The views expressed below are those of the writer and may not reflect the views of Rejoice Marriage Ministries or the Steinkamps.
Men, has the Lord placed a devotional on your heart that you would like to share with other standers?
For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:14-21
I have been working with standers like you since 1995. It thrills my heart to see the Lord working in the hearts and lives of faithful men and women standing for the healing of their marriages. Most often standers attribute their perseverance to the belief that “God is able!” God is working mightily in their lives, overcoming incredible circumstances for the glory of His Kingdom. I pray that you too will experience the awesome peace and healing of God in your situation.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30
My involvement with Rejoice Marriage Ministries grew out of my need for support during my walk through the dark valley of divorce. I could not find support in my stand for the healing of my marriage. In fact, I was criticized for wanting my marriage healed, even by people in the church. Family and friends called me “crazy” for wanting to have a broken marriage healed. Thankfully, God led me to Bob and Charlyne Steinkamp and Rejoice Marriage Ministries. Out of their painful experience of divorce and God’s healing grace, they dedicated their lives to helping others on their journey through marriage difficulties and divorce.
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11
As Bob and Charlyne fed me through the Word of God, I decided to encourage others with the same encouragement that I had received. I cannot over emphasize the importance of getting support from likeminded people in the stand for the healing of your marriage. Although it is possible to travel this journey alone, it helps tremendously to receive encouragement from individuals who have experienced God’s healing in their marriages.
Many in the church today do not support individuals standing for their marriage. Rather, they say, “Get on with your life” or “God doesn’t want you to be unhappy” or “God has someone else in mind for you.” Frankly, these well-meaning folks are misguided in their efforts to encourage the stander. Yes, God does want you to be happy, but the only path to true happiness is walking in obedience to His commands. God wants your marriage to be a living example of Christ’s love for the Church, an unbreakable bond of love and fidelity. Dead marriages are Satan’s ploy to convince an unbelieving world that God really doesn’t love you or care for you. THAT IS A LIE! Do not fall for the deception. Trust in God and watch His miracle working power transform your dead marriage, giving it new and vibrant life.
God has sent you to this ministry because we have relied on God to fight the good fight and win the battle for our homes and families. We have been obedient to our marriage vows and God blessed us with healed marriages. Both Charlyne and I lost our spouses to death after our marriages were restored; 23 years for Charlyne and only two years for myself. We believe so strongly in this work that we continue to minister to standers in need. No one knows your struggles and pain better than someone who has walked the same path and tasted the sweet victory of a restored marriage.
But encourage one another daily as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first. As has just been said: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your heart.” Hebrews 3:13-15
The one thing that helped me the most during my stand for my marriage was helping others in their difficulties. The Lord uses the difficulties in our lives for His ultimate good (Romans 8:28). I often receive far more than I give when helping those with similar issues.
In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
Where do you receive help as you fight to save your marriage? My help came from daily scripture reading. Allow God’s Word to speak to you concerning your situation. He has much to tell you. Spend time with Him, listening for His still small voice.
I lift up my eyes to the hills–where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of Heaven and Earth. Psalm 121:1-2
I sowed many tears during the time apart from my wife and family. I reaped many joys when my family was finally restored. Do not give up on your stand. Many blessing are in store for you!
I love the Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live. Psalm 116:1-2
Cooperate with the work the Lord is doing in your family. Do not lose hope. Be encouraged to know that we have walked the road that you must walk. We know the dark valley that envelopes you. Be assured that God is able and joy comes after the darkness.
Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. Psalm 126:5
May God fill you with His joy and bring wholeness to your marriage and family through His saving grace.
Peace to you, my dear brother in the faith.