“No adultery is bloodless.”—Natalia Ginzburg
This particular situation is close to my heart because I have been the person crying and confused over this exact scenario. Honestly, my relationship with God has become stronger because He has guided me through my feelings and self-inflicted guilt due to becoming involved with a man who has an ex-wife and two small children. I will venture to say that EMOTIONS wreck the most havock on a heart, and leave every other spiritual tool helpless on the journey.
My story in the life of a separated spouse began five years ago, when I had no other attachment to either spouse, I only connected with them on an acquaintance level. Their case for their separation and ultimately, divorce, is not necessary in order to make my point about where I stand with ANY situation similar. I was not the reason they had marital problems, yet, I had to remain true to myself and to my beliefs about the sacredness of marriage to delicately tread on the overwhelming feelings I was experiencing during the roughest points of conflict. Every love story is different, but God’s Love for marriage always stays the same.
Basically, I have three statements of advice to give for anyone who is experiencing trials concerning being involved in the life of a crumbling union:
1) If you find yourself becoming attached to a human who is separated from their spouse, there is no excuse for you to make excuses for them or yourself. You are human. You are going to have sinful thoughts. You are going to want to make excuses as to how your situation is different than others. The difference boils down to how much you trust God’s plan for your life, and how much your need to be loved outweighs the need to be wanted. God loves you. God loves marriage. God’s purpose for marriage is a holy union that is not meant to be taken lightly. Divorce is messy and is ultimately not good for any party involved. It involves hurt, heartache and fear that will always be there and will come back shaking its fists time and time again, most likely for the rest of your life. Do not make excuses. Instead, trust in TRUTH in your life. Have accountability partners who know you spiritually and have them on hand for your weakest moments. Be honest with yourself and do not make excuses for lies or raging spurts of passion. You are worth the wait, and not worthy of excuses.
2) The ending of a human relationship is not the final chapter of your relationship with God. I dare say everyone has made choices in a relationship with any human that have not been spiritually driven. This applies to the situation presented. You cannot begin to understand the perfect plan for your life if you start in the middle of an ungodly choice. Beginning a relationship with another human is complicated enough without the wedding vows being attached to it. As much as you would like to be wanted and needed in a relationship, the outcome of waiting on God’s plan is the ultimate choice. You can cut off extended heartache before it begins by promising to keep in the light what has already been vowed. You CAN go on without a romantic involvement, and more so, without a friendship, if you truly believe in God’s sacred romance of marriage. This may seem like it is hard, but I promise you, the road you take when you ignore God’s view of marriage is much tougher than the journey of breaking ties to someone you want to be with, yet, does not have the full capacity to love you the way God intended for you to be loved. God loves you. God is your ultimate Lover.
3) Prayer and meditation are your most valuable links to relational happiness- and most importantly, through these two actions, you will learn that shame and guilt have no place in your heart. If you believe in God and have an intimate relationship with him, you will find that no other will you love you more than Him. Your first and last love is God’s. Your deepest desire and passions come from Him, and realizing what those are will erase and REPLACE any imposters. If you continue to live in denial of the actions that contrast your relationship of love with God, then you ultimately will live in shame and guilt. No one wants this for their life choice. These feelings are a part of life but they are sinful and unmindful of the truly living. When you battle for your heart, take note of what you are fighting for. Ask yourself if you are on Love’s side, or on your own blinded agenda. We have the power to choose, God gave that to us. And that makes us pretty darn special.
What should you do? Pray with me this simple prayer and listen intently for the answer:
Psalm 103:5-6 says “He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s! The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly.” (NLT)
As God’s child, shame has no place in your life or heart. Your name is safe in His mouth because you are beautiful. You are loved. You are His. Lord, help me understand your plan for my heart. Help me know that shame and guilt are not meant to live within me. Guide me as I seek the truth. Guide me to understand the sanctity of a holy union. Help me understand the time and the place for the gifts (mind, body and Spirit) you have given to me as your child. Help me to use them in sanctity and holiness. Help me to fully understand what it means to be in love and help me listen to what you teach me about the true meaning of being in love. With an eagerness, I refuse to settle for anything less than this kind of spiritual love in my life.
YOU ARE HIS. First and foremost.
“Time is nothing. The desire to love is everything.” Nostradamus