Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Just Me and God

"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Psalm 34:18

After two years of fighting, screaming, sulking, pouting, and manipulation, my first marriage ended.  I had become a just a shell of a person, not much of the real me was left at that point.  Although there certainly were plenty of things I did wrong, I felt like I had done all I could do.  I had told myself over and over as kind of a personal mantra, "I married for better or worse.  This is 'worse'; it has to get better."

I don't think I would have ever left on my own.  I had made a promise, and this is what I had to deal with.  I don't think a person can understand this unless they've been through it, but there were times when I made situations worse-trying to get him to hit me.  If he hit me, that was a very definite line to cross, and  I knew it would be okay to leave.  Emotional abuse is murky and hard to define.  The bruising is just as bad, but nobody can see it.

So anyway, the fighting had gotten really bad by our second anniversary.  On that very day, he told me he wanted a divorce.  That was all I needed.  It was like he gave me permission to leave.  

Now during the next year when we were separated but not yet divorced is when my relationship with God really truly began. I was broken.  I felt like a total failure because I hadn't been able to make it all work.  I was so ashamed and full of guilt.  I often felt like I had nobody to talk to--nobody except God, that was.  This is where He really began to teach me who He is and how He could fulfill the parts in me that I had wanted another person to fill. That poem about "Footprints in the Sand" has always touched me, and I can look at this period of my life and know that He carried me through.  I always think of this period of my life as "Just Me and God."

God used those circumstances where I was broken and felt so alone to mold my heart.  To make it more like His.  It was in that time that I realized how far off track I had gotten.  He showed me how choices that I made over time led me to a place where I never thought I would be--divorced at the age of twenty-three.  He showed me how the very thing I had been seeking all along was Him.  I sought His forgiveness, and  He gave it to me.  

Now I do not know your circumstances.  Maybe you are in a bad place; maybe you are thinking that divorce would be easier at this point than whatever you are dealing with.  I don't know where you are, but I do know my own experiences.  Divorce is not an easy path.  It left me scarred, damaged, broken, and ashamed.   It was a long, difficult road to forgive that person who caused me such pain.  It was even more difficult to forgive myself and to know who I am again.  Every time I think I am completely past it, something comes up where I have to deal with it again.   As recently as yesterday, there was an issue that was directly tied to my first marriage.

Maybe it just seems impossible.  Maybe you have already been through a divorce.  Maybe you are facing something else that is completely unsurmountable from where you stand.  Give it over to God.  The same God who spoke the universe into being, who parted the Red Sea, who rained down manna from Heaven, who brought the walls of Jericho down, who raised His one and only Son from the dead.  This God can handle your pain and heartbreak and deliver you in a way that you could never dream.  "For with God, nothing shall be impossible (Luke 1:76)."  He can breathe new life into your marriage where it seems dead.  He can resurrect something out of nothing. Give yourself and your situation over to Him, and let Him do the rest.

There is a song called "Come However You are" by City Harbor.  This song really speaks to me.  It reminds me that there is nothing too big for Him to handle, and that we are never too broken or scarred to be fixed by His healing hands.

"Come however you are
Come with all your heart heartbreaks
Come with all the mistakes you made
Lay them down at the cross
Give them to the God who loves you
Hurt scarred falling apart
Come however you are
Come with your regrets
Come with the things you can't change
Come with all your fear and all your shame with everything
Come with the pieces of your bruised and broken heart
Don't wait"

 Come However You Are-City Harbor

(click the link to listen to the whole song)


  1. Erin, I've had my own time of wishing I'd let God be in control. Thanks for sharing. Wonderfully written.