Parker Palmer writes “Wholeness does not mean perfection: it means embracing brokenness [embracing feeling fragmented] as an integral part of life. ….wholeness need not be a utopian dream… we can use devastation [and mistakes] as a seedbed for new life.” It isn’t by taking away the brokenness or fragments it is by experiencing the fragments and finding God’s strength inside of the fragmentation and the brokenness. Paul spoke of this in terms of being “transformed by the renewing of your minds” (Romans 12:2) and “Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 2:5)

Healing (another word for wholeness) comes when we somehow voluntarily choose to trust the daily paradox of life and death, wholeness and brokenness, as the two sides of everything (this is contemplative / nondual thinking). We can walk “the way” of welcoming fragmentation, brokenness, disappointment and self-doubt, by “suffering” the full truth of reality. Our salvation is a willingness to hold—and transform—the dark side of things instead of reacting against them, denying them, or projecting our anxiety elsewhere. This is the Good News of the cross. Jesus held wholeness and brokenness. Without such a willingness to hold the very real tension of paradox, most lives end in negativity, blaming, or cynicism. Holding does not necessarily mean fully reconciling. It is indeed a “suffering” of reality which implies some degree of patience, humility, and forgiveness. This is experiential spirituality; you experience salvation in life not after life. A flower grows in the brokenness.

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