After experiencing the trauma of a divorce, it is good to eventually get to the point of acknowledging that “what is, IS.” Mustering the will to move on, both spiritually and practically, however fumblingly, is the road back to composure, and a gift to your children, who are bearing their own grief without bearing yours as well.
So, how do we cross that final Rubicon of trying to forgive when we don’t feel it is justified? First, we acknowledge that what someone did to us and/or to someone we love, was destructive. The damage is irreversible (right up there with the fall of man); that’s a given. Fortunately, God has said that He will carry this burden for us. The Day of the Lord is coming AND with it, also the day of His vengeance (Jeremiah 46:10). The two will come together.
The scriptures tell us that “the way of the transgressor is hard”—and that is true both HERE and eventually. It is hard here because the transgressor will now suffer increased relational complications. And the offender will now have to cope with guilt—with God walking the secret staircase of their soul, penetrating their spirit, a spirit that may well haunt them during sleepless portions of their nights for the rest of their life, unless they turn and truly repent.
The Puritan saint Matthew Henry said, after he had been robbed, “I can be grateful that it was I who was robbed rather than I who robbed!” Now, THAT’s perspective!
In overcoming forgiveness obstacles, squaring oneself with the immaturity of the offending/ irresponsible spouse is immeasurably helpful. If the renegade spouse were handicapped in a wheelchair you’d see him/her crimped PHYSICAL condition. So now, picture him/her in that same condition mentally. He (or she) has been and IS equally handicapped in his/her spiritual state. He/she HAD to be, to have made such poor choices. Someday his/her remorse will be inconsolable (outside of Yeshua), when HE exposes him/her to himself/herself.
It is important to realize that there are different levels of spirituality in different people, and this has been true (a constant) through the centuries. There are such spiritual giants as the Apostle Paul, and the brothers John and Charles Wesley, and Matthew Henry, and Andrew Murray and George Mueller, and then on the other end of the continuum there are ordinary multitudes who live life for self-advantage and expediency and haven’t a thought cast in godly directions. What is, IS. People fall all along that spiritual maturity continuum.
So, squaring oneself with those who are spiritually lesser developed helps release our own angst. We can forgive them “for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). We can observe them, call a spade a spade in our own mind, and then realize that they did what they did because that is where they were in the line-up. It was no surprise to God. He Himself constantly lives in “what is, IS”, and adjusts His personal counseling and actions accordingly.
Much of life is a “respond-a-thon”—bringing His nature into the situation, whatever that requires. In the end, personally, the story is about US—what depths of further spirituality can we achieve, given what we’re given. God Himself has done such gymnastics within Himself. He is our forerunner and our enabler through all such vicissitudes and cross-patches. Go forward with your forgiveness and you’ll find yourself freed up.
~~For more on this topic, including working through the process of forgiveness, see our eBook on How to Relate with Love to a Controlling Person.