What To Do When You’re Thinking About Getting a Divorce

Posted on Friday, February 10, 2023 by K-LOVE Pastors

What To Do When You

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. – James 1:5 NLT


As a pastor, there’s not a week that goes by where I’m not talking to a husband, wife, or couple who are having severe issues in their marriage and contemplating divorce.

Some problems seem so deep and have gone on for so long that a spouse may feel ending the marriage is the only way to relieve the pain in their relationship.

In today’s verse, the Apostle James wrote to early Jewish Christians experiencing trials in their life and faith. He encouraged them not to try to solve their problems with their own wisdom or to do what the world says they should do. Instead, he challenged them to take their situation to their Savior and to allow Him to give them the guidance they needed.

So are you thinking of getting a divorce? Do the troubles in your marriage feel so insurmountable that divorce seems like the only way out? Here are a few suggestions to help you as you contemplate whether to get a divorce:


1. Don’t rush into a decision.

When we’re in pain, our instinct is to do whatever it takes to relieve the pain as soon as possible. The problem with making a knee-jerk decision in your marriage is that, often, our instincts aren’t the best in a moment of relational hurt. Craig Groeschel once said, “When emotions are high, wisdom is low.”


2. Understand what God says about divorce.

The Bible tells us God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16). However, there are times when God makes allowance for it:

– In the case of adultery (Matthew 5:32)

– Abandonment by an unbeliever (1 Corinthians 5:17)

That doesn’t mean you should divorce in these cases, but you’re allowed to divorce if these things don’t turn around in the long run. However, I believe God wants you to do everything possible to heal your marriage.


3. Meet with a pastor or Christian counselor for guidance.

Proverbs 19:20a says, “Get all the advice and instruction you can, so you will be wise….” Pastors and counselors can be great sounding boards for the problems in your life and marriage. Many times, God will give you the word you need through counseling. Ask your spouse if they’ll go with you to counseling but go and get the help you need even if they won’t.


4. Do what you can to rebuild your marriage.

Before you call it quits on your marriage, make sure you’ve done everything you can do on your end to pour into your relationship. Do for your spouse what you wish they would do for you. Trust God to work through your acts of kindness even when it seems your spouse couldn’t care less. Be wise in your approach and set boundaries with your spouse if the situation becomes unsafe.


5. Seek Jesus daily and practice self-care.

Jesus said in Matthew 11:28b, “…Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Don’t try to do this on your own strength. Lean on Christ. Look to Him daily for guidance and strength. Get into a good church and reach out to family and friends for support. Take good care of yourself and know that, whatever happens, God can help you through this (Isaiah 43:2).


6. If you do get divorced, make sure to guard your heart.

In the event of a divorce, it’s crucial to make sure you don’t allow bitterness to grow in your heart (Ephesians 4:31-32). Whether you’re the person initiating the divorce or not, ending a marriage is painful. If you find yourself in that difficult position, give yourself time to grieve the pain and loss you’re experiencing. Then, pour out your heart to God. Regularly set aside space to process what happened to your marriage, identify your takeaways, and lay down any anger in your heart towards your ex-spouse. Hating them will only end up hurting you and those around you. Please don’t give them that power over your life. Don’t let what happened to you define you; don’t let your pain turn you into someone you are not.


Dig Deeper

1. How have you seen divorce impact the life of someone you know? What do you think the impact of getting a divorce would have on you and your family?

2. Who are wise, godly people in your life and community that you can reach out to for guidance this week? What action can you take today to do for your spouse what you wish they would do for you?


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