We ended yesterday’s post by asking a question.
How could God be using the broken places in your life?
I firmly believe God uses everything–every little thing–we go through for our growth, or for the good of others, or for His glory. Or, for all three! I’m convinced He doesn’t waste one single thing we experience on this earth. And, what we experience in this life prepares us for our life in eternity.
Today we’re peering into a story in scripture to see a real-life example of how Jesus met a woman in her brokenness, but didn’t leave her there.
Read John 4:4-30. You can read The Message translation here.
Would you say this unnamed Samaritan woman had broken places in her life? Imagine for a moment her life… just from the details given to us in this passage. Try to stand in her shoes for a few minutes. Attempt to capture her emotions and thoughts as she spoke with the Savior of the world.
We can glean much from this account, can’t we?
Jesus met the woman, right where she was at.
She was a Samaritan. Jesus was a Jew. Jews did not associate with Samaritans. She had 5 husbands, and the man living with her was not her husband. Did they die? Did they leave her? Either way, imagine losing 5 husbands. Jesus met her in her broken places, without condemnation. He similarly does that for us, too!
Jesus met her in her mess.
The woman drew water at noon. Why noon? Genesis 24:11 says women drew water in the cool of the evening. Drawing water was the social highlight of a woman’s day. Maybe she came at a time to avoid other women? Maybe she was an outcast? We don’t know for sure. But, we do know no one is an outcast to Jesus. He meets us in our messes.
Jesus met her to spur her on in her faith.
The woman had a head knowledge of her people’s past (Jacob and his well) and knew the prophesied Messiah was coming, but meeting Jesus allowed that knowledge to sink deep which became the seeds of her faith in Jesus. That happens to us, too, when we spend time reading God’s Word and talking to Jesus. Jesus grows our faith in Him.
Jesus met her to not leave her unchanged.
Even though she skirted the issue about her husband (or non-husband), Jesus prompted her to face her sins and mistakes. He wouldn’t leave her as she was. He doesn’t leave us unchanged either. When we face our sins and mistakes, healing begins, and hope appears.
Jesus transformed her life.
He prompted her to learn from the past, to let go of it, and to step forward into a life full of Him. Just as the woman left her pot at the well to go and tell others, certainly, we are called to do the same. To leave our pots and go tell others of how He has transformed your life and mine.
Our broken places, however, are not the end of our story!
It gets even more amazing! Continue reading John 4:39-42.
God used this woman, this imperfect, broken, seeking woman, to impact the lives of others. Many came to believe in Jesus because of her words. Amazingly, God didn’t use a scholar or a qualified teacher. He didn’t use someone with an upright and righteous life. He used a broken woman, resembling you and me, to spread the good news about Jesus!
Our broken places are blessings that lead us to breakthroughs.
No, our broken places don’t define us, nor do they limit us. God uses them for our growth, for the good of others, and for His glory.
“God has sent me to give them a beautiful crown in exchange for ashes, to anoint them with gladness instead of sorrow, to wrap them in victory, joy, and praise instead of depression and sadness. People will call them magnificent, like great towering trees standing for what is right. They stand to the glory of the Eternal who planted them.” Isaiah 61:3 (Voice)
Likewise, God brings blessings from our brokenness and exchanges beauty for our ashes, gladness for sorrow, victory, joy and praise for depression and sadness.
So, friend, how could God be using your broken places for your growth, the good of others, or for His glory?
Above all, be encouraged in your broken places today. God is bringing good from them.
Some of this material was first shared at our Bring Your Own Bible and Beverage event, Beyond Brokenness, on October 29, 2018.
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