Lysa TerKeurst says while the devil tried to silence her amid devastating circumstances, including her husband's infidelity and a cancer diagnosis, she’s now more determined than ever to help others cling to hope in the face of tragedy.
“Are there any hurts or parts of your life that you’re afraid you just aren’t ever going to recover from? I deeply understand,” the Proverbs 31 founder wrote in a recent Instagram post. “The difficult journey my family and I have walked through over the past few years isn’t one I ever would have chosen. But God has been showing me He will not waste one bit of our pain.”
“The enemy hoped he could silence me. But I have ended up more determined than ever to help those in the fight of their lives to cling to biblical truth and hope,” she continued.
To help others struggling with devastation or disappointment, TerKeurst teamed up with professional counselor Jim Cress and director of theology at Proverbs 31 Ministries Joel Muddamalle to create a six-week podcast series called “Therapy & Theology: How Do I Get Through This?”
“Over the course of six weeks, we discussed topics like anxiety, forgiveness, restoring a broken marriage, and even how to find redemption when reconciliation isn’t possible,” she said. “We want to help you recognize small steps you can start taking today to get through the hurt.”
In 2017, the It's Not Supposed to Be This Way author revealed she would be divorcing her husband of 25 years after learning of his infidelity — a discovery she called the "worst kind of betrayal." That same year, she announced she'd been diagnosed with breast cancer and would need to undergo a double mastectomy.
But one year later, the popular speaker and author announced she was cancer-free, and she and her husband were working to restore their marriage. They later renewed their vows in a ceremony attended by friends and family.
In the first episode of “Therapy and Theology,” TerKeurst said she’s thankful God has taken the hurt she’s walked through over the last three years to help her connect with people on a deeper level.
“I always say, people can be divided on issues, but we’re quite united with our tears,” she said.
Later in the podcast, TerKeurst reflected on how she’s been able to get through the hurt she faced as a result of her husband’s actions by taking small, intentional steps.
“I will often to say to myself, ‘Lysa, do not dance with the devil’s lies,’ because what happens when I get triggered, is this anxiety wells up in me and feels like suddenly everything's out of control, my brain goes to worst-case scenarios,” she said.
During a previous interview with The Christian Post, TerKeurst said while the previous season of her life was "excruciatingly painful," she's learned that with God, there's "always a meanwhile."
"No matter what I'm feeling today, with God, I can say, 'Meanwhile, God is working good, even if I can't see it,'" she explained. "Knowing that God exists gives me a purpose in the midst of my pain. That elevates my perspective."
"We may not see it for a little while, but God is working good there even in the darkest times," she added. "What you're feeling is real. The circumstances are hard. The solutions may seem very mysterious. You've got questions, you've got pain. But with God, there's another level, and we've got to lift our eyes up and recognize that there's more than just meets the eye."
Life is full of disappointment, she said, and it's important to acknowledge that reality because "pat Christian answers" don't explain away sorrow and pain.
"That's why God calls us to not just have a religion where we're simply following the rules," she said. "God calls us to have a relationship where, when we cannot understand the circumstances of our life, we can still trust Him. We trust a very good God, but we trust a very good God who sometimes allows hurts in our life. He doesn't cause the hurt, but He will allow it."
"We serve a God who will use hurt for good, every single time," she said. "His good may look different than our good, but He is always, always faithful and trustworthy."