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When dreams die, invariably some relationships will die along with them. I’m not sure why that happens, but it was true for me. Though it was hard to see my hopes and plans for the future crumble, that did not compare to the pain of broken friendships.

The storm in my life was not kind; it yanked out the root of relationships. I should have been able to turn to friendships, but instead, I found that the circle of people I trusted became smaller and smaller. And, I gave into the temptation to protect myself through isolation. I began to believe that people were painful.

Because I distanced myself from others, it seemed like it was a bigger battle to let God replant the second root of relationships than to see Him replant that first root of how I felt about myself. (1) I was wary. Was I even capable of finding good friends? Wouldn’t I just mess the whole relationship thing up again? But, God, in His gracious love for me knew that the exposed root of relationships needed to be settled; it was vital to my success. This is the story of how God so personally went about mending my brokenness.

One sunny December day, my husband, Ron, and I took our usual walk in the neighborhood, and I unwittingly revealed to him the extent of my apathy. I was at a point where I didn’t care about people outside my family, and I didn’t even care that I didn’t care. This greatly concerned Ron, and for good reason, because I had always wanted to be involved in ministry. But, how can one minister without first being in relationships?

Two significant things happened shortly after that walk. First, Ron decided to find a healthy church where our family could find refuge. God led us to a place where He was able to heal my heart through Biblical teaching, and where I was able to begin building healthy relationships. Secondly, God solidly replanted the root of relationships by speaking healing, truthful words to me through a friend.

We were visiting some longtime friends, and after dinner and games, we just sat around and talked. As usually happens with this couple, we ended up praying for each other. None of that was a surprise, but what happened next was. After praying, my friend looked up at me and apologized for not being a very good friend, asked us to forgive them and reaffirmed our friendship. It was totally unexpected and not at all what I was looking for from them. I instantly recognized what God was up to. He had set up this encounter to heal this second sacred root of relationships. (2) Those words gave me the confidence to try again.

As with the first sacred root, I’ve stored up some lessons that I can tuck away in my tool box for times when my heart needs mending.


Lesson #1:

Remember not to isolate yourself. This is probably my first reaction to being hurt. The temptation is to believe that it is better just to avoid people because people cause heartache. I need to remember that although wounds come from people, people are also a source of knowledge, wisdom and success.


Lesson #2:

Be careful whom you allow into your inner circle. Since God has replanted this sacred root of relationships, my husband and I have created a list of sorts that contains characteristics of people that we will allow into our inner circle. People in an inner circle are those whom you trust, whom you know will “have your back.” Not everyone belongs in that circle, nor even in the circle outside of that one. It’s O.K. to mentally put people in circles. Doing so provides boundaries.


Lesson #3:

Forgive. Although some relationships may actually die, you can still experience a free heart through forgiveness. Forgiveness is really about you, not the other person. It is not saying that what your offender did was “O.K.” but it is releasing yourself from the pain, bitterness and constant thinking about what happened. Without forgiveness how can we move forward either in repairing the old relationship and/or in beginning healthy, new ones?


Sometimes dreams and relationships die. And, they don’t seem to die peacefully. Quite often, we need God’s healing. Though there are many facets of His healing, quite often He will take us back to our personal “sacred roots,” those unique parts given to us in order for life to have meaning and purpose. Sacred roots in our lives are like tree roots that go way down and anchor us. When roots are exposed as a result of trauma, the tree dies. However, we can ask God to fix what is broken, and He will gather our roots together, replant them and make a stronger, more fruitful tree.

What are the sacred roots that need to be replanted in your life? If you don’t know, ask Him, and… anxiously anticipate.


1. The subject of a former blog, Dreams Die: Part 2 found at:
2. In Dreams Die: Part 2, I defined “sacred root”as those unique parts of a person that God gives each one of us, in order for life to have meaning and purpose.


Feature image Copyright © petarpaunchev / Dollar Photo Club
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