Divorce is never easy, or at least it shouldn't be. It's the tearing of two souls apart, it's not natural, it's not a part of humanity at the core. We weren't created to jump around marriages while maintaining a whole heart, it doesn't work that way. Regardless of this, divorce is prevalent in our day, and is not a new issue. I won't sit here and give you my thoughts on divorce itself. That's a separate issue. I'm here to remind you that if divorce is on your mind, I hope you look at the entire picture before you make a decision. I believe the greatest sin in America today is self-idolatry. It's everywhere, it's rampant and it's like a virus that is sucking the lives out of people. If you don't believe me, just look around. Can you go a day without a hidden message about self-idolatry? Can you go an hour? Can you go a minute? Self-worth, self-happiness, self-promotion, self-image, self-satisfaction, self-esteem...argh, all these words make me sick. Self, self, self. We even have a magazine by the same title. It's this compulsive attitude that we're all owed something. 'I' have to be fit and thin, so 'I'll' do whatever it takes regardless of how it affects everyone in my entire life. 'I' have to be successful and will walk over whoever 'I' can in order to get that promotion. 'I' have to be happy and will walk away from my marriage because it's just too hard to wake up next to that same annoying person everyday.
Our pastor recently quoted that 'anything you're truly pursuing is the thing you worship.' Wow, now those are some very strong words. So what are you pursuing? I'm not against goals, or trying to be the best I can be, but it's interesting to see the things I pour my time and energy into, the things I worship.
Divorce is about self, it's not about anything else. How to make yourself happy, how to get yourself out of a situation, how to create a better future for yourself. Sometimes these ideas are legitimate, sometimes self-safety needs to be a priority. However, it's still about self. Have you ever wondered, or gone through, the other side of the divorce? I'm not talking about as a child, watching your parents go through it, that is hard and sad and again, about self, not your children. What about the rest of the families involved? What do they get out of it? Why aren't their feelings ever considered? Why do two people have the gull to honestly believe divorce is only between them and not directly effecting every single person who had poured their lives into their families and are being completely and utterly heart-broken over the separation? Why aren't their stories ever heard? Sometimes it's easier when an 'Angelina' comes along, then there is at least a third party to blame for the situation. The same reason we cheer for Rihanna and Whitney when they walk away. We need a reason we can grasp, we need to understand why this soul-separation is occurring to the people we love. We rightfully deserve an answer, this is not between two people, this is between all of us involved. So what if we never get an answer? What if we're told to just accept it and move on, like it's none of our business? Like every day we've worked with blood, sweat and tears to build the walls of this tight family up are suddenly torn down without a flinch and we're told to 'get over it.' We cry foul! We say it's not fair! We're hurt, we're upset, we might even throw tantrums. We're not here to judge, to cast blame, we're here because we're hurting and we just want a reason why. We just want something to grasp.
You see, when the tearing apart of souls occurs, it directly affects the dynamics of a family for hundreds of years. No, it's not about two people, it is about every single person surrounding those two people. Are sides taken? Who is in the right? Suddenly close-knit relationships are shattered due to mistrust, lies, manipulation and the dragging of a cherished loved-one's name through the mud. It affects us today, with deep pain and misunderstanding. It affects us tomorrow when we realize family traditions are shattered, no Christmas will ever be the same again. It affects us next week when we're still walking on egg-shells because we don't know what to say and when we say anything it blows up in our face. It affects next month when we're going through a grieving process for the sibling who was so suddenly lost to us, yet they're not dead and we still have nothing to grasp as-to the 'why' of it all. It affects us next year when we have to accept a new relationship, a new person, who potentially will replace that person we loved and cherished as our own brother or sister. It affects five years from now when we have to trust the sibling made a right choice this time and either asked us to accept this new person as an official replacement of the last, or once again, has broken it off, either way reminding us of the one we dearly loved and how great they truly were. It affects us ten years from now when we have to explain to our children who is that missing person in all those pictures and home videos. It affects us twenty years from now when our children use the divorce as excuses for their own failed relationships. It affects us when we see two separate families, one who we can no longer call brother or sister, even though they still feel that way. It affects our hearts, our souls, our minds. It affects every aspect of us. It's a family who was severed. Forever this family is shattered, only to be mended with time, but never truly healed. Forever this family tree has a broken limb. Forever there will be an empty hole in our hearts where a family member once resided. With no reason, nothing to grasp. A family who is mourning the death of a sibling, when no one has died.
So please, if you're considering divorce, take time to remember who you are hurting, who will be affected by it. Take time to talk to the people who love you, who care for you and explain to them the reasons why, give them details, give them something to grasp, give them everything. Take the time to realize you're all in this together, like it or not, and nothing is ever just between the two of you. Take the time to realize your family is not in the same place you're in. If you're this far into the separation, yet your family has just been broken by the news, you cannot expect them to be in the same place you're in, take the time to love on them, explain things to them, understand their anger, their pain, their hurt...this is not about you, it's about others. Through all the years of their undying love, support and care, this is the very least you can give them.