Psalm 51:17: “My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.”

Once we had a young pet, our little cat Malinka, who got involved in an accident, which left her with just a few more hours to live. She died in the course of the night before we could see our veterinarian. Malinka had crawled into a corner of our bedroom where she would breathe her last. Animals know when it’s their time to go.

Everybody is familiar with the concept of change, which requires saying goodbye to one thing to make room for another. This is always easier said than done, especially when we are not ready to let go. Goodbyes may hurt, but life is impossible to live without changes. If we cannot leave when it’s time to go then we end up being stuck.

When we are going through the motions because our life has been turned upside down we have to remember that garden soil too is turned upside down – and to what purpose? – We prepare the soil for the new seed. While going through tough times is all a puzzle to us, brokenness is no reason to give up, but to look up.

Among the 66 books of the Bible, the book of Psalms has always stood out to me. Similar to a cry room in a public building, where people take their babies or small children for privacy reasons, that’s how God’s children take their worries and cares into their personal prayer closet. Venting to the Lord is the best therapy when it comes to brokenness and pain. God has always been very close to the brokenhearted. As a matter of fact, He is closest when we are at our lowest. He is right there with us when we need Him most, whether we can feel His presence or not (Psalm 34:18):

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

Instead of trying to piece it all together on our own, let’s protect our sanity by letting God catch our broken pieces. We are safe in His hands. Let Him heal our wounds, work with us through our pain, and help us in our distress.  Broken in God’s hands, He can mend us so we can rise again and embrace a new tomorrow.

Broken world
Broken dreams
Alone in the crowd
Unspoken fears
Unspoken anger
Just acting out
Can’t see the light in the night
Don’t understand the events of the day
But there’s the hand of the living God
Holding me in the midst of it all”               
(Basically Two, Bill & Evelyn Snyder)

Psalm 40:8: “I desire to do your will, my God; your law is within my heart.”

Broken pieces scattered all over the floor – the result of me putting together a gingerbread house! Trying to follow instructions, I built this little house that was supposed to be held together by gooey sugar paste. Clearly, that didn’t work out! We sometimes make a mess of things because we rely on our weakness rather than on our God-given strengths. I’m not exactly crafty, so you get the picture!

Not unlike my failed gingerbread house, this world is badly broken and hurts in many places, but it’s still a world full of wonder and beauty. A lot has to do with God’s restorative power. The reason for passion, love and life is God’s Spirit blowing around the world igniting new ideas, openness, friendships, peace, and hope. He is able to raise the proverbial Phoenix from the ashes. He puts us back together, broken as we are, when we make a mess of things and are at the end of our rope.

The world we see around us is based on God’s ability to see in the dark. God had a vision when there was nothing yet to be seen (Genesis 1:2):

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

God took nothing and made something. Only God can do that. He is simply good at everything. Technically, He does not need anybody’s help, doesn’t he? And yet, apparently, He decided one day that He does not want to do things on His own. So here we are today. We are invited to partner up with God, can you believe it? He wants to do stuff with us. He wants to build a bright future. God has so many things in mind, and amazingly we are included in His plans.

Recognizing that we are building a better life in God’s company, the psalmist David wanted God’s laws of life written deep into his heart. He desired to be close to the Holy One who in turn longs to be near. God is not far from us. He is more involved in our lives than we often give Him credit.

Essentially, our desire to be with God gives us wings. Together we set out to create something new. We contribute to beauty in this world, and we also contribute to making things around us better. The eternal flame, the Spirit of God, is alive and well in us when we walk with Him.

Jesus has many names. “Prince of Peace” is one. “Wonderful” is another. Opening our hearts to Mr Wonderful, we have God’s law of life deeply embedded into our hearts. And what a beautiful thing that is!