By Shannon Clark
Embrace. This word gives me all the yummy feelings. A word associated with many wonderful things, like a physical embrace with another, embracing a beautiful view or a sweet moment in time. When I think of “embrace,” I imagine warmth and happiness. At the root, embrace is about acceptance. When you embrace a person, a view, a situation or circumstance, you accept who or what it is. Rejection is not present.
Broken. This word has the opposite effect on me. A word I do not like. I associate “broken” with pain, heartache, disappointment, damage, dysfunction, incomplete (you get the idea). Broken relationships, broken hearts, broken promises, broken families… even broken things generate negative feelings – a broken dish, a broken window, a broken dryer, a broken toy.
Currently I have a pile of my kids’ miscellaneous broken things sitting on the kitchen table, waiting to be glued back together. As they bring me broken items, I set them aside in a basket until the basket is overflowing and can no longer be ignored. Mending the broken pieces is a task I do not enjoy, but I do it because of the joy it brings my children when their broken things have been repaired.
Isn’t it also true that when broken relationships or broken hearts have been repaired, there is joy? Healing brings about a positive change and a reason for rejoicing. I have certainly experienced this in my own life, and I’ve witnessed it in others’ lives. So when the Lord brought the words “embrace” and “broken” to my mind for this post and I was unsure of which word to write about, He did a funny thing and told me to put them together: Embrace Broken.
Hmm, embrace broken? I admit that for most of my life I have not embraced broken. Rather, I have resented, despised, and avoided broken. This includes people and things. This includes my broken self. But, praise be to God, He has recently been teaching me that without brokenness, there is no need for repair, for healing, for restoration. Without being broken, I would have no need for Jesus to be my Savior, my Healer, my Redeemer.
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart.” Psalm 51:17
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3
The healing process can be painful and difficult; it can even be excruciating. But it is necessary, because without it I would stay broken, damaged, and incomplete. I do not want to miss out on the joy of seeing and experiencing the other side of healing. Amen?
So, as I continue on this journey, I am learning to embrace broken, to accept broken. I am learning to embrace broken people, including myself. I am learning to recognize that brokenness means a need for healing – a true healing that comes solely from the Healer Himself. And I don’t want to miss out on being restored by Jesus!
Thankfully, I have been greatly blessed by mentors who have embraced me by, first, listening to my pain. Next, by speaking truth into and praying scripture over my broken pieces.
Dear ones, let’s journey together as we all learn to embrace broken while we pray for one another and point others to the One who mends.
In the meantime, I am far from learning to embrace the broken toys my children bring to me. Pray for me.
Shannon Clark – Shannon is a proclaimed introvert, married to her adventurous hubby, Eric. She is a stay-at-home-schooling mama to three amazing children, ages 1, 4 and 6. Growing up in Indiana, she has a love for the outdoors and all things gardening. She's inspired through writing and art, but she's really in her element while working with little ones. She's also passionate about serving others and is currently a part of Team MORE.
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