I was 20 years old, and my heart was broken. Someone I trusted had betrayed me, and the wound pierced deeply.
Aching and feeling incredibly alone, I curled up on my bed and sobbed—rather loudly apparently, because shortly after I began, I heard a knock on my door.
“Lori?” my dad called. “Are you OK? What’s wrong?”
It took a lot of courage for my dad to knock on the door of a hysterically sobbing woman, even if the woman was his daughter. Dad doesn’t do emotion. That’s Mom’s job.
His love and concern for me, however, was stronger than his desire to avoid messy, slobbery exchanges, so he knocked.
And I answered.
“What’s wrong, Lor?” he asked again, and the tender concern on his face raised the gate on my emotional spillway.
Blubbery and nearly incoherent, I told him my sad tale. When I was finished, he handed me a Kleenex and waited while I blew my nose. Then he said all the right things. He expressed anger on my behalf and shared his wisest counsel. He even offered to call the person and give him a piece of his mind.
Even though nothing about my situation had changed, somehow, sitting on the side of the bed with my dad’s strong arm around me, I knew I was going to be OK.
Unfortunately, my heart’s been broken several times since then, and my father hasn’t always been there to dry my tears.
But my heavenly Father has. Psalm 34:18 reminds me:
“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
Although heartache can make us feel incredibly alone, God’s Word says otherwise. “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted . . .”
IS is a statement of fact, not feeling.
Just like we say, “The sun is in the sky, even though the clouds obscure it” or “Help is on the way, even though we can’t see it,” the truth that God is near when we are sad is a promise we can lay our weeping heads upon.
Even better, God isn’t just a sympathetic listener. He is a mighty warrior with the power to save. "He does not forsake his saints" (Psa. 37:28), and he brings “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness” (Isa. 61:3).
Some of you are brokenhearted today. A wayward child has crushed your hopes and dreams. A distant spouse has wrapped you in a shroud of icy neglect. Grief has sucked the air from your lungs and the joy from your heart.
Don’t try to bear your burden alone. Cry out to Jesus. He doesn’t run from messy, slobbery exchanges, nor does he head the other way when the emotion train roars by. Instead, he knocks on the door of our hearts, wraps his big strong arms around us, and holds us when we cry. Then he goes to work on our behalf, gluing every piece of our shattered hearts back together for our good and his glory.
“You’re going to be OK,” he tells us. “I promise.”
Now it's your turn. How have you seen the Lord's faithfulness during a time of brokenheartedness? Leave a comment below and share your story.