Encouragement for Today - Jan. 20, 2012
January 20, 2012
What If I Were Broken?
"Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy." Micah 7:18 (NIV 1984)
His question made me stop and think. It was a simple comment, said in a teasing manner, but instantly struck a chord in my heart.
One afternoon I was cleaning out a kitchen cabinet full of items I rarely used when I found an old broken can opener. I handed it to my nine year-old son and asked him to throw it away. Instead of just tossing it into the trashcan, he asked if he could keep it.
Why in the world would a little boy want an old, dirty, useless can opener? I thought.
He insisted he needed to keep it. Finally I said, "Honey, it is broken. I don't want it or need it anymore, so throw it away please."
"Well if I were broken, would you just throw me away?" he asked.
Huh? Our conversation about a silly can opener had gotten way too complicated. I assured him I would never throw him away, no matter what, because he was too valuable to me. Then I gave him a hug and he skipped off into the den to watch TV, while I stood there stunned, pondering his question.
I remembered being like that can opener. Broken, dirty and useless - at least in my eyes. A horrible decision I made as a young girl convinced me for years that I had no redeeming value in God's eyes. Regret suffocated my heart for years, and plagued me with lies that God could never really love a sinner like me.
I stood there in my kitchen vividly remembering the overwhelming pain and regret of feeling broken, and void of worth, beauty or value. But then a smile slipped across my face as I remembered the day God healed my brokenness. Sitting alone on a pew during a worship service several years before, tears pouring down my face, I begged God to forgive me for my sins. I had asked before, fourteen years before in fact, but this time it was different.
I felt God's presence and believed His promise of forgiveness. For the first time, I heard His voice ring in the ears of my heart, reassuring me that I was too valuable to be thrown away. The following day I realized something was different. My past was still my past, but I was no longer broken.
The damaged pieces of my heart were mended, and I set out on a wonderful journey to discover my worth in God's eyes. Over time I read His promises and started to believe I really was valuable and that He not only loved me, He liked me!
Are you feeling broken today? Do you ever feel like God could love everyone else, but not you? Do you spend each day condemning yourself for past sins, current habits, damaged relationships, poor choices, or even self-harming behavior?
Do you ever feel like you are just too messed up to be "fixed?" Do you wish you could stop feeling broken, or break the cycle of sin in your life, but simply do not know how?
Despite what you think, you are not beyond repair. As a child of God, you are precious, beautiful and part of God's inheritance, just as today's verse says.
Whatever your situation, God can mend that crushing feeling of hopelessness and brokenness. With faith, ask Him to. Then delight in Him by accepting His grace, mercy and forgiveness.
Dear Lord, forgive me and heal me. Mend my brokenness. Give me hope. Help me to see myself through Your eyes only. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Do you know the Mender of broken hearts?
Reinventing Your Rainbow by Tracie Miles
Visit Tracie's blog for more encouragement about spiritual healing and the journey of discovering how God can turn your past into your purpose.
Would you like to bring the message of this devotion to the women of your church? Click here to find out more about considering Tracie as a retreat / key note speaker.
Reflect and Respond:
Has something or someone ever made me feel worthless? How often do I think negative thoughts about myself?
When will I take time this week to ask God to mend my brokenness and help me truly believe He can and wants to?
Matthew 9:12-13, "On hearing this, Jesus said, 'It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: "I desire mercy, not sacrifice." For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.'" (NIV 1984)
Psalm 147:3, "He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds." (NIV 1984)
Isaiah 54:11-12, 14, "O you afflicted one, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay your stones with colorful gems, and lay your foundations with sapphires. I will make your pinnacles of rubies, your gates of crystal, and all your walls of precious stones. In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you." (NKJV)
© 2012 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105