March 13, 2020
Today’s sermon was the last in the series, “For Better of Worse.” Pastor Selena’s scripture reference was Matthew 19: 4-6. Rightfully so, the last sermon was titled, “Until Death Do us Part.” But what happens with a marriage does not fit that phrase? What happens when a marriage does not survive?
Today, Brad and Laura came forward to share their experience. Always, the good news first! Brad proposed last Sunday, and Laura said, “Yes!”. Laura explained her answer was a culmination of many ups and downs in their dating relationship. They met at the Friday Night Well Redemption services.
Laura started attending the Well three years ago, and Brad two years ago. When Laura started attending, she was broken. Her husband of 13 years told her he no longer loved her. Laura spend many Sundays at the altar and she also had many conversations with people in the church. She faithfully prayed and fasted while reading the Word. She desperately wanted to keep her marriage with her husband. It was not to be.
Brad has been attending The Well for 2 years. He was married for 8 years. He experienced the death of 4 family members within a very short time. He leaned on meth and alcohol to see him through his despair. He ended up serving 20 months in prison. His wife took their two kids and left the marriage. Brad does not blame his wife. He continues to ask forgiveness from his wife and kids.
Both were broken in different ways, but both were looking to God for guidance. Brad and Laura came from very different upbringings. Brad struggled early in their relationship with staying clean. He is clean now and he and Laura are faithful to each other is all ways. They pray together, they surround themselves with Godly married couples, they pour their love and life experiences into others who are in need. They are walking the walk.
Pastor Selena added we all are broken in some form. But we can walk in victory if we are walking with the Lord. Continuing, Pastor Selena stated there is 50% divorce rate in marriages today. The church hasn’t always supported divorce. However, upon closer review in Malachi 2:15-16, we find that God hates divorce – the act of divorce and not the people in the divorce.
From my personal church attendance history, I have attended a variety of Christian denominations. Some were ok with divorce and some adamantly opposed the divorce and future marriage unless the other spouse had died. I am so glad I attend a church who believes marriage is to BE a lifelong commitment, but WE must look at all people with compassion. Lifelong commitment is important BUT at the expense of people feeling broken and families being broken apart and the chain of divorce being a pattern for younger generations to follow? Matthew 19:8-9 discusses when a partner has been sexually unfaithful. 1 Cor. 7:15 talks about what happens when the spouse is not a Christian or would walk out of a marriage. The Church of the Nazarene does not write of those who have been unfaithful or who had an unfaithful spouse. The church does not write off those who walk away from a marriage. The church is bound to look at “all things”, Romans 8:28. Getting right with God is all about asking for forgiveness. With extensive interviews, the Church of the Nazarene will ordain people who have gone through divorce. It is God working through the church that can heal and restore.
“All to Jesus I surrender, all to him I freely give. “Healing though Jesus is to surrender it all.
****I have so appreciated the candor and honestly of all the couples who I had the privilege to hear speak on their marriages.
Selena Freeman - March 8, 2020
For Better Or Worse | Til Death Do Us Part
From Series: "All Messages"
Payree considers herself a bit of a random person who is full of life experiences. She is a
retired teacher who helped deliver a baby on her 50th birthday. She loves God, her family,
friends, music, writing, and smiling.