Valentina, how did your restoration actually begin?
My journey began in 2012 and it was all of a sudden. I found the RMI a few months after my husband left home. I was devastated, I had gotten to the bottom of the well. But now I know it was necessary for me to have a broken heart so that the good seed could be planted in my life. Since then, my mind has been renewed daily by God, through the resources of the RMI and daily encouragement.
How did God change your situation Valentina as you sought Him wholeheartedly?
I was totally impatient, anxious, independent, proud, vain, lying to my husband and not submissive to him. I did not respect my mother or any authorities God placed in my life. I lived for the world and God was not first in my heart. I believed in God, but I was so far away from Him!
First God showed me all the wrong paths I had taken in my life, all wrong decisions I had made. Then He began to teach me many importants things. I learned the importance of submission. I learned to have a gentle and quiet spirit, not to gossip and to exhibit self-control. I began to win others without words and to leave everything in God’s hand, trusting He would answer me at just the right time.
I began to ask for His guidance in all decisions I had to make. I waited patiently. I began to pray and intercede for other people. I began to forgive and pray for those who hurt me. He helped me to not be unhappy and hurt when people gossip about my situation, because I knew in my heart my God is greater, nothing is impossible with God and He is always by my side. I learned to be humble, patient and trustworthy. God became first in my life and I fell madly in love with Him, my Lord and Savior. Now I see Him as my God, my Savior, my Lovely Husband! He is everything to me!!!
What principles, from God's Word (or through our resources), Valentina, did the Lord teach you during this trial?
Principle 1: Do not get lost - the ONLY way we can get to our destination, our restoration, is by holding our HH’s hand. How important it is to have the Lord, our God, as first in our lives and this will only happen if we invest in our relationship with Him. I made a commitment to God during my journey: I would wake up early and read His word and meditate on the verses that He used to touch my heart. I fasted on TV and spent more time with Him, my Beloved. And every time I thought of my husband or my marriage, I read the verses that He gave me that day.
Principle 2: Lighten your luggage - You need to Let go. This principle is the most difficult and also one of the most important. We should practice it EVERY DAY too. Placing everything into the hands of God, not just our husband and our marriage, but EVERYTHING. I left everything in His hands. Anything that came to my mind to worry or make me anxious, I immediately surrendered to His hands and asked Him to help me let go and trust Him. I repeated that God has great things for my family and that I and my family will serve the Lord.
This journey was used by God to change me and mold me according to His will. And He has done a great job on me, but there is still so much to do. So I'm going to focus on the verses that show me how to behave and trust Him to guide me to be the woman He wants me to be.
Principle 3: Freedom will set you free. "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things which we do not see." - Hebrews 11: 1. How wonderful is to read the word of God and to have our mind renewed by His truth. It's Liberating!!!
What were the most difficult times that God helped you through Valentina?
At the beginning of my journey I acted on my own understanding, being disobedient to God, and got to the bottom of the well. But God is merciful and that's when He reached out and took care of me, giving me strength and teaching me His truths. After a year and a half, when my relationship with the Lord was more mature and deeper, problems at work began to spring up, but the more they appeared, the more I clung to the Lord and it was when I found myself completely in love with Him and felt my heart burst again with joy and love.
Valentina, what was the “turning point” of your restoration?
When I was able to understand the principle of "letting go" and put everything into God's hands. I began to trust Him completely, I lived in peace, without worrying when, how and if my marriage would be restored. I also went to work for this ministry, doing things for God and with Him to help other women.
In September of 2013, I wrote a Praise Report that I never sent on purpose, because it was a report of praise — thanking Him for all the changes God was making in my life and believing that I would soon be writing my Restored Marriage Testimony. I did this because He had guided me to write the praise report but not to send it. At the end of the PR I even wrote the title of my testimony: RESTORED EVEN AFTER THE HUSBAND MOVED TO ANOTHER COUNTRY. 🙂 God is wonderful
Tell us HOW it happened Valentina? Did your husband just walk in the front door? Valentina, did you suspect or could you tell you were close to being restored?
After the new year, my husband contacted me. We always talked on the internet because he was living in the USA. After we talked, he complained that he was in US for seven months and I had never visited him. I said if he wanted me to go for a visit I would do it. He then said he had already called me to come but I had declined. That’s when I realized that I had been disobedient to him (the first time he invited me) and had been disobedient to God too.
So I asked God's forgiveness for not being submissive. Then I told my husband that I would go to US to visit him, since I would be on an extended vacation from work. He told me to come, but to come only as a friend. I spent the month of January preparing for the trip, fasting for favor and asking God for guidance. I arrived in the USA on February 1 and this was the same day that my marriage was restored by God— when my husband told me that he wanted to stay with me, but he did not want me to make any sacrifice for him. That’s when I said that I loved him and that I would gladly leave my job to stay with him, supporting him in whatever he needed, because he was my husband. I told him all this always praying silently, asking God for guidance and trusting in His promises.
Would you recommend any of our resource in particular that helped you Valentina?
I recommend all the courses available, and not just do it once, but do as many times as the Lord directs you to do. I did each of them more than twice and every time I did, the Holy Spirit convicted me about new things. How God Can and Will Restore Your Marriage also A Wise Woman. All of the By the Word of Their Testimonies, and going through online courses.
Would you be interested in helping encourage other women Valentina?
Yes, always! I am already part of the ministry team.
Either way Valentina, what kind of encouragement would you like to leave women with, in conclusion?
Wake up early and spend time with your Heavenly Husband. Speak to the Lord about everything. Spend more time with Him throughout the day, especially meditating on His Word. Fast regularly. Stop watching television for a while, especially romantic movies since they are a stumbling block to restoration. Listen to praise music and read the Word of God. Praise Him even (principally) in difficult times. Pray for other people but stop praying asking for restoration. Let go. Take the RMI courses and read the books over and over again, until the principles are set firmly in your heart.
On February 5, 2018 the Lord, Valentina’s HH, called...
Our sweet bride Valentina is
No longer with us, but is now with her HH.
“Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come,
and His bride has made herself ready.”
When Valentina first came to restore her marriage, she began by volunteering and was soon our Portuguese RESTORED Marriage Minister. For many years Valentina helped make the Portuguese ministry what it is today.
Valentina specialized in being a successful professional woman, an architect, was raised Catholic, and had a husband who believed we "deserve" better as the reason for him asking for separation when he first left her in 2012.
Once restored, Valentina took an extended sabbatical soon after He called several others to take her place. When we called her back, we believe she returned so we could help make her ready for her wedding day with Him. We are so thankful we got to know and love Valentina for all these years. She will remain an inspiration and be missed by us all.
Read Valentina’s first restored marriage testimony “The Changes God is Making”
Who was twice our Portuguese / Português Minister
My marriage was restored! I know I should be writing a testimony right now (in fact months ago, because it was restored in February), but first I want to share with you this PR I wrote last year but didn't send because I knew God wanted me to wait. Before I go on, please let me ask for forgiveness; I want you, my friends, and God to forgive me because this PR was written so late. Please, Erin, forgive me and thanks for everything you and these wonderful ladies have been sharing with me. Thanks God!!!
So, the PR I wrote on September 2013 was: “I want to give God all the glory and praise His name always! He is so faithful and is a lovely God!” “It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn Your decrees.” Psalm 119:71 (NIV). I thought last year was the worst in my life, but after finding RMI God showed me that He was using my tribulation to draw me closer to Him and teach me His word.
I was so wrong about my life. I was not the wife God created me to be. I was contentious, I did not submit myself to my husband, parents and boss, I was not discrete and talked too much, I was not kind and gentle and I thought I was smart and beautiful enough to be envied and desired. And, I think the worst sin I committed was that God was not my First Love. My husband was my first love and my idol. “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.” Revelation 2:4 (NIV). But when I began reading all the books from RMI and the Bible and watched the “Be Encouraged” videos, God began His great work in my life. He’s been renewing my mind and changing me every day. I could see my sins and my dirty heart. I could repent everything and ask for forgiveness to my husband. And now I’m gentle and respect everybody at work. I honor my parents and try to be submissive to my husband and my boss. I know there is some work to be done in me yet, but He did great changes in me and I’m so thankful and happy. I’m not anxious anymore nor judging others.
I’ve been learning so much with RMI and God’s word!! The principles that I learned and will be always fixed on my heart are:
1. I don’t need to be anxious about tomorrow and that He will give me everything I need,
2. The Lord is my Husband so I don’t need to be afraid or ashamed anymore,
3. God directs men’s heart whenever He wants,
4. Don’t lean on my own understanding,
5. Let go of everything and let God work,
6. I live by faith and not by signs,
7. This is a war against the enemy and not against my husband.
When I began to live these principles and many other’s God put in my heart, He kindly began to change my situation. First my husband forgave me and did not hate me anymore; second he became my friend again and became kind and gentle; and then He gave me peace and love to go on this journey, trusting He controls everything and He works everything to be good.
One more important change He made was to make me love Him so much that He became my FIRST LOVE. And I’m so happy now because I could really understand that this journey is the most important journey in my life because He drew me closer to Him and prepared me to comfort others with the same love He comforts me. It made me free when I realized that everything I was living was for the purpose to help others. Praise The Lord!!
For many times during this journey, God directed my husband’s heart to me. But it was only when I really understood this verse that everything really changed: “Therefore this is what the Lord says: “If you repent, I will restore you that you may serve Me; if you utter worthy, not worthless words, you will be My spokesman. Let this people turn to you, but you must not turn to them.” Jeremiah 15:19. It was hard to live this principle. I had to repent and ask for God help me many times. And He helped me all the time!
I learned to pray and fast fervently and to declare the victory, giving Him the praise and the glory for even the things He was still working on. For example, one night my husband, who was living in USA, sent me a message telling me every time he spoke to me he felt the desire to ask me for forgiveness and he didn’t know what he was doing anymore. I began praising My Lord and Savior thanking Him for the changes He was working on my husband. And then I began to read Ezekiel 34:11-16, thanking God because He was rescuing my husband and soon he would be back to our home.
I’m SURE SOON I will share with you my RESTORED MARRIAGE TESTIMONY. I even know the title He wants to give to my testimony: “RESTORED, Even After He Moved to Another Country.”
And I hope it will encourage you to go on, trusting Him and giving Him everything. Praise Him always!
Thanks and blessings!