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    Stories of infidelity are not really considered new or unusual these days. In fact, they have sadly become quite commonplace, and even “sensationalized” with TV shows on local channels gaining a strong following.

    Whether on screen or off screen though, the reality is that when it comes to extramarital affairs, nobody wins. Many times, such affairs end tragically, with marriages (and families) breaking up, or “the other woman” feeling shattered or useless, and getting trapped in a cycle of co-dependency.

    Thankfully, though, not all extramarital relationships have a bad outcome. Sometimes, God intervenes and gives the people involved a chance for a fresh start.

    Such was the case with Liza (not her real name). This is her story of redemption.

    How it all started
    "I think I was 28 then. The affair began when I was transferred at work to a department where I found male friends or barkada. I found a confidante during the times when I was having problems with my ex,” Liza shares. “Eventually, we became too close for comfort and ended up together, despite him being married.”

    “The affair lasted for nine years on and off. At first, it was a total secret, but later on, my whole family learned about it, and they almost disowned me,” she continues.

    Blinded by “love”
    “During the course of our relationship, I was happy and sad at the same time,” Liza shares. “I was happy because I felt ‘loved.’ I was sad because I was not sure if I could have him beside me forever.”

    “I realize now how selfish and conceited I was,” she continues. “I thought I was happy being ‘loved’ by a man whom I thought I could have despite his status as a married man with two daughters. I was conceited because I thought I was more beautiful than his wife.”

    “I didn’t want to end the affair because I was so blinded. Eventually, different circumstances led to us parting ways,” Liza confesses. “He betrayed me, saying that it was I who was insisting that we continue with the affair, when it was always he who kept coming back when things between us got tough.”

    A mother’s love and prayers
    Liza says that her mother also played an important role in her redemption story. “My mom's unfailing love and prayers led me to what I am now,” she shares. “I never imagined how wonderfully blessed I could be with God's unconditional love. Indeed, nothing is impossible with Him.”

    “I believe my mom's prayers made me change my ways. After the affair, I started coming back to God and praying hard,” Liza discloses. “I went to Our Lady of Perpetual Help and did the novenas, praying that I might find the man really intended for me, because I was tired of being so blinded and getting hurt.”

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    A happy life as a happy wife
    Liza’s prayers were eventually answered. She is now happily married, and with two children of her own. Her husband knows of her past but accepts her just the same. “I didn’t want anyone else to tell him,” she adds. “I believe in the saying, ‘The truth will set you free,’ and he accepts me despite my past.”

    Liza goes on to encourage women like her who may be in the same situation as she was in years ago. “I know not everyone who has been through problems like this will be brave enough to admit it, but I am happy and proud of how the power of prayers works miracles in our lives,” she says.

    “Ultimately, we should remember that we ought to live by God’s commandments. They are instructions for us to follow,” Liza adds. “I always tell my kids, ‘Instructions are made to keep you safe. God's commandments are there to keep us safe from sin, getting lost, from pain.”

    In the midst of your darkest days, remember that God can make all things new. He can redeem us even from our most secret sins, and use people around us to help us change our ways — just as He used Liza’s mom.

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