The other day my wife accidentally dropped a bag containing a Thermos flask. Hoping for the best, that the flask was undamaged, she tentatively removed the flask from the bag and was pleased to see that it appeared to have survived the fall unmarked. However, a closer inspection indicated that the contents of the flask were actually leaking out and still further investigation revealed that, unfortunately, the inside of the flask was totally broken.
I think this is perhaps a good illustration of how we can be. We can be so good at appearing to others as if all is well, while so often concealing the hidden pain and brokenness we are carrying. We can be very good at ‘brushing up’ and portraying ourselves as respectable and acceptable people, while all the time feeling wretched and worthless on the inside. All may go well for a time, until something happens, or something is said, or we find ourselves in an unfamiliar or insecure environment, which causes what we are concealing to leak out. It may be a word, an action or reaction or an uncharacteristic response, but something which shows that all’s not as well with us as would appear.
The good news is that Jesus came to deal with the mess and the lack of healing, the brokenness, in our lives, and restore us to the person he originally planned us to be. He wants us to invite Him into that broken situation, where he can begin the process of rebuilding and remaking us into what he intends us to be. Unlike the flask, which had to be thrown away, God is in the restoration business, making us a new person, and does not discard or reject any one. ‘Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: the old has gone, the new is here!’ (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Due to doubt, guilt, fear, shame, pain, bitterness or un-forgiveness, it isn’t always easy to let Jesus into the situation, but that is just what He wants us to do. After all, that is why He gave His life for us, to bring healing, hope and new life to anyone who reaches out to Him. If we acknowledge our need for His healing touch and reach out to Him, then, by His Spirit, He’ll meet us right where we are. He’ll strengthen us and help us to confront whatever the issues are. He’ll show us how to deal with them, so we can become as whole on the inside as we appear on the outside. In this way, we become a useful and reliable vessel, able to carry the message of His love to others.
May we be able to say with the song writer, Bill Gaither, ‘All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife, but He made something beautiful of my life.’
Prayer: Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from Your presence or take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways so that sinners will turn back to You’ (Psalm 51:10-15). Amen.
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