Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Broken-Hearted? !!!

"My heart is broken!" Those are not just words dramatically uttered by a teen "drama queen." "She/he has a broken heart ... . " Heard that or said that?

It is interesting that when someone goes for open heart surgery to repair some mal-function or mal-formation of the heart, no one talks about that person's heart being broken. (Or, at least, I have never heard it expressed that way.) Yet, in a physical sense, the person is going for heart surgery because something is "broken."

But, the broken heart is something else entirely. What are some of the things we attribute as causes for a broken heart? Loss of "true" love? Loss of someone special and dear? Loss of a pet? Loss of a valued possession? Loss of a job, child, spouse, parent or friend? Loss in some major aspect of life? It is a long list. This is only the beginning. The "causes" are almost as numerous as the hearts that are broken.

Indeed it is true that all of the above causes and many more do contribute to the condition we label "broken heart." It is a real condition, and it happens to just about everyone in life!

AND once one's heart is "broken," there is no glue that can fix it. Rather there's something even better!

We all experience the pain of a broken heart. Then we have a choice of what we do and where we go from there. Do we crash and burn? Do we crawl behind a wall of some sort, cover our heads and cower there licking our wounds? Do we spend time lashing out at others so they see our pain and experience pain we inflict? OR do we turn our focus toward the One (Jesus) who is in the business of fixing broken hearts? Only He can restore this kind of brokenness!

We come to Jesus. We simply tell Him that we are broken and broken-hearted and need His restoring love. We ask for His help.

He doesn't take away the brokenness. He helps us use our own brokenness in outward focus toward others. A "broken heart" in the hands of Jesus is a heart that can reach out and love others more deeply than ever before due to the very brokenness we experience.

It is a wild and crazy paradox that broken hearts and broken people can be the tools God uses to restore other broken hearts and broken people in this broken world we live in! It is God's plan for reaching our world, our community, our "space" one heart at a time in relationship with God first and then with other "broken hearts."

Dr. Bob Pierce who founded World Vision and later Samaritan's Purse (now the ministry of Franklin Graham) once wrote in the front of his Bible: "Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God." If you know Bob Pierce's story, it is full of brokenness and pain. Dr. Richard Halverson, pastor of Fourth Presbyterian Church in the greater Washington DC area and later Chaplain to the U.S. Senate once said, "Bob Pierce functioned from a broken heart." And the record is clear that Bob Pierce functioned very brokenly at times from that broken heart - which encourages me, but God still used him in a powerful way to build God's eternal kingdom.

Our own personal brokenness only has value as it reaches out to others to touch their brokenness and to point them to the only One who can take brokenness and bring restoration! That's what we are doing at a Restoration Church in the South Hills of Pittsburgh! If you are broken and you know it, then come gather with us as we all experience God's wonderful grace of restoration together!

No comments: