near to the brokenhearted

Posted: December 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

Scripture (Psalm 34, to be specific) tells us that God is near to the brokenhearted.  I’ve been experiencing an unexpected bit of clarity today, as I’ve looked back across my journey. 

On one hand:  YES, God has been very much near to me in my brokenhearted passages. 

On the other hand:  hindsight shows me clearly that not all of the passages that felt so bad were brokenheartedness.

Some of the time, I was basically nursing resentments, petting them, holding them, doing everything in my power to grow them stronger.  I was not brokenhearted – I was just feeling sorry for myself.

It was about holding onto expectations about others – and in case you don’t know this yet, expectations are KILLER for relationships and also supremely unhelpful where mental health and peace come in. 

It was about clinging to pain – about loving the pain more than I loved myself – more than I loved others – more than I loved God.  The pain was a familiar friend and I didn’t WANT to let it go.  If you get angry when people suggest you can be healed of your pain, I would challenge you to consider:  are you doing what I did?  Are you even willing to let the pain go at all?  Would you know who you were, if you weren’t defined by pain?

It was about unforgiveness.  Withholding forgiveness can feel like power.  It can feel like wisdom.  It can feel like common sense.  It can feel like exercising a right.  Really, the right we are exercising is to feel pain, to grow bitter, to be sick/dysfunctional in our relationships, to mistake ourselves for brokenhearted.  We can end up crying out, “God, I’m brokenhearted!  What about your promise?!  Where are you?” and not even begin to realize that we are confusing unforgiveness for brokenheartedness. 

If you are among the brokenhearted today, I pray that you are finding comfort in His nearness.  He is so very tender. 

If He seems to offer no comfort, no nearness at all…if He seems endlessly far away…I would challenge you, as one who has been there:  examine your heart.  Ask Him to show you!  Be honest with yourself:  are you truly brokenhearted?  Or are you nursing resentments…holding onto expectations…clinging to pain…refusing to forgive?  In other words, are you refusing to be healed?   Are you pushing Him away? 

I’m not saying it’s a cinch that you are.  Everyone’s story is different, and it’s not for me to know your motivations.  This is not a question I ask you.  It’s a challenge I give you to ask yourself.  You know, just in case.  If I’m way off base, ignore what I’ve written here.

I’m just one beggar telling other beggars where there might be good bread.  🙂  I can’t learn something that is so good and then keep it to myself!  Praying for you, whether you are brokenhearted, or in need of a painful (but good) adjustment. 



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