I had been cheated on. Abandoned with two baby boys. Left poor and used. Rejected for someone more beautiful. This is my story of forgiveness.
My ex-husband and I met at a wedding. I was the chief bridesmaid and he was the best man, it almost felt like destiny. He was charming. More than charming, he was intriguing… fascinating to me. Somehow, he persuaded my father to let me go out with him. I was completely swept off of my feet. He dropped me home past my curfew that night and my father was infuriated. Looking back now, God did try to protect me through my father, but I couldn’t help myself. He was the first man I held hands with. He was the first man to ever kiss me. I was in love.
I started sneaking out to see him every night.
In my heart I wanted a marriage with someone I could grow old with and love forever, and I convinced myself that he could be the one. When he proposed to me, I hid it from my father. Every night I took the ring off and kept it under my pillow. Finally, the day came that I couldn’t hide from my father anymore. I told him what had happened and he told me he was not supportive of my relationship. I sobbed and sobbed and told him that I was in love and if I had to elope, I would. Because of my father’s love for me, he still paid for the wedding even though he did not approve.
After 5 years of marriage, the painful reality hit that I could not have children for my husband. I began to feel worthless in my husband’s eyes… and then, I prayed. I asked the Lord for a child and promised that the child would serve Him when he grew up. The Lord granted my request, and my first son was born. All of this time, however my ex-husband went on frequent “business trips.” Later on, I found out that he was really being unfaithful and making trips over to another woman’s home, and not for anything business related.
By the time my second son was born, my ex-husband had already made up his mind that he was leaving for a younger, prettier woman than myself. Needless to say, I was completely devastated.
This was the first man I had given my whole heart to.
This was the man I had given up everything for and built my life around, and he was leaving. After the divorce took place, I was consumed with sorrow. I became sick from the constant grief. I just could not believe that the man who took me from my father’s house and convinced me that he loved me, could just leave like that. I was on the brink of death after his unfaithfulness to me, but the Lord spared my life so that I could raise my children.
I heard the gospel sometime after that, and eventually even became a preacher. As my children grew older, they had a surprising fascination with God. In my heart, I believed that I had finally moved on and had forgiven my husband. One day however, I felt the Lord ask me “Why don’t you pray for your ex-husband?” My initial reaction was one of opposition. It was then I realized that I hadn’t truly forgiven. “Haven’t I commanded you to love your enemies?” God said to me. At that point, I broke down crying. As I started to pray for my ex-husband, I felt chains breaking off of my life. I realized that if I didn’t forgive, I would be hurting Jesus.
That hurt me because I grew to be so in love with Jesus.
I now saw Jesus as my husband. So, I prayed. And, I forgave.I forgave because I loved God. God wants us to pray for those who use us and abuse us. After that instance, I saw miraculous breakthroughs, one of which was that I sold my house for more than I bought it for, and moved into a lovely home. I was finally moving on from the lifestyle of poverty that I was left in when my husband moved on.
Forgiveness opens the way to God’s blessings in your life. My ex-husband eventually left the other woman as well. The Lord replaced the feelings of hate I had towards her with compassion. I have forgiven the woman who took my husband, knowing he was married.
The Lord also replaced my passion for my ex-husband with compassion.
I understood now that he didn’t grow up in a stable family and that he didn’t know what love was, and it was hard for him to truly love anyone. The thing was, I was so desperate for love and to be loved, that I depended on my ex-husband. However, God was the one that filled the gap. Truly filled it, til I could overflow. His goodness far outweighs the misdeeds done to me by my ex-husband. I was definitely tempted to say “Your father is dead” when my children asked where he was, but I knew it would not be right in the sight of the Lord.
Today, the Lord has done many things through my life and the life of my children. He has used me to influence and be a light to many people and I am truly thankful. He had a great purpose for my life and I would have missed out on it, had I held on to unforgiveness and bitterness. When I got divorced, I never prayed for the restoration of my marriage, and I told others not to pray for that either. I never remarried because I have considered myself married to Jesus. I also want to add that just because your family is broken, it does not mean that your children have to grow up dysfunctional. My children are not like that because God had a plan. God is so faithful and you just have to believe who you are in Him!
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