I spend most of my days with children. Some days I am with children who are functional. Other days I am with children who function differently. Society has lots of labels for this second set, labels that are mostly polite ways for saying they are damaged. We live in a world where broken-ness is not tolerated. Instead it is something to be defined, analysed and fixed. This is fairly easy to do when you wear your damage at a surface level – when the way you walk or talk or behave is clearly different from the way everyone else does. But what about when your malfunction is not on the surface? What about what your broken-ness is so deep inside that no one can see it? Or so deeply woven into who you are that you don’t realize it is broken-ness until you try to untangle the reasons you behave the way you do?
The truth is that many of us are walking around damaged. We are broken windows that look fine until someone tries to open them. We are buildings that look great at a distance, but whose cracks become obvious on closer inspection. We are people with broken hearts, weakened spirits, traumatized lives. We cover our invisible wounds with band-aids of inattention, and allow the scar tissue of defensiveness to grow over them. But these solutions don’t get us anywhere. They only keep us hurting ourselves and others.
The thing is, all broken-ness comes from sin. Sometimes our own, sometimes someone else’s. At the end of the day however, it really doesn’t matter. Whatever the source, God is the ultimate handy-Man. He wants to do a renovation on our lives. He wants to get inside and work on the damages that keep us living below our potential and living outside of His joy. But like all renovation projects, God’s work on us will not always be pretty. He wants to fix the weaknesses at our core, but that means peeling back the layers of self-reliance and defensiveness that we have put down over the years. Sometimes it hurts, but our healing is waiting at the end of it all.
I don’t know what you are going through at this time. But I pray that you will be open to God’s renovation on your life. In the coming weeks I hope I will be brave enough to share some of God’s renovations in me. Until then I pray you will let Him heal you in your broken places, even when it hurts to do so. Accept Him however He comes to you, through whoever He comes to you. His hands of love may push into our broken-ness, but it is only so He who designed us in the first place, can put us back together again.
So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel.
But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the
potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.
– Jeremiah 18:3-4