Thursday, September 11, 2014

When your heart's busted

How do we know if our heart's busted?

There's probably a good chance it's been busted, is busted, or will be busted.

But what I know, is that a busted heart is an opportunity. A grace opportunity.

Isn't it true that life is hard. Most of the time. And isn't it true that we cannot control other people's bustedness. And sometimes all this bustedness spills over and busts us. Breaks us. Brings us low and hurting and broken in bits.

Every day I see kids whose hearts are busted.

The young woman whose family is breaking right down the middle and in the middle is where she's caught. Heart: busted.

The young man whose mom is tired and worn and whose dad is disengaged and unavailable, leaving this boy's heart busted.

The girl whose dad had a CAT scan the other day, whose stomach fills with fluid, who battles hard the cancer. She's struggling to be strong. Heart: busted.

The friend whose marriage is teetering on the edge of gone. Who's tired of battling apathy and complacency. Who sees few options. Heart: busted.

There's a difference between a broken heart and a busted heart. It's this:

Broken hearts can fill back up, they can mend with time. Broken hearts are coming of age loves that go awry and disappointments that go deep or the path of life that goes bonkers.

But a busted heart. That's different.

It's a very slight connotative change between busted and broken that speaks to the woundedness we all carry. Bustedness is a result of the burdens we end up carrying for others. The woundedness of others that then spills onto us and leaves us wounded.

Busted is harder to put back together. Busted hurts deeper and leaves bigger scars. And needs bigger band-aids. And even when it seems we don't need band-aids, the tracks of all this running and carrying and the burden of all these heavy yokes runs deep and is harder to wash away.

It's overwhelming. All these busted hearts. They walk around me every day. They quietly soldier on while the busted bits swirl and sway and taunt and tease and they soldier on, wounded and weary.

The busted don't volunteer their brokenness. They don't play the victim card or place blame on anyone. They resign themselves to being busted and take one more step. They are the ones life knocks down hard, and though they aren't quick to get back up, they get back up. They are the ones whose souls stoop heavy and weary.

They are the courageous hearts who dare to believe that the next step might be easier than the one they just painfully labored through when there's no reason to believe it. The busted are the ones for whom my heart aches and cheers.

The stats drown us. Teenage suicide, drug use, alcohol abuse, domestic violence, violence in general. It takes courage to face all this bustedness. And sometimes, most times, it's straight up sad.

The world shouldn't be so hard. Life shouldn't be so hard.

But I have to believe that God's grace is bigger than all of this.

I have to believe that He can make something good, something beautiful from all this bustedness. That there's meaning in the madness and God's sovereignty trumps all.

Busted hearts are God's specialty. He's got grace enough for all the busted, broken bits in all of us. And wouldn't it be wondrous, if we grabbed each other tight and true, and together walked all of our bustedness straight to the cross?

And wouldn't it be wondrous if we saw these busted pieces as soul-cracks for God's grace to fill and shine bright through?

And wouldn't it be wondrous if we dusted ourselves off for the umpteenth time and believed that those pieces that went missing, that were smashed to smithereens and then scattered to the far corners, that those pieces God has made new because He won't ever snuff out a smoldering wick and He won't ever break a bruised reed.

I believe God has big plans for our busted hearts. Our bustedness can reach more dark places because really, aren't we all the walking busted? And when God's grace shines through our cracks, we light up the shadows and bring healing to the dark places. When our bustedness becomes a vehicle for God's glory, for God's grace, it suddenly seems different. Like we're not so busted as we were just a minute ago.  

Here's the truth: Our cracks, our bustedness, our brokenness are calling cards for the immeasurable vastness of God's unfathomable grace.

May my life, my bustedness, my brokenness point others to Jesus and shine brightly in dark places. And may we grab on tight to each other and let all that Jesus-glory light shine boldly through the chinks in our hearts.

Grace Always Rises,


  1. "Here's the truth: Our cracks, our bustedness, our brokenness are calling cards for the immeasurable vastness of God's unfathomable grace."

    So wise.
    Love you lots. xoxo

  2. So true. Thankful for God's immeasurable grace!