“I was married for 25 years. I'm 53 now, and so scared that I won't get married again, but that is the desire of my heart and I just keep praying.”
This comment on one of my blog posts touched my heart. Being scared, anxious, afraid — these are typical emotions associated with divorce. But as Christians we are encouraged not to be afraid. There are up to 40 passages in the bible that seek to assure us we need not fear. And yet we do. Cue the guilt added to how we’re already feeling.
I understand divorce fear.
My divorce fear began when I seriously considered leaving my husband of twenty-five years. My writing business was not profitable and I had no good job prospects. I worried about the amount of spousal support I might get. Our child was grown, but, of course, our divorce would still have an impact on him. Would I, over age fifty, ever find love again? I worried that maybe I hadn’t tried hard enough to make our marriage work, and I wondered if the Lord wanted me to try some more. One of my Christian counselors was so appalled I would consider divorce, she refused to talk with me about it!
One of the Beta readers of the memoir, a non-Christians commented, “I thought a strong Christian faith is supposed to bring peace and tranquility.”
Ouch! How do I answer that? I’d say God doesn’t snap His fingers and all is rainbows and bunnies. We're students at His feet, growing in knowledge of Him. And often we are not ready to learn until we go through hard times and realize we can’t rely on ourselves alone.
That was me. Thankfully, God was patient, encouraging me to learn to trust Him and His provision. Learning to let go of my fear was a process, not an overnight-transformation. There were days I had to make the effort to lay aside my fears on an hourly basis.
The Lord wants our participation in the healing. We are to listen to Him so He can direct our paths. I asked God for guidance, and received help along my road to recovery, taking advantage of several tools for healing that were available to me. As I did the best I could, God came through for me in miraculous ways.
Like the woman who wrote on my blog, I hoped to marry again someday. I was able to put aside my fears of being alone, and told the Lord I would wait for the man of His choosing. I was fifty-eight when I met the love of my life. From our conversations, it was clear God had a hand in our finding each other. I pray the woman who wrote me will wait upon the Lord, trusting she will find the love she is seeking at the perfect time in her life.
I want you to know that, even though you will probably experience some level of fear, with the Lord’s help, you can get through it. Click here for 10 tools that will help you as you seek to overcome divorce fear.
Linda M. Kurth is a writer and a divorced and remarried Christian. In going through the divorce, she experienced a dichotomy of responses from the Christian community. After sharing some of those experiences in her upcoming memoir, God, the Devil, and Divorce, she's heard many stories of divorced Christians who have struggled with the same issues. This blog invites divorced Christians to tell their stories with the goal of encouraging churches to resist condemnation and become a source of healing and grace.
Do you have a divorce experience to share? Have you been shamed by a church because of your divorce? Or encouraged? There are hurting people who would like to hear your story, who need to know they are not alone, and who need to be encouraged. If you are interested in sharing your story, email Linda for guidelines: Linda@LindaMKurth.com
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