By Tim Bennett
Candy Block, CNY resident and author of the recently published book, The Broken Road: Healing After Divorce (2017), by 5 Fold Media, said to me during our interview that her path to healing from a broken marriage was not easy. In fact, in her case, she said, “It probably took four years.” As co-leader of the Divorce Care group of North Syracuse Baptist Church since 2013 with her current husband, Bob, she was quick to add, “But God has his own time frame for each person and you don’t want to rush it. It takes time for a complete healing, but we can see changes in people after three or four sessions.” The Divorce Care group follows a widely-used, 13-week video teaching course that addresses such topics as: Anger, Loneliness, Single Sexuality, New Relationships, Forgiveness, Finances, among others. The biggest things Block said she wrestled with, after her 2008 divorce, were the overpowering feelings of rejection and all the thoughts of self-incrimination like: What did I do wrong? Did I do everything I could to save the marriage? Am I pretty enough? What if I could’ve had children?
When Block initially met her first husband, however, the words “marriage” and “divorce” were far from her mind. She was working in the cash room of a local department store one day and this man showed up, leaned against the counter, and said nonchalantly, “Hey, you wanna get married?” He was big, with several tattoos, and had an earring adorning his left ear lobe. Definitely, not my type, Block thought at the time. Sounds like a ladies’ man. She responded to him honestly: “Yeah, but not with you.” Little by little, however, she began seeing more of him since he worked at the same store. They talked during breaks. They ate lunch together. They shared confidences. They dated. They agreed to marry. They lived together for five years. They married.
The warning signs, however, were there at the beginning — the constant arguing about money, the calls to the other women on his cell phone, the lies, and his obsession with hunting. Block said he flatly told her one time: “If I had to make a choice between you and hunting, I would pick hunting.” Although Block confessed that she was raised as a Catholic, she was not a Christian during most of her relationship with her ex-husband. In desperation more than anything else, she began asking Christians for prayer for her marriage at The Healing Rooms of Syracuse in Liverpool and people from the TV organization, The 700 Club. When she finally did invite Christ into her life, she was convinced God was going to save her marriage. “Instead of saving my marriage, though,” Block said, “He saved me.” The final blow to the marriage came one night when she came home from work and sensed that she should look in the center console of her husband’s car. She did, and found another cell phone with multiple calls to the same woman.
Block compared her road to recovery and healing from divorce to riding on a roller coaster. “Everything can be going fine and then all of a sudden you see something in a store or on TV and it triggers all those old feelings and you start crying, or you get depressed and you start reliving things all over again.”
As far back as 2009, Block said she started writing about her experiences. “I had a dream one night where a Scripture was mentioned but I did not know what it meant,” Block said. “I shared it with some people at The Healing Rooms and a counselor there said that it had to do with telling people what the Lord has done for you. I started writing and I felt encouraged that a book by an ordinary person to ordinary people could be a powerful tool the Lord could use.”
In her book, Block shares honestly about her experiences, mistakes, and the major issues many people deal with on their journey to recovery and
healing from divorce. She also gives the Scriptures that helped her through and some profound statements by others. For example, under the title, Chapter 10, Unforgiveness: The Spiritual Poison, she includes this interesting thought: Unforgiveness is like drinking a poison and expecting someone else to die from it (Author unknown). Another quote by Mother Theresa under Chapter 9: A New Relationship, Not a Cure for Loneliness reads: The most terrible poverty is loneliness and the feeling of being unloved.
Some advice Block gives to those recovering from divorce include: Focus on your relationship with God and allow Him to heal you in His time frame; Don’t isolate yourself: Surround yourself with godly people (same-sex, mature Christians); Go through the 13-week course (more than once) Divorce Care series; Find a Bible-believing church; and meditate on His Word.
One of the most dramatic recoveries Block has seen from her Divorce Care Group was a lady who was planning to commit suicide but saw the Divorce Care Group written on the church marquis while she was riding by and decided to give the course a try. Although she would cry during most of the sessions the first time through, she went through the series again and is now fully recovered and going on with her life.
I asked Candy Block what she would like readers to take away from her book. She said, “There is hope, and you do not have to be defined by your past.”
The Broken Road: Healing After Divorce by Candy Block is available through Amazon and the Barnes & Noble website. To contact Ms. Block for ministry opportunities, please write her at: Candith7@gmail.com. Order your copy online at Amazon.com