Broken

brokenI pulled into Joann’s for my weekly pickup of Love Rock supplies a few weeks ago and realized as I started to search that I didn’t have any Love Rocks on me. I must admit…I felt a little panic.

I then noticed a small broken rock on the floor of my car. It had been there for awhile. It was not round or even oval, not smooth, not polished or even a nice gray color. It did, however, have a heart on it – it was indeed a Love Rock.

I held this Love Rock in my hand and had the thought, “Why isn’t this one good enough?”

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.

Is sharing love and joy conditional? And should love and joy only be given to those we deem deserving of it? Who gets to decide if someone is deserving?

Yesterday morning I turned on the news to find out that an old neighbor of ours moved back to Forest Grove. I never knew this neighbor when she lived around the corner from us, but we are very connected now. This neighbor has spent the last 10 months away from her family and now she is home. I’m sure much like we are, she is broken.

In the last 10 months, Tom and I have been on a mission to spread love and joy in honor of our community and our girls, Anna and Abigail. We are not choosing to spread love to only the people who are perfect, smooth and polished – I’m not sure if we would be able to find anyone like that.  Rather, we share with everyone, being especially mindful of those who are broken in ways like us and our neighbor.

I know that when the day comes that I finally get to go home to be with God and my girls, I will see firsthand how God does not discriminate against His people. I am sure He does not divide us based on color, lifestyle or sin to determine who is more deserving of Heaven. We are all God’s children and His love is overflowing for each and every one of us – all we have to do is invite God into our lives and believe in that Love.

God commands us to love our neighbor and I know that is not always easy to do. Some would wonder why I would choose to love this particular neighbor after all we have been through. My answer is simple: I forgive and love her because God forgives and loves me. I am choosing love because this is what God commands me to do, even in the midst of unimaginable pain.

In choosing love I have found peace.

We are all broken, imperfect, rough around the edges and unpolished, just like my Love Rock. My hope is that the love and joy we spread is always rooted in God’s truth and is truly unconditional.

I will no longer be pulling only the perfect rocks from the bucket.

 

 

 

26 thoughts on “Broken

  1. Thank you, Susan, for sharing once again your love and God’s love, and for being an example of the believers. I briefly shared your story today at a class I was at called “Finding Shade in Christ’s Grace,” and spoke of how you are an example of recognizing the Hand of God in all things. Thank you for being that example, Susan and Tom!

    Love you!

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  2. I have a secret just between us. I don’t think Forest Grove adopted your family this last year. I think you adopted an infectious, love-reeking, God-reflecting attitude of mercy and grace. The story I write in my head is that Jesus just stood between you and despair and you had little choice but to seek love. The alternative was too terrible. Somehow a whole community got washed up in that love-drenched wave and caught by His current. I’m a crusty piece of earth with a tattered fabric heart that my Father in Heaven indelibly Modge podged on my chest like a Holy Spirit tattoo. Thank you for seeing the little rocks in what others would see as a heap of gravel.

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  3. You probably know how this particular message hits home to me> You and I have known for a very long time that the imperfect NEEDS love and understanding, and sometimes, thats all it takes to help smooth the edges…. and then they can start to polish themselves in to the perfect rock they want to be… Love you and thank you!

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  4. That is so unbelievably beautiful and I really needed that reminder in my day today. THANKYOU for once again providing me with perspective.

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  5. Thank you for your words. I am sitting at the outlet mall in Lincoln City OR and am brought to tears by your words.such good thoughts for my heart.

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  6. You are the inspiration we all need on a daily basis. Thank you for reminding all of us that we are all God’s children and none of us are perfect. I look at my life so differently now. We love you so much and there is never a day that goes by that we don’t think about you, tom, your girls, Linus and Sampson too and say our prayers. God has connected us all for a reason even though we aren’t seeing the “big” picture at least we get a glimpse.

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  7. I don’t think that there is anyone out there that could stand a little love and joy in their lives Practice Random Acts of Kindness is what I have always lived by you never know who or what anyone’s battle is. We are all of the human race smile and say “have a good day” thank you for being you! Please know that you have made me a better person ~ love and joy to you always!

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  8. You continue to be one if my greatest life teachers Susan! I love the way you chose Love and Joy and I love the way you chose to follow Jesus, especially when it’s got to be so hard. I love you!

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  9. Thank you so much for sharing. I love the way you love, not in word only. You speak grace, and you say it well. I love how close you are to Jesus. It’s encouraging to see the way God moves when we let Him use us. You are beautiful. Thanks for boasting about what God is doing. ❤

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  10. I have been praying extra hard these past couple of days for you, your family, your neighbor and all involved. I also pray that everyone that feels the need to share their negative comments about the situation would read this blog first!

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  11. Very eloquently said. And what a powerful analogy. Thank you for continuing to be such an inspiration to me & so many others. God is using your willingness & love & forgiveness to reach out & touch so many people. And this truly does express the love & joy of Anna & Abby. I pray God will continue to bless you & Tom and that you will continually feel God’s loving & strong arms around you!

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  12. I saw the story on the news yesterday. I cried after hearing you and your neighbor speak. What a beacon of hope you are for a broken world. Thank you.

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  13. Wow! What a powerful message. It felt like God’s Word was flowing directly through you directly to me. I am once again amazed how God is working through you and how effective it is. I have heard this message a hundred times but never have I listened before. Never has it been so meaningful.
    And I think about your neighbor and I wonder if she will ever know how blessed she is because you have chosen to follow God’s example of love and forgiveness.
    I am inspired to be more loving and more forgiving and for that I thank you.

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  14. What a beautiful reminder and reflection on the rocks being perfect. I have had the same thoughts about the imperfect rocks. I will not leave them out as well. Much love to you and Tom!

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  15. What a wonderful thing you have written. And how wonderful is it that you have found it in your heart to feel love for her. You are an incredible mother and an incredible person. I feel a loss for words just reading what you have to say. My heart is with you and your family. Godspeed to Anna and Abigail.

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