Broken hearts, broken relationships, broken down cars… this world is full of brokenness. We throw away broken toys and computers. My iPod is currently giving me a sad face icon and telling me there’s a fatal hardware issue. I keep hoping one day it will simply fix itself and work again, but every time I try to turn it on, it’s still broken. Left in its current state, I’m confident that it will remain broken forever. I’m confident of this because my iPod is helpless to fix itself.
You and I are the same way. We are helpless to fix our brokenness. And often in our Christian life, God works in many ways that break us. He uses persecution, financial hardship, sickness, loneliness and many other trials to break us of our self-sufficiency, pride, arrogance, unbelief and selfishness. He brings trials into our lives to break us of our self-dependence and to conform us to the likeness of Jesus.
Thankfully, God does not leave us broken. He breaks us of these things to restore us and create us as a vessel He can use for His glory. He disciplines us as a loving Father, who longs to see us grow and change. And He promises that this process of discipline and breaking is for the end result of producing fruit.
For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. (Hebrews 12:11-13)
God gives promises to the broken:
- He promises not to reject their prayer. “The sacrifices of god are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, o God, you not despise.” (Psalm 51:17)
- He promises to save them. “The LORD is near to the broken hearted; and saves the crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18)
- He promises joy and gladness as we repent of our sins and look to Him as our hope. “Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice.” (Psalm 51:8)
Prayer: Father, thank you for your love. At times that love can seem harsh and unpleasant to me. But thank you for the promise that when you break me, it is always done from a heart of love and compassion. Thank you for the promise that you are working in me to conform me to your image. Keep me trusting confidently in your care and love, no matter what trial I may face.
[copyrighted, 2009, Emily Schankweiler]