"My wife torments me everyday because I had an affair. I wish that I hadn’t cheated on her, it was wrong and I feel so much grief and shame over it. I just wish she would quit rubbing my nose in it. I know that she hates me, otherwise, why else would she continue to torment me with my past? I can’t live like this anymore."
Why do you think this woman is not forgiving her husband? She thinks she is benefiting from using her negative feelings against her husband. She is allowing the hurt she feels to control her thoughts about her husband to such a degree that she is using this power over her husband to make herself feel better.
And its true! She might feel better for about five minutes until her unforgiving heart needs fed again. She will envision her husband in bed with another woman and then abuse her husband with it every chance she gets. This is how she deals with the pain.
Those of us who have dealt with the issue of adultery can relate to this woman’s wounded heart but what about her husband? What happens to him? What is he supposed to do for the pain he is feeling?
Not everyone can forgive properly but without true forgiveness, the marriage will be threatened by lack of trust, which only a spiritual perceptiveness can repair. With that said, this woman can either continue wallowing in her pain or come out from her selfish feelings she is now living in and decide to forgive her husband.
So lets look at this issue a bit closer. The wife is hurting “big time” over her husband’s stupid and sinful mistake but he is remorseful and asking for forgiveness. Therefore, this woman needs to stop living for herself, come out of her selfishness and start taking care of her marriage before there is no marriage left to take care of! Wouldn’t you agree?
What can she do that would help her to forgive her husband of adultery?
1. She needs to realize that it doesn’t CHANGE anything by NOT forgiving. The time and energy wasted on an unforgiving heart is utterly useless. She cannot turn back the clocks here and pretend it didn’t happen. She needs to let the pain finally go by forgiving.
Granted, you can never forget the past, but that doesn’t mean you cannot learn to forgive completely either, which is essentially not abusing your spouse with it every darn chance you get.
In marriages that aren’t so great to begin with, adultery is used as a weapon to manipulate and control the adulterer with. It is a strong weapon, wielded at the most opportune times to feel better about self, to get what you want, to seem like the good guy, and sometimes to destroy the marriage through divorce. But none of this is necessary. I know this because I have been there and done that. I have been on both sides of this issue. Both sides are filled with heartache and despair but it can be rectified through the proper foundations.
We are all human beings and make mistakes but God knows in our heart if we are remorseful of our mistakes He will give us a chance to ask for His forgiveness. Of course we need time to reflect, and to lament, and to even dwell on the hurt we are feeling but we cannot go on living on that foundation or the marriage will fall.
We have to be willing to make amends and to give our spouse the same forgiveness that God has forgiven us!
Jesus says we are to forgive the adulterer IF they have stopped in their weakness and have repented. We have all sinned. Is this woman better than her husband because she wasn’t the one caught in the act of adultery? I don’t think so.
We are all sinners! Maybe we don’t cheat on our spouse, maybe we only abuse our spouse with our angry and hateful words. In my book, the woman who constantly abuses and berates her husband over his past is sinning! She is hurting the marriage tremendously! She is no better than her husband.
God doesn’t have different levels for different sins. A sin is a sin no matter what that sin is. That is why Jesus said to the crowd, “Those WITHOUT SIN cast the first stone.” No one could cast a stone at the adulterous woman because they have all sinned! Jesus knew the woman was truly remorseful for what she had done, and that is why he said, “Go and sin no more.”
Jesus didn’t say, “Those who have not committed adultery cast the first stone.” Jesus was telling us how we’re all sinners and a sin is a sin in the eyes of God.
“Woman where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
“No one sir, “ she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go and leave your life of sin.”
2. She needs to come out of her selfishness and forgive her husband with completeness of her heart and stop dwelling on what was and start fixing what is!
True forgiveness means a change of heart. If we say that we have forgiven but in our heart we are still bitter and angry then we have not “really” forgiven but “really” lied to our self.
The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks. Luke 6:45
True forgiveness only comes from having Faith in Jesus Christ. Why is that? Because it is through Christ that WE HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN. Take Jesus Christ out of the equation, God forbid, and forgiveness of our sins would be no more!
With God’s help we can accept Christ’s forgiveness and stop in our wrongdoing.
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:21
The simple exchange works like this, our sins were given over to Jesus Christ at His crucifixion and His righteousness is given to us when we believe. Without belief or acceptance in the source of true forgiveness we will be unable to forgive others when they sin against us.
What can the husband do when his wife won’t forgive him?
I had one husband write in and tell me the pain and suffering he was feeling and it tore me up. Here is what he said.
“After cheating on a spouse, you feel so helpless and worthless. You would do anything to go back and change what happened and there's nothing you can do. When a spouse does not forgive and torments you continuously about your mistake, it wears at your innermost being. The sorrow and grief and shame are unbearable. I could not think of a better gift and proof of true love and character than forgiving someone that has hurt you. Especially someone who has hurt you deeply. I hope to experience this gift one day and be able to have a full heart once again.”
Part 2 of this article will focus on what the husband can do when a wife won't forgive.
Stay tuned! (Part 2) of “My Wife Won’t Forgive Me!”
Angie Lewis offers spiritual enlightenment tips for couples in marriage, and is the author of new release book JOURNEY ON THE ROADS LESS TRAVELED.
This unique book is about love, life, marriage, addiction, temptation, and understanding the power of spiritual awareness for your marriage.
In her book, Angie reveals her own journey of overcoming addiction and battling with her negative emotions that she allowed to embrace her life and marriage.
To find out more about this new book click here, http://www.spiritual.journeybooks.4t.com/
ISBN 1413788904 Available Amazon online!
Angie Lewis counsels couples and writes a monthly newsletter where she reveals her secrets on how YOU can stay happily married for life!
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