I see it all around. The very air we breathe is thick with the sound of it.
Sorrow hangs heavy. Need drives us to our knees.
People are crying out for grace ~ but they don’t even know it.
Souls weep silent into pillows when losses outweigh any gains and hopes wither and die.
What or who can save us from ourselves and the pain we have to press past on a daily basis?
When life breaks us apart, where do we go to be put back together again?
In my life, the answer may come quick and easy. But the living out? That’s a lifetime’s work.
Renewal and restoration cannot be rushed. Full and complete healing cannot be hurried.
Jesus saves. We know it. We read it. We believe it. We sing about it. And yet..
This world has a way of swallowing us whole and spitting us out. Broken people living fractured lives.
So what does grace look like?
It wears the face of Christ. It’s the very heart of God. Nothing weak or namby pamby about it.
This is grace:It’s solid, muscular, with bite crisp-clean into a bountiful harvest of real gritty righteousness. It floods and fills all the empty spaces of our existence with strength, power and might.
Living as we do in the tension between the ‘now but not yet’ of the Kingdom, we are people in transition, works in progress by God’s grace.
Much is changing and moving forward, and much still requires transformation to come.
I’m broken, fractured, full of holes,
splintered, wrecked right into my soul
Pieces from the past pierce and press sharp
tearing fierce into the tenderest of parts
Deep calls to deep in the thundering roar
of Your waterfall’s steady, refreshing pour
Wounds fester and hurts remain sealed
in a life crying out to be rescued and healed
Echoing chasms where Your voice is heard
and we drink thirsty of its life-giving Word
How do the variant themes unite as one
perfect melody, harmony and song?
Strung as pearls, lustre-reflecting beads
shine bright and pure in you and me
Discordant sounds may shatter the air around,
joy remains ~ as seed rooted to the ground
Stop. Slow down. Breathe. Listen closer. Pause a while.
Walk gentler. Carry lighter. Don’t forget to smile.
As to the question, “How do I make all the pieces fit?”, I think the answer is, we can’t do it ourselves. God never intended us to bear that burden. It’s too weighty for our frame.
And that’s a freeing statement. It opens the door to Holy Spirit intervention.
The shards of our shattered hopes and dreams become a marvellous mosaic in God’s hands.
When we take those broken pieces of our lives, frayed fabric of our days, torn edges of our thoughts, tangled threads of our theology, gaps and holes in our flawed and imperfect understanding ~ all become sacrificial surrender, holy offering, and a handing over to the Master Potter and Architect of our souls.
He alone can fully mend, heal, renew and restore to better than it was before. We seek, ask, do our part, trust, rest, and leave the outcome up to Him.
It isn’t easy. Everything inside cries out to know and understand beforehand. Relinquishing control is a challenge.
Resting is a conscious choice, and the best way of allowing God’s peace to replace anxiety and stress.
“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” ~ Jeremiah 29:11
19 thoughts on “Putting the pieces together”
Joy, your posts always make me stop and think. A powerful message written with eloquence. There’s such music to your writing that I keep turning these sentences over and over in my head. Thank you!
It seems I can’t help writing thought-provoking posts, Angie! I’m grateful if God uses these words to bless and encourage others. Your perceptive writing leaves me with a clearer vision of God in the everyday things of life and a growing desire to ‘listen to my life’. It’s lovely that we can encourage and support one another on our faith journey. Blessings 🙂 x
The already, but not yet. Yes, that’s the heart of it. We’ve been waiting for 9 months to find a house and now that we have, with just two weeks until closing, I’m finding that the already, but not yet-ishness of it is just about killing me! It seems to me, that in these spaces we are in need of being delivered, gently and compassionately into the new.
Kelly, I sympathise with you in your predicament. So often God seems to bring us right to the edge of desperation before He acts in a way we can’t miss. Although we know God is never late (in His own perfect timing), it can feel to us that He’s never early either! Hang in there, friend. Rescue and help are on the way. And I truly see where you are coming from with, “It seems to me, that in these spaces we are in need of being delivered, gently and compassionately into the new”. Amen! May God bring you through in such a fashion and arm you with strength to enjoy the new territory you will soon inhabit. Blessings and prayers. 🙂 x
Love the message in this piece, Joy. “The shards of our shattered hopes and dreams become a marvellous mosaic in God’s hands.” You’ve put into words what our hearts are often unable to share.
Thank you, Kim. It’s lovely to meet you! I really appreciate you stopping by and sharing your insights on the things that spoke to you here. We hold on in hope of seeing change and so often feel the picture is blurred and indistinct, forgetting that God sees and uses everything we go through. All is gift. All is grace. Not a crumb is wasted. One day, we too will have a sense of the wonderful mosaic He has made out of our brokenness. Blessings 🙂
“We can’t do it ourselves. God never intended us to bear that burden. It’s too weighty for our frame.” Oh, Joy, thank you for this reminder. I do so hope it is true that God doesn’t intend for us to make everything fit on our own. Because I can’t.
Elena, this is something I need to remind myself about again and again! As a chronic illness sufferer I am always trying to do far more than I’m really capable of. Our stubborn independence can make surrendering challenging. But once we yield, we find great relief in the handing over and can learn to relax in fully trusting God to take care of everything we have given over to Him.
His ways are higher than our ways, likewise His understanding and wisdom far exceeds our own. Once we really believe and receive this truth we will be able to rest easy in trusting God above ourselves. It takes time, but it will get easier with practice! Blessings and love 🙂 x
“As to the question, “How do I make all the pieces fit?”, I think the answer is, we can’t do it
ourselves. God never intended us to bear that burden. It’s too weighty for our frame”
Yes, yes. I love this. But how we (I) try.
Carol, you are not alone in wanting to carry each load that comes your way. I struggle in this area too, as do so many. It often takes a stumble, fall and buckled knees givng way before we wake up to the fact that the burden we are carrying is too big for us and one which God stands ready, open armed, to willingly take and carry for us. Though we have a tendency to want to pick it all up again, it helps to recognise that our weakness is nothing to be ashamed of. It provides opportunity for God to show Himself strong on our behalf. Each broken piece of our lives will be worked into His plans and all will be marvellous beyond our comprehension. Blessings of peace to you, friend, as you seek to rest in Him.:)
Yes, this exactly: “The shards of our shattered hopes and dreams become a marvellous mosaic in God’s hands.” Thank you for the wrestling and the blessings of words. Coming from Diana’s…
Thank you for stopping by, Summer. We are all learning and growing as we wrestle with the questions that have no easy answers. Bless you for visiting and encouraging me in the process. 🙂
As usual, beautiful and rich, Joy. Thanks so much for your faithful reading and interaction. I value your contributions more than you know. And yes, this surrender bit – it’s the hardest piece of all.
Thank you, Diana. I value your insights and kind encouragement more than you know. Yes, surrender is always a sticking point isn’t it? We give piecemeal, even though God lavishly gives His all. Bless you for stopping by, friend. 🙂
Beautiful post – grace in the midst of brokenness!
Thanks for sharing at Essential Fridays.
Mel from Essential Thing Devotions
Thank you, Mel! There is much to learn about God’s grace in our brokenness. Blessed to link up with you at Essential Fridays. 🙂
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Your writing is beautiful, Joy. I especially liked: ‘Discordant sounds may shatter the air But joy remains~ as seed rooted to the ground’…just lovely… and powerful. It is so true that the Lord makes us strong ‘in the Valley.’ I very much enjoyed reading this post. Warm regards, Carol
Thank you, Carole! I’m so pleased this resonated with you, my friend. Blessings of peace and strength to you. 🙂 x