In the most recent years, Disney has released several Tinkerbell movies. Thanks to Netflix, and a few colds meaning movie and snuggle time, we’ve been watching A LOT of Tinkerbell lately.
We’ve seen them all about 3,932,829 times. “Tinkerbell and the Lost Stone” captured my heart.
To summarize, Tinkerbell is given a large task, to build a sceptor that will incase a moonstone. She is entrusted care for the moonstone while she builds. Basically a moonstone is a stone of the moon (amazing.right?). Every year the “blue moon” rises and the fairies have to capture the blue moons rays through the moonstone, which creates pixie dust for the entire year. Pixie dust is needed for fairy flight and thus the most essential nutrient for all fairies. In the course of her tinkering, annoyance followed by anger at a friend, the moonstone breaks. She works really hard to repair it, but it is irreperable.
Just remember friends, I am a sleep deprived crazy mom of toddlers–I can find connections in the most bizarre of places. Its a special gift reserved for those of us going insane as a way to keep our sanity. Bizarre as it may seem, (and completely embarrassing), I found myself deeply connected to Tinkerbell. I understood her plight.
You see, four weeks last January, life looked a little different for us. Our friends, a family of six, moved in with us. Life had thrown them something awful and wrapped it up in more pain, loss, and devastation no one should have to endure.
Ultimately, everything culminated in the loss of livelihood and home. Life wasn’t playing fair, people weren’t playing nice. Four children, 2 adults on the street in less than 12 hours time.
It feels both like yesterday and forever ago.
Those few weeks required constant connection with Jesus. Faith wasn’t just an idea–it was living and breathing.
It had legs, arms, stomach, and heart. Our daily life caught up in Jesus’ master plan. We could feel it.
We left these four weeks wrung out and worn thin, and yet fully aware of God’s hand in all of it.
We took a risk. We hadn’t let them down, they ultimately hadn’t let us down. But, even with assistance and logging hours–their situation couldn’t be mended. It resulted in them moving out-of-state where employment could be mustered and were fresh starts could somewhat be made. But it wasn’t ideal, it wasn’t the answer to the prayer we had been praying.
Sometimes life is like that. So we prayed and we moved on….well…we tried.
After those four weeks-we were shattered; like the moonstone we were broken into fragments, pieces held together, but not the same. Never the same.
We felt barren and lifeless-completely unusable for the purpose intended.
Keep trackin with me here….
Tinkerbell didn’t give up. She went on a balloon ride to a broken ship to find answers. And then with the encouragement of a best friend, a group of rats chasing her down, and without any time left she had to let the moonstone be fragmented.
We too traveled on (not on a balloon ride but in a 1987 creeper van); hoping that God would give direction in our calling. We knew he was going to use this time as a time of learning and growth and he often does in the desert places.
Psalm 107: 4-9 says, “Some of you wandered for years in the desert,
looking but not finding a good place to live,
Half-starved and parched with thirst,
staggering and stumbling, on the brink of exhaustion.
Then, in your desperate condition, you called out to God.
He got you out in the nick of time;
He put your feet on a wonderful road
that took you straight to a good place to live.
So thank God for his marvelous love,
for his miracle mercy to the children he loves.
He poured great draughts of water down parched throats;
the starved and hungry got plenty to eat.”
We too have received encouragement from friends and family, experienced a group of rats chasing us (I’ll save that story for another day), and we let ourselves be fragmented hoping that brokenness would move us to where we hoped we were going.
And then, lately, we have felt drops. Slow methodical drops of life-giving rain.
Uncomfortable movement and stirring.
Peace and silence-turning to the sounds of the rush of water.
Tinkerbell realized that the fragments actually produced prisms and magnified the moons rays more than the moonstone in its hardened original state.
I think I am catching on.
Our hearts magnify Christ’s love more out of of the things he uses to break our hearts. The ruined dark and hurt places in our world, should, could, and need to break us. From that brokenness, Christ stirs us and calls us to mending. He leaves us fragmented and reliant on Him so that He is better reflected and uses it to move in the healing of his people.
“If you are generous with the hungry
and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out,
Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness,
your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight.
I will always show you where to go.
I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places—
firm muscles, strong bones.
You’ll be like a well-watered garden,
a gurgling spring that never runs dry.
You’ll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew,
rebuild the foundations from out of your past.
You’ll be known as those who can fix anything,
restore old ruins, rebuild and renovate,
make the community livable again.” (Isaiah 58:10-12)
Of this I am certain–fragmentation and brokenness is still beautiful, perhaps even more so.
Broken places are where Jesus is found.
He is found in the gathering of neighbors, in the service to the needy.
He is found in the worship of friends, and in the risk-takers.
He is growing, us and stretching us and is taking us on a BIG journey to the places that have broke our hearts, he’s not letting us remain the same or go back to who or what we were.
So were asking for thousands and millions of prayers.
Pray for us as we go to the empty places, the dark places, and the lonely hearts to whom we sit with and mourn with and for.
Pray for the risky, pray for the uncomfortable, pray for the depth, and the perseverance, pray for the hearts of those dark places we go, pray for restoration, pray for renovation.
Pray that this community is full of rain which leads to life.
And pray that when life is sometimes “like that” and it moves and heads in a direction different from ours that we remain broken, held together by strength of the one who is stronger than all of it because was once barren and lifeless as a dry river bed, is now growing full of raging water. This last season felt unreasonably dry, but we are recognizing that it was part of the desert we were intended for. We had to pass through to learn, to grow, to live broken and to learn to stay faithful–even when it felt barren. And now, we move, we do, we say, we act on, and we head out. We’re about to enter the rapids, and these are the broken places exactly where he has called us.