From the Heart

Recently I was talking with someone from another ministry who had heard about our daughter’s divorce. It had been a particularly difficult day and I was hurting a good deal when she called. I know she wanted to encourage me, but immediately she began quoting scripture and talking about the spiritual battle.

Now normally, that is where I live, but that particular day my heart was breaking. I so wanted someone to just put their arms around me. I needed to feel an emotional connection at that moment.

Instead I felt badly that I was feeling pain. I told myself I should have been stronger. Why wasn’t I quoting scripture and speaking faith like she was. I scolded myself and resolved to shake off the pain and move on. Yet when I got off the phone, all my resolve melted away. I spent several minutes just crying. The pain of all of it just seemed overwhelming.

The Lord met me there that day and comforted my breaking heart. As I sensed His love and the depth of His understanding of my pain, I realized how many times I had failed to respond to the pain of those who sought my help.

It is often easy to become academic about marriage healing after many years. When the pain is gone, the answers remain. It is the Word of the Lord and faith that make all the difference in a stand, but the pain is real. Over the years that pain had grown dull in my memory. God has used this experience in my life to remind me once again of how very painful divorce is.

When I was standing for our marriage, I was honest with the Lord about my pain. It never bothered Him when I sobbed my heart out or expressed my anger and frustration over our situation. He was always there, loving and encouraging me. In the end, He always brought me back to His Word and strengthened my faith, but He never discouraged my need to express emotions to Him.

Perhaps the key is just that, taking our pain to Him and leaving it there. Bottling it up inside doesn’t help anyone. It comes out one way or another. Denying it isn’t the answer either. Pain is real and it doesn’t go away on its own.

So I guess we must all find the balance between recognizing the pain of wounding and learning to walk in faith in spite of it. It is good to have people in our lives who will cry with us and then encourage us to stand up strong again.

In Luke 7 Jesus came upon a funeral. “And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her. When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, ‘Do not weep.’ Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, arise.’ So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother” Luke 7:11-15.

Jesus brought healing and restored life, but first He had compassion on the widow. He acknowledged her pain. Let that be a lesson for all of us who seek the manifestation of His healing for marriage and family. May we never minimize the pain for it is very real. We can all rejoice, though, that the same One who feels our pain paid the price for our victory and healing. Let Him touch your broken heart today. You can trust Him. Love, Marilyn

“He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3 

Author: Marilyn Phillipps

Married 49 years, we have three children and six grandchildren. My initial career of nursing prepared me to work with marriages that are wounded and in need of healing. For 35 my husband and I have led 2=1 International, a ministry to marriages and families around the world. We have seen miracle after miracle when many had given up hope.

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