Bella Vista Church of Christ

LIFELINES

05/17/2017

Randall Caselman

 

Responding To Broken Moments

 

  Broken Moments. We’ve all been there, and will be again; this is the way life comes at us. Jacob was his mother’s favorite, but he found himself working as a servant in Laban’s house. Joseph’s colored coat status gave way to a jail sentence in Egypt. Moses, the prince in a palace, became Moses, the shepherd in the Wilderness. He lived forty years with this brokenness before his Burning Bush assignment. Paul experienced the fall from being a “Hebrew of Hebrews” with Roman citizenship to a cold, damp, dark, prison cell.

 

  There comes a time when all of us will have to surrender our dreams to God and let Him deal with our current situation. Listen to Moses from the ninetieth Psalm. No doubt this Psalm was written during his forty years of wondering just what God had in mind for him: “Relent,O Lord; How long will it be? Have compassion on your servants. Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. Make us glad for as many days as You have allowed this affliction, for as many years as we have seen this trouble. May Your deeds be shown to your servants, Your splendor to their children. May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands.” Indeed, indeed, when life tumbles in, God can and will restore and establish us again! The question then is what should our attitude be so that God can work His will and way in us? Emerson wrote: "What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you." So, let us...

 

  Accept our situation. Admit where we are and what is happening to us. We tend to deny our condition or predicament, not wanting to accept the reality of the situation before us. The journey to help and healing must start with acceptance of what is happening to us. Denial is a dead end to learning from our hurt.

 

  Yield to the circumstances. Choose to surrender. When we collide with life’s unfairness, we always respond with “Why me, Lord?” “Why now?”


WHY?” Been there? Done that? Of course, we all have. Jesus asked the “why” question: “Why have You forsaken Me?” And there was no answer. Most often this question has no answer, so this leads us to begin bargaining with God. Instead of trying to bargain with Him, instead of trying to make a deal with Him, why not surrender? Why not ask; “Lord, what do You want me to learn from this situation?” “How can I use this experience in service to You and others?” “How can I glorify You in this pain?”

 

  Don’t you know that years later Moses was glad for his shepherding experiences in the Sinai Wilderness as he led, not sheep, but God’s people? This was Paul’s attitude with his thorn-in-the-flesh. He prayed for deliverance and it didn’t come as he envisioned. God’s answer was: “My grace is sufficient.” Later, we hear Paul say, “I delight in my weaknesses, insults, hardship, in persecution and difficulties. For when I am weak, I am strong.” You see, God can use our weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and difficulties, our broken moments, if we will surrender them to Him.

 

  Anticipate better times. Look to the future. Jacob and Paul had good reason to regret their past. Jacob had been a cheat and deceiver, Paul persecuted the early church; but God had a future for them in His kingdom, evidenced by Him giving them new names. It’s true, God is ready to take our brokenness and give us a new name in His Kingdom, but we must, like Jacob and Paul, forget the past: “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on to the goal to win the prize… To what God calls me toward.” Folk, we are here for a purpose. God has a plan for each of us. There are things He wants us to accomplish. Remember what Jesus said about the blind man in John chapter nine? “His blindness (brokenness) happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.” Wow! Can others see Jesus in me, the work of God in me, by the way I face my broken moments? Some of us might ask “But what if I’m not healed?” God has a much better time in mind. Indeed, as long as we cling to the past, we will be unable to take hold of the future God has in mind for us.

 

  Trust God. Above all, have faith. Reality does test our faith. David had his share of broken moments, and we hear him express his faith in the 23rd Psalm. Solomon wrote: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” John said: “everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.” When life tumbles in, broken moments come; we must not forget Paul’s statement in Romans eight: “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”

 

  We are like a loaf of French bread. If you poured hot butter over the loaf, it would simply run off. But if the bread is broken, the butter is absorbed into the bread. God speaks to us, remolds, remakes, reshapes, us through His Word, and through our life experience. And sometimes we must be broken for the Word and His Divine Providence to penetrate our heart. Amen?

 

  Our challenge is to use our Broken Moments to His honor and glory!

 

—RANDALL CASELMAN