Sunday, December 24, 2017

Damaged or Gracefully Broken?

Matt Redman sings a song entitled, "Gracefully Broken", in which the chorus of the song really depicts an image we all need to grasp fully. Listen carefully to these words: "Here I am God, arms wide open, pouring out my life, gracefully broken."  The image is one of submission - lifting arms - not just a little bit, but totally and completely wide open. Wide open - does that frighten anyone else? Wide open means nothing is hidden, but it also means nothing is unable to enter into the space created by being open to receive!

But you’ll welcome us with open arms when we run for cover to you. Let the party last all night! Stand guard over our celebration. You are famous, God, for welcoming God-seekers, for decking us out in delight. (Psalm 5:11-12 MSG)

God has a special way of welcoming those with open arms - for open arms depict an open heart - and an open heart is the best ground for God's grace to work. God can take what we offer with open arms - open heart. He can also take away what we give to him with filled hands so that we are again free to accept what he wants to fill those hands with in return. Grace breaks us - grace remakes us.

What comes to mind when you hear those words "gracefully broken"? I know when I have dropped something on the floor, the shattered pieces don't always seem to depict an image of "gracefully broken". The shattered pieces depict helpless damage oftentimes beyond human repair! Maybe this is the image of what we see when we imagine being "gracefully broken" - grace bringing us to the place we recognize we are damaged beyond human repair!

Life manages to break us down. Grace accomplishes the breaking that builds us back up again! I don't understand how God does his rebuilding in my life, but I know it is constantly amazing me how much his grace remakes what life has broken down beyond what looks like any repair would be possible! We sometimes feel the most helpless at the point where God is about to do the work of rebuilding us in those broken places!

Gracefully broken - arms wide open - heart yielded. Maybe this is the best posture we take this Christmas season - arms wide open, pouring out our life before him - acknowledging we have need of more of him in each of us. Let us be gracefully broken and gracefully rebuilt by his hands! May your Christmas be wholly celebrated! Just prayin!