On Alfie and Brokenness

One of my favorite movies used to be Alfie.  I really related to Nikki, the protagonist’s girlfriend.  At one point Alfie says of her, “Well, that’s Nikki.  A beautiful sculpture – but damaged in a way you don’t notice until you get too close.”

This quote has always made me feel a particular affinity for Nikki because I used to feel like those words also provided a description of me.  I used to believe that while my external façade may have been beautiful, that I was irredeemably broken and damaged on the inside.  I thought that my brokenness made me unlovable.

I’m starting to see that this is not true, though.  I may be broken in certain areas, but God has full power to fix those areas and use them for good.  As Ernest Hemmingway said, “The world breaks all of us.  Afterwards, some of us are strong at the broken places.”

I’ve seen that God uses my brokenness as a means to bring me closer to him.  Oscar Wilde expressed this idea in his poem The Ballad of Reading Gaol,

“Ah, happy they whose hearts can break

And peace of pardon win

How else may man make straight his plan

And cleanse his soul from sin

How else but through a broken heart

May Lord Christ enter in?”

Written by Kristen, Refuge Resident