Monday, April 14

BROKENNESS


Definition: In the positive spiritual sense, brokenness is the condition of being completely subdued and humbled before the Lord, and as a result, completely yielded to and dependent upon Him also.

When you don't feel like God is near, you don't feel like He hears you or cares about you, when you feel like your world is falling apart and like the God so many profess and love has meant nothing to you. When you cannot describe the hurt and pain in your life and feel that no one else can possibly understand. When you question the decisions of today, tomorrow, and a thousand yesterdays. When you want to yell and scream at the God of the Universe but then you wonder why you would waste your energy because it doesn't feel like He's really there anyway. When you question the very existence of God because He's never meant anything to you personally, but you can't bear to say it out loud because you were raised in the idea of Christian beliefs as a societal rule even though it was filled with hypocrisy and idle faith. When God feels like someone else's fairy tale and a mind game that successful people throw around. When you feel bitterness toward those that experience success and feel anger at your own defeat. When you can only find your worth in other people's success (for instance, your children), or when your worth comes from something physical (a bottle, a needle, or even just chocolate and french fries...). When your friends cannot understand your lack of interest in their God and you cannot bear to tell them that you're not interested because you NEED their love and support. Or when they scoff at the idea of God and run their lives their own way. When life falls apart. When you have nothing left to give. When you ache for normal, peace, and for the "good old days" again...

There... at the bottom, without hope, there truly is ONE who wants to help you. Wants to heal your heart. Wants to lead you toward happiness. Wants to give you worth. Wants to help you see past the dirty of today into the tomorrow. He doesn't take away our consequences for life's choices, but He listens. He doesn't reject you, and He doesn't backlash if we reject Him. He does require that we accept His gifts for ourselves, though, because we cannot ride on the shirttails of our ancestors to say we are Christians. We have to see past our grandfather's faith and lay our own lives down.

"I have nothing left, and I don't feel like you have ever cared" Cry it out to Him.

"I want to make things right in my life, and I know I need help to do that!" He really does hear your pleas.

"I need to see a brighter tomorrow. I need Hope back, I need Joy back." He can give those things, but you do have to ask for them.

"I want to have you as a part of my future. I want to hear you, to feel you, to know you are really there, because right now, I don't." He's ok with your real feelings, you don't have to pretend.

Even this... "I don't like you, I don't know if I want you. But I need to tell you that!!"

BROKENNESS... Laying your life out, prostrate without barriers before the Lord because your heart is so overwhelmingly burdened for something that words don't come and only the utterances of your heart can form prayers.

Cry out to Him. Find an empty room, park your car where you can be alone. Let yourself be vulnerable before God. Tell him how you feel! And wait. And listen. And feel.

Yesterday was Palm Sunday, the day we mark as a celebration of Jesus' arrival in Jerusalem. Where the week began with great celebration and ended with Jesus' crucifixion and death. But the new week began again after the time of darkness, despair, and agony. Literal DEATH through the most torturous means available. Having thorns pierced through his head, and hanging by nails in his hands and feet. Not because he was a robber or a rapist or a murderer or anything else. Because on the cross he took the sins that you and I have committed, all the sins from the beginning to the end, and He bore them on the cross. His heart broke in the physical sign of stresses, he sweat blood. And he still showed mercy to the man on the cross beside him even in his final hours.

There is forgiveness. There is mercy. There is a REAL God, a real Jesus Christ, His son. And He wants to be a part of your story. A part of your healing. A part of your life past your grandmother's faith. He wants to be real to you.

Find your place, let your emotions out, be angry, be sad, be whatever you need to be... be yourself. God is big enough to hear it all. To bear it all. And He already did, on that cross.

The story doesn't end with the cross, though. It ends with the resurrection, where God came to earth and showed us all that He has overcome the grave, given forgiveness beyond what man alone can do in his own heart. That through Jesus Christ we can know and have direct access to God the Father. That our sins weren't forgiven here on earth alone, but in Heaven, and that He wants to have a relationship with us, and to give us the genuine gift of eternal life.

It's not a fairy tale of your friend's successes, but a true faith with a living God.

Find him. Search Him out. Be real with Him. Then if you will, come, tell me about it so I can celebrate with you and pray for you on your continued walk toward Him. It doesn't mean everything bad goes away, but it means you have the Hope, the Joy, the One who never leaves you by your side to face the hard times in life.

This Easter season, look for Jesus. He's waiting to hear from you...

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