Chocolate Tears

Thou has given me sweet droplets of love.

Thou has given me sweet droplets of love.

I am drowning in tears.  Strengthen me as you promised.  Psalms 119:28

My last view of him was a vivid flash of purple as he closed the door behind him on his way out.  The purple being my anger and resentment toward his casual retort regarding my request.   Why did he have to be so hard-headed when it came to these matters?

I admit, I do tend to look at things with poignant scrutiny causing him to quickly access a situation as thespian in nature.  I have been somewhat of a drama queen in the past, but I have changed.  Truly.  There was a time when I manipulated my requests using schemes akin to the serpent’s cunning insidious methods of persuasion with Eve.  But, I HAVE changed.

Now the question is: am I wrong to make such a request of him?  What does he see that I do not?  I exam my motives and intentions over and over seeking the answer.  I sense a fever besetting me, bringing an overwhelming feeling of misery and dejection.  My hunger for his love is waning and my heart is suppressing my true desires for his affection.  I cry out for wisdom: where was the blame, God?

I wander the rooms aimlessly without intention or purpose.  Long gone is the undertaking of setting the house in order.  I glance out the window to see the sun climb from its morning abode casting dazzling rays of gold across my winter garden.  Bright specks create shimmering diamonds causing my heart to ascend and I clearly grasp my beloved’s resolution.

Why was I so quick and harsh with my words?  Was it so important I get my way, even at the cost of his devotion?  I silenced him using plausible argument, so it seemed.  As I reminisce the morning’s scene, I wince at my use of feminine designs to persuade and plot my desires.  He was no fool.

How can I rectify this quandary?  Can I right what was cast down and renew his faith in me?  I don’t deserve his devoted affection.  Yet, I know him to listen with an open heart.  He always forgives and sweeps me away with his admiration for my uniqueness, those traits he finds so endearing.  My faux pas has broken our trust.

As I wait for the evening to fall, I prepare for my lover’s return.  I dress simply, yet with the beauty of a queen draped upon my soul, as I plan to express my admission of guilt.  I cannot afford to let the sun go down upon this transgression of shame.

The door opens, he steps through bringing the last ray of sunshine with him.  As I look upon his silhouette, I run into his arms and quickly speak my apology.  He pulls back, gazing into my eyes.  He embraces me once again and ends with a passionate kiss of forgiveness.  I return his affection with fervor and delight.

Turning to lead him to our secret chamber, he gently tugs at my arm and swirls me around so that I see a small recompense for the morning’s dispute: a red velvet box of chocolates.  I tumble to the ground weeping because I do not deserve this reprieve.  This acquittal leaves me crying chocolate tears, sweet pieces of love in response.

Finding Peace after my Divorce

Divorce is painful.  Nothing about it will quickly fade away. It is something that has to be worked through. 

Forgiveness  is one of the most powerful experiences a man or woman will undergo after a painful divorce.  If the act of forgiveness is not applied, then the danger of the bitterness and the destruction of the divorce will remain. 

The choice is given to us clearly through the Word of God concerning forgiveness, and the benefits from chosing forgiveness is for our healing.  I read these statements and I learned to apply them in my divorce to my ex-husband, and the benefits affected other areas of my life:   “Forgiveness does involve a literal forgetting.  Forgiving  involves remembering graciously.  Remembering that harboring forgiveness comes at an emotional and a physiological cost.  Cultivating forgiveness may cut these costs.”  (source unknown)

Forgiveness brings much to our life.

It frees us from the emotional weight of the pain.  It doesn’t take the pain away,  but it releases the hold those emotions continue to have in our heart.  Holding on to bitterness too tightly causes a range of negative emotions, and even causes physical stress to a person.

Forgiveness gives an earthly picture of grace.  Most of the time there is no earthly or rational reason to forgive.  Forgiveness gives something that is mostly underserved.  What an awesome picture of God’s grace!

It helps you sleep better at night.  The emotional weight of an injury is often heavier than the actual injury and takes longer to heal.  When we forgive one another, it feels as though pressure is released from one’s shoulders.  Forgiving people takes less stress and makes more joy, regardless of the pain in our life. 

The subject of offering forgiveness causes some people to cringe.  It feels like a risk too big to take.  When you forgive, it feels like you are inviting further injury.  Forgiveness can be abused. 

I wonder if Christ ever feels likewise?

I write this insight realizing I will  never be able to state that I  have arrived.  It will always be a continual surrender to Christ’s will, his love, and his direction.  But the knowledge that freedom, forgiveness and restoration brings has its own satisfaction:  a desire in my heart to never stop the journey. 

What does it mean?  It means giving up my hate towards that person for all the wrongs they inflicted on me and the children.  Choosing to forgive is never an act of the will, because we know that if the choice were ours it would never happen.  I realize it becomes an act of the will once we have surrendered it to God, and as we allow the healing process to begin.  Only then do we begin to understand the AWESOME HEALING POWER of God.  Once we have allowed God to truly cleanse us, we experience an actual act of the will.  “Why?” you ask.  Because our will becomes his will for our lives.  We become tubular.  (This will be explained next blog).

Divorce is a bitter action between two people who vowed until death do us part.  But though it is tragic and devastating, our journey goes on.  The path becomes single again and sometimes very lonely because of our unanswered questions and our hurt.   The only hope we have to continue successfully is through our forgiving the offender.

Life does go on, but it is up to you as to how you want to demonstrate to your children that forgiveness is one of the keys to a life of happiness in Christ —  no matter what life may present. 

I chose to forgive.  My life with my ex-husband is being able to see him and to see a “dear friend.”  I could have chosen to continue to resent and hate him.  But my satisfaction came one day when I heard my 33-year-old daughter telling her close friends that, “I am able to forgive because what I saw in my mother when she divorced my father.”  She continued to state that, “They are good friends.  They can sit and have a cup of coffee and a good conversation together.”  It was very hard but ONLY through Christ can this be possible. 

 But, oh the joy that comes when you are fully aware that you have arrived at a place of green pastures where there used to be only hate and vengeance.  It takes commitment and obedience to yourself  that you are going to make it.  Vowing that you are going to create an attitude that states, “I am beyond what I feel inside me and what I remember in the past, and I set my heart to heal.”  Even when everything inside you is saying, “my life was destroyed by this divorce.”   You need to take that all to God and let him lead you, sometimes blindly, through your deliverance of the divorce; but the wonderful outcome will be FREEDOM IN CHRIST!!!

Blessings,

Erme

Who’s keeping track?

Recently my husband was suited with a heart monitor to track activity and stress levels.  He was instructed to write down hourly activities such as running, nap, and watered plants, in a journal. I guess this was to detect any signs of stressful interactions in his lifestyle. I teased him occasionally about his journal entries. “What are you writing now? Is it about me?” 

I was dusting in his den the next day when I came across his journal.  I had to look! Come on, you wouldn’t want to know what was on it? Of course the entries were simple (I should have known, we live a simple, bordering on mundane, life):

  1. 10:00 am Went for walk
  2. 11:30 am  Had lunch
  3. 12:45 pm Nap
  4. 2:30 pm Went to Home Depot
  5. 4:00 pm Worked on Bathroom Shower

Yes, pretty basic.  I thought, this is good cause there’s no “discussion with wife on my eating too much salt”.  Gotta tell ya, he does tend to add salt to everything.  Probably why the doctor is having him wear the monitor.  Although, I don’t think the doctor is going to catch that by his entry.  I can see the doctor’s note, “this guy, by the results recorded,  gets excited about this lunch”!

In the following days, he would occasionally tease me back by saying, “I’m writing that down in my journal!”  I would respond, “What?  That was nothing.  Are you keeping track of my wrongs?”  I had no idea if the entry would reflect a difference in heart activity, but just the same it was a nagging thought.  What if the results showed that I was the cause of harmful heart palpitations in my hubby?  I imagined myself being called into the doctor’s office to discuss my husband’s condition.   How mortifying! 

All kidding aside, do you ever feel like, no matter what you do, some people will just not let you forget your wrong doing?  It’s like they keep a tally or record somewhere that has your name on it in bold letters.  From time to time, they bring it out to remind you of your error.  Remember when you said  this?  You thought it was in the past, gone, erased and forgiven.  It’s frustrating to say the least. 

“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude.  It does not demand its own way.  It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged”. 1 Cor. 13: 4-5  They key words are it (love)  keeps no record of being wronged.  Now, I don’t expect everyone to remember that “in love” they are to keep no record of wrongs to me or I to them.  I can remember quite vividly sometimes what wrongs I have suffered, and the injustice of them all.  And, they did not come at the hand of someone who loved me (Ouch, that hurts to admit. How can anyone not like me?).  The thing is, maybe I did wrong someone, and if I have apologized or repented in my own way (and prayed for forgiveness from the Lord) shouldn’t they forgive and forget? 

I am glad God has written that verse in His word.  I remember it when I want to bring up a wrong with my hubby or someone else.  Even if they have never asked forgiveness, I must forgive them because true love commands it.  I have asked for forgiveness many, many times for wrong thoughts or actions and each time I know God has forgiven me.  Matthew 6:14 states, “if you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.” (NLT)  It far more valuable to me that my sins be forgiven than to hold onto a record of a wrongs towards me.  I cannot stand to have anything barring me from His presence.  In His presence, I am complete and able to live life above this chaotic world in peace. 

I urge you to forgive others, even if they do not ask you for it.  Harboring wrongs or keeping track of them only eats away at your heart and peace of mind.  There’s so much more to life than to live in the past.  Like my old Virginian pastor used to say, “you can’t drive forward by looking in the rearview mirror”!  Pray about it and leave it with Christ.  He hears you and will help you through the pain until you are walking forward once again.