Some of you have been hanging around here for a long time and you may remember when I shared about Mark leaving 3 years ago and then several months later about him coming home. Some of you are newer friends and aren’t aware that my marriage has been through some hard trials.
For many years, Mark and I did Marriage Monday posts together. We ping-ponged back and forth with “Jill says…” and “Mark says…” talking about marriage challenges, lessons learned, and practical take-aways. Those were very popular posts, but they came to a halt when Mark began to go through what we now know was a mid-life crisis.
Today…and every weekday for the next two weeks, we will be unpacking the storm our marriage went through a little over three years ago.
Today we’ll start with the facts:
I remember the day well. After a long season of confusion, a very hard season of church ministry, a decision to leave pastoring after 20 years, and my 50th birthday, Jill and I were in Florida on a getaway for just the two of us. I was emotionally depleted, disillusioned with God, and discouraged in every part of my life, including my marriage.
We had enjoyed a few low-key days in her parents condo. On our last day there all of my emotions collided. It seemed our differences were magnified in this time away, God wasn’t changing anything in my life that I was praying about, I wasn’t where I expected to be in life by the time I was 50, we continued to have the same challenges in our marriage year after year, and I decided I was done with it all.
I now know that I was living out a full blown mid-life crisis.
I came home from that trip completely resolved. Shortly thereafter a relationship began through Facebook with someone I’d known long ago. Within a matter of months it had moved from an emotional affair to a physical one. I eventually left Jill to pursue this new relationship. I didn’t care what anybody thought. I was doing what I wanted to do.
If you were following the blog back then and read her “From My Heart” post, you might have thought “What in the world was Mark thinking?” My thinking was skewed, no doubt. However, I want to tell you what I was thinking and I want to share the “slow fade” journey with you because if I can prevent any husband or wife from dealing with their life frustrations the way I did, my vulnerability will be worth it all.
When I left, I was headed out of my marriage into another relationship. I had a huge storm raging in my soul that involved myself, my God, the Church (in general) and Jill. I felt hopeless that anything in my life could be different so I decided to take things into my own hands.
We have survived an affair and lived to tell about it. When you experience deep pain, you long for God to redeem it for His purposes. That’s what we hope to do with this blog series and eventually with the No More Perfect Marriages book we’re already working on.
Sharing this kind of story in a public environment is something akin to standing in the middle of a public square with no clothes on. We’d rather keep it to ourselves; but we can’t. God has given us a platform and a calling to make a difference in families. That means sharing honestly about the challenges we have experienced, lived through, and found victory in on the other side.
In order to share the story in a consistent way, we will be devoting the next 2 weeks to our story and the take-aways for every couple that can be culled from our dark season. Will you help us reach more marriages with this story? If you know someone going through a difficult time in their marriage, or a couple who is trying to put together the pieces of their broken relationship, will you invite them to tune into this series?
If you are already subscribed to my blog, you will receive each post in your inbox. If you are here because you saw the post on Facebook or because a friend shared it with you, you might want to subscribe to the blog to receive each post of this series in your inbox.
We also want you to know that throughout this series both Mark and I are committed to be praying for any couple going through a hard season. If you want us to pray for you specifically, please send us a confidential email to jill (at) jillsavage.org and we will add you and your spouse to our prayer list.
There are no perfect marriages, but God uses marriage to perfect us…if we’ll allow Him to.
What about you? Have you been through a hard time in your marriage? Do you have any hard-earned wisdom to share with other couples?
You can read all of the No More Perfect Marriages series here.
JAM Savage Ministries, Copyright 2015
No More Perfect Marriages Challenge
Our 4 week (1 email a week) No More Perfect Marriages e-mail challenge provides inspiration, encouragement and motivation directly to your inbox right when you need it most!