Being broken is hard. Being broken means I will hurt the people I love most, being broken means I can’t contain it into a nice neat box of manageable items and experiences. Being broken means I will hurt you. It will manifest itself in ways that aren’t polite or helpful. Being broken means I will not ask for help and shout at you when you try. Being broken means I will do this time and time again. Being broken means I can’t contain my mess into nice manageable chunks and being broken means that’s what I hate the most. Being broken means I don’t want to break and make a fat mess all over the place. Being broken means I want to show that I have all this sorted out. Being broken means I hate receiving because it means you have seen that I am broken.
Loving me is hard, loving you is hard when we are together with our defenses down, this is costly, this is painful, this involves facing the reality that we are not perfect. That we are in fact broken. I’m tired of pretending I am not broken but I find it hard to know how to express that in ways that don’t splurge my brokenness all over people, mainly because that’s my pride again, not wanting to get in the way in case I alienate all around.
But that’s the reality of this life for all of us. We are all broken and messy, we are all called to take each others flack as the broken pieces of our lives shatter and shard into all around. We live in a mess of pain and confusion most of the time. We can pretend no more. The best thing about this body of Christ thing is that we absorb each others pain and mess, that we share it around, that we family each other in these times. I’m ridiculously fortunate enough to know the unconditional love of my family. It’s a rare thing in this world. I love being able to cry and rant and rave at them (they might be less enamoured with this than me:)), I love turning up at their houses and being able to cry on them and know their tears with me. And I love being in this family in my house where we do the same, we strop at each other, we cry with each other, we’re learning the ways and means of the unconditional love of our Father as he teaches us how to live His ways in His family.
Family isn’t limited to blood or upbringing. We’re part of family here and now and that’s one of the most profound things about being a Christian. It’s not about the rules, not about the religion, not about saying the right things, not about looking good in this world. It’s about being part of the best family in the world. Where we are dearly loved everyday. Where we weep and rejoice with each other, where we share in the mundane and the deeply profound, where we laugh, hold hands, pray, watch tv, shout at each other, insult each other and deeply deeply love each other. Because we know we are loved by One better than all of us. And so we look out for each other, we lay aside our own interests. We often joke in our house that we are married to each other and sometimes that’s what it feels like, we do things to support each other, to hold each other as more important than what I want to do right now.
We can do all of this, it’s no mere desire for utopia, it’s way way better than that, it’s admitting we are broken and loving in the reality of that. Because One man did so much more than that for us, One man became broken so we could be whole. One man gave up the glory of heaven and died for us, one man poured himself out for us. There isn’t any other better expression of love than Jesus. His is the path we follow each day, that rejection of self and commitment to the people around us.
And that’s the battle we will face until we stand before him. Choosing each day His path. Each moment, His path. Saying sorry when we hourly get it wrong, accepting his crazy beautiful love again and again and learning the tone, rhythm, feel and directives of the family of God.