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Divorce is ugly. It is devastating. It can be isolating. It causes confrontations and it is a Killer. The Good News About Divorce: You get to START OVER! If you are still breathing, a blessing is just beyond the brink. I pray that you go for it; crawling, crying, climbing, walking, wailing, worshipping- God Expects You to Make It-WHOLE! While there are countless online resources and books to help you recover from a divorce; I am providing a few tips based on my personal experiences of both failure and success, as well as what I have learned over the years to FREEDOM! Let’s look at the word RECOVERY:
The Do’s and Maybe you should Think About That…
RELEASE the Offense and the Offender. This is the most crucial part of Recovery. The enemy already led you both to divorce for whatever reason. Don’t give him anymore of your God-Given life, time, energy or power by holding your ex hostage. It only keeps you captive too. How are you going to effectively move in your purpose with the weight of bitterness and negativity riding your back?
REMEMBER why you got divorced. Be it abuse, adultery or abandonment that you didn’t see coming, or a combination; you have to remember the WHY. As you do, try not to remember it from a place of pain (this will take time), but from a renewed perspective to protect yourself from returning to an unhealthy situation for both parties.
REVENGE is not your friend. Don’t look for it and if it comes your way; pray for the other person. If someone cut you with a sharp knife; you will experience shock, pain and then anger. As you reflect on the cut, one of those emotions will surface; most likely anger. The Bible says: Be angry and sin not. Revenge is sin. God says: Vengeance is mine; I will repay. Both people have an ought here, which means that both parties will catch it in some form or another from HIM for cutting the Covenant in the 1st place. (If you have already survived this consequence; thank God and keep reading). Sometimes consequence can just be sleepless nights.
REGRET Don’t regret haven been married or divorced. Both were lessons that you are or will learn from. Regret breeds contempt and depression. Try to avoid rehearsing the wedding and regurgitating every bad thing that happened in both states. Allow God time and space to heal so that when you do look back on the reflection of what was; all you see is the Hand of God on both lives. Grace on two people.
REJECTING therapy is a bad idea. Sometimes common sense doesn’t come until after a mistake is made. Then comes wisdom as appropriate tools are employed that are effective to ensure proper growth and to defray setbacks. Therapy is often rejected by Christians. It is also often rejected by anyone in a leadership position. This isn’t the time to be the Superhero of your own story. Strength seeks wise, licensed counsel as often as necessary. STRENGTH WISDOM. If you are going to go from “Strength to Strength,” you need both a strategy and someone to spot you.
EVALUATE yourself. EXPRESS yourself to God. EXAMINE your patterns. It is OK to go to God and say: “You know what? This hurts like hell, I am mad as hell and I am not trying to GO to hell, so before I do something stupid and damn myself to a place Christ died to keep me from; here is my heart. Here are all of my emotions. You made me. You know how I feel and you are the only one that can fix me and this. While you are at it, help my ex because even if I don’t see it; they are going through too!” This is not the time to be eloquent with God. You don’t need to talk to Him in homiletics. You don’t need to speak in tongues (although depending on your level of pain-your prayer language may keep you sane and out of trouble). As you sit with Him, ask Him to show you what HE sees in you-all of it.
Don’t despise what He shows you. Yes, you may have been done wrong. Yes, the person may have apologized profusely. But—if you are attempting to walk in forgiveness and they are continuing to find fault with you; you have a problem that only HE can heal and give you strategy for at the same time. I like to call it STRATEGIC SURGERY and everyone isn’t invited into YOUR operating room. He will show you the wonderful parts of you before you got married, in the marriage and the possibilities (not a mate) that lie before you. Ask God to show you by the WORD because we as humans don’t like to look at the whole X-ray in the examination room. We just want Him to fix it real fast. Here is the problem: If God does NOT show you all of it; what happens if what you refused to look at creeps back up 2 years from now?
CLEAR Cut: COMMUNICATE–but not with the whole country. Use those trusted people that you know you can talk to who won’t pacify your pain, but won’t dismiss it is as invalid either. Be honest. Tell them: “I don’t want you to talk back. I just want you to listen and pray for or with me.” (Sometimes if you allow them to talk back and they are close to you, they WILL take sides). If you need space from them; tell them. Have at least one contact person that you can check in with to let others know you are okay and to continue praying. Others are affected by the divorce too. Make sure you at LEAST consider them in a way that is safe and beneficial for all. People don’t like to be confused. Not if they love you. CREATE new boundaries. CHILL OUT. Go somewhere that will remove you from the memories for a few months, moments or minutes. If you can’t afford to jet-set to Fiji, find yourself a new park and calm down. Breathe. While everything is going on around you; you have to have peace within yourself-even if you can’t make peace with the other person.
OBSERVE your patterns; especially your ebb and flow around others and when alone. Try to avoid looking back at what your ex is doing or not doing and focus on your own behavior, both healthy and unhealthy, so that you don’t repeat the negative ones. This is vital for your grow forward into becoming the person that God always intended you to be.
Victory doesn’t come to those who succumb to the VICTIM mentality. The only real victim that divorcees are prey to is the enemy who made them part ways. If you assume this role, everything is the other person’s fault-EVEN if you are the one who cut the covenant. It is easy to blame wearing a band aid. You will find something wrong to exempt you from your part in the divorce. Don’t vilify them or yourself. It was the devil. He is defeated.
VICES can be vicious. “Pick your venom wisely.” Anything can become a vice during and after a divorce. This includes WORK too. Avoid self-medicating with anything from sex, to alcohol to drugs; anything that isn’t healthy or Christ-like. Quick-fixes are easy. They numb the pain that we don’t want to feel and make us feel “better” but they do not heal us, nor do they lead to wholeness. Social Media can be a vice too. And you know people that know you or think they know you are just waiting to see “how you doeerinng?” *Kermit*
EXERCISE! Both your physical body and feed your spirit with positive things. And above all; exercise self-control. Don’t you just LOVE that fruit? It forces you to show RESTRAINT and be GRACIOUS when you really want to go OFF. I mean what was God thinking when He threw that on in the fruit basket? Goodness. Let’s move on….
REBOUNDS are GREAT….. In Basketball; not in LOVE. Emotions are tied to the physical parts of both male and females. Look up the word PREPUCE. When your heart has been circumcised before the LORD; it should be sensitive to HIM not to “them.” Whoever they are. Whoever they are “attempting to be in assisting you through sexually.” When you allow people in that space during or after a divorce that should NOT have access there, the activity goes this way: Down from there and up straight to your heart and head. Women, your heart is too sensitive for this. It is designed to be protected and guarded and covered. Men, you need your mind to function. David said; When my heart is overwhelmed within me, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I. Psalms 61, etc…. There is no way as a man that his heart could have become overwhelmed if his head wasn’t already on overload.
Men you are thinkers. You analyze. You observe. Women you are feelers. You take it and you dish out. Ladies; stop being “busy” to keep your mind off the divorce. You are not Mouthy Messy Martha. Sit at the feet of Jesus like Mary and soak up what He has to say so that you don’t allow a “seat filler” to pour into you. Men, go to the Rock. Stand there like the Champions you are and know that you as well are too good to give your body to just anybody because you have to “get it out.” Give it to Jesus. So that when you DO or IF you DO marry again (for the last time, amen to Jesus) it is special. It is sacred. It is as Heaven intended. Neither party needs to carry an ex or a potential next into a new relationship. SPACE and PACE. Ladies; ask God to give you your virginity back. And keep it tight (yes I said it) until what has been tailored to fit there (for the last time, amen to Jesus) doesn’t hurt you.
YIELD to God’s Sovereignty. He is not surprised at where you are. Yield to HIS process for you. Let GOD do the recovery. Pray without ceasing, keep the wrong people out of your ear, and don’t hop out of triage with a tourniquet falling off. Go through. Give God the right of way so that you can recover the right way. You and Him—alone. Check ball…. Expect to be better and anticipate God to bless you!
New Year, New You, New Life, No Strife! Go Get YOU BACK!
Copyright Natasha Stevens for Never Again Ministries. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.
PS: You look better in 2016 than you do right now. By Summer you should be Glowing! Remember…. I’ve been there. I did things the wrong way and I did them the right way. The right way was and is the best.
To New Beginnings,