31 Days of Hope in Brokenness
Jesus has been teaching me something lately that I want to share with y’all.
My whole life, I have felt a little bit broken.
In my heart of hearts, I have always sensed that I am not quite whole. Like there are pieces missing, like I did not get the same manual for life that others seemed to have. Like everyone else had it together, and for some reason, I just didn’t.
I have also done some work on my emotions (with SO much help from the Lord and several awesome therapists) over the years that has helped me pinpoint that some of that broken feeling comes from growing up without ever knowing or meeting my dad. This has impacted me a lot more than I thought it ever could, but identifying my father wound has helped me know what to cry out to God for in my brokenness – namely, the reassurance and love of my Father in heaven who does not fail or leave – and the struggle has been a constant reminder that my very life depends on my leaning in closer to Jesus. There is truly nothing He can’t heal.
But what happens when He doesn’t choose to snap His fingers and heal us immediately?
There are so many things I thought I had to wait to do until I was fully healed. Follow my calling to get involved in ministry? Welp, can’t do that. Who would want a leader or a teacher who is dealing with her own struggles? 1 Timothy 3 indeed seems to warn against unqualified folks in positions of leadership, after all:
Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) (1 Tim. 3:2-5)
Those are wise words. We need to balance our understanding of them with the blood of Christ, though, so that the enemy cannot turn Scripture against us in condemnation (what a jerk). We are to earnestly and humbly seek the Lord at all times and follow His direction with regard to who He is raising up in leadership – and be careful who we follow. BUT, being qualified really has nothing to do with it, does it? It can’t. The truth is, I am NOT qualified, because none of us are really qualified. The truth is, I am all jacked up. And you are all jacked up. We are all jacked up together. The beautiful part? Jesus came for us anyway.
But God proves his love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13)
And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. (Romans 8:30)
Those who lead can consider themselves qualified by this and this alone: the blood of Jesus and the ever-present help of the Holy Spirit. Oh, may we be so careful not to think we are fit for any role of leadership on our own, with only our tiny human talents!
So I began receiving wise counsel from friends and the Holy Spirit that said to my heart, “God has used a lot of messed up people. What makes you so special that He can’t use you?” I began to realize that the answer was not to wait until I was perfect and whole to step into my calling and gifts – the answer was to realize I AM broken, look my brokenness right in the face, and do things anyway. Similar to how bravery is not the absence of fear but doing things anyway even while afraid, maybe real ministry is not about being perfect but taking care of others the best we can, even in our own imperfections. And maybe that’s the way forward into healing, too – not waiting to be whole to live your life, but living it broken, with hope.
That’s what the month of October is going to be about here at Everyday Grace.
Every day, I am committing to writing to you about hope in the middle of brokenness. Some days, I might share a bit of wisdom I have gleaned from walking through my own struggles in the past. Some days, I might share with you something I am right in the middle of learning, something from the brokenness I still carry that is still in the process of being healed. If you, too, have ever felt a little bit broken and different from others, then maybe you are part of the reason God has me writing this! Stay tuned for a new post every day starting October 1, and a new way of finding hope in the middle of brokenness. This October series is for all of us, my friends – I can’t wait to walk this journey together.
As we walk through the month, you will be able to find the posts linked here as an easy way to find them all once the series is over. Here is the directory:
Day 1: Your Mess is Not You
Day 3: The God Who Transforms
Day 4: It’s Okay to Not Be Okay
Day 5: You Are His Dwelling Place
Day 6: You Are Invited
Day 7: Hurt People Hurt People
Day 8: As You Are
Day 9: We Can Do Hard Things
Day 12: This is Temporary
Day 13: Lean In
Day 14: Do the Work
Day 15: When You Forget
Day 16: Bitter or Better
Day 17: A New Story
Day 18: Nothing
Day 19: He Delights in You
Day 20: The God Who Gets It
Day 21: Not Optional
Day 22: Adonai Jireh
Day 23: Adonai Nissi
Day 24: Adonai Rapha
Day 25: Adonai Shama
Day 26: Keep Crawling
Day 27: Turn On the Light
Day 28: He Uses Broken People
Day 29: When the Lights Go Out
Day 30: Together
Day 31: Forward