Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Love Him like I Love You

It was January 24, 2008. It was a cold Sunday afternoon. I remember where we were. I remember what I was wearing. I remember the look on his face. I remember walking out of the house and seeing the looks on my girls' faces. Would this be the last time they would see their Mommy and Daddy together?? It was the day I thought our marriage was over. It was the most gutwrenchingly worst day of my life. And yet, however, it was also the most lifechanging.

I remember driving around on the snow covered country roads, crying out to God and asking "What do I do? I don't know what to do now!" And as clearly as if He was sitting right there in the empty passenger's seat next to me, I heard God say, "Love him like I love you." But how can I do that?? There's been so much hurt. So much said and so much done. How do I do that?? What does that look like? Love, forgive, show mercy, give grace....that's how God loves us. He sees us at our worst and loves us still. That's what I had to do.

It wasn't easy in the beginning. In fact, it was one of the hardest things I've ever done. It's hard to break old negative habits. It's hard to forgive deep emotional hurts. It's hard to work on your marriage when even some of your closest family and friends are telling you that it's over. And yet, day by day, we loved each other more and more like how God loves us. And day by day, it got easier and easier. We've done more talking in the past year than we've done in the almost 18 years we've been together. We are open and honest about everything we're feeling, what we're thinking, what our plans are, what are hopes are, what we love about each other and what we don't like so much. I'm not going to lie and say that everything is perfect now. It's not. We've learned that to have a great marriage, which is what we want, it takes a lot of work. It takes love, mercy, forgiveness, grace, respect, humility, compassion, humor and passion for each other.

We have gone through a lot these past few years. God has transformed our marriage from the worst to the best it has ever been. I love my husband more today than I ever have. I see him now for who he really is. He is a loving father. He is a giving son. He is a caring grandson. He is a talented musician. He is a genius mechanic. He is a terrific friend. He is smart. He is funny. He is giving. He is compassionate to those in need. He is goofy. He is humble. He is the man that I have been with now for nearly 18 years, and the man I want to be with until I am old and gray.

Today we can say without a shadow of a doubt that God has saved us from divorce. He has transformed us and transformed our marriage and our family. We love being together now. We love to spend time together as a family now. We miss each other when we are apart. I can truly say that our marriage would not be as strong as it is today if we had not gone through this really hard time in our marriage.  What Satan intended for evil, God has used for our good.  We knew that as we were walking through this dark time in our lives that God would use us to save other marriages and to change people's lives. Our hope is that we can share our story so that other people's marriages can be saved. Since that time, we have had several opportunities to talk with other couples who are going through the same thing we did.  Our message is one of hope.  It is NEVER too late.  God can and will REDEEM your marriage, if you ask Him to.  Nothing is impossible to God!! He is mighty to save!!!

by Lisa Powell

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