In my spiritual life of about 10 yrs now I have got the opportunity to meet many people who are spiritual and who are leading a life worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There has been few people with whom I got very close so that I could know them in a better way. I can’t say I became close with all the people but there were few who made an impact in my life at times. The spiritual characters I now have were developed or motivated by their life. Some were men of faith, some were strong in their doctrine and belief, some were men with a heart for missions, some had a pastoral heart, some were born motivators and also few who had nothing special worth mentioning but still had some thing which separated them from the group. The person who most impressed me and who still holds lot of respect was an ordinary person who had this undying spirit of not murmuring or saying anything against God even when he is going through tough times. He was not an outspoken person nor one who was first choice for preaching. He always used to smile and was always interested in things concerning the kingdom of God rather than his problems. I knew that he was going through much pain which I cannot explain here.
I could take out all my frustrations before him and also share my visions with him. Whenever I took a step of faith he was always there to backup and encourage me. When I look back I can say that out of the things I did for God, 90% won’t have happened if God wouldn’t have sent this Man of God into my life to stand with me and encourage me when everyone looked with suspicion whether things will succeed or not. A important lesson I learned out of this was that don’t always think that people seen on the pulpit or who is influential in churches are the best mentors you can get. It can be someone younger to you but it has to be someone in whom the spirit of God dwells.
Now what I want share here is something different. What was one common thing I found in all these people? Do they all woke up at 5:00 am and prayed? NO. So they all fasted in same way? No. Did they all clothed in same way? NO. Did they all read same number of bible chapters everyday? NO. Then what else expect the basic fundamental teaching of Jesus Christ.
I can say it as BROKENNESS. You may not believe but its the truth. Behind every mighty men/women of God there was this thing called as Brokenness. Are they all broken in same area? NO. But they all had some brokenness somewhere in their life. The people who saw them from outside always thought that they were perfect people who had no problems or worries. But the reality was and is that they have brokenness.
When I tried to understand this it was bit hard for me initially. But the more I meditated the Bible and try to reason with God I found that there is indeed a Goodness in Brokenness (All people may not agree with me). But its a fact.I want to put names of some people here from Bible. Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Jephthah, Ruth, Hannah, Samuel, David, Elijah, Elisha, Nehemiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Peter, Paul etc. Now if you will meditate on their life then one thing is evident that God used them mightily but they had brokenness.
Abraham had his anxious movements when asked to leave his country and go to a place which was not told to him. He lived years without a child. Time came when Ishmael came in his life. Then time of testing when he was asked to offer Issac. Jacob had to run for his life. Had to serve Laban for 20 yrs. Joseph was hated by own brothers and sold by them. He was innocent but still had to spend long years in jail. Was in jail on charges of attempted rape(In today’s terminology). Moses life started at a time when all boys born were killed and he was put in Nile river. He went from there to become Pharaoh’s son but soon had to flee from land because of a favor he did for God’s people. From Pharaoh’s palace he was in desert as a shepherd. What a tragedy and loss. After he brought people of Israel out of Egypt still had lot of struggles. Ruth became a widow. Hannah had to cry a lot and withstand lot of provoking and irritating. Jephthah was a prostitute’s son who was chased away from home by his brothers saying he was prostitute’s son. Samuel grew up in mist of Son’s of Eli( Hophni and Phinehas) who were wicked. He may had other pressures to follow them. David was fine till he was anointed. Then Bear and lion came against him. Had to fight Goliath. Was running initially from Saul and them from his own son Absalom. Committed Adultery. Elijah was in hiding for long time and had to run for his life. Nehemiah had to face challenges from Sambalat, Tobiah etc. Jeremiah was a weeping prophet who was lowered by ropes into the cistern; it had no water in it, only mud, and Jeremiah sank down into the mud. He was asked to put old rags and worn-out clothes under his arms to pad the ropes.He was pulled up with the ropes and lifted out of the cistern. Who was he- Whom God knew him before he was formed in his mother’s womb. Before he was born he was set apart and appointed as prophet to the nations. Daniel went to stay with lions. Peter had his disappointments. I don’t need to write about Paul. Apart from all persecution and other things he had to endure he had a thorn in his flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment him. He pleaded three times to Lord and was given the reply “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness“.
- Do you want to take a journey without knowing destination by faith with all problems or want God to bless you where you are?
- Do you want to settle in your land without any hardship. Not having the Bathel experience or Jabbok experience. Or face all hardship and inherit the promises of Abraham and Issac.
- Do you want to be in Jail on accusation of trying to molest your masters wife or would like to be an ordinary servant in his house without any problem. Other option is to become ruler of Egypt.
- Do you want to end your life as Pharaoh’s son in his palace or become the leader who took the people of Israel out of Egypt. Talked with God Face to face and saw the promised land from far off.
- Do you want to give birth to many sons whose name is not even mentioned in Bible or want to be the mother of Samuel whom all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized and attested as a prophet of the LORD.
- Want to settle in your home or want to be in hiding. Other options are Mount Carmel experience of fire coming down. Can also be the first man to raise a dead person.
- Be in King’s palace without any problem and end your life. Other option is go out and face threatening of people but still rebuild the broken walls of Jerusalem.
- Be happy and compromise on few matters here and there. But you are safe. Other option is go to lions den and finally the king declares that all people will serve the Lord whom you serve.
- Completed three missionary journeys and almost 14 Epistles and started church at various places. Easy option would have been to get healing and spent rest of life praising God and giving testimony that God healed you whenever you get a chance.
I can write many more questions but don’t think they are needed. John Wesley once said “The person who bears and suffers evils with meekness and silence, is the sum of a Christian man.” G. K.Chesterton says that “Jesus promised the disciples three things—that they would be completely fearless, absurdly happy and in constant trouble.” What Charles Kingsley had to say was “Pain is no evil, unless it conquers us.”
God does allows brokenness in peoples life. But as its says in Jeremiah 29: 11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Many times when we go through all pains in our life we think it is going to destroy us but no. God is breaking us so that he can mold and make us in the shape in which he wants us to be. You may not have answer to many things which are going on in your life right now expect the question- Why? Let me encourage by saying that God is in control of everything. As Paul says in 1 Cor. 10:13 “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it “.
Rejoice my friend the limit is not set by devil but by our God. He will never set the limits beyond what you can bear. Also he is preparing something which you never thought you will get in your life. May be for a purpose which God wants to accomplish through you only. May be God has seen you as Abraham or Joseph or Daniel or Paul or anyone whom God used to do things which others couldn’t do.
So there is Goodness in Brokenness!