A Blessing in Brokenness
In a society where perfection is praised, especially now through the avenue of social media, we can be easily persuaded that this is how life should be. Everything from our clothing, outward appearance, marriage, children, and homes…the list could go on. We can become so centered on this that we forget that we are fallen and live in a fallen world. There is no cure for this other than the blood of Jesus continually washing over us. For whatever reason, I had always believed that if I was anything other than perfect, I would not be truly accepted by the Lord. Am I perfect, no? Am I flawed, absolutely! I knew God loved me but did He love all of me? Did he love me despite what made me feel shamed, less than, and ultimately, broken? Did he love and approve of me despite the scars that I carried…the scars that I didn’t ask for and the ones I created? But God, in all his excellence and splendor, isn’t drawn to this idea of perfection nor expects it of us. Thankfully, He is drawn to our brokenness, our scars and our mess.
Jesus tells us in John 8:7 to, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her” (ESV). The woman mentioned here had been caught in adultery (Jn. 8:1-11). The passage doesn’t share much detail about her past or present situation. It only states her sin. As she was about to be stoned, God reached out and extended His hand of grace to her. He questioned the Pharisees' motives and turned the heat off of her.
Additionally, consider the woman at the well who had been married several times and was currently living with a man who was not her husband (Jn. 4:4-29). Unlike most women of that time, she went to the well during the afternoon in the heat of the day. Perhaps she did this to avoid the ridicule of her life that might have occurred if she was to draw water at the same time as the other women. I’m sure she had already experienced this and decided she couldn’t handle it anymore. On this particular day we find Jesus, a Jewish man, sitting at the well in the heat of the day, waiting as though He knew that she would be coming. No doubt He was waiting to speak to her and give her hope in the midst of her sin and brokenness.
God is not drawn to us for what is perfect about us but what is broken about us. He’s drawn to our imperfections, our scars, our abuse, our low self-worth, and our shortcomings. He’s drawn to the fears, the anxiety and even the darkness we might face. It is only in a marred vessel can light filter through and shine. Only when we are broken can His light shine through us filling the gaps of our brokenness. It is when the light of Christ shines through us, are we then truly whole.
When Jesus took the loaves and fishes in order to feed the multitude, he broke it in order for it to multiply. The purpose of our brokenness is to advance the Kingdom of God, not just to receive salvation. It’s in our brokenness we effectively build and multiply His Kingdom. It is when we are broken that we can truly feed others and help pull them out of the fire that we have once walked through.
I saw a quote the other day that I knew I had to share with you. It went something like this. God Uses Broken Things Beautifully; Broken clouds pour rain, Broken soil sets as fields, Broken crop yields seeds, Broken seeds give life to new plants. So when you feel broken, be rest assured that God is planning to utilize you for something great! ~Unknown
Remember that old chorus, “Something beautiful; something good, all of my confusion Jesus understood. All I had to offer him was brokenness and strife till He made something beautiful out of my life.”
Whatever our brokenness is today, it was not meant to destroy or lessen our value but just the opposite. God uses the imperfect to perfect His love and grace within us. Our value only increases with our imperfections. Our value is why He went to the cross. He longs to redeem you as His. There is a blessing in our brokenness.
Dieanna Estes received her BS in Organizational Leadership from Azusa Pacific University out of California. She is the mother of four beautiful children and serves as the Pastors wife of Lakewood UPC in Lakewood, WA. Her hobbies consist of making her house into a home, fun and inexpensive DIY’s and event planning. You can follow her on Instagram @Blessednesting.