Labels – like limpet mines
From the moment we are born, labels are placed upon us. A tiny baby might be labelled as ‘a good feeder’, a ‘cryer’ a ‘good sleeper’, ‘the image of his daddy’. As we grow, we and others add to these labels.
Labels such as Loser, Popular, Bully, Loner, Cool, Pretty, Victim, Sporty, Introverted, Clever, Melodramatic, Outgoing, Skinny, Fat, unwittingly stuck onto us in childhood by teachers, classmates and parents can cling to our souls like limpet mines for years – long into adulthood.
I can remember my own mum, on many occasions, using one particular label that effected my sister and me deeply long into adulthood. She used to say that my sister was the ‘clever one’ and that I was the ‘pretty one’. Which, of course made my sister wonder if that meant she wasn’t pretty. (She’s actually beautiful) and made me believe I had to prove I was intelligent.
What labels do you remember wearing? Are you still wearing some of them?
Maybe the labels you wore were actually great ones! Maybe you were the cool, popular one at school and now you wonder where that cool kid went to.
Maybe you were successful in business or ministry and things went wrong? Did you stick a post-it note on your own heart saying ‘Failure’
Maybe your marriage failed. Do you wear labels such as ‘Divorcee’ ‘Rejected’ ‘Discarded’ ‘Disqualified from ministry’?
Many of us spend so much of our adult life trying to deal with labels. We are either taking off painful labels or hoping to paste back on ‘successful’ labels of our past – those labels that made us feel valuable, worthy and significant.
God Is The Only One Who Has The Authority To Label You.
Labels people place on us are nothing more than opinion. God has placed THE ultimate, most important label on your heart. He has placed his seal – His ‘maker’s mark’ on you. His label is the final say.
None of the labels pasted on your heart by others define you, your true identity or your purpose, the only the labels that truly matter are those that God places on you if you have this ‘ultimate’, label of labels placed upon your heart: 2 Corinthians 1:22
“…who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.”
Here are a just few more labels that God has especially designed for us, His beloved children (actually that’s one of them!)
. God’s Child (Eph 5:1)
. Dearly Loved (Col 3:12)
. Forgiven (Col 3:13)
. Chosen (Col 3:12)
. God’s workmanship, (Eph 2:10)
Today, if you find yourself looking at those labels you wear, and any one of them was not placed upon you by God, take it off! It may sound a bit simplistic but that’s because it is.
On a final note, something to ponder –
If that label comes from any other source than your Creator God , it is not just a label, it’s actually a price tag.
Jill McIlreavy 💜