Recently, I started reading a book called, “The End of Me” written by Kyle Idleman. So far, it has been an incredible book about the beauty of being broken in the presence of God. Jesus becomes real in our lives when we are broken for Him. It is when we come to the end of ourselves that God shows up to pick up the pieces of our lives to put them back together one-by-one. In Luke 9:24, it states that “whoever loses life will find it.”
In this book, the author portrays a beautiful picture of what brokenness really looks like. In Luke 7, Jesus is having dinner with a religious leader, Simon. Simon has disregarded all tradition by not greeting Jesus with a kiss on the hand, washing his feet, and anointing his head with oil. Simon is rich and the people feared him so he intentionally did not honor Jesus as his guest in his home. Simon wanted to be the master of his home, not Jesus. At one point in the middle of dinner, a sinful woman enters Simon’s home uninvited. She heard through the crowds Jesus was in town and was having dinner with Simon and other religious leaders. While everyone else looked at her with judgment, Jesus looked at her with unconditional love. She did not focus on the disgruntled faces around her and allowed Jesus’ love to overwhelm her. You see, Jesus saw “her as beautifully broken” while the others saw her as tainted and untouchable (“The End of Me”).
The woman kept her eyes focused on Jesus and knelt at Jesus’ feet. She began to weep uncontrollably and, with her tears, she cleaned His feet. She let down her hair and dried His feet. She then took an entire bottle of perfume and poured it on Jesus’ feet. In this moment, “she offers all that she has, because He has changed all that she is” (“The End of Me”). A prostitute, known for our profession, “has become a living embodiment of cleansing” (“The End of Me”). Jesus tells her that her sins are forgiven (Luke 7:48). Her brokenness is recognized, and she is made whole again. What an incredible imagery of being made whole in Christ in just one moment.
“Brokenness often overflows with hidden beauty. It is redemptive by design” (author unknown). The moment Jesus forgave the woman from all her sins, it was redemption. She was not ashamed of her past; she boldly walked into a religious leader’s home to have a moment with Jesus. This Biblical story reminds us to never be ashamed to bear our scars in the church or around our family and friends. Our past tells a story of redemption–of who we were and who we are today.
If you look closer in the story of Luke 7, we see that Simon is carrying around brokenness as well. He is so arrogant about his status that he refused to greet his guests with traditions. He does not respect who Jesus is and only invited Jesus to dinner out of obligation. Instead of receiving a blessing from Jesus, he received a rebuke from Him. The sinful woman knew that she was broken and needed Jesus’ forgiveness, but Simon, on the other hand, did not recognize his brokenness.
Romans 3:23 states that we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” The truth is, we are all broken people who need Jesus. We can complete this sentence: “We are the people who _________________________________________” (“The End of Me”). Who have debt, ignored the hurting, looked down on others, etc. We are the kind of people who wants to avoid being honest with ourselves. “Most of us have some conception, in our heart to hearts, that a lot of the pieces never seem to be mended. But we will go to great lengths to avoid the full, honest embrace of our condition” (“The End of Me”). “The only solution for being broken is brokenness. Brokenness is the way to wholeness.” (“The End of Me”).
When was the last time you recognized your brokenness and knelt at Jesus’ feet overwhelmed by His love for you? Are you avoiding the brokenness that keeps on pulling you down and telling you lies about yourself? It’s time to bear your scars and be real with God and others about your past or present life. It’s time for you to be whole again through Christ.
“God, take my broken pieces and remold them into what seems best for you” (“The End of Me”). Lord, help me to be vulnerable and bear my scars so I can be mended and whole again. In Your Name, Amen!