It’s called “no fault” divorce and is the law of our land. Simply stated, it means that when two people in a marriage have hit a brick wall, they are concluded to have irreconcilable differences. Approximately one-third of the states require a waiting period before a “no fault” can be filed; ranging from 180 days to 5 years. It’s a small slice of righteousness requirement in a culture where convenience outranks covenant.
When you think of the word “polar”, does “cold” come to mind? How about frigid, arctic, or extreme conditions. “Polar opposites” is a phrase used to describe two people whose relationship has iced over, with diametrically opposed values and positions. We might say they will never be reconciled, barring a miracle that is. Who can live in such a place unless equipped with very special clothing and accommodations? (In spiritual terms, we could say an extravagant appropriation of grace) I honor and commend couples that could have easily divorced, with legit grounds, but pressed through into restoration.
Reflecting back over thirty years of ministry, I have met with many couples: pondering divorce, going through a divorce, or trying to recover after a divorce. In every situation, my main mission is to connect the person’s heart to Christ in a way that will give fresh perspective. When a couples’ gaze has become fixed on each other and not the Lord, everything seems to sink to the lowest place.
One question that I pose to couples who have come to the end of their rope and say they’ve tried everything, is this: “Have you reconciled your own heart with God? Is there any area of your heart that you are withholding from Him? Are there irreconcilable differences with Jesus?”
Seventy percent of spouses who opt for divorce, will remarry based on the belief that they have found someone more compatible. Of this newly remarried group sixty percent will divorce again. You may be reading this thinking, How can people be all over the map like this? Or, I’ve experienced the pain of divorce and it’s true. People do change and some differences are so firmly entrenched, they will never budge.
A primary reason for the sad, aforementioned statistic, is that divorcees proceed into new relationships still not reconciled with God. “But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him].” (2 Cor.5:18-19 AMP)
Satan’s subtle strategy is to reverse the efficacy of this truth: to first divorce my heart from Christ and then to sow discord into the primary pillars of my community. If you’re single this would be family, friends, ministry partners, etc.. If married this would potentially be all of the above, and primarily your one-flesh partner.
Couples: keep your heart in daily harmony with God. Stay reconciled. Pray for & encourage your spouse to do the same.
Next blog: “Redemption After Divorce”