This article was written a couple of years ago by one of the elders at Agape Fellowship, Samuel Knowles. It is a hard read, but a GREAT read; filled with straightforward wisdom and biblical principles. I highly recommend this for any married couple, engaged couple or a single person considering marriage. A few weeks back we posted Myths 1 through 6 and today we finish up with Myths 7 through 12. May God grant you His Grace as you read…
MYTH #7: THEY HAVE UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS OF ME.
And you have unrealistic expectations that they cannot meet. This is your spouse whom you vowed to love and cherish for better or for worse. These expectations are usually unspoken and almost always misconstrued. It really is best to get these expectations out on the table and discuss them. Your spouse does not know (though you think they should) what it is you want them to do and how you want them to do it. You are going to have to let go of some expectations of yours, but you are also going to have to live up to some of the expectations of your spouse. That’s part of being married.
MYTH #8: OUR SITUATION IS DIFFERENT.
No… it’s not. It is the age old symptom of our sin nature that makes us think of ourselves as the only one going through a particular situation. You are not alone. You may have some degree of variation, but there is nothing new under the sun..nothing. Please don’t take this as saying that your situation isn’t extremely hard, or maybe even truly horrible… or sad, but you cannot fall into the temptation of thinking your situation is special and that’s why you have to divorce. It is a lie, plain and simple.
MYTH #9: WE ARE NOT GOING TO LET THIS AFFECT OUR KIDS.
You simply cannot keep this from devastating your children. I know many friends who grew up in a divorced home. I lived through my parent’s divorce. I can tell you from the testimonies of others, as well as my own, that it is NEVER easy on the children and will always negatively affect them the rest of their lives. They will be divided and torn and respond one of three ways to this division. They will: 1. Follow your example of selfishness and start positioning you against your spouse for personal gain. 2. Look to their friends, and more times than not, their boyfriend/girlfriend for the security and affection they should be getting at home. 3. Feel overwhelming guilt, withdraw from everyone and everything for fear of abandonment, and implode with despair. Yes..it’s that serious. Your divorce will negatively affect your children no matter how hard you try.
MYTH #10: WE ARE GOING TWO DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS.
If it is possible for your legs to go one direction while your torso goes in an entirely different direction, then this myth is actually true. But that is not physically possible, and it should be just as impossible for this to be true with your spouse. I realize that I have said this over and over, but since your vows before God, you are ONE.
Mark 10:8-9 “and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”
If you are going in different directions, you should join your spouse. I hope both spouses read that previous sentence, because that is when it is most effective. There is an exception to this rule and that involves God’s direction. You should not follow your spouse in any direction that is anti-Christ, but that exception cannot be altered one bit from biblical context. Husbands, if you are loving your wives as Christ loves the church, and wives, if you are submitting to your husbands as to the Lord, then you will not be going in different directions.
MYTH #11: I’M NOT IN LOVE ANYMORE.
Marriage is not a tent you crawl into or a pool you swim around in, or a car you drive. You can only stay so long in a tent before it’s uncomfortable. The floor begins to feel hard, the room feels cramped and the air feels stuffy. You can get out of a tent to change your surroundings, stretch your legs and breathe easier. Your marriage is not a tent. You can only stay so long in a pool before it starts getting old. Diving deep gets boring, your skin starts to wrinkle and look old, and you get tired of treading water to stay afloat. You can get out of a pool to rest, dry off, and de-wrinkle. Your marriage is not a pool. You can only drive a car for so many years before it starts to cost more than it’s worth. Your transmission can only be replaced so many times, the paint starts to chip and rust, the heat or ac starts to go out, and it becomes more unreliable after so many years. You trade in your old car and get a newer, faster, prettier car. Your marriage is not a car. It is invaluable. Your love for your spouse goes so much deeper than feelings. It is a commitment to love and cherish, to protect and provide, to nurture and enrich for the rest of your life. Remind yourself of this.
MYTH #12: GOD IS OKAY WITH US… HE KNOWS WE TRIED.
I want to make clear that what I’m about to say in this section does not pertain to your salvation or God’s love for you as His child, but you need to understand that God is NOT okay with your divorce. Honestly, He could care less about your puny efforts to fool your conscience into submission for your selfish desires. I will simply let the word of God speak for itself on this myth.
Malachi 2:14-16 “You cry out, “Why has the Lord abandoned us?” I’ll tell you why! Because the Lord witnessed the vows you and your wife made to each other on your wedding day when you were young. But you have been disloyal to her, though she remained your faithful companion, the wife of your marriage vows. Didn’t the Lord make you one with your wife? In body and spirit you are his. And what does he want? Godly children from your union. So guard yourself; remain loyal to the wife of your youth. “For I hate divorce!” says the Lord, the God of Israel. “It is as cruel as putting on a victim’s bloodstained coat,” says the Lord Almighty. “So guard yourself; always remain loyal to your wife.”
Matthew 19:8 He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so.
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 To the married I give this charge (not I, but the Lord): the wife should not separate from her husband (but if she does, she should remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband), and the husband should not divorce his wife.
Genesis 2:24-25 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
If you have read all of this, I pray that the Lord has touched your heart with renewed strength and resolve to fight for your spouse, your marriage, and your family. May His Love hold you, His presence sustain you, and may His Spirit give you peace in the midst of the war.