Better than Restored: Hope for Hurting Marriages

This article is a guest post from my dear friend, Shannon Geurin.  There is no one better equipped to write a post on the hard work of restoration in marriage than she is.  Shannon and John are living proof that no marriage is beyond repair.  Be encouraged, and please share this story with your friends who need hope for their hurting marriages. -Sarah

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!  

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!

We live in a world in which we want everything to be easy and convenient, don’t we? We want faster, easier, and simpler.

We want crockpot meals that take 30 minutes to prepare, can simmer all day and be ready to eat when we get home from work.

We want to order our favorite Starbucks drink from an app on our phone and swing by and pick it up in 10 minutes without waiting or talking to anyone.

We want to pay for things with nothing more than our thumbprint on our iPhones. We want what we want, and we want it right now!

And as much as our society  thrives on the now, obtaining restoration in marriage is not immediate.

That is why it’s hard.

But, I’ve got good news for you today –Nothing is impossible with God. (Matthew 19:26)

Nothing.

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!

There were times in my own marriage that I didn’t think that we would make it. 

There was just no way.
Too much damage had been done.
The betrayal was too deep.

Every single day, I feared that John was going to come home and say, “Shannon, I can’t do this anymore, it’s too hard, it hurts too much and I’m too tired.”

He had every right to leave.
It’s what everyone expected.
It’s what I expected.

Honestly, it would’ve been easier on both of us if he had left –rather than embracing the hard work of restoration. But he didn’t…

He chose to stay.
He chose to forgive.
He chose to rebuild.

My husband and I embraced the difficult work of restoration 5 years ago, and by the grace of God, our marriage is stronger than ever before.

Five years of hard work.

Looking back, it seems like a tiny blurb in history when in reality it was huge.

We had to take one day at a time and it seemed so slow.

But now, as I look into our future, those five years are everything.

I cannot begin to explain how grateful I am that we stuck by each other and fought for each other…even when at times we wanted to do the exact opposite.

Making the decision to pursue restoration is just the beginning.

John and I discovered that there are four crucial steps for anyone seeking to restore their marriage once trust has been broken.

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!

It’s vital that once you’ve made the decision to restore your marriage, you take each phase of restoration carefully.

1. Forgive, forgive, forgive. And then, forgive again. It is imperative. With that said, do not confuse forgiveness and trust! It takes time to rebuild trust. It took a long time for John to trust me again. I had to work at building his trust but it didn’t mean that he had not forgiven me.

2. Communication is Key. Be real with each other. Be vulnerable. No matter how scary it is. Authenticity and vulnerability in a marriage are two of its most beautiful aspects.

3. Seek Christian Counseling. I can’t stress this enough. I know it’s expensive, especially if you do not have insurance coverage, but in the end, it will be worth every penny. Make the investment in your future. And make sure that the counsel you receive is from a Biblical Perspective.

4. Prioritize your Relationship with Jesus. I saved the most important step for last. The one absolute in marriage restoration is your relationship with Jesus Christ

God isn’t afraid to talk about the details surrounding your brokenness in marriage and He isn’t afraid to talk about your mistakes! Fully surrender yourself to God and allow Him to see you and your heart, even the dark parts.

God can restore what is broken and transform it into something amazing.

As we walked through this process of restoration, we learned that marriage is not about sex, parenting, tax advantages or getting our needs met.

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!

Marriage is about two people joining every part of their lives together.

One-flesh.
Unified.
Forever.

Webster’s definition of restoration is the act or process of returning something to its original condition by repairing it.

According to that definition, John and I have moved way past restoration. We’ve been re-built and renovated.

We’re better than restored.

What does a “better than restored” marriage look like?

You wake up every single day with gratitude for your mate.
You do not take your spouse for granted.
You recognize that love is an action word, not a feeling.
When there is strife, you communicate and resolve it quickly.
You purposely make your spouse a priority every day.

Through restoration, John and I have become better people; it has helped to build deeper character within both of us.

Restoration in marriage is hard. Sometimes you’ll want to quit, but if you’ll just hang on, you can be fully restored. In fact, your marriage can be better than restored, no matter the circumstance!

1 Peter 5:10 says, “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

God has confirmed our marriage. We are his children and He wants good things for us. We do not ever doubt this!

God has strengthened us. Our hearts are strong. We are not timid. We are fighters, but we realize that the strength comes from God and God alone.

God has established us. We have been given so much favor in the last couple of years. John’s career has flourished. I have become a writer and am working on a book. We are seeing fruit in the lives of our girls.

When two people are committed to the hard work of restoration, every marriage has the potential to become “better than restored.”

Even yours….

xoshannon

A Note from Sarah: If you have experienced broken trust and betrayal in your own marriage, I encourage you to read Shannon & John’s full story by clicking here.  It is a beautiful testimony of God’s ability to redeem and restore a broken marriage.



bio picShannon is fun-loving and authentic. She loves big and she loves fierce. At the top of that love list is Jesus, her husband John and her two daughters, Alex and Averee. She’s a woman who has been rescued and restored. She believes every woman has a calling and Shannon has a passion to see women everywhere rise up into who God has designed them to be. Although a book is in her future, you can currently read her blog at www.shannongeurin.com.  You can also find Shannon on Twitter, Facebook, & Instagram.


This article has been shared at many of these Faith & Family Linkups.

Sarah Koontz

About Sarah Koontz

  Sarah Koontz invites Christians of all ages to explore the beauty of God’s design. She is a passionate storyteller who enjoys using illustrations to communicate deep spiritual truths. Sarah lives on 13-acres in South Dakota with her husband, two daughters and a rowdy flock of 30 chickens. She revels in their simple, uncluttered life. Follow Sarah on FacebookInstagram, Twitter and Pinterest. Read Sarah's full Bio Here.

18 thoughts on “Better than Restored: Hope for Hurting Marriages

  1. Wow. Thank you for sharing from your broken places. We celebrate eighteen years of marriage next week. With littles and bills and fatigue, this season is so hard. You offer hope, help, and the “me, too” I needed. Thank you!

    1. I hear you Kelly. I wish life could be perfect..honestly I do. But, it’s not, right? We’re all struggling with something or another but we have to keep our priorities in line, and when there is brokenness in marriage, we often fail to remember that it CAN be restored! Not only restored, but better than restored! I’m glad you stopped by Sarah’s place today Kelly!

  2. It was an honor to share here today, Sarah. My prayer is that your readers will be inspired to do the hard work of restoration if they are living in a season of brokenness in marriage. I’m so grateful we serve a God who restores and who never gives up on us!

  3. Well said, Shannon, on so many levels. You and your husband chose the hard route, but the best one for those of us who have One greater than any of us to help us. My husband and I have been married 51 years now and spent 30 years as marriage and family therapists working in Christian settings and I can say that your testimony holds true for those who are willing to do the hard work needed to bring restoration and beyond! Thanks for sharing here!

    1. Thank you, Pam, for stopping by and sharing your testimony with us. It is hard work, but with people like you to walk alongside, restoration is always possible. I appreciate what you do to support and encourage Christian families.

    2. Thank you so much Pam! I’m so grateful for the One, because without Him we wouldn’t have survived. So many marriages are missing out on what could save them! I’m glad you stopped by Sarah’s today!

  4. Your story gives me hope for my marriage. My husband of 28 years has had several affairs during our marriage, I completely shut down and tried to heal without God. I know now that God is the only one and way to restore our marriage, but now my husband is the one that does not want to work on the marriage. Please pray for him and me. I pray everyday to save our marriage and for God to change my husband’s heart. Over the last few years we have tried to save the marriage but not with God’s help. I want a marriage with my husband with God at the center, I hope it is not to late.

    1. Hi there dear Traci..I’m so very sorry for the struggles you’ve faced in your marriage. You hit the nail on the head, though! Without God we just can not do it. I encourage you to dig into the Word. Pray and talk to God about it. He will direct you! He will give you courage and boldness and strength. Rely on Him only!

      I am praying for you and your husband right now! Mostly I am praying for your heart Traci, that you would see and know the beauty of our Father!

  5. Thank you for sharing. I think that the statements you made about a better than restored marriage and what it looks like being the following:
    You wake up every single day with gratitude for your mate.
    You do not take your spouse for granted.
    You recognize that love is an action word, not a feeling.
    When there is strife, you communicate and resolve it quickly.
    You purposely make your spouse a priority every day.
    Are things I need to remember to do daily.
    Thanks for this wonderful reminder.

    1. Your welcome Tona! If we can just remember these very important things, our marriages would be so much better, and God wants good things for us, all we have to do is work! And in the end, it’s so rewarding:-)

  6. Amazing story of forgiveness. Thanks for sharing. While this particular issue isn’t our story, my husband and I have definitely had our share of troubles. Marriage is HARD work for sure. We recently celebrated 19 years, and I’m so glad that with Jesus as our rock, we’ve been able to persevere. 🙂 Blessings to you and your family.

    1. Yes Brandi, marriage is hard work! It was never meant to be easy, but for those that work, God has so many rewards. I can’t imagine life without my husband today, and I’m so grateful we chose the hard work of restoration. Congratulations on 19 years! That’s a long time in todays society..I’m praying many more for you!

  7. Hi, from your neighbor at Journey in Grace. This is such a great reminder and encouragement. Marriage before God is not a throw-away relationship. It is a huge commitment and it is lots of hard work. God is faithful to encourage us and draw us back to Him to receive what we need when our spouse can’t or doesn’t supply it. We have to keep our eyes on Him!! He is with us through all of the ups and downs. He is faithful. He leads us through the valleys, He restores our souls. May He continue to bless your marriage.

    1. Amen, Cheryl! I love what you said, “Marriage before God is not a throw-away relationship.” Man that’s good! SO so true! Oh how I wish our world saw it that way too. Sadly, our world longs for convenience and ease (I am guilty of this too) and if marriage is too hard, why not just divorce and find someone better, right? God’s ways are so much more rewarding though! He is faithful yes and he restores our souls!

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