I began my 2017 reading with Ann Voskamp’s The Broken Way. Honestly, I hesitated in reading her new book, but I am so glad I did. Ann is a poet; her words demand to be read in a melodic meter. They must be savored, word-by-word. She writes with sincerity and from an unapologetic stance that without Jesus, she would quite literally not be on this earth.
In The Broken Way she builds the readers vocabulary with words that whisper the philosophies of the holy.
Eucharisteo -giving thanks
Koinonia- communion in Christ’s brokenness and giveness
Cruciformity-Christ’s ultimate sacrifice of himself on the Cross. Which as she says, begs us to “Never be afraid of broken things- because Christ is redeeming everything” (187).
As I took in the words and turned each page, God began to show up, as He often does when I am reading words written by those who love Him. I felt both challenged and affirmed as I marinated in the richness of what God taught.
Maybe the only way to care for your wounds is to woo God. And you woo God by pressing your broken wounds into His, and finding that in Him, Him in you, you’re touching the broken wounds of all the other wounded and entering the joy of Him–intimate communion, koinonia, with Him. (220)
Am I living a life in which I share my brokenness readily with God, and in turn, allow my pressing into Him cause an overflow of love for others who are also broken? Are my eyes open and looking for opportunities to speak into brokenness of others with the grace and love of Christ? Do I speak and write about my brokenness without reservation because Jesus broke open for us without reservation?
Someone just choosing to be with you in your fire with a bit of theirs–can turn out to be better than anyone trying to extinguish your fire. Shared flames and shared burned scars can ignite hearts into a great fire that fights fires. (254)
I felt affirmed: In days past, I walked with friends and family amidst the blaze. Anguishing fires are surrounding some of my dear friends and though I can not extinguish the danger, I can stand next to them as the flames press in. Friends and family have not forsaken me in my own brokenness–they’ve not shyed away from the heat of the flames, but point me to the God who can soothe the burns. “When suffering is shared, communion is tasted. And maybe the fellowship of the broken–koinonia in the brokenness–begins to mitigate the suffering” (254).
Ann Voskamp’s The Broken Way reminds the broken to take the brokenness, accept it for what it is, align it with Jesus’ brokenness, and then give the hope you’ve found away.
Give. It harkens. Give.
Give hope away to others who need to know that brokenness leads the way to the abundant life where Jesus dwells.
Sarah Dohman is a nurse, kayak enthusiast, coffee addict, microbrew lover, globe trotter, adorer of friends and family. She has a weakness for donuts, runs in 5k races, and cannot get enough tea and books. She loves writing more than talking (and she talks a lot), can be seen at Target frequently, and is loving life in her thirties. She believes God has called her to this space to bring joy and encouragement through words to friends and family, near and far. You can find more from Sarah at her blog or on Twitter.