This is what I have learned over the last year from watching The Tale of Two Marriages:
• When God is asked to be present within the hearts of people, as broken and messed up as we can be, He changes them. (Ezekiel 36:26)
• When God is permitted to be active within the marriages of His children, He blesses them. After all, He created it. (Genesis 2:18-25)
• When God is honored within the home of those who love Him and are surrendered to Him, He restores what the enemy tries to steal from them. (Joel 2: 25)
When any of these three are lacking, God is not within the hearts, He is not permitted to intervene and He is not honored by surrender, the road to healing and restoration will be difficult, if not impossible.
With these marriages, both couples experienced the betrayal of a spouse. There were lies and secrets, addictions and broken trust. While betrayal causes tremendous pain and damage to any marriage, the steps taken next will determine if repair can be found. For one couple, this involved confession, repentance and turning to Christian counseling for help. It is only a matter of time before the secrets we hide behind begin to unravel in our lives, especially, if we have given our lives to Christ, because God will not be mocked (Galatians 6:7). He is in the business of “…uncovering deep things out of darkness, and bringing the shadow of death to light” (Job 12:22). When He begins to stir conviction within our hearts we can choose to lock up the secret, or let Him uncover it and follow His leading down the path of healing. Confession leads to cleansing; “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
God has also begun the process of changing the heart of the wounded spouse in this marriage as well. Through tears of anger, God was asked to help heal the pain and sorrow, and helped them offer forgiveness to the betrayer. He has. The Lord began to reveal the truth of what it means to forgive, as Christ has forgiven, to the one betrayed. Just reading The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant in Matthew 18: 21-35 can help anyone understand that it is God’s will that we offer the same forgiveness offered to us. It hasn’t been an easy journey and there have been setbacks along the way, however, God has been permitted total access to the marriage and their hearts. They desire His blessing within their marriage, so they surrendered control of their marriage. Grace was extended, forgiveness offered and healing has begun.
The enemy is out to steal, kill and destroy anything that God has created and God created marriage. “And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him”(Genesis 2:18). Hebrews 13:4 reminds us that marriage is honorable and pure. When we fail to recognize the Devil’s tactics of seduction, we quickly can become trapped by his schemes, such as pride. Be careful that you never allow pride to prevent communication within your marriage. Proverbs 18:12 is a good rule to follow; “The heart of a man is proud before he is destroyed, but having no pride goes before honor” (NLV).
While one couple heads to the courts for the dissolution of their marriage, the other “Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise” (Psalm 100:4). Praise and thanksgiving for all that He has done and the work He will complete, as they submit to one another, and the Lord.