This is a continuation of a new series every Friday where I will be highlighting the growth and healing of one of my readers, a new reader each week. I sent out the call for stories that answered either ‘what is one lesson God has taught you?’ or ‘what is one way God has healed you?’ through their hard marriages, their separations, their divorces, their single mothering seasons, their forays into dating post-divorce, or even their remarriages. These, my sweet ones, are their brave and vulnerable stories. Take heart…you are not alone.
Two years ago, the walls of my life came crumbling down when the state police came to my home with a search warrant as part of an investigation into my husband. I was suddenly left with a physical disaster of a home and four children to care for on my own. He was not arrested until a few weeks later but he was not allowed to stay in the home with me. The kids and I were devastated.
For the next several months, I spent my time searching for the truth, caring for my children, and finding a new place to live. It was a difficult decision, but after confirming that I had Biblical grounds, I filed for divorce. About ten months after the police arrived at my house, my divorce was finalized and my marriage was officially over.
I never thought I would say the words “I am divorced” and a short time after my divorce was finalized, I wrote that they were painful and that I was ashamed that I couldn’t make my marriage last. Now, two years later, I realize that God released me from that marriage. It was not a relationship that glorified God. Although, I didn’t know it at the time of the search warrant, it put my children at risk.
For two years now, I have been the sole provider for my children; children who have essentially lost their father and face struggles of their own. I am still the disciplinarian. I am their encourager and their caregiver. At times, these things still feel impossible alone. God has given me the strength to persevere to support them in whatever life brings and to ensure they get the help and support they need. I’m grateful that God has placed me in a village that helps me raise my children, covering them in prayer and helping to lead them in the way they should go.
Today, my youngest was baptized and received a charge from her 16 year old brother that was written by the heart of a true Christian. Although he will never replace their father, he is proving himself to be a great role model. Two weeks ago, my oldest daughter gave up her spring break to travel to Baton Rouge to provide support to people whose homes were damaged by flooding. Despite everything she has faced, she still has a heart for God and for others.
I still struggle with being alone and the possibility of it being that way forever. But, I recently admitted, tearfully, to a good Christian friend, how I was feeling and found overwhelming support. She is helping me to view things from a new perspective; one that is helping me to align my will with God’s. She is helping me to see that my heart for God and what he wants is far more important than my desire not to be alone. If it’s God’s will, then I may someday have a new companion but, if not, I will be ok. My strength comes from Christ and not from a partner or spouse.
So today, I say, with much stronger conviction, “I am divorced.” But, it does not define me. I am a child of the one true King. God has a purpose for me. I can rest in Him.