I do not mind being labeled as single. I detest--strongly resent--abhor the label "Divorced" When discussing this in the context of the church, I stated my feeling of being at the bottom of the social heap since I am divorced. You see, no one asks for the story of why you are divorced and I must admit I do not offer detailed explanations. There is a scarlet D on my forehead and there is no room for explanation. Suffice it to say I cringe when I am asked the question, "Are you married?" At times I answer no without comment, but there are occasions when more must be said.
As my marriage did not complete me, nor does my divorce define me. There is so much more to me than current martial status. It is interesting that as soon as you marry again, you loose the "Divorce" label. Almost as if it never happened, you are welcomed back into the throngs of the happily married. You reclaim your spot in the top social layer and never look back to the days in the cellar.
I wonder if there are labels which you resent as well. Obese, poor, ignorant, old, ugly, low class--on and on are the labels we place upon our fellow sojourners. We never look past the surface and judge the book by its cover. We never turn over the front cover and discover the beauty contained within. What a loss for us when we refuse to recognize there is a deeper story hidden by the labels we place over the heart of the matter.
I am no longer married--there is shame associated with the word divorce. It proclaims to the world that I did not finish what I vowed before God only death would part. It has left unfinished business--with no possibility of finishing it. The story behind the divorce is painful, but the anguish of no possibility of finishing well is heartbreaking.
I pray you will look beyond the scarlet letter and see my heart. I pray you will know how much I love The Lord, my family, and my friends. I pray all of this is used for His good purpose. I ask that you look beyond the labels and the surface before judging one another. There is always more to the story than what you see and no one is defined by a single letter.
But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain.
I Corinthians 15:10