Through the Lens of Grace: A New Glass Jar

In the early days of healing our marriage, our counselor encouraged us both to write a “love letter” to each other. Neither one of us are really the “romantic-type” but we wrote each other a letter. I debated whether I wanted to share my letter here, and in the end, I decided why not? This is real life, folks. We are not the only couple this has ever happened to.

There was a day when I couldn’t have ever imagined rebuilding a marriage with a man who had violated our marriage vows. I remember in high school talking with friends and saying things like “If that ever happens to me…it’s over!”

I think I just thought the damage would be irrevocable and there would be no way possible that I could even think of living like that.

Nearly two decades since my high school days, and I’ve not only walked that journey but I’ve had the privilege of seeing God mend my marriage from nothing to something that was missing and I didn’t even know it prior to January 22nd.

There came a time when I had to chose to love Dave and move forward with rebuilding our marriage. He was showing me in his actions that God had changed his heart and as a result, his behaviors and choices had changed as well.

February 9th, 2014, I wrote this letter to Dave. It was my offering of forgiveness and my way of saying I wanted to do my part in working towards reconciling our marriage.

Dear Dave,

When I would think about what I wanted to say in this letter, I knew it would be very hard to write about our relationship as I knew it before January 22nd, 2014. It is hard for me to even think about life, and our marriage, pre-January 22nd because everything that I thought we were then was swept away when truth came to light on the night of the 22nd. It has left me confused, hurt, and it has essentially taken whatever we ha and made it into nothing. 

The only thing I really have to go on is what I believe and what I know to be true about our marriage. I believe God orchestrated our meeting on that day in January 2006 so that we would be lifelong partners in this life. I believe He intended for us to have a marriage that reflects what He designed marriage to be. I believe God gave you to me to love and respect you as God designed for wives to do. I agreed to marry you because I love you, and I still do. I’m just confused about who YOU really are in light of all that has taken place over the past 5 years. Our marriage has sadly all but crumbled beneath us and whatever we had prior to January 22nd is left in ashes. 

I realize this doesn’t sound very much like a love letter. I realize it’s been pretty depressing to read this far. 

You have stated both with written and verbal words that you desire reconciliation in our marriage. Your actions, so far, state the same. I have expressed both in written and verbal words my desire to extend to you forgiveness because God first forgave me of every sin I would ever commit.

As Pastor said, the jar of my trust in you was not only completely withdrawn of marbles on January 22nd, it was crushed to smithereens. There is no more jar.

Today, I want to offer you a new jar. Yes, it is an empty jar because you will have to work very hard to rebuild the trust that was shattered. 

But I am willing to be pursued by you and I am willing to let myself fall in love with you all over again. And I am hopeful that at some point in this journey, we will realize that we have put forth the effort, made the necessary changes and, by God’s grace and redemption, we have been blessed with a marriage that many desire but few get to truly experience. 

It’s a huge risk when I look at the ashes that have been left in the aftermath of January 22nd, but here I am. Ready to step out in faith with you and my God who has promised to never leave me and never forsake me. 

I love you,

Elaine

I did actually place an empty glass jar in Dave’s hands that day. He keeps it, along with my letter, in his dresser.

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