When we walk the aisle and say "I Do" our heart and mind is full of nothing but dreamy and glorious things. We can't imagine that aisle being a pathway to pain, sorrow, betrayal or devastation. Oh sure, we say "In plenty and in want .... richer for poorer ..... sickness and health" ... but let's be really honest with each other here ... we can't hardly imagine that we'd face a world crashing down around us.
For some though, that is what came later. Perhaps the first month, maybe 3, 5 or 10 years into it. What THEN? What is a person to do when they feel there is no one to turn to .... when all hope fades into the far off distance? What happens when your very best friend can no longer be trusted? That friend you stood before the Lord with and vowed every part of your being to. Maybe you know all too well what I speak of. Or maybe you have a loved one that does.
Betrayal whether through internet porn, a gambling addiction, alcoholism, or a fleshly affair .... they all bring destruction in a marriage. It can leave the other spouse feeling abandoned, defrauded, helpless, paralyzed, destroyed .... fill in the blank. Darkness often overtakes you and it seems the moment might come you won't know how to take another breath. Or maybe wish you wouldn't.
I've had the absolute privilege of walking with a lot of families, including many adoptive families. Nothing grieves my heart quite as deep as when a friend faces what I've described. I have come to know that the ONLY thing I have to offer her is the Hope of Christ. HE is the only one that can bring light to such darkness.
The other day I was checking in with a sweet friend. She's a fellow adoptive momma and I just love her. I actually got to meet two of her precious kiddos before I ever met her in real life. What a fun blessing! I was excited to hear back from her, yet was a bit anxious unsure of how things were working out. You see she had been walking through a long and messy trail of darkness in marriage. Yes, this even happens to "cream of the crop" families. She had every reason to give up. Countless issues to just walk away from. I had prayed and prayed for this sweet friend, yet just wasn't sure what the outcome would be. Reading her update just brought me to TEARS. She shared in heartfelt honesty how hard the journey was, yet that she was looking to the Lord and saw hope again. The road ahead is gonna be a difficult one, but I know that God is going to bring BEAUTY from these ashes. He promises to bind up the brokenhearted. To set captives free. To bring LIFE.
Isaiah 40:30-31 comes to mind as I think about my friend and her precious family.
"Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
the those that WAIT ON THE LORD will renew their strength.
They will soar with wings like eagles; they will run and not faint."
I am so thankful that my friend chose to look to her Heavenly Father rather than close the door on Hope. I have full confidence that the Lord is going to use her family MIGHTILY to bring hope to other hurting marriages.
Are you needing to look towards Hope? Are you in need of waiting on the Lord to renew your strength? Maybe you have a friend that needs you to pray her through the depths of darkness and despair. We are often so busy with our lives that we don't stop to really care. When darkness comes in marriage we're in need of a light-bearer. Will you be a light-bearer?