Brokenness and all...
Updated: Oct 25, 2018
Hearing a new song on my alarm a few days ago led me to a new worship group: All Sons and Daughters. In listening to their live album this morning, I was struck by the lyrics to their song Brokenness Aside. The song repeats the following:
'cause I’m a sinner, if it’s not one thing it’s another, caught up in words tangled by lies. But you’re a Savior. And you take brokenness aside and make it beautiful.”
Ponder that for a moment, before reading on. Let it sink it...
In our mundane, ordinary life - when we walk into a store to purchase an item - we naturally look for the item with the best quality, in the best condition - even down to finding the box with the least marks and dents. Not one of us would walk into a store and find a mangled, broken mess of an item that we are looking for and purchase it - thinking we could make it work. That is, unless we are looking to get the item for a deep discounted rate because the item is open box, or damaged in some unfaltering way.
How humbling to think and know that God longs for an unrestrained relationship with you and I, and when He finds us (or rather we find Him) - we are a broken, mangled mess. And yet, He pursues our hearts, none the less. Even in the state we’re in - His love for us and His vision of who we are in Jesus Christ, makes His choice simple. He is not the least bit hesitant to voluntarily give His Son to hang on a tree, to be humiliated and killed in the most gruesome way, in order to purchase our broken hearts, at full price! Some may even venture to say, overpriced. Yet, He would not agree.
God's desire to walk in relationship with us is unaffected by our brokenness.
God sees beyond our brokenness and Jesus' death covers every damaged piece of us.
Our brokenness does not alarm Him.
Our brokenness does not deter Him from death.
Our brokenness does not delay His fulfilled promises.
Our brokenness does not separate us from His love.
Our brokenness does not hinder our personal relationship with Him.
Our brokenness does not eradicate our right to be His children.
Our brokenness is simply part of us, as a fallen man. It is part of our story - ironically, it is the part of our story that God will use. BUT there is one thing that can deter, delay, separate, hinder or eradicate us from our gracious Heavenly Father, US. Our choice to let our brokenness define us rather than God. Our choice to remain broken, rather that accept God's sacrifice. Our stubbornness to hold a tight grip to ourselves rather than to His purpose.
We see this with the Israelites when they did not listen to Moses and did not see God was trying to rescue them because they could not see past their own brokenness. (Exodus 6:9) A number of times the prophet Ezra describes "broken faith" as faith hindered because of sin. (Ezra 10) The greatest threat to our salvation is our sin, but the greatest opportunity for God is our brokenness.
David revives us in the Psalms, transcending the mindset of the people to forthcoming victory. You see, until Christ came and died, physical (and unending) sacrifice was the only way to cleanse oneself to be worthy of God's presence. But David says in Psalm 51:16-17 that God will no longer despise our brokenness, because a broken spirit, and a broken and contrite heart is His desired sacrifice.
God is the one who intentionally pursues you, finds you damaged, but does not see you as defective.
He sees the version of you, complete, repaired and whole - the version after He finishes with you. He sees you as more valuable than your “perfect” version of yourself. He looks at you - with all of your mess - and sees that you are the better choice than the untainted, unused version.
Because those pieces that are broken, are the very places He knows He can be exalted. The areas that we are tainted, He knows we are weak - and His strength will resound. Those situations where we have been used and abused, He sees our desperation - and He knows we will respond to His love. Our brokenness gives opportunity to our submission, surrender.
In Psalm 119:67 David states "Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word." Our brokenness brings us to a place where submission is possible and surrender is positive. A refreshed perspective that graciously guides us to obedience. As our ultimate example, Christ, when brutally afflicted and broken leading up to the cross, demonstrated obedience in brokenness and because of His example, we see how God can use us in our brokenness.
God values our brokenness because where we are broken - His grace will be evident. Those are the places he will make us beautiful. These are the very places that he plants our passions and our purpose. From those places ... he will use us.
What areas do you feel damaged? Do you feel bruised and unusable? If you do - reflect on this fact today: God is pursuing you, damaged and broken, and has already paid full price for you. He has big plans for you.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans for peace and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. - Jeremiah 29:11
These words are intended for you, just as they were intended for the exiles. The word "plans" here is the word machashabah in Hebrew. Defined as Intentions, thoughts and purpose. He knows the intentions He has for your life, He thinks of you often, and he has a good, good purpose for your future ... Brokenness and all.