In our religion, we value marriage highly—more than anything except the atonement of Jesus Christ. We believe marriage is central to God’s plan of happiness. Accordingly, when a marriage fails, we often think we have failed at life.
If we are divorced, we may think something has gone horribly wrong, that God’s plan for us has been thwarted, and that our lives are completely broken and off course. In a very real sense, we worry that we don’t even really have a place in God’s kingdom any longer. Do these thoughts sound familiar? Have they been spinning in your head for years?
Please remember that Job suffered as a test of his faithfulness and not as a punishment for sins. In fact, the Book of Job describes him as a “perfect” man (Job 1:1). And that perfect man lost everything. People judged him and wondered what evil he must have committed to bring these trials on himself (Job 4:7-8, 8:20, 11:14-15, 17).
We have unique doctrines in our faith that can help us understand why our suffering is meaningful. Most of the Christian world believes that because Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, the rest of us are consigned to a fallen world, and the human race is living out Plan B—which includes Jesus Christ. The scriptures of the restoration teach us that the fall was part of God’s plan all along (see Moses 4:6; 2 Nephi 2:22-26). Adam and Eve’s fall did not usher in Plan B. The fall of Adam and Eve was part of Plan A. Just like Adam and Eve, at some point we all partake of forbidden fruit and fall from innocence.
There was no Plan B. Suffering, mistakes, misuses of agency, and the general pain and chaos of mortal life were all part of the divine plan to perfect us and help us become more like our Father and Mother in Heaven.
My marriage to Cathy was not Plan B. I am not living out Plan B because my first marriage didn’t work out. Our marriage is Plan A and probably always was. But to be prepared for it, I had a lot to learn—and I learned a lot from my previous marriages.
If you believe life has gone horribly wrong and the plan of God is no longer working in your life, remember Job. Remember also that you have been (or can be) anointed in the house of God to become kings and queens, to reign over vast and numberless dominions. You have the seeds of that power within you right now. You have all the kingly or queenly power you need to stand up and claim your blessings through the atonement of Jesus Christ.
LILY Tube Special: Trailer (subscribe to our channel!)
This week’s podcast is featured on both LILY Pod and LILY Tube (listen/watch options) where Jeff Teichert and Kels Goodman discuss the unique challenges of men in the modern world and what it means to “Man Up.” In our weekly video, we explore divorce and God’s plan for each of us. Watch our featured short on the innate value of mid-singles and check out our new official trailer for LILY Tube (be sure to subscribe and hit the bell for notifications!).
If you enjoy this letter, forward to a friend. Our goal is to support as many mid-singles and later-married couples as possible!
To get a copy of "Intentional Courtship" on Amazon and create more love in your life in 2022, visit Intentional Courtship.