Absolute Forgiveness: Sue’s Story

Written by Jean Blackmer

faith_absforgivenessOh no, not again. Sue screamed in her mind as David stumbled in drunk. I can’t take this anymore. Sue’s heart beat faster as the anger inside her bubbled up reaching the point of explosion. Grabbing his white button down shirt, Sue ripped it open and began beating on his chest with both fists screaming at him, “Who do you think you are treating me like this! You’re not the man I married.”

Sue and David were high school sweethearts. They married young and had four children. During this time David completed dental school, worked hard and now had an extremely successful dental practice. But this success came at a high price. Through the years David had developed the habit of drinking too much. Now, he spent more time with his buddies nursing a beer than being with his family. Alcohol controlled him.

David, so intoxicated, couldn’t even react to her outrage. He mumbled something about being sorry.

“Sorry isn’t enough.” Sue railed. The smell of alcohol emanating from his pores nauseated her.

David fell onto their bed, without even changing his clothes and lapsed into a deep drunken sleep. Sue cried herself to sleep again.

After years of dealing with David and his drinking problem, Sue finally decided she must leave him. The final straw happened on their daughter’s 8th birthday. Sue had invited two families to go ice-skating and then come to their home for cake. “David, where are you going?” Sue asked, suspiciously as he grabbed his jacket and headed out the front door. “It’s Sunday and it’s only ten in the morning.” A sense of dread filled her, her mouth felt dry, and she tried to close the door and direct him into the kitchen.

“I’m just walking over to Stan’s house for a few minutes,” David said as he re-opened the door, and slipped his arms into the jacket sleeves.

“Today’s Ann’s birthday party. We’re going ice-skating at one and then coming back here for cake, the Johnsons and the Robertsons are celebrating with us.”

“I’ll be back for ice-skating, don’t worry hon. I wouldn’t forget my own daughter’s birthday,” David gave Sue a quick peck on the cheek, smiled his confident smile, and walked out the door.

David missed the ice-skating. Sue called him and pleaded with him to come home for cake. He didn’t show up. When David finally came home he found Sue in their bedroom packing her bags to leave.

“Sue, wait…” David bolted from the bedroom and out the front door. She heard him gagging and spitting as he vomited in the front bushes. She covered her mouth and shut her eyes trying to shut out the image of who and what David had become.

David returned to the bedroom, wiping the spit on his chin with his sleeve, “I know I’m an alcoholic. I know I need help. Will you give me one more chance?” He pleaded.

Sue sat down on the bed and began to cry. Oh God, I want to help David, but I can’t take this anymore. Help me to know what to do. David lay down on the bed, the familiar smell of alcohol once again filled the room. As Sue looked at David and prayed, a vision of Christ suffering on the cross entered her mind.

“David, you know how I’ve started going to that women’s Bible study. Well, I’ve been learning about Jesus Christ’s sacrifice and what he did so that our sins would be forgiven. I guess if Jesus could die a painful death for me, and forgive me of my sins, then I can try and forgive you. I love you, but you’ve got to get help.”

David didn’t change overnight. It took him one and a half years to quit drinking alcohol totally. Sue immersed herself in the Bible and talked to God constantly and kept asking God to help her see David as the man God saw, not a man encumbered by his addiction.

After each relapse, David would get back up and recommit himself to try again. His sincere efforts kept Sue’s hope alive.

Finally, after an annual fly-fishing trip with his buddies, David returned home with the usual puffy, red eyes and pale skin of the man who drank too much.

“Sue, I can’t do this on my own.”

He slowly climbed the stairs to their bedroom, but instead of collapsing into a deep slumber, he knelt at the foot of the bed, lay his head down on his folded hands and wept. “Jesus,” he cried out. “I can’t change. I need Your help. I need You in my life, please help me beat my alcoholism.” Unexplainably a sense of peace and calm swept over David and he felt another presence in the room. He looked around and didn’t see anything yet he felt a power surge through him, giving him the strength to change. To never take another drink. Filled with hope, he went downstairs to tell Sue about his supernatural experience.

“Sue, I committed my life to Christ just now and asked him to help me never drink another drop of alcohol. I can’t explain it but I felt like He was in the room with me. I know I can change, I can beat my alcoholism.”

Sue cried as she clung to David.

Together, they started over. They made new friends and fell in love with each other all over again. David never drank another drop of alcohol.

But there was still one more thing Sue didn’t know – one more iniquity requiring her absolute forgiveness. Driving to the mountains for a romantic weekend alone, David knew he had to tell Sue about a one-time affair he had during a drunken binge.

When they arrived at the cabin, David, with trembling hands, turned off the car’s ignition. He couldn’t look at Sue for a long moment; then, finally, he faced her and, with his eyes filled with tears, softly said, “Sue, I have a confession to make. I’ve asked God for forgiveness, but I never thought I should ask you. One time when I was drunk I slept with another woman. I am sorry. I was so drunk and it only happened one time. Can you forgive me for this?”

Stunned, Sue was speechless. Lord, what do I do now? How do I handle this? “David, I don’t know what to say…. I need to be alone.” Tears streaming down her cheeks, she grabbed her Bible, hiked up the mountainside and sat on a secluded rock. “God, I feel so hurt and defiled. How could he do this to me? How many times do I have to forgive this man?” All alone, she cried out to God for hours.

Again she felt God tell her that she should forgive David just as Christ had forgiven her. Sue climbed down off that rock and went to find David in the cabin.

“David, I’m hurt beyond words. I didn’t think I could forgive you of this, but with God’s help I will try,” she said. The hurt took time to heal. Although Sue had said she forgave David the pain and emotions would crop up and threaten to discourage her. During these times she determined to not allow her mind to dwell on the pain. Whenever thoughts about David and his sin against her entered her mind she would imagine Jesus standing at a chalkboard with junk scribbled all over it. Then Jesus would take an eraser and erase all the junk, making the chalkboard completely clean. Sue focused on the clean slate and kept reminding herself that the eraser had done its work.

Gradually, her hurt feelings faded, and were replaced with feelings of love and commitment. Thirty years later, David still hasn’t tasted a drop of alcohol. Sue and David have a vibrant marriage. They work together in his dental practice and counsel married couples in their church. On a scale of 1 to 10, Sue says their marriage is a 15.

“If your spouse asks you for forgiveness, you need to give it like Christ forgave – absolutely. Your marriage will be better than you could ever imagine,” says Sue who knows from experience.

Is there anything you’ve done that you feel is unforgivable? Or is there someone you need to forgive? Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice for all our sins. The Bible says that Jesus died for our sins once and for all, He died for the righteous and the unrighteous, to bring us to God. If you ask Jesus to forgive your sins he promises he will. And he will help you forgive others who have hurt you. How would your life be different if you knew all your sins were forgiven forever?

You can receive Jesus right now by faith through prayer. Praying is simply talking to God. God knows your heart and is not so concerned with your words as He is with the attitude of your heart. Here’s a suggested prayer:

Lord Jesus, I want to know you personally. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life to you and ask you to come in as my Savior and Lord. Take control of my life. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Make me the kind of person you want me to be.

Does this prayer express the desires of your heart? You can pray it right now, and Jesus will come into your life, and forgive you of your sins forever, just as he promised.

9 Responses to “Absolute Forgiveness: Sue’s Story”

  • La says:

    I was wondering if Sue had asked God to reveal David’s affair to her. Was she suspicious of the affair? I know that she knew about the alcohol, but did she question his infidelity? I know that she prayed that David would be healed from his alcohol addiction; did she also pray that he would be healed of the sex addiction? ~ Reason, If I am suspicious of my husband’s behaviour, should I be asking God to reaveal it to me? I have done this, and now I am being patient in waiting… When it is revealed, I will forgive Him, but he is now walking w/ Jesus, and we’re not equally yoked. I will not worry, as I immediately give it all to God, and He takes care of me…. but I do wonder where this is all going. I have reason to believe that he has an issue w/ not only alcohol, but w/ other vises, which I won’t even mention. I have been listening very intently to the Holy Spirit, and I know when Jesus want’s it revealed to me, then it’s going to be right there for me to easily see. Just like it was for Sue in this article. I can make it hard, but my choice is to wait on the Lord, and His guidance. He is making the wait much easier for me, as I immediately give every single situation to Him the very first thing each morning. My focus is my walk w/ Jesus, and He is all I need. It’s all about Him, not me. :)

  • Melonie says:

    I too, believe my husband is having an affair and have asked the Lord to reveal this to me. i believe it has been going on for several years and I do not believe that this is his first affair. How can someone live life as a lie?

  • Candice Fast says:

    Melonie, we at Power to Change provide an opportunity for you to have a private conversation with one of our mentors. You may wish to speak to someone further as you walk through this difficult time in your life. Click here to talk to a mentor today.

  • Alisia says:

    My husband is an alcoholic but he us in denial and blames be for his problems and us verbally abusive. I keep asking God for strength to endure another day and it I literally lean on a prayer to make it through each day. He doesn’t say sorry. He’s nothing like this man in this story and I’m sure he will cheat on me some day. Is God going to being change and healing or do I need to get my kids out of here and leave The hurt is very deep

  • Alisia says:

    My husband is an alcoholic but he is in denial and blames me for his problems and is verbally abusive. I keep asking God for strength to endure another day and I literally lean on a prayer to make it through each day. He doesn’t say sorry. He’s nothing like this man in this story and has no remorse. I’m sure he will cheat on me some day. Is God going to bring change and healing or do I need to get my kids out of here and leave? The hurt is very deep

  • Chris says:

    alisia…sorry to hear about your situation. although the bible doesnt mention specifically living with a drunkard, one thing is clear from 1 Timothy 5.8, that the man is to supply for the needs of the family which is the first question here. if he isnt, then a possible 1 corinthians 7.10 to 11 temporary seperation might be in order as you pray to jesus for direction. proverbs 3.5 to 6. we cant judge anyone for any possible future sins they might commit however. all we can do is deal with their present. be sure for yourself, that you do have a saving relationship with jesus christ so you can know how to deal with your husbands situation according to his personal guidance. you can log onto knowingjesuspersonally.com or click talk to a mentor above for information on how to do that. if you do know christ savingly, then be sure you are in a strong church and have pastoral guidance and prayer also. i can check on a church for you if you need me to. i pray that jesus would come to your home, visit each member and free your husband from the chains of alcoholism in jesus name amen

  • Callie says:

    I have spent over a decade now trying to get my husband to forgive keeping him in a sexless marriage as a way to get him to be the one to see to needs in society. It all started in 1985 when he returned from the navy, With more than 60 percent of his plants 7500 person work force in Seniority. He came back to very scared people that his wants when he came back would disrupt the lives they hoped for Taking shifts, jobs, vacations, holidays, and weekends others wanted.

    So I was actually begged into refusing sex to my husband after being gone three and a half years under water on submarines, I was supposed to be the reward for his cooperation. I agreed much to my regret, because everything that came up somebody needed or wanted they would run to me and beg me to extend my promise out to 3 decades. Until he became so depressed he tried to die by compromising his Immune system and developed MRSA in His spine. I never thought it would cause his crippling. His father said he did not have the right to become so depressed, eventually he would have had the time off he wanted in retirement, I thought it was to late for a family when he came home from rehab three years later. I had had several affairs with no birth control or protection, but when he came home he was walking with a cane. He came home enraged after thinking about how he had been kept from his rights from 1985 to 2009, He felt we used blackmail and force to steal his life. Keep him working and let everyone else have what was due him. Make him a slave. It wasn’t supposed to go on so long. I had hundreds of broken promises to get him to work holidays, not take a vacation or not take a nice weekend off. And he hated me and his father and resented us to the heavens, Two weeks after he came home he destroyed one of my affair partners for an attempted humiliation. He beat him so bad that three years later he still cries over how my husband kept hitting him. The stay in the stress center did not solve anything. His doctors there felt my husband had been abused by me, his father and our friends.
    And when he came home the second he walked through the door, He was determined I had nothing to say any longer about our sex life, His father had nothing to input on his defiance to society. And with what he had left he was not giving us an inch of leeway. I was supposed t go to a social function the night he came home, I tried giving him money and a way to talk to us in four hours to try and get something worked out. By meeting us after the event, HE was not going to allow it.
    He had his way with me begging to stop on the floor, I still cry that it came to his setting himself against us. And he’s set himself totally against us. Willing to hurt us over his rights.
    And now finding we don’t have a leg to stand on to get him to stop. we have to let him have his way.

  • Sharon says:

    good article thank you for the article

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