For months I've been praying for my husband's heart to return to the Lord. For Niel to feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
For the consequences of his decisions and actions to open his eyes to how deceived he's become.
For him to hit rock bottom.
For God to do whatever it takes to get his attention.
But if I'm being most honest, I wasn't as concerned with Niel's repentance as I was with him feeling the weight of what he's done.
The reality is that I sometimes still want him to hurt like I've hurt, more than I want him to live forgiven and free.
I've had to come face-to-face with the double-standard of my heart.
Because my struggle to genuinely pray not only for Niel's repentance but also for his forgiveness really only means one thing---
I don't realize just how much I've been forgiven for.
I want to accept the work of the cross for my sins, but not for my husband's.
As if my sins have been lesser.
Or even fewer.
When they are neither.
"...God's kindness leads you toward repentance."
I remember gasping out loud when I saw that verse as if with new eyes.
And I've wrestled with Him long and hard over the implications of it.
It has taken me a very long time to get to this point, but I've begun praying---with tear-filled eyes still---for God's kindness to lead Niel to repentance.
I've started asking God to smother him with His goodness and grace and mercy.
Some days it's easier to pray that way than others.
Some days I can't at all.
On those days, I just sit in the reality of what it truly means.
And I pray for God's kindness to lead me to repentance.