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Finding Restoration When Love is Gone (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
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January 13, 2021 5:00 am

Finding Restoration When Love is Gone (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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January 13, 2021 5:00 am

Dr. David Clarke offers practical advice and hope to the person whose spouse has communicated, "I don't love you anymore." (Part 2 of 2) (Original air date: July 22, 2015)

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But you should never chase bank and plead because that's just legitimizes what they're doing yet is your fault you're trying hard on for with you.

You gotta actually push back and say no your sending.

Of course they have. We have marriage issues, you say, but those can all be fixed. We both know Jesus. Don't wait let's of tough love perspective from Dr. David Clark about how you should respond if your spouse says word on it over. Dr. Clark is back with us today on Focus on the Family in your house to spokes presidents and Dr. Jim Daly, thanks for joining us on John phone John. We shared a powerful conversation last time with Dr. Clark and I'm certain we confronted a lot of husbands and wives in that process because it's easy sometimes to take our relationships for granted. I really appreciate David's no-nonsense approach of speaking the truth God's truth in a culture where a lot of people don't want anyone holding them accountable but we in the Christian community can afford to live that way because people outside the faith are watching our marriages and our families to see if what we claim to believe is really true. That's why it's critical that we keep our relationship strong and healthy. And if you're struggling in that regard I get the help you need before your marriage gets to the breaking point. That's why Focus on the Family is here to help strengthen and rescue hurting couples we have our counseling team and hope restored where we provide intensive counseling over several days for those who are ready to give up. Giving up is not what God wants for your marriage. Contact us today for the help you need to get on a better path and her number is 800-232-6459 call to set up an appointment with one of her counselors or ask for information about hope restored again. It's 800 K in the word family were stop by the episode notes for more if you missed our conversation last time with Dr. Clark. You can order an audio copy of that when you get in touch and now here's said Jim how you began part two of our conversation with Dr. David Clark on Focus on the Family your book what to do when your spouse says I don't love you anymore is blunt. It is really good in that respect. And it's a caution sign, you know, we have those highway signs. I think your book is very much like that for married couples to better understand how to communicate together to prevent the enemy of our soul from taking us down, which is what he's doing and wanted to do each and every day and it seems right now that we are weak in that area and unwilling to do the hard work that we need to do to make sure that were more the testimony, not a oh yeah, that happens them to the Christian church kind of couple of so thanks for that. Since last time that we need to work at our marriages and do a better job. We ended last time I asked you a question about that woman who feels guilty that maybe her husband is done this and what role did I play into it, it does raise a question for me in terms of a woman's self-esteem and self-worth and I know the shoe can be on either foot here and I don't mean to gender rise this, but typically still today it's men that have affairs and their hurt. Wives, not always.

I get that but talk about what's going on in a woman's heart that complex person. We laugh about it. We talk about men from Mars and women from Venus and noodles and spaghetti and waffles and all the different ways we can describe how genders react, but that sensitive heart and the woman what is going on with her sense of self-worth in this moment when she's no longer being the one that her husband says your mind is just be on devastating women are so sensitive in this area. I'm fat, I'm not attracted you anymore unattractive to anyone anymore, and I'm not a good housekeeper and I guess I'm not a good mom and she goes across the board, trying to find out how could this have happened and she thinks it's because of her.

That's not true. Let's get this every trauma she's ever experienced in her life at that very moment comes rushing in. So it's even more devastating. My dad neglected me did the guy was that pretty and preferred my sister had a boyfriend that rejected me had my previous husband who could dump me what ever is happened in her life. Everything psychologically with this trauma comes in, so she got the whole ball of the breaking of the dam, not just bringing illegal uses Hoover dam just splitting open he's done that to her with that one sentence and so she is desperate to somehow the most natural response is okay. It is me that some control. I can have. I can hold off. Maybe the other parts of self-esteem and if I can really win him back by chasing him. All this can go away not truly make it worse because he's done with you. You could be the best wife on earth the next month and will make no difference to him because he's through with you.

His heart is turned off and he's got someone else shoved in there who doesn't belong there, so any attempt to win him back is wrong and actually on biblical and you're not confronting us. And when that couple has broken their relationship.

For all these reasons that were talking about. What is that man can find in the next relationship absolute disaster misery. Here's the Iran I will tell these guys this, but they don't get it. They think it's can be so much better and also it will be buddy for about 4 to 5 months. That's all you're gonna get maybe a year at the outsides you and her against the world and your kids hate you, and you've hurt your wife and you can go to church all the way to that's gonna crush you in her and you to be separate from God because he will never bless this relationship, it's out of his nature to do so you can have that major problem in the guy looks at me like I got three heads. Also, I talked with thousand guys just like you and the thousand out of the thousand. That's what happened. Still don't believe it. So all the books out there Christian books you talk about being happy and someone rationalizes in this instance with this set of circumstances, infidelity, hey you know what God wants me to be happy. That's a common one very you say that person that says that my Bible at which I keep my eyes.

I'm sorry. Show me in the Bible where God wants you to be happy they can't show me further meet readme Malachi 216.

That's as clear as a bell low, but I'm trying to get the message across. You not to be the exception to sinning and getting away with it.

No one does. And I tried and I'm tough enough that I I'm hoping to make the message clear, I'm banging him in the habit of also saying look, I'm trying to save you money. I want you to believe that save your life in many ways you're acting like the Old Testament character of Nathan when he confronts David Wright set that story up for some talk about why that worked. It was an incredible story, here's King David number one man, a man after God's own heart in that kingdom really could do no wrong and walk with God. He makes his terrible mistake with Bathsheba and it shows how crazy you can get in in an affair and his sexual sin. You will do things you would never dream of doing. He has Uriah killed to cover his sin again that's covering doing whatever you can and Nathan took his life in his own hands.

He had the guts God is looking for people, friends, family members, pastors, counselors to have the guts to stand up and say you're the man you're sending Nathan did it, and he could've been killed by David incident for offending the king right out in my throne. How dare you, but to David's credit in the course God's ultimately he was broken. Nathan tells a story of the sheep and all that bone just nailed in any respondent got restored and their consequences. We need more Nathan Sweeney a lot more night and we had a bunch of wimps out there that won't speak truth and Whitefield, namely officer husband is having an affair and she can't find anyone not anybody at her church that will stand up and say and do with her husband. That's disgraceful well do it and will try to find somebody else to do it. She's alone she needs only to support her so many friends would save themselves out. You know my friendship means a lot to me.

If I say that I may not have that friendship any longer.

Not that it sounds too simplistic to say it that way but and we may not even process it that way but that may go through our minds that is that our role is that our responsibility to save my friend. You seem to be out a lot without your husband what's going on. That's a real friend. The Bible talks about a friend that sticks closer than a brother and you speak truth.

My best friend. Rocky speaks truth to me in areas of my life and it's and it's really save me a lot of grief.

You get the guts to do it in the Bible is clear.

We don't we don't hear sermons on Matthew 18 because it's so uncomfortable we like to disabled Americans.

Before that point we were trying to do that and focus tries to do that. But there are times when it's broken apart and we need somebody to step forward in the Bible clearly states one or two witnesses.

That's a friend that someone who has the guts to on the behalf of the wife of the husband step up and confront the sinner in love we could choke out so many cents just across the board. Name the sin if we had accountability on a weekly basis and as needed a call in the middle of the night if you have to. When Satan is doing his thing. But we don't have that, because ultimately we want to sin. If I'm knocking to be accountable. What I'm saying is, in essence, I want to do these things because I know we know Satan does his best work in secret. But if I'm in a have a rocky know everything about me everything about me and my weaknesses change the whole game. Now I can stay out of that and I'm saying I don't want to sin and I wonder if you can just give me as a guy a couple of questions I can ask somebody if I feel like back that looks like a dangerous behavior is sinful behavior that is engaged in. Maybe not leading toward a divorce but maybe my friend is really doing some stupid things will how do I broach that subject with I would give them a little bit of a warning because guys don't like surprises, even if it's a good friend of yours and you'll you'll say I need to have a meeting with you. I'm concerned about some things in your life and I will have an honest conversation with you about that now if you resist that meeting.

Okay, now we know what question he's doing something wrong and were gonna have to show up and to surprise so to good test and a guy that that is not into something bad was willing to talk about.

Okay, that's good. Okay, let's meet, so he knows the agenda. It's not. Let's have a couple of pancakes and then are you sending you I would start that way you set up that way then the conversation is after some small talk, maybe, maybe, very little. I am concerned about you. You know I love you and I'm saying this at 11 concern as the Bible would have me do, and I've seen some things in your life that I'm concerned about, and men demand. This is just between the two of us. I want you to tell me the truth and I'll do whatever I can to help you I will. I will spend time with you will if you want me to go with you, your wife, your pastor, I'll do that. I'm a friend I'm at the dump and the load here and you want a relationship where you even say you know what I want to go both ways I'm confronting you, but you know what man I got my own issues. I got my own weaknesses some more done with you on what you asked me the same questions that's gutsy, that's a two-way street and it lightens the load on him because is like yeah I got issues to and if he'd responded that that's gonna be a deeper friendship and you can save and it could be short of serious sin that you and he can work things out with God. He may have to go to his wife and share something but you'll support a minute to that would be strong. Let me ask you, and your experience David it and laughing inside because I'm I'm reminded of a comedian who had a little skit on this and he talked about a couple that he knew in this skit that they were divorcing and he talked his wife and the letting go play golf with this man so he might talk to them about this divorce and so he goes away for four or five hours and the man comes home and the wife says, well, did you talk to is how he got a new club and never spent any time talking about the divorce and he turns that into a funny shtick, but that is kind of where a lot of this is men are at today. We never get around to the tough discussion women. It seems in their relational capability there, much better at sitting down and talking heart-to-heart that and I don't want to just say they're wired for it, but they seem more capable and competent in doing this, men struggle in that description of a conversation you just provided I don't think it happens very often in male relationships. It's yet. I spent four hours golf one with them, but his relation with his wife does never came up right and you let them make it, but Nathan made it come up it is gutsy and I once again citing male nature to get that deep but it's the requirement of Scripture. We have examples course throughout Scripture, every time. Sin happens in Scripture, it's to be confront is a lack of manliness are we missing is men today are we missing what it means to be a godly man because were not were jocular or more in that place of fun and entertainment superficial right and Satan with entertainment and sports and all the stuff that guys like to talk about he's winning because that's not what you should be talking about only in a guy just like telling John that you don't want to confront the guy because you don't want to be confronted. This is a two-way street at the got the guts to confront rocky but I have to let him confront me because guys admit was a what you're calling me on this. How about you exactly Sophia two-way street can make a huge difference at last time we talked a bit about rightfully that one of spouses in the situation they have sinned against God, and as they began to project that send to the spouse.

Well, she never did fill in the blank or she would not fill in the blank, and we begin to justify why I was in this affair because my needs were being met. Your saying that's on house and happen sends between you and God does things. Maybe backdrop items that need to be worked on.

But when you send this between you and God. And I think you hit that very forcefully last time, let's move to the next step.

I mean, let's say the couple wants to look for reconciliation and repair have you begin to work on those contributing factors together and talk about them honestly. Transition is tricky, but it can be done and it can be done when you really have healed net for space man's reports that he's had the affair is repentant.

He sorry we don't all the work that document the response document 5 to 6 conversations right, 5 to 6 months in we have really healed. Trust is being rebuilt. Now we make the segue to be very clear that they know what's coming is already told them that working to reach the point where you look at the marriage very hard when the wife has enough trust in you change I would ask you to do that until she knows you're a different man Euronext Billy Graham. You are growing you are solid you are on track. Now she can trust with more personal things.

Now we can look at the marriage and so what we do is a first assignment is always a number start looking your marriage. This is to do the affair you're still working on that mop up operation as you need to, but the whole different area and now is your marriage. I want you to bring the homework is, what have each of you done in your marriage partner Masons that has been your responsibility. That is really cause problems in his marriage and we all have a list guy has a list and now the wife was the victim. Now she has a list but you can do that now because she's healed and and she knows that the marriage wasn't where it would need to be fine and now she can ask you do that work. So we start going down that path.

What does that typically look like in your counseling practice. What are the more normal things that are wife who is in that situation is made it through committed to her husband. One of those things that she would need to work on very commonly she will admit you know what I have focused too much on the kids you know I I'm I was in a mom before an amendment and I spent too much time with the kids and they really come before you. It could be her career.

I've really gotten involved in my career and I'm trying to please people. It would teacher the other day, a female teacher, wonderful teacher and she's going way too far. She is absolutely teachings a huge job and she's doing more than she needs to. She needs to admit what that my career is too important. She may have to admit I've not been as affectionate with you have not respected you as a husband I don't praise you, and I think I'm crazy about you. I'm doing sex is a duty, all that would be very classic things that she needs to own and begin to change. But you're saying absolutely that should never be a rationalization for the husband right to send a sin right because of on that woman and I participated in your affair, and I'm partly to blame than the rest of my life with you. If I stay with you. I would have to one of them good enough today. If I'm good enough this week that's got nothing to do with it.

David is you at last time and this time again. Talk about that point at which a man if he's in the perpetrator position here. He's the one that is because the infidelity etc. the importance of repentance apply that more broadly, spiritually speaking, what is in the human psychology in the spirit of the human being what is going on with repentance and why do some spouses get it, and they want to change and they say okay I'm in and then others continue a façade. What is the difference there.

What is true repentance look like. Ultimately it's between you and God. That's what all comes down to.

Yes, I've damage my wife terribly.

But that isn't even the primary thing I've heard God himself was sent Christ to die for me.

All my sins. I'm thumbing my nose at him and say I don't want a relationship with you. I'm choosing the world and what hit it has to offer true repentance is I get it, and I'm very aware how could I have done this to my Savior Jesus Christ. To my to the God who created me, who's given me all these good things, and if you get that and that typically leads to brokenness, but if you don't want to get that in your gonna say you know what God really is and that important, and there's a better way.

That's what you're saying God's way is not the best way I would do it my way and God's disappointed me and is not been in no blame God when they really get honest. They're blaming God for their sin. Let's move again pass that point where the friction ended the big sin is happen. The recoveries occurred 5 to 6 months down the road. They're working on their own issues. The marriage is doing pretty good. There's more trust, but how does that offended spouse not fall back into the how can you work so late tonight.

What was that phone call about how does she or he rebuild the trust that's been broken even over a year or two years or five years.

How do they really ever trust again. Boy, good question.

What I have to have that lady doing a Massey have both of them do it as part of the marriage work. In the second phase, Jim, and that is she has to look at all the things prior to marrying this man that are now the transfer and cause or not to trust Satan can use every one of those. My dad neglected me. My dad abuse meet the neighbor boy touched me inappropriately. I've been disappointed in these other relationships are never healed from those all that now and signal Kahnawake guilt who have exploded first but if you heal it goes underground. I was in a way because he smart until you're starting to heal, and it was in a hitter with that so and the guile think you'll never forgive me. All that stuff has to be dealt with how we do it together. The husband's gonna be your main support.

The one the hurts of the worst is that was gonna help you through these personal issues and your to help them through yours and that's a huge part of the process. What do you teacher to do a. How does she bite her tongue if she has a concern. What practically speaking, do you help her do differently other than working on her own issues with her husband. She needs to see that Satan's lie. He's the father applies he is lying to her by trying to confuse her and she needs to see it that way I'll have exit right now right on the line what is Satan telling you what's coming in your head and what's the truth, and this is the husband Simon around to thinking all these things, and as soon as you can talk to your husband and bring that out and I think always need to be shared, but in the context of I went through a hard time today. I am trying to trust you. But here's what happened, and together they pray about that strong whatever secret I battle.

This I think I know the truth, he just reinforces that honey, I want to always come to me and I can explain why was late from work and so you have the discussion, but it's brief and then you move on. If you have a serial abuser. In that regard.

The wife is tried valiantly to save the marriage machine knows God says he hates divorce if it is perpetual and sporadic improvement is that a better situation in terms of her making that final decision to say you're not maturing you're not growing. I've gotta say it's over you yet. That's really God speaking to her and I never recommend divorce but I will say I'll goes for separation. Clearly this is the case you need to leave him and I say let God be your guide. There is a biblical reason here and based on his behavior of not turning from his sin relapse after relapse bad attitude okay you know you talk to your pastor. Make it a matter print. I believe God will release that if it got himself, but he will find a way to release you, and it's based on, yet his continuing sin it and so in that case, it means there needs to be a reasonableness to the situation and to make sure that you are pursuing God's will and that right. I like that idea of separation, not divorce is the ultimate goal right and that that's really his last chance you guys in on you for giving him every possible opportunity while protecting your own heart, but now wouldn't have to go to the next level and I have to train some of these ladies. They may not be ready to leave.

Well, let's get you ready, emotionally, financially, get a job, get training to rebuild your life as this kind of a dirt ball and I say dirt ball because he is now proven to be a dirt ball is in a cut you financially squeeze you quite a character assassinate you so you gotta get ready for all that and be strong and tough enough that will disconfirm a curse, if not a work which of these guys are so nasty to protect themselves LC things like will she's really crazy you don't see this church. I live with her and she's cricket slice to ruin her reputation to protect himself and there were guys are smooth enough and good enough. The narcissist of this world they can get away with it, but I want the wife to know you prepared for that.

You're in a move on. And again, I'll say it and it I'm sorry to keep saying this, but the shoe is on both feet.

In other words, the women do this to men. Men do this to women in this modern culture and and that the percentage of women having affairs is rising is not going to write that you say that most marriages fail not because of adultery.

While that's a predictor, but because couples fail to do the very hard work of healing and living a biblical marriage as we wrap up right now.

Take a minute and to end on a high note really on the biblical note and give us your best argument for why all this work and pain is worth it like to tell you 100 stories.

I'm thinking of one right now the couple that as that is gone through the process and is right now. At the end and it's a wonderful story of redemption and they we had all the high points. He is the godly young man, he made a mistake. He slept with somebody at work.

His wife was devastated. She had a difficult past all that filtered and they've gone through the steps and right now they have a better marriage than they ever had before the close there intimately of honesty. Everything is clicking God's at the center and so that's what I'm talking about. That's what can happen with God's help a wonderful story. Who gets the glory.

God does he. They worked hard. We all worked hard. But God did.

That's beautiful. It's when it works and it takes our participation not fairy dust are hard-working, say, God, we want to honor you and that there is an enemy of our soul to recognize that Dr. David Clark, author the book what to do when your spouse says I don't love you.

Thanks so much for you.

What a wonderful way. In that conversation with hope and that really is our bottom line message today. There is hope for your marriage, even if you don't feel it in here Focus on the Family we'd like to help you in what ever way we can we mention our hope restore program several times these past two days. Hope restored is a counseling retreat that's designed to help your marriage survive and thrive through intensive counseling over several days hurting couples learn how to love each other again, really, how to communicate with each other and put God at the center of their relationship and we have a 99% satisfaction rating for those couples who've gone through. Hope restored, those are pretty good odds and we encourage you to check it out if you need to talk to someone right away.

Let us put you in touch with one of our Christian counselors they are available to talk with you. Pray with you and get you on the right path to heal your relationship and the number to call for every one of these resources and so much more is 800 232-645-9800 the letter a in the word family or check the episode notes for more details and if their relationship with your spouse is in a good place. Let me invite you to join our marriage rescue team. We need financial partners like you to support broadcasts like this one, and provide the counseling websites and other resources like Hope restored, that we describe if you can make a monthly pledge to Focus on the Family, you'll help rescue hurting marriages all year long. Imagine how many more families we can save and strengthen when we work together so can we count on your generous support. Today I hope so donate by clicking the link in the episode notes or when you call 800 letter a word family behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team.

Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family I'm John Fuller inviting you back next time. As we once more help you and your family thrive in Christ

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