About the Author

Ann Voskamp is a farmer's wife, the home-educating mama to a half-dozen exuberant kids, and author of One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are, a New York Times 60 week bestseller. Named by Christianity Today as one of 50 women most shaping culture and the...

Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. What’s been breaking my heart a bit has been the loss of a man whom God used greatly in my life even though he didn’t know me. His name is David, and I hurt even though I know he is with the Lord.

    I might wake to God’s healing love by remembering who He is, by remembering His love-grace, and by letting him take my broken heart and use it as He wills.

    “You came for me, left the ninety-nine. Told the devil, NO this one is MINE!”
    “You came after me, Jesus!”

  2. This is a timely reminder for me Ann. My heart is breaking over my first baby -miscarried seven months ago. The baby that had I born would be in my arms just now. My friends have just had their babies and have arms and homes full of newborns. My baby is with Jesus and I’m trying to take the hurt & heartache to the Lord …. but sometimes I am so angry, sometimes the hurt is so great that I push God away. My heart feels too broken to be fixed sometimes. I know in my head that isn’t true. My heart sometimes feels something different. Your message today spoke into the broken places today. “It’s okay. Even when a heart’s broken”… she gently touches it’s raw edge, “His love’s still around me everywhere. And maybe the love get’s in easier here where it’s tore?” Bless your baby. Her words blessed my broken heart today. Please cuddle her for me. Dear Ann, I give thanks that you say so many of the same things that my heart feels but I can’t seem to find the right words. Love in the Lord, Stephanie xo

    • Stephanie,
      I have been where you are at. I have missed my no longer there child while watching others hold their new babies. You are not alone.
      Please know that I will be praying for you. For your brokenness and your anger. For your healing. And for much love to always be apparent in your life.
      A~

    • Stephanie, I too know the ache of losing my first baby, the ache of empty arms, a heart filled with pain. My heart aches for you today. I will pray.

    • I too know that empty feeling.. more empty and broken then you were aware that existed.. and I know that JEsus can strengthen you and love you and make you whole again.. like an athlete’s muscle.. the heart must be flexed and micro tears are torn… and the healing begins, and it is stronger than ever… Lifting you up.. Loving you so that you may heal.. but do not rush.. take this time with the Lord!

    • You are not alone. Listen to the women who have written, but greater… oh, so much greater than that, listen to His truth. We are promised His presence no matter what. No matter what. Jesus will never leave or forsake you, and He is close to the brokenhearted. It is not the strength of our feeble grip that holds His, but His strong loving hand which holds us. I think of our children heaven holds, the praises they sing, the dances they dance for His glory ~

    • Dearest Stephanie…
      As I sit hear with tears streaming, I, too, am grieveing the loss of my baby that happened on beautiful Palm Sunday morning….You are not alone. Oh how this hurts, and the pain is so raw. But also, how lucky we are to believe in a God that grieves with us and who is gently receiving our children… May you be blessed, and filled with comfort. *And Ann, thank you from the bottom of my heart…
      Peace..

    • Stephanie,
      I, too, grieved the loss of my first (and second) babies through miscarriage. I’m standing on the other side of it believing God will heal you as He did me, and trusting He will carry you all the way.
      Amy

    • I lost one of my twin sons many years ago and I do know this….sometimes when our hearts break, they break open to allow more in. Know He loves you and has your child safe in His loving arms. God bless and keep you and comfort you now and always…until once again you see your child.

    • Stephanie-
      I, too, have cried tears of sadness and have experienced the gut wrenching grief over the loss of a baby to miscarriage. It is such an empty feeling and such an incredible loss. One of the things that got me through that difficult time in my life was knowing that Jesus was holding my little baby and keeping him or her safe until I could meet my baby face to face in heaven someday. My baby is safe in the arms of Jesus. Hold on to the thought of having an eternity to share with your baby – these years on this earth and few and fleeting. I will pray for you in this time and ask God to bless you in a special way. Hugs to you, Jennifer

    • i get this stephanie~ the hurt and anger and questioning. the ache for that tiny one you loved so intensely without ever meeting. yes, i get it. and i hope you find comfort knowing you’re not alone. from the others who commented as well, i see we are walking a well worn path.. and in the company of some amazing grace filled souls. with love because of Him, amber

    • I have been there as well, I miscarried our almost 13 week old unborn baby 3 weeks ago. I know that I will be able to spend eternity with my baby and that who better than our Father in Heaven that created my baby to raise him / her. But, I’m still sad that I won’t be able to know my baby in this life, I’m still sad that I won’t know the feel of that baby in my arms and I’m sad that I will miss his / her baby smell that I will never know. I’m sad that I had to tell my little girl that the baby is in Heaven, but I also know that God has something awesome planned for all of us with angels in heaven. May God bless you and keep you, may He place His strong and Almighty arms around you. May He heal the anger and the sore. May He bless your womb with another miracle. God’s richest blessings to you and everyone who has lost a baby.

    • My first baby should be a newborn right now, too, but I had a miscarriage in the fall and it sure seems like everyone I know has a baby or is pregnant. I don’t understand – I just wanted to keep him and he’s gone. And my husband is in this clueless ptsd-induced stupor, saying “we can’t afford a baby,” though we have great insurance and can live in comfortable frugality on his income if I stayed home. I just want to cry and cry for the baby who is gone and every month comes the glaring reminder, the dashed hopes for another baby, and I carry this deep sorrow of wishing that husband could remember being the man who wanted to have a family with me.

      We are held together in this brokenness, Stephanie, not left alone. I keep telling myself this – why be afraid of broken things? or of being a broken thing? Somehow I’m sure I will start to really believe it soon.

      let these bones that you have broken rejoice (ps. 51:8)
      a bruised reed he will not break (is 42:3)

    • Dear Stephanie,
      I wish I could fix you a picnic lunch and walk with you to your favorite spot to pray. First we’d pray for Jesus to join us, then I’d listen and cry with you, and if you’d like to hear, share our journey through 6 miscarriages to an adoption of a beautiful, precious daughter. I’d share how many times I failed this perfect daughter being too impatient, too rushed, too afraid of failing her, my husband and worst our Lord. And how we just spent a glorious 2 weeks celebrating her being home, visiting friends & family, hiking favorite mountains, and rocking on an old peaceful porch and just soaked each other up before she left for her new adventure.
      Most of all I’d share how totally healed all the hurts in life are when we allow God to light up our hearts like radiant little Shalom. He is not afraid to crawl into our darkest places and hold us, even we hurting so much we can’t see or feel Him
      Today I’ll be praying for you and all the women who walk this heartbreaking, lonely path of miscarriage… and pray for you to hold the baby of God’s blessing in His perfect timing.
      love in Christ Jesus,

  3. This is quite possibly the coolest thing I’ve ever read. You’re so blessed to be Shalom’s mum, if this is the kind of person she is!

    This made my day & was perfectly timed. Thank you. 🙂

  4. What a breathtaking gift your children are, and how perfectly faith-consumed your daughter replies and sings and moves…this was beauty in a morning. Thank you for sharing.

    …I wasn’t particularly going to answer the question, but my heart breaks a bit because I am crippled in fear and doubt. Not in Who He is, but in who i am, and how to gird myself against the forces of this world in a tangible way. I know the Truths. I am His. Bought with a blood that isn’t mine – that now never has to be. But my heart breaks because I want to give Him faith that moves mountains, and most days all He gets is a feeble, apologetic stuttering of timidity and wonder.
    But God. He is not timid. He is a patient Warrior. Ever-ready to bring me to Him.

    Sometimes the flesh is so susceptible and my knees so wobbly that I get distracted. I completely forget that no matter how weak my legs, I’m standing on solid Rock. I will never be swept away into the rolling sea; I will never be hurled headlong. For He Holds my hand.

  5. My heart breaks for our brothers and sisters in the south – lives ripped away yesterday by power from the sky – houses shredded, towns destroyed, torn hearts remain, torn and broken. Surely Jesus stands there – open armed, trying to welcome all who would but receive…….oh come Lord Jesus into the devastation of our lives, tornado or none, we are desperate for you!

  6. Why does this speak to me so well…my heart is torn…a challenging, struggle of a 14 yr marriage…consisting of a believer and a non-believer, but most importantly a family. Theres many reasons my heart is torn, where does one start and where does one draw the line. When living in Eucharisteo, wanting to fully live, you said it “its the in between that drives us mad”.
    Thank you for letting me share what breaks my heart a bit, but mostly Thank you for One Thousand Gifts!

    • Junebug- I understand your struggle. My heart breaks there too over many years of struggle and I can hardly contain my tears as I write this. I love the “maybe it gets in better where it’s torn”- that’s a statement that is as profound as anything i’ve ever read. All of us that are reading this post this morning will take that sentiment away and remember it the rest of our lives! Thanks for letting me share. I get tired of holding it all in.

      • Thank you Beth, sometimes I feel so alone, oh who am I kidding, its a constant feeling of alone. For some time it was easy to mask, not to mention you accept and move on, but for some reason theres more to the realization of it now, could it be that are children are getting older, and i will have to explain to them. Or is that I see others deeply in love with each other and God and we don’t share this, in fact it holds me back from who I truly want to be, truthful to myself, my children & others. I keep fighting for strength, I just don’t think I have much more, I don’t want to throw the towel in so to speak, and I almost feel very selfish at times, and i know there are so many other challenges out there, it can be so confusing, I don’t want to just settle for what it is. I could go on, and on, but see I can’t talk with him, it is what it is, like it or leave it. Will I be a failure if i leave it??????

        • You are not alone. either. It’s been 24 years this week. It is so much harder now that the chidlren are older and see it so for themselves. You are called to live out your commitment. I stongly reommend Gary Thomas’s book. The subtitle says “what if marriage is designed to make us not happy, but holy. ” Praying for you today. God will be your strength and your shield. Trust Him and Him alone!

          • Thank you for the recommendation of the book, I will have to look into it. Wow 24 yrs…and its harder as the kids get older…why do we put ourselves and our loved ones through it…where do you find happiness in your relationship, its such a roller coaster of a ride and so often I think I really want to get off.

    • 13 years for me and mine. It is hard, so hard.
      Eucharisteo precedes the miracle, don’t forget (and not according to OUR timetable).

      Gary Thomas’ book, Sacred Marriage, is a valuable resource. Do get it.

      I’m praying for our marriages tonight.
      What God has knit together, let no man put asunder…

      • Thank you for the prayer…I do tell myself time after time, wait for the miracle it all comes together in Gods time.

        • Gals- my heart goes out to each of you who can relate to this struggle. I know there are many other commenters here who can relate to a broken heart in regards to different circumstances. Let’s pray for each other. As I read the other comments in our little section, I realize the universal thoughts we are having about where our broken hearts reside. I feel not so alone anymore- thanks gals. God has a time, God has a way. That may look different for each one of us. Seek Him.

  7. My heart breaks with the joy and pain of parenting. This path, that we wouldn’t give up for anything, costs us everything as we try to allow Him to shepherd these hearts through us. There are those days when He allows us to see the glorious fruit He is bringing forth in their hearts, but there are also those days when the will bows its back and the defiance enters their eyes and we have to just cry out to Him. “You are Faithful! You are Sufficient!” But it is hard to see the Provision through the tears. And we think there must be a time when we run out of tears, when our hearts just dry out. But they don’t. He supplies an endless Source of Love and tenderness. And we wake to do it again tomorrow. And we pray and plead and hold fiercely to His Hand.

    • amen. from one who hasn’t run out of tears yet. one who is praying and pleading and holding fiercely. and praying that He won’t let go of my children. ever.

  8. My heart breaks today because my mama who really does love me through her brokenness, it never quite seems like it. I am often the mama in our relationship. She is now going to be moving away, and I am sad, but need to remember I am mourning something that is not really there . . . still, it hurts. I guess I am mourning the mama that never was, even though she is ‘here’. Make sense?

    Anyway, that is what my heart is breaking over today. Thanks for a safe place to share it. Off to the Father who binds up the broken-hearted and even when my mother and father forsake, He shall take care of me.

    Relentlessly Pursuing,

    Michelle

  9. “. . .maybe love gets in easier where it’s tore.”
    Oh Ann,
    Everything I read , that He give you to say, resonates deep.
    There are places in my heart that are tore. I pray that I open my arms and give Him the torn places. Surely, I feel His Presence the deepest when I am torn somewhere in my heart and praying from that torn place.
    Thank you for this.
    I have a desire to run upstairs and cut out hearts for my sons and I before we begin our school day.
    Like you, I pray that I can find the scissors.
    Love you Ann.

  10. Broken heart of one lost son, but joy comes in the morning! So comforting to know that we can leave him in the arms of Jesus all day and receive His peace! Rejoicing at the six who serve their Master with all their hearts!
    So blessed with your lovely children! And especially honored to be in your home last week – giving them real hugs from a Mama who loves Jesus with her whole heart!
    Thanks for One Thousand Gifts, dear Ann! Have now sold 239!!!!!! How blessed people are as you share your life with them! 🙂

  11. My heart’s breaking for my daughter who is suffering with social anxiety and many other fears. I feel her pain. Taking comfort in God’s love.

  12. My heart is breaking for a small group of torn hearts – 8 precious women struggling to let the love of Christ into their broken and torn places. These are courageous women who were never loved securely by their moms and dads – leaving a raw and empty wound that all of life filters through with messages of insignificance and unworthiness. They are disparately seeking the only source of hope in the one whose body was torn for them.
    Lady of Hope

  13. Wow, a whole new dimension to the spelling of receive, “You can’t ever get receive right if the ‘I’ goes first. We always must let go of the ‘I’ if we are to receive anything at all.” Beautifully spelled out for us, Ann, thank you.

  14. Four losses in four months….relationships that still exist on this earth, but oh, how they need a touch of grace from heaven….wounds from so long ago that are surfacing. Only His presence, only His touch and the help from my dear counselor, help me begin the sorting process. As always, your words move and help to heal 🙂

  15. I am broken-hearted over the completion of our 5th miscarriage a few days ago. As I walk around with the most empty feeling where a growing baby should have stayed….5 times I have had to pick back up, resume life as normal, experience the pain but with no joy on the other side.

    It’s been refreshing hearing the words lately, that it’s “ok” to be broken-hearted. To grieve, to hurt, and to cry.

    And maybe, just maybe there will be a light around the corner.

    Thank you for this beautiful post.

    • Christy,
      I’m so sorry for the loss you are going through, it’s so painful in so many ways. I’m going through miscarriage #6 right now. Praying that you will experience peace and comfort as you grieve.

    • We’ve been married for 20 yrs. Tried for the first 14 years. Yes, I write 14. Many heart breaks, too many to count. We have two boys (biologically ours, miraculous carried by me): 6 year old and an 11 month-old.
      I have been in your shoes and I am so sorry Christy. I am so sorry.
      I am praying for you.

  16. My daughter is sick, we can’t figure out why. I can do nothing to change the situation. As a mom I feel completely helpless. My heart is breaking. I love the idea that maybe the love can get in better when the heart is torn. I have felt God’s love in a way that I have never felt before. But…I still wish my beautiful girl was healthy.

  17. My dear friend has lung cancer. Stage 4. She is 34. She has 5 children. Oldest 11. Youngest 9 months. And I wonder if it has all come down to those numbers.

    And I try to remember, He did not have to give her to us at all. But I am a spoiled child and I want to scream out it is not fair.

    I want him to make a miracle, forgetting the miracles he has given everyday.

    I want to remember that in all things we works for good… in him all things hold together…I want to remember to trust him with all things.

    Thank you for letting me share.

    • Bethany,

      My heart breaks for your friend, and her family & dear ones. I am so close to those numbers, and yet our lives are so different in this moment. Thank you for sharing. I will keep your friend in my prayers–that the Lord would be merciful. Oh, Lord–show mercy, we pray.

      • Thank you for praying with me Emily! Your prayer has encouraged me.

        The Lord is merciful and my friend is showing signs of improvement.

        God bless you!

  18. Once again Ann, you speak volumes with few words! You seem always to have the words that need to be said, need to be heard, at that precise moment. You are truly a blessing to all of us whose lives you touch, however fleeting!! *hugs*
    My heart has been breaking, for the last couple of years, over the emptiness of doing mother/parenthood alone. My Lord blessed me almost three years ago with a precious bundle of joy, whose father was a friendly source of comfort to me for almost 5 years and yet has chosen to remove himself ‘from the picture’ to ‘save his marriage’ (a state he, regrettably, forgot to inform me of until I told him of our pregnancy). My heart is breaking over my daughters’ loss of her father, regardless that she has fantastic father-figures in her grandfather and great-grandfather, both of whom we live with. My heart is breaking over ‘having to’ go through this alone – not having that ‘special someone’ to help ‘carry the load’. My heart longs to be united with my husband and my children’s Daddy – whomever that may be, in accordance to God’s will.
    And yet, I wait. Not ‘in relationship’ since that fateful 9/11, yet not really waiting until the last few years. And still I hope, and pray. And wait. While my heart is broken, I wait. Letting God mend my heart, piece by piece – until he finally completes it with our ‘meeting’.
    God can fill all those hope and dreams and gaps, but it was Him that said “it is not good for man to be alone”. He gave me this desire, this in-built desire for his chosen partner for me. And while my heart breaks in the waiting, watching close friends and family find love, enjoy marriage and partnership with their man, and add to their families further, I hope, and I trust. And I know that God is faithful – that he will mend that brokenness if we just keep firm in our faith and belief in him.
    God bless you Ann. And God bless your words. You have filled me with peace today, and encouraged me in my walk more than you will ever know! xo

    • My heart is pounding as I read your note. I am on the other side. My heart is torn because of my husband’s affair. I rejoice because he has come back to live with me, yet the hurt is sometimes unbearable. I am reading Ann’s book to help me heal, to help me be grateful again, to help me forgive the other woman. I have hated the other woman, yet known it is wrong to have that hate. You have shown me the other side and that will make it easier for me to pray for her. It hurts that you put “save his marriage” in quotes as if you are mocking that statement. Maybe that is how she feels, too. I have been given the gift of a saved marriage. God is healing us.

  19. “Will she remember that we can’t give the love to others, until we know the love we’ve been given?

    That it’s only when we know we have extravagantly received grace that we can extravagantly reach out in grace. Knowing His love-grace everywhere, is the only love-grace we can give.”

    Pierced straight through my heart, in the midst of family choices long ago that are strangling relationships right now…………….

    So appreciate you Ann. 🙂
    karen

  20. The more my heart breaks the stronger it gets. Every time a fellow Christian donates to our christian charity I feel love. I feel love for that person and Christ. Please check out this wonderful site (bibleleague.ca) if you’re interested.

  21. I thank God for this broken heart in me. My pain is a portal to the Something More of God’s holy plan for me and my family. I ask God to take up residence in the deep, dark broken places. Just his presence is enough to warm me, melt those sharp edges, and sculpt me into his intention for who I should be. My emptiness is his possibility. Praise to the Creator, who makes all things (even our broken hearts) new.

  22. How very dear is this! Lovely Ann, even in the chaos of glue sticks sticking themselves to invisible places, these face-holding, heart-wearing gifts hold you present in the year of “Here.” Every moment a treasure. Every breath grace.

    In answer to your questions, beauty from brokenness is a recurring theme in my life — like the anchoring strain in a symphony, giving depth and resonance to every airy joy. Most recent thoughts here: http://jeannedamoff.wordpress.com/2011/04/27/hidden-sorrow/

    Much love to you.
    Jeanne

  23. My Dad just passed away 4/14/11 and what an awesome and wonderful man of God he was. The evening before he passed we talked about your post of your husband planting the red clover seeds and it cold outside. I’m so glad I found your sight, oh how it soothes my soul. God is so awesome. My Dad is with the Lord today. I have joy through pain and tremendous peace from our amazing Lord & Savior.

  24. My heart is breaking over a huge ado I had last night with a neighbor. A simple request turned into a huge mess, when I was doing everything I could to prevent the mess. I hate it, hate it that it all went down the way it did. I want to try to smooth things over, but I know that if I start talking, it’ll all blow up again.

  25. How could you know that just this week I put my broken heart right out in the open again? That even if it hurts, I gave myself to love as He loves. God bless you!

  26. what a beautiful and timely post… Hearts break all around, this whole world is broken and one only has to look out of the window to see the shattering. My heart breaks for those hit by tornados last night, for those across the oceans who suffer under oppressive governments, for children without mothers, for mothers without children… for the messes everywhere. Christ breaks my heart and fixes me up a little more each day. He IS the great healer and maybe I need to tape a heart to my chest so I never forget his love, his unbelievable love and care for all of this brokenness . Praying for all who are broken hearted and in need of the healers touch…

  27. Your sweet Shalom is beautiful, inside and out. And so wise for her years. You’re doing such a wonderful job, mama.

    My heart is a bit broken right now because of a job my heart isn’t in, and wondering if God has more, or if I’m meant to plod away here to help provide for my family. Or maybe He just wants to mold my heart. As for waking to His love? I think I need to remember His great plans for me, that He has won the victory for me, that despite my confusion and lack of vision, He sees the path.

  28. Once again tears well and trhroat lump forms as I read about a child’s heart really getting it. Thanks for sharing life, hope and yes, Shalom. I am enouraged and blessed by it.

  29. Thank you for sharing your precious stories with us. I love how God uses children to show us His truth.

    My heart is a bit broken right now from choices that I made in the past that were wrong and that I hold in the secret place. I fear losing all that is precious to me should it ever find its way out. I rise to His love by reminding me that His grace is sufficient. It doesn’t mean that what I did was right, but it does mean that I am forgiven. His grace is new every morning…it is my hope. Thank You for hope, Father.

    Thank you, Ann, for spurring me on in faith.

  30. It’s amazing how God brings us these reminders just when we need them most. My heart is broken in so many pieces I’m having trouble believing it can ever be healed and have been seriously contemplating suicide. I still believe He is there but I just can’t see any light anymore. But to hear the words ‘maybe the love gets in easier where it is torn’…immediately brought tears to my eyes. I need to let God surround all the broken pieces of my heart and fill in any pieces that may be missing. Thank you for sharing this. I needed this reminder more than I could ever explain.

    • i know what it feels like to think you are so broken you may never be healed. but i stand on the other side declaring this to be a lie, an illusion. last year i asked jesus to lead me where i needed to go to finish my healing that i had been working on for so long it seemed. he does answer and led me to where i needed to be. he put the best people in my path and gave me the courage and grace to go after what i needed. i pray for you that you will search out healing in every place you can find, starting first with asking, begging for Jesus’ help and guidance. i pray that if you continue to think about suicide you will believe that you deserve better and will get the help you need. no matter how broken we feel, in reality we are actually whole.
      this is an excerpt from Jesus talking to my main character from the manuscript of my first novel.
      “Your circumstances could be full of pain and suffering, but that does not affect your wholeness. Look at me: I went through terrible pain and suffering, but I was always who I AM. My body may have been broken on the cross, but my soul was never broken. When I was challenged, criticized, cast away, condemned, I never let that define who I AM. Circumstances shape your character, but they do
      not shape your soul. Your soul will always reflect your true nature no matter how obscured it becomes.
      This world lies. It would have you believe that you are broken and worthless. Don’t believe its lies. You are whole as I am whole. Live in this belief. By all means stop the outward conditions of sin that keep you from me, the pride and the sloth and the envy or whatever else you want to change, but know that on the inside we are more alike than different. You are part of me, part of the body of Christ. We are as similar as the DNA that lives in every cell of your body, be it foot or brain or heart.
      Accept this wholeness, accept yourself as good enough and let it change your life.”

      I will be praying for you, Liz.

    • The physical pain that I felt when I found a letter saying my spouse was leaving/had left was unlike any pain I have ever experienced. I did not think I could live with the pain. But, Light and Love have shone into that dark place and brought me more joy than I ever could have known possible. Hold on girl — He loves you more than you can ever, ever imagine. Just keep looking at the Light, not the pain or the problem. Faith holds on when our emotions want to let go. Those of us who read your story are praying for you, Liz.

    • Liz,
      My heart breaks reading your struggles. I can so relate to that feeling. After miscarrying my second child, I realized how little control we have and spun into this constant state of anxiety. But I still wanted control. I tried to fix it on my own, but couldn’t. The ache of that became unbearable and the idea of just walking out on life became appealing. When I started to actually think of how I could commit suicide, I knew that if I didn’t give it all to God, I wouldn’t survive. So, that is my prayer for you. That you will give all the hurt, all the brokeness, all the despair to God. For me, that looked like stopping when the anxiety would come on, closing my eyes in prayer, and visualizing me handing Him those burdens. The burdens usually looked like a big box. I would make myself worship Him even when I didn’t feel like it. I would make myself aknowledge His goodness and His promises even when I felt like I had been lied to. I eventually was able to make myself read His word even though it would be years before I would see any life in it. The book The Shack really helped me during this time. I pray that you will find comfort and healing in the only true Comforter. Ann’s book, 1000 gifts, has helped to bring me through the last bit of healing, of trusting. So, whether it’s through prayer or a book or a friend or a song or His word, I pray that you will turn to Him in some way so that you can allow Him to begin the process of healing you. It is so worth it. Today, I trust my God and love my God and have depth with my God unlike I ever have in my walk with Him. I know you will have an amazing story of His miracles too.

  31. I thought right of the woman that I was so graced to meet…divinely…truly amazing story. A Hungarian woman living here in Florida. A believer. These two together are exceedingly rare. God connected us as we are moving to her homeland, long-term, love on this broken-hearted place.

    Her story was amazing in its final triumph but the broken-heartedness repeated so much in her life could be every Hungarian woman’s story…and then when her life fully became His she described it as possibly pain like a heart attack, and she believed it was like it was being ripped open so His Spirit could pour in…she’s been in absolute love with Jesus ever since.

    It is such a mirror of sweet Shalom’s amazing heart story…so beautiful! Bless you all always, Abby:)

  32. I’m broken over my sin.

    Sin that He mercifully shows me each day.

    Self-righteousness, criticalness, pride, self-pity, bitterness, unforgiveness and on and on.

    I have asked for this breaking.

    Over and over I’ve asked for it. And oh how He has been so faithful to grant me my petition.

    I am a woman in love … broken straight through.

  33. my heart is broken at this moment with loneliness. with depression that i know He is using to peal away the pride of my self control, so i sit in it. i sit with it. knowing that this season will pass as Jesus continues to wrestle with me…

    • He just loves you …it is we who wrestle with ourselves….trying to “control” our own lives . Praying for you sister.

    • Sheli,

      May our Lord Jesus minister mightily to you right where you are. There is a quote from Betsie ten Boom, sister of Corrie, who said that there is no pit so deep that Christ is not deeper still.

      His wing is opened to you, sister. May you find your way beneath it. He means to love and comfort you in ways no other person can. He understands loneliness. So do I.

      I thank God that He is with you.

  34. Oh Ann, such a beautiful post. So much truth. What an amazing God we have who takes our broken places, shines His tender love, and heals us from the inside out.

    Praying for blessings for you and your precious family,
    Lisa

  35. This is a beautiful reminder of how great God’s love for us is. Makes me think of the new song “Blessings” by Laura Story. Its just beautiful and speaks of this same thing. And I am even more blessed, and brought to tears by all your wonderful comments, and love, being poured out on eachother, the support and prayers given. Jesus is here, right here on this comment board. He is in our words and our lives and even though we don’t know eacho ther at all, he is using us all to bless the other. My heart is warmed by this love and compassion in our cruel, cold world. I am so glad I clicked on the link to read this today. Thank you.

  36. Seems so trite, but this morning we had to give away our cat. Our kids have allergies to her. It broke my heart. The kids all cried but have already bounced back. Oh to be young! Thank God he cares about losing companions and all our daily cares!

  37. This is a timely word for me. My heart is breaking as I go through miscarriage #6. We weren’t trying to get pregnant again…we are pursuing adoption and I wasn’t expecting this to happen at all. I thought I was done with that part of my life. I thought that if I ever did get pregnant again, then surely things would work out well. I didn’t think I could survive this again. But, here I am, with God sustaining me, surrounding me, binding up my wounds, holding me close and loving me. Like your daughter, it’s my desire to praise Him through the pain and the brokenness. May He continue to put a song in my heart.

    • {I am praying for you right now, beautiful Amanda… May the God of all comfort, wrap His arms around you, draw you near… That song of faith you are singing? It’s exquisite. Much love, friend…}

  38. What’s breaking my heart? Life is such a struggle right now. My health… there is something wrong, I know it in the deepest parts of my being that how I am feeling isn’t a result of just being a mom and busy all the time. Unfortunately, I can’t afford the tests for them to figure it out. My vocation … I am currently working in a church for way too few hours and way too little pay. I love what I do, but I can’t keep going and they are also looking at how to reorganize their staff .. where is God calling me to in this next season of my life.

    But I know that I am surrounded by God’s love. I see it in the faces of my husband and 3 children every day — if I remember to look. They remain healthy and loving and full of joy. I just need to remember to look for God each and every day. He is there! I just have to take the time to notice and sit in his presence.

    Thank you Ann for your encouraging words!

  39. I have never written like this before, but the blogs from the last couple of days have really undone me and begun to heal my heart. I feel like I’d like to cut myself out a heart today and wear it so I could tell people how God is healing my broken heart. I wonder what my students would think!
    My divorce came through a few weeks ago, I divorce I had not wanted in any way. On the day the official notice came I felt my heart would never be whole again. It was on that very day that God had the postman deliver to my door the book One Thousand Gifts. It was just the thing I needed. God has used that book mightily in my life the last few weeks as I have gone into almost retreat mode. I just didn’t want to talk to anyone about my divorce – I didn’t tell anyone except my children (they are adults and not living at home) that it had come through. So I sat in my house except when I had to go out (so happy that it all coincided with school holidays) and felt like my heart was broken. And day by day I read a little of the book and God started to heal me, bring me so much closer to him. Then a couple of days ago the blog about hurting women and I realised I had to start trusting some friends because I really needed them and last night a friend dropped by very unexpectedly and she said ‘I think you’ve been going through a hard time – how are you’. Her hug was like a hug direct from God. So this morning the heart idea from Shalom was just right for me.
    I have so vry much enjoyed reading all about this community on the computer. Thankyou everyone.

    • Vicki-
      My heart goes out to you & you will be in my prayers. My husband & I are separated right now, I have been praying for healing & restoration of our marriage for almost a year. I will be praying the same for you, as even though your divorce has gone through, God can still bring restoration & remarriage! So hang in there & start praying for God to touch your husband’s heart, turning it to Him & back to you! I say “husband”, because to God he still sees you two as married & as “one-flesh”. He “hates divorce!” ~Malachi 2:15. I posted this below, but go to http://www.rejoiceministries.org. It’s a very encouraging marriage ministry of a woman who divorced her husband, yet God healed their marriage & brought them back together! They were re-married for just over 23 years before he passed away last December. So I hope that brings you some encouragement! God bless!

    • Vicki-I know that this is three days late, but I just wanted to let you know that I am praying for you. That he heals, and he will not smolder that faintly burning wick of your heart. He is always, ALWAYS faithful. Sin bites, but Christ has won the victory. Praying in faith that he can take your earthly sorrow, and transform it in a way that you cannot predict or direct. May the peace of Christ be with you.

  40. My heart breaks for all the dear people in the tragic storm/tornado destruction in AL., MS. GA, TN etc. Especially in Tuscaloosa. How we all must grief and pray for the recovery and healing. For God’s glory to be evident in everything. How my heart aches for their loss.
    Agree with what Amanda (#46) said.
    Thankful for God’s grace in the daily storms. What ever your battle is today, stop and give it to God for His re-making. Remember the Blood from His wounds made us forgiven and acceptable in God’s eyes. We wear the robes of righteousness from the
    SON. ~Leila

    • My home is just outside of Tuscaloosa. The morning of the 27th we had an EF-3 tornado come through our little neighborhood and town of Coaling, completely destroying several homes and damaging many others. It passed about 100 yards from my back door. We are daily visually reminded by a debris littered pasture of the tragedy that is all around us in Alabama. The morning tornado was 12 hours before the monstrous one that ripped through the heart of my hometown of Tuscaloosa. Three different places that I have lived in the past are either completely gone or heavily damaged. Thousands upon thousands are displaced and my heart breaks with the overwhelming numbing grief of so many around me.
      God is merciful and I am rejoicing in the safety of so many I know — the stories of survival are miraculous and ongoing. And yet it is with daily tears that I struggle to handle the emotional challenges of what is all around. This morning God reminded me of Psalm 126:6: “He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.”
      As many of us here in Alabama go out into our wounded and broken community to minister, it is with weeping, but we carry seed to sow that will return with joy and increase. We serve a great God.
      I am thankful for this post of Ann’s and will certainly be using Shalom’s words about broken hearts to help comfort and minister to my children (6 and 3) who are also wrestling with the realities of living in world with things such as tornadoes.

  41. Ann – your daughter’s face all light and translucent. Her purity mixed with your desire to teach love, be love, is so beautiful here. Thank you.

    I am reminded of Oscar Wilde’s poem, The Ballad of Reading Gaol:

    Ah! Happy those whose hearts can break
    And peace of pardon win!
    How else may man make straight his plan
    And cleanse his soul from Sin?
    How else but through a broken heart
    May Lord Christ enter in?

  42. There is nothing like a child’s understanding of our Almighty Father! Thank you for sharing this and please hug your sweet daughter for all of us and tell her that she is a good child and is growing up to be a good woman that will do mighty works for His Kingdom. Thank you so much Ann for being obedient to Him and committing to this ministry He has given you. I pray for all of the broken hearts posted here and hope that each one allows His Love to enter in.
    Love to all,
    Crystal

  43. I truly, madly, deeply fell in love -for the first time- and my heart was broken when I realized I had been building castles in the air… Unrequitted love – is there healing for this, too?

    I know it is, and I know this is just a lesson from my wise, almighty, loving Father… yet, sometimes it feels like I’ll never be well again…

    • Darling one……….He uses time as a balm. Be kind to yourself and use your own timeline, no one elses. Nothing is wasted in our Lords economy – He will bring beauty from ashes.

  44. We just found out yesterday at the Mayo Clinic that my active husband needs a quadruple bypass and my heart is once again torn. We too lost a premature baby after 3 weeks and I know about pain and depression. Yet it was her death that led me to questions that saved me in Christ 11 years after her birth. I know God will strengthen me in this situation, but I am numb for the pain Dan will go through. I just need prayer that God will see us through this in an amazing way, and that He might get all the glory. Is it coincidence that my small group is reading Ann’s book, One Thousand Gifts, and now I must submit to this hard Eucharisteo? No, but I pray some of you will pray for him on May 6th. I pray I have the energy to blog about God’s provision during this time. Thank you and may God bless each of your days.
    Laurie

      • Oh thank you Ann. I can’t believe you would do this for us. May God continue to bless your beautiful heart which shares and encourages us all. Today the Mayo called to reschedule for May 9th. If you don’t get this I know God will honor your prayers and carry them forward 3 days. Again, thank you, through my tears. I am deeply touched.

  45. My heart is breaking because I took my soon to be 76 year old mother to the dr. today and the news wasn’t exactly encouraging. She was first diagnosed with pneumonia but now x-ray results are showing a definate need for a CT scan as she has “spots” and significant changes in her lung structure. I don’t want to jump to conclusions but I can’t help but think of the “c” word–cancer. If this is to be the beginning of the end of her earthly time, I must accept God’s will and I know that she will be supremely happy to be reunited with her two sons that have predeceased her. However, I can’t help but to be sad b/c she has become my best friend. I’ve lost so many loved ones and I’m scared I will have to let her go home. I’m afraid to be so alone in this crazy world w/out my truest friend–they are so hard to find.
    As for everyone else who has written, I’m sorry for your pain and have prayed for the Lord to sustain and heal all your wounds.

  46. My heart is breaking because I took my soon to be 76 year old mother to the dr. today and the news wasn’t exactly encouraging. She was first diagnosed with pneumonia but now x-ray results are showing a definate need for a CT scan as she has “spots” and significant changes in her lung structure. I don’t want to jump to conclusions but I can’t help but think of the “c” word–cancer. If this is to be the beginning of the end of her earthly time, I must accept God’s will and I know that she will be supremely happy to be reunited with her two sons that have predeceased her. However, I can’t help but to be sad b/c she has become my best friend. I’ve lost so many loved ones and I’m scared I will have to let her go home. I’m afraid to be so alone in this crazy world w/out my truest friend–they are so hard to find.
    As for everyone else who has written, I’m sorry for your pain and have prayed for the Lord to sustain and heal all your wounds.

    • my mom – 75 next week – has been very sick and in the hospital with an undiagnosed illness. my dad needs care 24/7. it.is.so.tough. to watch my parents age. we’ve watched strokes, cancer, embolisms, arthritis, chip away at our once so active loved ones, and it is unsettling. i understand your feelings. i’m trying, despite the fatigue of being a caregiver, to remember the gifts god has given me in my parents. i prayed for your mother just now. and for you.

  47. What an angel. She looks incredibly like you. You have done an amazing job of showing, sharing, and teaching your children the love of the Lord and faith. What a precious moment you both shared. Thank you for sharing it with us and reminding us the power of children’s words for adults.

  48. I have two boys who are growing older but my heart breaks over four babies in heaven that I never got to meet. Some of them, I heard their heart beat, saw their beautifully formed bodies but God decided they best be with him. My heart breaks as I watch my two sisters and sister-in-law have babies within 6 weeks and our family experiences a baby boom yet my arms are baby empty. All the tests and procedures have left me struggling with anxiety and depression for the last few years and now I too swallow calm and I wonder if it ever gets easier. Daily I fight to live in the now and I too was blessed by your book Ann and am keeping a Gifts lists in my fight for joy in the midst of my broken heart.

  49. Wow, what a lovely post; I enjoyed reading. You are a gifted writer. This is the first time I have dropped by on this blog. I will enjoy reading more of your thoughts.
    The picture of your daughter is adorable and the heart sweet. I will ponder on your thoughts for a while.
    Check my blog out sometime!
    Blessings to you! LeAnn

  50. My heart is breaking due to my husband who walked away from God and his family. The man who said” till death does us part” wants a divorce and left me with a 15 month old who doesn’t know her father from a stranger. God comforts me every day and I know he put your message here for me today. Thank you…

    • I have been there…with 4 children ages 18 mo to 8. It’s been almost 8 years and I have learned, grown, watched God provide generously. I pray for you that He will strengthen you and uphold you…that He will bring you a miracle and turn your husband’s heart back to Him, back to the wife of his youth, and back to his child,

    • I am there right now, with 3 little ones 5 & under. My prayers for you echo that of “anonymous”…For God to touch, heal & restore your marriage, bringing your husband home to Him, you, & your daughter. Don’t give up on your marriage or your husband, even if you do divorce. “For nothing is impossible with God” Luke 1:37. If I can post this, go to http://www.rejoiceministries.org, it will greatly bless & encourage you during this difficult time. You will be in my prayers!

  51. My heart is breaking a bit today over my single, 21 year old daughter being pregnant. I am being held together by God’s grace and perfect love. Yet I feel very fragile.

  52. My heart is breaking a lotta bit right now. Because My Daddy died two weeks ago. And it still doesn’t quite seem real. and it has never felt right. and I make it through my days as if nothing has changed and then wonder if I’m ok or not because shouldn’t I need more time off work? Shouldn’t I have a harder time getting out of bed? Does it say something about me or my love for him that I am continuing to function quite well??

    So my heart is breaking. My Daddy is gone. And I will never get to kiss his stubbly cheek again on this side of the veil.

  53. My heart’s breaking b/c of an unwanted divorce…but rejoicing b/c God provided again and again…finally a new, godly husband and example for my children.

    My heart’s breaking b/c my children were made to live, against their will, with their father when I re-married and moved to another state, And last night, a tornado struck the house where they now live, tearing off part of the porch. BUT I’m rejoicing b/c God heard our prayers! He shielded them with His hand!

    My heart’s breaking b/c I am seeing so many Christians divorcing…on the verge of divorce…struggling in their marriages…with pornography…with selfishness…with adultery…. But I rejoice b/c I am having the opportunity to do premarital counseling for soon-to-be newlyweds, and point them on the right path, and keep them accountable. Because I am given the chance to use my pain to reach others…to comfort those who mourn. To encourage those who struggle.

    I am learning the power of prayer, of the faith that grows as we step out. Thank you, Ann, for all of the blessings you ahve given me since I learned of your daily sharing.

    Praying God’s blessing on all the hurts listed here….may He heal them in His own way. All things do work togehter for good for those who belong to Him.

  54. “If you’re like so many people I know, your shattered dreams may have left you wondering if God is still actively involved in your life. You may wonder if he even cares or if you’re too broken and bruised to be healed by him. You probably wonder quite a lot about what to do next.

    No matter what has happened or how you feel, please know you’re not alone. Because here’s what I’m learning: everyone needs healing. Everyone.

    Everyone has shattered dreams.

    Every one of us has been let down and disappointed in one way or another.
    And every one of us needs healing for our brokeness.

    Everyone.”

    Quoted from Plan B (What Do You Do When God Doesn’t Show Up The Way You Thought He Would) by Pete Wilson

  55. This post is so beautiful………it’s often through our little ones that God shows us so much. Thank you for sharing your heart and the heart of your little one : )

    Sweet Blessings,
    Pam

  56. Beautiful, beautiful, absolutely beautiful! Precious words from Shalom, “And maybe the love get’s in easier here where it’s tore?”

  57. The loss of my marriage and all our dreams together. The fact that while I have hope of someday seeing my dreams fulfilled, my husband must change his dreams to fit himself. The fact that even my own family cannot possibly understand how my heart hurts or accept my husband as he is. The loneliness I feel as I must lose my lover to have a best friend. My heart breaks again every day and all I can do is sit and wait for God to pour his love into the emptiness.

  58. But it is this last picture of Shalom that stills this beating heart. Ann, she is growing up! And beautifully so. Where are those chubby cheeks that I have seen so often over at your place? Such loveliness.

    And the heart to match.

    I have been praying for Q this week, dear one. I can’t wait to hear.

    Sending so much love.

  59. Wow, Ann. Beautiful. Amazing. Your words and your sweet and true daughter…both bringing joyful tears to the Father’s eyes, I’m sure.

    So many good things to now ponder…

    I’m breaking for my friend whose struggling financially, for my sister whose marriage is broken, for a family whose mom and wife is batalling cancer. But God’s love is big enough to cover and hold and claim it all! Amen.

  60. I’m new here, and maybe the last to post for the day. I am completely amazed how God led me to this site and a group of strangers, and I feel like it’s home. Imagine what heaven will be like! Adorable, profound truths spoken through your adorable child, Ann.
    This brought to mind an ancient prayer from Mecthild of Magdeburg:
    Lord, I will tear the heart of my soul in two and you must lay therein. You must lay yourself in the wounds of my soul.
    I’m thanking God tonight for having found this community.

  61. And my heart splinters into thousands of pieces of debris when my first tells me
    she is “so through with me and my stories”….and I have been trying so hard to hold
    myself together over these past two years since my beloved’s death with stories of 46 yrs together….and a loving God who loves us each………….I shatter and collapse…she the first, the one her father held in his palm and fell adoringly in love with …who cried tears of joy over her….and 45 years later….she leaves injury and pain spoken into my ears….I wonder, could her father hear? Can those in heaven hear us?

    • I’d give anything to hear my mother’s stories again though they were many and i didn’t always appreciate them when I had the chance to listen to them. I pray you will know peace and joy again. maybe your daughter will have a change of heart. maybe you will find a young person who will value your wisdom. God bless and keep you.

  62. “and why be afraid of the broken things? Of being a broken thing? ”

    loved this, ann. fused hope into my weary heart tonight~

  63. ………..Hmmmm. Do I jump in here, this sea of beauty……feet first or head first? My first post….my heart aches and is taped up and aches some more for our city that only weeks ago experienced a devestating earthquake. I ache for the lives lost, the CBD gone, homes broken on the edge of a cold winter. I ache for Him to visit, and to say it will all be OK. That the 1000s of aftershocks won’t come to anything more than more broken contents and a few more cracks. My heart is a little broken as I look and wonder how we will recover as a city. I can only face today, and hope for tommorrow . But it is through those cracks that light can be seeen.. I am not brave, But He is hope.

  64. Ann, through tears of worship over His sovereignty do I tell you that this is exactly what I needed today. I have asked the Lord to do just that. To break my heart, to sift it, to prune it, to do whatever it takes. I have clung to something far too long. I’ve excused it over and over, all in the name of the past. It’s time to stop the blame game, to stop the excuses and truly be set free. I can not over come. And for the first time, after my own heart breaking, I’ve laid it down on the altar, knowing not through any power of my own, but only through His strength can healing begin. May God continue to use you and your precious family. To strengthen, to uplift, to encourage, to confirm His words in our lives. Thank you.

  65. Lovely post as always. Thank you Anne for your transparent, honest and candid recounting of life – you put in words what I feel, experience, think and do daily, only you have the gift of writing and expressing well what is in my heart.
    My heart is breaking for people who are lonely, for feeling torn between the many who need an encouragement, a visit, a play date, a get out of the house walk or a dinner… and how to balance that with my own active family, my husband and his needs and real physical things that has to happen – ie shopping, cleaning, cooking. My heart breaks as I push our needs aside for others.. I do not want to hurt anyone, yet the ones I hurt the most are the ones closest to me. My heart breaks for this world where there are so few people who truly care for relationship, fellowship and real honest friendship – yet that is what most people desire.

  66. Beautiful post! It is true, He is near to the broken hearted. The pain of losing one you love, ( I lost my 9 year old son, 14 years ago), is awful and it changes you. But, as time has passed, God has been real to me, come to me, taught me to pray, taught me to cry, taught me to smile again. My view has been changed from the temporal to the eternal, at least a little bit as I walk in this flesh. If we could just glimpse our lives through His eyes, we’d see His plan. For now, we trust Him, we grow in Him, we learn to worship Him.
    As bad as the pain has been over losing a child, the fellowship with Christ in this suffering is sweeter. One day, Heaven!

  67. My heart breaks that my anger hurts my children and my husband every day. I feel like I am ruinning them and that they would all be better off w/ouut me. I feel broken, I am so weary of trying sooo hard to do right w/ homeschool and creating meaninful moments to draw them to thir creator and then I in the next breath teach them anger and the wrong ways to handle that…breaking their beautiful spirits. I just want the forgetfulness, the irritability, bitterness from my parents, the anger to leave me..I want to be someone NEW. I want to love right. THank u to the one who posted..Faith keeps you staying when your emotions just want to leave, give up, run away..

    • April, I’ve walked where you now walk. I was the angry mama who was sure that I was destroying my children. I too believed the lie that they would all be better off without me.

      April, don’t believe that lie! That lie had me dry cleaning my husband’s suit and making sure my girls had dresses to wear to my funeral. I’d gone to the point where I planned my suicide. My wonderful husband asked for my help two days before I has planned to follow through with my suicide. Afterwards looked me in the eye and told me that I was the most precious person in his life. He told me that he couldn’t do any of this farming, raising kids even just being with out me.

      Those words were God sent. I stood in silent shock and then this wailing started deep in my stomach and I laid on the grass sobbing. My husband just rocked me, held me until I could tell him what I had planned to do. He only left for 5 minutes – long enough to remove the vehicles from the garage and bolt the doors shut. They stayed bolted shut for over 6 months. While we went to see doctor’s and I received the help I needed.

      Get the help you need April. Don’t let Satan steal your joy and your life! Your children will not be better off without you. God placed those children in your life because He has a greater plan. Face your heavenly Father and cry out for His help. Please contact me, I’d love to listen to your story and walk along with you sister.
      Amy ~ The Crimson Beloved

  68. Ann, I am broken over divisive talk that happens in the body. Misunderstandings that turn into hurt, that become gossip and can break unity in the body. Speaking of broken hearts, I know this behavior breaks the heart of Jesus. His heart was fully poured out for us, must we continue to open old wounds. I pray that we (especially as sisters in the Lord) would be safe havens for sharing with one another, allowing each other to grow in the vertical as we are walking talking grace to one another on the horizontal.
    Your daughter is precious…teachable moments are the best…when mom and child both walk away with a lesson learned. God is so abundant!

  69. My heart is broken….nothing seems to go right. We are being foreclosed on…I find solace in your site. I am Eastern Orthodox…I should know better than to wallow….Peace.

  70. Wow. I have just spent time reading all the broken and shattered dreams. Lifting each one up as I read. But, knowing and believing that He uses the broken and shattered dreams to give us the better. To taste and see His goodness.

    Ann, reading your book and practicing eucharisteo has changed my life. I started my gratitude journal way before your book came out. In the last six months we have moved (downsized house), my step dad went through radiation, my real dad(who I am estranged from) almost died, my sister moved to Germany(my brother in law is about to deploy to Afghanistan and she is pregnant with their first child), my best friend moved to a different state and my husband lost his aunt.

    Even though all this stuff happened in six months, He has used it to bind up some wounds that have been there for a LONG time. He is teaching me to cast my burdens on Him and not take them back. To give them to Him because I am not able to carry them. They are way too heavy. And that He is GOOD. In the bad and the good.

    About a month ago I had an experience like the one where you ran out of the house to the moon. You can read about it here: http://allisonthemclendons.blogspot.com/2011/04/alive.html. Your book really encouraged me to face my fears. And I found Him through my fears. I faced the hill that I had always wanted to climb. He breathed new life into me that day. A desire to live right where I am. To fully live. In the bad and the good. Practicing gratitude. Intentional seeking the goodness of the One Who made me.

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I pray for you often. Your courage to spread the Gospel and love others inspires me. Your hunger for the Lord has helped to grow my love for the Lord and helped heal the brokenness in my own heart that I have been searching for my whole life.

    Love in Christ,
    allison

  71. “…It’s over the face of the deep and the hearts split deeper that God hovers close, the broken-hearted He binds up, swaddles near, and it’s a life broken like a jar that anoint Him with alabaster worship for His love that ultimately heals.

    I am learning to embrace the fact that I don’t do brokenness well. And, it’s ok. (breathing another sigh of relief) I have an appointment with my Heavenly Father, everyday and His plan is to everyday, every moment, every breath I breathe – make all things new. Yes, my heart is broken. Yes, I don’t love the fact that I can’t hide it very easily of late – but, I am never in an impossible situation too hard for God (or one that God can not squeeze the IM out of IMPOSSIBLE.) My God sees me–He sees us! He see’s us through the eyes of redemption. Our lives may consist of broken and bumpy roads at times but none that our God has not walked before us…and is walking with us even now. My Mom use to say, it takes crushed grapes to make wine and broken bread to feed the hungry. I am encouraged today to stand in awe of a holy God who not only embraces brokenness but broken people…me and you. He embraces our humanity as much as He embraces our spirit. He created both. We don’t have to hide we are hurting. He knows. Cracks, holes, splits (however deep) are personal appointments with God for His divine healing, love and comfort. We are broken bread He loves, heals, and makes ready to feed the hungry (others who are hurting and in need of His encouragement and healing too.) Thank you for this site and your encouragement today. Blessings always!! (Website is my Dad’s Selah radio program)

  72. What’s breaking your heart a bit right now? Women in the church who are so busy doing (for themselves, others, God), that they have no time to pause and listen to a breaking heart. One crying out in desperate hurt, seeking hard the healing necessary to become whole. There is ‘unseen’ hurting all around them. The walking wounded. The broken. Those of us that do not know how to take that next step toward healing. And simply seeking wisdom and spiritual mentorship.
    How might you wake to His healing love around you everywhere? When others turn away it forces one to press in. Into the Savior who has made The Way. Who will complete that which He has begun. To place, even more firmly, into His hands that which the soul cannot bear. The loneliness that sometimes comes like waves of darkness threatening to swallow in the midst of the brightest day. “Into the arms of Jesus, Deeper and deeper I go.” For He loves and uses brokenness. The darkness and despair will break into Noonday bright and He will use it. For His glory. In His power, pressing on toward the mark. Because this season of raw hurt and desperation will be used to help someone else and to ultimately glorify Him.

    Remembering the Garden of Gethsemane. Though attended, Christ was alone in His darkness, seeking the Father.

    • Thank you….your words have been beautifully spoken to my need of reminding
      myself of the bigger picture….The Garden of Gethsemane is a beautiful example
      of our Savior in his deepest moment of submission….I bow to conform to His
      binding up of my heart…though not healed, it has begun. Eternity beckons us to
      understand where HE reigns now and forevermore….and where I should be living
      to go to each day. Please PRAY for all in deeper pain than ever experienced before in my State of Alabama. Many need the Light of His Healing…His Heart…and His Cross.

  73. My broken heart right now comes from plans I have made for my future not working out. It comes from knowing deep down that no matter how much I plan it is God’s plan that matters, yet still struggling with my stubborn mind wanting to see my plans work out. It comes from multiple times when I have thought I was on the right path, going where it seemed God wanted me to go, only to see a roadblock placed in my way. It comes from the pain of having every grad school send me, “Sorry–thanks but no thanks!” e-mails. It is thinking that God has called me to work in a very specific field and then having every door shut right before I can walk through, making me wonder if God is telling me that this is the wrong dream. It is from struggling with fears and doubts and wanting to just sit down and cry, all the while listening to people tell me how strong I am and how they believe in me–just hang in there. Though their words are loving and heartfelt, sometimes it’s all I can do not to scream out, “I don’t want to be strong! I want to give in and give up!” It is also knowing deep down that my biggest dream has nothing to do with grad school, yet being too afraid to step out of my comfort zone and see if that’s the dream I should be chasing.

    I know I have been saved by the One who holds me in His hand and knows just what He’s got planned for me. Sometimes, though, the heartbreak seems to block my vision. Here’s hoping that the love really does get in easier “where it’s tore”!

    • Mandy, I’ve been there and yes, it is hard and yes, sometimes nobody understands… yet there is One who does, and how deep and how wide His love is! Praying for you…

  74. My heart is breaking for the pain of a lost little one who has gone home way too soon. I am speaking of death last Fri. of little Emma from EspeciallyHeather, the precious little girl of the beautiful family; it just made my heart ache.

    This is what sin has done to our world, untold pain and sorrow…but the Lord will bind up our wounds, and dry all our tears. He has not left us in our despair, He gave us His son and all will be well again, more than well!! He brings beauty from ashes. Praise His holy name!!

    I will pray for all those who expressed their brokenness here!! Thank you, Ann, for so many of your words that have touched my life in ways I can’t even express!! God bless you for sharing your life!

  75. What breaks my heart is the apathy I see every day among some Christian folk who don’t see how much their testimony is needed and how much their heart could shine from its broken place on someone who just became broken. It seems to affect all ages, young and old, and that breaks my heart. Where are the heroes who step out in transparency and love???

  76. THANK you Ann, your postings are PRECIOUS and inspiring, always touching me right where it is needed.

    My heart is breaking about my sin, so evident to me in the suffering of animals. Because of sin, the whole creation is groaning… when I see the suffering of an innocent animal, it tears my heart right open, showing to me my guilt and the devastating result it has in life: death. For the wages of sin is death: because of sin, death came into this world.

    And then…the sweet balm of His Mending. Thank YOU Jesus… Lamb of God.

  77. My heart is breaking for my oldest son, recently diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome. For his confusion, his anxiety and embarrassment, for others’ misunderstanding. I pray, with all that is in me, that the Lord works in power to draw his heart ever closer to His own–even through this suffering, and that He grants me patience to love and listen well, and to give voice to the stuttered places.

    • Dear Emily,
      I will be praying for you and your son… my son was diagnosed at 19 with Asperger Syndrome…only last year. He has been confused and lost and lonely all his life, no matter what I did, no matter how hard I tried to help him tap into the joy of life. He simply cannot fit in, he is apart: and I believe for the Lord’s good purpose. He turned away from the Lord for a season, and I pray with all my might that he will now stay and grow. He is suffering from depression, which had me dreading many, too many times, and still, even now, just last night in fact… Dear Emily, it is so difficult for us as mothers… I would give anything, even my life, right now, if he could break through the glass bubble. I understand your pain… The best we can do is hold His hand with the one hand, and our son’s with the other… let His Love reach you…reach him. Bind your son to you with unbreakable cords of love; bind yourself to Father God with the same. Tap into His Love, which will anchor your son, hold on to our Father who promised that he will not break the broken reed or extinguish a smoldering wick. Take heart, for He is our strength and our shield: He has overcome, and we can rest in Him. Praying for you and your son.

  78. My heart’s breaking because I am unable to be physically intimate with my husband. We have struggled with this debilitating condition/diagnosis for our entire marriage. I am constantly afraid he will leave me in search of a woman who can do what I cannot. He assures me he won’t … but it’s hard for me to believe. Maybe God’s love does get in the broken places better … I sure hope so.

    • Please speak to your Gynecologyist soon. I believe he will be able to guide you to some help. Please do this for yourself first, then for your husband. God answers our prayers, but sometimes we have to “wade in the water” like the children of Israel.
      Expect a miracle….I can feel one coming for you. Put that song “wade……” into you-tube and listen closely. It is an old spiritual song.

  79. I lost my oldest son Chip who was 28 at the time, in a car accident. It was on May 12, 2008 and the day after Mothers Day. I know that Chip is in Heaven, but I miss him so badly here on earth. I feel that my heart is still broken and will never be as it was.

  80. Oh Ann, I LOVE the line, “he pulls on skin so I can fit into mine…” I also love the pure hearts of children! (That’s why I had four, taught little ones and currently help part-time at a fitness childcare.) Thank you for sharing!