Today I came across a message on Youtube titled "How to Recover After an Affair". I figured I would give it a listen and see what 4 or 5 steps they would outline to help me move on. But as I listened, I realized this was something different. This message brought to light some new perspectives for me that really helped me grasp the truth about my feelings and why the actions of my spouse impacted me the way they did.
The message was by Andre Butler from Word of Faith Christian Center in Detroit. If you marriage has been impacted in anyway by an affair, I encourage you to listen to the entire message here. There were many great takeaways for me.
First, God hates divorce but he hates infidelity even more. (Matthew 19:9) It is a broken covenant that causes great harm to your mate. It's a heinous crime that burns down everything in your life. (Job 31) An adulterer is anyone who receives sexual gratification from anyone other than their mate. There are multiple types of infidelity or cheating other than a physical affair. Infidelity includes pornography, dinners alone with the opposite sex, private conversations in person or via text, lusting after another person and emotional affairs.
Secondly, each person is responsible for their own heart. You don't just fall in love with someone else. You open your heart and allow yourself to be seduced by someone else. For your heart to be deceived you have spent some time with that other person. You have allowed yourself to become emotionally close to another person. You have crossed a line and formed an emotional bond with another person. (Job 31:9-12) You ignored the symptoms of pre-cheating. You put yourself in a dangerous place. You didn't set boundaries or you ignored the ones that were in place. Instead of choosing to live holy, you chose to play near the fire thinking that you had everything under control. You didn't take time to think how your actions would harm your mate or that you would ever get burnt.
And thirdly, infidelity causes a broken heart and a broken spirit. A broken heart is a powerful emotion that turns your world upside down. When you cheat on your mate it causes them great damage, heartbreak, betrayal, rejection, broken trust, jealousy, anger, and grief. It is the death of their marriage as they know it. It can take years for them to process these emotions and move to a place of healing.
Married men and women, I challenge you to guard your heart and your mind. Do not open your heart to anyone that is not your spouse. Set boundaries and don't cross them. You made a vow before God, to love, honor and cherish your mate. There are severe consequences when you break that vow and dishonor your marriage. (Hebrews 13:4)