Is it an understatement to say that life is hard right now? I don't think it is. Our world is full of hurting people. The cause of the hurt is diverse, yet the pain is prevalent. Maybe it's a daughter who has had to say goodbye to her mama for the final time or a son who unexpectedly lost his dad. It feels too soon, too raw, too painful. How about the mom who has prayed fervently for her prodigal child, but they continue to stray? Loss of careers, loss of dreams, loss of hope. The song of the broken permeates our world.
We want to lay down alone and suffer quietly as the grief isolates us, no matter what the cause. But we are not meant to suffer alone.
"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit."
God is with us, but He also sends us helpers. The helpers are those who are brave enough to step into our pain and bring a melody of hope into our lives. The helpers are often those who have sung a melody similar to ours. They have walked the disappointing and discouraging road of loss. But they know some things that we may not know when we are in the depth of our sorrow. They know that there is light at the end of the tunnel and victory in the devastating loss. The helpers quietly step in and lift up a song of encouragement. They keep stepping in and loving us, even when we sometimes fight against their help.
"(God) comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God."
2 Corinthians 1:4
When we allow them to step into our pain, a fascinating thing happens. We find courage and strength as the chords of our journeys intertwine. Each of us has a unique chord that only we can sing, but a beautiful melody begins to emerge when joined together. Our lives sing a song that is birthed in our stories.
Some chords are born from the deepest wound, but they bring healing and reach us down to the center of our soul when sung. When I think of that deep chord, I think of a beautiful woman I am close to. The life she thought she had shattered in just a few months. The emotional damage is like a powerful tornado that struck in the middle of the night and wiped out everything she had spent a lifetime building. If you saw her today, you wouldn't know that bitterness and anger continue to threaten to overtake her. But she gets up every day and fights against those emotions. She courageously gives her pain to God. Then she turns her heart outward to other hurting people and offers her hymn of pain to their songs.
I think of another dear friend who has struggled with a painful medical diagnosis for years. She has a right to be discouraged. While others have received healing, her body continues to attack itself. On the surface, you wouldn't know the depth of her heartache, as she refuses to give in to the discouragement. Every day raises her head and offers the ballad of her life to the broken. She is determined to bring glory to God in the pain-and she does. The music of her life brings beauty and refreshment to those around her.
Yet another wonderful friend who exudes joy and makes you smile every time you are around her. Happiness seems to be the ingredient to her song, however, you see the depth of her music under the surface. Her joy is not some feel-good, happy-go-lucky emotion. Her life has been marked by the continued wreckage of a broken family member. If you knew her complete story, you wouldn't blame her for giving up hope and abandoning joy. But she doesn't. She declares, "He is everything! His grace is sufficient, and His love is complete! I will praise Him this day…I will speak of His goodness!" In giving her pain to God, she determines that her song of praise will not be silenced. Her praise encourages and enriches the lives of those around her.
"In the darkest night, He is composing your song. In the valley, He is tuning your voice. In the storm clouds, He is deepening your range. In the rain showers, He is sweetening your melody. In the cold, He is giving your notes expression. And as you pass at times from hope to fear, He is perfecting the message of your lyrics." Streams of the Desert May 30.
In your darkest days, God is producing a symphony of healing that only you can sing. Don't allow your melody to be restrained. It is uniquely yours, and combined with the ballad of others, it creates a harmonious Song of the Broken that brings hope and healing to the world.