Someone once asked Johnny Carson, the late great comedian and Tonight Show host, why divorce was so expensive. His answer was, “Because it’s worth it.”
Divorce can be a welcomed release and relief . . . or a heartbreaking tragedy, or both.
It can be at the same time the ending of a fairy tale dream and/or a launch into a new beginning.
Divorce can mark the loss of love, home, and family or the end of abuse, neglect, fear, and anger.
But – is it a sin?
Considering all of the difficulties associated with divorce, everything leading up to the ending, and the different life that follows in its wake, only the devoutly religious are concerned with this spiritual question.
Religious devotees (of whatever faith or spiritual practice) believe that their moral values will insulate them from many of the trials and tribulations of the secular world. They hold on to their beliefs as if they were an anchor in stormy weather. They believe that “the family that prays together, stays together.” Sometimes the anchor holds, sometimes it does not.
Though touted incorrectly by many recent pundits, Christian divorce rates are at 42%, while the rate among couples in the non-religious world are around 50%. That lower rate for Christians, however, is provided that the couple is actively involved in their faith community (Church) and attends services and activities regularly.
Divorce rates for Christians who cohabitated (lived together) before their marriage is the same as the average rates of non-Christians.
This book is for Christians who have experienced divorce.
It is not the author’s purpose to recommend or encourage divorce. Jesus himself taught that God permitted divorce only because of the hardness of our hearts (Matthew 19:8).
But, yes – God permitted divorce.
Divorce can be a great enough difficulty to deal with on its own, without having to worry if God is also antagonistic toward us or has rejected us because of any unexpected, unplanned turn that our life might take. God has never desired to compile our woes; He has always wanted to deliver us from them.
I have performed many wedding ceremonies over my 40 year life in Christian ministry. I do not believe that any Bride or Groom has ever stood before me on their wedding day with the thought of possible future divorce looming in their minds. I believe that divorce was not even a part of their imagination of possibilities.
And yet, I know that many of the couples that I have joined in Holy Matrimony over the years are no longer couples. They have become unjoined by divorce.
What I want to tell you in this book is that God is in favor of new beginnings, even if they come through endings. He is the God of second chances and more. He is the God of compassion, understanding, and redemption.
He wants to help you, and me, to overcome all of the failures, mistakes, and regrets that we as humans all seem to pile so high.
He wants to pick us up, along with all of the pieces of our lives, and carry us forward into something new and almost always something better.
God is not against you. He is for you. He loves you.