By: Rich

My heart was broken. I cried for months. A little girl told me something that I never forgot...

I was 21 years of age and about to make the biggest decision of my life. I was involved in a 9-year relationship with a woman who did not quite believe as much as I did. In fact, I think she believed in God just enough to keep me believing that God was in control. I grew up in a dysfunctional, unstable home with three older siblings, all who wanted to be on their own. This 9-year relationship gave me the stability I longed for as a child.

With two sisters and one brother, all older than me, I always seemed  to catch the 'after-shock' of everything that took place in our lives. The large age gap between my brothers and sisters caused me to fair for myself and figure things out on my own. This forced sense of self-dependence later led to my adventurous personality and a desire for love and acceptance, causing me to leave early in the morning and not return until the late evening, searching for fulfillment.

I have always known that my parents loved me the best way they knew how, but there was still an emptiness that I was searching to fill. I had been raised in church and had been taught about God my entire life, but at this point, everything I had learned was just more words. I did not take God's Word for what it was worth. I simply looked at them as words in a leather-bound book.

While in this search for fulfillment, I found nothing at church, so I decided to look elsewhere. I turned to relationships. In the 7th and 8th grade, I found myself in a very serious relationship with a young lady who smothered me with affection. The attention and affection she gave me began to fill the emptiness. I was only in Junior High, and I thought I was complete. But like most things in life, all good things must come to an end. Our relationship was in and out, up and down, but I did not want to let her go. Our relationship was a comfort to me. It had become my stability.

Letting her go was very difficult for me. It broke my heart and left me crying for months. When we broke up, that little girl told me something that I have never forgotten. She told me, 'If you love something, let it go. If it doesn't come back to you, it was never meant to be. If it does come back, then it is yours forever.' I had lost my stability in life and began hurting all over again. The only way I knew to make it stop was to find another girl and get in another relationship to heal my brokenness.

At the end of my freshman year, I started dating another girl. It began just as something to fill the void, but soon became very comfortable. She met all my needs; physically and emotionally. We dated through high school and after graduation. Since we had been together for so long, I thought I ought to make it official and marry her. It had been nine years, and I didn't think either of us was going anywhere anytime soon.

I thought my life was finally going to be complete. I knew I needed to get a house, which I did. Then I got everything else in order that needed to be done before we could get married. We set the date, booked the hall, ordered invitations, ordered dresses, and did just about everything we needed. We were set, and we were happy. As time drew closer to the wedding, the emptiness began to come back. Along with the emptiness came sadness, depression, and unfulfillment. I didn't understand what was happening.

I was attending church faithfully, but I was just going through the motions and never really giving it my all. Then one day, the Spirit of the Lord began to move, and all I could do was cry. I cried through the entire service, as if I had been suppressing my feelings all my life. It felt good to release all the bottled emotions, but I knew from this point on, my life would never be the same. I began to examine my life, my fianc'e's life, and our relationship. Doubt began to set in, and fear gripped my heart. I felt that if God called me into the ministry, she would not be strong enough to support me. I was nervous, confused, and without answers. My family gave their opinions, but I knew God had a reason for what he was doing and that He was capable of doing anything.

I spoke with my pastor several times. He was very supportive with any decision that I could make, but made it very clear that it was my decision to make no matter what anyone else said. I was still in the dark, without any answers. I wanted someone to tell me what I should do. I wanted a plain and simple yes or no. I knew God was on my side and would work my decision out for my good, so three weeks before the wedding, we called everything off.

I was alone again and hurting. My stability was gone, and those who supported my decision I felt had abandoned me. I couldn't understand why God was allowing this to hurt so bad. I made the decision He wanted me to, so why didn't He take the pain and hurt away?

My loneliness and pain forced me to take matters into my own hands. I began seeing my former fianc'e on and off again. I got mad at God because He was capable of doing anything, but He wouldn't fix my relationship. I was mad at church people because they failed to take the time to build up and disciple the woman I wanted to be my future wife.

I became very sick and depressed. Thoughts of suicide crossed my mind. I decided that if serving God caused so much pain, I wanted nothing to do with Him or the people who served Him. The only reason I continued to go to church during this four-year depression was to avoid going to Hell.

I became afraid of commitment and relationships. I promised myself I would never allow myself to get hurt like that again. I began to treat women like they treated me. I played with their emotions, promising them the world. I would shower them with gifts, take them all back, and move on to the next one. I didn't care if they were single or married. I talked to any woman I could get my hands on. But deep inside me, there was a small voice that convicted me of my wrongs.

I reached a point in my life where I was going to get back with my ex-fianc'e, and there was nothing that God or anyone else could do to stop me. I was going to marry that girl once and for all. Unfortunately, she didn't feel the same way. She was tired of all my broken promises. I was angry and became violent about the things of God because I wanted her back so bad. I tried everything. I even used my 8th-grade girlfriend to make her jealous, because I knew how my ex-fianc'e felt about her.

People always said that I would one day marry my 8th-grade girlfriend. But I always told them that she was one marriage and two kids too late for me. As she and I began hanging out together, we became really good friends. We went to church together because that is where we had met again. As a kid, I always said I would marry her, but after the lifestyle she lived and what her life had become, I never thought it would happen.

I started getting back in church and finding my love for the Lord one more time. It took nothing short of a miracle to get me back to the things of God because I had allowed my hurt and pain to control me for so long. It took me a long time to realize that through it all, God was there. He said He would never leave me nor forsake me. It was my choices that caused the pain in my life. I know now that my life would have been much easier if I would have left matters in His hands, instead of my own.

God put a love back in my life for 'that little girl,' to whom I am now married. I have never had a closer relationship in my life than I do now. I have never been in love with God like I am now. It was a long road traveled, but I have arrived and plan on staying forever. I am in my home church of twenty years and don't plan on moving until the Lord is ready to move me.

I now know that which hurts you can only make you stronger. I have learned to trust in God with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding, in all my ways I acknowledge Him and He makes my path straight. I am the man I am today because God never gave up on me. Even when I threw in the towel and gave up, God was still there with open arms. He has given us the roadmap of life.

You can choose the easy way or the hard way. Either way, He's going to get you where He needs you!

Friend, we all need help. We were not created to go it alone. Whatever your need is, my Friend is here to help you.

Real Life Stories - Chapter 39



Dear Reader - are you at peace with God?  If not, you can be.  Do you know what awaits you when you die?  You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain.  Either Jesus Christ died for yours sins, or He didn't (He did!).  Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God?  We plead with you ... please don't make such a tragic mistake.

To get to know God; to be at peace with God; to have your sins forgiven; to make certain heaven will be your home for eternity; to make certain that you are in right-standing with God right now ... please click here to help understand the importance of being reconciled to God.  What you do about being reconciled to God will determine where you will spend eternity, precious one.  Your decision to be reconciled to God is the most important decision you'll ever make in this life. 

The staff and our ministry supporters so greatly appreciate hearing how God is touching lives for His glory through this outreach.  If this ministry has touched you in some special way, would you please consider taking a brief moment and share your blessing with us?  It is always encouraging to hear how God is using this ministry to touch lives for His glory through this outreach.  Simply email us at:

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