Some people have called me crazy. Some people have discouraged me. Some people have told me to focus solely on myself. Some people have simply told me to stop. Stop praying for him.
Makes sense, right? Get angry. Get mad. Toughen up. Focus on yourself. Take him to the cleaners. Fight.
As long as this marriage was legal (even though my ex has been gone for almost half a year), I was going to keep praying. Standing strong. And even after the divorce is finalized in April, I will always pray for his heart.
But Man! How I wish at times I could be that woman-the confident ticked-off man-hater villain with a major attitude and an outfit made of pure steel. Being that way seems like it would be a lot easier-guarding my heart and flashing laser beams at those who have hurt me. However, that's not me. It's not who I am or who I wanted to turn into. Since the betrayal (after searching my own heart, and taking ownership for my shortcomings), I immediately began longing for God to save my husband- from his sins, his terrible decisions, his confusion, his hurt, his insecurities, his issues, and his pride. I was called to stand in the gap for my husband-to pray for him daily.
What have you been called to do during this time? Have you even sat quiet long enough before the Lord to know? Have you asked God what he wants you to do? What he wants you to pray for?
The burdened I carried in my heart for my spouse was truly great and painful-still is even though I've moved on and have pretty much accepted that it is over-that it's been over for a long time. I did find it odd and very strange-actually I felt pretty dang pathetic and weak as a woman. I never understood why I cared so much about him and his salvation and relationship with God. It was so strong that I had physical heartaches when thinking and praying for my wayward spouse. I knew that I had a duty as his wife and the privilege as a Christian to pray for him-to beg God to do whatever he had to do to get his attention, to bring him to his knees, to tear down his walls, to show him love and mercy-to save my spouse from himself and the lies and strongholds of the enemy. I was and am determined to pray until I see my prayers answered-even when of if this divorce becomes final.
"To open their eyes, [and] to turn [them] from darkness to light, and [from] the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." -Acts 26:18I read the story of Hosea. Over. And over. And over. Hosea lost his wife to her continuous rebellion of adultery and a sinful lifestyle. Hosea prayed for his wife. He never stopped. He stood in the gap for her-interceded in prayer for her and never stopped praying. If you need an example of a true relentless stander, read Hosea. Be inspired and humbled.
"The LORD said to [Hosea], "Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another man and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes." -Hosea 3:1The love that Hosea had for Gomer was unconditional. It was crazy to the general population. It was genuine. He loved her as Christ loved her. He saw a woman being deceived by the enemy. He saw a woman who had lost herself and her way. And that was exactly where I was coming from-I still saw the good man I knew, loved and married. I cared deeply for my husband despite the devastation he caused. And when I began to care more about his relationship with the Lord than the restoration of our marriage, I knew God was working in me. Growing me. Healing me. Maturing me.
The Lord WANTS to save your spouse even more than you do. And He will do everything in His power to get their attention and win them back. It may take weeks, months, years, decades. But do not lose hope. Do not stop praying. God is a God who restores. He already has the victory!
"For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost" -Luke 19:10
When you find yourself tempted to bring the bars across your heart, lock the gate and throw away the key, say a little prayer for your spouse. When you are angry, say a little prayer for your spouse. When you feel like giving up, say a little prayer. God hears you-even though sometimes it seems like he is lounging somewhere on an island with his prayer cell phone turned off and forwarding your prayers to voicemail. It's amazing how praying for all those involved can bring healing and fresh, biblical perspective to your situation, your actions, your own heart.
Do not grow weary. Do not be discouraged when it seems hopeless, when things get worse or when time is silent and standing still. Be strong. Be courageous. Know that God is working everything out for your good. Read Joshua 1:9! Memorize this verse.
Say a little prayer for the betrayer. Say a little prayer for yourself. And I'll say a little prayer for you.