Divorce: The Post-It Note From Childhood
How many of us have ever used post-it notes? Post-it notes are cool plus they serve a purpose. They stick and they stick to almost any substance. Most of us use them to temporarily call attention to something such as a page in a book or stuck on the fridge so the entire family can be constantly reminded of something in particular.
I use mine to mark songs in hymn books that I need to practice. When my kids were little I used them in their lunches to remind them they were loved. Sometimes nothing more than a happy face was drawn on it. I also used them to stick scriptures on the bathroom mirror or to remind them it was their dad’s weekend.
My preschool grandson loves post-it notes. I mean he really loves them. He will go through almost a complete package in one evening. He will draw on them, cut them up and stick them all over the house. Sometimes, he tries to write words on them and hand delivers the “mail” to his mother. His post-it drawings will stay in place for many days.
Recently I was thinking about some of the emotional ramifications divorce has on a child.
- Broken heartedness
- A feeling of not being loved
- Feeling alone and lonely
- Lack of trust in adults
I came to the conclusion that divorce is the post-it note that sticks to a child, and it sticks to them for many years. That is, unless someone or something can help the child to reconcile their feelings and restore hope.
Only God and a relationship with Jesus Christ can truly remove the glue that sticks the divorce on a child. However, as children’s leaders and helpers we can be the way that points the child to God and introduces them to a relationship with Christ.
We can be God’s instruments.
“The tongue that brings healing is the tree of life.” Proverbs 15:4 (NIV)
We can help a child to know he or she is worthwhile and loved.
“I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love!” Jeremiah 31:3b (Message)
We can show them and model to them what kindness looks like and feels like in their troubled world.
“I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love; I lifted the yoke from their neck and bent down to feed them.” Hosea 11:4 (NIV)
We can be the person that helps them to feel safe and comforted to the point they learn to trust again.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. John 14:1 (NIV note: Trust – the antidote for a troubled heart.)
We might be the one person in their life that helps them to understand they can move forward; that they will get through this time; and that there is someone who will stay with them and be with them and give them hope.
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:29-31 (NIV)
You can help remove the glue that sticks the post-it note of divorce to the child. Love them through the divorce and bring God’s unconditional love and His word to them.For more resources and information on divorce, family disruption and modern families please visit our Hope 4 Hurting Kids Divorce and Modern Family Help Center.
This article is updated and adapted from an article originally published on Divorce Ministry 4 Kids on February 15, 2013.