It was nothing like the movies. You know, boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy and girl live happily ever after.
In fact, someone forgot to tell this particular boy about the "happily ever after" bit altogether, and there was absolutely nothing sweet or beautiful about the end of our story. There was only emptiness; heavy, broken emptiness and a desperate ache so deep it made it even hurt to breathe.
Eventually, pain gave way to guilt, and the venom of regret rushed through my veins for months, killing every remnant of self-worth I had left. Like band-aids over gaping wounds, pretty words and impossible promises had covered my deepest insecurities, convincing me I was finally whole. But his rejection revealed the band-aids for a lie; they had concealed my needs but could never meet them. They could never heal me.
For almost two years, I believed healing wasn't even possible. I was damaged, forever. I had compromised my standards, justified poor decisions, and made painful mistakes. Loneliness was my consequence, the punishment I claimed. And then God, in His infinite grace, led me to this verse during my quiet time one morning:
"He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives." Isaiah 61:1
The reality of Christ reaching down to clean out and stitch up the jagged, tattered pieces of my heart began to release me from Satan's lie. Heartbreak didn't have to be my punishment; it could be an opportunity to grow closer to Jesus. In it, I had a choice: I could allow bitterness and shame to harden within the cracks of my heart, or I could pour out my pain and trust Him to bind me up. Despite my pain, I chose the latter.
At one point or another, we will all face this choice. It may be the end of a relationship, the betrayal of a friend, or the passing of a loved one. It may be another pain, entirely. But no matter the cause of our heartache, it is the same Savior who promises to mend every rip and tear and hole within us. He is longing to set us free. We only have to let Him.
"The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners." Isaiah 61:1
"For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." John 3:17
"I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:10
Brittany Williamson is grateful for frappuccinos, her four-legged son Hoyt, and a God who heals (though not exactly in that order). You can read more about her experience with heartbreak and healing on her blog, Faith in Between.
© 2011 by Brittany Williamson. All rights reserved.