1319. We have to go into the despair and go beyond it, by working and doing for somebody else, by using it for something else. ~Elie Wiesel

One wants to believe that there’s one relationship
in life that’s beyond betrayal. A relationship that’s beyond
that kind of hurt. And there isn’t.
~Edited quote by Caleb Carr

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There is a brokenness
out of which comes the unbroken,
a shatteredness
out of which blooms the unshatterable.
There is a sorrow
beyond all grief which leads to joy
and a fragility
out of whose depths emerges strength.
There is a hollow space
too vast for words
through which we pass with each loss,
out of whose darkness
we are sanctioned into being.
There is a cry deeper than all sound
whose serrated edges cut the heart
as we break open to the place inside
which is unbreakable and whole,
while learning to sing.
~Rashani Réa

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An ex-student of mine posted a letter on Facebook today in which she asked us all to remember that for a variety of reasons not everyone will have or is having a wonderful Christmas time. And so today, I’ve given thought to things that break and shatter us at times. No one is exempt from sorrow and grief in this world. And though we must and should allow ourselves time to “hold” onto and weep over the “dark nights of our souls,” it seems to me that we also have to leave each and every heartbreak at some point in time in the past and then seek and use the “lessons” that the gouging of the soul has shed light upon.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. ~Psalm 34:18  ✝

**Images via the Internet; collage at top created by Natalie

753. And then something invisible snapped inside her, and that which had come together commenced to fall apart. ~John Green

Drop the last year of your life
into the silent limbo of the past.
Let it go, for it was imperfect,
and thank God that it can go.
~Brooks Atkinson

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Have you ever had one of those stagnant years where the lackluster of life seems to have dulled and you are stuck in a kind of limbo? Well that’s the way life seemed during my Sophomore year in college. Not only had my father’s death at the end of the previous year dashed me against the hard rocks of an excruciating reality for the first time in my life, but my faith had been shaken, deeply shaken by events in and around his funeral. Not only had I to contend with his death and hypocrisy in the church but also the reality that some anger “business” between Dad and I was now never to be resolved and forgiven. That combined with some deplorable actions by the clergy and leaders in the church lead to what would become a decades-long derailment in my walk with the Lord. So indeed something had snapped inside me. I was barely 19 years old and I had commenced to fall apart which became clearly reflected in my first semester grades that year.  By midterm I found myself on scholastic probation both for the University as well as for my sorority.  Even my dreams of living in Paris had paled under the duress of my heartache and befuddlement. And for months and months nothing changed; lines had been blurred, dreams had faded, and hope had grown dim. I was stuck, stuck in limbo, stuck in unfamiliar waters of being, and all the while suffering, hurting alone since I’d been told by elders I should put my grieving aside and be strong for my mom and two younger sisters. But life has a way of moving on whether one feels its progression or not, and by the end of the second semester, my grades had come back up and a tiny ray of light began to break through the gloomy cloud cover that had been shrouding my world.

A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit. ~Proverbs 15:13  ✝

**Photo of La Tour Eiffel taken by Natalie Scarberry