To the children of divorced families: My life is proof there is hope
Ong Ai Li // February 27, 2018, 2:42 pm
In 1989, my parents’ tumultuous divorce proceedings began, and so did my fears and insecurities. What was going to happen to our family? What was going to happen to me?
The years leading to my parents’ divorce still remain the lowest point in my life.
It was at this low point in my life that I started dating someone who had just became a Christian.
He introduced me to two Christian ladies who helped me understand what the Bible says about life, about God, about Jesus and about hope for the future. I learned about God’s love and his purposes for me.
So at the age of 20, I entrusted my uncertain future to the God who created me. I believed He sent Jesus to bring me back to Himself. I was extremely blessed to be followed up by the NUS Navigators. To this day, I am grateful for the grounding I received in God’s Word from day one.
One of the first things I received from God as a new believer was the grace to forgive my parents. After my conversion, I began a six-year journey towards full forgiveness. This was, undoubtedly, a major milestone in my life. I learned about obeying God. I learned about forgiving from my heart. And so began my prayers for my parents’ salvation.
After many, many years of praying, I had the unspeakable joy of seeing my parents come to know Christ – my mother in 2009 and my father in 2014. Today, they are not only reconciled to God but also to each other. They no longer have any more animosity towards each other.
In December 2015, in a very unexpected way, an opportunity arose for us to take a family photo at a relative’s wedding. It was almost like a full family portrait with three generations standing together as one.
Ever since my parents divorced, I never imagined there would be such a day. I will treasure this photo for the rest of my life. That moment was immeasurably more than all I ask or imagine. Thanks be to God for such a treasured moment. That’s the love of God.
I also eventually walked down the aisle and married my boyfriend of six years. We were happy to say our vows then and even happier to keep them now. This year, we will celebrate our 23rd anniversary.
I could have gone looking for love in the wrong places, for the wrong reasons and from the wrong person.
I cherish our like-mindedness in values and purpose in life. I also cherish the opportunities we have to serve God together. I will say, unabashedly, that I really do enjoy being married. Even though there is no “happily ever after”, marriage has been for me a great blessing.
I am thankful to be able to experience such a measure of increasing joy during the few days of life God has given me. In the words of one author, “The only thing more romantic than newlyweds is oldly weds.”
My husband and I may be “oldly weds”, but we continue to love God and pledge our love to each other, to have and to hold, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health – all the remaining days of our lives.
It is our hearts’ prayer that all our three children will marry godly spouses and bring forth godly offspring, with one generation telling the next of the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord.
Being born out of wedlock and deeply scarred by my parents’ rocky marriage and eventual divorce, I was clueless as to how a strong marriage looked like. I could have gone looking for love in the wrong places, for the wrong reasons and from the wrong person.
But I did not. Because of God’s love.
Because of God’s love, I am not an emotional wreck.
Because of God’s love, I did not go astray in my brokenness.
Because of God’s love, I am living the abundant, eternal life which Christ died to give me.
This is a submission from a participant of our Greater Love Giveaway. From now till the end of March 2018, we are giving away a pack of limited edition Thir.st “Greater Love” Stickers in exchange for every story. Stories must have a personal/local angle and be of 800-1000 words. Send us yours here.