I recently was chatting with a lovely, Christian lady who is a wonderful servant for Christ. I think of her as one of
God’s special people. Unbeknownst to me, however, she revealed that she had read my book and that it liberated her as she had been in an extremely abusive marriage for over 30 years and felt major guilt in wanting to leave the marriage.
She was raised in a church whose statement of faith suggested we are forgiven via God’s grace; yet, that was for salvation. The leadership, however, exercised legalism as the standard for daily life practices. This legalism was in the form of the “do nots”. You know what I mean.
So many times she felt she and her children would be healthier and safer if she separated from her spouse but the legalism she had been taught stated divorce was a sin and so she felt trapped. She wanted her childen to be in a safer and more peaceful home but did not see that she had any options.
I asked her to find me the verse(s) that supported this belief. Good old Malachi 2:16 flowed from her breath. “I hate divorce.” I mentioned that He is not real happy with gluttony either (as I stuffed my chocolate chip cookie into my mouth.) Yet, most of us do not equate gluttony with all its health issues, as sin.
Divorce is not the sin but the behaviors that lead to this resolve certainly could be. For instance, partners who do not honor their spouses, their children and their family responsibilities certainly are not living Godly lives.
One cannot change a spouse; yet, one can and must change oneself while confronting difficult times. This requires much prayer, searching the Scriptures for truth, and living under grace, not law. Let the Holy Spirit direct you and enjoy the wonderful advice provided by leaders and Godly counselors, BUT challenge all by actual Scripture.
There are legitimate reasons for divorce. Take time to read the “Reasons for Divorce” category on this website. Do all that you can to keep your marriage together, but realize that God does not want you nor your children to be in an unsafe environment.
God Bless You.