from the archives
I recently heard the story of a husband and wife who were separated from one another. They have a 4 year old daughter as well. They had been attending marriage counseling with their pastor.
After a number of counseling sessions, the pastor had come to a conclusion which he shared with the couple…
He advised the couple that perhaps their differences really were irreconcilable. Perhaps, he said, they should just split up. Some marriages can’t be salvaged. It would be better for the child if her parents were at least friends who got along than were married and disagreeing.
As I heard this story, anger washed over me.
How dare he? How dare a pastor tell a couple that their marriage isn’t fixable! How dare he strip their hope and future away from them with his careless and merciless words.
While it would be easy to stay angry at the pastor, he is not entirely to blame. The church as a whole is responsible. Many of us believe, including this pastor, that God is somehow not in the miracle business anymore. We have heard it taught and we convince ourselves that God has more important things to do than tend to Jack and Jane’s marriage.
There’s a massive earthquake, a couple of wars, and an economic crisis. God is busy. One or two marriages will inevitably slip through the cracks.
Or perhaps you think more like me. I tend to convince myself that God can fix, can heal, can provide, and can save everything and everyone but me. I have self- worth issues. My faith abounds for others and drops dead for myself.
The pastor however, who told that man and wife to give up, and all the pastors before him, and all those that will come after him have forgotten one important thing: We serve an all-powerful God.
Our God is the God of the Resurrection. He raised people from the dead and then He Himself was risen. He is the Resurrection…but we don’t think He can resurrect a marriage?
And it’s not just our marriages. It is our relationships, our emotions, our past, our wounds, our finances, our careers, our children, ourselves. We tell ourselves that somehow He couldn’t possibly care about the details of our lives. So we don’t ask Him. We don’t invite Him. We suffer and sink alone when, in fact, He can restore them all.
The question isn’t: “What can God resurrect,” but rather “What can’t He?” The answer: nothing.
Now the practice for me comes in not just proclaiming that I believe these things for others but rather also believing them for myself. God is faithful to remind me that He is a good Father who gives good gifts to His children. He cares. Heck, He not only loves me, He likes me.
And last I checked, His promises were still available to me…
Do you believe in the power of the Resurrection to save and restore? Have you seen it work? Are you ever guilty of forgetting His power as well? Where do you need God to breathe new life?
post photo by Bill Emory