I know we’ve all been hearing a lot about the upcoming Valentine’s Day. I’ve seen many posts offering unique gifts for your spouse. Some of these have great suggestions. However, if you’re like me, there may have been times that Valentine’s Day was painful. Many of you are struggling to rebuild your marriage. Some of you are feeling hopeless with the cycle of your husband’s lust.
There have been a few Valentine’s Days that brought me deep sadness. But, this year, I’d like to offer a post with some hopeful gifts for your husband. The first year after I found out about my husband’s pornography viewing and unfaithfulness, I felt awful. I couldn’t think about getting him the usual mushy-type gifts. This is why I think Valentine’s Day can be a nice opportunity to give him a gift of encouragement. Some gifts can bring us closer to each other and the Lord. Of course, if you’re working toward reconciliation, still give him the gift you know he’ll love.
So, here are some gifts to provide your marriage with hope. Some of these I’ve given to my husband.
I am happy to share with you today’s post from Bonny Logsdon Burns. She is the author and founder of OysterBed7.
Robi’s blog name is dead-on. Active hope is how God continues to lead me after our marriage’s initial devastation with pornography. Thank you, Robi, for allowing me to share my hope with your readers.
With our 2-year-old son asleep in the next room, I try to haul my pregnant belly into bed. I’m 35 weeks ginormous with identical twin boys. I lift my feet off the floor just as I hear the sound of a freight train outside, the tell-tale sign of a tornado.
A lifetime of tornado drills put my husband and I in auto-pilot. We know exactly what to do to have the greatest chance of survival.
It takes 60 seconds for the violent, F4 tornado to clear a path in our neighborhood. I barely have time to ask God for help.
The break of day finds me trembling in a hospital bed as I watch the aftermath on television. I weep from horror and gratefulness as I see the massive debris field of my neighborhood.
The first decade of my marriage was like this tornado. It was only in retrospect that I saw clues that a tornado was coming. We had foul weather swirling; nasty attitudes, disregard, dismissive and condescending behavior; until it all converged in devastating fall-out.
Christmas is coming. With this realization, comes a lot of excitement. Most of us are preparing for this Christmas season. There is much to do with decorating and exchanging gifts. We’ve put the tree up and started playing Christmas carols.
I have many beautiful memories of past Christmas Days. I’ve always particularly loved Christmas and all the astonishment surrounding it.
However, despite all this joy, I know that me and you have painful memories of Christmas time. Maybe you are caught right in the middle of a struggling marriage. Or maybe you have been on your way to restoration. But, there are still painful memories. Whichever situation you are in today, God is with you.
This prayer is for the wife who is discouraged by her husband’s past or present pornography use.
I am coming to You, Father, because I am discouraged. I am saddened by my husband’s pornography use. Many times I want to give up hope.
Often, it is hard to see and understand God’s plan in our circumstances. Many times I have had difficulty figuring out what God wanted from me. You can read more about my story here.
I hear from many wives wondering why their marriage has gone like this. They wonder why has God allowed this to happen in my life. They say, “why does my husband have to have this problem with pornography and lust?” I have wondered those same things many times.
Obviously the hurt that comes to a wife after she finds out about her husband’s problem with pornography and lust affects the whole family. The family is now going through an unexpected crisis. And this impacts everyone in the family.
A reader asked if I would comment on the impact that this has on our children. She left this suggestion on the page Feedback from Readers. This is a great way to ask questions or to suggest ideas for future posts.
I would like to share with you a group I have started on Facebook. This group is for wives who are hurting from their husbands pornography use or unfaithfulness. It is a “secret” group on Facebook. This means that no one can see the posts or the names of the people in the group except group members.
We just got back from our family vacation. It was really nice to relax and spend time together. I had very limited internet access while I was away, which made it even more relaxing because I was able to do “nothing” and rest!
When I was able to read the comments on the last post, I thought of a few things. First, I was reminded that there are many wives who are deeply hurting. Like I do many times, they feel alone and scared. They have no idea what to do. Then, I thought of the main reason I started this site. It is and always will be:
Hope and Healing for Hurting Wives
I recently posted When Thoughts Trouble You. This post was about overcoming those difficult, satanic thoughts that come to us. One comment mentioned that this is easier when your husband is doing the right thing. That is, of course, right. It is so much easier to follow God and overcome our thoughts when our husband is following God himself. It helps when he is living out a faithful, loving lifestyle. But, what can you do if your husband is not? How can you grow and heal through God? And how can you help guide your husband to God? I would like to talk about some suggestions in this post.
First, I would like to explain that my husband did not instantly follow God after I found out about his pornography addiction and unfaithfulness. If you are new to this site, you can read more about my story here. I just want to let you know that it was a very long time before my husband followed God and was completely repentant. Looking back, it really happened in small parts. God uncovered each thing one at a time. God showed us both the area we needed to grow in. And that was the area we worked on. We are never a completed process. But, we are continually working to grow closer to God and each other.
Sometimes when wives read my posts and my guest posts, they comment or ask how my husband instantly came to God or how my marriage was restored “over night”. This is really far from the truth and I want all of you to know that God has worked slowly to bring my marriage where it is today. I am starting to see how this is part of God’s plan too. It would be impossible to immediately fix all the things that were hurt and broken in both of us. Usually, God’s way is to gently draw us closer to him. I am going to continue sharing how we both got to the place we are today. But, for this post, I just want to focus on a few important points.
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.