One of the holiest experiences I’ve ever had as a pastor was leading a grief and loss group in the year after my divorce. People shared their experiences of loss, from the death of beloved spouses, to a diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s, to the redefining of a career. We held our pain communally and offered it to God for healing and redemption. The Holy Spirit hovered over each meeting with palpable presence; we all came out more whole and more convinced that God is active among us.
I felt at the time–and still do–that none of that would have been possible without my divorce. The members of that group might not have been able to trust me with their heartbreak if they’d thought I’d never felt it myself. We discovered together that the redemption of our brokenness is rarely the vindication we hope for. Instead, our losses become the place where we see God more clearly than ever before. In this way, our brokenness becomes holy.
This message is excerpted from “Dropping pretenses” by Collette Broady Grund in the August 2017 Cafe online magazine.
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