Have you ever been told you cheated on God? If you were, would you believe it? How is such a thing possible; who would do it?
I'm that girl, the girl who cheated on God. I cheated on God with another man; even though, he was the man I married. These were the words a pastor shared with me, after my husband left me, at the age of 24. The pastor spoke with me and my parents privately, gently, without malicious intent; however, how powerful the accusation of what I had done? Even if I hadn't been aware of my supposed sin, as it was happening, the accusation still stung, my stomach dropped, my mind and spirit reeled. I mean, if sins are rated, you can't possibly rate much higher on the ladder of detrimental sins than cheating on "The One" who is and always has been!
14 years prior, when I was 10, I had proclaimed to my family if I could go anywhere, to help anyone, I was going to Romania to work with orphans. My chance fell into my lap, and arrived at my door, when I was 20. I took the leap of faith and went where I believe God had been leading me all my life.
I had never been outside the U.S. and at 20 years old was filled with faith, optimism, hope, naivety, and love. I had never been kissed and never had any semblance of a boyfriend any time prior to this. During my days in Romania some were filled to the brim with activity, working with orphans in Bucharest, while others found me staying in due to civil unrest and people unhappy with Americans. On one of my housebound days, as I sat alone and began to speak out loud to God. I said, "God, You're enough. This is enough. I think I might be able to do this for the rest of my life. Just you and me." I was sincere, there were tears, and deep peace descended and filled my inner-most parts.
The next day, I was at a local restaurant on the same side of the street as the apartment where I was staying. Less than 500 feet outside of the apartment’s main door, I sat down with a young lady who was all of 14 and set about the business of treating her and myself to lunch when I spotted him: My future husband. When I saw him a voice in my head, that wasn't my own, said, "That's the man you will marry". It was later revealed to me that in the same moment my eyes met my future husband’s, and his eyes met mine, he too heard a voice say to him, "That's the woman you will marry". Something bigger was at work than just the two of us combined.
I had always believed the voice I heard was God. I had given my life privately to Jesus when I was 12, publicly when I was 15, and privately again at 20. I assumed He was honoring and blessing me with favor so sweet as to have finally found a man on earth my soul recognized as my own: My home.
After 4 years of marriage, and having moved with my husband to America, he left me for another woman. He had been leading a double life I knew nothing about. His leaving took me by surprise and caught me completely off guard. I turned to God, the church, and clung to my faith with all I had in me. Only to be told the devastating news that I had committed adultery against God! The only one who could forgive me.
Could it be, when I gave my life to Him, told God He was enough, I committed my life to Jesus Christ in such a way that my marriage on earth was one meant to fail? A marriage meant to fall apart and to be stripped away?
The voice my husband and I heard, separate and independent of each other, was that of the devil? The doubts felt so intensely, before my Romanian wedding day, sent from God?
Had our whole love story been interpreted incorrectly right from the beginning?
17 years later, soon to turn 41, I still don’t have answers. An argument could be made either way. Within life, we don’t receive all the knowledge that's within the universe to obtain. Some things are left a mystery meant to be deciphered in the heavenly realms when the grand tapestry of our lives revealed. The tapestry where we see divinity interwoven throughout each strand that was placed just so; not by our hands but by His own. This I know: We can’t stray so far from our Father that He won’t find us, rescue us within our weaknesses, and lend us His strength.
I have learned: If all is laid bare, where what you’ve held onto with all your strength slips through your grasp, your faith in God will be enough to see you through; “God, you’re enough.”