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Your husband's addiction to pornography has just been discovered. The aftermath of this betrayal leaves every precious memory grimy and tainted. You muse back on your wedding night. Was he thinking of some porn star as he touched you? When you were working to conceive a baby together by night, what had he been conceiving with his computer monitor by day?

Your dreams are shattered. You despise him for how his sexual addiction makes you see him, and you're panicked by how it makes you see yourself.

You're tempted to think, I knew he never had eyes only for me, but I never dreamed it could go this far. I feel so ugly now. And when he isn't quick to repent, who can blame you when you icily sneer, "Just get lost with that cuddly computer of yours and have fun."

Head spinning, heart breaking, you cry in desperate prayer: "Can I ever trust my husband again? My whole marriage is a mirage! Where are You, Lord?"

God is right beside you. Sure, it may appear that He has taken His hand off of your marriage, but your husband's sin has been in God's sights for some time—a sin that has been washing out your spiritual protection and threatening to flood your children's lives with generational sin—in spite of how well your husband's been hiding the evidence. But now God's blown your husband's cover, a sure sign of God's active role in your marriage.

God wants you to take an active role, too, and the first step in rebuilding trust with your husband is to trust God enough to find His heart for your husband in this mess. God wants restoration.

God's Heart for Men Who Struggle 

Recently, my husband, Fred, and I knelt in intercession as he prepared to challenge a large group of pastors to deeper sexual purity. Without warning, Fred suddenly broke into deep sobs. Moments later, he walked out and spoke with a grace and power I had never seen in him before.

Later, he recounted, "I wasn't sure I had the right attitude, so I prayed, 'Lord, I want Your heart as I speak to these men today. As many as half of these guys have been checking out the porn, and You know how that frustrates me to no end. But Lord, I don't want to speak out of my feelings. Can You let me feel Your feelings toward them today?'

"Instantly, the Lord laid His emotions inside my chest. I burst into tears and felt as though my heart would explode. Then, about three minutes later, it stopped as quickly as it began. Quietly, the Lord whispered, 'There. Now you know how I ache for My cherished pastors, in spite of their sin. Speak to them from that aching place in My heart.'"

God wants you to minister to your husband in that same grace and power, and He can give you His heart for your husband as easily as He gave Fred His heart for the pastors. God wants His heart reigning inside of you, enabling you to see beyond your husband's sin and into the brokenness behind it all.

I speak from personal experience. Even when Fred's temper and sexual sin were ripping up our home, I could see value in him beyond his sin. He had put me first in so many ways in our relationship, and it made me willing to want to go an extra mile for him.

I could also see the dysfunctional pain and confusion still trailing him from his broken childhood home. I saw that he had never had one completely faithful person in his entire life. I decided to become that first person.

There was another reason I chose restoration over divorce. God loves restoration for the same reason He hates divorce: the children. He knows how hard it is to raise godly children in the wake of divorce, and He knows that the message of salvation passes down to them most easily when the parents are one.

Speaking of husbands and wives through His prophet Malachi, God says: "Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they're His. And why one? Because He was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth. 'I hate divorce,' says the Lord God" (Mal. 2:15-16, NIV).

In light of all this, I knew I had no right to think of myself first in our marital troubles. I had to think of the kids before I thought of myself and, so, I had to see Fred and the marriage before myself, too. The same is true for you.

Granted, your marriage may now be in shambles, and what lies ahead might even be worse. But God's call on your life still remains—to build a marriage that pictures Christ's relationship to the church.

Is Divorce Ever an Option?

Obviously, some men will never soften. When is the damage from his sexual sin irreparable? Is divorce ever an option?

Sure it is. Adultery always makes divorce an option, and if your husband will not repent and refuses to turn from an ongoing, regular porn habit, he is an adulterer.

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