PART 1: The Week Before the Bomb Dropped in My Marriage

BY: Deana Bell, Director, Restored Marriage
This blog was written six months after my husband, and I separated in 2012. It describes what some of you may have already heard me talk about: God was working on our restoration even before our separation occurred. Pay special attention to how the Lord spoke to me; how He encouraged me; how He was preparing me for what was about to happen. He knew all of it, all along. Remember that at the six-month mark, my husband and I still lived apart at the time of writing this. I didn't know what the end to my story would be, and neither did my husband. I had to make a choice - believe in what the Lord was saying to me or believe what the world was saying about my marriage. The world said, "It's over." The Lord said, "It's only just begun."
As you read, remember back to the week before your separation day. I bet the Lord was speaking to you, too. I bet that the Lord was preparing you, even though you might not have realized it at the time. Look for what He DID DO in advance. I'm not unique or special. What God did for me, even though I had no clue what was about to happen, He probably did for you as well.
Here's what I wrote: 
"Koji was away the week of January 16th, 2012, the week before our birthdays. During that week, we fought several times on the phone. I wanted to plan for our birthdays, and he resisted all attempts to plan anything. He said at one point during the week that he was "waiting for a sign" for what he should do about us. He further explained that all of the "signs" he had been getting were NOT in our/my favor. In the days before he was expected home, I prayed that he would get that "sign" from GOD and that it WOULD be in our favor.
On Sunday, God provided me with a list of people I needed to forgive. My birth mother, Karen, was at the top. The list ended with me needing to forgive myself. God explained that by not forgiving myself, I was holding back all of my potential. My response? "Dear Heavenly Father, I want to forgive and be free."
On Monday, God confirmed that He had given Koji "the sign." To this day, I do not know what that sign was. I do believe, however, that God gave it to him. What Koji did with that, I may never know. Maybe God's confirmation to stay married scared him, and he rebelled. Maybe God's sign was that he SHOULD leave so that He could work on each of us separately. I don't believe that God would ever tell Koji to leave the marriage or not keep his covenant with me, but many times during the Old Testament, God DOES ask His followers to leave their families for reasons they do not understand at the time. (ex: Abraham, Moses)
On Thursday, January 19th, the day before Koji arrived home, God spoke to me. He told me that when I felt weary and rejected, I should read the words He had given me in my journal writings. He said, "Believe them. Repeat them." He said that those same words would help me feel strong and not weak. I asked God for a miracle, and the answer that He gave me was, "You are free now."
Not quite the response that I was expecting. But as we all know, God works in His ways, not ours."
So I looked back at the words God had given me. Here are some of the things:
  • Stop being a victim. You are not defined by what has happened in your past; you are instead defined by God's love and guiding Light.
  •  Relax.
  •  You do not need to please any earthly being. God is already pleased with you.
  •  You are confident.
  •  Your husband is His son, and he has strayed, but his heart loves God and knows what is right.
  •  You don't have to deal with your husband, God will.
  •  God is not angry with your husband; He wants him back.
  •  Your husband is fighting powerful forces.
  •  You should just love your husband, excuse it all, let it go...and JUST LOVE HIM at this time.
  •  POUR OUT THE LOVE on your husband. (This was repeated over and over in my head many times in the future. I even asked God to show me what he meant by that. More on that     later...)
  •  Your husband doesn't feel like anyone loves him. He's given up on his parents loving him the way he     needs to be loved, and you were the first one to show him what     unconditional love was. This is why he ultimately can't leave you.
  •  Your husband feels let down. He misses what you used to do for him.
  •  Your husband doesn't love anyone else. He has shut himself off from the world. He feels desperate.
  •  Your husband knows that he is supposed to be the Spiritual Leader of the family, and he feels strange letting you lead the way because he knows he is supposed to. God said,     "Teach him how to lead, then let him lead." You are leading now because you are the only one who can.
  •  Your husband is sad. He wants to cry. He doesn't want to lose you, but he's afraid he already has.
  •  Your husband doesn't believe that God will forgive him. Instead, he believes that God wants to punish him, but he couldn't be more wrong. Jesus died for his sins, every last one. Your husband has already been forgiven.
Deana is currently one of the Directors of Covenant Keepers, International. She graduated from the Dove School of Leadership through Chesapeake Bible College and received her Pastor's license in 2019. Previously she and her husband, Koji, served as the Mid-West Regional Directors of Covenant Keepers and as small group leaders in that area. She has a degree in Secondary Education as well as experience in counseling from a biblical standpoint. For the last 20 years, she has also served her family as a stay-at-home mom and homeschool teacher. Deana's marriage has been restored since 2013.
She is passionate about having a relationship with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. She has seen many miracles in her life as well as in the lives of the people around her. At her core, she is an encourager and disciple of Christ, spending most of her days ministering to people and digging into the Word. She also speaks at conferences, loves to write, and teach the Word of God. She and her family currently live and attend church in the Charlotte, NC area.
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