The Details Matter

secret lover

Isaiah 57:7 NLT
You have committed adultery on every high mountain.
There you have worshiped idols
and have been unfaithful to Me.

In all of my posts about quitting smoking, I have focused on idolatry and alluded to the unfaithfulness of having other gods.  I’ve acknowledged the infidelity in every way except by name: Adultery.

Martha gave me this word, literally.  She asked me if I had confessed this sin by name.  Five months of steady dealings and repentance and revelation and healing, but I had never confessed my adultery as adultery.  Having the name of a sin or stronghold is everything, and in repenting of adultery specifically, everything changed.

I didn’t just worship another god when I smoked; I was unfaithful to the One True Love of my life.  I had an affair.  I stepped out.  I took a lover.  I don’t use the word “lover” lightly, because I really hate that word.  Maybe it’s my generation, but at best “lover” is cheesy and at worst, it’s just absolutely sordid and gross.  And sordid and gross is about right.  I cheated on God.  So it wasn’t enough to confess to idolatry and the resulting unfaithfulness; my actual adultery had to be addressed.

I am astonished at how much being specific matters in dealing with the Lord.  He really does NOT deal in generalities.  Names matter, especially in confession.  Within hours of talking to Martha, I was a different person.  The nothingness began to fade.

Adultery is a BIG deal to God.  It’s part of the Ten Commandments, and it’s the only ground for divorce that He gives.  A BIG DEAL.  God wanted me to acknowledge what I’d done, by name, down to the very bottom.  It took five terrible months before He gave the word to Martha.  And not a moment of those five months was without purpose.  I needed to be brought to the end of myself so that I could see with God’s eyes what I’d done.  I had to know how He viewed this terrible breach, this broken trust, between us.  Only then could I not only confess but also renounce my lover with my whole being – and without hesitation.

Now, God is well aware that I’m a cheating whore, and He married me anyway.  We’re all whores, and we all have idols and commit adultery.  But how we deal with it matters.  Calling it by its true name matters.  Going beyond confession and actually renouncing our other lovers matters.  The details matter to God!  I thought I knew that, but I don’t think I did because it’s resonating within me like never before.

Everything He’s shown me and exposed in me has been a part of my adultery.  The anxiety, unfaithfulness, unbelief – all of it was part of the whole that He wanted me to see.  Fortunately for me – and all of us – His mercy and forgiveness is just as thorough as the repentance that He requires.  My huge need of this makes His overwhelming love and huge heart particularly precious to me today.  He is everything He promised.

Rend your hearts and not your garments and return to the Lord, your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in loving-kindness; and He revokes His sentence of evil [when His conditions are met].
Joel 2:13 Amplified

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    • Sam

      Oh, thank you.

    • Margo L

      Your comment about adultery being the only grounds for divorce before God is a fearful truth. I had never thought of it in that light. God tries to tear down idols in my life. However, I choose to let them stay in place with comments like “God still loves me”, or “God knows that I’ll always have struggles”. What a liar I am! It’s right there in the scriptures – He divorces people like me! But I try to make God into an image I want, and not what He declares himself to be.
      Rip my heart apart, God – show me my adultery!

    • Irene

      I have been asking the Lord to show me the source of my continued struggle with over-eating and wrong food choices. He has answered through your post. It is adultery I have even called myself a “chocolate lover” and found delight in secretly meeting my fleshly lusts with forbidden foods. I am on my face before Him repenting and trusting in His mercy and loving kindness. Thank you Jennifer for being His messenger to me this morning.

    • Susan

      Powerful word Jen. May He continue to put His finger on all our (my) harlotry so that we can stand before our God washed in the blood of the Lamb.

    • pearl

      Thank you for sharing your journey with all of us…it helps me stay real and honest in my dealing with the Lord…I have shared in other posts my struggles with this same thing, but mine is with people not food or cigarettes…I would like to ask a question of you all so if we have the greatest LOVE of all in Him…Just why do we go after other loves.???..what are we seeking? How can I find that “thing” only in HIm if that is my deepest hearts desire…I just don’t understand…What is that in us that says He is not enough? Is it like Hosea 2 where He says …You did not know that It was I who gave you the grain, wine, and oil etc…I have asked Him for His love from HIm for Him…It seems like He has so many of us in a deep process of purification…will it ever end…discouraged at my lack of love for Him, and that I too am an adulterer with the God I say I love 🙁 I will probably have to answer these questions I asked myself!!

      • Martha

        Dear Pearl, First the answer to your question, Why do we go after other loves? Because that is our nature, the old self, the old man, is always opposed to God. Romans 7 and 8 would be a place to stay. So the solution is our new creation which is ‘Christ in you, the hope of glory’. But Pearl, you are in the most terrible perfect place. Few will go there. You want to love God but you are willing to see and then admit that you don’t and can’t. That is the bottom of sin because it is the first command of God. To fail to love Him is the root of all sin. Once you admit to that, then you are close to the solution . . .which is as you say! God must give you the love He requires of you and He will! Your need and cry is a delight to Him. He will work it out and come to you. How wonderful, we all bless you for coming down to the bottom of the barrel and now you will be lifted up. Keep going because one day you will love Him more than you ever could imagine.

        • Sam

          So wonderful, Martha! Pearl, believe it or not, no one can claim anything in this Life but total destitution and poverty. Those are BLESSED. Our love for God is the love of the Son for the Father in us!

          All you can offer Him is your inability!

          This word He said resonates in my ears all day long: “You can do NOTHING apart from Me.” (That includes ALL, including loving Him.)

          • pearl

            Ya…my repentance a year ago or so…was shallow…when God said you are an adulterer Pearl…I said Oh yah I am…but didn’t know the depth of it…I tried to get free…but didn’t want to admit I was a hopeless whore…and not even capable of Loving Him…Keep it coming Lord…every drop of who I really am …let it come out…for I am starting to See you….I won’t and Can’t love Him…I am hopeless …a hopeless sinner…I am Gomer….. :'( It is ALL about repentance isn’t it…seeing WHO we are…It’s a horrible fact that I would go after “other” lovers all day long…I confessed it…He is the ONE who will solve my wicked adulterous heart…He will be the the ONE to take the name of the Baal’s out of my heart and mouth…I can’t do it…I give up!!!

            • Sam

              His hand is on you, Pearl. I won’t come to interrupt that precious intimacy.

              I will only say this: just remain in that light (truth and continuous revelation) every day of your life. Seek it. It will make you soar as the eagle we all are called to be.

              I also seek to kiss His hand along with you.

        • pearl

          Thank you …Martha….:'( that is encouraging!!

      • Sam

        Hi Pearl. One of us here asked:

        “Why this valley of tears, this dark world, this corruption and total hopelessness?”

        He said: “Becouse you turned your back to me, and not your face.”

        One woman in the north of Spain (now with the Lord) had a saying: “We are repented terrorists.”

        We have to accept and embraze this fact ALL OVER OUR LIVES, a fact that not only will give us peace, but it will let Him be what He IS:

        “We stoned His propehts and then adorned their graves with flowers.”

        If we do NOT agree with this fact, our sin remains, and we are sons of those who did it when we do not recognize it. Jesus said this to the Farisees, and it so easy to miss the point. He was talking to us all.

        I once said to Him a very similar word, not regarding me, but another person: “Lord, why this loss and darkness, (why this apparent aweful lot)?”

        And He blowed on my ear like a thunder His saying: “Seek and Buy (with no money) my REFINED GOLD.”

        So, this darkless and loss and hopelessness is the chance for His Life to rise up, and it is necessary for Him to show the contrast between His Glory and our rubish ways.

        And here shall be found too the patience of the saints.


        • Susan

          Yes Sam, and will He find faith?

        • pearl

          Thanks Sam for trying to help answer these ?’s ..He says to love Him with our All…and I just can’t and have asked for the love to do that…and haven’t gotten it yet..I can’t even love Him myself…I am in a battle for who I will love! Very very sad, I choose Him yet my heart fails Him…over and over…with this subject at hand…longing for the day of freedom!

          • Sam

            Love and Piety is a matter of reduction. Jesus is an absolute loss, not gain. Embraze the loss and your reduction, because it is your surest and fastest way to Him.

            Dear shulamites talk about this a lot, and they are so right spot on!!

            It is a contradiction, but if you want to love Him, you have to embraze your failure at doing it.

            This is His word:
            “Lose your life.”

            And the question: “what life?”

            And the answer is: “all of a life which you are an expert in producing, a life rooted in the old rotten Adam, which cannot and shall not inherit His Life.”

            The Christian Life is a jump from failure to failure (my life), while jumping from Glory to Glory (His Life). We want the second retaining the first, and that’s not possible.

            And He told us why not: “Otherwise, My building cannot be finished.” or… “the new wine will rip apart the old wineskin, spoiling both.”

            So, His “NO” to our old man/self is a “YES” to His amazing ever new-wonder work. The New is so big and wonderful that the old has no place there. They cannot marry, though we try desperately (I do).

            • pearl

              Thank you…Sam, I am trying to understand…

    • Sandy

      wow… my fear of the Lord just got bigger…

    • Pauline

      Rejoicing with you tonight, Jen–He is FAITHFUL!!

    • Patricia

      Jen, it seems your beautiful raw honesty has lit quite a fire here. But it’s a comfort to know, it’s a crowded pit I find myself in–that can’t be by accident, it’s an appointment, serving His purpose. All the time spent repenting after each snake is uncovered; I kept expecting joy, and then came the realization, instead, that I don’t even love him! One of Martha’s booklets dropped that particular bomb when I least expected it. Can’t imagine where this is all going, but Martha’s writings did bring me to the unshakeable knowledge that He is good. I’m going to keep all of us in prayer, and be still. He who has begun a good work in us shall continue it….. Thank you Jen, and Martha too.

    • Tina

      Father please have your way in my heart also. Help me not to despair over the power of sin or fear that evil has more power to keep me than Your love.
      Going back and reading this again after a couple days I see this work. I had felt like you Pearl in many ways…despairing so much that I felt I didn’t even have the strength to address it again. Now I see that all day yesterday I felt…I felt a gratitude and love for Jesus…a simple yet sweet love…in return this gave me hope. I realized that I have never given up anything, not drugs, cig., or sinful loves apart from it being for a love that He awakened in my heart.
      I will never get victory by condemnation, guilt or despair or self-effort.
      I cannot love Him first. I love Him because He firsts loves me. He comes and finds me in my honesty and need.
      Help us Spirit.

      • pearl

        This can be a loonngg journey…I had lied to myself sooo long…He is bringing truth and honesty to me too….Coming clean is so freeing…

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