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Every time I hear the word “breakup,” images of Ben and Jerry’s, sappy movies, and a large supply of tissues come to my mind. Because let’s face it: breakups are hard and ice cream is delicious…. That being said, I think that it is time to start looking at breakups in a bit of a different light. Sure, sobbing, crying, and blowing your nose into your friend’s penis pump sleeve are all okay… unless your friend isn’t okay with you blowing your nose into their sleeve.

BUT  I think that a lot of people overlook the beauty that lies in this brokenness. A bible verse that I have been meditating on a lot lately is psalm 34:18 which says plain and simply “God is close to the brokenhearted.” It does not say that he immediately fixes all of their problems and takes away every feeling of hurt or betrayal; it says that he is close to them. So many people feel like God is only present when good things happen to them and that he doesn’t care about their problems.

It is even easy to feel abandoned by him in these parts of our lives. We feel like He doesn’t care about our loss or our happiness because he would do something to stop this from happening if he did. But this is not the case.

Feeling rejected by someone, whether we were dating that person or not, is a deep hurt that hits us right in the center of who we are. It is followed by a lot of thoughts like “Is there something wrong with me?” or “If someone that close to me didn’t like who I am, then who will?” We feel like we need to change things about ourselves so that this vulnerability and hurt we feel will never happen again. We begin to harden ourselves and it becomes easy to stick to surface level relationships with others, even our closest friends. We believe that we need to always be independent and not burden others with our “feelings.”

While isolation may keep out hurt, it will also keep out love. Jesus knew this even as he was dying on the cross. He was abandoned by 11 of his 12 apostles… The men that he had been with for so long and that he had shared so much with literally left Him to die. And he was the son of God… If anyone understands rejection, it’s Him. And yet, as he hung there, he gave everything that he had left to the one friend who was still with him. He gave his own mother, his very heart, to this friend. We are called to model this behavior at our darkest moments.

At the times when it is hardest for us, we need to be open to His love. Like Jesus, we need to be accepting of the kindness of others and be willing to give of ourselves even when it hurts … And like His apostle, we need to accept Jesus’ gift of his mother to us. Mary is one of the greatest gifts that the Catholic Church possesses. We are so blessed to have her as a mother and find comfort in her maternal compassion. While it may feel like it, breakups are not the end of the world. They are an opportunity to let God and others love us. We need to take these times and use them to build relationships instead of walls.

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