I want to share with you a sad testimony that I hope (and this woman hopes) will help others who read the “lessons” this woman shares. I will include a few comments in [brackets] that perhaps will help, as well.
Beatrice, from Kenya, wrote the following in the comments under the article, How We Found Forgiveness After an Affair:
I will tell you my story. It’s not men only who cheat, women also do cheat. I am one of those women and very ashamed of myself. If only I could turn back the hands of time, I would not have done the unthinkable to my husband.
I have been married close to 2 years and during those 2 years, I have caused my husband great emotional pain. I knew the man involved even before I got married and was sex chatting him since he was in the U.S. He had a gal friend. I didn’t take the chats seriously and told myself that I would stop the moment I got married to the love of my life. How wrong was I!
When he came back 2 years ago, I was already married and shamefully, I continued sex chatting with him. He got married a year ago and sadly, we still continued chatting and even met twice but we didn’t get physical, though we almost did.
This year his wife went through all the chats and pictures we were exchanging and hell broke loose! She told my husband and sent every picture to him and all my friends. Mind you, I was stupid enough to send him my naked photos!! Lust had engulfed us. In my very honest words, what was here was lust, no love, and no emotional connection. In fact, sometimes I would tell myself to have fun and get over it before London burns. I was wrong.
When my husband discovered everything, he was mad. He was heart broken and totally crushed. He could not imagine the woman he trusted so much could do a thing like this. I was so ashamed of myself, I could not stop shaking for a whole week wondering what will happen and cursing myself for doing what I did.
By God’s grace, my husband forgave me and wants our beautiful marriage to work. I have cut off all the communications with this man —the emails, the phone, etc. It has been over 4 months since and even though my husband has forgiven me and I have asked God to forgive me, this haunts me. Whether awake or asleep, my thoughts curse me. I wish I did things differently and had been honest with my husband. I would not have hurt him this way or broken his trust in me.
All those who have cheated, please, remember there is no fun outside your marriage. One day things are going to change and you will forever blame yourself. I am in that position now and I deeply regret everything I did. I don’t know when I am going to forgive myself. I am searching everywhere for answers but my heart is still shaking. I literally sunk my own boat.
I would not say anything more, but if you are planning to cheat, please, please, please, by the mercies of our Lord, DON’T!! You’re better talking with your partner about it or your feelings. [And if your spouse won’t interact with you in a way that is healthy, please don’t allow yourself to continue doing that which deep inside, you should know, is wrong.] I can’t start telling you how you might start regretting these kinds of actions like me. I can tell you… it’s an enormous regret.
We are young. We have small kids and see what I have done? You don’t want to go through the same path, do you? Take cover in the Lord. Ask him to help you deal with your feelings and talk with your spouse about everything [everything that you SHOULD talk to him or her about].
If you have been cheated on, may God give you the strength to forgive your partner. I know it’s hard and maybe I am not the right person to say it, but I believe the grace of the Lord is abundant.
To those we have cheated, may God forgive us and may we learn to love our partners and talk when there is a problem. And may we remember that when we were marrying them, we believed they were the best choice of life partners. Let us not abuse the integrity and the virtues of the marriage institute. Let us set good examples to our children and to the world. Let us avoid this unnecessary pain, guilt, shame and alienation. I have learned my lesson. Don’t wait to learn yours, just learn from me and learn from my experience. May the good Lord bless you.
To Beatrice’s comment, I replied (in part):
Thank you Beatrice, for allowing yourself to be openly vulnerable and share your story and your regrets. I pray with you that it will help to stop someone who is contemplating cheating on his or her marriage —including, sext texting ANYONE other than a spouse. All of this is wrong on so many levels.
I’m reminded of something one marriage expert (Diane Sollee) said, “What we really need is a time machine so that people entering into an affair could flash forward and see themselves, their kids, and their lives at the other end of their lust.” Sadly, you are seeing the pain these types of actions can bring about now and for the rest of your lives.
Prayerfully, you and your husband can somehow face it all, learn from it, give one another grace to process through this whole tangled mess and use what you’ve learned to build a stronger marriage than ever before. Please invite God to help you to unravel all of this with you. It’s God’s healing touch that can take such shattered pieces and use them for good beyond whatever could be possible, otherwise. May you be able to pass this message onto others to hopefully, prevent future pain for others who are tempted to go down the same sinful past. Thank God for His amazing forgiveness and grace!!!
…I pray that God will help you and your husband and will bless your family abundantly as you learn how to go forth in integrity and Truth, rather than deeds committed in secret darkness. I believe if you flirt with your husband (only)… love him as never before …follow God’s leading in this, you will be amazed at what God can do with all you are learning. Lord, may it be so as Beatrice and her husband follow your leading.
With Beatrice, I hope what is shared here will help someone. Unfortunately, as the Bible says, we are a “stiff-necked people” —those who want what we want and find ways to justify our actions as exceptions to the rule. We often won’t heed warnings. But even so, I feel compelled to share this with those who will pay attention.
A few additional thoughts come to mind:
• Don’t allow yourself to believe the lie that because you hurt so badly, solutions to cheat and do that which you should not, are acceptable.
• “Whenever God is knocked out, sin is minimized.” “When we do wrong, we set in motion a cycle of complications” (Chuck Swindoll).
This “cycle of complications” is what Beatrice is experiencing. But thankfully, her sin was exposed. As we’re told in Numbers 32:23, just as Moses told those who were sinning, “…You may be sure your sin will find you out.” God has a way of exposing our sin and then it must be dealt with out in public, bringing regrets on so many levels to those who are affected by the clutches of sin —doing that which we shouldn’t.
If you are in the midst of temptation take note of point one of the quote below. And then take note of point 2. If you have lived to learn the lie of point 1, then take note of point 2:
“Satan’s 2 greatest lies: 1. It won’t hurt —One time won’t hurt you. 2. God will never love you anymore —you’ve blown it!” (Neil Clark Anderson)
In the Bible, we’re warned to “Flee temptation.” That doesn’t mean that we stick our heads in the lion’s mouth and think that he won’t bite down. We’re fools to believe so. We’re to run as far from it as possible.
But if you didn’t and you are feeling the bite of your sinful behavior, keep in mind that God will forgive you. As we’re told in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
That doesn’t mean that you can go on sinning, thinking that eventually we can count on God’s grace and ask for forgiveness then. As the Apostle Paul stated, “May it never be so.” You are prostituting grace and there will be a price to pay for that, as well.
And if you stop right now, confess your sin, and do what you can to make things right again, please realize that there may still be consequences that you may have to pay. However, continuing to do what is wrong, will heap even more consequences on top of it all. And just like Beatrice’s children, those who are innocent are often all the more victimized by our sin, as well. You aren’t an island unto yourself. Right now is the time to stop.
This Christmas season (and throughout the year), we are being reminded of the grace that God extended to us through Jesus Christ. May we embrace that which He came to give us and live our lives accordingly. May we stop entertaining the enemy of our faith and instead live to please God —living in ways that He asks of us:
Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person —such a man is an idolater —has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them. For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. (Ephesians 5:1-10)
This article was written by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International.