Beautifully Broken

Over Spring Break, while at the beach with my husband’s family, I had the opportunity to take a walk down the beach.
As I walked, this is what I saw.
shells on the beach
This tide was coming in.
Just watching the waves and the water hitting the sand was really beautiful.
All week long, my sister-in-law had come in from her walks with beautiful, whole shells.
She even found a big, completely whole conch shell.  (This is where I should go ahead and admit that I had been
secretly envying her finds all week.)
So, as I walked I hoped to find something, anything whole and beautiful.  But instead, I found one, then another shell fragment.
shell 2    shell4   shell 3  shell 1
As I picked them up,  I thought “wow! these are really beautiful”
And then, like a whisper in my heart I heard,  “Beautifully Broken”
It wasn’t audible.  It wasn’t loud. But it was meaningful.
Immediately I had the thought that the Lord wants me to be this way to Him.
After all, He was broken for me — for us.  Isaiah 53:5 says:

But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.

Wounded, crushed, chastisement, stripes, ….  all those created physical brokenness.
Is God asking that of us?  I doubt it.  But he is asking for us to be humble, repentant.  Psalm 51:17 tells us this:

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart,  O God,  you will not despise.

When you read the definition of contrite, it means Literally, worn or bruised….and the definition of broken is parted by violence; rent asunder; infirm; made bankrupt. (both definitions taken from the Webster 1828 Dictionary)
Does the Lord want us bruised, worn, rent asunder, bankrupt?
I don’t think so.  What He wants is our humility.  He wants us literally heart broken over our sin.  He wants us to be repentant.
In the Old Testament, they had to sacrifice animals for their sins.  In the New Testament, Christ was our sacrifice when He was broken for us.
My prayer is that, like the shells on the seashore, I would be aware of my sin.  That I would be repentant.  That I would be beautifully broken.
Joy to You!
By the way, as I walked and talked to the Lord that day, I did find a few beautiful shells that were whole and complete.
 shell collage

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