Break, divide, multiply, grow
Who knew we could break on so many levels … and simultaneously, too?
My heart broke when my father died last summer. It’s a selfish sort of break because the brokenness doesn’t apply to him. He’s pain free. Cancer free. Sadness free. On the other hand, I still can’t say or even think the words, “My dad died,” without crying. Will that ever go away?
A few weeks after his death, with life spinning with grief, an important relationship broke. Grief is messy. And then, during the anticipated eclipse that I’ll forever frown upon, my dura broke. Dura is the outermost membrane that enwraps the brain and spine. It keeps the brain and spine floating, balanced and comfortable … which is why I felt physically unbalanced, smashed and with intense pain (which led to 9 days in the hospital).
Can a broken heart lead to a broken dura? The doctors said no. They deemed it a “spontaneous” event. But I know God, and He isn’t spontaneous. He’s a God with a plan.
So what do you do when sharp shards of brokenness lay all around you? What’s the plan then?
While the brokenness was still brewing, I had a long chat with a cousin emerging from her own brokenness – an ugly, broken marriage. She told me that to get through it, she had created a safe haven. She designed a place to surround herself with goodness. For her, this was a basement room swirling with uplifting music, inspiring words and her cats. She found peace there. She found healing there. She found God and His church there.
Surround yourself with goodness. The message resonated and repeated for me. That’s why I’ve been in my metaphorical basement. (Hence, the lack of writing on my part.) I’ve been trying to be gentle and kind to myself … trying to foster His healing power. In my broken state, much of my physical energy and internal enthusiasm spilled out. I was left pretty empty – not entirely empty, but where I didn’t have enough of me left to give.
To repair and refuel, I’ve been filling my vessel with His words, taking time to read books again, being more intentional with personal time, and developing healthier physical habits (drinking more water, eating more, sleeping more – sure helps me feel like more of a person!)
The pain isn’t gone, but the healing process is evident – and I see possibilities for growth sprouting from the broken spots. For breaking is a pre-requisite for growth. Yes, that’s a rule governing the growth and development of the very cells forming the very body that our soul is implanted within.
“Break, divide, and multiply, because what other way is there to grow? No other way to transform and begin to belong, this breaking and dividing to grow a heart …” writes Ann Voskamp in her book “The Broken Way.”
I know our breaking, dividing and multiplying – our growth – Is meant to do good for others. Our growth beautifies and benefits Earth’s journeymen. That’s a vital, living part of His plan. The only cells that don’t benefit others – that benefit only themselves – are known as cancer. And that’s what started this beautiful broken mess in the first place. Ah, the life cycle. The cell cycle. The cycle to return to Him.
Because of Him, let’s intentionally surround ourselves with more of His goodness. The growth will come with time and nourishment.
Thank you for reading. Please share in the comments something that helps you heal – a piece of the process that nourishes your body and soul. What you share might be just the piece missing from someone else’s puzzle. God bless!