Permit me to give a few disclaimers: I share this story with my husband’s blessing. I share this information not because I necessarily want to. I assure you, this is not fun. I share our story because my husband and I know we aren’t the only ones who have endured this tragedy. We want to carry the hope we now have to readers who are in rough places in their marriages or who are simply having a really rough time away from home.
We were three years into our marriage and two years into what we came to know later as “unexplained infertility” when we found ourselves traveling to Thailand for rest and relaxation with our organization. Heartbroken by the baby that wasn’t coming, I was looking very forward to catching up with all my American friends and eating all the food I had been missing so desperately.
On the list: Starbucks, Mediterranean anything, and all the avocado I could manage to eat. Right before we left, however, I started having severe jaw trouble. It got so bad I had difficulty opening my mouth at all. The doctors advised me to “drink only smoothies and don’t talk.” So ironic. Eating and talking had been my ENTIRE vacation plan…
Things were hard but they were about to get exponentially worse. One afternoon my husband sat me down and confessed that he had been unfaithful to me. The thought of this being an actual event happening in my life was hard to wrap my head around. SURELY what he just said was not what he actually meant. I must have heard him wrong. Was he making it up? Playing a seriously jacked up joke? This couldn’t happen to us. We were the best of friends and we had a really happy marriage.
Seven years later, I can safely say we made it through the heartbreak of infidelity because God held us. He provided for all our needs by giving us His perspective and providing through His people.
My husband wasn’t caught and I would never have known he was unfaithful if he had not confessed. He was very clearly heartbroken over his actions and told me as soon he could. He knew he needed to tell me because God says we need to confess things to one another. In the following weeks and months my husband gave me full permission to tell who I needed to tell and get help from wherever I wanted.
He put plans in place to avoid being in that same situation again and let me talk to him about my feelings regarding the situation as much as I needed. I really needed to process everything. He was the one who had broken my heart but he was also my best friend. And I really needed my best friend during that time. My response was miraculous (and had nothing to do with me). I struggle with anger and fear. But when he confessed to me, I didn’t get angry.
The thing I remember thinking was that I had been forgiven SO much by God. I had also been forgiven so many times by my husband. He is a kind and steady man who graciously deals with my issues on a daily basis. I remember telling my husband that even taking into account the infidelity, I still think he drew the short end of the marriage stick. Being able to think that way and say those things was God’s perspective at work.
The people of my company surrounded both my husband and I with amazing love and resources. We were given guidance and choices. God used His people to provide exactly what we needed to begin the long healing process.
I can honestly say that because of the help we sought from God’s people and the perspective He graciously gave each of us, we enjoy a remarkably strong marriage today. Before this happened I would have thought something like this would have ended our marriage. There was heartbreak and lots of tears but I can truthfully say I trust my husband. I don’t worry that he’s making bad choices and I don’t monitor his activities. His actions weakened our marriage for a time but I am well aware that my selfishness and snarky comments also weaken our marriage and those things happen almost daily; his thing happened once.
I’m not minimizing infidelity. What I aim to do here is maximize God’s ability to work everything out for our good if we love Him (Romans 8:28). If you find yourself in a similar spot or are experiencing a crisis of another variety I would heartily encourage you to seek out community with other believers and pray diligently for God’s perspective on the situation. He who called you is faithful. You are held.
Are you in need of God’s perspective on something? Where do you need to lean into community right now?
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