To Support, or Lead to Sin?

Normally I’m a person that’s quick to try to see the big picture of things. I don’t often get hung up on one particular bad period or bad situation because I know, deep down, that God’s up to something. People often comment about how lax I am about everything, and truthfully, that’s why. I see no point in getting worked up over things that, 1) I have no control over, and 2) Are probably being done for a very good reason well outside of my sphere of understanding.

I don’t know why, but it’s always come naturally to me. So when I say that, right now, I feel like I’m at my wit’s end, I want you to know exactly what I mean.

What do you do when your heart is breaking so badly for someone that you want nothing more than to support them, but supporting them would mean contradicting your faith in Christ?

My family life was never quite normal. My parents parted ways when I was 10, and have both since remarried. However, due to some serious issues from his past creeping back up on him, my dad was recently admitted to and released from a rehabilitation clinic. Although I was sad he fell so far to have to wind up in a place like that, I have never been prouder of him. Seeing him become man after God’s heart and God’s will has been one of the most encouraging things I’ve seen in my brief 26 years here. I am proud to call him my dad, and I love him with all my heart.

However, as far as he’s come, everything isn’t all peaches. Although I certainly don’t know all the details, I do know that his wife has had an incredibly hard time understanding and dealing with his addiction, and it’s really torn them apart over the past half year. And now, they’re facing a divorce.

If you aren’t familiar with what it’s like living with an addiction, think of it like a way to not deal with real life. Anytime you have to do something, have to make a decision, have to go to work, have to deal with people, or anything other than what you would do in paradise, your first instinct is to run to your addiction. Problems pile up quickly because they choose to ignore real life and indulge in a substance or behavior that gratifies them instantly and helps ease the stress and pain.

As you can imagine, overcoming a pattern like this takes an indescribable amount of self-discipline and immeasurable amount of support and patience from loved ones. So, with that in mind, I can easily see why their marriage is suffering.

I want my dad to continue to keep his life in order. He has come so far since last year. He has made new friends who share his struggle and support him. He attends meetings and talks to others regularly to continue learning. He’s even started reading the Bible and pursuing God, which is something I never thought I’d be able to share with my dad.

But, for whatever reason, he feels that his marriage is dragging him down instead of building him up. And with that in mind, I want nothing more than to support him and tell him to make every sacrifice he needs to in order to keep from falling back into the pit he’d fallen into last year.

But on the other hand, I’ve come to see God’s answer for marital issues is rarely, if ever, divorce. That’s not a topic I think I need to give much thought to, because it’s pretty clearly stated throughout the Bible.

What do I do? How do I encourage my dad to continue to seek God and keep his life in order when I don’t, at my core, support what he’s about to do? How can I say that I think he SHOULD get a divorce, even though I believe it’s not the right answer? Could I even justify urging a brother in Christ to something that I firmly believe is sinful if it meant preventing a multitude of future sins?

So, yea, any words of wisdom are sure welcome… *sigh*

4 Comments:

  1. Anonymous said...
    The Power of a Praying Husband and The Power of a Praying Wife (if she's a God follower) are fabulous books. I'm sorry you have to watch the pains and consequences of your father's addiction. I feel your heartbreak. Your job is to support and pray for him in his journey. I will pray for both of you. I have been there, and I know that at my lowest point, it was only prayer that brought me from the very dark places that the combination of addiction and a struggling marriage took me. I was one of the lucky ones. Just remember that even though God hates divorce, he doesn't hate his children who are divorced. That will be your father's decision. And God will grant him grace.
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