Several weeks ago I had the great honor and privilege to be interviewed by Anne for the Betrayal Trauma Recovery Podcast. What a pleasure it was to talk to her that afternoon! Click through our link to listen to the whole podcast and get to know me a little better!
The crucifixion and the resurrection of Jesus Christ – Forgiveness & Redemption. The whole of Christianity hinges on those two events, and what they made possible. Yesterday marked the end of Holy Week with the celebration of Easter – Resurrection Sunday – so what better time to talk about how those two words – Forgiveness & Redemption – have impacted our little family this past year?
The crucifixion and the resurrection of Jesus Christ – Forgiveness & Redemption. The whole of Christianity hinges on those two events, and what they made possible. Yesterday marked the beginning of Holy Week, so what better time to talk about how those two words – Forgiveness & Redemption – have impacted our little family in this past year?
I’ve been putting off writing about this part of our story for months. It’s one thing to tell you all about me and my love. We’re both adults who have mutually decided to share our story. But talking about our kids in depth is another thing. Like me, they didn’t ask to be thrown into this story. They’re victims of the terrible decisions of another. I want to protect them as much as possible. Still, deciding how to handle the family dynamics after intimate betrayal is a major problem that everyone in this situation has to navigate, and my readers have asked again and again for more information on why we decided to tell our kids, how we did it, and how they’ve handled it. So, here goes.
On February 6, 2017 I anxiously posted an announcement onto a social media page inviting the world to check out my blog. I was scared to death! I had registered my blog with WordPress on January 21st, just a few short weeks before. In those weeks I had been writing and learning like a whirlwind. The blog consisted of an “About Me” page, and a three-part series detailing “Our Story.” I also had two additional posts mostly ready to go. Nonetheless, I had no idea what I was doing. Little did I know what God had in store for the year to come!
I am so excited to be writing this post! When I started this blog almost one year ago, I had no idea where our story was headed. All I knew was that God was asking me to share it, so I did. I was scared to death. As 2016 ended and 2017 began, I was broken and hurting. I feared my marriage was over, that my husband was lost, and that I was worthless and disposable. I was the lowest I had ever been. It wasn’t much different for my love, or for our marriage. We were at our all-time low, and we had no idea what the future would hold. No idea… But as we ended Chapter 3 of Our Story, we clung to a verse:
Isaiah 43:18-19 – But forget all that – it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.
We never would have guessed what God was up to! We’ve had front row seats to a real-life miracle, and we are in awe!
I’m really excited to tell you about a book I’ve been reading – Hope for the Hurting Wife: 30 Days of Encouragement for Your Marriage by Rebekah Hallberg & Jen Stults. If you find yourself in a difficult spot in your marriage and are looking for something to fire you up each morning and renew your commitment to push through even when you’re stuck in the “for worse” of marriage, this is it!
Refusing to confess our sins leads to misery and defeat. On the other hand, a life lived in complete honesty – allowing sin and guilt to come out into the open – will be cleared of guilt, and will be rewarded with the joy that comes from being forgiven. The truth will set you free. The result is victory! How different the Christian life would be if we truly understood why confession is important; if we all had the humility to live it each and every day! Lord, humble me so that I will be quick to confess my sins and shortcomings and live in the victory You offer!
One of the most difficult parts of recovering from intimate betrayal is learning how and when to start allowing trust to be rebuilt. This becomes especially difficult when there have been multiple betrayals strung out over long periods of time, with periods of believed sobriety in between. How can we ever know what’s true when life has been one huge lie after another? How can we ever believe that the evidences of change are real this time when they’ve been nothing more than a mirage so many times before? While things are going very well for us right now, I’d be lying if I said this isn’t still a huge (HUGE) struggle for me. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13 that love always trusts; and the life of a Christian is supposed to be defined by love. So, it’s vital that I learn how to find truth and who, what, why, when, and how to trust.
When I was a child I always believed that I would end up on the mission field myself one day, but God hasn’t yet opened that door. Every time our church sent out a missions team I longed to be a part of it, but circumstances never allowed it. As our children grew that longing deepened, as I wanted so desperately to expose them to those same lessons I had learned as a child. But alas, the dream seemed impossible since I knew it was very unlikely to ever get my love to agree to go. I couldn’t seem to get him to catch my passion, no matter how hard I tried; no matter how hard I prayed. Trip after trip after trip passed us by.
Our Bible reading plan through those first few months took us through Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. (The story of Moses and the Israelites) If you’ve ever read them, you know these books can become somewhat difficult to get through. Once you get past the first half of Exodus there isn’t a whole lot of narrative, at least not in big chunks. Instead, there are seemingly endless lists of laws, regulations, instructions on how to build the tabernacle, instructions on how to divide the land, inventories of materials needed to build the tabernacle, genealogies, and other lengthy records. Meanwhile when sections of narrative do show up they can be exasperating as the people of Israel complain, argue, and disobey God time and time again. Of course, it’s Scripture, which means it’s inspired by God and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training. Never has that truth been more clear to me than in these past few months as my love has devoured these words of God and found beautiful lessons each and every day in some of the most unlikely places. What a joy it is to witness the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of someone you love!
Yesterday I told you what our plan has looked like for the past 45 days and then I told you how God has been working in me to bring healing. Today I would like to tell you what God has been doing in my husband for the past month and half. You guys, I have been praying for this for so long and it is a joy to see all those prayers finally bearing some fruit!
Well, we’re halfway through the 90 day therapeutic separation. I thought it would be a good idea to give a little update because God has been doing some big stuff! We ended up changing a few of the parameters to the plan after about a week. I’d like to explain those changes and then get to telling you about some of those big ole mountains God has been moving.
Are you a betrayed wife who is fiercely committed to seeking and following God as you heal? Are you looking for a community of like-minded women also recovering from betrayal trauma? Would you like to join our secret Facebook support group? Connect with Cherith on Facebook, and send me a private message to request to be added.
Or, contact me via email if you just need someone to talk to who understands and is committed to gently pointing you toward Jesus.