MARRIAGE ON THE ONLY ROCK!
(By: Judy Rousseau)
On my husband's 40th birthday, he turned to me and said, "Judy, I need to tell you something, I just don't love you anymore." I could hardly believe what I was hearing. At that time, we'd been married about 22 years. Things weren't great but I didn't think they were that bad. In the months that followed, our relationship deteriorated to the point that our home was filled with tension and strife. Our four children were getting pretty stressed too. There was a lot of fighting, yelling and slamming doors. It reached the point that I finally asked my husband to move out.
Paul moved in with a friend of his. We were both hurting. I thought I was right and he thought he was right. At the time, it seemed more important to be justified in our anger than it did to try and work things out. Surely I didn't deserve to be treated so poorly after all I've done for him. (I hope you can detect the self-righteous attitude, because believe me ... I certainly had one.)
There wasn't much communication going on. We both worked full time and were now living about 40 minutes away from each other. Neither of us had anything good to say so we simply said nothing. My husband wasn't getting any positive attention from me and became vulnerable to the affections of a very attractive divorced woman that he worked with. When I learned about the affair, I decided that the only thing for me to do was to get a lawyer to draw up divorce papers. I gave my lawyer all the necessary information and couldn't wait until she would just "get this thing over with." For some reason, I thought a divorce was the answer or at least what was expected of me under the circumstances. The weeks went on and the lawyer seemed to be dragging her feet. Eventually she told me, "Judy, I have to be honest with you. I walk with God; and, because I do ... I can not proceed with your case. I will not be party to burying something that isn't dead. I believe if you will be patient, your marriage can be saved."
"Never Have I Felt Such Despair"
Never have I felt such despair. What would I do now? I had no lawyer and I certainly didn't want to go through providing all that information to someone else. I have to admit, the time that I was pursuing a divorce were some of the blackest, most hopeless days I've ever lived. I had no peace.
I sought help from a beloved Christian friend who had known me for some time. She asked me, "Judy, if God were standing right in front of you and asked you what you would like Him to do for you ... what would you tell him?" The words came easily as my eyes filled with tears. I said, "I would ask Him to bring my husband back to Himself and back to our family. I would ask Him to use our family as an example of His ability to heal and restore." My friend, Jeanne said, "Well then, we know how to pray ... don't we?"
All of a sudden, everything seemed so simple. Within a few days God spoke to me and said, "Yes, Judy. You do have grounds for divorce and I will permit it if that is what you want. However, if you are willing to walk with me through this time, I will bring you great victory. But ... it will be very difficult."
At that moment, I chose to allow the Lord to bring me the great victory He promised. At first I expected that my husband would be home any day. I thought God was going to hit him with a "lightning bolt" and correct everything that was wrong in his life. Boy, was I wrong. God began to change me. He taught me so much as I waited on him. God allowed me to see that the love that I had for my husband was not really love at all. He showed me that. He loved me in spite of my imperfections, unconditionally. Could I offer my husband any less? God's truth and mercy exposed my selfishness and I sought His forgiveness. I contacted my husband to tell him the "great news" that I wanted to get back together with him. He was not impressed and told me that nothing had changed. He still did not love me and right now he was caught up in an exciting new romance.
As I waited on the Lord to bring me the great victory He promised, I began to be able to identify with His suffering and the rejection He had felt. Yet, He chose to love anyway. He did not throw stones at the adulterous woman, He offered her mercy and forgiveness and as His follower, I needed to treat my husband the same way.
People thought I was crazy. Why in the world would I hold on to someone who was treating me so? Certainly, God does not expect me to suffer in this way. Even Christians, counseled me to get a divorce ... God had someone better for me. Over and over again, God gave me the grace to put more faith in His word than the words of other people. Three of my four children didn't understand why I was holding on to their father and praying for him. My son, Mark, who loves the Lord and walks with Him was given a vision that someday his dad would be back. He was a constant source of encouragement to me. My other children focused on the pain that we were all going through. It was stressful being a single parent, having to be both Mom and Dad work full time and take care of the house, etc.
As I was burdened down with single parenthood, my husband was living the life of a free man. No cares, no commitment. He would spend most of his time with his girlfriend and her three children and whenever he wanted to take off for a ride on his motorcycle, he was gone. Paul had become very bitter about the things of God and said to me. I bet you think that GOD is going to do some great big miracle in my life ... don't you?" I did not answer, but in my heart I said ... YES!!!
I prayed for my husband a lot ... probably at least two hours throughout the course of each day. I searched the scriptures and underlined hundreds of promises God wrote to encourage and guide me. He also raised up several faithful prayer partners to encourage me and keep me accountable to the decision I had made. I could probably write an entire book about these wonderful individuals but I don’t want to distract you from the story of my marital miracle-in-process.
The Wal-Mart Story
However, there is one prayer partnership that I really need to tell you about because it is such an awesome story. One day, my two youngest boys and I were headed to Wal-Mart. For some strange reason that I didn't know at the time, I chose to go through the center of Milford, New Hampshire rather than take the bypass. There in the center of the Milford oval was a traffic rotary which was completely bottlenecked … no one was moving. I casually looked to my left and saw a motorcycle headed in the opposite direction only a couple of feet away from my car. I was stunned; it was my husband with his girlfriend’s arms tightly wrapped about him. Out of impulse, I tooted the horn and waved. He dropped his sunglasses and sheepishly waved to me and within seconds the traffic moved him along the highway and he was gone. I took a deep breath and told my boys that they needed to help me pray. (I’m sure they rolled their eyes thinking that their Mom was crazy.) I began to pray a prayer something like this …
Lord, what just happened here has to be something that You arranged because even if I tried to meet Paul at this precise spot at this precise time, something would have gone wrong. There is absolutely no reason for Paul to be here right now. He usually works Saturdays, he lives almost an hour away and the timing of this meeting today is too perfect for it to be anything other than a miracle. Of all the millions of people in this world, who aren’t my husband, You put him right there at the exact moment when I could not miss seeing him. Lord, Your word says that You will work all things together for good because I love You and am called according to Your plans, so Father, I ask You to work good even from this difficult situation. Take hold of my heart and make me the person You desire me to be. Encourage my sons to trust You that You will one day bring their father home. For all these things I praise you in Jesus name. Amen.
When I arrived at Wal-Mart, I heard the Lord speak to me once again. He said, "Judy, today I am going to raise up someone in Wal-Mart who is going to pray for you and your family." Hmmm … I wonder who...I thought as I locked up the car. I gave my boys their instructions and asked them to meet them in an hour in front of the checkout. I then began to question the Lord about how I would know the person. He responded, "You will know."
I stood still for about a minute and a half in front of the lawn and garden department and then a young man passed by. His shirt read, "The Lord’s gym – His pain, your gain." As the man walked by, the Lord said, "That is the man." I followed him beginning to rehearse what I would say to him and found him kneeling down looking at fishing equipment in the sports section of the store.
I uttered a silent prayer, took a deep breath and tapped him on the shoulder. "Excuse me, I said, I’ve never done anything like this before but today as I got out of my car here at Wal-Mart, the Lord spoke to me. He said that He was going to raise up someone in Wal-Mart who was going to pray for me and my family. When you walked by, the Lord told me that person is you. "The man jumped to his feet raised his hands in the air and said, "Praise the Lord". "Yes, I thought … this is the right guy." Can you imagine what would have happened if I’d picked the wrong person. Security probably would have put me on permanent lay-away!
The man asked how he could pray for me. I now introduced myself and told him that my boys and I had just seen my husband on his motorcycle with his girlfriend but that I was believing God to restore him to Himself, and then back to me and our children.
The anointing of God came over this wonderful brother and he spoke, "Judy, you keep your eyes firmly planted on the word of God. Don’t look to the left, don’t look to the right, don’t listen to man, don’t listen to woman, but keep your eyes firmly planted on the word of God. For I want to tell you, Judy, your husband’s relationship with this other woman CANNOT and WILL NOT PREVAIL AGAINST THE WORD AND WILL OF ALMIGHTY GOD!!!!
Wow!!! I was so overwhelmed I nearly fell over backwards. I felt as if I was face to face with an Old Testament prophet. The words he spoke ministered such hope to me that I thought on them many times during the remaining days of our separation. Several times the "prophet’s" words reminded me not to heed the advice of well meaning friends, but to focus only on the Word and Will of God.
After I recuperated from the impact of what he spoke, I asked him his name and a little bit about himself. He told me that his name was Adam and that he and his wife, Dorothy, lived nearby. He then allowed me to talk for a few more minutes giving him details and Paul’s business card to remind him to pray.
After I had spilled out all that I had to say, this patient man said to me that he had something to tell me. He proceeded to tell me that he had been praying that the Lord would use his life to help others. Adam admitted to me that he had observed God’s supernatural workings in the lives of his friends but had never really experienced such a move of God himself so he had included a special request in his prayer that someday the Lord would touch his life in a supernatural way. He closed his prayer with a typical amen and then went into Wal-Mart to buy some fishing equipment.
Suddenly … this little lady who he has never seen before taps him on the shoulder and tells him that "he is the one that God had chosen to help her pray for her family. So, when Adam jumped to his feet, he did so because that supernatural prayer of his had been answered.
NOT A COINCIDENCE
Now … some may say that my Wal-Mart story is a coincidence but I think NOT. When I think about what happened that Saturday afternoon, I am powerfully moved by how God’s hand knows exactly where everyone will be and at what precise moment. His hand arranged that I would see my husband and then that I would meet Adam (and he would meet me) at just the right moment. I ask you, what are the chances of this happening all by itself? I just love the way that God can answer the prayers of two strangers through the same set of circumstances.
I also received a lot of support from my pastor who offered my prayer partners and me the use of the church on Monday nights. We gathered every Monday night for prayer after fasting all day. This evolved into a Monday night prayer meeting for marriages and families which continues to this day. Four to eight of us meet every week and pray for couples that have been brought to our attention. (If you are interested in having your name added to our prayer basket, please e-mail me or contact Precious Testimonies.)
Things began to change in Paul’s life and he began to reach out to the Lord for help. He admits that His life had become such a mess but I’m so grateful to say, after three and one half years, my prodigal husband returned to the Lord and our family. It took a long time, but God has made a new man out of him and neither of us are the same people we once were. Our children rejoice as well and are now fully healed from the pain of that difficult time.
I pray that this testimony brings you hope, peace and encouragement. What God has done for us, He can and will do for you.
God bless you and thank you for taking the time to read my testimony!
If you are struggling in your marriage, and would like to contact Paul or Judy, they also would be more than willing to talk and pray with you and for you. Because of what they've been through, God has placed a call on their hearts to reach out to hurting marriages. They welcome you to email them at email@example.com. They are willing to accept phone calls from those personally wanting to speak to them too, and can be reached at (603) 924-2301.
Also, for more encouragement for your own situation or if you have a friend or loved one who is in a troubled marriage, you can see and hear how Judy and her husband, Paul, share from their hearts the pain they each personally endured until their marriage, family, and love for each other was totally restored by God. This testimony is now available on a full-length 2-hr DVD, called MIRACLE MARRIAGE RESTORATION, Tape No. 300.
Judy also does a powerful & hope-inspiring video sharing about God's desire to give you joy, and how to spread it to others entitled GET SOME REAL JOY! (Tape #301).
We are also pleased to present to you another two-part series by Judy Rousseau on the much needed subject of prayer. This two-tape series gives powerful insights into how to pray more wisely and effectively. It is called NEVER QUIT PRAYING OR TRUSTING (Tape #302 & 303)
We offer these tapes on a free-will-offering basis with a suggested donation amount of $15.00 per DVD and $10.00 per audio, which also covers S&H. If you would like to receive a copy of any of these awesome testimonies, please click on the donate button above in the top right corner of this page, list the tape number(s), and specify if you would like audio or DVD & your donation amount.
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