Monday, July 28, 2008

Open Letter to God

Dear God,

As I am going through the trials of the ending of my marriage, I find it necessary to talk to you. I have told everyone that I am not mad at You. I have an understanding that You see the big picture. You know what is best and I must trust You.

However, I figured it out the other day that I AM angry with You. Sure, I know better, but there are just too many things I can't reconcile.

God, I dedicated my marriage to You. I gave 110% to that cause - all in Your name. I put my wife ahead of myself at every turn. I was never unfaithful. I never laid a hand on her. I don't even recall raising my voice to her. I made her concerns my concerns and my concerns unimportant. I did this for her, for the institution of marriage, and for YOU, God.

I know life has its disappointments and tragedies. I know that You promise that You will never leave nor forsake me through it all. But, why did this have to happen?

I know that my wife has free will and that is a big issue for You. I also know that we are in a fallen world. However, I trusted you. It isn't even MY will that is affected, Lord, it is YOURS. You hate divorce! You speak of forever and death do us part. Well, I did my part! You let some little girl ruin YOUR will and my faithfulness. Why? You are God, for cryin' out loud!

Jonah had free will. You wanted him to go to Ninevah and preach to the people there. Jonah ran in the other direction with his own free will. However, you sent a great fish to fetch him and deliver him to Ninevah. You can't influence one little girl? You can't send down an angel for counsel? Is my wife's will too tough for God? I just can't see it.

Yeah, I know. You know what suffering is all about. You sent your Son to die so people like me can be with you everlasting. He had You; He WAS You. All human and all God. He had the vision. He knew the plan - the necessity of it all and He felt the touch and love of the divine.

Now it is my turn to suffer. I am not You. I don't feel that love and comfort - not in the same magnitude. I can't see the plan. And I can't understand how You can tell me how much You hate divorce but watch me get taken down that path even as I am faithful.

No, God, I don't get it. I don't get it at all. Yet, I will continue to trust You. I will continue to obey the best I can. What choice do I have?

With painful devotion,

Jeff

7 comments:

chosha said...

"I made her concerns my concerns and my concerns unimportant."

That only works if both people are doing it.

I don't know, Jeff. Maybe God didn't send a big fish because he'd like you to experience a happy marriage, with someone who has no desire to cheat on you. Maybe part of his 'seeing of the big picture' includes knowing that the pain you feel now may not compare to your potential for happiness in the future.

Or maybe there is no God. Either way your anger (though appropriate) seems misdirected.

Michelle said...

I agree with Chosha - sacrificing yourself for another is not healthy and, in fact, a bit presumptuous. I thought Jesus was the only self-sacrifice we needed? Why does your wife need your sacrifice too and why would you think God would approve of your behaviour?

If I were to add my own point of view I'd say that no love is ever wasted and no-one I have ever loved was not worth the effort of loving, BUT NO-ONE is worth denying your God-given talents, dreams and life for!

If I was ever hurt by giving love to someone who abused or refused my gift it was not God's Will, but God's regret. Regret that I was hurt and regret that I allowed myself to be hurt, because it works both ways.

I hurt myself a lot of the time by refusing to see the obvious - for thinking I had to keep on trying instead of realising I was just refusing to let go. Mistaking stubborness for perseverance - it's not.

The point of free will is also that you can choose to take any experience and make it either the burden that cripples you or the lesson that enriches you.

Your wife strikes me as being a person who uses life as an excuse not to grow - to cripple herself and those around her.

Michelle said...

Back from the doctor and had to add an extra comment.

Faith is trusting that everything is happening exactly as it is meant to.

Jeff said...

Chosa: I think the "good marriage with someone that had no desire to cheat on me" IS the point that is not bigger than God's abilities in this situation.

Where is my anger misdirected? I have anger for my wife, my self and my God. I think I got it covered.

Michelle (and Chosa): Self-sacrifice in marriage is a central component to marriage (i.e. putting your spouse ahead of yourself). Yes, Jesus did that and His sacrifice is the only one necessary to bridge the gap between man and God. However, he also gave us the example of how man and wife should live. The relationship between Jesus and His people is described as the Bridegroom (Jesus) and the bride (his people or "the church"). To ignore this example is to not dedicate your marriage to God, in my theology.

I agree that it only works when both partners are doing that. However, my faithfulness and love places no timetable on my wife doing her part. Did Jesus place and artificial deadline on his people to comply. No, He did what He did unconditionally and that was the example He set.

With faithfulness and that Godly example, I had faith and hope that my wife would "get it". She didn't and God not sending a big fish to honor that faithfulness has my faith shaking right now.

I know that most of my readers do not share my theology and therefore this explanation will fall mainly on deaf ears. However, it is what it is and I know that there is a an answer to this and it isn't that God is wrong or that He doesn't exist. It is that I, as a puny man, just do not understand all the things of God and I probably shouldn't pretend that I should be able to.

The Real Mother Hen said...

Divorce is death, so it was till death do you part.

Just a different kind of death.

You will walk out of it, like a newborn, with a new spirit.

Believe me Jeff, there is life, a joyful and meaningful life, ahead of you. You can't see it now. You need to go out of this bottom curve, pull yourself up, continue walking with your head up and eyes open, with the grace of an adult not the grief of a child, and then you will see it.

You need the new spirit to see it. Else, you won't see it.

That's the plan of God.

Michelle said...

Mother Hen

That was beautiful!

Michelle said...

Jeff

You are right. Theology belongs to religion - faith belongs to God. I follow the latter.