There is Beauty in Brokenness

I felt uncomfortable the other day. That very uncomfortable, borderline sick feeling you get when someone asks you to do something that takes you completely out of your element. I was hosting an event with a group of teen girls. Most of whom came with a friend or family member. Someone came up with the idea to split the girls up so they could mingle with others. As I counted off numbers to the girls and asked them to leave their friends and move to the group they were assigned to, I felt uncomfortable, horribly uncomfortable. “But the point is to get to know new people,” my friend assured me… Of course it is. I understood the point completely. But the act took me back to my school days, some not too long ago. I remember the feeling of panic as I realized I would be separated from the only person I wanted to talk to. As I looked in the eyes of most of the girls, I saw the nervousness and uncertainty.
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Quickly my mind went back to a snippet from a sermon I’d hear the day before from TD Jakes. The sermon was about vision, but in it he said,
“As you minister to young women, you are really ministering to yourself. I think that you are busy in the process of redeeming yourself, and that what you see in the young girls and the passion through which you reach out to them, that you are reaching out to yourself… and as you give it to them, it shall be given unto you again.”
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I am an introvert. Quiet. Reserved. Even at the age of 30, I hardly ever participated in class discussions. I like to blend in and slide by unnoticed. But lately, God has been saying,  “I’m calling you from the back of the class to the front.” 
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Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine myself in a job where I would speak in front of groups – small groups, medium-sized and large groups. I attended an orientation the other day.  I came prepared to share with the individuals who came to the table I was stationed at. As I sat in the auditorium, they introduced the counselors, faculty, staff… all of the important people who are vital to the school. The school social worker comes over and whispers, “we would like you to share about the program at the end.” SHARE?! In front of everyone?! But what will I say? Everything I’d prepared to say at my table was no longer good enough. I feverishly scratched down some notes… changing them again and again right up until the time they motioned for me to come up. She handed me the mic and politely told me to make it quick. Oh my.
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So I spoke. I’m not sure how eloquent I was, and my scratch paper wasn’t written to be “made quick.” So I reverted to my “go-to” script. “How many leaders do we have in here?” As usual,  a few hands up, but most people awkwardly glance around, unsure of whether or not to raise their hand… *hits pause*
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 I want to pose the question to you…”how many leaders do we have reading this message?” God is calling you to the front of the class. He is calling you out of your element. The comfort zone you have spent so much time is has become too small. You have begun to realize that you are no longer comfortable there, so it’s becoming a zone of familiarity rather than comfort. It’s time to step out. It’s time to lead.
 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
I realized a few things in that uncomfortable spot:
  1. It’s not about me – I mentioned this in a previous blog, but God reinforces it daily. Nothing I’ve been through was about me. Those uncomfortable moments being called on in class where never about me. He uses those moments to make me compassionate to others. Those moments make me empathetic. Those moments allow me the ability to look at a young girl and say, “It’s OK if you can’t think of an answer to my question. We’ll move on to someone else.”
  2. God can work with you right where you are – we often think, “if I could just do/be/get/say/meet ______ everything would be great.” I’ve not had to get over my introversion to do anything God has asked me to do. When I get into the flow of God’s work, I get in my zone. A zone more than a “comfort zone.” It’s a zone of peace. It’s a zone that is familiar even though I’ve never ventured there.
  3. His plan is SO much greater than ours – When I started my blog, I never imagined it would be read around the world. I never pictured myself on the radio. I never imagined traveling to different cities and sharing my story of redemption, forgiveness and hope.
  4. There is healing in helping – Tied into point two, society has conditioned us to believe that brokenness can not bring healing. That broken people have nothing to offer from their experiences. We look at people who are divorced and say, “who are they to give marriage advice?!” We look at those who have lost it all, and say, “who are they to give me input on how to spend my money?!” We have unknowingly internalized these perspectives, and those flawed viewpoints discourage us from stepping out and helping others. We feel “who am I to speak to others about an issue that I struggle with myself?” As you begin reaching out to those who need you, those who need your story, those who need your brokenness, God begins to heal you.

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I love this structure. It was randomly placed on the beach in California. Broken pieces… scraps… crafted into something uniquely beautiful. At first glance, I was uncertain of what it is, but as I got closer I saw that it has a place to sit and provides shade from the sun. As flimsy as it looks, it was strong. It could withstand the elements around it. It is a place of refuge…. You too can be a place of refuge for others. A place of peace and comfort away from the judgement of the world.

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If I was asked the question, “who in this room is a leader?” I still don’t know that I would raise my hand, but I do know that His call is for me to lead…. and that is His call for you too.
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Where do you find yourself hesitant to go? Where is that place God is calling you to that you aren’t certain you are ready for? Go. Go fearfully if you must, but go. It’s a beautiful place.
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One of my favorite books which highlights a story of brokenness to Abundance is Lisa Nichols Abundance Now. Purchase it today at my online store.
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Connect with me on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, and let’s talk about that place. Maybe you’ve already stepped out into it, or maybe your just considering it. I’d love to hear your stories!

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