My now ex-husband made our divorce as vicious, bitter, and acrimonious as he had always promised to make it. He had threatened that if we ever divorced, I would be lucky to see my daughters every other weekend because according to him, he was the better parent and thus would be their caregiver. Oh, and he would also get the house, so I had better find a new place to live. My ex-husband was verbally and emotionally abusive to me for many years, and even when he became physically abusive in the last year of our marriage, I was still holding out hope that he would finally get the help that he needed. But there came a night when I was, for the first time, truly afraid for my life and the lives of my sleeping daughters—I had that gut instinct that things could go horribly wrong that night. I locked myself in my bedroom, called for help, and got a civil protection order the next day. I was terrified in the courtroom with the magistrate, even though it was just the two of us. I had never been in a courtroom before. I recounted through tears what had lead up to this court appearance. I felt like a failure, like I had done something wrong in our marriage. Like I had failed somehow.
I never knew what new schemes and lies my ex-husband would come up with during the divorce proceedings. My attorney said that he had never seen someone like him in his 30-year career. But, something else happened during these months—for the first time, I discovered strengths that I never knew I had, and I discovered that God had already put a group of wonderful people in my life who helped me through this incredibly tough time. (My family was also very supportive, but they all live in Germany.)
1 Peter 5:10
In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.
Just like Peter told the early Christians, God will lift you up again after your suffering. What is lost will be returned and restored to you in eternity. So do not despair! Looking back a few years later, I can see that God had a plan for me for a better life. He helped me through the divorce by putting good people at every step of the way to guide me and support me. I got the civil protection order, the magistrate (in the end) saw through my husband’s schemes and lies, I am my daughters’ legal guardian, and I got to keep the house. And after some bizarre, and in retrospect, even sometimes hilarious online dating experiences, I did finally meet a wonderful man with a good heart. What kept me going every day during those difficult times was the thought that my today was not my forever, and I feel blessed to see now what God had in store for me all along.
When was the last time that you went through a difficult time? Are you going through a difficult time now? Are you asking God for guidance as to what you should do to navigate through this? Are there good people in your life, who love you and whom God placed there for you? Are you reminding yourself that your today is not your forever, that there will be an end to your suffering?
Look at the people in your life to see whether anyone is suffering and think about how you could help them through their difficult time. If you are suffering, look for people that God has placed in your life to help you make it through. Write down things you can look forward to again once your suffering has passed.
Today, we complete 1 Peter by going through 1 Peter 5. Feel free to simply read through the chapter. Or, you can listen to it through the StreetLights Bible. Download the app or visit streetlightsbible.com.
Dear Father in heaven, thank you for having a plan for my life. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to grow and find new strengths by helping me face difficult times and guiding me through them. Thank you so much for placing wonderful people in my life and for walking beside me at all times. Amen.
This post was written by Cordula Mora. Cordula is a neuroscientist who currently works in the Provost office at Bowling Green State University. She was born and raised in Germany, then spent many years living in New Zealand before settling in the US almost 16 years ago. She was raised in a German Lutheran church but feels blessed to have been spiritually awakened when she was introduced to CedarCreek Church. She thanks God every day for all the blessings in her life, including two amazing daughters and a wonderful man who loves the Lord.
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