Broken Things, Mess-Ups and the Word of the Week

It was a week of lessens learned from broken things and mess ups.

My dear friend Cynthia had mentioned a quote that meant a great deal to her months ago, and I asked my sister, Shirlee, to create it in calligraphy.  As is her practice, she went over the top and made a beautiful work of art with these words:

“She took the leap and built her wings on the way down.”

I searched for the perfect frame to send it to Cynthia; it wasn’t a Christmas present, just an “I love you gift” – but I was so excited to carefully package it, imagining how it would touch her heart.

It did.  She sent me the loveliest thank you message.

But didn’t tell me until weeks later that it arrived smashed to smithereens.

She’s nice that way, knowing how excited I was to surprise her and knowing how disappointed I would have been that it didn’t show up in pristine shape.

But the rest of the story resonated with me as a lesson for the year’s end and new one to begin.

Cynthia went in search of a new frame to replace the broken one, and stumbled serendipitously upon a shadow-box with sparkly accents and room for the feather on the piece to truly show.  When she sent me the photo I could see:

It was meant to be.

IMG_3726It wasn’t what I intended or envisioned, but it ended up exactly as it should have been.

So I filed that away in my “Hmmmmm….” drawer and ran smack into a professional dilemma.

I marketing brochure I had instructed the designer to set up a certain way went to press and was instead COMPLETELY different dimensions than I had instructed.

I kvetched, moaned, grumbled and had this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach, knowing that the larger size meant a bigger price tag – one that was over the approved budget.

It was Christmas eve, but I had to talk to my boss and get it over with.

His response?

I think it was meant to be a bigger size.

Meant to be.

There were those words again.

I am a perfectionist in many ways, and hopefully not annoying ones.  I am gleeful when it comes to nailing the details of work and creativity.  I love to envision a task and carry it out as planned, making it come to life!

Sometimes, despite my best efforts, it ends up something entirely different.

And I think the Holy Spirit is trying to tell me (and it turned out to rhyme):

When I have done all that I can, there may be more that’s not my plan.  Perhaps a fail is the only way to make entrance for the Divine’s part to play.  In that truth I can rest and know not to fret at the unplanned turn in the road. Not every outcome is up to me…

Sometimes some things are meant to be.

There have been much harder fails and breaks in my life than a frame or a work project. But when I look back over my shoulder, they all worked out as they were meant to.

My friend Renee has taught me many things, including Yiddish words!  And the one that describes the lesson learned this week is:  Bashert.  It means “meant to be” or “destiny.”

So while my take on the “Question Mark” word of last week was that “I am the CEO of my own life and the heroine of my own novel” (which I do believe is true), it was balanced by this life lesson that it’s not ALL on my shoulders.

There is a Power at work, greater than I, who can work all things together for good, fix my fails, improve upon my best laid plans and give me the peace of “bashert.”

Which is a perfect prelude to our new WOW to end 2015 and begin 2016:

When you think of your own healing, know that the broken things and mess ups can, in time, look like beautiful detours on the path to what is meant to be.

Much love to you, and thank you for taking these journeys with me in 2015…



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