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Support Through Prayer ...Part 3

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blakesteele posted 1/13/2016 10:31 AM

Decided to stop my involvement with our churches "small group experience". I prayed on it and sought counsel. It was the right thing to do.'

The next meeting, when my wife went alone, she came back and sheepishly reported "It felt more freeing to go without you".

I get this.

I feel the same way as I go to "Mens Church" (a group of 5-8 men who meet for 1 hour before regular church). I also see this same dynamic at play with the other guys.....very open and vulnerable in a group of men, much more guarded around their wives.

For the record it was a hard choice for me. My previous "driven" nature would have me working hard to "make small group work work work"....it feels good to still have desire within my heart but to temper my choices, contemplate them before I just "get busy".

Anyone relate? Its pretty new to me.

Learning that "busy" doesn't always equate to "productive".

outoftheashes posted 1/13/2016 13:25 PM

hihn, thank you for sharing the promises! I read something the other day about God offering comfort and us needing to be more mindful of what comfort can be: a song, a verse, an article right when we need it, or a person reaching out when we need it. I think this group is comfort personified.

Blakesteele,

shot yes, but we can still fight
YES! Thank you for those words, they were timely. I can relate to your small group experience in that my nature used to be very driven. Its difficult, but rewarding, learning to temper that nature.

I wanted to share with those of you praying for us that I believe God has given me some signs that this child is my husband's baby. I've been praying fervently that the prenatal DNA test be wrong and for the other man to be this child's father, however, on Saturday I prayed for God to give us a miracle, to have the DNA test have been wrong, but if that was not his will, then to help me see the miracle in this situation. Shortly after that, I sat down and logged into facebook. One of the first things to pop up was a picture of a child shared by someone from a pro-life group with the quotes "not an accident, not a mistake, not a punishment, not a burden, but a miracle". I nodded to God at that, but was still resisting him. My flesh so badly does not want this! Sunday I prayed again for God to answer my prayers. I sat down a bit later with my Bible. Typically I pray for God to direct me to the message he wants me to hear. I opened up to Matthew, the chapter where Jesus is in the garden praying for God to take this cup from him. My study Bible gave the explanation of this verse being an example of God not answering prayers, through no fault of the one praying. WOW. At this point, tears streaming down my face, I shared with my husband and accepted what is coming. Currently I'd really appreciate prayers for my husband and I to handle the situation and each other with patience and grace and for the OW's heart to be changed. She once again reached out to my husband and I believe is bitter that he is not dropping everything to be with her and cannot understand that his priorities have to be split between his wife and existing child, along with the new child and her needs that she would like him to meet. I'm praying desperately for God to work in her heart and her life. I'm hopeful for this situation, but it will be much more difficult if the OW continues on the path she has been on in dealing with us and it. Either way, God's got us I know, but again, that flesh of mine would like this to be a bit easier. Please also pray for us to have wisdom with our four year old and how we handle this with him. Thank you so much for all of your prayers and for the wisdom shared here. On my desperate days, I find myself reading past threads to gain hope and insight. God bless!

blakesteele posted 1/15/2016 16:52 PM

Soooo cool how God works.....its easier to spot when you are not in the trenches and heat of the battle. Its one of the beauties of honest fellowship. I'm not saying my Small Group was dishonest....but the overall sense was one of either "It is what it is" or "be thankful for what you got". For the record, I agree with both of these but see them as partial truths.

We are all dealt things we'd rather not....."It is what it is". But I also believe we are to play the hand we are dealt....the parable of the 3 servants intrusted with a portion of the Masters fortune. Those servants that found the courage to DEAL with what they were handed were rewarded for their good stewardship. The one that acted in fear and did nothing (refused to risk ACTING with the hand he was dealt) received nothing.

We are all blessed...and absolutely should be thankful. But there is a sense of "minimizing" if one simply stops with "It is what it is"....a sense of resignation. Where is the JOY in that.

I sense in me a feeling of "Okay, this trial just got ramped up....I must be on the narrow path....just what is ahead for me!" followed by a smile. I am treating this as a sign the enemy senses something GOOD is being produced, and he ramps up his efforts to derail that JOY.


She once again reached out to my husband and I believe is bitter that he is not dropping everything to be with her and cannot understand that his priorities have to be split between his wife and existing child, along with the new child and her needs that she would like him to meet. I'm praying desperately for God to work in her heart and her life.

This is a classic example. Satan sees you BOTH growing through this trial....and not just get through it. He senses you both are risking your hearts once again (investing the blessings you have been given by real world actions that line up with God's words). You and your husband are mounting, with Gods help, a real resistance to satans efforts. Seeing as neither of you will stumble as easily as you may have before...its natural to go after and use the weakest link he can. In this case that weak link is the OW. If I were fighting you two, I would enlist the same tactic. Remember, satan and sin are all about easy paths.

Want to really ramp up the battle? Continue doing what you are.....when you feel that resistance and are tempted to retreat, pray for others. I particularly like to pray for the atheists in our families. I'm not tempting the devil, I am taping into God and the restorative power Jesus bestows in each one of us who believe.

Satans not the only one noticing this growing strength in y'all....I see it too.

Oh......and what a powerful reminder you have to us with this.

I'm praying desperately for God to work in her heart and her life.

This is what is meant when we are called to pray for our enemies. You don't pray they continue to attack you....you pray that they may be convicted of their wrongful actions, and then choose right ones.

For the record.....I have been convicted that some of MY choices have been wrong. Its humbling, but I see more and more that God's corrective actions\convictions in my own life are done out of love and are designed to grow my love. Grow my love towards God, myself and others.

If this wasn't so dang painful, it is actually quite exciting.

I just love how so many of my "agreements" have been proven false.


When satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future.

Thank God we are more then we were, thankful for the people we are today, excited and hopeful for the people we are growing into!

Merida posted 1/17/2016 04:49 AM

outoftheashes I am going to admit I have only lurked here recently with your posting your choice... I too thought I was Godly supporting my husband to stay involved with a toxic parent in regards to "interests of the children" . Then she flat out told us she would use her children to take ours away and had no problem filing a false CPS report. Thank GOD we had the folder from all of the custody mess where we could provide the GAL and the psych eval and there was nothing done.

We failed at parallel parenting with an NPDer despite what I thought were prayers and best intentions ...well as they wrote in your garden analogy, through no fault as GOD's ways are not mans' ways . Personally I found great comfort in the passages regarding Hagar and Ishmael... God did just fine to provide IMO

I pray for you to have the wisdom to know consciously what GOD is truly calling you to do and not just based upon your emotional reaction to what you see around you and know regarding your family history. My maternal Gma is the NPDer, I have a soft spot for kids who don't ask for lousy parents... but when I became a parent myself I lost sight in remaining a true child so I needed to be loved in only the way that GOD loves to show me my job is not to "be the parent", the "leader" and always rescue and help others when my own house was built on sand. I thought I was a brave woman, turns out I got smacked with my pride and being merely unselfish instead of charitable which I am fine to be realizing I had a lot more inward growing to do.

So while I realize my path is not your path I say this as we are all brothers and sisters in the awareness that DNA don't mean a damn thing = you yourself speak that your spirit is apart from your flesh (well I read it that way) so I pray you really get that that child is not awake yet, not a part of the kingdom yet but that lordwilling your relationship will allow that door to be opened. As for the wisdom to allow an unwed OW to find her husband and father for that OC there is a lot of truth I believe in allowing her to make her own family and there is a lot of truth in questioning if it is necessarily better for a child to be shuffled between homes without a HOME. I pray for you to have the wisdom to truly hear what you and your husband are called to do and that as your husband loves you as Christ loves the church that you submit when you wrote:

his priorities have to be split between his wife and existing child, along with the new child
IMO your husband's priority is to grow closer to GOD and as you both grow closer to HIM your marriage and family grows closer. I pray you do not dishonor your marriage and vows to GOD regarding the OWs needs. Yes,she needs prayers = please Lord may the scales fall from her eyes and may she truly SEE and no longer be satan's tool used in weakness.

Peace sister, an OC miracle is truly a wake up call to just how much we are all part of the human family and that I have to be OK with allowing GOD to be the parent = that it is OK for me to do less so that HE can do more

M

edited to add

blakesteele = change is exciting

no pain, no gain ;-) it's all good all the time knowing suffering is optional = the cup is always full of the living water needed to quench our thirst

[This message edited by Merida at 5:20 AM, January 17th (Sunday)]

steadychevy posted 1/17/2016 08:31 AM

hihn, I just read the verses you provided. Thank you for doing so.

The most powerful verse in the scripture is John 3:16. It always strikes deep into me. Personally I like the King James version better than either of my newer bibles, Good News or NIV. The latter two are easier to read, though.

hopefull77 posted 1/17/2016 13:46 PM

Happy Sunday Everyone... I thought I would share a reflection from my daily devotional with you all...

Practice
The Sacred Heart
As a Catholic, I was often puzzled by the continued return to heart imagery among our saints and in our art. The "Sacred Heart" of Jesus and the "Immaculate Heart of Mary," where both are pointing to their blazing heart, are images known to Catholics worldwide. I often wonder what people actually do with these images. Are they mere sentiment? Are they objects of worship or objects of transformation? Such images keep recurring because they must have something important, good, and perhaps even necessary to teach the soul. What might that be?

Many have described prayer as bringing your thinking down into your heart. Next time a resentment, negativity, or irritation comes into your mind, and you are tempted to play it out or attach to it, instead move that thought or person into your heart space--literally. There, surround this negativity with silence (which is much easier to do in the heart) and your pumping blood (which will often feel warm like coals). In this place, it is almost impossible to comment, judge, create story lines, or remain antagonistic. You are in a place that does not create or feed on contraries but is the natural organ of life, embodiment, and love. Love lives and thrives in the heart space.

This practice has kept me from wanting to hurt people who have hurt me. It keeps me from obsessive, repetitive, or compulsive head games. It can make the difference between being happy and being miserable and negative.

Could this be what we are really doing when we pray for someone? Yes, we are holding them in our heart space. Do it in a physical, experiential way and you will see how calmly and quickly it works. Now the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart have been transferred to you. They are pointing for you to join them there. The "sacred heart" is then your heart too.

SongofSolomon posted 1/22/2016 00:21 AM

Even in the best of times, I feel less than because of the affair. I have to remember my favorite scriptures that remind me I was knitted in the womb by God, and that He is near to me always.

Psalm 34:18 "The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit."

Psalm 139:13-15 "For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth."

Amen

outoftheashes posted 1/22/2016 12:35 PM

Merida,

Thank you so much for your comments. In all truthfulness, I do believe that God is calling us to be a part of this child's life. I've wrestled with him quite a bit over the past few weeks as the closer we get to the due date the more my flesh does not want this (and I've wrestled much more since your comments). Part of me, especially based on many of the experiences of those on the OC board, absolutely wants to ignore what God is calling me to and have no parts of this. My H and I have discussed it multiple times, but I keep coming back to God. I have no illusions that this is going to be easy in any way shape or form, but I do think God is telling us this is what he wants for us, both through signs I've received and through my son. I'm not sure how far back you've read, but my four year old, who has no idea that he may be a big brother, decided a few weeks before Christmas that he wanted a baby sister (out of absolutely nowhere, I could hardly breathe when he asked me to help him pray for a baby sister, the OC is a girl). Since then he's talked about it quite a bit, even saying the other night that his sister could have his playroom for her bedroom. I do believe God is working to prepare him for this too and that this is another sign that we are to welcome this child.

I'm fairly spiteful most of the time about the OW, but when I can look at it from another perspective than mine, I don't necessarily think she is NPD, she's young, immature and selfish. In all honesty, this morning my husband ran into her at the convenience store and she was talking to him about the DNA test and then said she would reach out to me, which is what we've been asking all along, that she work through me/with me. (In my eyes, God deserves ALL of the PRAISE for this, I've been praying daily that he work on changing her heart toward this situation, I'll take baby steps over no steps any day) I don't think she's a horrible person, just one that made horrible choices and she is a good mom to her other children. Doesn't mean I'll ever trust her or be happy about what happened. My counselor feels she is co-dependent and believes that as soon as she can she will find another man. However, based on her actions so far and her family history, I don't necessarily know that she would be finding a husband/father for the OC, so much as she may bounce from unhealthy relationship to unhealthy relationship. Our goal is to provide as steady a home here as possible.

Thank you again for your feedback and I'm sure what will be continued support as we work through this, I really do appreciate it, this forum and the OC forum more than I could ever express. I'm not sure how individuals begin to heal (let alone deal with an OC situation) without God. He's held me through every single time I thought I could not make it. Prayers and blessings to each of you.

hihn posted 1/22/2016 13:34 PM

Merida I also thank you in outoftheashes behalf. Each time I read outoftheashes posts here on STP-3 I found myself thinking the OC could very well turn out to be a blessing for her. We don't know how God is going to play this out for her. While outoftheashes scenario isn't like my scenario, I did have two stepsons for 27 years. When Dday happened and my stepsons were informed of my WH and I splitting up, my youngest stepson wrote me a letter. In that letter he mentioned his concern over the possibility of losing one of his mothers and said he couldn't bare the thought of it and didn't want that to happen and asked if I would remain in touch with him. Until I read his letter I never knew he saw himself as having two mothers. Especially since he asked me when he was around 5 years old if he should call be mom and I said he already had a mother that loved him and that name belonged to her. Then I told him to call me whatever he wanted to call me and I would be ok with it. So even though he already had a mother he grew up believing he was blessed with two sets of parents. The reality was that he was blessed to have two moms and two dads all of which loved him and influenced some part of his life. This very situation could end up being played out in outoftheashes life. God has his ways which are not our ways and his ways always involve his love for those who love and glorify him.

hihn posted 1/22/2016 13:41 PM

steadychevy and SongofSolomon thanks for the scripture references. God has often used others to remind me, or tell me something he wants me to hear. He has used you two through your scripture posting to do just that. I pray we all keep listening and seeking the God that loves us.

hihn posted 1/22/2016 13:51 PM

Steadychevy

The most powerful verse in the scripture is John 3:16. It always strikes deep into me.

Me too! It makes me think of the spikes going through Jesus hands. God loved me enough to allow his beloved son to suffer for my sake, my sins. It pierces my heart everytime I see that image of the spikes driven through his hands.

SongofSolomon posted 1/22/2016 23:55 PM

Taking the "high road" (whatever that is) can be so frustrating. One thing I've learned as a BS is that you can't make others attribute meaning to your love, sacrifice, covenant, etc. I remember some advice one of my spiritual mentors gave me was to basically stay in prayer and do my best not to act out of my flesh (throwing/breaking things, cursing, stalking, what have you). I have done a fairly good job, but I've had my moments. I had a big explosion today where I lost my marbles and straight out attacked (verbally) my WH. As balm to my heart, I went into prayer afterward. I was more disappointed that I gave in to my flesh than anything. I prayed this:

Psalm 6:1-10

O Lord, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath. Be gracious to me, O Lord for I am languishing; heal me, O Lord, for my bones are troubled. My soul also is greatly troubled. But you, O Lord--how long? Turn, O Lord, deliver my life; save me for the sake of your steadfast love. For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who will give you praise? I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief; it grows weak because of all my foes. Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping.The Lord has heard my plea; the Lord accepts my prayer. All my enemies shall be ashamed and greatly troubled; they shall turn back and be put to shame in a moment.

In this prayer, I don't necessarily think of my WH or the OW as my "enemies". I think of the things inside myself that have given way to suffering and unhealthy coping.

FutureTense1 posted 1/23/2016 01:15 AM

Not new to prayer.
Just absent .→for years-
Prayer, Confession, readings the Good Book works.
For US. - Period.
╬ ╬

steadychevy posted 1/23/2016 07:18 AM

Psalm 34 and 139 verses were comforting, SongofSolomon. Doesn't it seem like Psalm 6:1-10 was written (prayed) for the betrayed. But then isn't the scripture full of support, comfort, direction (along with the warnings of the wages of sin).

demolishedinside posted 1/23/2016 08:18 AM

Hello, stopping in here for my first time. Glad to see names I recognize and respect.

I am likely more spiritual than religious but grew up Catholic and am a practicing Lutheran.

I was looking for some support and maybe a verse for staying in the present? I'm struggling to live now. I need to stay in this moment. I've lost too much time to all of this already. While we work in IC, I really just need to find strength and support. Hugs to all of you.

outoftheashes posted 1/23/2016 12:50 PM

demolishedinside, it's so hard to stay present isn't it? I'm always either looking back with regret or looking ahead with trepidation and/or fear. I pray constantly to battle those feelings. Psalm 34:18 helps me so much: the Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. How comforting to know he knows my broken heart. Psalm 46:10 is also a go to for me: Be still and know that I am God.

I'll say a prayer for you. I'd also encourage you to just open up your Bible. So many times I've prayed for God to lead me to the message he has for me and then open my Bible up to exactly what I needed to hear, the Holy Spirit knows what you need before you ask and if you'll let yourself open up to receive His message, there is immense comfort to be found there. Journal it! When I'm lead to something that is particularly profound for where I'm at and what I need, I journal it to look back and see God at work in my life, it's nice to have in those days when pressing on seems impossible.

demolishedinside posted 1/23/2016 20:37 PM

Thank you, outoftheashes, I'll look those up. And I will not turn down any prayers. I sure do appreciate this community. SI is a special place.

needfriendshere posted 1/24/2016 12:28 PM

demolishedinside,

Two of my favorite promises in the Bible are:

"In this world you will find tribulation. But be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world." And:

"God works all things to the good for those who love Him"...

Hang in there! Life is a gift from God. Man has messed it up to some degree. But if and when we turn to Him, we can find joy and peace in the midst of our struggles.

Area57 posted 1/26/2016 02:56 AM

Your first page you talk about being passive and living in pain and Satan attacking you. I'm not sure exactly what you mean but I am too passive. I have been for a while now.

I let people abuse me, I let people bully me and try to just slip through life unnoticed.

How do I take the first steps to confront the battle? I think I already have actually. the first step is knowing you have a problem. I want the world and everyone in it to be nice and peaceful but it isn't and I have to stand up for myself.

I reread the Meek shall inherit the earth. I had always translated it as we are supposed to be meek and turn the other cheek, that sort of thing, but I don't think that is what it means. I don't think we are supposed to take abusive and not fight back in a healthy way. It isn't wrong to stand up for yourself, it is right!

hopefull77 posted 1/27/2016 08:08 AM

Good Morning....
I wanted to share a paragraph from my daily meditation today....
peace everyone


When forgiveness becomes a weighing and judging process, then we who are in charge can measure it, define who is in and who is out, find ways to earn it, and exclude the unworthy. We have then destroyed the likelihood that people will ever experience the pure gift of God's grace and forgiveness.

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