LILY Letter 58: Faith Crisis and the Dark Side of Agency

May 17, 2022

One of the most important things divorcees understand that many other people don't to the same degree is that agency has a dark side. It is wonderful when we make choices in relationships that lead to happiness and success. It is miserable when others make decisions that hurt us and we have no say in the matter. From the man whose wife says "I love you but I'm not in love with you" and leaves him for another man, to the husband who makes the choice to view pornography and cheat on his wife, agency has the potential to leave us scarred and broken. I've heard many divorced members of the Church say that "agency bites!"

However, agency means that we "are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil” (2 Nephi 2:27). And some people we love choose "captivity and death" despite our best efforts to persuade them otherwise. Most of the people who read this have had their hearts broken by a spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, or a child we love. This can lead to a crisis of faith for many, which we discuss more in depth in this week’s video.

The good news for us is that we also have agency and can choose how we respond when we are hurt. It is best when we work from a realistic point of view so we can accept whatever new reality we are faced with, make wise choices accordingly, and begin the process of healing. We can make the choice to offer unconditional love (not unconditional marriage), even when we are hurt or betrayed. We can greet the dark side of agency with choices that open up our lives to the light of God's love--even when others have chosen something else. The good news of the gospel is that we have a Savior who has provided, through his infinite atonement, all the healing power we need to counter the hurtful effects of the dark side of human agency.

FEATURED THIS WEEK

LILY Pod Episode 70: The Dark Side of Agency (36min)

LILY Tube Video: Faith Crisis and Divorce (20min)

LILY Tube Short: Faith Crisis Silver Lining (1min)

In this week’s podcast, we discuss the dark side of agency. For all who have ever experienced divorce against your most sincere efforts and wishes, you have likely learned this as deeply as we did. In our weekly video, we share the many reasons divorce can cause a faith crisis and how to intentionally use that for your highest and greatest good. Our featured short is a quick snippet on the silver linking that can come from a crisis of faith.

To get a copy of "Intentional Courtship" on Amazon and create more love in your life in 2022, visit Intentional Courtship.

If you enjoy this letter, forward to a friend. Our goal is to support as many mid-singles and later-married couples as possible!

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