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Scorned Wife Holds Unfaithful Husband’s Life In Her Hands

Rebecca Duvall remembers how she and her husband Robert felt about each other when they married in 2001.  “We see eye to eye on everything. This is the best relationship. We are such a great match for each other,” she said.

Rebecca and Robert had both been married before, but this time around they knew they’d found lasting love.

“I liked that she was independent.  I really had a lot of respect for the fact that she was raising two girls on her own.  That really drew me.  When we first met I told her she was my angel,” said Robert.

Then five years into the marriage they started growing apart.  They now had three children and their responsibilities at work and home had become more demanding.   

“I had noticed that there was definitely something missing in our relationship. I felt that there was something going on that was keeping us apart. There was something not right.  But I chose to ignore it,” said Rebecca.

As it turned out, Robert had started an affair with a female coworker. Rebecca found out when she discovered some texts on his phone.  “I felt betrayed because a lot of the words that I was reading in these texts were similar things that he said to me.  So my heart was just broken,” she said.

Robert had already ended the affair after four months, but the damage was done. “I was ashamed. I was hurt because I saw how I hurt her,” he said.  “There were several times that I tried to build the courage up just to tell her.  I never wanted to be divorced.  I never wanted to leave my family.” 

Rebecca had recently become a Christian.  Unsure of what to do next, she went to a Christian counselor.  “She said, ‘This is your choice. You have a choice whether to walk away or fight for your marriage.’  I knew right then I need to stay and fight,” said Rebecca.

The couple started marriage counseling and felt they were making progress. Then Robert suffered a heart attack.  Over the next several years his health steadily declined and he became dependent on his wife’s care.  “At this point, it started coming out that I had not truly forgiven him.  I wasn’t being the loving wife that I should.  It was still in the back of my mind.  Like…he didn’t deserve the loving care that I was supposed to give him as a wife,” said Rebecca.

After six years, Robert was diagnosed with kidney failure.  He asked Rebecca to get tested to be a donor match.  “I kind of laugh like, No. Why do you have to get me involved?  This is my stuff. I’m good.  How can I care for you if I’m down? This is mine. I’m not sharing,” she said.  But as the months went by with no match for Robert, she realized what she needed to do. “Not forgiving him was stopping me from showing him true love that God would intend for us to.  I was asking God to give me a heart for my husband, to help me love him and that my actions and words would show where my heart was,” said Rebecca.

Rebecca finally agreed to get tested.  “God just really convicted me. Be tested and trust the outcome. So, a few weeks later I get a call from the person in charge of my case. She said, ‘Not only is it a match, but when we put blood types together usually one will try to dominate the other but the two of you, your blood just sat there so harmoniously,” said Rebecca.

The operation was a success and Robert was soon restored to full health. Compelled by Rebecca’s forgiveness, he rededicated his life to Jesus Christ.  “I wanted to pursue God passionately. I wanted to be a man of integrity,” said Robert.

“I forgave him and I meant it in my heart.  I really meant it sincerely, from deep within,” said Rebecca.

“With all the dark things that happened in my life, that was the shinning light for me.  That forgiveness is like taking a big weight off your shoulder and it opened my heart,” said Robert.

Rebecca says when she truly forgave her husband they both received the healing they desperately needed.  “I felt like God had a purpose in what I did.  He restored our marriage and at the same time he restored my husband.  It was like the beginning of the new.  He took us through a valley, but where we ended up was just beautiful,” said Rebecca.

Today Robert is a chaplain for law enforcement and he also counsels married couples.  Rebecca shares their story in her book called In His Way.  The couple says with God at the center of their lives, their marriage is stronger than ever.

“Now our marriage is deeper.  We have a different kind of love and respect.  Back then there wasn’t much hope.  Now we live in the moment, but we also look forward to what God has in store for us. And it’s going to be awesome,” said Robert.

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