In our fortnightly column ‘Great Sexpectations’ we answer your questions on sex, faith and intimacy. Drop us an email on and ask us anything. Here, we answer a lady whose painful circumstances have caused her to question God’s goodness


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Dear Woman Alive

I feel really angry at God and I don’t know how to move on. I gave my life to him when I was about five years old. I felt really convicted about purity as a teenager so I kept myself to myself and despite interest from boys at my school, I ignored them. I met my husband at youth camp when we were 17 and we hung out but only in groups and didn’t even kiss until we got married at 19. I’m now 38 and feeling resentful about everything. My husband turned out to be abusive and gambled away all our money and eventually our home. The church we went to was completely on his side and said I couldn’t file for divorce but had to stay and be a good “helper” as his wife. We’ve lived in and out of hostels and staying with family while I’ve worked hard to get us back into our own place. On top of that, we struggled with sexual intimacy for the first few years and we’ve never been able to have children. I haven’t been pregnant once and we’ve been married for 20 years. I’m so sad and feel let down by God. Didn’t I do everything the right way?


Dear Reader,

Thank you for writing in and sharing some of your story. I am so sorry for the pain and disappointment you have been through. It sounds really hard.

Firstly I would say it is perfectly okay to get out of a marriage where your husband is abusive. If you need immediate help to be safe, please contact the Domestic Violence helpline.

I would suggest it is not surprising you have struggled with sexual intimacy if your husband is abusive, as trust is so important for relational intimacy.

Now to your feelings about God. Again, it is perfectly okay to feel angry at God.

I can understand your cry of: ‘Didn’t I do everything the right way?’

I can understand your cry of: ‘Didn’t I do everything the right way?’

I also felt that way in life for a while. I could identify with the prodigal son’s older brother (Luke 15:25-31) who did everything right, and then his brother, who did everything wrong, gets celebrated. It seems unfair, but look at the father’s message to his oldest son. He says: ‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.’

Other people in our lives can treat us badly, they can make painful choices that bring hurt to our hearts, but that is not God. God is with us throughout the pain of our circumstances.

Even though the lense you are looking through your life at the moment makes you feel that God has let you down, the truth is he is faithful and good.

Even though the lens you are looking through at the moment suggests to you that God has let you down, the truth, is he is faithful and good. He loves you, and even though you can’t see it now, he does have a good plan for your life.

At this point, the devil will be making you focus on your circumstances, which are, as you have said, very hard. He is the accuser, and to you he will be saying ‘I thought your God was good? He obviously doesn’t love you, because if he did, these hard things would not have happened.’

In reality, we know that Christians are not spared hardships. Jesus said in John 16:33 ‘In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.’

When we walk through pain, he is with us, and he has given us the Holy Spirit as comforter. 

Psalm 27:13-14 says: ’I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.’

You did do things right, but sadly the man you are with has made some bad decisions, and as I said earlier, you have no obligation to stay with an abusive husband.

I want to encourage you that although men, and women will let us down, God won’t let you down. Shout and scream at him if you have to, and then ask him to share with you his redemptive plan for you life, as he will have one, and I believe it will be filled with hope.


If any of these issues have affected you, you can call Premier Lifeline for support. Premier Lifeline is a national, confidential helpline offering a listening ear, emotional and spiritual support from a Christian perspective. If you would like someone to talk with and pray for you, call Premier Lifeline on 0300 111 0101.

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