My church is doing a sermon series on brokenness.
And recovery.
Last week I slept in.
And was a little tempted to skip again.

Even though the point of the series is that we are all recovering from something.
I am well aware that I am no exception.
And even though I share a lot of my life in this space.
I keep some things back.
Especially the cracks.
And this is a part of my past life that I have only hinted about here.

Partly because I have this fear that a student will stumble across it.
Or that maybe I am not totally all the way fixed.
And feel like I should be before I start writing about it.

Which really means there is shame.
And fear of accountability.

Because even though my bottom was a relatively high bottom.
It was still an ugly lonely place.
One that I would really like to avoid and not revisit.
And even though over a decade has passed.
It still feels pretty fragile.
Like those broken pieces have been tenderly and carefully glued back together.
But that it wouldn’t take much to send them shattering again.

Because looking back over the last decade.
I am still carrying the same baggage.
I am thankful that most days it is so light I don’t even notice it.
But on some very few days
It catches me full force again.
And it is so heavy that I feel crushed beneath it.
And I keep setting it down.
But it always seems to find me.
And out of habit, I suppose. I keep picking it up and lugging it along.

I think after all this time that those broken pieces should be solid enough again.
Because I learned so much in the being broken part.
That surely God has put me back together again.

And I get ever so frustrated when I run across a crack.
Like a broken dish or vase that has been glued back together.
It just isn’t the same.
The cracks still show. And leak.
And make it weak.

And even though this brokenness hasn’t won.
And that is was a long time ago.
I am painfully aware that it isn’t gone.
That I am just one pill.
Or one bottle.
Or one email.
Or one hurtful comment.
Or one pound.
Or one website.
Or one purchase.
Or one self-depricating thought.
Or one whatever your vice of choice.
From shattering all over again.
And finding, this time, a much lower bottom.
One in which I'm afraid I would never be able to find all the pieces.

And so, even though I am a long time “recovered”.
I am still fearful of exposing my cracks.
That eventually the glue holding them together just might give.
And I think this is because I have it all wrong.
Being broken.
Isn’t about God putting you back together again.

But about making something else entirely.
Something more beautiful from the pieces.
Something bigger that fits together perfectly.
Something that maybe I never even imagined.
Because a dish or a vase is just a plain old piece of pottery
Until it is broken.
And only then it can become a masterpiece.

(and I skipped the Friday playlist, so let me make up for it with one fabulous song that you will want to listen to over and over.)
and that really cool mosaic, I found here.


samskat said...

Wow. I have no idea what your broken place was, but kudos for making me want to put down my broken past and leave it behind to make me into something better.

Corinne said...

This was such a beautiful post, my friend.
Those cracks, they're us. But at the same point, this moment is new and ours and doesn't contain things we did years ago.
And it's this moment that counts.

Kate said...

Sometimes, we want to be made whole, easily leaving behind those scars of our battles. Especially the ones we have to fight with ourselves. But sometimes, the place you mend is stronger then the original.

My husband has a crooked nose. It was broken a few times in silly boyhood activities. When he had to get a surgery to help him breath, the doctor suggested fixing the nose outside too. I looked shocked at such a suggestion. It is just these 'defects', these scars and cracks that make us beautiful.

mommaof3 said...

we are simply jars of clay......