Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Broken Is Good

As a mother of five very active boys, I have watched (and oft times just heard) many things get broken in my home.  Sometimes the object was meaningful to me - like an expensive plate I had on display in my kitchen that I could never find the exact replica to replace it.  Other times, the object is nothing more than a drinking glass or vase that has no real value.  Luckily for me I have never possessed anything really valuable that if it were to be broken would be a real devastation.  

Other than my own heart...

I have had my share of broken hearts in my day.  Haven't we all?  Whether it be from a shattered  romance, something one of our loved ones has done, watching someone (or a pet) suffer, moving away from a home and people you love, sending a missionary off for two very LONG years, witnessing the unfair treatment of others, or saying goodbye to a loved one for the last time while on this earth.

I have experienced all of those things and some more than once or twice. 

Right now I am experiencing a broken heart of sorts because my baby McKay is going to be a senior in high school this year.  Watching my children grow up has been my greatest joy and the best part of my life.  But watching them mature, knowing the clock is counting down before they will all be on their own, is well...  heart breaking.  

When I took McKay 'back to school' shopping a couple of weeks ago, it hit me hard when I realized that this was the last time I would ever do that as a mother.  It's not easy accepting that I am living all of the "lasts" instead of the "firsts".  It used to be I was completely focused and excited to witness the milestones of their firsts.  Their first word, first step, first day of school, first date, etc.  Now it's changed into their lasts.  Last football game, last high school dance, last parent teacher conference, last graduation, last mission call, and the last time to go back to school shopping.  

The firsts are usually something that we notice and watch for and then take note with great celebration.  Not so much the lasts.  In fact the lasts often go unnoticed.  We don't even know when the lasts of most things happen.  We never know when the last time our child will sit on our lap, or the last time they will ask us to tuck them in at night, or the last time they will tell us to kiss their owie better.  But they still happen, unaware or not.  I am grateful I have not been aware of most of them.  If someone told me,"This is the last time your son will ever sit on your lap", I would have been devastated.  

Some things are better not knowing. ☺ 

I wrote a post on this six years ago that can be found HERE.
And even though my heart is breaking a bit because I am leaving a phase of my life that I have been so comfortable in for over 29 years, I realize that sometimes it takes a little breaking of the heart in order to open up a new and possibly even brighter tomorrow.  Heavenly Father allows our hearts to be broken because he knows our hearts have to open up when broken and that opening is the only way for other things to get in that He wants to give us. Good and beautiful things can come from broken things.
I learned that well when I lost my son Tyson.  But that's another post entirely.

I saw this quote and just fell in love with it:

It takes broken soil to produce a crop, broken clouds to give rain, broken grain to give bread, broken bread to give strength. It is the broken alabaster box that gives forth perfume. . . . it is Peter, weeping bitterly, who returns to greater power than ever. [“Broken Things,” an excerpt from Vance Havner, The Still Water (Old Tappan, NJ: Flemming H. Revell, 1934) 

It reminded me of a song I love by Kenneth Cope titled Broken.  It talks a lot about how we feel broken ourselves because of life's battering along the way.  It's hard to get out of this life alive - oh wait-  we aren't going to do that no matter what.  Okay, so it's hard to get out of this life without a lot of cracks, bruises, and injuries to our hearts and souls along the way.  Sometimes our spirits will shatter, sometimes our testimony will crumble, and almost all the time our hearts will break.  Hearts are tender and fragile and it's pretty tough to escape this life without a few gashes to it here and there.

We will make mistakes.  A lot of them.  Sometimes mistakes break people worse than anything else that happens to them because of the guilt.  That's why I love the fact that the song and the quote emphasize that Heavenly Father loves broken things.  ALL of us are going to be broken and He already knew that before He registered us for this game.  He KNEW we weren't going to come back as perfected souls with our spirits looking all bright and shiny and wonderfully new.  Quite the opposite in fact.  We are all going to return with our spirits looking like we have just played in the Super Bowl.  Bruised, battered, and broken.  And that is how it's supposed to be.  There is nothing to be ashamed of because our souls show signs of playing a tough and hard fought game.  The fact that our spirits show signs of that is what will cause Him (and us) to rejoice because it is proof that we grew stronger and learned some important lessons while here. 

And that is where the atonement comes in.  

No matter how broken we are, or how many bruises we acquire while here, the atonement can repair them all and make us all shiny and new again.  All because our Savior was willing to give up His life and pay the price for us.  There is nothing but pure hope and love in the atonement. 

I will no longer look at any broken object with the thought that it's now useless and totally worthless.  When something breaks it will remind me that it takes some breaking to be able to open us up to new strengths and compassion.  No, we will never be the same once broken, but that is the point.  We don't want to return the same as we came.  And the good news is, broken things once fixed, seem to always turn out better and stronger than before.

Broken is good.

Please take the time to watch this wonderful video of Kenneth Cope's song Broken.  It is so touching and inspiring.


Dawn said...

Well said twin/sista! We are better & stronger when we heal...maybe a few new scars but always better off :) the next season for you is going to be wonderful! Daughters...babies....fun! :)

Jodi Wilding said...

You are so right! And I hope my next season arrives sooner than later! haha I am seriously grandbaby hungry! But need to get them married off first! All things in order! lol

Dawn said...

I can't believe how fast this season of our lives has gone. It was always the one I dreamed of....I never dreamed of my kids getting big and having their own families....so weird but absolutely wonderful!

Jodi Wilding said...

I know and yet I remember at the time thinking it would never end. That it would be eons and eons before they actually really DID grow up! Wow, how time flies!


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