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Binding Up My Messes-by Heidi McLaughlin

Posted: April 28, 2019

Christmas 1992 my first husband, Dick presented me with a precious gift, a new leather Bible. Oh the smell and beauty of this grand book. For twenty-seven years, through the death of both of my husbands, and travelling all over North American and beyond, this treasured book never left my side. It’s highlighted with notes, symbols and dates and I can’t perceive being without it.  

Being hauled around in suitcases, passed around at conferences and thrown into overhead airline bins, over the years my beautiful Bible literally fell apart. Silver duct tape did the trick until December 18th, 2018. 

I quit fighting the inevitable.

I quit fighting the inevitable and took my Bible into a little Book Binding shop on a little side street in Kelowna, British Columbia. The owners were more than eager to help me find a new leather cover. As we passed through the back work area my jaw dropped when I saw hundreds of broken books. Paper, broken spines, lonely leather covers, haphazard chapters were scattered everywhere. Someone’s hopes and dreams lay in pieces, discarded and broken. Yet I knew those books were in there to be bound up and to be re-made like new. I was actually very excited when I saw that process. To imagine that my beloved broken Bible would be made into a brand new leather bound book, one that I will probably have for the rest of my life.

God is the expert book binder of brokenness.

During my 5 KLM vineyard walk later that day God revealed to me that He is an expert at binding up brokenness. He takes the scattered stories of our lives and puts them all together to make something new and beautiful. But here’s the hook. I had to make a choice to take that mess of a Bible, and walk into that Book Binding shop and ask the expert book binder to put it back together for me. And that’s what God wants us to do with my messes, brokenness and all the pieces of my life that are made up of stories and chapters. He wants me to take them to Him so that he can bind them all together to make something brand new and beautiful.

We can’t fix ourselves, we need help.

I could not fix that Bible by myself; I needed help. If I want to experience a new and beautiful life, I have to go to the expert book binder and give Him my brokenness, pain, failures, grief and disbelief so that He can in turn bind it up and make something magnificent out of it. Not just a new and beautiful outside cover.  He wants to give me a new strong spine, with all the stories and chapters bound together so that they are in the right order for the last chapter. “The End” of a magnificent story. 

Is there brokenness you need to let God bind up for you? He’s the expert. You can trust Him. He wants to do it.

Posted in: ask God, brokenness, grief, messes, trust, trust Good

3 responses to “Binding Up My Messes-by Heidi McLaughlin”

  1. Lorena Crocker says:

    Excellent and the secret like you said, is to go to the source that made us that knows us intimately. I am going away with my husband next week for a few days think I will make a special effort to visit the Book Binder.

  2. Arlene knodel says:

    Thank you for always putting a twist on ordinary things that can happen in life. It helps one to take note again and remember that this too will pass. My husband has always been a hard working man and 6 months ago, for no reason he started to lose weight and has lost over 80 lbs. He has had so many tests and everything shows nothing but he continues to lose weight and can not do anything anymore. So was such a blessing to receive this story and read it so that I refocused on what can come out of this as a blessing. When you are in a really low spot and everything looks bleak, even though you trust the Lord Satan still works his way into that valley and make it look bleaker then bleak. I thank God that He has blessed me with knowing you and how He gave you to others as such a blessing. I know this helped me make my day as little brighter and put my mind on the path that it needed to get back on again.

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Arlene, thank you for sharing your story with me/us. God is at work all around us, but hope and peace gets lost in life’s messes. I know! Thank you for your words of encouragement and I’m glad my story lifted you spirits. May you continue to see God’s blessings in the simple and ordinary things of life. That’s where God shows up the best. God be with you!

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