Jun 26, 2013

Clinging to the Truth

We all have moments that bring us to our knees, force us to cry out and make us wonder, How will I survive this? I experienced this debilitating feeling when my first husband left our family four years ago. He developed a severe drug addiction early in our marriage and could never break the habit. I tried everything I could to help him change but I found out the hard way that HE had to want a different life.

He disappeared for eight weeks when our children were 4, 20 months, and 13 weeks old. After the first week of him being gone I went outside and sat in the middle of the driveway weeping uncontrollably. My world was unraveling so quickly and I had three children who did not deserve this. I had discovered his addiction was back in full force and he had done things I could never have imagined. How could I be married to someone like this? What am I going to do? How can I raise these children?

Those were just a few of the thoughts that raced through my mind as tears poured down my cheeks. I prayed to God begging Him to take the pain away, to make right this terrible situation.

No easy answer came.

After a four weeks of silence from my ex-husband I began taking down all of our wedding photos in my mother's house. The kids and I were staying with her and our situation seemed to be long-term. Before Jeremy left I had told him I wanted to separate. I knew he was using again and I was not going to keep living as if everything was fine.

I was the fixer in my first marriage. I micromanaged Jeremy's every move, our finances, our children, even myself. It was exhausting and I had had enough. He asked if he could keep Gabe (our oldest) and I vehemently said NO! How could he only want one of our children?? This behavior made no sense to me and it still doesn't.

I had a dream one night before Jeremy resurfaced. I was watching my children and myself inside a box. There were four walls around us and people were yelling from the outside, banging their fists to get inside. The kids were panicked but I remained calm knowing no one could get to us. The voices on the other side of those walls were strong and the banging was deafening but I knew we would not be touched.

A few days later I shared my dream with a friend and she gave me the following verse on a business card: "The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and He delivers them" Psalm 34:7.

I was not familiar with many verses in the Bible and had never read this one. I stuck it to the cork board beside my bed and read it every night. I held onto those words and repeated them over and over when my world began to get too dark. I wish I could say I gave God total control over my situation but I didn't. I was praying for God to save me but not listening to Him. My fight was long and draining.

Another verse that helped me through this time was Jeremiah 29:11-  "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Some days I did not want to believe in a God that could let these things happen to me. Hope seemed distant at times. But I couldn't give up on my children, they deserved so much more. 

My life is completely different now and I am grateful God never turned His back on me. Psalm 34:7 is still one of my favorite verses and God continues to use it in my life through a multitude of ways. I don't look back with sadness but with appreciation of the people who helped me and for a God who truly loves me.

And in case your wondering, my ex-husband never recovered from his addiction. He hasn't seen his children in over three years and is now facing a possible 8-year jail sentence for theft.

I am at peace with his choices and rest in God's amazing promise "to do far more abundantly for me than [I] can ever think or imagine" Ephesians 3:20.

Today I'm linking up with Elisa over at More to Be . Join us for some uplifting stories of God's redemption.


  1. Oh Sarah, I am so glad you linked up today! Your story is an authentic account of God's faithfulness, and evidence of how He used the Word to transform your thinking. Your testimony may be exactly what God uses to transform someone else's, too!

    1. Thank you Elisa! It's scary to share so much and be vulnerable but I want to help others who are hurting. Thank you for all you do!