Emptying The Human Trash Can! Mending the Broken Pieces
A few days ago while putting away a glass in the cupboard, I accidentally dropped it and it fell to the floor. The glass was shattered in various pieces and could not be repaired. As I bent down and gathered the shards of glass I noticed that some of the pieces were smaller than others. I was amazed at how many different shapes and sizes of glass had collected on my kitchen floor. The impact of the fall caused pieces of broken glass to scatter everywhere, even to places that I never expected. At that moment I realized the amount of damage done to the glass depends on how the glass was dropped and the impact that was made when it hit the floor. You see, the glass had fallen from my hand and bounced onto the edge of the counter and it finally landed on the floor. Before the glass hit the floor it had taken a journey that allowed it to be chipped at every traumatic impact point.
After the glass broke, naturally I picked up the larger pieces and put them in a plastic bag. I swept the remaining smaller pieces into the dust pan and placed them in a separate bag. I carried both bags outside to the recycling bin to be thrown in with the rest of the discarded glass and plastic. As I walked back to the house I thought of how one glass could cause so much trouble. I’d spent a great deal of time and energy making sure that there was no broken glass left for me to step on and injure myself later in the day. I realized that the probability of the glass being dropped and ruined for further use depended on how the glass was handled in the beginning. You see, in a rush to clean the kitchen and get on with my day, I haphazardly handled the glass rough and did not take the time and care that I should have in order to ensure that the glass remained secure and intact for further use. For the rest of the day I thought of how my favorite glass had been broken. Sometimes the way that something is broken can have a greater effect than the actual loss of the item. Thinking about the loss of my favorite glass due to my carelessness, I immediately thought about my very dear friend that is really more like family. My friend was involved in an emotional relationship with a man for years. Suddenly, with no warning, the man sent her a text message that read “just wanted you to know that I am engaged” (maybe not in those exact words) but nonetheless, you get my point. Ironically, the announcement of the engagement did not affect her as much as the delivery of the message. The cold and disrespectful nature of the delivery is what caused her to grow numb leaving her dazed and confused. Often times the way that we are handled determines the degree of injury upon impact.
Sometimes we handle ourselves as roughly as I handled that glass and the way that man handled my friend. We allow ourselves to be dropped, shaken and bruised and with each traumatic event a piece of us is chipped away leaving us broken. It is not always other people who cause us injury or harm; sometimes it is ourselves and our own actions that affect us. Often times we fail to properly dispose of our internal brokenness and debris. Instead of going through the process of cleaning up and permanently discarding of our emotional debris we hold on to it and add other things on top of it. As we continue to add problems on top of situations and situations on top of issues we find that we have turned ourselves into human trash cans. As you know, if trash continues to accumulate it will become rancid and smell up the entire house making it unbearable until you are forced to get up and take it outside of your home. Just as you don’t want to sit in your home and smell trash you should not want to carry it around inside your body making you so sick that you can’t even stand to be around yourself. As human trash cans we continue to collect the debris of hopelessness, abandonment, broken hearts, broken relationships and past failure. In order to take that step toward our rediscovery we must take an internal inventory emptying out our emotional trash cans and turning them into recycling receptacles. I chose to throw my broken glass into the recycling container instead of the trash container because the glass can be recycled into something productive and useful. Scientifically, it takes less energy to make products from recycled glass; so that last little bit that you have left is enough to create something new. Our past experiences should make us stronger allowing us to turn a negative situation into something positive. As we take our journey of rediscovery, let us gather our broken pieces and use God’s Grace, Mercy and the gift of a second chance as the glue that will mend us and make us whole again! The Potter wants to put you back together again.