Monday, May 28, 2012

Broken Dreams

Dear Friends,

One of our own children had a difficult time conceiving.  I suddenly found myself wanting to be a grandmother more than anything else in the world!  I was glad of the feelings I began to experience on our children’s behalf, because it helped me to understand a little of their deep struggle.  Suddenly it seemed that everyone around us was getting pregnant and having babies – and I was buying shower gifts for others’ celebrations!  Everywhere we looked we saw babies.  The magazines were full of them; the TV commercials featured them.  Everyone was using cute little babies to sell their products.  Even young mothers playing in the park with their children triggered that yearning feeling.  Maybe this is your struggle too.
Or perhaps it is a longing to be married that has engendered bitterness.  Or maybe you have had high hopes for a career opportunity or have had some special personal goal that has been thwarted.  If this is the case, know that emptiness can invite bitterness to invade and control you.  Suddenly, you can come to the end and find yourself running on empty. It’s what we do at such times that determines our well-being and God’s glory!         
When you become obsessed with the notion that only the desired end can satisfy you, and the desired end is withheld, bitterness is bound to take over.  That is unless you turn it over to God.  But how do you do that, you may ask, when God is the One who has the power to give you your heart’s desire and has been busy withholding the very thing you beg Him for?  That’s a good question!  So how do we deal with this tension?
Talk to God about it – in prayer and in tears. That’s where it has to begin. You need to get alone and start to tell Him just how you feel about it all.  Even if you’ve done that a thousand times before, you can do it one more time!  Tell Him everything you’ve wanted to unload for so long!
It’s not that God doesn’t understand all of this, and it is certainly not that God has been detached or forgetful of your agony.  It is not even that God is ignorant of the facts of the case.  But it is necessary that you begin to tell Him what is in your heart.  Don’t worry about what you sound like either; let the angry tears flow.  And if you can’t put the whole sad scene into words because you’re so empty you even seem to be empty of words, just kneel down and say, “I am a prayer, Lord. Read me,” and He will!  You are in fact an open book to Him.  Read, marked, and learned, your story has already been recorded in heaven!
There is a beautiful therapy in this sort of praying, for the exercise of such heartfelt prayer eventually leads to hope!  The final step towards resolution is when we are able to accept whatever answer God gives us.  We are finally able to leave it with Him. There’s no more trying to twist God’s arm with enough prayer to make Him come through with the goods.  No more hoping that enough shouting, crying, and tearing our hair out will touch the heart of God and extract a favor He had for some reason been withholding.
Once we arrive at this point of abandonment of all our hopes and dreams, we are able to have a good cry, wash our face, get up and get on with it.  It’s at that point that God can really work and heal our broken dreams.

In His Love,

Jill Briscoe
Executive Editor 
Just Between Us Magazine


  1. Years ago this would not have comforted me. I didn't want to get over it. I wanted what I wanted. Rage against the machine culminated in tremendous bitterness of soul. All of my life I could not understand why nobody wanted me, why I was so undesirable. Then came the years when I realized that even if love found me, I could never receive it. A constant hunger that could never be satisfied. After that, there were the years of recognizing I'd made romantic love an idol and trying to give it up. Then the giving up that brought a certain peace, and with it, an ever-present fear that I might one day relax vigilance and suddenly be caught again in the trap of romantic feelings for someone that would again lead to misery. I never want to go there again. Yet all the time, in the far recesses of my mind, is the desire for the love of a man and I have to remind myself again and again of what a false illusion romantic love is and what an impossibility it is for me. Then I distract myself so the longing goes away and I am numb for a time. Finally, I thank God in faith that the life He has chosen to give me is better.

  2. A word spoken to the heart that arrives right on time. Thank you for this morning's encouragement about broken dreams. You spoke directly to my heart this morning. God is in charge of my life and I am trusting him to take care of the promises e gave us.