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Chris Fabry
Married to Andrea since 1982. We have 9 children together and none apart. Our dog's name is Tebow.
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After finding and remediating mold twice in our Colorado home, we abandoned ship in October 2008. Because of the high levels of exposure, our entire family was affected. After months of seeing different specialists for all of the problems, we came to Arizona to begin comprehensive treatment to rid our bodies of the toxic buildup. In August 2009 we moved into a larger home, four bedrooms, south of Tucson, north of Mexico. I am doing my daily radio program/ writing from that location. Thanks for praying for us. We really feel it.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Here are a few responses we received to yesterday's Chris Fabry Live! conversation about admitting infidelity.

I am still dumbfounded about your program today... nothing there convinces me one should “confess” their infidelity after 10 years... It is cruel!!!

That last caller made me upset to say that it's terrible to let your wife know about the adultery. It’s a selfish act in and of itself and then on top of that to not confess your sin is horrendous. You cannot have a relationship built on lies and deceit.

I was there 35 years ago. Some overzealous Christian told my husband to tell me. Thanks a lot!! Now it became also my problem?! We had come through a hard time and had solved all that and were doing well. I forgave him and we continued but even now 35 years later when the question comes up it hurts my soul. LET IT BE!!

Things that are done in the dark will come out in the light. God has given John a chance to come clean on his own, if he believes the whispers of the enemy to stay quiet, and that in doing so he is protecting the so-called nice relationship he and his wife have, he is basing his reality on a lie.

I would have to say that if the person has confessed the affair to the Lord, and repented, then they should trust in God's forgiveness and not let Satan use this mistake in their life to destroy their marriage and their family. Satan is the destroyer and he will destroy as much as he can using guilt to do so. Every situation is different, but if at all possible confess to a trusted, faithful friend who can keep it confidential. We are all responsible for our own mistakes, but don't let Satan take advantage of them by doing horrible damage to your loved ones.

Didn't our Savior Himself say, "You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free?" I've been on both sides of the issue of unfaithfulness, and I believe the truth should be made known! An unfaithful mate is living a lie, and has broken vows made before God and witnesses. The best way to kill a lie is to blast its soil of secrecy away with the Light of Truth! Truth frees! Truth heals!

I enjoy your show, but sometimes wish you wouldn't tease us along with "I have a 5 word question to pose, but I'm not going to ask it yet"... After yesterday's question about the infidelity, I was determined to start listening to past programs on the internet, because I desperately want to hear how this discussion plays out.
(I apologize—the 5 word question that I never gave you is, “What does love look like?”)

As the wife of an unfaithful husband I wanted to comment on John's email. I believe his unease with keeping his affair a secret is the work of the Holy Spirit. While it would be easier on him to not confess and just move on, I don't believe the marriage can be truly healed without confession. Trying to just move on is like putting a bandaid over a dirty wound. The only way to heal a festering wound is to go thru the painful process of opening it up and cleaning it all out. It is an ugly, painful thing to go thru but it is the only path to healing.

I have been through the situation put forth in your discussion today. My opinion is that, unless the guilty person is asked or it is very likely that the incident will come out, the information should not be shared with the "innocent" spouse. I am not a weak or emotional person, nor is my walk with Christ weak. I can forgive and did that with all my heart but forgetting is another thing. I remember thinking many times, his burden and guilty feelings seem gone - they've been passed to me. I believe that telling a spouse simply passes a burden from one to the other.

I've been told that most men have thoughts of sex on a regular basis. In the New Testament, Jesus addresses that sin ("in the heart," which may be somewhat different) as unfaithfulness. Would you tell your wife every wayward thought you have? Or, would your wife tell you of hers?

I speak from personal experience. As a woman whose spouse was unfaithful years ago, I find this to be a very traumatic experience. I believe he should confess to his pastor or a spiritual friend in order to heal personally. There are days that I pray and tell God I wish I never found out about this.

Please, never discourage confession of a sin to the one who has been offended. God cannot bless a marriage where sin is kept in the dark and Satan has the authority to use it to steal, kill and destroy!

Have been listening today and I don't think you need to "hang out your dirty laundry" after so many years. What good is it going to do? Except make you feel better. What bothers me -- is if this man confessed this to our Lord--then why hasn't it been pointed out to him that Satan is the accuser. God has forgiven and "cast it into the deepest ocean and hung up a No Fishing sign."

I was appalled at the various callers who "justified" the lies in their marriages regarding their infidelity by "protecting" their poor fragile spouse, or for the betterment of the marriage. There is NO scriptural basis for lies in a marriage. On the other hand there is an abundance of scripture supporting confessing sin. The notion one is protecting the spouse is nauseatingly self-serving.

It all boils down to this... you have to want to be right with God even more than you want to be right with your wife. God is able to sustain your marriage and make it even stronger after you both work through this together.

I am a Christian Marriage and Family counselor. One of my areas of focus is working with couples where there has been one or more affairs. What I heard you say was something like- if a person is only telling their spouse the truth about a past affair to ease their guilt and put it on their spouse, that this is a selfish reason and they should not do it. What I would say is that all of us develop complicated systems of rationalization around the thoughts and behaviors we have that we don't want to bring out into the light. God tells us to confess. He does not tell us to wait until our motivations are pure. The truth has a way of opening us up to the realities of what is going on inside of us. Without confession our relationships have barriers to healing and we are at risk of repeating these behaviors because we don't experience the pain of consequences nor do we shift our personal boundaries that might strengthen our marriages and our relationship with God. Pain is the greatest motivator for change. Spouses do fall apart, there is anger, and sadness, and distrust, and grief, and shame, and finally hope. It starts with the truth. I feel strongly about this because I have seen God do mighty work in relationships that have been so completely devastated by affairs.


Anonymous said...

I met a man who confessed his one time affair to his wife years later, as encouraged by biblical counselors. He lost his wife and kids. It is so sad for the children. He has moved on but his wife has not.

Ang said...

Four years ago my husband confessed his 10 years of lies and addiction to me. I was dumbfounded that day and destroyed. However, my worst day turned into one of the best freeing day I have had. We have and are still working through all of this. I can say my Lord and Savior is amazing and my husband is amazing! Our marriage is stronger because of the confession and healing we are receiving everyday. It saddens me to think anyone would not want to confess to their spouse. In my opinion fear is the main reason someone would not want to speak the truth. Anyways...that is my two cents!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Chris & Gary Chapman, I have not experenced the topic you are discussing today, but I know people that shared that secret and the results were not positive. In one case the husband turned from God and still to this day has not completely come back to the Lord. In another case recently the wife told the husband and the husband had a DNA test done, the child was not his (he has raised this child every since the child has been into the world & the child is now a teenager) and now he is divorcing his wife. Another instance the husband discovered a child was not his and would not have anything else to do with the child. Maybe each person should consider how will your spouse respond.

Anonymous said...

I told my husband before we got married that if he was unfaithful he better be very discrete and never tell me unless he wanted out of the marriage. That said my husband has a morality that astounds me and I never felt I had anything to worry about. I think it is important for confession to a pastor...but not to the spouse. I believe it is selfish and in the majority of cases has only a negative effect on the marriage.