Submitted by Karen

by Jason Deines

in What is God Doing in Your Life

I found out in November ‘09, that my husband was having an ongoing emotional affair with a woman at church that we were in ministry with. She claimed (pushed) to be my friend and the church treated them like indispensable hero’s. Even thought it was funny how most people thought “they were married”, because they made such a great team. When this affair came out, they were both loved, supported and protected by the key church leaders. I was treated like the sinner and scolded if I even raised my voice at my husband or showed any anger or feelings. Even when my husband went against the agreement to sever all contact in order to stay in ministry, and months later he admitted that they didn’t, he was still able to stay and serve. He has treated me with such cruelty and anger for months as I did what I was told. “Love him back”. He crammed it down my throat about his feelings, connection and attraction to this woman. How much they wanted to act on the feelings physically, and would have if the six people in the church had not (separately) gone forward with concerns. He says these feelings are something he never felt for me. He has insisted on a divorce from the minute this affair became known. The other woman finally told her husband (four months later) and she is also insisting on a divorce now. Her husband is getting the same treatment from the church. They won’t even meet with him.

My husband is willing to transfer in June (military) and leave me and our son behind. He has his “Christian” family’s love, support and compassion. None of them have called to see how I am. His Father and Brother both did this same thing to their first wives.

We have been married 14 years. I believed God was blessing me with a wonderful Godly man that I met in Sunday School. We were married in church before God, our friends and family, served in ministry together for years and lived a “Christian marriage”. I always felt things would get better and there was hope that we would get the deep Godly marriage I knew was waiting for us. To look back now, the signs were there and I should have looked deeper into his heart and faith. But even now, I believe in a God that can transform and bring anything to life if asked. I guess it has to be desired from both of us. The thing I need prayer and advice with is, how do I let go of the man that I fully committed to, loved with my whole heart and feel “one flesh” with? How could he still go to church, insist he is strong with God, be surrounded by Godly people that are his support, and still wake up every day with determination to do this. They all must know the awful truth of what I must have done. I mean, he opens up to everyone else but me. What could I have done so terrible to deserve this? We had a marriage others said they wished they had. ha ha

I have supported him through four advancements in his career a BA and MA degree. I was the one who added the commas, changed the wording, corrected the spelling and earned a lot of the credit for those degrees. But that’s what a wife does. He has become so prideful and worldly in the last few years and it breaks my heart to leave him behind in this condition. I gave up my degree when I met him and have been a housewife and home-school Mom. I lost both of my parents suddenly, two months apart in 2008. I grieved alone because my husband was uncomfortable with my crying, and the money they left paid off all of our debt. He then went out and bought an Audi. He’s like a teenager racing other cars down the street and showing off. He has status at work now and a larger paycheck that hardly ever got tithed in our fourteen years of marriage.

I am so confused because I know I didn’t have the Christian man I thought I was marrying, but I can’t let go of what I know God is capable of. The months I was loving him, crying in the bathroom, putting myself back together and coming out and asking “What do you want for dinner, Dear?”, God would not release me from the marriage. No matter how much I begged in the midst of the cruelty my husband was throwing at me. Then on February 11th, I woke up with such peace and a true release from the marriage. I think God wanted me to know the difference when the release came. I know God has an amazing life waiting for me, and so much blessing for my faithfulness. He has already begun to bring that to light. I am just so tired of feeling a joy about the future God is bringing and then the next day feeling like I need to fight for my husband and marriage.
I can say that God is giving me one of the biggest gifts a Christian could ever receive. I am learning that all of my joy, peace, fulfillment, love and happiness comes from Him first. I depend on Him for EVERYTHING. That is worth it all. I am just so shocked at how much satan does this to our Christian marriages. He doesn’t change his “mo”. It works every time, so why should he? I am angry that he keeps getting our marriages and the church doesn’t stand up and fight back in a direct, quick and assertive way. Not one man approached my husband about what he was doing, the Pastor stays out of these situations and loving my husband and the other woman through their rough time was the only approach taken. I tried the Matthew 18:15-17 approach and was told to “leave it alone and don’t make trouble for the other woman and my husband”. The sinner is treated with love, patience and support. I was turned away.

I know with God, I will get through this, but how do I know when to let go and label myself as a “divorcee”? I am so embarrassed and hate that my son is now from a broken home. I pray I can trust a man again, all the women I meet in church and a church that would have my back. I know I will with God, but my emotions are so raw, I am devastated and satan just keeps on attacking. I am better than I was a couple of weeks ago. As long as I continue to see and feel God’s work in me, I know I’ll get through this. God will give me a ministry again, and maybe it will be to love those women that are going through this very thing. To help pick them up off the bathroom floor when they’re begging God to just “bring them home now”, because the pain is too much.
This is the one and only time I have ever done this type of thing on the computer. Thank you for creating this site and helping the ones that appear to be ignored the most. The shattered spouses who watch their entire lives crumble around them. Nobody knows what it’s like to be in our shoes, unless they’ve been there themselves.


{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jason

Karen,

Thank you for taking the time to share… Recovery can take a long time but we just keep working on it. People aren’t perfect and churches are made of people. God has His ways and nobody gets off scott free without consequences. May God bless you and your son and help you to keep pressing on and fill your heart with peace.

2 Earl

KAREN,
I am so sorry for what you are going through.My
wife left me and our three beautyful chrildren for a
man she was having an affair with.I know how alone
and betrayed you must feel.I hope knowing that I
will be praying for you and your son will give you some comfort.
Lisen to the song “Held” by Natalie Grant.God will
never let you go.There is hope.I have recovered and
have a wonderful life.You will too.

3 Deborah

I am so sorry for all you have been through and are still going through. I had a similar experience a few years ago and I understand your confusion at the actions of your church. I think being PC has a very strong hold on a lot of Christians and they ignore clear Bible principles to avoid what they would consider ‘unpleasant conflict’. It is not only not loving towards you, it’s not loving towards your husband either as it encourages him to stay in his sin and indeed pursue it.
But take heart, God sees all and will not be mocked. Their path is not your responsibility, follow God and leave them to follow who they will.
God spoke to me often out of the book of Isaiah, there are many promises in there for you, and He will do what he says He will do, it just takes time. I have four children and they and myself are closer to God now than we ever could have imagined. God has a plan for your life, He will release and heal you from all pain and despair just hang on to Him with all your strength and when you haven’t any left He’ll give you more. This situation has not caught Him by surprise, He will open the Red Sea before you and lead you through. Amazing freedom and joy will be yours eventually, I guarantee it!!

4 Shannon

Oh Karen! I read your story and my heart broke! For it was like you were telling parts of my story. A major difference though is my ex left our church and my church surrounded my daughter and I and frankly if he had stayed I believe they still would have treated us the same. I can not say what God is doing but I would really pray about finding a new body to worship in. I understand the struggle oh so well for the laying down and picking back up your love for your husband. I struggled with that for almost 2 years. What I believe God revealed to me is that I was bound by law with my ex. I tried to ‘earn’ his love for me for 22 years. Everything I did revolved around him first. I didn’t just dedicate my life to my family I allowed my life to be my family. Although Christ does call two to become one I do know for certain that He also wants us to have an individual relationship with Him and that a marriage is a reflection of God’s relationship with us. Therefore grace is what covers the relationship. I think it is impossible to have the marriage God desires for us without first understanding the relationship Christ wants for us. God is love so love will follow scripture. Abandoning your family, breaking the marriage covenant, and all of the rest that these spouses have done COMPLETELY goes against any and all scripture…so what they are doing has nothing to do with love. It is very hard as a christian to weed through all of this. The focus has to be the Lord, He allowed this for a reason and we have to trust that He will provide everything for us, clinging to the promises in scripture. I will pray for you and your son! Feel free to contact me at any time. (Through email or FB) I do believe that it is very important for us to encourage and uplift one another. God bless you!!!!

5 Don

Karen
My divorce was final last week, thanks for sharing your testimony. Your right satans Mo is working, my story is a lot like yours…there is hope.
Don

6 josie

I am in the beginning of a separation with my husband. I am lost. I have pushed God off to the side and my husband is not a christian. I should have known better to involve myself, he decided after six years of marriage that he wants out. I am leaving soon and I dont know how to let go. I am seeking out my Creator as I should have from the start but my heart is broken. If anyone reads this, please pray for me. I dont have the strength right now to do anything. I breathe because God gives me breath. I cant sleep, or eat. I also pray that God gives me the strength to get through this.

7 Allison

Karen,
Oh how my heart aches for you and how you must feel, being betrayed by so many people at once.
God has revealed shocking truths to you and I truly believe you have been blessed although it may not seem that way to you.
It appears that God loves you so much that he has and
is revealing a new plan for you that will put you in a
better place with your relationship with him. He has seperated YOU from the rest of these that are not in God’s word.
Read the bible daily, ask the holy spirit for comfort and direction in your life. God desires peace and love for his people.
I was betrayed by my husband three years ago and I
must say that my relationship with God has grown to new heights every day. These negative life events draws us closer to God and helps us to see … he is the source of life and how much we need him.

8 Kimberly

Karen,
Just reminding you as I am sure you have realized that churches are full of the broken and lost. Please know that many of the behaviors from others you described are not Christ like . I hope you find a new church family who is readily there to show you the compassion we as a body should have for those mourning and dealing with injustice and the things that God hates.

I too felt so sorrowful and disappointed for all the trauma my daughter was subjected to and now feels as she sees our marriage come to divorce.
One night when praying about how sad I was for my child’s pain , I cam upon this scripture.
“(1)Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, (2)through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. (3)Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; (4)perseverance, character; and character, hope. (5)And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.” – Romans 5:1-5 (NIV)
From that day on i focussed on not how broken my daughter would be, but how God promised that even her little spirit would persevere , develop character and have hope. What a great time for them to see us depend on the Lord,and learn to do the same.
As mothers we want to protect our kids from hurts, but life is full of them, and as we humble ourselves and forget the labels, and become dependent On God so will they.
my prayers are with you, Kimberly

9 Elizabeth

Karen

I too have been hurt by the church response in handling my situation when I approached them for help to talk to my then husband. Instead of confronting him for his adultery and setting him on the path of righteousness they sympathized and believed in his lies instead of listening to my side of the story and belittled me, feeding me with self condemnation for being responsible in pushing him into the arms of another woman. They did not recognize my effort to save the marriage and his to continue the other way, The Pastor and leaders who had spoken to him felt no matter what he did – adultery is
pardonable and that I should excuse his action and turn the other cheek shocked me. After the divorce the ‘pastoral team’ ‘disappeared’ when they should be helping me deal with the hurts, I was pushed aside as one who failed God, as one leader said ‘you allowed satan victory by not clinging on’. He didn’t even hear my side of the story how I have pleaded and even begged my ex to stay but he wouldn’t and God had revealed to me I needed to set myself free from this marriage before it destroy me. Now I’m praying God will help me and forgive the church. It sadden my heart I’m not the only one who have been treated in this manner as having spoke to more women I realized they felt they have been ‘snubbed’ by the church in similar situation. The church should be vessel to bless and help those in need but… I thank God that He had taught me to depend on Him alone cause man will fail but God never. Pray the church of Christ will rise up to what they are called to do and most important to equip themselves to help ‘save’ marriages, what’s the use of winning more souls when at the end of the day they are lost once again and even worst when they come out of church with more hurt and prospective of God??? Will the church listen to the cry of God’s heartbeat to love and care for His sheep?? I grief for the churches of today who have been complacent in loving His people but rejoice in the truth that God will raise up for Himself the perfect church..so we wait and do not lose heart but keep on praying for healing for those hurt by the church .. And the revelation of God’s heartbeat to the pastors and leaders over His beloved…we must also be careful not to be judgmental and seek God for vengeance but rather through what we have experienced to birth forth from our pain a heart that grief over the church …

Liz

Liz

10 Chris

My partner had an affair, but our church seemed to favor my partner instead of me. Makes no sense to me either

11 Miranda

You all are more than welcomed to come to my church. Northwest Christian Fellowship Church out of the small town of Varnell GA. I say that because … i am going thru separation and possibly divorce. And my church has been there for me 100%. I guess the difference would be that my husband did not attend the church at the time of his unfaithfullness. but used to attend years ago. And most the people of the church already could see and tell he had fallen back int sin life. When my husband decided he wasnt sure what he wanted..to be married or not… blamed it on me.. then a week later decided to confess of his affair…. and still could not decide what he wanted I realized God had offered me an oppurtune moment to get out of this marriage that had beat me down for the last three years. We married both in the will of The Lord 7 years ago… but 3 years ago all that changed… and the world and his PRIDE became his main focus later leading to the most heart wrenching thing I have ever felt. A broken heart from his love affair. Im still recovering everyday God is refreshing me and renewing my heart. But I Have to say my church family has been behind me 100%. They even went as far as to make a reinstatement payment on my home for me so that my daughter and I would not lose our home. My husband has not provided for us financially in 2 years… has made money for him to go on.. But nothing toward our bills. So we got WAY behind on ALL bills. I work fulltime and put all my paycheck toward our bills each week but still was not enough. Anyway I do encourage those of you to know.. that there are true church families out there who look to God to teach love and care to their members andthose that are struggling. There are those who reach out that helping hand more than they have to… You just keep looking to God he will place people in your life to give you the help and care that you need. DONT LOSE HOPE!

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