Interview with author Cindy Beall
What should a wife do when she finds out her husband has been having an affair? How can a couple weather a storm of this size?
We hear questions like this all the time. This is why I was excited when I learned Cindy Beall was writing a book about her experience in this area. Over two years ago I was introduced to Cindy through her blog. There she told the amazing story of her husband’s porn addiction and adultery, and the way God miraculously healed their marriage and relationship. Shortly after, I interviewed them for our podcast, and her husband Chris wrote a chapter in our e-book for pastors who struggle with pornography.
I asked her if she could tell us a little more about her book.
1. For those you don’t know your story, give us your “elevator pitch.” If you had 30 seconds to share what this book is about, how would you describe it?
My book, Healing Your Marriage When Trust Is Broken, is about the near death of my marriage. In early 2002, my husband, who was a worship pastor, confessed that he’d been unfaithful to me and that one of the women was pregnant with his child. Through my husband and me totally surrendering our lives and plans, God brought us through it and now we are doing more than surviving…we are thriving!
2. Why did you decide to write out your story for others to read?
I knew within the first year of our marriage struggle that I was supposed to write this book because there were few resources for me when I was going through this. Since that time, I’ve lost count of the couples who’ve contacted me asking for guidance and support through their own marriage struggles. I knew this book was my way to share all that we’d endured and to proclaim the greatness of our God.
3. As best as you understand it, how did Chris’ habit of viewing pornography spiral out of control and turn into a secret life of adultery?
Sin breeds sin. It always progresses. Always. What enticed Chris in the early days of his pornography addiction changed as the years went on. Simple pornographic pictures no longer fulfilled his desire. He had to have more to satiate his sick hunger. Eventually, he went deeper and deeper into his sin and acted out physically on more than one occasion.
4. It sounds like your church was instrumental in helping you and Chris after the truth came out. Give us some highlights: How did your church come through for you in most difficult times?
Our church literally saved our marriage. Our pastor, Craig Groeschel, led the way by challenging our congregation to be a hospital for us instead of a courtroom. And they did. The couple who walked through the entire process with us was on staff at LifeChurch.tv. They were literally with us on a daily basis for the first few months. I am 100% certain that without our pastor’s and church’s support, our marriage would have been just another divorce statistic.
5. How do people react when they learn you and Chris have a good relationship with Ben, Chris’ son, and with his mother, Michelle?
Most of the time people’s jaws drop and then they say, “I don’t know if I could do what you’ve done.” I get it. What I talk about really seems far-fetched. Outlandish, almost. But, I also know that our God is the God of the impossible. He raises dead things back to life and heals people from all sorts of devastation. God healed my heart and gave me love for a little boy who didn’t decide how he entered our world. Is that so hard to believe? Because that is exactly what He did and I praise Him for that!
6. What measures has Chris put in place to help regain your trust? What does “accountability” look like in Chris’ life now?
When Chris and I began the process of healing, he told me, “I don’t expect for you to ever trust me again but I am going to work for the rest of my life to regain it.” And he has done just that. Nothing is off limits for me – his computer, cell phone, social media accounts – nothing. He doesn’t get defensive and willingly complies with anything I ask of him. Which honestly, isn’t much because he’s such an open book with me.
Accountability is very necessary for his continued freedom. His computer and cell phone are monitored by Covenant Eyes software, which provides reports to me, his best friend and his boss every week. Anytime that I have a question about a website he visited, he sits down with me and we discuss it together. His best friend cares deeply not just for Chris, but for our marriage. He is a wonderful force in Chris’ life and pushes him to be a better man. I’m thankful to say that Chris has been living in freedom since his confession and has genuinely been freed from the bondage of pornography, which is an incredibly awful epidemic.