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Bible Christian Brokenness
Brokenness and Closed Doors
What are you to do when your dreams, aspirations, and all those things which you believe are rightful for you are smashed like glass before the hammer? What do you do when faced by a closed door in life?
All He Wanted to do Was Play Piano!
Brokenness and the Piano Player
What do you do when faced by a closed door in life?
A Missouri youth had to answer this quest. Harry was a brilliant and gifted boy. His future was before him, and he radiated talent and desire for the piano. He illuminated as he fingered the ivories. His love and passion caused him to want to practice and practice and practice. At the age of seven he was at the keyboard by five each morning. He trained faithfully for hours each day. Under the guidance of Mrs. E. C. White, he fashioned each day with stronger hope that he would in due course reach greatness. He pursued perfection like a thirsty man in the desert seeks water. When Harry was 15, Mrs. White brought news to her superstar pupil. Paderewski, the greatest pianist of the day, was coming to town. Harry was ecstatic as he listened to Paderewski play. Mrs. White took her prodigy backstage after the performance to meet Paderewski. With shaky voice, the youth told the renowned pianist that he played his minuet. "There is a part of it that I do not know how to execute." They returned to the piano on the empty stage. As the apprentice played, Paderewski gave a nod of endorsement to the boy's teacher. A bright future seemed to loom before young Harry. His passion for the keyboard exploded like Independence Day’s blaring rockets. The door seemed opened wide. Then the slam came! Within one year Harry’s father lost everything in the Kansas City grain market. Harry had to go to work, and his dreams of the concert stage were devastated. What did Harry do when his aspirations were shattered? Did the boy give up on life? Did he let this closed door stop him? No, not at all, for this young, gifted, promising pianist would work what he could work. His destiny was to become world famous as President of the United States. His name was Harry S. Truman
An Alabaster Jar (but larger)
Brokenness and the Alabaster Jar
Mark 14:3 While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head. (NIV Bible)
This is a most beautiful story. This nondescript woman (generally thought to be Mary Magdalene, or Mary, the sister of Lazarus) comes before Jesus with an alabaster jar of costly perfume. The container was most likely made of stone with a sealed neck of wax. The jar sealed the fragrance of the pure nard perfume within its tomb. The bouquet could only be released if the wax sealed neck was broken. However, that was the purpose of that alabaster jar! The flask was made to be broken, and the perfume was made to be released. It was customary for a “little dab” to be used for a guest. On the contrary, Mary poured it over the head of Jesus. The beautiful scent filled the house with worship for the Christ.
What do you do when you are broken? Do you give up on living? Remember, you are like that alabaster jar. You are made to be broken. Inside everyone is the beauty and bouquet of our Creator. Our lives are to flow like a river waterfall of worship and service before Him. However, often this beauty of living is sealed up. The fragrance of our destinies has been buried by layers of mire and closed doors. God allows us to become broken that a greater beauty may be revealed.
When I ponder on this, I realize that God wills the pain of the broken vessel in my life. I have a river of good within me. It is not mine by source, but it is given me by my Savior. Lest anyone feel I am arrogant in this assumption, the real source of this river is from God to all people. Man is the capstone of His creation, and with it, the LORD says, “It is very good!” Each of us has the waterway of goodness flowing from within outward to the world. The problem is that closed doors and clogged events seal it within me like that alabaster jar. Often I need to be broken to get my life flowing again. It is painful, but not as hurtful as a wasted life. Nature teaches me that birthing new life is painful too, but when the newness is born, ‘It is very good!’
The Clay In The Master Potter's Hand
Broken Vessels In The Potter's Hand
Jeremiah 18:4 And the vessel that he was making from clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he made it over, reworking it into another vessel as it seemed good to the potter to make it. (AMP Bible)
The Christian is also like the clay mentioned in the book of Jeremiah in the Potter’s hands. He is the Potter, I am the clay. I am a beautiful vessel because I exist that way in my Potter’s mind. His hands mold me day by day. However, sometimes I am hardened by closed doors, personal stubbornness and sin, and just daily wear (or whatever). I am still in the Master’s mind a splendid vessel with much usefulness, but I must be reworked. As clay, it is painful to be broken, but His purpose requires it. Faith is mine to realize that His hands are good hands, and they can heal the hurt. I can be recreated, if I allow Him access to me life!
What are you to do when your dreams, aspirations, and all those things which you believe are rightful for you are smashed like glass before the hammer? What do you do when faced by a closed door in life? You have a choice; you can give up on living, or you can continue living in the good and caring and healing hands of Christ.
Brokenness of the Buried Seed
John 12:24 I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Unless a grain of
wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains [just one grain; it
never becomes more but lives] by itself alone. But if it dies, it
produces many others and yields a rich harvest. (AMP Bible)
Have you ever had the privilege of working in a garden? If so, have you have ever unearthed the root system of a new plant? As a youth I remember helping in my dad’s garden. Occasionally I would dig a planted seed from the ground. That is when I made a startling discovery. The hard but smart seed we planted several weeks before had become a rotted shell. Nothing of its previous subsistence remained. It died in the process of giving life. Gone was its identity, appearance, autonomy, worth and beauty. All was surrendered. However, by dying it was made alive. The broken became the fruitful, and great was the bounty of that fruit. One corn seed is broken and dies; one typical ear of corn has 800 new corn seeds. You do the math.
1st Corinthians 15:36 You fool! The seed you plant does not come to life unless it dies, (ISV Bible)
Paul understood the message of brokenness. Jesus laid His brokenness in the grave, and we live and have our being today because of it. Christianity is because of brokenness. Even death itself, our last enemy, cannot stop the witness of the Christian who lives his/her life in Christ.
Col 3:1-4 IF THEN you have been raised with Christ [to a new life, thus sharing His resurrection from the dead], aim at and seek the [rich, eternal treasures] that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. [Ps. 110:1.] (2) And set your minds and keep them set on what is above (the higher things), not on the things that are on the earth. (3) For [as far as this world is concerned] you have died, and your [new, real] life is hidden with Christ in God. (4) When Christ, Who is our life, appears, then you also will appear with Him in [the splendor of His] glory. (AMP Bible)
Three important lessons about the buried grain.
- If you don’t die, you can’t live.
- If you don’t die, you can’t bear fruit.
- If you die, you can bear much fruit.
Brokenness and the Rewards of Faith and Faithfulness
What are you to do when your dreams, aspirations, and all those things which you believe are rightful for you are smashed like glass before the hammer? What do you do when faced by a closed door in life? You trust God and keep going!
- Although today he prunes my twigs with pain,
- Yet doth his blood nourish and warm my root:
- Tomorrow I shall put forth buds again
- And clothe myself with fruit.
- Christina Georgina Rossetti (1830-1894)
Galatians 2:20 I no longer live, but Christ lives in me, and the life that I now live in the flesh I live by the faithfulness of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (ISV Bible)