Yesterday I had the INCREDIBLE opportunity to hear one of my favorite bloggers speak. If you don’t follow Rachel Macy Stafford at Hands Free Mama (handsfreemama.com), go now..well finish reading this…then go. She is incredible, real, inspiring, and a Hoosier. I had been debating whether or not to share this post. It’s personal, raw, and a bit unnerving to think of others reading it. But Rachel said something during her talk that moved me to share, “When we see each other’s scars we love each other more”. So here I am….bearing scars……

Our church believes in healing the 6 broken places of the world- separation, isolation, brokenness, injustice, hatred, and decay of the planet. As a congregation we are often asked which of these places resonate with us most. Every time we are asked, I come up blank. None of them really resonated with me. I had never felt especially called by any of them until I spent some quiet time at a retreat recently. When I sat and read the definition of “brokenness” as “Human being’s bodies, minds and spirits are broken” I felt a stirring. Below is what I journaled…

Brokenness resonates with me because I have been there. I have been at the bottom. Physically, mentally, spiritually tired, broken, worn down. But most people, even those in my inner circle, even myself at times, would have never known. I wore the smile, painted a picture of happiness. Lying, even to myself. Where I was was dark. Even darker than I knew then. Until the day I wanted to leave. Pack my things, run away and find some quiet. Nothing happened any different that day. It was just a step, one step backwards, one step blindly behind me. And instead of falling, I was caught by the arms of my Savior.

I knew I needed help, I knew I had to say the words out loud that I had held under my breath for so long. “I need help”, “I am struggling”, “I am hurting and not okay”. So led by the Spirit, I made an appointment, started on some medication, and began to feel like someone I recognized but had lost touch with. I started to experience grace for myself. Allowing myself to feel overwhelmed but not hopeless. And each day, as my seratonin levels rose, I took another step towards the sun. And into the light of The Son. I had to step out of my comfort zone and work on faith. Work on digging into those hard questions. What do I believe? Why do I believe it? Work on surrounding myself with a community of people who would allow me to explore that faith. I started being discipled. The Holy Spirit’s hand was at work starting with a text from a friend that read “Cara needs a roommate for this retreat” and ending with a conversation in my mini van late one night.

We were not created to walk this road of faith and life alone. We were meant to be in community. That community helps us heal the brokenness. Along the path towards healing my soul and spirit,  I learned to heal my body as well. I turned elsewhere when my soul was uneasy or my nerves were raw. I could sleep better. I could quiet my mind. I could make healthier choices. It is not “easy” but it is “easier”.

I realize now that every step we take on our journey can bring us closer or farther away from where we want to be. I have learned to expect those steps backwards. I brace myself for the fall but find comfort that He, along with the beautiful community I have built, is there to catch me.

6 Comments on Bearing scars

  1. It was a JOY to meet you on Saturday! This beautiful piece of your heart just fills me up. This line was especially powerful to me: “And each day, as my seratonin levels rose, I took another step towards the sun. And into the light of The Son.” You are a brilliant writer and your authenticity just draws me in. I am so thankful you published this. It is too important to keep under wraps. Keep writing … keep shining … God bless you.

    • Rachel….You have made my day, week, possibly year. Thanks so much for your kind words. They are beyond inspiring!

  2. It was a JOY to meet you on Saturday! This beautiful piece of your heart just fills me up. This line was especially powerful to me: “And each day, as my seratonin levels rose, I took another step towards the sun. And into the light of The Son.” You are a brilliant writer and your authenticity just draws me in. I am so thankful you published this. It is too important to keep under wraps. Keep writing … keep shining … God bless you.

    • Rachel….You have made my day, week, possibly year. Thanks so much for your kind words. They are beyond inspiring!

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