Divorce is not a topic people like to dive into because of its destructive nature. No Christian dreams of getting divorced after walking down the aisle with pomp and color. The reality is that divorce is rampant in the church as it is in the world. This is alarming because as Christians, we are expected to have mastered the covenant of matrimony and show others the way. Facing divorce as a Christian is heartbreaking because you feel like you have failed in life and an important calling as a child of God.
We live in a broken world, and we are imperfect beings trying to live a righteous life before God. The ugly truth is that many Christians are facing divorce and don’t know what to do. You know that God hates divorce, but what do you do when your spouse comes wielding divorce papers in your face? It is not all marriages that undergo reconciliation, some come to an end causing destruction in their wake.
How Do You Face Divorce as a Christian?
Don’t Rush to Sign the Papers
If you are facing divorce, avoid making rash decisions because you are dealing with the termination of a covenant, not a mere contract. You may be angry and want to get over with it, but take a minute to calm down and allow God to minister to you. Proverbs 19:2 says, “Also it is not good for a soul to be without knowledge, And he sins who hastens with his feet.” You are likely to make bad decisions when you rush to end your marriage. Take some time and think things through to avoid complicating the situation.
Prayer is powerful and effective, therefore, take your marriage before God and ask Him to intervene. God knows what is happening in your situation and wants to address it. When you pray, get rid of bitterness, anger, rage and other unhealthy emotions you are experiencing. This will allow you to pray with the right motives and see the answers to your prayer. James 4:2-3 says that you fight with others because of things you are supposed to ask God. And when you ask, you don’t receive because you ask with wrong motives for your selfish reasons.
As you pray over your marriage, pour your heart out to God and accept His will in your situation. Let Him lead you in taking actions steps to correct whatever went wrong. Seek His wisdom so that you will know what to do.
Reflect on Your Role in the Divorce
We don’t like to admit that we may have played a role in the deterioration of a situation, let alone a marriage. By the time your marriage is headed for divorce, it means there are underlying issues that are causing tension and unhappiness in both partners. Your spouse may be the one walking away but has a reason for doing so. The best way of finding out if there is anything your spouse is not happy about in you is to ask God for a revelation. King David recognized that one can have hidden faults they know nothing about (Psalm 19:12). You also need to realize that you changing does not guarantee that the marriage will work. Any change you make is to be a better Christian before you can do it for your marriage.
Surrender Your Need to Control the Situation
In your zeal to fix your marriage, you will end up striving to do so in your strength. This will complicate matters and may drive your spouse further away from you. Surrendering the situation to God means that you let go of it, and let Him fight your battle for it belongs to Him (2 Chronicles 20:15).
God works best when we don’t get in His way, and He does a complete job of restoration. Treat your spouse with respect and the love of Christ as you wait for God to move in your situation.
Have a Candid Conversation with Your Spouse
By the time you are facing divorce, yelling and name calling are the order of the day. One thing that will help is addressing any issue candidly and in a calm manner. Be truthful about how you feel and allow your spouse to tell you how he or she feels. When people feel heard, they stop rebelling and getting defensive. You can get through to a person when you don’t force them to talk but agree on a time that is convenient for both of you. Proverbs 15:1 says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” For you to talk to your spouse with calmness, you have to let go of the ill will you harbor in your heart. Measure your words and speak peaceful and gracious words. They will go a long way in allowing for a healthy conversation.
A Christian counselor or pastor will counsel you using the Word of God. Psalm 119:66 says, “Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands.” If there is anything you need when facing divorce is knowledge and good judgment of your situation. If you are unable to deal with the situation you are facing, talk to a counselor, with or without your spouse. It’s not a guarantee that your spouse will follow you for the sessions, but getting help never hurts.
A counselor will give you practical solutions that are biblical ,and they will advise you and pray for you. Seeing your situation from a different perspective can make you have a change of heart. Marriage counseling is always a good idea because it allows someone who is not invested in the marriage to help you arrive at the truth.
Facing divorce is not easy, but with God’s help and guidance, you will always be on the right path. Don’t let go of your relationship with God because of what you are going through. If you see your marital situation from God’s perspective, you will know what to do to correct what has gone wrong.