Forgiveness: The Door to Healing
By Eva Marie
“Where have you been? You left here at 6:30 last night and it is now 2:30 in the morning.” I was hot, red-hot! He wouldn’t answer me. “You were with someone, weren’t you?” He still wouldn’t answer me. I screamed insults of all the words I ever knew in my whole life!
“Yes I was with someone,” he finally said. “She doesn’t mean anything to me. You don’t know her and nobody knows about it.”
“You promised me you wouldn’t do this again!” I spit out. “It’s over, I’m done.” I ranted and raved like a madwoman. He just acted uncaring about the whole thing. Cool as a cucumber.
This wasn’t the first time. It was one of many. Each time I forgave and took him back. Wasn’t that the godly thing to do? “If you love someone you will hardly ever notice when he/she does you wrong.” The Love Chapter, right? Ha! Where was God in our marriage? Why couldn’t my husband overcome his habit of being unfaithful?
“Well God, I’m not taking him back again, not even if You ask me to,” I said bitterly.
“That will be your decision, not Mine,” I heard His voice gently say.
I made a decision then to follow after Christ with all my heart, and my husband could do as he pleased. I didn’t realize at the time that he would try to get help for his problem.
A Health and Healing seminar was coming up at our church and he wanted to go. “Do you want to go?” he asked me.
“No,” I replied quite strongly.” You go, I thought! Make a commitment to go and I want to see you carry it through! I want to see change in you!
My husband seemed to be enjoying the seminar after a few days. So I decided to go. The leader, Keri talked about the 25 roadblocks to physical healing. One of the roadblocks was unforgiveness. I didn’t think there was unforgiveness in me. At the end of the session, an invitation for prayer was given. I went up for prayer for numbness and tingling in my feet, not thinking that could be related to my heart condition.
Keri started talking with me and for some reason I got on the subject of our marriage. I told her some of the details, mainly that we were living in the same house together and that was it. I thought she said, “What you are doing is wrong, and you need to change.” But I believed my husband needed to change!
I went home and cried a lot. “Why God, is it always me that has to change? I’m tired of it. Let him be the one who has to change for once. I can’t do it anymore!”
The following day of the Health and Healing seminar, we broke up into groups for prayer. Doug and Betty were assigned to us. I really dragged my feet. I didn’t want anyone praying for us. I submitted to prayer, however, I was uptight the whole time. “Just get me out of here God, “ I said.
Saturday afternoon and evening I cried continually. I didn’t know why except that life seemed so unfair. I wanted to see him change without me doing anything. Sunday morning I was still crying at church. I was too stubborn to leave and yet felt like a fool sitting there sobbing. Some strange feeling kept creeping up in my chest and neck. It would be unbearable one minute and quiet down the next. I didn’t go for prayer that morning. Perhaps I was still being stubborn. I had no idea what was going on inside of me.
We were driving home in our car when I felt this oppressive spirit rise up again. I thought, “This thing is going to kill me.” That’s how strong it felt.
I said, “Let’s stop at our son’s house so I can have his wife pray for me.” We pulled up in their driveway, and my husband went in to get Jill. She came out immediately. She prayed and whatever it was, left. In an instant I was okay. I was so thankful she was there.
A week passed and I began to understand what happened. Freedom! I was free from 42 years of hurt and pain. It was gone. A miracle! Only God could have done this. Before, I had no desire, no will, to think fondly of my husband again. I saw that every time he did something, which reminded me of the past, the anger would rise up in me and I would explode. Anger is a sure sign that something is wrong inside.
Pastor prayed for my husband at one of our revival meetings. He physically cut the chains that bound him with a chopping motion around his whole body. Many people prayed before and during the meeting. My husband was freed too! Exactly when we are not sure. “ I always wanted to be free of that sin, but had no power over it. I’d repent, be okay, and it would come right back,” he said. The enemy does walk around like a roaring lion seeking whom he can devour.
God changed both of us in incredible ways. Every woman wants to be respected, honored, loved, and treated kindly, like Christ would the church. I saw my husband treating me like a lady … being sweet, kind and jovial … like when we first met, and I responded with respect, kindness, gentleness and love towards him. I would serve him supper in his favorite chair, rub his feet and go the extra mile. Every husband wants to be loved, respected, admired and believed in too. We began to live like a married couple who let Christ reign in their lives should. No more arguments, hurt feelings and silence for days.
Is everything perfect? No! But now we can sit down and talk it out.
”Do you know how that made me feel?” he says. “No, I never meant it that way.” I reply. We had no idea how our words sounded to each other, and how often we fell into the trap of hurting each other. I believe the devil knows how to twist things around to get couples fighting.
I’m thankful that we have a God who performs miracles. He did exceedingly, abundantly above what I asked, thought or even imagined. He played a fast one on me when I told God, “I’m not taking him back again no matter what!” He knew my heart and my future when He responded with, “That will be your decision, not mine.”
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20, New Living Translation)
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Eva Marie is a wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She has been married to her husband for 50 years. They farmed for years and still live on that farm in Herscher, Illinois. She has been published in "Message of the Open Bible", "The Christian Communicator", and in several book articles.
© Eva Marie. Used with permission.
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