By: Larvetta L. Loftin
All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28) And God had a purpose for my failed marriage but it wasn’t until my divorce occurred that it was fully revealed. As a girl who was raised in the church and loved the Lord, I wanted nothing but to please HIM. So, I rededicated my life to Christ and I began to live as a celibate woman for 7 years prior to marriage. So, for me, my single life was complete and I was entering into a new dimension of life as a wife. So, I thought!
But then, I remember being so ashamed of myself because I had done all the things that you should do based on these societal norms as this 38-year-old woman- successful career, real estate, no kids, active in my church. Based on the world thinking, that screams -WIFE MATERIAL! Not to mention, I was also ready to have kids, establish a legacy, secure the American dream while still submitting to God’s authority. But this new dimension came through as a result of my divorce.
I remember crying, pleading and begging God to save my marriage. Not because I wanted him. It was because I was embarrassed about my choice. I was afraid to reveal the truth about myself and face the shame. As we know, it is always better to blame someone else for your inability to speak up than to be accountable.
Let me be clear, I didn’t have a vision for my marriage. I just knew I was celibate and had waited 7 years to say, I do. My ex-husband and I attended pre-marital classes while planning a destination wedding and 10-day honeymoon to Hawaii. The pictures reflected so much beauty and love but it had no substance. But I know what Ecclesiastes 4 said, two is better than one.
So, after all of that, was when reality set in for me. The background noise was no longer loud, no more wedding planning, it was quiet so I had to be still. I remember our first New Year’s Day, I wrote in my journal, I think I have made a mistake. I didn’t share it with anyone. So, about four months later, was when the perfect glass shattered and the truth was finally revealed. I left to live with a good friend. And we divorced about 3 months later. To me, it wasn’t a long process because that was when the process to save me began.
During my stay with my friend, I had realized that I was emotionally unstable. I kept telling myself, I was fine and I would even pray for my ex-husband that he would have a change of heart. Even knowing that I made a bad choice, I still wanted God to restore my marriage. He that finds a wife, finds a good thing. (Proverbs 18:22) And I am a good thing at least that was what I thought as a wife.
So, one afternoon, I called a good friend whom I consider to be one of my praying ‘thug’ sisters. She keeps it real with me no matter what while praying me through it. I called her to say I think I need counseling. I was so grateful that she answered because this was a 911 call. I was done pretending like I was ok.
She texted me the counseling center’s number and I called them immediately. I asked could I get a same-day appointment and she said yes. So, in less than an hour, I was driving to counseling. I was so unstable that I had an accident in my car. I scraped the car door against the wall of the counseling office building. I knew then that I needed professional help. Otherwise, things might have been worse, like hurting someone else. When we don’t get the necessary help, it can be detrimental to yourself or someone else.
I walked into her office and I just cried profusely. She says, “So, tell me, why are you here?” And I said, “My marriage isn’t working.” She says, “Now, we can’t worry about the marriage, (God will see you through that) but we need to work on you.”
In my mind, I was a bit disturbed by her reply for skating over my marriage since I was still married at that time but she knew deep inside that there was a greater purpose for me and God sent me there to uncover that truth. And that is when God performed open-heart surgery on me.
I began to seek God’s wisdom with the help of therapy. She asked me, "Why did I get married?" And I thought long and hard. She forced me to go deep and stop replaying the story you tell yourself and reveal the real truth. And what I discovered was I got married for validation and becoming a wife in my brokenness, was going to complete my story.
While I am healed from that divorce, I am committed to investing in my wellness and creating healthy and loving relationships. I am making sure I am self-aware about my trauma so I can love with vulnerability and bountiful joy. I believe that we must first love ourselves before we can love anyone. And God gave me the will to marry so I can fully become the fullness of what he created me to be and LOVE with boundaries.
Currently, I am now leading our Divorce Support Group Ministry at my church and passionate about helping others lead healthy relationships built on a life of truth, wholeness, and freedom. I also serve as a divorce well coach for individuals - getting you to be well through a divorce. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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