We’ve been discussing thoughts several times recently. We looked at a question from a wife who had troubling thoughts. Then, I talked about what we think about in an Update on My Marriage and the recent Restoring Marriages Bible Study. Many readers also commented on how they struggle with these thoughts as well. Someone even brought up how current events can make us remember the bad things that have happened. Then we get stuck and dwell on them. This is one issue that seems to be so difficult for every wife who finds out about her husband’s secrets. That is why I thought I would continue with this topic.
Today we are going to study turning to God with all of our hearts.
If you would like to see the Restoring Marriages Bible Study Days 1-8, please click here.
Turning to God
Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. (Matthew 7:13-14 NKJV)
When we go through a crisis in our marriage, we realize how uncertain life can be. Maybe you had dreams about the way your life was to go. Maybe your finding out for the first time that life is a very difficult path. Wherever you are right now, one thing is very certain. We need God. We cannot go through these trials without God. When we try to do it our own way, we end up hopeless.
Jesus came to give us hope.
I decided that this would be a good time to give an update on my marriage. If you are new to this site, I have started giving periodic updates. The first update was here if you missed it. I started this because it is an open and honest way to share how my husband and I are currently doing with rebuilding our marriage. I had started this site so that I could share my story of discovering my husband’s pornography use. But, I came to realize that it’s important to share where we are currently and how we are struggling or growing.
Below is a question about overcoming painful memories:
I was reading your blog. One sentence said, ” For wives this might mean to stop thinking about the past.” That is the hardest task in my recovery, I just can’t escape the triggered thoughts from bringing me or my feelings down. I have been married for 34 years and I truly loved and respected my husband during what I thought was a good marriage. Nine months after discovery I seem to be recovering fairly well from my husbands secret life of porn, dating sites and philandering because he is cooperating and doing what is right to restore the relationship, but there is one thing that I trip on. Thoughts. The problem: I can be driving or at work and have a sudden thought of what happened or how I visualize it occurred. It hurts. Driving seems to be the most frequent times it occurs. I have desperately searched for a way to recover from this bolt of pain and fear I get during those moments. I have tried ignoring the thoughts, I have tried saying to myself, ” Here is a thought, it is what happened or what I feared occurred during his wandering, it was wrong – it was a foolish act, but now it is time for that thought to leave. Recognizing the thought seems to allow the fear to be displaced better than ignoring it. But the thoughts do return time to time. This — may be the one thing that harms the betrayed one, the inability to get past triggered thoughts. I have search for the one true remedy — how to get through moments – moments when these triggered thoughts burst forth. Hiding from them doesn’t seem to lessen the thoughts from returning. The scary inner thoughts are corrosive to the foundation of marriage. What is an effective way to work through the moment, so the thoughts don’t spread or fester – leading into hours or days of darkness.
It was three and a half years ago that I discovered my husband was addicted to pornography. I had been looking through his phone when I stumbled upon deleted still screens of images from porn websites. It came to me as a total shock. My husband had meticulously deleted all traces of his addiction for ten years. I never even knew he had a problem with lust. This crisis in our marriage set forth many months of difficulties.
9 Thoughts That Can Change Your Marriage is written by Sheila Wray Gregoire. It is an excellent book for any marriage. It contains new thoughts that can revolutionize the way many women think about their marriages. Sheila is the founder of the blog To Love, Honor, and Vacuum. Many times her posts have helped me in my marriage. Her perspective and wisdom on so many marriage topics is a true gift from God. I recommend all of her books.
Today, I would like to explain how one of the thoughts in her book changed my entire marriage. The thought is:
“I’m called to be a peacemaker, not a peacekeeper.”
Sheila explains how many women think that they are supposed to keep the peace in the marriage by agreeing with their husbands on the outside, but hurting deeply on the inside. In a way they think they have to let their husbands have their way with everything just to keep him happy and have a peaceful home. But, this isn’t real peace and in the end it is destruction.
This way of thinking led to many problems in my own marriage.
This is a prayer for guidance. It is for the wife who knows her husband watches pornography or is unfaithful and doesn’t know what to do.
I am coming to you today for guidance. God, I am so lost and confused. I have no idea what to do. All I know is that I am hurting and that this isn’t right. I know I have to do something. But, God I need Your guidance.
Sharing My Story: The Sad Truth
This is a part of our story that still hurts today. If I think about it I can still feel the deep pain from that day. However, I feel it’s important to share it. I’d like you all to know exactly how our story unraveled. God has brought redemption and restoration to our marriage. But, that doesn’t mean that we haven’t been through a lot of hurt. I think sometimes people assume that when we follow God, we shouldn’t feel hurt. That is not true at all. Most of you know that in marriage there is a lot of hurt. The saddest part to me is that my love story really was never true. I wasn’t my husband’s only one. And this truth can crush you with pain. It’s something that we experience as wives when our husbands choose this path. That is why we have to turn to something higher. That is why we have to trust in God and accept God’s love for us. He is the only one that can love us perfectly.
I just created a new page called Sharing My Story. It contains the links to each part of my story in order. I hope that makes it more convenient if you are just started reading or if you would like to read anything again.
This is a prayer for beauty. It is for any wife who discovers her husband has viewed pornography.
I am coming to you today about something painful. It is something deep in my heart that is broken. It is raw and empty. It is about beauty.
This is a post written by my husband for your husband. You can read a prayer written by him here. You can also check out the Ask My Husband page. Additionally, there is a new post for the Restoring Marriages Bible Study so that you can find all the days on one post.
Cleansing Your Mind: For Husbands
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy- meditate on these things.(NKJV)
Image after image after image followed by more images. Why won’t they go away? I just want to follow you God. I promise this is the last time I act on these images.