I fell on the bed exhausted. Thoughts I had never dreamed I'd have had been bombarding me for months. And for the first time in years I felt the pangs of an old foe...guilt. I turned on some worship music and cried. I told the Lord how awful and dirty I felt. I lay there arms outstretched and let his love flow over me until I fell asleep.
This was the turning point for me.
You see, I absolutely adore my husband. For the first four years of our marriage, no matter what financial problem, personal tragedy, or health issue came up, we were a team!
But this past year I found myself thinking about another guy while I was with him...
Yeah, this was not like me.
Yeah, I was completely ashamed of it.
And it didn't just suddenly happen one day. It was far more subtle than that.
It started with something Joe would fail to do or something rude he would say, and immediately I'd hear the lie...he doesn't think you're lovable anymore.
And then he'd be too tired to do anything when he got home, and the lie would surface again...he doesn't want to spend time with you anymore.
At first I shrugged the little thoughts off. But they came more and more often, and after a while I got too tired to fight. I started to believe the ultimate lie...your husband doesn't like you anymore.
So I started making some new friends and started finding in them what I thought I was looking for...someone thought I was interesting! After I had spent the last year feeling invisible, someone saw me and wanted to know me!
The lie surfaced in a different way this time...your husband doesn't make you happy anymore...maybe one of them can...
And when I looked up, I saw how far my thoughts had fallen, and how far they had taken me with them.
We all hear the stories of spouses committing adultery, of families torn by it. We never think it will be us. We never dream that we would be seduced by its call. I certainly never thought it'd be me. And even though nothing physical had happened, it was still adultery. In my heart, I had already been putting another man in my husband's place. Didn't Jesus say, "anyone who looks at a woman lustfully, has already committed adultery with her in his heart"(Matthew 5:28)? Mine may not have been a sexual lust, but it was an emotional one. That's when I realized I needed help.
After that surrender to the Lord in tears of shame, He started opening up conversation with mentors who prayed for and encouraged my marriage. And then He opened up conversation with my husband. And I realized that he was having a fight of his own. I had been so caught up in my own battle that I had failed to see how discouraged and alone he was.
What I realized from this year-long fight in my heart is that any marriage can fall into adultery, that even women are susceptible, and that it doesn't happen overnight. I also realized that it's so important to have people in my life who can encourage and correct me without judging me. People who have been where I am and can show me the way out. If you are in this place, dear sister, please do not fight alone. Bring it all before your Father in heaven and he will bring you people who will help you.