Monday, May 20, 2013


Remember that silly song by Billy Ray Cyrus?  (Bet you're going to be annoyingly humming it in your head all day now…)

OK, so now I want you to forget that silly song.

Let's talk about aching, breaking hearts.  I know what that feels like.  And I know you do, too.

Sometimes life just hurts – a lot.

And our tender hearts feel like they are breaking into a million pieces.

I'm feeling this way right now.  Oh, so weighed down by the travails and troubles of living.

No pity party – just a heavy dose of reality lately.

My *daughter heart* is aching.  It's been really hard watching my parents in their downhill slide.  Dad is sliding so much faster than Mom.  And it hurts.  It just really hurts.

I am painfully realizing that there's still a little girl inside of me that doesn't want to grow up.  I don't want to be the *top dog*.  I don’t want to "parent" my parents.  It's hard…and it hurts.

I ache to see my parents ache.  To see their bodies grow painful, to watch their minds grow feeble and their steps grow slow.

I hurt for the unresolved issues that haunt me from my childhood.  A good childhood, yes.  But none of us grows up unscathed.

I must forgive my parents for who they weren't, and for who they can't be now. Just as I need to be forgiven for the many things I did to bring heartache to their lives – and the many failings I have had as a mother.

It is time to accept what is…

But, the reality of now is hard…and it hurts.

My *mother heart* is breaking.  It's been really hard learning to let go. To watch my sons as they sometimes struggle to live life.   This is a tough season in each of their lives right now.  Identity-seeking, future-planning, relationship-sorting.

I miss happy faces – and simple problems with simple solutions.

Sometimes I long for the days of scraped knees and spelling tests.  For the "little" anxieties of life the ones that I had some control over.

Now I watch from the sidelines in many ways.

And when either of them aches, my heart breaks.

I've heard it said, "A mother is only as happy as her saddest child."

Oh yes.

My *me heart* is aching, breaking too.  This past year brought many changes to my life.  Leaving a place that I had known for almost 29 years was difficult, to say the least.

Friendships changed, routines got altered, security took a big hit.

Life lessons – and faith lessons – have been learned.

But it’s been hard…and it hurts.

I've been having terrible insomnia lately.  The last two nights have been perfect examples:

Night #1 – asleep at 11:30, up at 1:30 – awake until 4:30.
Night #2 – asleep at 3:00, up at 6:00 – for good.

I'm so tired of staring at the ceiling in a darkened room.  I'm so weary of the quiet that is too quiet.  The silence of being alone, and feeling like everyone in the world is asleep but me.

The more I try to relax, the more tense I get about relaxing.

And then, the thoughts come.  The ruinous ruminations.  The crushing cares.  The aching, the breaking.

Often, all I can muster in the wee hours of the night is a gut-wrenching cry:

"Lord, I hurt!"

Sometimes I wonder – where is God in all of this?

Does He hear?

Oh yes, I know He does.

Does He care?

More than I’ll ever know.

You see, He has a Son's aching heart.  He has a Father's breaking heart.

He has a heart that hurts like mine.

For He remembers what He created.  He misses the happy faces of Eden.  He longs for the restoration of His perfect world.

He has a heart – much bigger than mine.  Filled with an unfathomable love that I doubt I'll ever fully understand.

Yes, He provided the ultimate cure for the aching, breaking heart.  (Thank goodness for that!)  But hearts are still broken while we live out our lives.

And sometimes, my achy breaky heart wonders:

God, where are You in all of this?

Let me tell you – HE. IS. RIGHT. HERE.

Right next to me, through it all.

I honestly don't know how I could live a day of my life without the sure knowledge of His unchanging character and His constant Presence.

Life is hard…and it hurts.

But God is bigger.

I am the light of the world.
Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness.

"And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.

May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully.

Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think."  

(Ephesians 3:18-20)

What is breaking your heart right now?  What is causing you heartache?  How do you need to feel God's love?

Linked today with:


BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. It sounds like you and I are in a similar stage of life--enduring menopause, parenting parents but benched as a parent to our children, hair thinning and bottom blossoming--facing some not-so-fun stuff. It really helps me to visit the blogs of other Christians who are going through the same struggles. I need their encouragement.
    For my insomnia, I get up and go downstairs and make a cup of tea. I spend some quality time with God and then write or read a bit. I have found that fighting it just stresses me, so I try my best to make use of the time as quietly as possible--just because I can't sleep I try not to keep Dick awake as well.
    Pam at 2 Encourage

  2. I can hear your achy breaky heart beating in this one, Sharon. From one who lies in a similar bed and stares at a similar ceiling, I understand more than I can say. I even understand the sliding parent part as I watch my mother get physically weaker ever day. It's hard to see her push a walker. And then, I understand it because she is all we have left. We lost all three other grandparents, both of our dads WAY too soon.

    It goes without saying that I understand the mother's heart too. We are, indeed, only as happy as our saddest child.

    I love your reminder of the deep, deep, love of God and how big He is. It's the anchor that holds this ship more than I can say.

  3. Prayers for you. Tis is indeed a tough season of life. So many things need fixing and we cannot do it alone. Luckily God knows. He sees. He cries with you when there is pain. I know you will have a ministry after going through this with your loved ones.

  4. Although I've had seasons of insomnia, I can't say that I've experienced the things that currently aches your heart. But this heart as aches of it's own for sure. Watching and waiting for manifestation of God's promises. May we each continue to cling to the one who heals all hurts.

  5. This was a very honest and touching post, Sharon.
    I remember well the months, years even, leading up to my mother's death, how she suffered. I have regrets about not living closer to her and helping more, but I was there when she needed someone to remind her about the promise Jesus made to her about never leaving nor forsaking her...that He would be there with her.
    And I remember many good conversations I had with my Father in Law before his death...He had found the Lord late in life too.

    And I totally know what you are going through with your grown children! Oh how simple it was when they were little...a bandaid and a hug solved most problems :)

    But I also know the value we have in this 'middle life' phase...It is slowly unfolding day by day...You have this wonderful time where you are able to see more from God's perspective, having lived a more 'rounded' life by now...playing so many different roles in life by now...It brings us so much closer to God, and makes our hearts fuller somehow.
    The 'little girl' in you must be listened to as well...climb up into Father's lap and take his comfort and rest there often.

    You now have the opportunity to pray more deeply for your children...remember how Jesus said..."when you are weak, I am strong."...This includes when we are helpless to do anything to fix or change a situation...this is when Jesus is strongest working on behalf of our children...instead of you working as their mother in order to manage their lives.
    Remember, God has no grandchildren!
    ~Blessings and Love~

  6. Dear Sharon,

    Thank you for sharing in this open way, I hurt reading this, feeling for you, relating to much of it and realising I am well on the way to being that ageing parent.

    Sending you love and hugs and thoughts and prayers

  7. How would we manage without Jesus holding our hand and leading us through the valleys to the mountain tops

  8. Maybe some of us should throw a 'sleepless slumber party'!! I've stared at another ceining more nights than I've wanted to, and I hear the hurt in your words. I think most of us have either been there, are there, or will be, maybe again! It's that thing called life, and it is not particular in who it hits. Sometimes these times in life seem so long that they called actually be called a 'season' of life.

    Yet... as you always do, your bottom line and finishing words bring it all right back to THE ONE who is with us in it and changes the seasons for His purposes. He is doing that in yours Sharon. I'm not saying one thing that you don't already know and speak, on every one of your blogs.

    Still... it hurts. I get that. HE gets that. Thanks for always knowing who you are and who He is. Your words minister!! No wonder they call you a "Warrior"... :)


  9. Now Sharon this is something I can so relate too you would not believe. And with our parents - we all go thru it. It is not easy, but you will make it - after of course - you learn a whole bunch of lessons. I will pray. Just keep asking for Jesus to be with you.

    I have achy breaky heart over my son. I loved this and it is true :

    " I've heard it said, "A mother is only as happy as her saddest child."

    Love, sandie

  10. I love you sis, and your beautiful, precious heart. I am so very sorry that your heart is aching right now, but I understand. More importantly, our Father understands. When I took care of my momma, I felt the same way. If not for God carrying me through, would never have made it. Praise His holy name.

  11. Hi Sharon,
    I pray the Lord to give you peace and comfort as you go through this. I know what you feel with your parents. My dad is already dead and my mom is in her 90's. It sure is hard.

    A few years back, within two days I was laid off from a job I loved and my first wife passed away. Oh did that hurt. But I can testify that God was with me every step of the way. I would like to share with you a passage from Scripture which I held dear to my heart during this time.

    We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)

    May God bless you,

  12. HI Sharon....My heart hurts for you and for your parents too. I think we all talk so much about getting but life is really all about losing....and letting go. The hardest thing is to watch someone you love hurt. Will pray for you be strong and brave and know that He's holding you tight through all this. What speaks to me most through your post today is your amazing love for your parents. That love is why you hurt so much. 'Cause it's real. Stay strong. Sending tons of hugs....and also prayers.

  13. Like you, I feel a similar weight in my heart, Sharon. For me, it's all about the many changes taking place in our family. A move. Two older boys graduated and moving to Raleigh, NC, to being their new lives as grown men. One struggle after another. In isolation, better handled. Thrown collectively at me in one moment? Well, there are many days when I want to collapse.

    May God grant us both the grace, comfort, strength, and joy of heaven to live these days victoriously with our eyes cast to the horizon believing in his more that is to come.

    Blessings and peace, sister.

  14. I think that you have expressed the feelings that we all go through at some time(s) in our lives. I can relate to what you shared, and have found that there is only one antidote to the darkness - praise and worship. It never fails to lift my heart and to refocus my attention on this awesomely faithful God who loves us more than we could ever imagine!

  15. This brought tears to my eyes. I can relate as I know probably everyone who ever lived can. Your conclusions are right on. How do people go on without this hope? There are so many who do not have it. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  16. I hurt, too. In similar ways and in different ways. I'm so sorry for your pain. I'm praying for God to comfort you, for Jesus to wrap His arms around you and give you restful sleep and peace.

  17. Really needed this today, Sharon. Hurting heart and head from far too many tears as I work through the end of a rough school year with many questions as to my future plans on the table. My show is next week - if you go to my blog there is link to see it live online. I had to take a part as well as my writing and directing responsibilities. It's been a stressful production time - and such a deep work striping me of me . . . I so know what you are writing about here. Thanks for the encouraging words - He is holding me through it all.

  18. Dear Sharon
    As I was reading your words, silent tears filled my heart. I am also 50 and understand you heart you want to share through your words of uncertainty. My father passed away about 8 years ago and it was so hard. Yet, not for a moment did I grief alone! Sharon, Dietrich Bonhofer once wrote that you can kiss your loved ones and friend goodbye, but there always lives a world in you where you carry them close to your heart all the time and that is the world that measures your feelings. Thank you for opening up your heart and allowing us a peek into your pain. Praying that your sleep will improve!
    Much love

  19. Feeling with you, Sharon. Thanks for your honest sharing. How encouraging to read the words of this caring community we blog with! May you feel strengthened and as night falls, may your sleep be deep and sweet. I, too, have had some hard-to-fall-asleep nights lately. He is so close, and keeps singing over me, even if he doesn't release the slumber. Maybe it's about just being with him and getting to know him better in those quiet hours when I wouldn't otherwise choose to 'hang out' with him. :)
    I guess maybe I've actually prayed for you in one of those eyes-wide-open wee hours, for I ask him to bless others who may be waiting for the sleep to come.
    I know he will be faithful to you in all you are bearing right now. He loves you!


"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)