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Joined: Oct 2006
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INPUT FROM CHRISTIANS ONLY PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1 Corinthians 7:15
But if the unbeliever leaves, let him do so. A believing man or woman is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.

There were no divorce courts when this was written. In God's eyes I am divorced! The "laws of the land" is the only thing that answers my own question. But the details are still left un-answered. I'd like all of the opinions I can get on this one.

WHERE IS THE LINE DRAWN FOR MY MAKING "FRIENDS/AQUAINTANCES"?


Status: Dissolving in January

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Wait until the ink is dry. You are either married or divorced. It's like being pregnant; there's no in-between.

The thought that you were "divorced on paper" is the same mindset that leads to countless cases of adultery.

Since we are no longer in Bible times, God expects us to live by the laws of the land as long as they are not in conlict with His written law. According to that law, you are married so act accordingly.

Dr Harley is an experienced Christian counselor, and he SRONGLY advises the same.

Be patient; in the grand scheme of things, there is no rush. And the interim will give you much needed healing time to protect you from making life choices from lonliness.
Do things with groups, family, or same-sex friends. Volunteer at a children's hospital or nursing home.

You will never regret taking the high road.

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I know you asked for Christian's only, but you also wanted all opinions. Just so you know where I'm coming from, I was raised in a Christian home, believe in Christ's teachings, but I don't believe in organized religion and so tend to question and occassionally reject literal biblical translations. Here is your question:

 Quote:
WHERE IS THE LINE DRAWN FOR MY MAKING "FRIENDS/AQUAINTANCES"?


Taken literally, I don't believe there is ever a line. You can make friends and aquaintances any time whether you are married or not. From what I understand, it would be Christian behavior to be kind to strangers and offer friendship, regardless of marital status. But I don't think that's what you means.

I believe you are talking about dating, so please correct me if I'm wrong.

On this BB, most feel the civil divorce should be final and the ink dry before you date. But the more I read, it seems that their definition of dating is akin to an interview for marriage - in that you don't spend any time in the company of someone of the opposite sex unless you are considering them as a potential marriage partner. I don't look at dating this way. Dating can be a way to meet interesting people and do fun things. It does not even have to be romantic.

I went to a rib-fest on a "date" with a male friend. There were no pretenses or expectations. We had a great time. A band played and we ran into some other mutual friends. I've had coffee and even dinner dates as well as going to the fall fair, Marineland, hiking and skiing. I've done many similar things with female friends as well, but most of my women friends are married with kids and don't have the availability that I do. My one single girlfriend does the bar/pickup joint scene which isn't for me. If I go to a bar with a man, we can listen to the band, chat with other people (we went with a group) and just have a nice time without being harrassed by other guys trying to pick me up. I also meet other single women this way - if we meet a friend of his that also has a date. These women are often more like me in that they like to socialize and go out, but they don't want to be part of a meat market. I prefer more low-key, activity-based social type events where we can talk and joke and just have a good time. I consider this dating in the sense that we make arrangements ahead of time and we spend the duration of the event together (i.e. he doesn't spot someone and ditch me to take home). But it is by no means an interview for marriage or even an interview for a second date.

Now I'm told here that I'm wrong, because my divorce hasn't gone through. In my jurisdiction, the LSA covers all the aspects of an American divorce with the one exception that you can't remarry until you get an actual divorce certificate. This I don't have yet, but I've been legally separated for nearly 2 years. I am nowhere near ready for a committed relationship but I'm more than ready to get out there and meet people. If and when I'm ready for more, at least I'll have a broader pool of people to choose from, and a better idea of what's out there.

Anyway, sorry for the long-winded response but this is how I'm making my way out into the world.

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My divorce was finalized on Christmas Day; only because in my country (same as Tabby's) we need to be legally separated for a minimum of one year before even filing for divorce. Add to that the fact the XH filed for divorce, and then stalled the proceedings by not filing the second set of papers.

My marriage ended nearly two years ago. I met a man that I fell head over heels for in the meantime. We are very happy together, and have no doubt in our minds that we will spend our life together as husband and wife.

I understand why people on this site feel the BS needs time to grieve, but I found in my own personal life, the affair was the best thing to happen to me.

I was betrayed, hurt and devastated; but only until I stepped back and looked at the larger picture.

I was lied to daily, for most of my marriage, I learned of other affairs, boundaries that were crossed, and other unwholesome goings on.

I was duped. Completely and totally. I had enough.

Divorce was something I longed for this past year and a half. Yet, due to legalities, was not something I could get.

I am now free from my XH. He no longer has any say nor business with me, nor I with him. My hate for him very quickly overtook and good feelings I had for him. Add to that, not seeing nor speaking to him in nearly two years. I can barely remember what he looked like.

As stated, I dated before my divorce was finalized, and have never been happier about this decision. I am much happier then I ever was with XH.


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Why do you say that in God's eyes you are already divorced?

Some people are divorced on paper, but haven't healed enough to date. Others have had divorces that drag on for years, but they've lived separately the enire time and have done the work to heal and be ready for a better relationship.

In general, a minimum of a year alone is required to be ready for another relationship. That's because you have to get through all the "firsts." The first Christmas alone, the first Valentine's, the first snow, the first spring. You have to reset. You also need to move beyond the aching need and the pain. This seems to be easier if you are the one who filed for divorce, or left.

On the other hand, I certainly don't think anyone should live like a hermit. Go out and make new friends. Make male friends if you want.

Last edited by Greengables; 12/31/08 03:39 PM.

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hubiscous,

At the time Paul wrote his letter to the church at Corinth, the divorce laws were in fact much different than they are today. But there was also a legal way to enact the dissolution of a marriage; even in times dating back to when the people of Israel were wandering in the dessert. In fact, Jesus commented on that established method when approached by those who were trying to trip him up and asked about why Moses had allowed a man to give his wife a writ of divorce.

Jesus answer to the crowd stated that from the beginning it was not always so and He then mentions the Genesis account of the first marriage and states again that the two are to become one flesh. But He also said that divorce was allowed because of our hardness of heart. Jesus also allowed for an out for those whose spouses were sexually immoral and remained unrepentant. (The adultery clause, if you will) God said that He hates divorce, but He also knows that we are not really capable of perfect forgiveness and so gives us an out because of our inadequacies.

Under Roman occupation the citizens were required to conform to Roman law. Jesus himself mentions this in regard to taxes when He says to Pay to Caesar that which belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.

Paul wrote his message in response to a phenomenon that was taking place at that time; men and women who were becoming believers and as a direct result were being abandoned by their spouses who remained loyal to their pagan religion. The reason for the abandonment was the conversion of one spouse. So the application to our modern day dilemma is marginal at best, IMO.

But now we come to the specifics about which you are asking. Does God consider you to be already divorced?

Maybe He does…

But we also have to answer the question of does the law consider you to be divorced?

And more importantly, does either the law or God consider you to be able to enter into a sexual relationship with another person at this time? Because I think that is where this is ultimately leading.

While it can be said that God would not stop you from becoming a friend of a man/woman and might even permit you to fall in love and desire a married relationship with him/her, I think that until the divorce is granted legally, God would require that you remain celibate and not move in with her/him and start a relationship of cohabitation. That would violate another of God’s laws and so would be in contradiction to what He says outside the context of the passage you have quoted. And God does not contradict Himself.

Now we could also make the case for marital laws being different today than they were back then and say that no marriage license was required at that time for a couple to be considered married. But there was an accepted practice as to how a marriage was to be established and that varied over time from God presenting the woman to the man Himself in the case of Eve being presented to Adam, to a more elaborate system during the time of Jesus in which a man would negotiate for the hand of a woman with her father or other male relative, if her father was deceased, until an agreement was reached. A glass of wine would then be shared between the prospective husband and the father of the bride and offered to the future bride. If she accepted the wine, she accepted the man as her future husband and though they were united at that moment, they did not consummate the marriage until some time at a later date.

The groom would retire, usually to his father’s estate (house) where he would begin to build a home for his new bride. For the poor this might be an additional room on a tent, a room or suite of rooms within the confines of the groom’s family home or in some cases for the rich, an entirely new home constructed on land owned by the groom.

When the dwelling was ready, the groom would return with his friends and family, parading through the streets, to claim his bride and take her to a feast where their wedding would be celebrated before consummation in their new home. This was in fact the tradition that Jesus mentions in His telling His followers that He was going to prepare a place for them (us) and if He went to prepare a place that He would in fact return so that we might join Him there. It is also the basis for the second coming being referred to as the Wedding Feast of The Lamb.

So even at the time when Jesus walked this Earth, a wedding was more than merely shacking up and even before that time there were other requirements that made a real marriage a real marriage.

Remember too that Paul also tells us that we are to follow the laws of our nation in so far as they do not directly contradict the Law of God. So if the law of the land says that you are still married, you are, under the law of the land, married. Paul states that the authorities over us have been placed in that position by God and should be obeyed since it is from God that they draw their authority.

Does God want you to marry this person?

Maybe…

Does He want you to move in with another person and begin living with him/her as husband and wife before you are legally divorced?

That answer I think would be “no.”

Would God allow you to have a relationship of "friend" with him/her, remain sexually inactive and wait until you are officially divorced before taking the next step?

Maybe...

But remember that scripture must be weighed in light of scripture and using any single passage to justify what another passage says is wrong is not reading in context but creating a pretext.

You asked for opinions and that is mine…

So what's the hurry?

Mark

Last edited by Mark1952; 12/31/08 05:36 PM. Reason: To make the answer more generic in application.
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New to this site and found it quite interesting that someone had questions regarding relationships while still going through the paperwork for divorce.

First marriage ended after 12 years of infidelity on his part. He finally found the woman of his dreams I guess after looking throughout our entire marriage. I remarried a man who told me I was his queen. More like his obsession. Went through years of walking on eggshells, emotional wear and tear ending in a physical altercation making me strong enough to call it quits.

I have a friend, a Christian man, who truly cares about me. We have been friends for quite some time. He is kind, considerate and treats me with respect which I am not accustom to. However, religion gets in the way. He feels guilt for his feelings towards me. Even though we do not have a "sexual" relationship.

The point is my guilt stems from years of allowing myself to be abused by other men. Allowing my children to be verbally and mentally abused and making excuses. I gave them a very poor example of what men are truly like. My father would be so disappointed in me if he were still alive. I agree with the other person who stated that to have a friend of the opposite sex is not wrong however I would not jump into bed with them or have too many expectations too soon because there is a healing process that you have to go through.

In my interpretation of the Bible sin is sin. A grudge held is murder in God's eyes. Adultery is coveting another mans wife whether you act on it or not. It all burns up in the end. The last comes first if you read the New Testament. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Nothing can be justified but we are human. That is why God sent his Son.

So I allow my self my friend. And I thank God for him and pray that God forgives me for my sins along with everything else.

CeeCee

That's my bandwagon song and dance.

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Ok - the law of the land - that's good enough for me.

Sexually? HECK NO - not interested at all!!!!!!!! Clear that up for some of you.

The moral of this story is this. I prayed for years for God to get this immoral leach out of my life. She cheated, took nasty photos of herself and sold them via her cell phone, and she is a non-believer. That made this divorce ok for me. It wasn't until I finished my prayers the correct way, :I promise to go back to church and take my children with me: that she rolled over in bed and said "I want out"!

I also prayed that a Christian woman would be placed into my life and that too happened. She is 8 hours away from me and we talked for a month steadily. Then she decided we were breaking the rules by even talking to eachother. I found this very troubling. TALKING? No cantact at all????

So here I sit, no not in a hurry, but wanting some sort of contact with her.

In a hurry for another relationship? Yes I hear this all the time, always from those who do not understand that I havn't HAD a relationship in over 5 years with this atheist! So am I in a hurry? Not really, just in need!


Status: Dissolving in January

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Talking is contact. If the divorce is not final then no dating til then.

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It's the being in a need that's the problem. It drives us to do really stupid things, including rebound relationships. Rebound relationships have something in common with affairs, they are the result of unmet emotional needs. The desire to have the ENs met becomes so overpowering that one starts a relationship even when the relationship is wrong. And, rebound relationships are wonderful at first. They feel good to the re-boundee. Then, the stress of reality starts to show the week points, and tha perhaps the reboundee isn't as heal as she thought.

I'm not saying you, H, are rebounding. It's just what happened again and again on the After DV board, so just use some caution.

And it sounds like your friend may have a lot of wisdom to cut contact for now.


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 Quote:
She is 8 hours away from me and we talked for a month steadily. Then she decided we were breaking the rules by even talking to each other. I found this very troubling. TALKING? No contact at all????

So here I sit, no not in a hurry, but wanting some sort of contact with her.

Why can't you simply respect her wishes for a few more days?

Perhaps she is not comfortable having contact with a legally married man, whether you consider yourself divorced in the eyes of God or not.

Your need for contact to fulfill your needs seems to be overriding your respect for this friend and her wishes.


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This says it all:

 Quote:
_________________________
Status: Dissolving in January

Male: 38
Married: 14yrs
Wife: 34 (finding herself - yes she is "lost")
Son: 9
Daughter: 7

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Maybe you should read this story (unfortunately very typical) where folks don't wait until they're DIVORCED (aka no longer married) before starting new relationships:

Click Here

Hope this helps.
Jo

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I knew coming in here what the true answer was. I just needed some 2x4 smacks from the best of MB!!!!

I do respect her wishes. I don't want to hurt anyone. I'll bear the pain myself and be a "GOOD BOY"! \:\)

Thank you all for the blunt answers!

God Bless you ALL!

\:\)


Status: Dissolving in January

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Each person can have thier own insight, for me I am trying to push more towards self suffient. Living on my own, raising my daughter and other 2 kids on my own. Yes it is good to have friends, both male and female. But for me I don't want to depend on anyone, at least now and probably even after the divorce. I have been seperated for about 9 months now. Been cheated on about 2 yrs ago. Lost everything and finishing the bankruptcy and starting over. I enjoying talking with other women, especailly when they can relate to the circumstance, as well as other men too. SO being friends with the oppisite sex is ok with me, because I don't want to dating. Dating leads to love, and trusting. I don't want that in my life at this point in time. Yes I would have been divorce in October but my stbex wife signed the papers and resubmitted a counter claim. I said no and she stopped becasue she couldn't afford her lawyer and didn't want me to pay for the whole thing becasue she feared I would cheat her out of something. So we decide to go another route. Anyway I think at least for me dating is not good until everything from the old life is gone. It only makes a mess. Just my 2cents.

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I think there are several questions you need to be able to answer first, regardless of whether it's final or not.

Are you ready to give what a relationship needs? For me, no way. I don't think I'm very capable of truly loving another person right now. I am way too needy and uncomfortable with who I am right now. If I was looking for something, it would be for looking for puppy dog feelings and a mommy to tell me it's all gonna be ok.

Are you over your wife/ex-wife? For me, no. I still care about what happens with her and feel responsible when she's hurting. I still want to feel like she loves me, and if she said she wanted to work on things, I would listen.

Would dating disrespect your wife in anyway? You can't worry about that too much, but I think that's a factor. I don't know that that's even fair, if you aren't a cheater and you didn't want the marriage to end, but it's not justification either.

Have you taken care of your kids first? Not that need to know all that's going on, but they need time to recover as well, as seeing Daddy with another woman can be devastating I would think. As well, they need you, especially now. And if you're focusing so much on you and what you want/need, you can't focus on them.

That being said, you can't be a hermit, and a divorce can also lead to a loss of a lot if friends. I don't think it's a problem to do things with friends of the opposite sex, but I think you need to make sure that person knows where you stand as far as dating, how you feel about yourself and your wife. Be honest, just like any other time.

My wife has done things with other men since our separation. She has had some guys ask her on a date, but has turned them all down. I also have done things with other women as friend. I did recently go on a trip with a woman, sharing the same room for monetary reasons (2 beds). It was platonic, completely. I was concerned about it, and got advice about it from a few others. As well, I let my wife know I was going (without rubbing it in) and she seemed ok with it. She has since told me it was wrong for me to do that. I don't know if it's because she cares, because she feels disrespected, or just a moral judgement. I don't feel guilty about it, but certainly wouldn't make a habit of it either.


Me 38
Divorced 8/09
DS 10,6
DD 4

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