Brokenness comes in different degrees and forms in our lives. Every experience is different, yet each brings some degree of despair, discouragement, setback, sadness, fault-finding, regret, anxiety, and other myriad emotions that seem to lay one’s tender heart to waste. But in every experience, there’s also healing—healing that requires time, forgiveness, and love unfeigned from the Master Healer.

Healing requires time. If healing seems impossible and your brokenness feels beyond repair, please know that your feelings are valid. Acknowledge the pain. Cry it out. Shout it out if you must. Feel it. Your healing doesn’t have a deadline so don’t rush it. It may take a while and that’s okay. But taking your time to heal doesn’t mean sitting idly feeling sorry for yourself. Of course, there will be days when you just want to stay in bed and be alone but remember that healing requires so much more than the mere passing of time. Take time to feel your feelings but don’t expect time alone to heal your wounds.

Healing requires forgiveness. Forgiveness can mean many things when it comes to healing, it can mean forgiving others or forgiving yourself. In the scriptures, we are commanded to forgive all men, but it doesn’t say you must ‘forgive immediately.’ Sometimes, it is difficult to forgive at the height of your emotions and that’s okay. Often, finding the strength to let go of resentment and bitterness requires processing your emotions, calming yourself down, and looking at the situation through a different lens. All these steps require time. But know that when God commanded us to forgive all men, He knows very well that it is one of the key steps to healing, that forgiveness can bring us peace and widen our ability to feel hope.

It may feel impossible to forgive but through the Savior and His Atonement, it is possible. Cast your burden to the Lord with a humble recognition of your human limitations, that you need His grace as you try to find in yourself the same grace that will allow you to forgive yourself or others.

It won’t be easy. It may take a few tries and questioning if you’re ready to let all the pain go, but when you do you’ll feel lighter, with a limitless capacity to grow and develop into the person you want to become.

Healing requires the love and help of the Master Healer. No matter what you’re going through, healing can sometimes feel like a greater task than you are capable of. You might even feel like you can’t bear it and plead to Heavenly Father to remove the bitter cup from you as Jesus Christ did. The Father responded to His Begotten Son’s pleading by sending an angel to strengthen Him, and He will send help to you: the One who is the Master of Healing, the One who walked the streets of Jerusalem, healing the sick, opening the eyes of the blind to see, causing the lame to walk, and the dead to rise, the One who not only carried the sins of the world but also mankind’s despair, discouragement, and all forms of brokenness, including yours.

Through Christ, your broken heart can be healed, the same way the people in the scriptures were healed. He may not take away your bitter cup, but He will help you to bear it because He knows perfectly how it feels to be broken. His love is sufficient to sustain you as you pick up your broken pieces and slowly build yourself up again. Through the Atonement, you can be assured that He understands the depths of your sadness and hopelessness. You can find comfort that if you come to Him, you can be made whole again.

And when your heart is healed, you will realize that you are stronger, not in spite of but because of having experienced what it is like to be broken. You will feel a deeper capacity to love, empathize, forgive, and comfort those going through their healing journey. You will recognize the many lessons that only brokenness can bring.