The Morning Pages: Writing Broken yet Beautiful

The Kaleidoscope Effect

By: Deborah Whtie Dove

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”  ― Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Today I am surrounded by exquisitely beautiful people, and most of them do not even realize how much their brokenness has transformed them from the inside out. Like discovering pearls hidden within oyster shells, my greatest joy comes from listening to their life stories and helping them see beyond the "spots, stains, and wrinkles" to the pure, spotless daughters of God they truly are.

For over two decades I have done this for other people, and now I'm only beginning to create my own self-portrait, as seen through God's eyes of Love. God's eyes are like looking through a kaleidoscope, which converts brokenness into countless mosaics of beauty and delight.

Rest and writing, for me, has become a sacred ritual. I love to see the “beauty for ashes” promise appear before my eyes.

God doesn't promise us a life free of suffering. In fact, He promises we will be persecuted, misunderstood, and even tortured for our faith, as He was. Broken to bits!

I dislike our violent culture. Its noise grinds into my joints and tendons and jars my spirit. I don't like competition and greed. Violence, arrogance, and lies make me want to flee. I don't understand these things. I'd prefer to simply live my quiet, peaceful life in solitude.

And yet I've discovered bits and pieces of these hateful things reside in me, more than I want to know.

I find I cannot change myself, no matter how hard I try. So I asked God to give me eyes to see as He sees, ears to hear as He hears, and a voice to speak His words. And that's when the shaking and shifting began.

Like a porcelain statue, the world of illusions shattered around me, some of the shards piercing my soul. Pain inside and pain outside – no-nonsense sentinels alerting me to the toxic waters I had been swimming in, endangering my soul.

That's the prayer that turned the kaleidoscope.

If it weren't for the pain, I would have conformed. I might have fit in, yet I would have lost my soul and missed embracing the mystery of real life. I had to place my life on the altar and allow God to kill me – that part of 'me' that was struggling to fit in with the world, even while functioning as a professional leader inside the church walls. If I hadn't been pushed to the edge, I doubt if I would have taken the leap, but this New Testament verse really challenged me:

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. – Roman 12:1-2   (bold mine)

This defies most of what I learned in the Game of Religion.

So I'm not playing The Game anymore. The game of getting ahead. Of being the one in control. Of appearing righteous. Of looking like I have it all together. Of being nice and quiet and polite and submissive and anything else that causes me to put on a mask or a coverup to hide my personal blemishes.

I am broken. I am a misfit. And I'm okay with that. I'm on the way Home.

This journey that I call "On the Way Home," began many years ago when I began awakening in the middle of the night. In those quiet, dark hours, with notebook in hand, I would snap on the closet light after shutting the door and simply write whatever came to mind. It didn't matter what words tumbled out. I just wrote and wrote and wrote.

Sometimes I'd start with a question. Other times I'd record a dream I'd just had. And usually after 2-3 pages I would glean some kind of answer. Sometimes I would even sound like a love letter. Sometimes it arrived on the melody of a song or the whisper of a prayer. The words scribbled hastily in my notebooks carried me through for th enext 24-hours of changing diapers, cooking and cleaning, and all the happy but exhausting chaos of a busy home with toddlers.

Establishing a place of rest is an act of war. Resting and writing in the middle of chaos is an act of violence against injustice and oppression.

Many people, simply by having the courage and discipline to write in the morning stillness, even if the days and nights are chaotic, have found it to be a gift that restores beauty to their souls, even creating beauty from the ash heaps of their lives.

So here's your writing prompt: Embrace solitude and silence by sitting still for six minutes. Move your pen on paper. Scribble if you want. Ask a question. Write anything. Just the act of moving your hand on physical paper (try not to use electronics for this) helps to stir the soup pot in your head.

Now, let the words flow freely, without editing or questioning or commenting…  And do it again and again, whenever you wake up in the middle of the night, whenever you feel blocked or worried or anxious. Whenever you feel good. Whenever!

These pages speak to me even years later and are food for my soul! I hope you enjoy this practice as much as I do!


Contact me     Kind Words from Readers     What I Believe   My Story

With all my love,


Hi, I'm Deborah White Dove. Yes, it's my pen name, and it was given to me by a blind man who shyly whispered it to me in a Divine encounter. Yes, it's my real picture… just an ordinary selfie in my backyard. 

I live with my family in the mountains, surrounded by ancient forests, pure streams, and mighty rivers. I work at a local grocery store to earn my living. My earthly needs are simple as I try to let my inner child lead me, instead of me trying to be what the world says I should be and do.

My kingdom of God career is a Heart Scribe. I love to write from God's heart and have been recording His living Word for the past three decades. It's brought me so much beauty, joy, peace, and happiness! 

I love to inspire trauma survivors to write their life stories, unearthing the treasures of their past and sowing them into the future. We dip our pens in blood and write the pain away… as God has shown me how to do, in the company of supportive friends and family. We are writing ourselves into a better world and it's the most exciting place to be!

Copyright © 2017 Heart Scribes, All rights reserved.   For reprint permission or for any private or commercial use, in any form of media, please contact me. 

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Linda Honea December 11, 2013 at 9:32 am

I love the kaleidoscope too!  When we look at the wrong end of the tube, it is just a jumble of broken colored pieces.  But with the correct viewpoint (Father's) we see beauty, ever-moving, ever-changing, all pieces necessary, beauty.

thanks for the 'visual' this morning!
Always love, Linda


Susan Schiller December 11, 2013 at 2:17 pm

Perspective is so critical, isn’t it?

Thanks so much, Linda 🙂


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