Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Doors (04/05/04)
TITLE: Closed Doors to a Hurting Heart
By Ann Marie Lindenmeyer
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She looked back over her seven-year marriage and saw clear telltale signs of an emotionally abusive relationship. Hadn't she learned the first time, she thought with regret? She had continued to try over the years not wanting to be a failure, not wanting to give up, and not wanting to do the awful ‘D' word, divorce. She had allowed threats from him to distort her thinking. She had always thought that staying together was the best thing to do for the kids. Divorce would be the easy way out.
Tears fell from her eyes as she drove along, barely noticing her surroundings. Now she was hurting so deeply. The doors had closed on her hurting heart and the love she once had for her husband had all but disappeared. He promised that this time would be different, but she had heard those promises before. She was becoming someone she despised through her actions of apathy, rage, and dishonesty. Even though her faith had been growing stronger and she was opening her heart to Jesus more and more, she felt like she was out of control.
How could she have any self-respect if she stayed in the situation, she thought as the trees and homes raced by? She finally had come to a point in her life where she accepted herself as God had created her, His precious child. She had never felt this amount of self-worth in her life. She had always let the opinions and control of men in her life distort her view of herself. Now the only one that mattered was her Father, the almighty creator of Heaven and Earth.
Could He love her if she walked away from her marriage, she often pondered? She had become a slave of her husband's control. She wanted to live for God and give her life to Him wholeheartedly, but she was always so distraught and indecisive when around her husband. Would He forgive her if she couldn't go back, the question tore deeply in her heart?
She knew God was a loving and forgiving God, but she was torn on what would be the right thing to do. She had continued to pray to find an answer, but was met with silence, or maybe her heart wasn't open enough to hear the answer. The doors to her heart were closed and probably would be for some time.
She arrived at her destination, surprisingly it hadn't seemed to take very long to get there. She wiped the tears from her eyes and still felt confused, but she knew God was there even if she couldn't hear Him right now. She did the best she could to pull herself together before entering the office where her Christian therapist would be waiting for her. Confusion overwhelmed her, but she knew she had to do everything she could to try to salvage her marriage before giving up. God hadn't created this covenant of marriage so people could easily throw it away. She wanted to throw it away, but until she clearly heard from Him what to do, she would continue to pray for an answer.
She said a quick prayer, took a deep sigh, and entered the building. She remembered as she entered that she was not the one in control and this was not her life, it was His. She would continue the best she could with the given situation, and wait. He had something in store for her life and patience and prayer would eventually lead her onto His path.
She sat in the waiting room chair and quietly praised Him. Then one of her favorite Bible verses entered her thoughts, "Rejoice in the Lord always, I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:4-7) She sat there feeling comforted knowing that even though the door to her heart was closed from her husband, Jesus Christ was inside the door showering her heart with all his unfailing love.
Copyright 2004, Ann Marie "Ree" Brown.