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Friday, September 9, 2016

Letter To My Sister

Sister,

I am writing this to you because I believe that you are making a mistake.  A big one.  A costly one.

You have been separated from your husband for several months now and even though he has offered to reconcile, you have yet to respond to this proposal.  Clearly, he is interested in continuing the marriage and doesn’t want to go the route of divorce.

I know that doesn’t absolve him of his repeated adulteries.  He has sinned against God and against you.  I don’t pretend to know all the details of what happened.  I only know of what he has said to me and what he has done, mostly through what other people have said.

To me, though, this doesn’t matter.  I know it might be hard to accept, but I believe that marriage is sacred, especially when you do so at the altar before God.  You see, when you made an oath in front of the attendees, you also made an oath before God.  And from what I understand, He doesn’t take breaking such oaths lightly.

Yes, your husband has broken his vows.  And your trust in him is now next to nothing.  I understand that.

But there are greater things than your marriage at play here.  Most people in America take marriage for granted and treat it as a social dating contract.  If Americans cultivated a culture where marriage was considered a sacrement, and not necessarily in the way that the Catholics do, perhaps there wouldn’t be 50% divorce rates, a messed up family court system, and dysfunction that seems to snowball as the generations move forward.

I know, I’m rambling now but you have to understand that there are bigger things than you.  Your children are wonderful but lately have appeared to be sad and depressed.  I don’t know what you’ve told them and frankly, it probably doesn’t matter.  They want both their mother and their father to be there for them regardless.

I acknowledge that adultery is one of the few conditions where Jesus made an exception for divorce.  At the same time, Paul himself had little regard for divorce, even in cases of adultery.

I am asking you to do something big here.  I want you to reconcile with your husband legally, and then submit to him.  I don’t mean submit to his leadership.  I mean submit to him entirely.  Don’t treat him with suspicion, don’t montior his Internet habits, don’t fight with him, don’t even question his faith.  Instead, merely submit to him as you would submit to God.

Yes, I am aware that means you will have to have sex with him.  And I am aware that it isn’t going to be a particularly appealing activity.  I won’t say you will enjoy it either.

I am not saying that things will get better if you say with him.  But I know they will get worse for you and for your family, including your extended family.  There is nothing worse than family having to pick sides.

Also, let’s be honest, it will be difficult for you to attract the attentions of another man to marry.  I’m not saying you won’t find one but you are looking at an uphill battle in that regard.

Ignoring the utility of all of this though, what is more important is that you be obedient to God by submitting to your husband and accepting the nature of your oath.

So I implore you to become a better person and take a route no one else recommends and seek God through obedience here and now.  There probably won’t be a reward for it in this life and many people may wonder why you would make a decision but that doesn’t matter.

What matters is what God thinks in all this and what He wants you to do.

I hope and pray that you will lift up all your pain and resentment in all of this to Him and find peace in obedience to Him.

I won’t blame you or condemn you if you decide to ultimately divorce your husband.  That is not what this is about really.  It is simply my own plea to you as a sister to do what is right by God, even if doing what is right seems wrong to you and the rest of the world.

Yours in Christ,

Brother