Broken

  • deeclarknz.com A friend once gave me a beautiful glass friendship ball. I hung it in the window above my sink where the sun would shine through it lighting my kitchen with beautiful blue hues of colour. While mopping my floor one day, the mop handle hit and dislodged it from where it hung and it crashed to the floor breaking into a million pieces. My heart sank. I scooped up the pieces desperate for way to put the pieces back together. However, that was never going to happen. It was broken beyond repair.deeclarknz.comEvery time my heart has been shattered, I have felt certain that it could never be put back together. And every time , without exception, not only has my heart mended but it has become larger, stronger and more loving for the breaking. A wonderful truth in life is that we are stronger, gentler, more resilient and more beautiful than we imagine. The Psalmist David encourages us that The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit and heals their wounds. I have found this to be true. Each and every time.deeclarknz.comThe nature of being broken is that perspective is hard to maintain when we are in pain, when in fear, when confused or worried. Brokenness limits our view, for the moment. One of the purposes of love is to help each other not stay limited in our view of life. When helping each other move beyond our limited view of life, we are lifting each other above the pain and reaching for the feeling of health.  

deeclarknz.com“To be broken is no reason to see all things as broken.” -M. Nepo

In my life, I have found that my brokenness eventually became useful in reaching out to other broken hearts. Like seeds broken open and then bear fruit, we can use our broken places to meet each other and be touched by each other. When broken of all the “stuff” that gets in the way of being in touch with others, we begin to know each other outside of our differences in this strange, mutual place of the heart. This is why when we fall, we lift each other; or when in pain, we hold each other; or why when joy floods in, we dance together. It’s a way that the many pieces of the heart loves itself back together.

Lastly, I have come to know that hurting people hurt people. When I come across such a person, they are crying out for understanding, comfort and a safe place to heal. Fire doesn’t fight fire. Nor does pain heal pain. Hurting people need to know that they can trust again, love again and hope again. 

I want my brokenness to open my heart enough that I can reach the hurting with the truth that the Psalmist David shared, that wounds can be healed and that in brokenness there is someone near to help lift them above the painful moments.

The best way to heal a broken heart is not to isolate it and close it down. The best way to heal brokenness, strangely, is the art of continuing to open yourself up. To remember that all of life is not where you are at the moment. To find usefulness in the pieces that remain. To reach outward and yes, upward. 

Even if it doesn’t feel like it today, unlike broken glass, a broken heart will mend. 

D

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Broken  

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24 proverbs that are just plain common sense

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the Webster dictionary defines wisdom as

knowledge that is gained by having many experiences in life.

it’s interesting to me that Solomon found common sense that -after all the centuries that have passed- is still common sense today.

check out these proverbs that are just plain common sense.

giving advice:

Some people like to do things their own way, and they get upset when people give them advice.

the stuff that comes out of our mouth:

The tongue can speak words that bring life or death. Those who love to talk must be ready to accept what it brings.

Foolish people don’t want to learn from others. They only want to talk about their own ideas.

Foolish people hurt themselves when they speak. Their own words trap them.

Foolish people say things to start arguments. They are just asking for a beating.

An insulted friend is harder to win back than a city with strong walls.

People love to hear gossip. It is like tasty food on its way to the stomach.

The words of a discreet and wise man’s mouth are like a gushing stream sparkling, fresh, pure, and life-giving.

Let people finish speaking before you try to answer them. That way you will not embarrass yourself and look foolish.

Your words can be as satisfying as fruit, as pleasing as the food that fills your stomach.

The first person to speak always seems right until someone comes and asks the right questions.

results of our actions:

Do something evil, and people will hate you. Do something shameful, and they will have no respect for you.

Someone who does careless work is as bad as someone who destroys things.

Giving gifts can open many doors and help you meet important people.

justice:

You must be fair in judging others. It is wrong to favor the guilty and rob the innocent of justice.

attitude:

The rich think their wealth will protect them. They think it is a strong fortress.

A proud person will soon be ruined, but a humble person will be honored.

A good attitude will support you when you are sick, but if you give up, nothing can help.

The poor are polite when they beg for help. The rich are rude with their answer.

Wise people want to learn more, so they listen closely to gain knowledge.

communication:

The best way to settle an argument between two powerful people may be to roll dice.

Arguments separate people like the strong bars of a palace gate.

relationships:

If you find a wife, you have found something good. She shows that the Lord is happy with you.

Some friends are fun to be with, but a true friend can be better than a brother.

how to prove you are sagacious

20140316-163915.jpgare you sagacious?

women my age might imagine it to be a description of what gravity tends to do to their body over the years.

but no.

not even close.

20140316-173223.jpgif you are sagacious -you have or show keen mental discernment and good judgement; you are wise or shrewd.

i think being sagacious would benefit my journey. how about you?

there is a simple test.

this is how you know if you are sagacious:

Wise are those who restrain their talking; people with understanding are coolheaded. Fools who keep quiet are deemed wise; those who shut their lips are smart. -Proverbs

have you ever been told, “if you know what’s good for you…” or “if you were smart you’d shut your mouth!”

the word smart refers to being sagacious or prudent.

this week, i have shared with you several posts concerning anger.

in my post how to handle emotions: anger, i discussed that anger can be a very useful emotion and that instinctively we feel anger when we are at risk of danger or loss. it’s easy to see this displayed in the animal kingdom; wound a bear, and watch it get angry. attempt to take a bone that your dog is enjoying and, quickly, you realize he’s not going to just lie there and let you take it from him.

we need our angry emotions. they are a safety mechanism.

however, beyond safety…they can get us into a lot of trouble.

do you understand the number 1 way that we get ourselves into trouble when we feel a burst of anger?

our mouth!

you know, “my mouth has a way if getting me into trouble!”

boy, do i know that statement is the truth.

how?

by experience.

throughout my 54 year journey, i have been known to have “a mouth on me”.

here are 3 things that have made my blood boil over the years:

1. rudeness. if i am sitting in a resturant and a customer is being rude and demeaning to the waitress, i see red!

2. cruelty. i don’t like bullying in any form. when i observe cruelty to someone who is helpless due to age, strength or capability, i want to explode!

3. i hate to be told to “shut up”. i think it’s a rude statement so it’s similar to my first reason. when my daughter was very young, i told her it was a naughty word. so, she would gasp when she heard someone say it. i am pretty shy at times and have not always been comfortable with having my say…so, i don’t want to be told that i have to shut up in the middle of a sentence. i can get fired up!

these are three things that “push my button.” my anger button.

it has taken me many years and resulting pain to fully gain the “understanding” that it is wise to keep my mouth restrained and if i can’t restraint it -to just keep it shut.

now, that does not mean i don’t stand up for the people being mistreated.

there is a right way and a wrong way to confront someone. anger tends to cause us to forget reason, common sense and good judgement.

how can you prove you are sagacious? by having the good judgement and presence of mind to understand and discern when to speak (with restraint) or when to shut your mouth (rather just be quiet).

a wise person, a person who wants to prevent heartache, pain and suffering to their heart understand that being cool-headed when they need to address a situation will bring better results.

usually, we learn this the hard way…

by personal experience.

the Proverbs tell us that wisdom cries out to us so that heartache and pain can be prevented.

believe me, at 54 year old woman and a person who hates to be told to “shut up”, i’ve learned it’s better that i restrain my own mouth.

the reward?

peace.

i enjoy peace much more than turmoil, conflict and heartache.

have you ever said, “i wish i had kept my big mouth shut?”

yeah, me, too.

maybe next time…

it would be wise to do just that.

have a peaceful week,
D

a strong person does not get angry quickly

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He that is slow to anger is better than a mighty warrior; better to be someone who controls his temper than someone who conquers a city. -Proverbs

my husband constantly tells me how much strategy, discipline and strength are required in the art of war. warriors train to be focused, function in the worst of conditions, make wise decisions, and to be strong enough to face an opponent and overcome him.

i feel a great deal of respect and honor when i meet a member of the military. although i’ve never been to battle, i understand this job is not an easy one.

the men and women who face our nation’s enemies on the battlefield are admired for their strength physically and mentally.

wisdom tells us that the person who can control his/her anger is stronger than a great warrior.

it shows as much strength (and requires as much strength) as it does for someone who defeats a city.

in other words, it’s takes great strength of character to not fly-off-the-handle. you must train and practice in varying circumstance to build the skill necessary to maintain self-control.

it’s not an easy skill to learn.

however, developing self-control over anger makes us more wise and set us on the path of success. after all the proverbs are given to us to give us keys to living more successful as we travel our journey.

next time your temper flares…maybe counting to 10 is a good thing to practice.

10…9…8…7…6…5…4…3…2…!

slow down, think clearly and keep a cool head!

how to handle emotions: anger

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let’s talk about how to handle the emotion called anger.

if you have been following my blog this week i shared a couple of blogs on anger: the path fear follows and to whom is anger most dangerous.

20140314-011723.jpganger is a valuable emotion when managed properly.

to a great extent the sudden excitement on the reception of an injury is involuntary, and consequently innocent. anger is excited when a horse kicks us; when we stub our toe on a chair or when someone raises his hand to strike us. the purpose is rouse us to an immediate defense of ourselves when suddenly attacked. it prompts immediate action to self-protection. however, when that is done its proper purpose ceases.

beyond this purpose, anger is like poison.

20140314-014558.jpgthis is why Paul offered the wisdom to “Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry—but don’t use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don’t stay angry. Don’t go to bed angry.” (MSG) you might be more familiar with the KJV that basically says to anger and sin not; don’t let the sun go down on your wrath.

either way, the wisdom in this advice is that anger should be dealt with quickly and not allowed to sit within our heart boiling away until it fuels a desire to extract revenge.

valuable advice…

difficult to practice.

following a very volatile divorce and custody battle, i found my heart broken and full of pain.

each unresolved, threatening issue caused me to feel more and more vulnerable and at risk.

there were valid reasons for my anger and i desperately wanted to save myself from real and perceived danger.

20140314-023308.jpganger began to fill my heart.

my heart was becoming a storage vessel. mark twain stated that anger is an acid that can do more harm to a vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.

this was true in my case.

not only, was my anger ineffective in dealing with my ex, but my heart was so full of anger that i became explosive at minor annoyances in other areas of my life. the anger was refusing to remain contained.

i was losing my ability to walk my journey in peace.

this made my existence miserable.

the price was far to high…i began to crave the return of peace in my life. i had held on to this anger far too long.

i had to get a grip on this emotion.

20140314-032922.jpgfirst, i had to stop treating the anger as a cherished treasure. no more defending my right to be angry. it may have had a purpose but it was not something to cherish or continually reflect upon.

i had to “let it go!” i could not sleep on it one more night. this was difficult because i wanted justice.

Or rather i had convinced myself that justice was the reason i needed to hold on so tightly. the reality is that i had been harbouring a desire for revenge.

i also cherished ill-will against the person and not the action.

i started by making a list of appropriate responses; speak kindly or don’t speak at all; make maintaining peace a top priority; listen more carefully to what was being said and not what i perceived as being said; take a “time out” if i felt my anger levels rising; and no matter the action-forgive and release quickly (stop rehearsing how i had been wronged in my head and to others).

it took practice. it required restraint. sometimes I had to just be “quiet” until i returned to a calm state of mind. and i prayed a lot…”Lord, give me strength!” my southern friends will know what I mean. 😎

i did get there.

if you find, your heart constantly exploding in anger, remember:

-anger may not be unavoidable.

-anger has proper bounds. do not allow it to overstep them.

-do not cherish it.

-do not let it remain in your heart all day long. let it go as quickly as possible.

-let the last rays of sun find you always peaceful and calm.

peace is far more rewarding and makes life’s journey enjoyable.

D

the path fear follows

20140309-231252.jpgthe unknown
and the unpredictable…the what “if”s…maybe “i can’t”s…the different…

all strike a chord of fear deep in the heart.

this chord sings out that we are helplessness…that our dreams, our future and even our very survival is under threat.

illusive threats pierce through our hopes and frustration sets in.

frustration is enraging; igniting the fiery emotion…anger.

anger is powerful, swift and blinds the heart to reason. anger causes us to want to fight leading us to aggressive behaviours.

but anger must have fuel…it will fizzle with time…and hatred is the fuel that keeps anger burning.

i have found that hate is like cancer. if unattended, it grows deep roots within the heart crowding out love.

hatred alienates us from each other. the heart, dark with hatred, closes in on itself and is no longer capable of fully opening up to embrace love of any kind.

withdrawal from love causes suffering which takes many forms; unforgiveness, regret, discontent, resentment and apathy.

suffering places us back to the unknown, thus reverting to fear…the cycle continues.

we fear a broken heart…

when we fear having our heart broken, it’s not so much about the pain as it is the thought that if broken we can never be whole again.

the anger begins with someone who has broken our heart in the past but swiftly moves toward hatred of potential heart breakers. a closed, isolated heart suffers in loneliness…fearing it will never find it’s deepest desire again.

we fear each other…

we fear that as we observe another person’s creativity (sometimes their very “being”) that there will be no room left for who we are or what we have to give.

fear is birthed in our thoughts and we must be courageous enough to look at it head on…sometimes shaking in our boots…and render it powerless. we must strip fear of it’s power before it takes root.

fear is a lie.

truth, love and hope know no fear…

they blossom in the heart making no room for fear to reside.

how to maintain your hope

deeclarknz.com

eat honey, it is good.

deeclarknz.com

the honeycomb is sweet in your mouth.

bees

know that wisdom is like that for your whole being.

deeclarknz.com

if you find it,

bees

there is a future for you,

bees

and your hope will not be cut off.

-Proverbs 24:13, 14