From Broken to Warrior

“But my dear, isn’t it through the cracks how the light comes in?”

~ Unknown

I once heard a story about a woman who had two buckets. Every day she would fill them up and go water all of the flowers in her garden. One of the buckets, looked absolutely perfect. Shiny, strong, and didn’t have a single crack in it. The other bucket however; was filled with cracks. It leaked, it shook, and it often spilled the water.

The leaky bucket felt inferior to the other one. It felt inadequate, and worthless. What good could a cracked bucket do? The other one held its water flawlessly, while this bucket would lose half of the water before even making it to the garden. It was then that this broken and bruised bucket told its owner that it was not good enough for her. 

“I’ve been leaking water every morning” the bucket said.”I’m so sorry for making life more difficult for you. I’m so sorry for being broken. It’s time that you replace me with a new, better, and more efficient bucket” it said to the owner. 

The owner simply smiled and said: “Do you think I haven’t noticed your cracks? I see them, but I look past them.” “Look at all of these beautiful flowers” the owner said. “I may have planted the seeds, but you are the one that is doing the watering each and every day to make them grow tall and strong.”


 

How do you view the cracks in your bucket? Do you nurture them with tenderness & loving care? Or do you judge & shame them for being there?

I think we’re all a little broken. We get hurt, we make mistakes, our hearts break, our flaws show, and we begin to shame ourselves.

So often we beat ourselves up for our weaknesses and shortcomings. We’re not tall enough, we’re not skinny enough, we’re not pretty, or strong, or brave enough. Maybe we have something that embarrasses us. Maybe we’ve made mistakes and can’t even begin to forgive ourselves. Maybe we’re allowing ours or others’ opinions of us consume & define who we are. 

Can you relate? I know that I sure can.

My biggest toxic habit is putting myself down. I look at my flaws, my imperfections, and my mistakes, all as failures. I constantly punish myself for not being like everyone else. I constantly second guess my value, my worth, and my “lovable” factor.  I deal with insecurity and confidence almost on a daily basis. *Seriously people, self-depreciation is not a healthy trait to have.*

After hearing that story – or parable – above though, something changed. It was like a switch flipped in my brain. I had the absolute wrong perspective about myself and my flaws.

Instead of drawbacks, what if these annoying imperfections are really blessings in disguise? What if they really make us shine? What if they give us a purpose? What if our brokenness, our cracks, all water a trail of flowers that we didn’t even know exist? Or a trail of flowers that we were too blind to appreciate?

Drop the mic. Let that sink in.

I have a beautiful piece of cracked glass in my home. When the sun shines upon it, it brings out the most breathtaking colors. It fills the room with shades of green, blue, red, and yellow. It’s like a rainbow burst and landed right in my living room.

That too, got me thinking.

If light can shine through a cracked object such as that, and make it so beautiful, what makes me any different? Why can’t light shine through our cracks and bring out our own unique and timeless beauty?

Big news coming….are you ready? It can. Our greatest strengths can come from our greatest weaknesses. But, we have to allow it. We have to be receptive, open our hearts, open our minds, and allow that energy in.

We have to be warriors and stop shaming ourselves. Instead of judging ourselves, lets dig deep inside and gently love those flaws that we were once so ashamed of. Instead of hiding them, lets embrace them. Embrace what we think is undesirable and thank the good Lord for the path that we are on.

Because…there’s a reason for it. So, I am making the declaration today to start letting the light in through my cracks. To start seeing the flowers that are growing from my own leaky, crack filled bucket.

So what do you say? Would you join me?


 

Prayer: God, thank you for creating me as an imperfect vessel. Thank you for my flaws, my mistakes, my cracks. Thank you for the wonderful lessons that have come my way because of them. Help me to continue to always see me as YOU see me: your blessed child with whom you love unconditionally. Help me to recognize that you are with me every step of the way, holding my hand, and guiding me down my own path. Amen.

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{Starting Over} + Introduction

I’ve been blogging for about two years now. This whole journey has been such a learning process for me. When I started writing back in 2014, I had no idea that I was about to discover another passion of mine.

I was in my third year at Utica College when I saw a job opening for a student blogger. I didn’t know a whole heck of a lot when it came to that (and still don’t!), but, it sounded so interesting, and I was pretty sure it would be something I enjoyed. So, I took the leap, my application was accepted, and I soon became an official student blogger for Utica College.

I absolutely loved my job. My requirements were to write about events going on in and around campus, as well as the community. Basically, anything was acceptable as long as it had something to do with college life or community topics.

Gradually, I found my voice and realized that I loved to give people advice, or share my stories with other college students. Sharing helpful hints to my peers became a regular part of my writing. Anytime someone shared or commented, it felt so great. Especially because I was relieved to have finally found my talent. (It only took me 20 years of nonstop searching.)


 

When I graduated from college, I knew that I still wanted to write. I still wanted my voice to be heard, and I still had an incredible desire to help others – in some way. So, I dubbed myself “The Positive Princess” and jumped in all the way into blogging. And completely drowned.

I did build a following – which was terrific. I managed to have a couple of my blogs go viral and be published on other blogging sites. I got to make friends with a few people who lived a billion miles away from me, but who loved to write and have an impact on people as much as I did. *Shoutout to Jenifer Fair – the founder of Shoutout Radiance! Seriously guys, check out her work. She’s so inspirational and is going to change so many lives!*

Somewhere along the way though, I lost my fire. I lost my passion for writing. I lost my focus. It was becoming more like a chore than a cathartic hobby. I was caught up in reading about becoming a professional blogger, and striving to be the perfect writer. The more I read about blogging, the more I wanted to achieve success and be that perfect blogger.

I would sit at the computer every night, trying to write something that would be meaningful, positive, profound, and successful. When that didn’t happen, sometimes I would publish something, just to publish. After all, all of the tips on blogging said that 2-3 posts per week was the norm!

When I couldn’t think of a single thing, when I felt negative, or that article didn’t do as well as I hoped, I punished myself. I beat myself up and completely lost all confidence in writing. It took me a little while to realize that the way I was approaching writing….was all wrong. I felt a stirring in me to take a little breather from writing, to gain my focus back, and to completely start over. And that is what I am doing…


I am breaking free from my need to be perfect. I am breaking free from the need for likes, shares, and comments on social media.

I don’t want glory or success. I don’t want praise. I don’t want compliments.

What I want, is to make a positive impact in this world. If that can be done through my writing, then that will be enough for me.

If my story about my anxiety, my depression, or just my life in general can change someone, my heart will be filled with joy.

I want to focus on being real in my writing. Being myself. Being unedited. I want to build a blog that matters. That people can identify with. I want to inspire others – in the hopes that someone out there will read my words and know that they are not or never will be alone.

I plan to be an open book in this blog. Completely vulnerable. Which, scares me a little bit, but that is what is tugging at my heart. I don’t plan to be all sunshine and rainbows all of the time. Because that’s not reality. BUT; I do plan to be as encouraging as possible, walking down the path that my Lord and Savior put me on. And, I hope you’ll join me.


Prayer: Lord, as I begin this new writing adventure, help me to focus on what YOU want me to put into the world. Let me be a positive light to others, and let me bring the light of Your love into others. Please walk beside me and guide my way. Use me as an imperfect vessel to reach out to those in need. I accept Your will for my life, today and always. Amen.