How often have you heard the expression, “He’s a broken man?” It brings to mind someone who through circumstances has lost it all, at times through no fault of their own. Let’s take a close look at the words broken and brokenness. Definitions include: fractured, crushed, pulverized, smitten, afflicted, and shattered. How would you like your life to be described that way? When a person becomes broken, they often are devastated with a loss of family, home, occupation, self respect, and even at times loss of health. To be broken appears to be a very negative thing. It is a negative, which can be turned into a big positive! Individuals, families, churches, communities, and nations benefit from brokenness.
Remember the symbol for negative, that flat horizontal line…How does it become a positive? You add a vertical line in the center. What do you see? A cross is formed! Disease left Job broken. He suffered the loss of his family, financial disaster, and received unfair criticism from family and friends. The most crucial loss came in the sense of losing Gods’ presence. How did he respond? (See Job 17:1) Job’s life became broken by negatives, yet the story continues… (Job 42:1-6, 10) Job received a second chance!
Hannah felt crushed and broken, because of the loss of a fertile womb. (I Samuel 1:5-18) God transformed this seemingly hopeless situation into praise! (I Samuel 1:26-27) Imagine her joy! Her dramatic answer to her heart cries filled her mouth with thanksgiving. She could not hold it in!
(I Samuel 2: 1-10)
Naomi traced her brokenness to the loss of her husband and both of her adult sons. (Ruth 1:20-21) God would display His power over seemingly hopeless circumstances. (Ruth 4:13-16) She once could only see death and grief. Now, life and rejoicing pulsed through her veins!
The sin and guilt of King David’s adultery with Bathsheba left him broken. He tried to cover up and eventually put plans into action resulting in the murder of Bathsheba’s husband in battle. David experienced the deep loss of intimate fellowship with God. (Psalms 38:8/ 51:17) David became contrite, deeply sorry, and repented. David’s negatives became positives. (Psalms 51:13) He would be used by God to be a channel of blessing!
The Apostle Peter’s life lay broken at his feet following his sin of denying The Lord Jesus. (Luke 22:54-62) Peter thought he could never be trusted by Jesus again; how could he ever face his Lord? His total failure turned into a positive! (John 21: 15-17) His Master, the Great Shepherd gave him a special assignment, feeding the sheep!
God does not want us to stay locked into sorrow and brokenness. (Psalms 147:3/Ezekiel 34:16) Picture this if you can…Your life may be hard, no longer warmed by Gods’ word. Your life may be brittle, like a piece of pottery…needing transformation. Maybe you are living for him, but he wants to use your life as a demonstration of his power and grace…..Let Him gently break you. He will put the pieces back together! Jesus is always our model to follow. (Luke 4:18/ Isaiah 61:1-3) He has set free the downtrodden, released the broken from sorrow! Jesus offered His body as a sacrifice, becoming broken for you and me. Will we share in the power of His suffering and resurrection? (I Peter 4:13)