I was the victim of domestic abuse. This was very difficult to admit considering I'm a 200-pound man over 6 feet tall. Me, a victim, how crazy is that! For several years my wife would hit me in the face with her small fists, daring me to hit her back. She even broke a glass vase over my head once in front of my daughter. At other times, she threw wooden chairs and ripped my clothes. I had been taught not to hit back, so I never did.

As a form of protection, I would sometimes hold her back from hurting me or herself. When I did, she would call the police on me for restraining her. Looking back, I should have told the police everything, but I loved her too much and was afraid to lose her.

When my stepson became a teenager, he mimicked his mom's behavior toward me and also turned on his mom at times. And our little girl was caught in the middle of this horrible cycle. There was no peace in our home.

But I was not without fault in this marriage. I kept credit card bills from my wife. I loved her too much to let her know that I couldn't afford all the nice items we owned. In many ways, I feel like I was trying to buy her love and buy some peace. Instead, I now have tens of thousands of dollars in debt to credit card companies.

In July 2003, my wife surprised me with my divorce papers. I have never been so devastated.

Shortly after the papers were served, my wife took my daughter from me. My little girl was told I was bad and that Daddy never loved her. I was served a restraining order and kicked out of my home and my daughter's life without notice or just cause.

I could not understand why life is so unfair, why bad things happen to good people, injustices occur and rewards are given to those who have wronged you. There is no happy ending to a divorce. How can a death of a family be anything by unhappy?

Through these troubles, however, the one constant I had was my faith in God, and an overwhelming understanding of His unfailing love. I have felt great pain, hurt, disappointment and anger, and yet my trust in God continues to pull me through this hell of each and every day.

Prayer has also been a great source of strength. Communicating with God gives me a peace that my Lord will never leave me. Do I question God? Yes, but not because I don't trust Him. I am human with faults and weaknesses. I know all about worry, guilt and sadness. There are times when I wonder if these thoughts will ever leave me and be replaced by thoughts of goodness and hope. Then I look at my daughter, my little glimpse of heaven, and am reminded of God's unfailing love. How good is God to have given her to me.

I share my story so that others may find hope, comfort and even a small bit of peace in my experiences. I no longer wish terrible things for my soon-to-be ex wife. It is my prayer that one day I will be able to share with her the peace of God I've experienced.

Giving your trouble to God is not easy. My recommendation is to just pray and pray some more. My situation was horrible, and there are days when I still don't know if I'll make it through. At those times, I stop and pray, leave it with God and trust Him. This world is sometimes harsh and cruel, without meaning and void of hope. People and family can disappoint you, but God will not.

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