Heartbreak Happens

About two weeks ago I received a message from a Facebook friend asking me how I have dealt with heartbreak. For starters, I am not a relationship expert nor do I claim to be one. I’ll let Dr. Phil keep his crown. I can tell you one thing though, I feel like because I’ve done relationships all wrong that really by process of elimination I’ve become wiser at what works. Fortunately, God is always growing me in this area and I need all the help I can get! I’ve included my response below, but have decided to expand on it slightly. I don’t like using the term “heartbreak” when referring to relationships that end. I prefer to call it “heart dents” or possibly even “heart cracks” but I think there’s other suffering in this world that literally breaks the human heart. I only know this because I pray for God to break my heart for the things that breaks his and when I hear of a story of an innocent child being abused that breaks my heart. When I hear of someone who left their faith or had a falling out and no longer believes in Jesus that quite simply crushes my heart. Breaks my heart. Destroys my heart. It’s not the same feeling as when a boyfriend breaks up with me, but I am in no way trying to discount or define what it means to you. That takes personal discernment on the condition of your heart. Every situation is different. Every hurt is unique to that individual who experiences it. We are just hear to share and learn from each other.
Handling Heartbreak

STEP 1. Accept that it’s okay to be hurt and to express all those feelings to God. God wants us to pour out our heart to him like water Lamentations 2:19. I cry. I doubt God. I doubt myself. I try to figure out why I continue to make messes in my life. I’m not happy to admit, but that’s a part of my heart dents. Bring all your emotions and lay them at the feet of Jesus. Prayer is the most important conversation of my day. I am trying to become better at taking everything to God and then deciding if I need to take anything to someone else. Often I go the person before going to God. Seek first his kingdom.

STEP 2. I have to ask myself and REALLY ask myself do I believe God’s word? Do I believe he is who he says he is? Do I believe he is good? Do I believe romans 8:28 is true that he will work ALL things for his good even the things that cause me pain? Do I believe Jeremiah 29:11-13 that he knows the plans he has for me plans to prosper me plans to give me a hope and a future? Do I believe what is says in Job 42:2 that I know God can do ALL things and that no purpose of His can be thwarted? Do I believe it, really? If I don’t question him when he provides good things for my life why would I dare question him during the bad? I keep in mind that in James 1:2 it says I should consider it PURE JOY when I face trials of many kinds because it is a testing of my faith and produces perseverance. It’s a test. Don’t give up. It’s not about what you are going through but what God wants to do through you in this moment. Start asking Him to reveal himself to you and to heal your heart. Trials temporarily seem like a burden but they will turn into your biggest blessings with time. Romans 12:12 be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Keep that verse tucked into your heart.

STEP 3. Surround yourself with community. Ecclesiastes 4:10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.” I attend a small church. Nothing gets past my church family and for that I am THANKFUL. I had an overflow of people texting me telling me how much they care about me. How much God loves me and I am his princess. How much he will take what I thought was good and give me what is His best. My family and coworkers sent me words of encouragement or invited me to spend time with them. I had a plethora of people surrounding me to pick me back up when I fell. They nudged me forward when my feet felt too heavy to press on. Minimizing isolation and surrounding yourself with people you love and trust is crucial, but don’t just keep tossing yourself into a new person, new activity or new work. Making yourself busy does not make a broken heart better.

That’s just avoiding the hurt not healing the hurt. Don’t look for distractions, look for direction. I took a couple of days of alone time to seek God in prayer, in scripture and in sermons. I even went above what I normally do. I had to pump myself full of Jesus because my mind became a battlefield when wounded. I started listening to sermons as I drifted off to dream. Listening to them would take me from restless to restful in minutes. I filled my time at work with praise and worship songs. There comes a time you have to FAITH IT until you MAKE IT. Focus on your faith.

STEP 4. It’s important to realize and accept this person never belonged to you. He or she was not yours to keep.  Remember the best in the relationship and learn from the rest. The longer you hold on the more you will delay receiving God’s best for you life. I see it as me clinching a penny in my fist. As long as I keep my fist clinched tightly around that penny I won’t be able to open up my hands to receive all the quarters being showered on me from above. Let go.

STEP 5. Create a “Feel Good Folder” on your desktop. It’s kind of like my  personal “in case of emergency break glass.” Over the past year I’ve collected screenshots of uplifting, positive words and pictures I’ve received from coworkers, friends, family and even total strangers that have somehow been impacted by me. One morning, I hit a low point and my faith-fuel tank was running on empty. I need a “Faith Lift” as I so fondly call it. I went through and read the contents of my “ Feel Good Folder” for the first time since I began collecting items a year ago. It was exactly the reminder that I needed of who I am in Christ. I lost sight of that when I got lost in a man. So, chances are if you are feeling severe heartbreak from a relationship you may have invested too much of your heart into that person before the proper time. Did you begin to make that person a priority over your friends? Over your family? Over your faith? Over work?

STEP 6. The real solution is in a signature Serenity song. One of my relationship recently ended and my family decided to visit me a couple days later to go to church with me. (See my blog post about “love does.” Love shows up. There’s power in presence. ) After church, my sister was driving my niece and I to lunch. Serenity, not knowing that I was recently broken up with, asked me if she could sing a song for me. Of course, being the awesome aunt that I am absolutely love when Serenity expresses and embraces her creative side. It’s something I pray she never loses. The original isn’t here, but I recorded it a second time because it’s something I want to show her when she is struggling with her first “broken heart.”

The floodgates of my eyes were flung open after listening to her song. Again, God uses my niece to speak to me. To advise me. To counsel me. To protect me. To heal me. To tell me that everything is going to be okay. You are going to be okay too. Heartbreak is inevitable. When you surround yourself with people your heart will take a hit.
We are all imperfect and love imperfectly. We often hurt the ones we are closest too. It doesn’t make it right, it’s just reality. Even Serenity mentions crying, but when all is said and done she will be fine. You will be fine. We will all be fine.

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