I’ve blogged on this before, yet I know it is not near enough.

I have been on a quest to find something rare during my time and stay in Franklin, TN this time: brokenness. Why search for it, you ask? You know how people say “Don’t pray for patience” or “Watch what you pray for”? Well, I really don’t care what other people say. I pray for brokenness in the same way as patience. It really ought to be something that exists on a daily basis. I need to keep it front and center.

Brokenness has been underrated since the beginning of the fall of mankind. My pride in doing things on my own stinks and humility is always where God wants me.

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” Psalm 51:17

“Broken” Hebrew shabar (Strong’s: H7665) appears 793 times in the Old Testament and in this particular scripture verse, the verb is considered a passive tense verb, although I believe it is in a simple form that remains active in the English. It can be a past, present and future form of being (someone please correct me if I am wrong).

In it’s Nephal tense it means:

1. to be broken, be maimed, be crippled, be wrecked

2. to be broken, to be crushed (figuratively)

My mind instantly goes to Jacob (Genesis 32:22-32); to the place where he wrestled with the Angel of the Lord (a Christophony). Jacob wouldn’t stop wrestling with God until He knew he had His blessing. The manifestation of God pulls Jacob’s hip out of socket and gives him a new name, Israel, so that he would remember that He saw God face to face, and that his life was delivered by Him. And then He blessed him.

Remain Broken BlogOh, how many times I know I wrestle with God and ask Him to bless my life at the same time. I too, have seen His goodness, “face to face”, in His word and in observing His active deliverance in my own life. I bear the scars of my rebellion and wrestling with Him. Yet, in His mercy and grace He has allowed me to persevere. And it is His hope that I have, evidenced by His Holy Spirit in me, that His love is poured out in my heart (Romans 5:3-5). It is His finished work at the cross that I have accepted in my life. This is my blessing: that Jesus has delivered me and I will live forever with Him. I am sealed for the day of redemption. He has not left or forsaken me, even though I feel alone many times. Brokenness hurts, but it doesn’t mean I am without hope. Brokenness is a sign of strength and humility. It is a sign that God is at work in me.

I want to remain broken, so I remain in Him. And one day, like Jacob, I will joyfully receive a new name and see the promise of His blessing.

Yes, it is very good to be broken; to have my life utterly wrecked, so that I do not rely on my own strength to do things. He will be the One that delivers me every time (past, present and future) from my self…so that I will remember what He has done for me. So that I will remember what I have overcome.

He builds my character. Refines me. And He is making me ready to see Him one day, when I am welcomed home.

Reference:

Hebrew Tenses – Help :: Help Tutorials :: Hebrew Verb Tenses.

http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H7665&t=ESV

https://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Psa&c=51&t=KJV&p=0#s=t_conc_529017

Here it is, Feb 17, 2015, and while I am experiencing an ice storm and frigid temps in Nashville, TN, my son is back home mowing the lawn in 60 degree weather in the Pacific Northwest and my husband says the trees are starting to bud out. Such timing. Actually, I really do think it was excellent timing, because God’s timing is always perfect. He is always on time with His answers.

Tonight I was booked for the Nashville Rescue Mission at the Women’s Campus. My sister came down by bus from Indiana to help me with the ministry event. I thought it would be a great opportunity to “break her in” to helping me with setup and seeing what I do, as she will be assisting me more often during events that I need to travel to. We have the same dad (we joke, my sister from another mother) but we never grew up together, so it was also a test of living together for a short week to see how well we could work with each other for the sake of my music ministry when I need to tour. It’s a great fit and we got to know each other more, growing closer than we ever have before. It brings tears to my eyes even as I write this, as to how intentional God has been to bring things around full circle in my life, including bringing us two girls together for such a time as this in our lives. Okay, back to my night…

The contact person I was to have for tonight, and who was to help me with the sound check, didn’t show up to work today, due to the bad weather. In fact, the mission didn’t even think I would come, since the roads have been so bad. But we surprised them! I told Amber (my sister) earlier in the day, “you know, all those women are there. It’s not like they have anywhere else they can go. They have to be there and they need to be encouraged. So we need to be there.” Earlier in the news that morning, the Rescue Mission was interviewed and they said they were trying to make sure not a single homeless person would be turned away, even if it meant they had to sleep in a chair or on the floor. So if the city of Nashville could go around attempting to bring in any homeless person they could find, I could surely trek in to the Rescue Mission to give the women a warm night of fellowship. It’s quite a small sacrifice for me compared to the sacrifices they have lived through.

Since I didn’t know how to run the sound system at the center and no one was there who could operate it, I made a quick run back to the apartment, leaving Amber at the Rescue Mission to continue with setup. I got back just in time to set up my system and we started 5 minutes behind schedule (lesson learned: always have my sound system with me regardless). Not bad considering that the employees thought that they were on their own that night. They were so relieved to know that I came despite the weather. I was just overjoyed that I could be there to serve. My vehicle was so dependable and handled so well on the roads, that it just wasn’t a concern of mine at all to drive in the weather.

I can’t begin to tell you (although I’ll try) how amazing and humbling it is to reach out in love and minister to the broken and homeless women and children who are so hungry (literally, emotionally and spiritually). I always pray that I can be a blessing to the hearts I am ministering to, but they too, bless mine. As I looked around the room while singing my songs, sharing my stories and scriptures of truth, I tried to be intentional to look at each and every woman and child in that room. Every single one of them mattered to God, and so they needed to matter to me. I wanted to convey that deeply to them. They were so present listening, soaking up the words, message and music. Some with heads bowed, some weeping quietly, some looking very hard and worn down by life, and some holding their children, cuddling them in their laps. I couldn’t imagine all that they had been through to be at this point of “in-between” in their lives. I thought how easily a circumstance could change in my own life, and I could be right there alongside them. This was their home. And I was invited to come into it and bring them a message of hope and healing with my music ministry. I don’t think there could be a greater honor anywhere on this earth than to have been with these women tonight. We talked, we laughed, we related. We sang, we clapped, we praised and prayed.

With all of the little glitches that came up for that night, we ended up having a packed house, thanks to the cold and icy weather. We had to rely on God for the details with getting me back and forth safely, with the additional equipment. I needed my sister there desperately to help get everything set up, so I could even go back and get the PA system (and she did great). Yes, God was in this place tonight. He knew who needed to be there and He somehow counted someone like me, worthy enough to reach out and touch the hearts of these women with my music ministry. He is so very good!

It’s times like these, where I wish I was independently wealthy, or had a huge financial backer so I could dedicate more of my life to going around to places like this, playing and ministering to these brave and broken women. My music, personal testimonies and experience as a mental health counselor fit the perfect niche for this need and I love it! I loved being able to love on these women and children tonight. They are not insignificant or too small in God’s eyes. They are not alone. They are found in Christ. They are cherished and blessed, and so are we!

Here is my latest lyric video that speaks to this exact message, So Hard To Find. We are all in this together. We are all equal in God’s eyes and dearly loved.

So Hard To Find

This is a tough topic to consider and as well to live out. There is a fine line in our faith of being broken and living victorious, but may I suggest that if you are living “broken” in Christ, you are victorious.

There is a brokenness of our will that says, I need you God. I can’t do it my way anymore; I agree with you God that I am a sinner and I need your salvation. And when you first come to salvation in Christ this is where you need to be. But after you have been saved, there is still the process of being broken. It comes through the “working out of your salvation”; a continual dependency on the grace of God while living out the rest of your life here on earth. “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” Galatians 2:21, NIV We need to learn daily how to submit our will.

There is a type of humility that comes when we keep an accurate picture in our hearts and minds that we can’t live a moment without the grace of Christ in our lives. The moment we begin to think we can do anything without Him is the moment we need to realize that pride and self have just entered stage-left. As a result, we will reap natural consequences when we take our eyes off of Christ to take center stage. Every breath we have breathed and every next breath that we take has been given by Him. It is vital for us to always keep a sober view of ourselves and keep a close watch on how we live our lives. We do this by keeping a close comparison of our lives to the truth of Scripture and on Christ Jesus, not by comparing ourselves to others or what the world says we need or whom we should look like. Jesus Christ and His Word are our plumb lines.

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” Psalm 51:17, NIV

God wants us broken because this is where He does His best work through our lives: when we have a broken spirit. He detests the proud. Out of brokenness comes new life. We have never “arrived” as Christians here on this earth. Our wills will continue to battle with us here in this life, until we have our new heavenly bodies. We must continually “die to self” to allow the will of God in our lives. Don’t ever be too far from brokenness, if at all.

A daily living out of your life in brokenness says, “I am so grateful, Savior, that not a day, not a single moment goes by without it being by Your grace. Thank you Jesus.”

We can rejoice in that!

 

George Barna has just started a blog series on brokenness that you might find interesting:

http://www.georgebarna.com/2012/04/the-maximum-faith-series-article-1-the-importance-of-brokenness/