Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Heartbreak is Beautiful

My lovely sister-in-law texted me the YouTube link to this song today.  The first time I watched it and listened to the lyrics, I couldn't stop the tears from springing to my eyes or swallow the sudden lump in my throat.  Like so many people, it feels like this song was written just for me.

God has led me through more brokenness and heartbreak throughout the past several years, and especially this year, than is easy to recall.  Humanly, I've often wished or prayed that He'd take the pain and suffering away.  The mountains of difficult relationships, broken hearts, physical pain, emotional trauma, sleepless nights, floods of tears, and financial/job related times I've just wished them all to be gone.

"Life decided to change my plans and I found a mountain in the middle of my road."  That is how I could describe my whole life.  At the same time, watching my God bring beauty from the pain, flood me with His grace in even greater amounts than my innumerable tears, and shower me with love when I didn't think I could take another minute of the suffering, has made it all worth it.   

My life is nothing like I ever pictured it would be.  Nothing like it.  But as God has stripped things away one after another, after another, after another, I've been forced to cling more tightly to Him and Him alone.  This is what makes it all a beautiful heartbreak.

Heartbreak is beautiful when Jesus is glorified through it.  

Heartbreak is beautiful when I am sanctified through it.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it draws friends and family closer.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it unites the Body of Christ.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it becomes a testimony to a lost world.

Heartbreak is beautiful when God's hand holds it.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it draws us into closer relationship with Jesus.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it strips prejudices and differences in struggling relationships.

Heartbreak is beautiful when it touches us, having passed through our Father's hand.

Heartbreak is beautiful when there is an eternal good purpose for it.  

Heartbreak is beautiful when we let Jesus make it beautiful.

I'm not going to lie.  Heartbreak is hard.  Incredibly hard.  Letting it be "beautiful" is a daily, hourly choice.  It's hard to choose trust, faith, joy, love, and contentment over bitterness, anger, and discouragement.  It's hard to trust God to make each heartbreak beautiful when, from our point of view, it looks ugly as hell and hurts so much we can barely breathe.

But those hours, days, weeks, and months when we let God take each mountain, storm, and broken piece and hold it all in His hands, life becomes beautiful, no matter how painful.  It's only something He can do.  And the beauty, grace, and faith that He grows in us through the storms is the most beautiful and precious thing He could ever do in and for us.

"But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold." (Job 23:10)

"He has made everything beautiful in its time.  Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end." (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

"Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith in this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.  And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us." (Romans 5:1-5)

"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." (Romans 8:18)

"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified."  (Romans 8:28-30)

"What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?  Who shall bring a charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies.  Who is he who condemns? Itis Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  As it is written: 'For Your sake we are killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.'  Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.  For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created things, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:31-39)

"And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure.  Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me.  And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake.  For when I am weak, then I am strong."  (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

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