My divorce process started one year ago this week. An event one year ago this past Sunday led to a year ago this coming Saturday, confronting my (now ex) wife with my fears of what had been going on. (And no, I'm not going to get specific here)
That day, I got in the car and drove the 5 hours to see my brother and discovered I was there for his son's 2nd birthday. Even my mom was visiting that day. God took care of me then like he had done many times before. That was also the weekend that I was selected to go audition for the Cubs.
Mind = Blown.
Today, out of the blue, an acquaintance, one of a few that I know of going through a divorce, told me she was really struggling with things coming to a close. I think she hoped that I had some words of wisdom or encouragement. So I wrote back to her:
Of course I hate to hear that your marriage ended in divorce. It's not what God wants for us, but he loves us so much that he understands and keeps right on loving us through it. His plans for you will not be thwarted because this happened.All that led me to the reminder that God uses us when we're broken.
I went through a church small group curriculum called Divorce Care. I think it's a good curriculum, just make sure you follow the program and not the leaders. (I had some bad leaders when I went through it.) I found it very helpful, but then I'd been in counseling for most of my adult life. so I had kind of a leg-up on understanding my feelings.
Some people go through stages of grieving - commonly known as Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Talking, and Acceptance. Most who experience those in one form or another don't get them one at a time or one after the other and they repeat on you in different ways for the time ahead.
I recommend you find a professional woman (since you're a woman) to counsel you - someone with divorce experience who is a Christian. It will take time to feel like participating in church - that's OK. There is financial help out there. Get yourself cared for. Feel free to ask questions if you have them - I've been through this 3 times.
So, here are three good things about going through garbage.
2) God doesn't choose the "together" people
Over and over in the Bible God uses the least of these, the small, the broken and the unlikely to do what he wants done. He works that way because if he used people who were all-that, people might think it was them and not God working. So, God uses me right where I am in my brokenness.
3) God uses bad stuff for good
Was divorce what God wanted for me? No way. It's not part of how he wanted my life to go. That doesn't mean he just gives up on me, no way. Romans 8:28 is one of my favorite verses. It tells me that God uses whatever happens to us to achieve his ultimate good. That's pretty awesome-good! There's no way I would have been able to help my friends who are going through bad things, unless I'd gone through them too.
1) God is the god of second chances
And third... and fourth... This weekend, I'm repeating that trip to my brother's place, only on purpose - to spend time with my family. It's my nephew's birthday party again, and I have a new nephew being dedicated in church on Sunday. The days do get brighter than they can seem right now and there's a whole lot more happy ahead.