I prayed that I would be able to accept the unacceptable and be deeply content in the life I never wanted, and God has heard my prayers. There have been many layers to get through to come to this point, and with each layer that has been shed, sin and wrong thinking have been exposed first. It’s been a long hard 20 months but necessary to root out my own wrong thinking and expose my blind spots.
So I’ve come to accept in fuller measure the unacceptable, and in so doing, know a contentment that I haven’t experienced up till now. With contentment, happiness has come which has been a surprise and welcome after the hurt and misery of the past. But even in my deepest misery, God was doing his wonderful work with his chisel and hammer, and unknown to me was loving me as much as he ever has by shaping me more like himself; chipping away at selfishness and pride, anxiety and bitterness. As I look back I see his hand of grace in every detail:
- Grace taught me that God loves repentant sinners and I must love my repentant husband.
- Grace revealed my bitterness and resentment and self pity
- Grace brought me to repentance when I thought I had the right to drown in negative emotions
- Grace enabled me to understand that my wisdom is not God’s wisdom
- Grace has shown me what it means to deny self and take up my cross and follow Christ as I have understood forgiveness and love in greater measure
- Grace taught me how to love when my feelings didn’t match
- Grace shouted that obedience really matters in the big stuff and the small
- Grace softened my heart, and enabled me to see Christ’s obedience to his father and how beautiful and challenging that is for us in all of our responses to him and each another
- Grace taught me that denying self was the only route to true peace and contentment
- Grace has sought me out, bound up my wounds and given me great hope for the future
- Grace means that a broken and smashed marriage can be more beautiful than it was before as hurt is swallowed up by forgiveness and love
- Grace has brought life and eternal hope that nothing in this life can thwart.
God has lavished his grace upon my life and I am blessed beyond measure. Grace will continue to shape and mould us, showing us our failings and sins in the future. God is faithful and He promises to keep us, and because of this we have hope and security.
I am aware that there are many pitfalls if I take my eyes of Jesus. Negative emotions can rise from nowhere and if unguarded can swamp me and cause me to sin. I pray that as I look up to Jesus, and not down at the waves, we will journey on together as husband and wife and give him the glory.God’s grace has saved my soul and it’s saved my marriage. We have a great saviour.