The Broken Teapot

Many have experienced seeing a child knock something valuable off a shelf and watching it fall in slow motion to the floor into small pieces, a teapot for example.  The teapot is shattered into what seems a million pieces on the floor.  You know it was not done on purpose and there is no scolding.  The teapot is just there.  Waiting for you to either throw it away or glue it back together.

 Prov. 15:13 says “A joyful heart makes a cheerful face, But when the heart is sad, the spirit is broken.”  Jay and I have entered the time of being broken and hurt.  We are much like the teapot that is in many pieces. I knew when it came down to it, I would be the one that would be affected the most; it was just a matter of time.  That time is here and how do we handle it?

Jay and I talked last night about suicide.  I know, you think that is so drastic.  Don’t freak out, we are human.  In despair, your mind goes so many places.  He has not thought about it at all.  I, on the other hand, have thought about it several times.  Satan creeps in when we are weak, and I am either crying or sleeping, so he’s got me.  I know I am feeling that way because so much of a big part of our lives has died.  This reminds me of the song the Hurt and the Healer by MercyMe.  Parts of the lyrics are, “Breathe, sometimes I feel that’s all that I can do.  Pain so deep that I can hardly move.”  But the song goes on to say “Jesus come and break my fear, Awake my heart and take my tears, Find Your glory even here.”

I have a mental image of God catching my tears and using them as glue to put the teapot back together, which is me.  There are some pieces He will have to hold in place for a while for the glue to hold and I think He’s holding us in one of those places right now.  But we know there is healing in this time, as much as I don’t see it with my eyes.  But I am claiming Jeremiah 17:14 that says “Heal me, O LORD, and I will be healed; Save me and I will be saved, for You are my praise.”  I know in time we will heal as He puts US back together.  I told Jay last night that it made me angry that I couldn’t just push all this aside and get over it.  (That’s my fighting spirit.) And he said, we’ll never get over this.  He is right and that’s why I cry out to the Lord.  Just stop and think.  Imagine.  Your child.  Gone.  Never to touch, smell, or kiss again.  You can’t.

I’m so thankful that God did not pick up the teapot and put it in the trash, broken and in pieces. His glue is ever-bonding and a joy that we have experienced.  We will experience that joy again and He will fill us up.  There will be no leaks through the cracks of the pot.  But for now, I have to accept that I am broken.  I will learn to heal.  Each day I am going to challenge myself to find something to be thankful for that God in his mercy has given me.  It might be something very insignificant to the public, but to me, it might just be breathing. 

If you have not heard this song Hurt and the Healer by Mercy Me, here are the words that I could speak myself.  I am praying through all of this that God DOES find His glory here and He is honored in all that we do.  Some ask, how can I pray for you? Or how are you doing?  Well, I think I have answered that question well.

The question that is never far away
The healing doesn’t come from the explained
Jesus please don’t let this go in vain
You’re all I have
All that remains

So here I am
What’s left of me
Where glory meets my suffering

I’m alive
Even though a part of me has died
You take my heart and breathe it back to life
I’ve fallen into Your arms open wide
When the hurt and the healer collide

Sometimes I feel it’s all that I can do
Pain so deep that I can hardly move
Just keep my eyes completely fixed on You
Lord take hold and pull me through

So here I am
What’s left of me
Where glory meets my suffering

I’m alive
Even though a part of me has died
You take my heart and breathe it back to life
I’ve fallen into your arms open wide
When the hurt and the healer collide

It’s the moment when humanity
Is overcome by majesty
When grace is ushered in for good
And all the scars are understood
When mercy takes its rightful place
And all these questions fade away
When out of the weakness we must bow
And hear You say “It’s over now”

Jesus come and break my fear
Awake my heart and take my tears
Find Your glory even here

34 thoughts on “The Broken Teapot

  1. Wonderful analogy of the teapot! Keep on fighting!

    Psalm 56:8
    You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.

    When you have a chance, look up lachrymatory in google and learn the history of the tear bottle if you don’t already know it. And then revel in the fact that one day all our tears will evaporate and our period of mourning will be over when we are fully restored.

  2. Lisa, so many of my emails to “my goup” my Sunday School class begins with “I can’t breathe” . And I would say I am only Aunt Donna and then they would remind me that I was more than just Aunt Donna and I would have to agree with them. Sometimes at work I don’t realize what my face looks like and someone would say “oh my whats wrong” thinking something had just happened and I would say why and they would say “the look on your face”. And as Collin said “sometimes I am ok and sometimes I am not”. One minute I can remember something and smile or laugh and another cry. Just cutting the yard………. Not sure if I ever told you but back on Christmas break when Trey was over washing all the cars, I pulled the Honda into the grass and he said “Aunt Donna it will get stuck” and I said “no it won’t we do it all the time” well I wash a car in 15 minutes, not Trey! Well the car sunk about 4 inches in mud and we had to put a board under the tires to get it out. And you know it I GOT THE I TOLD YOU SO’S from him. (and I was concerned about his cold hands) anyway I said “no biggy grass grows back” is what I told him. Now when I cut the grass and step in the indentions the tires made in the yard, sometimes I smile and sometimes I cry. Saturday I cried. Oh how I miss him!

  3. Lisa, I would never pretend to know what you feel, the mere thought of dealing with the loss that you’ve experienced hurts me. I read your blog and all of your FB posts and I ask myself, “how does she do it?” I’ve always admired your faith in God even back in high school. You were a lot like Trey, you stood by your beliefs, you shared your beliefs and you never let anyone take that from you. As teenagers we may not have appreciated any of that then but we certainly do now as adults. Trey has left an impression on this community and others from outside the community that will last forever, a young man so brave, so blessed and so spiritual that even in his last days he knew what he had to do and where he was heading. You and Jay created an amazing young man that eventually touched more lives than either of you could have ever imagined. You know he’s not gone, he left his mark everywhere just like the tire tracks in Donna’s yard. He left tire tracks on a lot of hearts and souls as well… I never met the young man but he left them with me too. I know this doesn’t ease your pain but I thought if you read something positive it might help if for only a few minutes… God Bless you and your family! B

  4. Dear Lisa,

    Thank you for sharing your heart with so many of us! This pain you (and others) are experiencing is so deep and strong that we want it to be gone yesterday! It does not leave so easily, as you well know. Thank God that we have our Lord to hang on to in the midst of this
    devastating time! As the Mercy Me song states so truthfully that, ” a part of us has died, and it
    creates a horrific pain in us, so deep, that it causes us to barely be able to breathe! All we can do is FALL into His arms that are open wide, and allow Him to breathe us back to life,” as only He can do!

    He promises that nothing is impossible with Him, that nothing is to hard for Him, so I am holding Him to these promises in these situations! For the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead, dwells in us, and He will quicken our mortal bodies and bring life and health to us, as we give
    ourselves into His arms.

    As you know the word also says, “Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
    My prayer is that He will show us how to mourn, for I do not think that we really know how, and that He will then bring the comfort that He promises, to each of us, that are in this place.

    May His love & grace, carry you through this time, and may His joy be returned to you, for it is our strength! God Bless!

    Love & prayers to you and your family

  5. I am not sure if you have seen this or not, but thought you may enjoy seeing Bart Millard, from Mercy Me, telling the story behind the song, “The Hurt & The Healer.” It came from his personal
    experience with the death of a family member. I pray that it ministers to you as much as the song does.

  6. Thank you for your precious vulnerability…God will continue to heal your heart as you lay in His arms. And Trey continues to glorify God…All my love and prayers…

  7. I see a book in yours and Trey’s future that will be a balm of Christ on so many hearts. My husbands family lives in Aleppo, Syria and with every bomb dropped and every bullet from an ak47 imagined in his mind striking one of his loved ones is a minute by minute, hour by hour agony. We pray this conflict does not leave them in death so we can touch and hug and be with one another again. As a mother with a son who is aggravated with me at this moment because I’m making him do his homework, I know I’m blessed that he is only a few feet away for me to touch, smell and love on. He is not a world away in conflict, or a galaxy away with Jesus. I hurt for you and Jay and Collin, but I know my hurt cannot even breathe on your pain. But please know that your pain lends your words an honest eloquence that gives us with other worries and concerns a balm that comes from Christ through you, and for that I give thanks. With much love, Lisa Douba Cordova


  8. Thank you for sharing, Lisa! So many times in life we refuse to say how we truly feel and refuse to be transparent. God understands when we hurt and have those human thoughts. Praying for you all and that God will use your life to glorify Him in all that you do. Thanks again for being an inspiration to so many people and know that you are loved.

  9. It breaks my heart to hear you suffering so much. I am so very sorry. No day goes by without many prayers for you and your family. Know that you are loved by many who hold you all up in constant prayer. God is holding you together, and that’s what matters most, right now. I am grateful for the faith, trust and love you have for Jesus. Love, Lee

    Sent from my iPad

  10. Lisa, I’ve not lost a child but when Jr. got killed in our front yard, I remember so many times telling my kids, I don’t know what’s going to happen to us but all we have to do today is breathe. I know that pain for sure. You and Jay are so smart to be honest with each other and share your pain and grief. I never knew that a human heart could hurt until I experienced it but I know your heart really does hurt. As time passes my prayer for your sweet family will continue to be peace and healing.

    I saw a young lady today that had on one of the pray for Trey t-shirts.

  11. I have followed your blog since before Trey passed. I find peace and pain in them. I ache for you, though I don’t know your pain. I am a lucky one. My daughter is a cancer survivor. Thank you for bearing your soul. I pray for your continued strength.
    2 Corinthians 1:9

  12. Lisa- I know it pales in comparison, but after Hurricane Katrina, I remember hearing God’s voice tell me that each day, I should find just one thing that was better than the day before. There were many days that I struggled to find that one thing, but with God’s help, I always did. I continue to pray for peace and understanding for you. You will never get over this, but you will get through it and come out on the other side stronger…

  13. People who have not lost a child cannot know what you are going through; we can only imagine. I just see you and Jay at ballgames, and you have on your “out in public” faces. These faces deceive everyone into believing you two are doing all right. And that is just not the case. The one thing that I remember so vividly from your Caring Bridge posts was the fact that Trey was truly worried that your faith would be crushed if he did not make it. You took the time to assure him that you would not lose faith. The devil is testing that faith now, and as hard as it might be, you and Jay will stand strong and let him know that your God is with you and you will not be defeated. Cry and talk and let it all out, so that you can begin to heal. There will always be that hole in your heart, but try to fill it with memories and love for one another. You have a lot of people pulling for you and who would do all they could to help out. Just ask, but as usual, put your faith in God and He will help you with your loss.

    • Suzaanne, you are right. We do have our public faces on. There is nothing else we can do ;o) I keep coming back to the fact that when someone would ask Trey if he had a prayer request, it would be for us. We will get through this. And I am the happiest when I am with my Collierville family!

  14. Lisa, An email from Sarah Young (Jesus Calling author) this morning asked me for your address so that she could send you her new book on hope that is coming out next month—Jesus Today. I think the publisher is sending it to you. I assume you have access to my email or my blog address thru this comment so you can contact me. Prayerfully for all the Irwins, Dotsy Liles

  15. You have no idea how many times since I began following Trey’s story that I have sat and imagined exactly what you posted here. My precious son. That I waited and prayed for five years for. Gone. So much labor, so much love, all seemingly in vain. Never smell his “i’ve been playing outside” smell, never smooth down his bedhead, never get those late night snuggles. I have tried to imagine it, just like you said. And it is totally overwhelming to the point where I can barely get a breath. So I know what you mean when you say that just breathing can be a challenge. I am so sorry for your brokeness. Please know that many whom you don’t even know are carrying your burden with you, although we can’t carry it for you. When I feel angry and full of regret over the things that have happened in my life, I always seems to come back to the idea that God redeems … everything. That means he gives everything value, even our suffering, and that gives me hope. Not preaching to you, would never do that. Praying for you and much love to you.

  16. Glad He caught a.l the pieces when they fell. The pot He makes may not look like the old one that got broken but it wil be different and beautiful in its own right. He is more than able x

  17. Hi Lisa,

    I have been praying for you and your family for many months. There are so many that don’t know you, yet we count it an honor to pray for you. If you have the opportunity to google ” The Teapot Story” I believe that you can really relate to it. It ministered to me at a time in my life when I too needed healing and help for my brokness. You are not alone. He is holding onto you each step of this journey.

  18. ms lisa i want to just want to tell you what my dearly departed mother(2006) used to tell me whenever we discussed the death of my little brother who passed away from sids at just 7 months old in 1985

    she always used to tell me that she too had thoughts of suicide after his death and that the pain was so great that she wanted to get up and run away from it but she had nowhere to go-except on her knees to the good shepard who knows his sheep

    and she would always say that the ONLY love greater than a mother’s was that of GOD

    ms lisa i cant even imagine what you and jay are going through but i know the ONE who knows your pain and knows all about you and i pray for you and jay and collin everyday-that Jesus will continue to keep you and bless you

    and dearest trey is now,i honesty truly believe,in heaven with Jesus, as well as my mother an my little brother

    cuz even tho i didnt personally know your son i do believe that trey walked and talked wih GOD while he was on this earth and he seemed like a really sweet loving young man

  19. Lisa, You will never know how much your faith and the faith of your precious son has meant to me. I have prayed for yall since the beginning. I want to forward you an email that I received about a precious teenager in the Memphis area who is suffering from anorexia. She is in very poor condition and is in a special hospital. They are strong Christians fighting for the life of their child. This is not something that I can understand, but I feel that you could minister in a mighty way to the mother of this young girl. I am not sure of your email address. I just know the Lord could use you during this dreadful time in their lives. You can send me your email through mine at if you would be able to help them. Peace and blessings to you, Vicki

  20. Lisa,
    Thank you, thank you, thank you for being so real. I’ve been browsing around my normal blogs- Prov 31, A widow’s might, etc and yours…looking for encouragement. And the Lord provided:) I hear everything you’re saying and I know that hurt(though not comparing..well, maybe a little;)) That song has had me in tears many times. I LONG to touch, smell & kiss Kevin again. And I’ve had to explain a few times that I’m not suicidal and it’s just such a longing to be with him again and to be with Jesus. It took me just until a month or so ago to stop expecting to hear the trumpet or something!:) I thought surely Jesus was gonna come back and get me as I longed for! I still wish He would. But I know there is a purpose. Wanted to write a note to say thanks for sharing your heart. It really helped me today. I don’t know at all what it is like to lose a precious baby, but I do know what it’s like to lose a spouse and it. hurts. Praying for you all. Tina

    • Tina, you know what a blessing you have been to our family. Kevin was special and we all loved him. He had a purpose and I believe that purpose was to touch many firemen like he did. We just need to keep praying for each other.

  21. I was standing on the football sidelines Friday, and I am sad to say I saw you and Jay and wanted to speak to you, but I didn’t know what to say. My heart is very sad for you, Jay, Collin and everyone else that was close to Trey. I’m just someone standing on the outside looking in. 4 years ago, my dad and step-mom lost their son, her only child. There are days she can only breath like you said. She longs to see him again. There isn’t a day that goes by I don’t pray for you and my step-mom. It’s not something you will ever “get over”. I can’t stand it when people think that anyone could. I pray that each day your heart will heal.

  22. Lisa, I too think about suicide, but for totally different reasons. My son is a drug addict, and has serious mental issues. I pray for him every day, but often wonder if it is worth even trying any more. It hurts me so badly that he does not recognize what he is doing to himself, nor does he care. I blame myself, even though logically I know it is not my fault. So, I often think suicide would be the best option for me. Then I read God’s word, and also realize I would cause my other family members great pain. So, while I have not lost him from this world yet, I do some what understand how you feel.

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