Without a Hitch: How to Recover from Divorce
You can recover from divorce. Here are some right and wrong ways to start your new life. Now you are single.
Solitaire is a card game that you play alone. You either win or you lose. If you are divorced, you find yourself playing solitaire every day of your life. And while you are playing this game, you express deep within your spirit some words that sound like this:
“Hey, God, I have been dealt a bad hand. Lord, I am losing at this game. You see I’ve been divorced.” You are playing solitaire. you are forced to play this game. It is lonely. All of the hassles, the legal complexities. You feel so separated. How do you lose at solitaire?
God wants you to win at solitaire. Because as you are playing this game alone you are asking yourself questions like this: “Have I committed the unpardonable sin? Is there life after divorce? What are my options? Where do I turn? Should I consider remarriage? What next?” Here are some unsuccessful ways to handle your divorce.
1. Many who divorce get remarried on the rebound. Wherever the ball lands, whosever hands it falls into, “I now pronounce you husband and wife in the presence of God and these assembled witnesses.” All right, you have won the marital rebounding title. Most marriages on the rebound end in disaster. Watch out for being married on the rebound because you are lonely, you feel so bad, you seek companionship and you say, “Well wherever it lands, I’m getting into another relationship.”
2. We lose ourselves in the marketplace, in a recreational pursuit, anything to take our minds off of our pain. We dive into something. We throw ourselves into it and we just disappear. And people ask, where is Frank? Where is Susan? They have made a swan dive into the abyss of the marketplace. They have made a swan dive into body building or cycling. It’s dangerous to fall into something like that because you think this can mask your pain. It doesn’t work, you’ve got to deal with it, you have got to face it. So the first way to lose at solitaire, the rebound effect. The second way to lose, diving in.
3. You seek revenge. You are divorced and you are angry. In fact, you are really mad and you want to get back at your ex-spouse and you will use anything possible as a weapon to put it in their face. You will trash talk, you will yell at them but you want to show them. So, you reason to yourself, if I can take this football across the goal line, if I can score and the passer can pronounce me husband and wife, I, when I cross the goal line will turn in my spouse’s face and spike the ball. “I told you I am still attractive, I told you I am still good looking, I told you I am worth something.”
Getting re-married or jumping right into another relationship because of revenge is another way to lose.
Oftentimes after divorced people look kind of wounded and they use a syringe. “I’m sick, I need a shot, if I get married, then that will cure me. That will make everything A OK. This person can heal me.”
If you are divorced, if you are playing solitaire, make sure you get whole and healthy before you get remarried. Don’t walk into a relationship with a limp. That doesn’t work.
4. You hide. It is the cage approach. Many separate themselves from everything once a divorce happens, and it is so easy to do, because your world and life is turned upside down; family, friends, children. So, you boldly walk into this cell, slam the door, and you stay there alone. And you figure out alone, you can enroll in the University of Bitterness because they have some correspondence courses you can take from prison, and you can major in depression and negativism and all those other nice subjects.
So you get uninvolved and you separate from friends, from family and especially you separate yourself from the community you need so desperately, the Body of Christ. When a divorce happens, this is when you need to open up and get involved with those meaningful brothers and sisters, get involved in the Body of Christ. Because you wither up and miss what God has for you if you stay in the cage. The Evil One, he wants you to get messed up and he wants to rob the present from you.
Now. Let’s hear some good words.
We serve a God of a second chance, a God who wants to remold you, remake you, renew you. Four ways, you see them on your outline, on how you can win at solitaire.
1. Be patient while you grieve. Experts say divorce and death are similar. And it takes, two years for our emotions to stabilize after both a death and a divorce. I don’t care where you are from, how spiritual you are, if you meet someone you have got to wait at least a year, in my opinion, before you consider remarriage. But make sure you are patient while you grieve, that you get healthy and whole, that you get that personal relationship with Jesus Christ right and that you have peace outside of marriage.
2. Maintain an attitude of contentment. Not buying into that marital myth that if I get married, then that is the secret to life. The most miserable people I know are not single people who wish they were married, it is married people who wish they were single. The Apostle Paul, was content. Jesus filled that void and the Apostle Paul was single and the most important person to ever walk on this earth was single. And God might have called you, once you are divorced, to be single for the rest of your days or He can lead you into another relationship.
The Apostle Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” He said, “I have learned to be content in all situations. And Jesus, you see, can identify with you. Yes, you are playing solitaire, He can identify with you because He was tempted sexually and never sinned. He can identify with you. Won’t you share your feelings, your anger, your thoughts with Him?
3. Make sure that you remain sexually pure. Some have told me, well if I am thirty-five, forty there is no way I can hold back my passion until marriage, that is impossible for me. That is not true. That line of thought is false. And too many, even here, you are holding onto a shaky relationship because you would rather live your life with someone in sin, sexually, than live it alone.
How can you expect God to ever bless your future if you are committing a sin, living sin before Him? It is difficult. It is one of the biggest struggles I believe singles face in this society – remaining sexually pure. But God will honor it. What a great gift to be able to give your spouse when you get married. It is not to be abused.
4. And finally, you are playing solitaire? Get a grasp on God’s grace, His amazing grace. So deep, so rich, so true. God wants to forgive, He wants to cleanse, He wants to change you. But won’t you confess old life and turn from it?
You are divorced. I’ve got great news for you, solitaire players. Jesus said, “I will wipe you clean with My blood. I will give you hope and a future.”
So the choice is yours. You either lose. You go the opposite way of Jesus Christ. Or you win and allow Him to cleanse and wipe you clean so you can be a life changer in this generation.