I recently learned an important lesson from someone very special to me: beauty can come from brokenness.

“Here,” she said jokingly, placing a red, plastic shard into my hand. It was a piece of her damaged tail light. We had been talking about how a careless driver clipped the corner of her Ford F-150, denting the fender and cracking the big lens.

“Aww. Thanks!” I said in mock appreciation. I had no idea then that her funny gesture was about to teach me one of life’s deepest truths.

We waved at each other after she backed her truck out of my long driveway. I stared after her. Then she drove off, and I stood outside for a few minutes, holding the shard up to the sun and watching as the light made it sparkle.

I bet I can make something out of this, I thought. That was all the creative part of my brain needed. Ideas immediately flowed, inspired by something I believed she and I both had in common—the need for beauty from brokenness.

Later that day, I asked a coworker who creates resin jewelry to make the shard into something I could wear. Leaving it at home would only benefit me, but by wearing it I could share its message with others.

“What is it?” people ask me.

“A piece of broken tail light.”

“Why would you use that as a pendant?”

I hold it up so the light shines through once more. “Because of what it represents—that beauty can come from what was once broken.”

“That’s beautiful,” they say.


In one of his books, author T. Scott Mclead wrote: “You had to break, to be unbroken. In the brokenness, I had found that which was unbroken. That which was perfect, and beautiful and complete.”

I agree, but I would add this: mending is not something you find or do for yourself. Rather, mending is something you let happen to you. And love is the glue that holds the broken pieces of our lives together. That’s deep…and it’s so true.

Another well-known quote about brokenness goes like this: “God will mend a broken heart if you give Him all the pieces.” I just read an excellent article from Focus on the Family that describes this process. “Every one of us has some sort of brokenness in our past,” the author says. “Perhaps we have grieved from a broken heart, complicated situations, loss of health, or relationships. Whether it’s from choices we have made or circumstances beyond our control, sometimes we find ourselves so profoundly broken that we don’t know how things could ever be restored.” If that describes you, the article is definitely worth a read.

I received two gifts that warmed my heart on that chilly January day. First, I learned that beauty can come from what was broken. And what comes after is always more wonderful than the original. That tail light was functional, even valuable. But it had to be broken so something truly amazing would result. Second, I have a really cool pendant to wear that will always make me think of the beautiful soul who gave it to me.

Thank you, Nicole. You are beautiful.

Brief Project Eden Update

I am making great progress with publishing Planet of Eden, friends! I’ve completed my initial marketing plan, have chosen two publishing platforms, and am now engaged in uploading the manuscript and designing the book layout. If all goes well, I will be way ahead of schedule, meaning you could have an eBook or printed copy in your hands by late spring. Want to stay in the loop? Join my Circle of Edenites by subscribing to this blog.

Well, time to get back to work. Hey…keep being an awesome YOU, okay? Do that and you’ll discover beauty from brokenness all around you. Trust me.