His children are far from safety,  crushed in court without a defender.

~Job 5:4~ 

I think alot about how my daughter has been affected by my divorce.  Lately, it seems like one of the most prominent thoughts in my mind.  I know that I have done the right thing and I have followed God in this, however; I am so completely ambushed by guilt sometimes that I can hardly stand to be in my own skin.  At times like these, I call out to God and ask Him, “Did I do what You wanted me to do in that situation?”  “Have I been obedient?”  His answer, no matter how difficult it is to understand, has always been, “Yes.”  So where does the pain come from?  It comes from seeing my daughter struggle with emotions that I can’t help her overcome.  I can’t sympathize enough, I can’t comfort enough, and I can’t make them go away.  So, I just have to let her cry and teach her how to pray about it so that she can find the peace that she needs to get through.  All the while, praying that she will not let my experience be the basis of her reluctance to love someone later in life.

As I sit here today, listening to Matthew West’s song, Two Houses, I became so overwhelmed by the thought of what she must be going through.  She is the only one of the three of us who has to exist in both worlds; his and mine.  At least he and I have the luxury of building our own new relationships and developing our goals and interests in our new lives.  The positive thing is that she now gets more of our attention when she is with us, but that doesn’t heal the brokenness that she feels when she has to adapt to living in his house every other weekend and knowing that she can never have all of what she loves in one place.

When I was younger, I always said that I never wanted children.  This was, in part, due to the fact that my parents had problems and I never wanted to put a child through that kind of pain.  I was certain that if this was the way it was done, that I wanted no part of it.  But the rewards of having my daughter have been of more value than anything I could ever have possessed without her.  So, when my ex-husband and I decided to have children and we were blessed with her, she became the most important thing in my life.  To the point that I was overwhelmed with anxiety about her getting hurt or about making mistakes or otherwise messing up her development.  Making the decision to divorce was the hardest thing I have ever had to do…and I’ve been through a few things.  Understanding that there was no other course of action was the hardest thing for me to accept.  Knowing that the impact on her heart would be something that I could never heal for her is a burden that I will have to carry for the rest of my life.

Brokenness is not permanent, though.  We have a Savior who can heal all things.  While I can’t put the pieces of my daughter’s broken heart back together, I can find comfort in the fact that He can and will do this for her.  I pray each day that she will be happy, healthy and safe in His arms and in mine.  All I can do is make sure she understands that God is always there.  He’s not just at my house, he’s not just at her father’s house.  He’s not different in either place.  He’s the same God, everywhere, all the time.  And He’s always, always, always going to be there to love her, to comfort her, and to protect her even when we can’t be with her.

Although I’m divorced, I would urge anyone out there who is experiencing problems in their marriage to first look at their own personal relationship with God and start to build that before making any big decisions.  Especially if you have children.  I’ve never been one to say that you should stay in an unfulfilling or unsatisfying situation; however, if you find yourself at an absolute impasse, God can help you find the right solution.  But you really need to turn it all over to Him so that He can guide you through whatever is going on.  If you are being abused, it goes without saying, you need to leave that situation and seek shelter.  But if the problems are that you’ve simply fallen out of love with one another or maybe you never were actually in love, ask God for guidance, check your selfishness level, and consider the impact on your child before moving forward.  Reconciliation is possible, but it’s so hard to gain back trust when it’s been broken and to feel love again after so many harsh words are spoken.  Hard for your spouse, and even harder for your children.  They are watching you.  They are expecting you to protect them.  They will relive the very things you are hoping they aren’t seeing in your relationships.  Guard your heart, guard their hearts, and follow His lead.

Above all else, guard your heart,  for everything you do flows from it.

 ~Proverbs 4:23~

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