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.
The word liminal comes from the Latin word ‘limen’, meaning threshold – any point or place of entering or beginning. A liminal space is the time between the ‘what was’ and the ‘next.’ It is a place of transition, a season of waiting, and not knowing.
Author and Franciscan friar Richard Rohr describes this space as:
where we are betwixt and between the familiar and the completely unknown. There alone is our old world left behind, while we are not yet sure of the new existence. That’s a good space where genuine newness can begin. Get there often and stay as long as you can by whatever means possible…This is the sacred space where the old world is able to fall apart, and a bigger world is revealed. If we don’t encounter liminal space in our lives, we start idealizing normalcy.
These thresholds of wondering and not knowing our ‘next’ are inevitable and most are incredibly disruptive. Yet, these spaces are required and necessary for growth that precedes your healing.
From the point where you take that leap of faith until you land on solid ground, it can be scary. It can be lonely. It can be confusing and exhausting.
It is ALWAYS a testimony.
This is the place that scares us. This is the place where our comfort zone has been left for the unknown zone. This is where fear and faith collide to do battle for the future of our life.
Look at the person in the picture above again. Notice a few things about them:
They are looking forward —
Unless you are a diver or playing around near a pool, you look ahead when you leap. You are seeking a place that is in front of you.
Have you ever wondered why God put our eyes on the front of our head? Yes, to look forward. We have to strain to see behind us without a mirror. It should be a struggle to focus on what is already behind us.
God wants us to look at what lies ahead instead of what lies in ruins behind us. You can’t change the past. You can only learn from it and move forward.
They are heading somewhere —
There is movement away from the past towards a new present. A decision was made to embrace change. They trust where they are heading will be better than where they have been, a place of pain.
There is a hope, a desire for more than what has happened to them. A sense of a new beginning that can only happen when they step out in faith.
9 But, as it is written,
“What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,
nor the heart of man imagined,
what God has prepared for those who love him”—
They are not where they used to be —
The space between is not the place of your past. You are not there any more. Rejoice in that!!
You are now residing in a new space. Liminal space is temporary, just like where you may be living right now.
A nice big house may have become a small 2 bedroom apartment either with your children or all by yourself. The house may be the same, but your family may not be there with you.
A negative change in your physical home can become a welcome change in your non-physical home. Your soul can be at rest with His Holy Spirit no matter where you live, in a mansion or in a rescue shelter.
He lives in you. Seeking Him and welcoming Him into your new ‘home’ will mean a closer, more life-giving relationship with the God who will never leave you nor forsake you.
10 And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. And violent men shall afflict them no more, as formerly,
They are above where they will land —
It seems a little odd, but do you notice in the picture the person is higher than where they will end up on the other side? Why is that?
First, it takes strength to jump out in faith. You need to know that God will be your strength and will give you the power to propel away from your past to land in your future. Go for it!!
Second, you can’t just crawl off the faith cliff. You will fall straight down. The person above put physical, mental, and emotional energy into moving out from their past. You can too.
Third, where you are headed will be a foundation for your future. It will be the solid ground where you can stabilize yourself for the journey ahead. Count on it.
13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Will everything be perfect from this point forward? Of course, not. Will everything work out? I hope so. Will it be difficult? Probably. Will it be worth it? DEFINITELY!!
When you thrust your whole being upwards towards the God who created you and loves you, the picture above is where you will be. You will be closer to Him, away from your past, above your problems, and heading towards a solid rock where your new life will begin.
Why does it seem that people don’t care what you are going through?
Have you wondered why so many friends and even family seem to distant themselves from you when they find out you are separated or divorced? Maybe not everyone, but the vast majority of people seem to move further away instead of reaching out to connect with you.
From being on both sides of the issue (twice divorced and in ministry to friends and others), I have realized that a few different issues may be the reason.
People just don’t know what to think or say most of the time. It is similar to when someone passes away and you want to say something but don’t have the words. You don’t want to upset the other person or cause them further pain. The same goes for divorce.
I remember having friends of mine, acquaintances and other church family, that seemed to keep their distance when I was going through my divorces. I had one or two very close friends and family, but it seemed like my whole social circle disappeared.
As I look back, it may not be anything more than something as simple as them being confused on the best way to encourage and help the person going through this difficult season. You don’t want to make things worse or cause further pain so you choose the “wait and see” approach. Maybe they will reach out to you. Then again….
Believe me, I am sure you feel confused at this time so how do you think those around you feel? How can they be of help when you don’t have a firm grasp on yourself and what you need?
Yes, you are not the only one feeling pain.
The relationship you had before brought you friendships and acquaintances that now see a broken relationship. The relationship you had with them as a couple is now a mine field of pain for all involved.
They may not feel like it is the right time to approach you so they hold off. They might rather give you all the space you need when in reality, you really need them now more than ever. They care about you, but they don’t want to be the instrument that may cause you more pain by bringing up your ex or the situation.
This may seem odd, but some people may not be a true friend or a person that really cares about who you really are. This is the time when true friendships rise to the occasion.
Some people feel like it may just be easier to not give anything to your relationship with them because it would just be easier for them. They feel like they will say hi if they see you on the street, but they are unwilling to see the benefit in investing in a friendship or relationship with you any more.
That may seem harsh, but this is a time when real relationships are deepened and shallow relationships fade away. In some ways, this reason may feel like a bandage that got ripped of of your friendship. It will hurt more earlier, but in the long run it may be the best for everyone.
So now what?
It is all up to you.
Is it really that simple?
Maybe, maybe not. That is what I think though.
Forgive them, for they know not what they do. Of course, that is what Jesus said on the cross, but it applies here too.
Only you can know when the right time is to talk about your divorce and your feelings. You have the ultimate control. You can get help and reach out to others, or not. You can ignore that text or call, or you can answer it. It is up to you.
There is a time when you don’t want others to bother you, but that is the last thing you need to do for an extended period of time. Isolation leads to many wrong decisions, thoughts, and actions. It is okay to quiet yourself and process, but processing is an action word that leads to a conclusion.
You can’t live in process. Don’t just sit alone and keep going over the same things over and over and over and over and….. you get the picture. That is not a process. That is immobilization. You are allowing your circumstances to cause you to stop living your life.
You have a choice to reach out or to isolate. You have the choice to take time to process and then get help, or you can just hold on to the baggage as you waste another day of your life wondering how things are going to get better.
If I am coming across a little harsh, I am sorry. I do not mean to, but sometimes we all need a word that wakes us up a little. Sometimes all it takes is the right word to make us rethink and take action when we don’t feel like it.
Life is going to go on without you. You have a life that means more than you may ever understand. You have a purpose and a reason to move forward into healing, even if you just take a baby step here and there.
People want to reach out, but they usually don’t know what to say. People want to help if they can, but they don’t want you to feel more pain. People want to encourage you and lift you up in prayer, but it is just easier to pray from afar than to be present in the flesh.
If you don’t have a couple of very good close friends that you can talk to, find some. You will need them. Reach out to a pastor or Christian counselor. Reach out to a Care Ministry or join a DivorceCare group. Most of all, know that there ARE people that want to be there for you, even if it is just to give you a shoulder to cry on or an open ear to listen to you.
People care, it just may not seem like that right now. Find the ones who REALLY care, those who will be there for you through thick and thin. Let God use them to give you a hug, a kind word, and a friendship that will stand the test of time.
Earlier this week, I called a friend I know is on his way to divorce. I just felt that I needed him to know that if he wanted to talk, I would be there for him. That was it. Just someone to listen to him. A lot of time, that is all we need. Someone to listen. I told him I would be praying for him and we could grab lunch soon. He really appreciated it and wants to do lunch soon.
Let people be the hands and feet of God for you at this time. He is there for you. Usually it is through another person. Reach out and let others reach you. It does hurt, but it gets better.
I know how it feels to wonder if anyone cares, and that is why I reach out. My prayer is that someone reaches out to you and you let them be there for you.
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.
When I started this blog years ago, I never knew that it would reach all over the world and help so many special people. Each and every one of them (including YOU) has been a blessing from God to encourage me to continue helping people that need healing from divorce.
And now, I would love your help!!
I believe that God is leading me to create a new YouVersion Bible App Reading Plan. I have been blown away by how many people have responded to the other two plans I created (as of today, over 137,000). I give God all of the glory and a huge thank you to YouVersion for allowing me to just be a small part of the healing process that He is doing in their lives. I am extremely humbled.
Soooooooo, what next?
I WOULD LOVE YOUR HELP!!
I know that you may not be ready to share about your divorce situation, and I am totally fine with that. If you are not, you may skip the rest of this post. Feel free to check out any of the other posts I have on this blog. May they give you the help and direction you need during this time in your life. Check back soon because I will be creating another new blog post soon and would love to know what you think.
If you are at a point where I could ask you to suggest topics for my next Reading Plan, I would LOVE for you to help me out.
TITLE: (pending) DIVORCE TO HEALING: THE FIRST 7 DAYS
REQUEST: In as much detail as you feel willing to share; describe the first 7 days of your divorce and what helped you out the most in those 7 days? Can you narrow it down to a few different topics? Are there specific feelings of fear, regret, anger, etc.. that dominated that time? Looking back, if you had a Reading Plan offering assistance during that time, what 7 things would have given you the most help during those first 7 days?
I know this may not be something you feel comfortable to share, and I totally understand. I just wanted to give you an opportunity to share, if you feel like God has gotten you to a point where you are willing to help others with your experience.
Go ahead and leave your thoughts in the comments. If you would like to share, but would only like to share with me in private, go ahead and send me a personal email at email@example.com and I will keep your comments between us.
Ask God what He would have you share. You may have an insight that could change the life for someone just like you, a person forever changed by the pain of divorce.
I want to say thank you in advance. I know this may be tough for some people. God has brought some of you to a place where you are ready to share your thoughts. He has given you a testimony in how He has helped you gain wisdom and peace through your healing process. Now is a great time to share your thoughts.
Thank you all for taking a few moments to give me a greater look into what it takes to handle the first 7 days of a divorce. I don’t take it lightly. I appreciate each and every one of you.
I am sure many of you have questions on what the bible says about divorce and remarriage. So many people have heard bits and pieces of verses, taken verses out of context, or just try to make God’s word fit to justify a decision.
Below I would like to share some resources I have reviewed recently. I will share a little at the end of my opinion on the material and the sources.
The two episodes I reviewed were:
#316: Divorce and Remarriage in the Old Testament
#318: Divorce and Remarriage in the New Testament
Both of these podcast episodes have just recently been released near the end of March 2020.
These episodes do dig deep into the Greek & Hebrew texts and they are on the academic side. For some they may seem rather scholarly, but follow along with the verses shared in your bible to help bring God’s word to life through this study.
Two books that the guest (Rev Dr David Instone-Brewer) referred to:
Marriage and Divorce in the Bible by Jay E Adams
Marriage and Divorce in the Church by Jay E Adams.
Dr Instone-Brewer has also created a website called Divorce-Remarriage.com that provides a lot more to consider on this topic. I have not researched the whole website, but the quick summary of the two books mentioned above is posted below and can be of great value:
This book interprets the words of Jesus and Paul through the eyes of first century readers who knew about the ‘Any Cause’ divorce which Jesus was asked about (“Is it lawful to divorce for ‘Any Cause’” – Mt.19.3). Christians in following generations forgot about the ‘Any Cause’ divorce and misunderstood Jesus.
The ‘Any Cause’ divorce was invented by some Pharisees who divided up the phrase “a cause of indecency” (Dt.24.1) into two grounds for divorce: “indecency” (porneia which they interpreted as ‘Adultery’) and “a cause” (ie ‘Any Cause’). Jesus said the phrase could not be split up and that it meant “nothing except porneia“. Although almost everyone was using this new type of divorce, Jesus told them that it was invalid, so remarriage was adulterous because they were still married.
|The Old Testament allowed divorce for the breaking of marriage vows, including neglect and abuse, based on Exod.21.10f. Jesus was not asked about these biblical grounds for divorce, though Paul alluded to them in 1Cor.7 as the basis of marriage obligations. This book argues that God never repealed these biblical grounds for divorce based on broken marriage vows. They were exemplified by Christ (according to Eph.5.28f) and they became the basis of Christian marriage vows (love, honour, and keep).|
Of course, I highly suggest that you counsel with your pastor or care ministry that can give you additional help and direction in this difficult time. Don’t take this as any final answer. God will give you His wisdom as you seek it with those around you that will lead you to God and His word on the subject.
When all is said and done, you and you alone will be held accountable for your decisions and actions surrounding divorce and remarriage. This is just a good starting point to help you as you seek God and His face on your next step.
How in the world can you handle all of the craziness of a global pandemic, with all of the demands on your family from homeschooling and mask-making to locating toilet paper and working from home (or being laid off)? Now add the stress and logistics of a divorce to the mix? How on earth can anyone even ATTEMPT to handle all of this?
If anyone has the answers, they are lying!!!
SO, why should I even attempt to write down my thoughts on this subject?
I am no disease specialist. I do not have a degree in epidemiology. I am no way an economist, front line healthcare worker, governmental representative, or even a counselor.
What I am is a person who has been where you are; having to deal with too much stuff while trying to navigate my life and attempting to heal from a divorce.
It would be a monumental feat for me to share practical and redundant information on COVID-19. That is why your local, state, and national governmental bodies were created. From the CDC to your local doctors and healthcare professionals, they can give you the best information on anything and everything you need to know on the virus.
What they cannot do is speak to you about what really matters; the health of your soul.
With all that is going on, the health of your soul is the most important thing, in my opinion.
In my own hometown, calls to the police for domestic violence are up 20% over last year for last month (March 2020). While many families are coming closer together during this difficult time, many others are fighting and hurting each other at an alarming rate.
Our souls (mind, will, and emotions) are hurting, confused, and just plain tired. They are being torn down by so many different factors, not the least being our financial situations, the media, elderly parents that won’t stay at home, or our own family getting on our nerves.
For the most part, what is attacking our souls is not something physical. It is our own thoughts and fears about what is currently going on and what is to come. It is being attacked by our thoughts towards one another and not knowing where the next paycheck is coming from.
These are all valid and need to be acknowledged, but they need to be retaliated against. Just not in a physical way.
You never attack the wind with a sword. The wind comes and goes as it pleases. It changes direction and intensity at will. We can try to predict how strong it will be and from what direction, but even that is futile at times.
So how do you handle the “wind” coming against you?
You put up a wind turbine and allow the wind to create energy for you!!
Just like fire, wind can do good and do bad. It can destroy a building itself by crushing it with a large tree. It can cause waves that crash upon a dike that may break and flood whole communities. Wind can carry debris during a hurricane or tornado that could cause death and destruction beyond our wildest imaginations.
It can also provide electricity when driving the blades of a huge wind turbine. It can propel a sailboat through a beautiful channel of islands in the Caribbean. It can bring refreshing on a hot day as you lay by a pool, reading a book.
The wind of circumstance for both the pandemic and divorce have 2 things in common; it can bring forth death & destruction or it can bring peace and energy to move forward.
So how can you protect your soul during this time of corona virus and divorce?
(1) Find a hiding place
We have all heard of the social distancing and stay at home orders. It works for the spread of the virus.
When you are needing a hiding place for your soul during divorce, find it in the person of Jesus and His word (the bible).
Psalm 32:7 You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. Selah (Pause. Take a moment and let the passage above speak to you)
A hiding place allows you protection as well as giving you a place to gain strength for what is to come next. It is in our hiding place where we can either grow or fall apart. It is all a decision on how you address the time and how you use that time while you are there.
(2) Be cautious
Wear a mask. Stay 6 feet away from other people. Do not be in a group of more 10 people.
When divorce becomes a part of our lives, we need to be careful who we hand around. Family can be as much of a hindrance as a help, if they are not speaking life to you. Doing things and going places with those who just want to make you “feel good’ only cause more damage and destruction for your soul.
Spend time with Godly people, those willing to speak life and not death to you and your situation. Pastors, counselors (Christian or Christian-friendly), friends, and family that encourage you to seek God are the ones that will feed our soul instead of tearing it down.
God will protect you and provide the wisdom you need during this time in ways you may never ever know. Only days, month and years down the road may you see how following God’s ways have kept you from harm and helped your soul heal.
3) Plan to come out
With wisdom from the healthcare and business professionals, we will emerge from the isolation from this pandemic. It needs to be a plan with much consideration for the health of all people and our country as a whole.
There will come that day when your soul will be able to move forward with God’s help and wisdom. It will be a time of uncertainty and apprehension, but He will be with you every step of the way, if you let Him.
I know that this verse is one of the most quoted verses in the Bible, but I felt it fit better than all of the others. God does have a plan for you. Your challenge is to bring your soul in alignment with that plan. From there, God will guide you out in wisdom and with peace.
4) Walk in faith
The day is coming soon (if it hasn’t already) when we will be asked to leave our isolation and return to work, return to school, and return to living lives outside of our homes. It may look different for quite a while, yet we need to move on with what needs to be done to move forward.
Our soul will grow stronger as we exercise it; moving out from our hiding place into the next chapter in our life. God will give you the strength and encouragement to move on. You may not think you are ready (usually nobody thinks that), but God is calling you out into His marvelous light.
Another popular verse, yet it so relevant to our situation. When we step out after divorce, we can’t see what will happen. We have no idea how things may turn out, but I know how does.
He is the One who is, who was, and who is to come. He knows the beginning from the end, not just for all of humanity, but for you!!
He knows you intimately and can see what you cannot see. Walk with Him in faith as He shows you all that He is doing for you now.
Step out, holding His hand as you are encouraged with the support of Godly friends and family. He will be there for you, no matter what.
My prayer for you is that you find Jesus through all of this in a new and healthy way. May His healing power heal our bodies and our souls during this difficult time.
If you are interested in any free resources (book for sale, if desired) to help you as you proceed through the healing process of divorce, here are a couple of Reading Plans I wrote for the YouVersion Bible App.
The links to those plans and my book are below:
(Dedicated to my friend and brother, Jerry Arney)
When we lose someone, a lot of times we just don’t know what to do next. We don’t know what to say. We don’t know how to act or even feel.
Loss of a marriage is like the death of a friend or loved one in a lot of ways. It is a life leaving us to make sense of what has happened and move on. It forces us to deal with thoughts and emotions that we avoid at all costs. Who wants to experience that?
Today, a very good friend of mine who has been sick for almost 3 years passed away. His name is Jerry Arney and he was someone who I loved as a brother and friend very much. I always will. I will never forget him, though life moves on and eventually I will not give him much thought, and I absolutely hate that. Sorry, Jerry, but that is the human life.
We are usually consumed by what is happening at the moment. Time makes it imperative to deal with what is going on today, which causes us to push the past into the back of our minds. It sucks, but that is what happens.
When it comes to the loss of a marriage, the pain eventually subsides and the business of life, children, a job, friends, and new events require us to have to focus on them. It pushes the past back a little more each day and is a large part of the healing process.
When that happens, it doesn’t say anything about that person you lost or the marriage that did not last. It had a life and it hurts when it is gone.
When I spend less time time thinking about Jerry, it doesn’t take anything away from the relationship I had with him. We shared and invested in our friendship and it means something. The same is with a marriage. It mattered and you invested so much into it, and yet it is gone.
When I think of Jerry, I am going to do my best to remember the good times. We spent a lot more time in a hospital praying and talking than we ever did outside of it. The bad times happened, but I am going to remember how even as he suffered pain and disappointment, he had a love for Jesus that I will always be jealous of.
He knew that someday, he would be healed one way or the other. One day the pain would be gone. And tonight it is gone.
My pain is getting more intense. I miss my friend and brother, I miss his love for his family and God. I miss his love for others, those he shared love with on the the streets and in the detox centers where he ministered to those most people have given up on. But God will help me and carry me during this time. He has before, and he will again.
You have lost a marriage, and it hurts. It hurts bad. You will miss some things that where amazing. You will miss the person that you married, the one who said for better or for worse. You didn’t marry the person you they are now. You lost someone totally different.
The last time I saw Jerry, I knew he was getting tired. He shared many things with me to make me realize now that he had become a different person from the one I first met and grew to love as a fellow man in ministry. He still loved & trusted in the Lord, but his human body was dying.
Your marriage was not the same at the end as it was in the beginning. You wanted it to be different, to be like it was when you first got married, but eventually it died.
So where does that leave us?
As I mourn my friend and brother, I will cling to Jesus, the one who is the answer for my broken heart. He is the only one who can heal it. And he will. I will eventually be able to look back and remember the good times we had, all the wonderful fellowship, and the time spent with our Savior.
As you mourn your marriage, cling to Jesus!! He loves you with an everlasting love. He is the only one who can give you the wisdom, peace, and joy to move forward each and every day. It will get easier. I promise. As you let Him lead and hold you, He will give you a peace that will surpass anything you could ever imagine.
Eventually we will both look back and it won’t hurt like it does now. We may have a scar and a tenderness when we remember, yet it will not stop us from being better. God has plans for both of us. Walk with me as we both move forward with Him.
RIP Jerry Arney
What do you do when you look at your marriage, family, or home and all you see is a pile of rubble? Do you just want to cry and give up? Is it even worth the time and effort to do anything but just leave and never look back?
Jesus knows. He sees you right there in the midst of the decay and destruction. He wants you to know that He knows. He saw what happened. He knows how it happened. He knows how you feel. He wants to walk through all of this with you.
Allstate says ” You’re in good hands with Allstate”.
State Farm says, “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there”.
Good marketing, lousy counseling.
God says, “I will never leave you, nor forsake you”. Heb 13:5b
God says, “And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you”. Psalm 9:10
I suggest you jump into the arms of Jesus and know that God is always with you, not just until a claim is paid and your rates go up.
Healing from divorce and separation is not a simple 10 step plan to wellness. A fancy flowchart is not going to make you feel any better.
You are on a journey that is unlike any other’s journey that has ever experienced a breakup. You may or may not have children. You may or may not have been the cheater or the one that was cheated on. Every relationship and divorce is different.
It is hard telling you what to do next. I don’t know what specifics you would tell me about your situation if we could chat over an Orange Ginger Herbal Tea at Panera. (Very good!!)
First, I would give you a hug. So many times, all people need is someone to be the physical expression of Jesus giving you a shoulder to cry on and a gentle hug to make you know that someone cares.
Second, I would listen to you. I would let you get it all out. Tell me how horrible that %@$!^#%@ is and how they have made your life a living hell. I would be patient and actively engage you as you explain your side of the story. You need to tell it in a safe and protected environment, getting a release from some of the pressure you feel.
Third, I would want you take stock of what you have and the blessings you still enjoy today. Right now, you are breathing, and whether you realize it or not, that is a miracle!! God wants you to live and to experience His love while you move through this difficult time. You still have purpose and a reason to be here on earth. If you have a roof over your head, a job, children, and other family and friends to be around, then you have something a lot of people do not have.
Fourth, I would suggest whatever professional help you need, even if it’s just a few discussions with a pastor or someone in a care ministry at your local church. See a therapist (preferably a Christian) that understands not just the mental issues that you are facing, but can address everything from a perspective of your spiritual well-being as well. We are a 3-part being; spirit, soul, and body God’s perspective is beyond human knowledge. Why wouldn’t you ask for His help?
Fifth, I would encourage you to be around other positive, Godly people who will tell you the truth in love and walk this road with you. It is hard to hear hard things about us sometimes, but a true friend that hurts a little is better that someone telling you half truths and just wants to tell you what you want to hear.
Sixth, I would help you to discover a simple, inexpensive stress reliever (not drugs or alcohol). Maybe start using adult coloring books, learn cross-stitching, grab a fishing pole and find a new fishing spot, read a book instead of watching tv, take up gardening, volunteer at church or in the community, or anything else that will occupy your mind on something other than what you tend to stress about.
Seventh, I would encourage you to start dreaming again. It may seem strange and you may not feel like it, especially now, but if you aren’t looking forward to something positive, you will naturally sink back or remain stuck where you are. Don’t be the nation of Israel and keep going around the same mountain for 40 years. Trust in God’s Word and have faith in Him as He leads you to a new land that will be beyond what you could ever imagine.
Eighth, I need you to be realistic. You can’t change the past. You can’t make someone love you. You can’t force someone to do something they don’t want to do. People can be hurtful, destructive, and absolutely crazy. That includes you and me. We are all human. You may never know why. You may never fully understand how God is going to make anything good come from this. That is okay. It is not your job to know everything, but it is your responsibility to lean on Jesus and allow His Holy Spirit to fill in the gaps.
Ninth, I would pray for you out loud, placing a hand on your shoulder while I ask the God of the universe to come and invade your life. I would ask Him to bring His Holy Spirit to dwell inside of you, filling the empty spaces and flowing through every part of your spirit, soul, and body. I would pray that you are refreshed, renewed, and made new each day as the sun rises.
Tenth, I would tell you the most important thing that I can ever tell anyone experiencing separation and divorce; nothing YOU can ever say or do can ever make you whole. NOTHING. Only God and a growing relationship with Him through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus can bring the peace, comfort, healing, love, joy, fulfillment, forgiveness, and life that will bring you a total and complete wholeness. Everything else is only a simple, partial, fractured feeling of relief until you fully understand the depth of love God has for you.
Don’t settle for anything less than what God has for you.
Accept His love. Accept His open arms. Accept His grace and mercy. Accept Jesus.
I created 31 short prayer videos. They are based on the 31 topics taken from the Divorce to Healing: 31 Days of Healing and Wholeness book and reading plan. Feel free to join me as I pray for you on any of those specific issues or topics. Use this link to go to my YouTube channel.
What do you know? Maybe there is a 10 step plan….
What is a tear?
Lamentations 1:16 (ESV)
16 “For these things I weep;
my eyes flow with tears;
for a comforter is far from me,
one to revive my spirit;
my children are desolate,
for the enemy has prevailed.”
Does God even care?
Psalm 42:3 (ESV)
3 My tears have been my food
day and night,
while they say to me all the day long,
“Where is your God?”
How can I go on?
Lamentations 3:49-50 (ESV)
49 “My eyes will flow without ceasing,
50 until the Lord from heaven
looks down and sees;
A tear is made up of 4 basic ingredients; water, salt, antibodies, and lysozyomes.
We all know that our tears are made up of water and salt. But they are made up of far more than that. Antibodies are disease fighters and lysozyomes are antibacterial enzymes. Without these two crucial ingredients, irritants and germs can cause you severe problems with your sight as well as other mental and physical issues. You may not be able to see correctly while you get more frustrated physically and emotionally because of the pain and discomfort.
Have you ever cried so hard and so long that you leave wet stains on everything around you as your heart breaks, your soul hurts and nothing seems to help you, but all you can do is to let it flow, snot & all?
I have been there. I remember laying face down on my carpet crying uncontrollably for at least 30 minutes; no Kleenex and no way to stop. It seemed like hours. The pain. The hurt. The despair.
God created you. And in you is a way to healing with all the ingredients needed. It is called a tear.
Water is what carries the healing ingredients. It is essential for life. 55-60% of the human body is made up of water and every living cell needs it to keep functioning. The maximum time an individual can go without water seems to be a week, but the most typical time frame is only 3-4 days. You see how vital water is to our existence, physical and spiritual!!
John 4:13-14 (ESV)
13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Salt is an essential nutrient that the body uses to regulate many bodily functions and is contained within body fluids that transport oxygen and other nutrients. It is also essential in maintaining the body’s overall fluid balance. Without salt, your body cannot correctly use the life-giving water that your body needs for life. Salt in the Bible speaks of value. It was used to purify and preserve, and as a way to establish a deeper relationship with others through the consumption of it. Salt values, purifies, and preserves the relationship with the water.
Numbers 18:19 (ESV)
19 All the holy contributions that the people of Israel present to the Lord I give to you, and to your sons and daughters with you, as a perpetual due. It is a covenant of salt forever before the Lord for you and for your offspring with you.”
Antibodies are crucial for the body to fight off disease and toxins. What is in our body that needs to die for life to continue must be destroyed, and antibodies do that. We have things inside all of us that need to die, physically and spiritually. For life to continue, we need to constantly battle anything that is not beneficial for us and the health of the whole body.
2 Samuel 22:40 (ESV)
40 For you equipped me with strength for the battle;
you made those who rise against me sink under me.
Lysozyomes do their part for the body by digesting and eliminating that which the antibodies conquer. The trash, disease, excess and waste are chewed up and then sent packing. Our body cannot be fully healthy if what has been defeated and used up is not removed for good. Just think of all the physical and spiritual good that has been done to bring health to the body. For us to live, it must be discarded and removed completely.
Hebrews 12:1 (ESV)
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
You may be wondering why I went to all the trouble to break down a tear.
Your tears matter and your tears mean something. They speak volumes. They hold hopes, dreams, and relationships that you valued. And God knows. He knows you are hurting. He wants to give you His shoulder to cry on and His arms to hold you at this time.
Psalm 56:8 (ESV)
8 You have kept count of my tossings (wanderings);
put my tears in your bottle.
Are they not in your book?
Through your tears, God is bringing forth life; carrying breath and strength (water) that purifies and preserves His relationship with you (salt) while defeating inside your soul the disease that is killing you (antibodies) as you digest and eliminate it (lysozyomes).
Your healing is inside of you. Let go and let God do His healing work in you that needs to spring forth through His glorious living waters.
My next post will share what happens to your tears.