My friend Sara is a Speech and Language Pathologist. She shared with me a concept that she uses with her elementary school friends who have challenges. When they have done something wrong to someone -- a tear -- she encourages them to say they are sorry, but then she also speaks to them about the next step of importance -- “repairing the tear.”
She presents to them a visual of something being torn. Sometimes they are little rips, and sometimes they are big rips, even really big rips, resulting in two separate pieces. When something is torn, it is different. It is not the same anymore.
When they have hurt someone (either physically or emotionally), they need to say they are sorry. They need to express that they will try not to do it again, and then they need to show the person that they are sorry. It may be a kind word, a helpful hand, a note or a picture. Some attempt to do something to “repair the tear” is necessary to show that the words “I am sorry” have meaning and that the one they have hurt has value, as well.
I’ve been thinking a lot about “repairing the tear” and how it applies to all of us. There are tears that we make and tears that are inflicted upon us. There are tears that are short and tears that are long. There are tears that are shallow and tears that are deep. There are tears that can even go straight through our heart. We can feel as if our heart is completely torn in two with all the contents spilling out. There are tears of infidelity, gossip, slander, selfishness, anger, abuse, deception and much more. There are tears from when we are little and from when we are older. There are tears that need some mending and tears that need a long operation of repair. There are tears that are quickly mended, and others that require much time.
Dear reader, where do you find yourself today? Maybe you have torn something and need to humbly take responsibility, repent and move towards repairing the tear. Ask the Lord to go with you and humbly seek out the heart of the one you care for and work to “repair the tear.” He is faithful to guide you as you walk in obedience to repent and change.
Or maybe you have been hurt, and sadly enough, the one who hurt you is not interested in repairing the tear, leaving you feeling as if you are damaged goods. Have hope, dear reader, and be comforted and strengthened in this – the Lord is the master Tailor who can mend and restore any tear. Submit your torn and frayed heart to the hand of God. He will come in and do His work to make you complete again. He will care for you, gently holding you in His hand and bringing the jagged edges of your heart back together, stitch by stitch, grace by grace.