Fighting to Save a Marriage

by | Feb 26, 2024

A friend of mine recently learned that his wife is having an affair and is planning to file for divorce.

After Mark got over the initial shock, he sought my advice and prayers on how to respond to Lisa (not their real names). He is now fighting for his marriage with astonishing wisdom and strength. But his weapons are not of the world; they are entirely spiritual.

I have never seen anyone wield prayer, love, humility, patience and forgiveness with such grace and perseverance. We talk and pray and wrestle through issues and strategies regularly as he seeks to honor God and leave no stone unturned in his effort save his marriage.

Among other things, Mark is praying Matthew 7:3-5 daily, asking God to help him to see the ways he contributed to the breakdown of his marriage. He realizes that none of his failures justify what Lisa is doing. Even so, he is praying daily for God to open his eyes to ways that he needs to change so he can grow into the man and the husband God designed him to be.

We are also praying Psalm 32:1-5 and Hosea 2:6-7 together, asking God to make Lisa miserable in her sin and to place a hedge of thorns between her and the other man.

God seems to be answering these prayers. Mark has never seen Lisa look so weary and sad. Even her children notice it. We pray that her misery will turn her back to Christ and lead her onto the path of repentance, confession and forgiveness, which Mark is eager to offer since he is increasingly aware of how much God has forgiven him.

We are also praying that Mark will know when to be silent and when and how to speak words of loving warning to his wife. He is also asking God to show him when to let Lisa experience the natural consequences of her decisions and when to live out Romans 12:17-21 and the book of Hosea by discerning appropriate ways to bless and serve her despite her unfaithfulness. It’s a delicate balance, but by God’s grace he is engaging Lisa with astonishing self-control, wisdom and grace.

Mark knows that the outcome of this battle belongs to the Lord, but he is determined to do everything God leads him to do as he seeks save Lisa from her disastrous choices. I am hopeful that she will eventually change course, but even if that does not occur, I thank God that Mark will have a clear conscience knowing that he was obedient to the Lord throughout this ordeal. He is also setting an example his children will remember for the rest of their lives.

Why do I share this with you? First, because I would deeply appreciate it if you would take a few minutes right now to join me in praying for Mark and Lisa. By God’s grace, over half the divorce cases I’ve served in ended in reconciliation. Please pray with me that this will be one of them.

The other reason I’m sharing this story with you is because I know that in the days ahead, someone in your life might look to you for the same kind of advice and support I’ve been offering to Mark. I also know that many Christians freeze at times like this because they’ve never learned how to help others respond to such challenges in biblically faithful ways.

If there is room for you to grow in this kind of wisdom, and if you would like to deepen your ability to be an effective guide to your friends, family members and coworkers when they face overwhelming conflicts, I invite you to join us at our upcoming Sowing Peace Conference in Georgia on April 18-20.

We have a lineup of outstanding speakers who are preparing to deliver a wide spectrum of training that can equip you to serve as wise guides and coaches for people who are navigating the kinds of challenges that Mark and Lisa are facing.

We will also have an entire track devoted to providing your church with the training and resources you need to establish in-house Peace Sower Team that is available to provide training, coaching and conciliation to members who are facing serious conflict.

I hope to see you and a team from your church in Georgia, because could very well be a Mark and a Lisa in your life or your church who will soon need your help.

Warmly in Christ,

Ken Sande

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© 2024 Ken Sande

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