Juniper Berries, and my Bible

My parents moved 200 miles to get away from the Juniper Cedar tree, (also known as Mountain Ash or Mountain Cedar, but not scientifically a cedar).  My mother went to an allergist for two years and took shots and therapies to boost her defenses and get relief from her itchy eyes, and runny nose, that the Juniper Cedar's pollen solicits from her immune system.  There are some folks I know, who will eat juniper berries (bitter and not tasty) according to a daily prescription routine in order to support their immune systems fight of this local, vicious  and  common allergen.  These folks know, that what we ingest, effects our immune defense system. They are seeking strength and victory over the problem.

I want to share with you about a time that I needed strength and victory in my marriage, but I was so sick, and Iow, that I did not even ask, expect, or dare to hope.  For 9 months, our family was splintered and expecting divorce, with parents living separately.

Here, now, I will not go in to the whys or specific background except to say that we were both at fault.  To the purpose of my testimony here, I will share that, while my husband lived and worked in a town hours away from us, he asked, (school teacher me), "Will you bring the kids here, and stay with them so I can enjoy them after work (your first week of summer vacation)?"

I thought, "Well if we get a divorce, I will probably have to turn the children over to him.... and have no choice, so YES I can do this..... and I shall."

This is how the healing came.

I took our children to his apartment 4 hours away, with our suitcases packed with clothes, bedding, and my Bible.  I went thinking, "I am going to cook, do dishes, support visits, read my Bible.  That is all."

And that is pretty much what I did.  When he was at work, the kids and I tried to busy ourselves with books and games, walks and visits to the playground, and when their dad came home, they swam together in the apartment pool, played more games, watched dvd movies.  I cooked, cleaned, watched my children have fun with their dad, and I READ MY BIBLE.  When I had no busy-ness, then I READ MY BIBLE.

I read my Bible like it was medicine and I was sick and I needed medicine.  I was sick. 

 I did not even ask for healing, because I had zero hope.  I just read my Bible.  At the beginning of my week there, supporting the visit, I kept thinking, "I am not looking forward to the process, but I WANT A DIVORCE.  I want to get it behind me."

I kept reading my Bible.  The kids kept playing with their dad, having a good time.  Reading my Bible in big wonderful doses, that's good medicine!  Perhaps it was Bible reading combined with my husbands prayers......... At the end of our week at his apartment, there had been a change in my thinking.  Then, I thought,"I don't want to get a divorce," but then the voice of worldly reason chimed in,"Tammy, don't tell Paul that you don't want to get a divorce because..........this feeling, this is not going to last.  It is temporary.  You can't be healed of all the pain, and besides, do you really want to subject yourself to all of this (what happened in the past) all over again, where history repeats itself, and you get hurt again, or you go through the same terrible mess all over again only you are OLDER??"  Good worldly logic right there!

No I did not want to go through it all over again, only later down the road!!  I kept my possible healing to myself.  Didn't utter a word about it to anybody.  After all I was NOT giving in to healing over voice of reason.  

We finished our week at my children's father's apartment as he requested.  They had a nice time.  We said our good byes, and came home.  This second week of summer vacation back at  my house, was devoted to cleaning and organizing of my own home, while the children enjoyed the comforts and conveniences of their own spaces.  Again between chores and obligations, I READ MY BIBLE, still not letting go of my fear of the future if I allowed myself to stay in this marriage.

For another entire week (that adds up to two weeks of intense BIBLE reading therapy), not only did my heart feel healed of the pain and anger, but also the FEAR.  Pain and anger were gone with out a trace, and in place of fear, the Holy Spirit sent HOPE, wonderful HOPE, and actually PEACE and comfort in my heart.  The future was no longer threatening and scary.

The next time my husband came to visit the children, I told him, "God has healed my heart completely, and I have HOPE of a new beginning."

My husband just smiled and hugged me.  We negotiated terms, which we believed would help us be successful.  The marriage road has not been easy for us, but  I can honestly say that I have never regretted trying again, with Paul, my husband.  The 6 years since our reconciliation have actually been the best, my favorite years of marriage.  I love him more today than ever, and I will always believe that in God's mercy and grace, He gave me a miraculous healing.  

 I share this story now, hoping to bring hope and encouragement to someone, and to glorify and honor the Father and His word.  It is the best medicine!... more powerful than the juniper berries, to boost the defenses toward victory.

1 Timothy 4:4-6 applied and emphasized by me, for me:
For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused  if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. 

I understand that the above scripture is not referencing to marriage in context, but never the less, I see that God's word has the power, along with prayer, to sanctify.

I had planned for divorce.  God's word and prayer provided sanctification and healing.  There simply are no limits to our God.

6 years after the separation, happily married, and grateful,

Grandma Mary Martha 💖


  1. I love this story of reconciliation! Thank you for sharing and being vulnerable!

    1. Lori, thank you thank you thank you for taking the time to share a validating appreciative comment, because this was from my heart and difficult to share actually. I wanted to give God glory in an open way. It is the truth of my family, and I am GRATEFUL.

  2. Dearest Tammy,
    Praise God! He didn't allow to grow a weed of bitterness into your marriage. This is a good example of grace-based marriage and that's also because you have opened your heart for healing and restoration. Thank you for reminding me also that the sweetest balm to cure our spiritual sickness is God's Word alone. I confessed that many times I failed to remain faithful to God during storms of life. I had let bitterness and among other sinful things to grow into my heart because I was in so much pain. I am thankful that our Lord is the Lord of mercy, grace, and love. He also didn't allow me to falter.
    Our marriage wasn't always in bliss. Because of many domestic problems occurred, I have also thought of annulling my marriage. The fear of the Lord is what keeps my feet from running away from this covenant. He also showed my vulnerability isn't a weakness but a pathway for me to see His strength is within me.
    I AM HAPPY FOR YOU! I pray for stronger, lovelier, and sweeter bond for you and your husband Paul.

    1. Thank you for your kind support, and prayer. Yes, there is power in God's Word. With Him, there is hope. I rejoice for the grace and growth that He has given both of us.

  3. God bless you for sharing a very personal part of you that brings us all so much blessings and peace. It is just so wonderful how the Word healed you deep within and also around you. Marriage is not easy...we have been through some of the worst bouts of pain, anger, words that hurt...and at one point, it seemed nearly over..then I just started praying...pouring out and yes reading the Word also but that season was prayer, and things turned around marvelously and far stronger today than it was years back. Thank you for sharing this, it was beautiful and strengthening and I also believe marriage is a covenant so if we pray, God honors and keeps it together. (By the way, I have linked your blog to mine :))

  4. Thank you Rita, for sharing in our gratitude of thanksgiving and joy for what God has done. We are blessed that God strengthened our marriage. I will say, that I proceed with humility, and love and compassion rather than judgement, for people who do not experience the healing as we did........and feel there is no way to hope of peace except through divorce. We are by nature, flawed creatures, simply in need of salvation and Holy Spirit to grow good works in us. Thank YOU for being an encouragement. I LOVE that as blogging sisters we get to share from the heart.......


Post a Comment