I always hated broken. Mismatched. Torn.
I was quick to throw away, to replace, anything with a flaw.
Into the trash stuff went, at the first sign of wear.
I wanted shiny.
I wanted new.
I wanted, perfect.
And I still struggle with wanting perfect.
That's not something I outgrew with my teens.
But the older I get, the more I catch myself craving character instead.
I want the actual antique, with dirt and rust.
Not the shiny replica I can buy much cheaper from a big brand store.
I want the real thing. Authentic. Vintage.
Cause there’s a story there. There’s beauty there, in the cracks and imperfections.
How I wish I’d developed this taste much sooner. Before so many bruises and scars marred my own skin.
Skin I thought only held as much value as Glamour magazine deemed fit.
Skin that was best if it was flawless.
Void of any “imperfections.”
Only now am I beginning to see my skin, like all the stuff contained within it, as better for the “imperfections.”
The stuff that makes me me.
The chicken pox scar. And the new one from the burnt caramel.
The spot above my elbow, from when I fell off my bike.
And the scars you can’t see, from the broken hearts, and the wayward years.
Those things make me unique.
Unlike any other.
All that brokenness I was so afraid of.
The stuff I tried to hide for so long.
It has shaped me into the person I am.
Just as future hurts, and falls, will continue to make me into the person I was meant to be.
What I once saw as weakness. As faults that would lessen my value…
I now see as character. As stories worth telling.
Each scar represents a necessary part of my journey.
Each broken bit is the result of some step I had to take.
Some were painful.
Some were scarring.
But all were necessary, every single step.
Brokenness is not a bad thing.
It’s beautiful in fact.
Because it reminds us we’re vulnerable. Just flesh and blood.
It reminds us we’re human.
Each of us.
In this together.
We all have our own scars. And our own stories.
And those broken bits are what send us all in search of healing.
The brokenness is what reminds us to keep searching for the Healer.
I haven't written in a very long while. And while I've missed it, I think it's been good for me to take a break.
I also think it's fitting that my "return" would be this, talking about brokenness, a subject dear to my heart, especially now.
I spent a lot of time trying to outrun my own brokenness. A lot of time.
But I didn't gain much ground.
Instead I kept running into the same struggles, which summed up simply, centered on my fallibility.
I've spent most of my life knowing a lot about how to be a good Christian. That's not to say I've been one, only that I've known the "how tos."
I felt secure in my knowledge of spiritual things.
Where I've struggled, and I mean really struggled, is with my humanity. My pesky fleshness.
I have hated how prone I am to wonder. To worry. To get caught up in all my limitations.
But this past month I've been learning a lot about what it takes to be a good human.
What is required to be a person, fully functioning, in flesh and in Spirit.
It sounds crazy, to be pushing 30, and only be beginning to learn how to live on this earth.
But that's where I'm at, in a nutshell.
Learning, how to bloom here.
Where I'm planted.
In dirt. And earth.
With flesh. And blood.
I have so very much to learn.
Maybe someday I'll come back and talk more about embracing my brokenness, as a way of moving forward, finally.
For now I'll say that I'm more and more convinced with each passing day, and each conversation, that we - as people - have far more in common than anything that separates us.
And I'm hoping that moving forward I'll be bolder in sharing my own stories, both the happy and the sad ones, as a means of reaching out and connecting with others.
Mostly because I know now how helpful it's been for me to hear the stories of courageous friends and frontrunners.
People that have gone before me, and people alongside me in this life journey.
People brave enough to share their brokenness.
How I admire their courage.