Last week, I turned my back on God. It was bad. I mean, really, really, bad.
I had felt hopeless. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. I felt convicted and angry. Gosh, I was so angry.
My anger would come from nowhere. Out of nothing. It consumed me. It controlled me. It was all I had.
I’m not sure if it’s a spiritual gift or not, but I tend to have a very real sense of a spiritual war. There are times in my own home where I can fell the struggle between good and evil. There were times this past week when I sided with evil, willingly.
It’s true that since I found out my husband cheated I’ve been even angrier than ever before. I mean, really, really angry. Which is why I turned my back on God. This week, I wanted revenge more than I wanted anything else. More than I wanted God, himself. I felt cut off from Him. I couldn’t hear Him anymore. And when I did, He didn’t say anything I wanted to hear.
The injustice that I had felt for months had finally caught up with me. I wanted to destroy people. I didn’t care anymore. There is nothing more frightening than watching yourself destroy and hurt people just because you wanted to. I am embarrassed that I could ever act like that.
The most disgusting thing was that I knew how I was hurting God. I let the enemy use me to hurt God. What people don’t realize is that both God and the enemy want our souls just as much as the other. The enemy knew exactly what to say and do to get a rise out of me. To make me think that I was the only one who had been hurt. He had convinced me that God didn’t really care about me because if he did then why didn’t he stop it? What had I ever done to God, really? I mean, apart from being just like every other sinner, what had I done to deserve this? This wasn’t what I signed up for. I demanded better. I deserved better.
I couldn’t figure it out. I had done everything right. I read the books. I went to church. I prayed. I shared Jesus with others. I gave to the less fortunate. I did everything I was supposed too. Well, maybe not everything, but I mean, I had done enough.
Scroll through older posts and you will see my fight with unforgiveness unfold right before your eyes. It is a struggle I have dealt with my entire life. Of course I made up with people along the way. I would put a smile on my face. Move on. Well, I would say, ‘no biggie, it’s forgotten’, but that was a lie. A big fat lie. I never forgot. I never moved on. And in my very small world where I was the center of attention, it was a big deal.
So I went to church last week. Our Bishop mentioned a book suggestion to the congregation. Since I love to read, I immediately asked him, following the service, if I could borrow his copy, better yet, he agreed to give me one. I was so excited to read this book.
I have been told by a few, including my Bishop, that this book changed his life and would probably change mine. I nodded and smiled. I’d believe it when I saw it, you know?
He told me that it would rub me the wrong way and that I might not like everything it had to say. Even the author warned of that. I turned the page to chapter one, seriously, what could this book say that I hadn’t heard before?
They were right. It did make me mad. It made me angry. This book called me out. Not only did this book hit the nail on the head, but it poked and prodded. I had to set it down even though I wanted to know more and read more, I couldn’t.
‘Oh yeah?’ I said looking up. I was challenging God. I dare you.
Again, I had done everything the way I was supposed to. After all, wasn’t it me that got hurt and betrayed? Wasn’t it the affair that had destroyed me? Destroyed my entire life. Ruined everything. I didn’t do that. They did. They did that to me. So why, all of a sudden, is it on me? Oh man, was I angry.
I opened up to my friend. I kept somethings to myself, but I tried to be honest. As I talked and asked for guidance I knew what I was supposed to do. But I didn’t want to.
More than obedience, more than love, more than family, more than any of that, I wanted someone to pay.
“We will not forgive until the debt is paid in full, and only we can determine the acceptable compensation. When we seek to correct the wrong done to us, we set ourselves up as judges. But we know God is the just judge. He will pass the righteous judgement. But He will repay according to righteousness. If someone has done wrong and genuinely repents, Jesus’ work at Calvary erases the debt. You may say, ‘But the wrong was done to me, not to Jesus!’ Yes, but you don’t realize the wrong you did to Him. An innocent victim, He bore no guilt while every other human had sinned and was condemned to die. Each one of us has broken laws of God that transcend the laws of the land. All of us should be condemned to death by the hand of the highest court in the universe if justice is served. You may have done nothing to provoke the wrong you incurred at the hand of another. But if you contrast what was done to you with what you’ve been forgiven of, there is no comparison. It would not even put a dent in the debt you owe! If you feel cheated, you have lost your concept of the mercy extended to you.” The Bait of Satan, John Bevere
I kept reading over the next few days. I began to question everything again. The answers were all around me.
Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses. Mark 11:24-26
‘I thought I already did.’ I explained, well, more like pleaded.
“We are to be so far removed from avenging ourselves that we willingly risk being taken advantage of again.”
It was true, I had been scared to death to really believe Justin, to really trust Justin and to really love Justin ever since I found out. My biggest fear was experiencing that pain again. I cannot tell you how devastating it was to find out that your husband had been unfaithful. It was awful. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. It destroys you. It defeats you. But I realized in a single solitary moment that not having a relationship with my Father, just because someone made a mistake, was worse.
I didn’t think there could be anything worse than finding out that you had been betrayed by your spouse but finding out that you could betray God because of it, was way worse.
I caught a glimpse of what my life would look like if He wasn’t in it. I didn’t like what I saw.
Revenge wasn’t worth it.
So I forgave. It took a few days for me to tell my husband, but I did. And this time I know it’s real. Immediately, as the words came out of my mouth, I felt released. The chains had finally been broken. I knew that He was happy. I could finally feel Him again.
I feel brand new. The things that I was so angry about just last week seem like a lifetime away. Nothing else changed really. I mean, it’s only been a few hours, but my attitude is brand new. I am at peace with everything. This is the kind of peace that only He can provide. The kind that makes no sense.
The truth is, I don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t know that things are going to be perfect. I don’t know if things will work out. There’s really no guarantee for anything, but I’m okay. Whatever happens, I know that it will be okay and I will be okay because In all things God works for the good of those who love him. Romans 8:28 And really, what else do you need?