Give them pieces of your heart

By Dave Henning / December 23, 2016

“Instead of giving someone a piece of your mind — it’s far better to give them pieces of your heart.”- Ann Voskamp

In Chapter 16 (“When It Comes to Wooing God and Healing Wounds”) of The Broken Way, Ann Voskamp cites Jean Vanier, a Canadian Catholic philosopher.  Mr. Vanier observes:

“Most of the time to discover new meaning we have to go through a cross, we have to go through a breakdown.”

As a result, Ann states, two opposing options present themselves as a response to hurt and pain:

  1. throw up a barrier to vainly keep the hurt out, using bricks of escapism, defensiveness, apathy, or distraction
  2. break down your barriers, break right open, and let love with all its pain in; pick up your cross and choose the humility of vulnerability

Furthermore, no barrier in the world blocks out pain.  In addition, any attempt to block out pain only creates a pain all its own.

Yet, although being broken or rejected may hurt like a kind of hell, it will be holy.  For God created you to grow into something more.  However, you must be brave enough for this to happen.

Most noteworthy, Ann puts forth a significant caveat regarding anger:

“Never become a container for anger.  Anger is the only toxin that destroys what it’s carried in.”

Also, defending our own hearts deafens us to the cries of other hearts.  This absurdity (from the Latin surdus, meaning “deaf”) of hurt only changes when we listen to each other’s hearts.

Today’s question: Following your ministry downsizing or vocation loss, how have you given those responsible pieces of your heart?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Brokers of healing”

About the author

Dave Henning

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