When you’re feeling too broken for love

Over the last year, God has led me down the aisle–slowing down to keep pace with me and my sometimes dragging feet. I have learned the communion union is the marriage of us…my sin to His grace, His tenderness to my anguish, my brokenness to His sufficiency. And head resting on steady heartbeat, He has brought deep comfort into my life, even in the midst of working out identity, resentment, unbelief, anger, resentment, restlessness, and fatigue. It still amazes me that I serve a God who believes in me, despite my unbelief.

For years, I had felt mature and ready for a relationship. I felt I had a lot to offer. I was level-headed and sturdy, fun, family-oriented and joyful–except for “grump week (or two)”, which occurred once every 9 months to a year. That seemed an acceptable length of time for someone to have to put up with. That strength I now recognize was, to a large extent, hard-heartedness. I didn’t know God. I recognize the virtue to God of a heart that knows its need, but I can’t help but sometimes feel that the hard-hearted strength was a more virtuous thing to offer in a relationship than BigFeelings.

This past year was my first experience with feeling deep internal brokenness, instead of that produced by circumstance. Some nights, waves of it still hit. And do you know what thought I’ve rolled over in my head for months now? That maybe I’m too broken for love.

Right now, this brokenness only breaks me, and I don’t want it to break anyone else. It seems selfish for me to allow it. If I hardly understand the complexity of my brokenness, hardly identify the reasons for it myself (or can’t fix it, like the state of the world), how can I expect someone else to deal with it or understand it or be exhausted by it? I’ve been known deep by friends, but I can shut the door to my room without them being any the wiser.

I know I wrote the post on vision and I saw the vision, and it looked beautiful to me, but how would it feel for TheOtherOne? Hedging myself in a tower seems safer and more noble for his sake, and who wants to be the short end of the stick?

But

Tonight Christa Wells, one of my favorite Christian singer-songwriters, posted 4 songs that she wrote about her husband that I had never heard before. And when I heard them, I heard hope. Because she sounds like me. Her suffering art ministered to my suffering heart. Because it was a picture of a good man loving a deep well of a woman. Her lyrics are intricate and honest stories of finding irrepressible light in dark, raw places.

A picture that someone similar to me can be loved was the picture that I needed to see. It shows what happens when art runs towards hard and honest places. Her suffering produced the story and the story produced the song and the song brought healing.

 

Other Christa Wells favorites: Everything Moves But You, Held, Visible Invisible, Even Though

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