I was sitting in church yesterday, with a heavy heart of stone. It had been a few weeks since my wife finally decided to provide me with the answers to some unanswered questions. Her responses were troubling and unsettling. It confirmed my suspicions, but also shook me up. Her reasons for all of this are assumptions without facts. A little communication between the two of us could have spared a 9-month separation and bitter dispute. She has her reality. For her there’s no going back.
Now, we are days away from finalizing a divorce. I’m tired of the fight. Yet, despite everything that’s happened, I’d still take her back if she was willing. Admittedly, there would be some major issues that would take a long time to work through and to heal from. I don’t understand why I have to go through this. Our life was so good, with issues common to every marriage. I can’t help but feel uncertainty and sadness as I face the reality that’s coming. These phrases from a hymn touched my heart yesterday:
“For us on Calvary’s cross he bled, and thus dispelled the awful gloom.” Life is full of gloom, disappointments, failures and tragedies. Christ’s suffering takes care of that. He suffered for everything I am going through. So he knows how to succor me.
“The law was broken; Jesus died that justice might be satisfied.” My circumstances do not seem just. It’s so one-sided. It fulfills her desires, not mine. It’s not fair. The scriptures are full of instances where good people experienced trials that were not fair. Joseph, Jacob’s good and innocent son, was sold into Egypt by his brothers. He was wrongfully accused of cheating on Potiphar’s wife and locked up in jail. He spent many years in captivity before he became Pharoah’s second in command.
It wasn’t fair that Lehi and his family, who had a good life in Jerusalem, had to leave it all behind because the Lord said it would be destroyed. All their wealth, their comfortable home, was lost and they wandered in the wilderness for 8 years before they found the promised land. Add insult to injury when they were instructed to go back to get the brass plates, risking their life for it. They suffered starvation, fatigue, family arguments, children being born in the wilderness. It was many years before the Lord blessed them.
Christ himself, the only perfect man who ever lived, suffered, was beaten, and hung on a cross for simply proclaiming the truth that he was the Son of God. It wasn’t fair that that happened, but it was all made right in the end.
As Whitney L. Clayton said, “The trial of our faith will always involve staying true to simple, daily practices of faith. Then, and only then, does He promise that we will receive the divine response for which we long. Only once we have proven our willingness to do what He asks without demanding to know the whens, the whys, and the hows do we “reap the rewards of [our] faith, and [our] diligence, and patience, and long-suffering.”
“Freed from the pow’r of death and pain.” The ultimate and overarching purpose of Christ’s Atonement is so that we can overcome our trials. There is purpose in the things we experience. Understanding may not come in this life, but there is hope.
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