Lutherans/Can I be accepted into the Lutheran Faith
I am a divorced mother of four and currently living with a man I intend to marry within the coming year, October 2013. I have great conflicts about this from my faith stand point but now that I have no other choice from a physical view. I have attempted to live on my own, and failed each time. Also, I have great conflicts about divorcing, as I know and believe that marriage is a lifelong promise not only to my partner but to God foremost. how can I make that promise again, if I broke it the first time? Can, with my history of divorce and being unmarried to the man I am living with, I be accepted in the Lutheran faith?
Thank you for your question. I appreciate your struggles to maintain a healthy, life-giving relationship while wondering how it all fits into God's plan for our lives.
IT sounds to me as you have really tried to do what is right and have now found someone with whom you can share your life. I think God is pleased when we find love in the world, and when we give love to another person. While many people cheapen love by finding multiple partners for short periods, it doesn't sound like this is what you are doing at all.
Yes, it is not God's intention that marriage end in divorce--that is God's law. We are, to the best of our ability, to enter into our marriage fully, and remain faithful to that one person for the rest of our lives. We are broken people, however, and we do break God's laws despite our best efforts. Here is where the grace of God enters to embrace us in our brokenness. With God's grace, what is past is past, and we are now called to live in the present and into the future knowing that God's love is greater than our brokenness, and that God does desire that we live full, happy lives.
I would say, if you feel that you have found a new partner with whom you can truly give your life and love to, then by all means enter into that relationship as a "new birth" of God's grace. I think that in most Lutheran churches, the pastor that looks to marry you would wish to talk over your past relationships, and see how they might be something from which you can learn for your present relationship and marriage.
We all are sinners and have broken God's rules many times. While we never want to presume of God's goodness, the grace of God does understand our weaknesses, cleanse us from our guilt, and also give us the power to live a new life in his name.
Blessings on your new year and on your life together!
I hope that this is helpful.