Often, when lies have defined a relationship for many years, we’re left wondering, will I ever stop waiting for the other shoe to drop? Even after years of solid recovery, many of us find ourselves struggling to believe we’re not still being lied to. How can we ever know for sure; we wonder? What if we’re being naïve or foolish? What if He got a whole lot better at hiding it? Why didn’t God reveal the truth sooner the first time? How can I be sure He’ll reveal it this time? What if… How could he… Why did He… How will I… The questions are endless and maddening! So how can we put a stop to them before we lose our minds, and bankrupt our faith?
People far wiser than myself have named three stages to the process of healing from Betrayal Trauma, and as a survivor, I can definitely find pieces of my own story in each of those stages. But I’m here to tell you, the journey to healing is not linear. We won’t move through them in one direction or in a straight line. Instead, we’ll circle in and out and in between the three in no predictable manner, and with no assurance that we won’t go back again later. There have been days when I really believed myself much further down the path to healing than I have found myself on the next. If you’re healing from Betrayal Trauma, you’ll likely experience the same, and I want you to know, it’s okay! Not only is it okay, it’s expected, normal, and really even healthy!
Here you are, you’ve found yourself in that terrible place which has become a reality for countless wives across the world. You’ve discovered your husband has a pornography problem. Maybe you’ve known for a while that he looked here and there, or that he “struggled,” but you’ve finally come to recognize that this is no small issue. You’re hurt and confused, and not sure what in the world you should do next. You need answers, but where do you look? Who can you trust?
Sadness, grief, deep sorrow; these are things that make us uncomfortable. We’re quick to call for healing both in ourselves and in others because we don’t want to deal with the painful emotions involved in a time of grief. But the reality is, when we’ve suffered a loss, whether as a result of a death, or a betrayal, or any other sudden life-altering circumstance, a time of mourning is a natural and NECESSARY part of any TRUE healing process. To minimize its importance is to cripple the mourner. It’s not the way God responds to us, and it’s not the way He calls us to respond. If healing is our goal, we have to learn to handle grief as He does.
The Bible tells a story of a woman – a widow who persistently sought justice from an evil judge. Jesus encouraged us to approach our Heavenly Father with that same kind of persistence in prayer, knowing He will surely grant us justice – and quickly! This is the story of my own persistent prayer.
Being triggered is a very real, very natural, and very agonizing aspect of recovery from betrayal (or any other) trauma. The term refers to the moments when we are very suddenly and unexpectedly reminded of our pain and upheaval in a way that propels us back into the crippling state of shock experienced at the onset of the traumatic experience. Most of us didn’t expect the triggers, and therefore find ourselves completely unequipped to deal with and move past them. But there is hope!
Sometimes we get so caught up in our own desire to be right, we miss out on being a part of God’s mercy. We choose judgement and misery over excitedly taking part in a miracle because we’ve forgotten how merciful He’s been to us! There is much we can learn from the Biblical account of the prophet Jonah.
Last week we talked about the dangers of pornography in marriage from a Biblical perspective. This week let’s get informed about some of the facts surrounding this issue.
It comes as no surprise to me that the world at large has turned a blind eye to the life-shattering dangers of pornography, but I was stunned to find that even among “moral” young people, there is an acceptance (albeit an uncomfortable one) of its presence and use in their homes. It is imperative we speak truth into their lives and alert them to the life-shattering dangers along that path!
Let’s be honest, we don’t often find ourselves on the mountain tops of life questioning God’s goodness, or His plan for us. It is in the depths that these questions surface. It is beneath the crushing weight of life’s sorrows that God’s good plan begins to feel like a far off fairy-tale written for someone else. This is when we must force ourselves to answer the question: Do I TRUST God’s GOOD plan for me?
Do I want to heal? It seems like the answer would be obvious doesn’t it? Of course, we all want to heal! But sadly, the hard truth is, it’s often easier to stay the victim forever than it is to own our part of the problem and choose our own healing. Let’s look at how Jesus dealt with a man stuck in “victim mentality” for guidance and answers.
You guys, God is doing a work in my heart! Jesus is calling to me. I have been processing with Him ever since we got back from our trip to Senegal at the beginning of June. I’ve been almost paralyzed; unable to write because there were just so many thoughts swirling around in my head. I still don’t know exactly what He’s up to, but there are some things I do know, and I’d really love to share them with you.
One of the great experiences of this terrible journey through recovery from intimate betrayal has been the opportunity to meet some truly awesome women of God. I’ve had the pleasure of joining/starting several Facebook groups for Christian women in various tough spots. It’s amazing to watch these sisters band together and support one another. I met Kerry in one of these groups.
It is imperative to a life of victory that we learn how to properly understand and then trust the promises of God. I’ve told you before about the time I found myself so buried in despair it felt like God was a liar. My circumstances seemed to contradict passages like Psalms 91. I didn’t feel like God was protecting me. It felt like the evils He promised wouldn’t touch me were actually consuming me!
What I’ve learned in the years since that time is this: I have to allow God to give me a proper understanding of His promises. I need eyes to see and ears to hear what He’s teaching me. When Scripture seems to contradict reality, I have to first allow the Word of God to interpret the Word of God. Then, I have to choose to believe it. Whether it seems true or not.
If you’ve been with us for the past 5 weeks, we’ve been working our way through a series on Biblical boundaries. We’ve learned a lot! Today, we’re finally going to wrap this series up with a quick reminder of who’s in control. What it’s so easy to forget in the midst of all the chaos of life is that being obedient to God in this area (really in any area) allows us to step out of the way and Him to do His work. It puts God in control!