Brokenness: Nothing could’ve prepared me for this

(Image not mine)


It was a regular Thursday, but during the Calgary Stampede week. I was finishing at the office when I get a phone call. My brother’s been hurt. I need to get to the hospital. My sister and Dad were already there. I needed to find Mom. We didn’t have a car as Dad took it. But God provided as Meth came to drive my Mom and I to the hospital.

I saw look in my Dad’s eyes. Heard the sorrow from my Mom and sister. And heard the seemingly casual words from the attending physician. “He’s brain-dead. Please sign here to donate his organs.” (She said more than that, but that’s all I heard.) It was like clawing through a nightmare that you can’t wake up from. I slept, barely, woke….and the same crushing ache gripped me. I’m still not prepared to talk about all the details of that night or the following few days. I barely even let myself remember it…only fragments here and there. And purposely not in order. But I’m sure I can recall everything.

A raw, gaping, gushing hole was torn into my heart and life. The sun shone less brightly…and couldn’t bring warmth. I don’t know how else to describe it but my world changed. Shattered. Shifted. And I, I felt like I was teetering on the edge of a deep, dark precipice. I imagined leaning over, wondering how it would be to fall forward and allow the darkness consume me. But I felt God reach out and tell me that wasn’t the way, but to bring Him my sorrow instead. So for a while, it was like I sat on God/Daddy’s lap as He held and comforted me, a few feet from that cliff.

I thought back to a time where I wondered to myself “Well, I’ve been broken with regards to intelligence, friends, job and relationships….what else could be next? Health? Family? I think I’ll be prepared.

Well. I wasn’t. But, I had gotten to know God more…and I know He loves my brother more than I can humanly grasp. I know God wasn’t being cruel in letting this happen. I know God knows infinitely more than I could imagine. I don’t need to understand everything. I could accept or reject His comfort. I could trust or blame Him. I didn’t know much more than that. Over the next few years of healing, though I don’t think we’ll completely heal on this side of Heaven, I realized a few things more. This wasn’t about God smashing idols. Or asking me if He is enough. This was about whether or not I would be faithful and trust Him. No matter what.

“You give and take away, but I will bless Your name.”

This past weekend was his birthday. He would’ve been 28.
I love you and miss you.

7 responses

  1. I am so sorry for you loss. I lost one of my best friends (like an older sister) a few months ago, and I know what you mean about feeling like you are on the brink of a cliff. Life just doesn’t seem the same after something like that happens. I understand why many people turn to alcohol, drugs, sex, etc., to try and forget the pain of loss. However, God has been faithful to keep me from completely losing it. I don’t know what I would’ve done without Him to keep me grounded even as the world I knew has fallen apart.
    Thanks for sharing your brokenness. It helps us all know we are not alone.

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