Hello again you ‘Ol screen. Hello again to each of you. It’s been a while. It’s been a long while. I can honestly say I haven’t written much since we said goodbye. I left with dreams and expectations of future writing but they never truly came to be. Its funny, isn’t it? Many are the plans of the man’s heart, but the Lord’s prevails. I needed a break. A break from processing through writing, a break from scheduled depth and scheduled vulnerability. I needed to just be vulnerable without sharing it at expected times. Did you know that’s possible? Did you know being vulnerable doesn’t always mean you need to share it with the world? Doesn’t always mean you need to force it? Did you know vulnerability can be sitting on your bed, all alone with the clock ticking and the sound of a distant T.V., with just tears streaming down your face? It’s an honesty with yourself and the allowance of letting yourself break. I guess that’s where I’ve been. A place where I let the feelings come as they are. Not forcing them to the surface when they’re not ready. Not tapping in to them just enough to write a meaningful post. I used to only let myself break a little. Cut it short and write. So I stopped writing. And I just broke all the way. I just was. I just am.
Don’t get me wrong, I love to write. Even now as I sit here, my computer speaks “welcome home”, and my fingers pick right back up like riding a bike. It’s familiar and warm and I’m thankful to once again be in your presence (per say). You all have been a home to me in the past, and I will always be grateful for this blog and the portal it created to allow a sinner like me to humbly write my heart to you.
All this to say, there’s a lot we could catch up on… the recaps and “up to dates”… maybe another time. I would love that. But for now I say hello and goodbye with parting thoughts.
After all these years, I feel as though there has been a common thread in our meetings together. We are all broken. It’s why we came here in the first place, isn’t it? To be seen in our brokenness? To be seen and not judged for where we are? To find someone who may be able to understand exactly how we feel? To find a girl like me. We found a safe place here. We found It’s ok to be broken here. I think we, as writers, all needed a place to break and be seen as well.
“ The very thing we’re afraid of, our brokenness, is the door to our Father’s heart.”- Paul Miller
“We were born with the urge to self-protect. Nature given survival mode and yet we’re called to break. “Jesus breaks the temptation to self-protect and gives the vulnerability of Himself.”- Voskamp
Never be afraid of being a broken thing. I often lay in my bed wondering where the meeting of brokenness and healing takes place. How is it ok to be broken but also desire wholeness? And if it’s ok to be broken, then how do we find joy? How do we go on living in our brokenness but not in despair? How can God ask me to be broken but also ask me to get out of bed in the morning? I haven’t found all the answers, and maybe I never will… but I did find HOPE.
Matthew 26:26-28 “Now as they were eating, Jesus took the bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, ’Take eat; this is my body’. And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, ’Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins’.”
Jesus offers us a cup. It Is His body and His blood and it is a covenant to us. A covenant to become a union. You and Him. Me and Him. And because there is a union, every part of me becomes His. Every fear, every flaw, every sin, every worry that keeps me up at night and every burden that weighs me to a slow crawl. Every ache in my hidden chambers and every piece of shame I hide, all of my brokenness! It ALL goes to Him! And In return I get all of Him. All of His peace, all of His goodness, all of His wholeness and all of His rest!
“Here this rich and divine bridegroom Christ marries this poor, wicked Harlot, redeems her from all her evil, and adorns her with all His goodness. Her sins cannot now destroy her, since they are laid upon Christ and swallowed up by Him”- Martin Luther
Jesus is saying – All that you’re carrying I take, and all that I am is yours. Yes Lord!! I take you, Jesus, please take me! All I have for all of You! He is my Healer who was broken Himself. I gladly give you this burden I have been living with for the past 3 years, I gladly give you the worry of failing and missing the mark, I gladly give you the shame I have suffered and the guilt I have laid upon myself. I gladly give you the fear of what the outcome may be, the fear of my rebel heart, the fear itself. Take it all and give me yourself in return. Peace is not a thing, it’s a person. And this person has given all of His peace in return for all of my crap.
But how? How do i give all of me in return for all of Him?? None of the pieces of me can find peace until I can see and feel and experientially enter into the reality of my union with Christ! Do you fully understand what this means? Do you fully understand the depth of this union? Are you in communion with this God who is offering you the very thing you need and are desperate for?
Because, honestly, I have forgotten about this Union. I have forgotten the power that is in the covenant God has made with me all those years ago. I have forgotten His promises, and I will never find peace without remembering the heart of God for me, the cross, communion and crucifixion. I need to remember to be broken and given into the world so Jesus can re-member my broken heart. Remember the covenant He has made with you. Remember the Union that was made so that you might live. Remember and allow Him to re-member your broken places. As Ann Voskamp puts it so beautifully, “Who knows why God allows heartbreak, but the answer must be important enough because God allows His heart to break too.”
I am the girl with secrets I don’t know how to tell, with sins deeper than I care to admit, with silent suffering and knowing what it means to be lost, not knowing how to be found. I am the girl who snaps at my children, stiffens in anger towards my husband, the girl who would rather protect my heart than enter into someone else’s pain. I’ve fallen and broken myself, desperate for someone to put me back together again. And yet I sit here, being offered a continual love from the God in Heaven who loves me and sees me. He takes my cup and gives me His. Any good in me is from Him. And He is offering you, a girl like me, the same cup of peace and grace in return for your brokenness.
It’s been a journey, hasn’t it? This blog, the words, the tearful emails, the community it produced and the love it brought about. It’s been a road with speed bumps and bruises, laughter and light, hope and glory! We’ve all been knocked around a little throughout it, battered and worn. But we have all experienced outstretched arms in this little community we call A Girl Like me. I pray you have experienced the lifting of your head in this time with us. We can only pray by some miracle, God has used our words to help you see His face whenever you see yours. His grace is all over you. His love shines through the deepest cracks. His glory blankets you and allows you to break and grow. One step at a time dear friends. Remember the covenant.
“Beat, beloved heart, beat on into the world. You will be broken and you will be loved. You don’t ever have to be afraid.” He is redeeming everything!