Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas in the Land of Broken

I am living in the Land of Broken. Today, my office blind won’t release the catch, so it’s going to stay up all night. This morning my computer technician told me my audio port is broken. Yesterday, the vacuum gave off that distinct burnt rubber aroma. Last week our favorite lamp smashed to the floor.

Broken is disappointment. At the least, it’s an interruption in my plans. Plans to close the blinds, finish the audio CD I’m making for a Christmas gift, clean the house for company. At most, it’s the sense I’m not good enough, don’t have enough, and will go broke trying to fix the broken things.

The other day I was listening to that old Cat Stevens song, “Moon Shadow.”

If I ever lose my hands . . . I won’t have to work no more.
If I ever lose my eyes . . . I won’t have to cry no more.
And if I ever lose my legs . . . I won’t have to walk no more.
If I ever lose my mouth . . . I won’t have to talk no more.

There’s something beautiful in letting go of the fear of loss. In knowing, whatever breaks, you’ll have a new and lovely replacement – even if it’s just the freedom not to have to work, strive, walk, talk. There’s a similar letting go by Job, who suffered tremendous loss, in the Biblical account: “The Lord gave, the Lord has taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord.”

For many years, I didn’t accept loss. I denied it, fought it, strove against it. Now I’ve come to see that the only thing we can truly ever lose is our happiness. Meanwhile, all the trappings of our lives trick us into thinking they are what make us happy.

The greatest gift is acknowledging that my happiness comes from a deeper source. It isn’t dependent on circumstances. I know this sounds simple, but it really is something you can practice - it’s changing my outlook. It isn’t conditional upon “getting all my stuff done.” All I need is that Presence, that Moon Shadow, that reminder that Love is here to bring joy amidst all the broken things.


Mrs G said...

This time of year it's so hard to take that extra minute to stop and think how lucky we are, how all the things we think make Christmas are not really what makes Christmas at all! Instead we run around like chickens with their heads cut off and try to finish everything to make everyone happy. Surprise! You can't make everyone happy no matter what. Well said, Christi. thanks for the reminder.

Lisa said...

Brilliant! I have known that Cat Stevens song since I was a little girl but have never really heard it before.

Happy Christmas!

Jeff said...

What a powerful truth! The world entices us to invest ourselves in it and then depend on it, and yet the world is, as you point out, broken. Finding the inner door to that place where things don't break is to find a path to a real peace. Thank you for sharing!

Anonymous said...

What a great reminder----Christmas is all about the land of the broken. If I'm broken, I must be in the right place. And if I'm broken I need a healer and the Great Healer is standing in the wings, waiting to heal. In this life we WILL have struggles and we DO have help. Letting Him in is a good start.

Merry Christmas!

Christi Krug said...

Mrs. G, thanks for the insight on how you can't make everyone happy. Lisa, how great: happy vs. merry! It was happier than it was merry this year, and that was fine with me. Jeff, great to hear from you. I love the "inner door to the place where things don't break." Hmmm. Anon, love that - if I'm broken I must be in the right place for the Healer. Happy New Year, all!