Focus: The beauty and value of being in a broken state
2 Corinthians 4:17-18 (NIV) For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Hardly anyone wants to be broken. What value could there be in having your heart torn apart or your dreams shattered? What is there to appreciate when you’re in that condition?
In the middle of a crisis—the only thing most people can think about is surviving. A normal mind would be focused on just getting through it—not thinking what is great about this awful moment in time. Practically nobody wants a period of darkness or depression to last. Let’s face it, it’s hard to hurt. You want it to stop and you want it to be over.
My mind goes to the words of a very beautiful song called ‘Eagles Wings’, which had to be written by someone who saw a bigger picture—someone who was able to see past their present suffering, and embrace the tenderness of time spent in the broken state. The verse of the song begins: ‘Here I am waiting’. Don’t those words fit well with the condition of brokenness? Doesn’t it seem like you’re waiting for something endless to end? So, yes, here you are waiting…and the very next line says ‘abide in me I pray’. Notice the writer is not quick to say ‘get me out of this I pray’…but, ‘abide in me I pray’. While I’m waiting—abide in me, or ‘stay with me’.
For some of us, it took a few stumbles to fully realize the importance of having the abiding presence of God in our life. When a person is first starting out—they never seem to know how weak they actually are. Most people have the attitude in their youth and young adulthood that they can do anything. But, after several failures—some might begin to know they need God. Even then—it can take a while to understand or admit you need Him to ‘stay with you’. For a while, you call on Him in an emergency—He bails you out—and you get back to your own life until the next emergency. This cycle can go on indefinitely. God is very patient and kind…and He continues to come when you call.
Let’s get back to the song. The next words say, ‘here I am longing for You’. No doubt. The pit of desperation is lonely. You are in a place of longing. At the bottom of a dark hole, you know the only one who is really there for you, is God.
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Moving on with the lyrics—‘hide me in Your love’. Well, that sounds like a sweet thing—to be hidden—because often in the broken state, there are people you don’t want to see and things you don’t want to face. So, being able to ‘hide’ sounds good.
The next line is the clincher, ‘bring me to my knees’. Let’s pause and think about the gravity of that statement, ‘bring me to my knees’. You might think, ‘what fool would say that?’ It’s hard to imagine wanting to be brought to your knees in a place of true submission and surrender. What does it take for a person to desire something like that? Usually brokenness…but, who wants to be broken?
The last line of the verse says, ‘may I know Jesus more and more’. Well, there you have it. The writer of the song had come to embrace the revelation that being brought to their knees—or broken—is the place where they would know Jesus better. They realized that being in the broken state is a precious place near to the heart of God.
As David was talking to God in Psalm 51, he said, ‘a broken and contrite heart You will not despise’. At the place of brokenness—you have to be carried by your Shepherd. You can’t walk on your own, so you need Him to pick you up and hold you in His arms. Your legs won’t stand and you have no strength to walk, so He has to do it for you. He doesn’t mind. He loves holding you. When you’re not broken—you tend to be on the run a lot. You don’t have as much of a sense of ‘need’ when your life is going along okay.
Understanding the concept of how brokenness affects our relationship with the Lord—and being willing to abide or remain in a broken state as a matter of ‘choice’, takes some meekness. The only way you can approach such a thing is with a cautious reverence. What you’re telling God is, ‘Go ahead and do what You have to do to keep me on my knees’.
When we surrender our mind, will, and emotions to God and ask Him to use us, He has to get us into a form that will fit His purpose. The ‘shape’ He likes quite well is that of ‘people who are on their knees’…the shape of a person who has come to the point of knowing that it is not their will, but His that is best. But, even more than that—a person who is not in a hurry to get off their knees—someone who might just want to stay there and ‘wait’—because they have come to understand and appreciate that ‘on their knees’ is where they will know Jesus more and more.
Declaration: I will find new strength by embracing the beauty and value of waiting in the broken state…knowing that this is where I will be closest to the heart of God and truly get to know Jesus intimately.
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