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Do it Broken

I don't think there is a special place we have to go to meet with God, he is always with us. But if there was a sacred place, a corner of the world away from the noise where I could hear God more clearly, this would be it.

Tucked away in the corner of our home, the sun shines in just right and kisses my face with it’s warm amber rays. It's here on this shag carpet I have found surrender and peace. It's here on this old couch I have cried the heavy tears of heartbreak and found healing only a loving heavenly father could bring. It's here in this room I have found myself on my knees pleading for miracles. Here I have danced praises and shouted jubilant victory.

Today, as I once again nestle into this hiding place, I find myself at another impasse. Another moment in time where I am begging for answers. The pressures of life mounting, leaving me feeling so hopeless and alone. And in God's grace and faithfulness he draws near to me in my distress and speaks life into my day.

"God I can't do this week! I'm looking at the days, the schedule, there is just no way. No way I can balance it all, be on time, and somehow manage to keep the inevitable, yet unpredictable 4-year-old tantrums at bay. There is no way for me to keep it all together."

"So, don't." He replies. "Show up broken and messy and allow the world to see that it’s ok to not be perfect. My power manifests itself in your weakness. My glory and grace abound in your lack. Let me shine through you as you run late, show up in sweats with your kid still in pjs. Smile through his embarrassing fits. And as you do, silently give others permission to show up messy too. Emily, I am asking you drop the façade and be willing to show up broken."

"Show up broken? Un-perfect? Not put together? Everything I have strived for and have worked so hard to maintain. Throw all that out, drop the façade, and just be?"

For a moment it seemed like such a foreign concept and then it began to feel like a weight was being lifted off me as God’s freedom breathed strength into my weary heart. This illusion that we have to have it all together, it's a weight that was never mine to bear. From the number on the scale, to our fashion, to our marriage and Stepford kids. We women live and die for a perfect we can never achieve. Driving ourselves into the ground under a load God never asked us to carry. And as we pick up our to do list and labels each morning, we end up feeling as if we may crack under the pressure of this performance. But maybe that's the point? Maybe God wants us to crack.

Maybe God wants us to break under the heavy weight of the laws man has made for itself so we can know just how sweet his freedom tastes. When the waters of life start to boil over and we feel we may just explode if the heat turns up any higher, maybe that’s exactly when we need to press in instead of running away. Maybe we need to crack under this heavy burden of perceived perfection and allow God to mend us back together with all his love and grace in such a beautiful way that only he gets credit. After all, if we never come to our breaking point, we never find our deeper need for him. We never learn that all we strive for is actually found in knowing who he is and basking in who he says we are. His beloved.

What would happen if we took the pressure off ourselves to have it all together? What if we showed up a little less put together and a little more mascara smeared? And I don’t me the fake “not put together” where you spent 20 minutes getting the Pinterest perfect messy bun just right. I mean, let’s really show up broken and raw and allow God’s glory to radiate through, instead of our forced performance and façade, it’s highest agenda to be noticed only for our own achievements and not the work God does in and through our not so put together seasons.

So often when things go askew in my life, I scramble all the harder to hold the pieces together with bobby pins and duct tape. All the while pleading with God to make it better. To give me some magic eraser to wipe it all away so I can start fresh and do better next time. But with this thought he reminds me that it’s his blood that covers it all, the messy, yucky and failed parts of my life. The not so nice mama moments. The running behind and the forgotten food in the back of the fridge. The times of heart ache and poor choices. The words I wish I could take back and the days I wanted to be on time. All these, with one word, are wiped clean with his grace and remembered no more. So, you see, broken is exactly the place to be. Broken is where he picks us up and washes us clean. Not when we come to him with all we have accomplished or can do, but in our mess. This is where his best work is done

So, friends, let’s breathe in freedom. Let's drop the act. Let's do this life broken so God's glory can shine through all our imperfect and not good enough. His grace is enough to cover it all and carry us home. Let's show up broken.

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