grief, and sad hearts, and true testimony to God’s goodness, and the commentary talked about how so often Christians just tell stories of wonderful moments and overcoming without terrible terrible loss. The commentary asked – what impact has God had on the dark sides of your story? And have you made him smile?
Right at that moment as I sat on my bed I wept, as I heard my Father say ‘Yes’. I may still feel awful about all that has passed, and worried for the future but today I know that 365 days on, and probably on each of those days along the way, as we have put our trust in Him despite the blackness, He has smiled. And today He smiles because this errant daughter is beginning to understand just who He is and how much He loves me.
And so today, however black or joyful your circumstances, whether God feels close or far away, my prayer for you as I write of my struggles and sorrows and amazement at where I am now, is that you also will find the truth of God’s love and will be able to believe with me that:
God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.
Glory to God in the church!
Glory to God in the Messiah, in Jesus!
Glory down all the generations!
Glory through all millennia! Oh, yes!
( Ephesians 3 v 20-21 from The Message)