“I had no idea how couples could ever survive the pain of infidelity,” said Selena Thompson. “I had never really seen a godly marriage or a watched a couple reconcile through Christ’s work in their lives. But that changed when we came to re|engage at Watermark. I’ll never forget hearing for the first time that our problems were not unique or seeing couples who had made it through to the other side together after unfaithfulness and betrayal. If those couples could survive, maybe God could help us through.
“My own parents split up when I was a kid, and afterward, I felt neglected and acted out to get attention. Angry and rebellious, I engaged in inappropriate relationships and used drugs. By the time I was 18, I was an unmarried new mom. I developed a severe methamphetamine habit and slowly lost my home, car, and everything else to drugs. When I realized I would soon lose my daughter, too, we packed up and moved to Lubbock with my mother so I could get clean. I look back at those years and realize that I should be dead, but for God’s protection.
“I had only been sober for 90 days when I met Michael. He was so different from other guys I had dated, and I fell for him. I had lived a difficult life and had developed a hard heart, so sharing life with someone was not easy. When we got married, life seemed good, but we relied on our own abilities, rather than God, to make our marriage work. Fear and not trusting the Lord were huge struggles for me, and that played out in our relationship through control and anger.
“I never looked at what I needed to work on because I spent all my time trying to fix my husband. I controlled our money, the discipline of our daughter, and everything in our house. When I didn’t get my way, everyone paid the price. To make things worse, we didn’t know many people who were actively walking with the Lord, and we didn’t get much discipleship through church. So, we just focused on our jobs and making money while our relationship suffered.
“Michael got a promotion which required us to move to a different city, and I had to commute a long distance to work every day. The Enemy used that distance to drive us farther apart. I became insecure and was worried that Michael might have a relationship with someone at work. Instead of confronting him with these thoughts, I confided in a male friend at work with my concerns. An emotional affair began, and eventually it became physical. Soon I was secretive, anxious, and living in sin.
“When Michael and I separated, I moved back to Lubbock and wrestled with a lot of guilt and shame. Fortunately, I got involved in a local Bible study, and met women who were willing to pray for my marriage and me. In his anger, Michael had begun an affair, which made it such a difficult time for me. These women prayed for me and reminded me to wait on the Lord because reconciliation was possible. Even when Michael filed for divorce, I refused to give up. I studied Psalm 37 and felt convicted that God wanted me to fight for our marriage.
“To get farther away from me, Michael applied for a transfer in his company, and he was moved to Plano. The Lord was doing work in Michael’s heart, and after three months he eventually asked me to move to Plano with him. We found Watermark and joined re|engage, Watermark’s marriage ministry.
“We often describe our first time through re|engage as God’s opportunity to put out the dumpster fire in our marriage, and the second time was for God to show us what started the dumpster fire in the first place. The Lord did so much work in both of our lives through re|engage and re:generation, Watermark’s biblical recovery ministry. Reintegrating into the same home was not easy, but the Lord was faithful to help us look at the gaping wounds in our relationship and allow us to heal. God helped me see my own sin and depravity and reminded me how He had been with me over and over again. Even in my disobedience, God saved and protected me.
“Today, we are involved in the Watermark Plano campus, and we’ve led four groups through re|engage. Every time we meet couples who are in the same place our marriage once was, it’s a reminder of God’s faithfulness to us. With every group, we end up with more great friends who love the Lord like we do.
“I don’t know if there are words to express how much God has blessed us. No one other than Christ could have changed our broken lives and turned it all into something wonderful. But He did this for both of us, and it is worth the wait and the hard work to be in a marriage that God designed. We can now leave a legacy of reconciliation instead of divorce for our kids. Now we get to walk our daughter, Skylar, down the aisle together as one. I can see God’s hand throughout our relationship, and if you let Him, the Lord can work in yours, too.”