A song for any of you who are struggling with why…
From one of my favorite bands ever, 7eventh Time Down.
Let them know how the song has encouraged you and helped you out.
A song for any of you who are struggling with why…
From one of my favorite bands ever, 7eventh Time Down.
Let them know how the song has encouraged you and helped you out.
Why does God allow suffering? Is God just? Does God rule this world with true justice? Why do bad things happen to good people?
We all have these questions sometime in our lives. As someone dealing with divorce, you may be questioning these right now.
One of the most unique books of the Bible is Job. It is known for it’s teaching on suffering.
I could give you a bunch of encouraging words, anecdotes, feel-good methods, and applications when it comes to suffering. I will choose instead to point you to this video.
If you are struggling with suffering and just need questions like those above answered, take just 11 minutes and watch this. It is an overview of the whole book of Job from The Bible Project. It can do in 11 minutes what most preachers and counselors would take weeks to convey.
The end of the video does help describe how to process suffering and leads us to lean into God through prayer and faith.
After you watch the video, feel free to let me know in the comments your thoughts, feelings, or just let me know if it helped you. I would love to hear from you.
Here is a more question and answer/simpler version. More story telling. 7 minutes.
Think about a triangle. Any triangle. It may have different lengths and odd angles. It may be large or small. It may look different to each person, depending on how they look at it. Yet, there are certain characteristics of a triangle that each one has that are the same:
There is a point in our life when things become extremely difficult and life-changing like divorce. There needs to be a change. We need to move away from that point. We need to create movement away from that specific point.
It is not easy. It takes energy and a decision to move forward. But what direction do I need to move? What if I head in the wrong direction?
I may present an unpopular point here, and I may take a little flack with it, but I think in the end it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that you move away from that point, in ANY direction.
Make a decision to move on, and then start moving.
Think about how you would draw a triangle. You start with your pen or pencil on a specific point and than you move away from that point in a straight line. Just get moving. Go. Move away from it. It is time to leave that point, and it starts with the decision and movement.
Create the first side of your healing triangle.
But you may ask, what if I head in the wrong direction? Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter. What actually matters is that you start creating something new. Get moving.
When do you stop moving in that direction? It is different for everyone.
Just like every triangle can look different, so will your triangle. If you want that first side to be long to get as far away as you can from the specific point you are leaving, that is fine.
Sometimes the hurt and pain will cause you to head in a certain direction longer that others. You are on a journey that is meant only for you. You are unique and your healing will look different than anyone else’s healing.
There will come a time when you get tired of just moving away from that painful time in your life. You will realize that you are far enough away and it is time to make a shift. It may be to the left, it may be to the right.
Does it matter which way I turn? Again, it is your decision.
At this new point, it DOES matter which way you turn. You have to turn. You can’t just keep running away from that painful point.
You will come to the realization that if you just keep running from it, you will never be able to heal from it. You must be able to see that point from a different perspective. You need to start creating the second side of your healing triangle, and you must choose to turn right or left.
There are only two directions to choose from, right or left. Which direction will you take?
One direction leads you in a positive direction, one that will lead you to seek what good can come from your current situation. The other direction leads you in negative direction, one that will lead you down a path of negativity and an unhealthy mindset towards what happened and where you will ultimately end up.
Don’t make that decision without truly understanding which way you should turn. It will make a world of difference in the rest of your life. How will you heal from that point in your life that you would rather forget about and put behind you?
It does matter which way you turn. You will understand in a minute, how important this decision is and how it will change your whole life moving forward.
You are creating your first angle with this turn. Here is your next decision and another specific point in your life. It will change the direction of your life.
Choose Jesus. Choose the path towards the only one who can help you make sense of what happened. Choose the direction towards understanding and peace. Trust me. It is the best direction.
Yet, the decision is yours. When you truly see how much your life will be affected by taking the positive direction and how your healing triangle comes together, you will look back at this next specific point where you shifted your direction and be thankful you did.
You are now heading in a new direction. What kind of angle did you take?
A triangle is created by 3 angles and 3 sides.
The angle determines two things:
Think about your healing triangle again. You are now creating that second side. You have committed to a change of direction, but at what angle?
Are you still heading away from that painful point in your life? Are you still running? Are you moving sideways, not wanting to hurt, but realizing that you need to stop running so you can address the pain before losing any more time?
Did you realize that the only way to move on is to take a sharp angle towards the understanding and truth that Jesus has for you? Do you trust Him and not yourself for the healing? The sharper the angle towards God will bring greater healing in a shorter time frame.
You can decide how long your healing will take by how sharp of an angle you take towards God and the healing He has for you.
Think about it. If you take a shallow angle and just put a little faith and commitment into your healing, you will end up having a much longer way to travel back to complete your healing triangle.
In order to complete a triangle, the second side leads to the second angle. That second angle is what you need to head towards completing your triangle.
The first angle determines your second angle.
The length of the second side (time spent before creating your second angle) is also a choice. How long do you want your second side to be? Everyone’s healing triangle is unique. It does take time. Don’t sweat it. Everyone’s healing times are different. Just don’t take forever to make your final decision. You will never complete your triangle until you do.
There will come that time when you are ready to look back at your original starting point because you want to complete your healing triangle, the healing process.
Here is where all of your decisions up to this point (the length of the first side, your decision to turn left or right, degree of that first angle, the length of the second side) all factor into the next step.
As you look back at that painful point in your life, you need to go back there to complete your healing triangle. Let me explain:
You need to be able to see what happened to you from a different perspective.
Your first angle determines how far you still have to go to complete your triangle. It also determines how sharp of an angle you now need to take in order to complete your triangle as well.
How long you took until you decided to turn (your second side) and face your past with a new perspective determines how much more time you have to complete your triangle.
Are you ready? Have you decided it is time to address the pain from a new perspective?
Let’s back up to your first angle: Did you take right turn? Did you choose the correct direction to turn? Are you heading back towards your painful past with understand, truth, and peace you received in the healing process from God? Did you make the wrong turn?
Before you finally connect the dots and complete your triangle, make sure you are seeing your pain through the grace, mercy, love, acceptance, healing, peace, and understanding of the only one who can heal a broken heart :Jesus!!
If you took the wrong turn, that is ok. Stop. Turn back. Return to where you made the wrong decision and create a new angle. Do it more than once if needed.
You need to see your pain from a positive direction with the eyes of God if you are ever going to fully and completely be healed from your pain. Trust me. It is the only way you will fully be able to move on without the baggage and unresolved issues that divorce or other painful event has caused you.
Did you take a positive, Godly angle when you were done running? Are you ready to complete your triangle?
Realize that whatever angle you took and the length of time you spent before making your second angle doesn’t really matter in the scheme of healing. It may add time and some uncomfortable times before you complete, but you are doing it; YOU ARE HEALING!!
Make the decision to head back to that painful point. With your new Godly perspective, make your second angle and connect the dots.
See your pain through God’s eyes. You can’t change it. It happened. It was painful.
As you complete your triangle, it may still hurt, but as you close your triangle know that healing is being completed. It may not feel like it, but it is. God is healing you. You decided how long and at what angles your healing took, but God brought you back here; to the point of your pain.
Complete your triangle. Let God hold your hand as you complete it. Ask Him to heal you completely as you trust Him to finish the work.
It is ok to shed tears. It is ok to still not understand why. It is ok. You will be ok.
You took the angle that led towards God and brought you back to the most painful point of your life with a fresh, Godly perspective; one that includes truth, peace, and understanding.
You are healed. Thank Him for healing you.
Give God the glory as you now move forward into all that He has for you.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” — Romans 8:28
Day 8: “Perspective” God’s perspective is the one you need. All the help and counsel in the world will fall short if you can’t see your situations through God’s eyes.
It is amazing what can happen when we least expect it. Just a few days ago, it happened to me once again. When I wasn’t even watching or paying attention, it came in the blink of an eye.
Times in my life I have wondered why “this”, why “that”, or why “now”. As a Christian, I have learned that I need to spend that time wisely. To live in the past is not wise, but to learn from it in a healthy way is beneficial.
Looking back, I have learned that to have a healthy perspective on events, good or bad, is what can set you up for a better future. A divorce is one of the hardest events to ever occur in someone’s life. Learning from mistakes, taking responsibility for consequences, and growing through heartbreak is meant to be a process, not a destination. If you can’t move on, decide right now that you WILL move on and then get whatever help you need to do it.
When I went through my first divorce, the saying that God gave me was “Jesus and I are movin’ on”. This implied action and decision on my part. I could have resisted. I could have let myself spiral into vices or self-pity, and there was as a time I thought those would help. They didn’t.
What ultimately brought me out of the ‘funk’ was knowing that Jesus was by my side, no matter what, and that He loved me unconditionally. Friends and family were around to encourage me, even if they didn’t know what to say or they said the wrong things. I know they cared about me as a person. I wasn’t in this alone.
It changed my perspective.
Back in 2016, God impressed on me (and literally dragged me) to finish a Divorce to Healing reading plan for the YouVersion Bible App. The Bible App is one of the most downloaded apps all over the world. It is literally the bible in your hand. They also include reading plans or devotionals that can help people grow closer to God. This is what I was supposed to do.
I needed to create 31 different days on different topics. I was stuck on about Day 17 for a few months. I wasn’t motivated any more to finish it, but God lovingly convinced me to be obedient.
In 2017, God gave me a desire to do a shorter 7 day plan to compliment the first plan. It allowed people to have a shorter devotional that they could complete quickly and give them a desire to download the longer 31 day plan. And now, I am just humbled beyond belief.
Today (Jan 26, 2018) is a huge day for the ministry of Divorce to Healing. God told me to help people through the divorce process. At times, I didn’t know what to say or do. I just needed to do something.
As of today, “Divorce to Healing: 31 Days of Healing and Wholeness” and “Divorce to Healing: Survive and Thrive” have been completed over 25,000 times. They been downloaded over 55,000 times. I don’t know what to say. All I want to do is cry.
Behind every one of the downloads is a soul. Behind every completion is a story.
Every one of these numbers humble me. It makes me long to know that those reading plans have made a difference, even for a moment. I wonder how those precious people are doing, even months and years after using the plans. Then God gave me a little more perspective.
On January 13th, 2018, I picked up my phone and saw a notification. It said that this blog had increased traffic that day. I have seen it before and love to know that God is directing people that need help to reach out. Little did I know how many……
On that one day, this blog spiked to 1,845 views. I could literally swipe down to reload the stats and see new people every minute looking at this blog. I wondered why, and figured it was because of people checking out the reading plan. More perspective.
On that same day, 2,457 people downloaded one of the two reading plans. If it was physically able to, my mouth would still be on the floor. Words can’t describe the feeling. Good and bad.
While seeing the work I put in being of value to people, it breaks my heart that people have to go through what I went through. I wish I could just reach out and encourage them.
So this goes out to you all, whether you have just found this blog and the reading plans or have been with us for years. You are not alone. People love you. It gets better. You will survive. You will make it. Jesus and you are movin’ on!!
Thank you for being obedient to God by allowing others, including myself, to speak life to you. I know sometimes the last thing you want to do is to be around anyone. You can’t run or hide from the love Jesus has for you. He will be with you every step of the way.
This is my new perspective: God can even use me, a two-time divorcee, to bring light and love to the world. And He can and will use you too, if you let Him.
I would love to hear from you, however and whenever you feel up to it. Leave me a comment or just a word for me. Pass along your story. It will encourage others at the same time.
I leave you with this:
The blink of an eye is but a moment in time. Eventually, the tear is wiped away and you can see clearly again.
Have you ever had a day where you even wondered why this or that causes you to just lose it? Why can’t a 11 year old daughter remember to grab her lunchbox when she gets out of the car making me drive back to school and interrupt my day causing……..?
Yes, things happen. When it comes to marriage and divorce, we usually have more questions than answers. So much happens that we seem to live in a state of ongoing heartache. You will never get all of your questions answered, so let’s talk.
Have you ever climbed to a very high point, like to a mountain top or a lookout you saw on vacation? It is amazing. You can see in all directions until you see the curve in the earth. It makes all of the things you left below seem so small.
Just like all of our questions, pains, emotions, and stress, a different perspective allows you to refocus on what really is important in life. It gives you a chance to see things from a different angle and give you a new perspective.
Does it mean that everything down below changes? Not at all. It just looks different. Does it mean that anything changes with your issues? No, but how you look at them does. It allows you to see other ways to address them.
28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28
Allowing others to speak life into you and letting God’s Word give you a different set of ‘eyes’ allows you to see things about yourself that will make you stronger and bring forth a change in your approach to your healing.
God, help me to see my struggles and hurdles through Your eyes and give me a heart willing to find Your perspective in all areas of my life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.