Living in the “How Long, O Lord?s”

How long, O Lord? Will You forget me forever?

How long will my enemy be exalted over me?

-Psalm 13:1a, 2b, NKJV


I hate the feeling of powerlessness. And the author of this Psalm gives voice to this feeling well. He writes about feeling forgotten by God. And he writes about watching his enemies triumph over him as he watches helplessly.

He pleads with God:

How long, O Lord?

Discovering adultery reminds us how vulnerable and weak we are. We are reminded that we do not control the choices of the other person.

And it is frightening.

We might try to grasp onto the illusion of power. Others might even join us in this feeble attempt to perpetuate the myth that the naked emperor is really clothed. However, the truth is that the only person able to ensure your spouse remains faithful is your spouse. They alone choose for good or ill, and no one else for them. That includes you–i.e. their spouse.

Being a perfectly submissive wife does not ensure your husband will choose fidelity over adultery.

Being a perfectly loving husband and spiritual leader does not ensure your wife will choose fidelity over adultery either.

And if your spouse chooses adultery over infidelity…

It feels like you are wandering in a forever field of “How Long, O Lord?s”

I hate that feeling. And it was a familiar enemy during my dark valleys. I am glad to know such a beloved man, King David, experienced such feelings as well. It is a comfort to know one is not alone. And David’s Psalm 13 teaches us that we can let God know our pain and frustration over this.

I wish I could tell you that all injustice will be righted in this life. However, that is not the world in which we live. It is a world broken by sin and full of injustice. But we are merely pilgrims in this world and belong to a Kingdom where pure righteousness and justice reign. When that King comes to fully claim this earth, then we will see such fulfillment. He will right what has been wrong.

We may catch glimpses of that in this life but the fullness is still coming and we can hold on to that with hope.

We can say with the Psalmist here while we wait:

But I have trusted in your steadfast love;
    my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.

Psalm 13:5, ESV



5 thoughts on “Living in the “How Long, O Lord?s””

  1. Amen, amen. I have found that his adultery is probably the most “pleasant” of his lies, if you can imagine. This has turned into an incredibly nasty divorce…where he as the controlling egocentric individual he is has decided to show me just how mean he can be. He is oblivious to the fact that I do not care anymore. He s given me the gift of praying sincerely for an enemy. But he can t hurt me anymore. Because those are his choices, it is his path. I m tired. I do wonder if it will ever end. But all his mean stuff, all the lies, all the debauchery. It is his, his alone to atone for w God. But I sure he d stop.

    1. Mom three- My husband is incredibly mean too. I didn’t know he had that kind of mean inside of him. That is who they really are behind the mask. Creepy isn’t it? I’m still working on not caring so that makes me very happy for you that you are in that good place. I know I’ll get there. How long since your found out about his infidelity? Today it feels like a very long road. This too shall pass. Right?

      1. BrokenHearted Believer and Mom three,

        Glad to hear, Mom three, you are a place of peace. It is hard not to rise to the attacks or insults. I think what is most helpful is knowing the truth of who we are and what happened then not budging or agreeing to any of the nasty lies that come. I personally have found that helpful for my peace of mind. And it does come, BrokenHearted Believer, but I can’t give you a timeline.

        Blessings & Hugs,

        1. I know I can’t put a timeline too this. I just need to be patient. I am just so tired of the pain and watching my kids struggle. Tough week.

  2. I’m still feeling very powerless. This all started for me when I began to discover some things that very much made it appear that my husband had an affair. We’ve been married over 30 years. For months he honestly wasn’t himself. I would talk to him about it and he would just give me all kinds of excuses. When I discovered some things and confronted him, it was awful. He became very defensive and started lashing back at me. Especially in front of our kids. I let him because I wanted to hear what was in his heart and let me tell you it came out. The last straw was when I caught him in a big lie. He was groveling and back tracking big time. We went for counseling once. He was honestly all over the place and I had to be the one to tell the counselor what we were there for. He was still all over the place. The counselors are trusted friends from another church and he had agreed to it after the last big lie.

    I still don’t have any more proof. Our counselor’s wife called me and asked me how we were doing. I told her that I still don’t have answers for the lies other then the fact that he lied and was sorry. This all happened in September. He has begged my forgiveness for the lies, swore to me several times that there was never an affair and that his biggest lie was all the lies? So now I’m just sitting and waiting. He’s very loving and attentive. I still feel powerless but I know that God knows it all! I’m watching and praying and waiting. Thanks for letting me vent.

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