Day 15 // Broken

Read: Psalm 51:17, Ezekiel 36:26-28, Romans 8:18-25, Phil 4:13, Lamentations 3:22-24, Romans 8:18-25, Rev 21:4


I’ve been staring at the computer screen for almost an hour, not knowing how to put into words what I want to say.

We live in a broken world.

We have all experienced some form of brokenness in our lives.  If you say you haven’t, you are either lying or have yet to experience pain in the deepest of ways. When I try to narrow down just one example of brokenness in this world...I can’t. It’s all around us and easy to find just by scrolling our Facebook feeds.

A friend who is pregnant with her third child finds out there is no longer a heartbeat.
A mom remembers her two children who tragically died in a car accident on their way home from college.
A sister is undergoing experimental treatment for a disease that has no clear answer.

Brokenness often comes when we least expect it and then the blow smashes all of our plans into a million little pieces.

Earlier this month, I asked you what makes you cry, and urged you to find rhythm in a world full of rush. Our tears are both an indicator of what is wrong in our immediate bubble and what is wrong in the world at large. Today, I want to ask you again: what makes you cry? What makes your heart hurt so much that you feel like you might suffocate if you don’t give it to God?

 
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
— Psalm 51:17
 

On the first day of this study, I shared how my life was changed when our twin girls were born three months premature. One night early in their NICU stay, my husband and I were driving home and I was overcome with this feeling that one of our twins was going to die. We pulled over the car and cried out to God through the deepest marrows of our souls. I remember falling on the floor and just begging God to let me keep my babies. It was one of the most traumatic experiences of my life. I am so  thankful that both twins survived and have grown into the most beautiful five-year-old girls that I could ever have imagined. But, I know that not every story of brokenness has the same ending. Our world is full of pain and heartbreak, and it is  easy to ask God why He lets one child die and another survive.

I don’t believe we will fully understand the answer of brokenness until we are healed in heaven. Psalm 56:8 tells us that God keeps track of all our sorrows and has collected all our tears in a bottle. We can find comfort in knowing that God hurts when we hurt.

One night I was up late, when the twins were home from the hospital, and I stumbled upon a website that was about babies being born prematurely in underdeveloped countries. The website said that these children are at a much higher risk for infection because they often have to share incubators and don’t have the medical equipment necessary to help them survive. Out of nowhere, I began to sob. My heart hurt so much for those children. I wanted to help by adopting all of those kids and bringing them to our country to receive medical treatment, but that wasn’t realistic. The only way I knew how to help was to make a donation to the organization that was being the hands and feet of Jesus in those communities. I knew that I was just one person, but maybe my donation could help just one child.

Today, I want you to act on your brokenness. I know it might be painful to relive your difficulties, but other people need your help. What amazes me most is when people who hurt want to help others who are hurting from similar experiences. Cancer survivors raise funds for cancer treatments. Moms who have lost their children walk other moms through their grief. Former teenage moms teach students in high school about safe sex and what Scripture says about abstinence. Instead of running from their brokenness, these people relive it to help others who are currently walking through it.

With every heartache, God gives us hope. When we can look into someone else’s eyes and know that they are broken just like us, we see the world the way Jesus did. Surround yourself in community and believe that healing comes when we extend ourselves to help others.

 
I believe that everything that happens in our lives, however awful, is an opportunity to bring glory to Jesus. Have I wished it had been in a different way? Of course I do. And you probably do too. The most we can do is put our hands on the stone and accept what happens next with the grace that says circumstances will define neither God’s love for us nor our love for God.
— Angie Smith, "I Will Carry You"
 

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Christen Price

Christen Price is a creative mess. With her gentle yet passionate voice, Christen invites you to celebrate each day through pictures, podcasts, and printables. Her heart is for creating community and she invites you to visit her website and shop her first devotional, Practice Hospitality, at christenprice.com. Christen has served as the Women's Ministry Director at Covenant United Methodist Church and is a contributor to The M.O.M. Initiative. She and her husband Raleigh are the parents of three and live in the country just outside the Dothan city limits. For life between the posts, connect with her on Facebook or on Instagram @chris10price.