Our lives are far from perfect. We often feel like our lives are so far off that mark that God could never use us to minister to anyone. However, Jesus takes what little we feel we have to offer and multiplies it for His Glory. This message gives us a fresh perspective on the amazing things God can do with our broken lives if we allow Him.
Our Brokenness, God’s Glory
Margie Auman – Mosaic Rockford – June 28th, 2015
Recently as I was talking with a friend she began sharing about how she was so frustrated & angry with God. It seemed as though nothing in her life was working out. She has been sober for almost 2 years, has dedicated her life to Him & has been working hard to follow & obey Him. But she has no job, until recently she had no place to live & no money for even just the necessities in life like toilet paper, deodorant, and let’s be real – feminine products. She is struggling with what the purpose of her life even is. She questioned why would God allow these circumstances? Can you relate? Have you been there? Where you feel like you try & you try & you try & nothing gets better. I know I’ve been in this same place. I’ve questioned God, & I’ve been so angry with Him that I could just scream. But what I want you to know and remember is that if we will stop being angry with God long enough to ask Him, “What am I supposed to learn from all this?” it is then that we can experience true healing & freedom. He will allow our messes to be His message. He will take our trash & turn it into something glorious – IF we let him. He will help us find His treasures when we open our eyes to see them.
I want to read a story that’s actually found in all 4 gospels in the New Testament. It’s a story that you might be familiar with. It’s the feeding of the 5000. So we are going to read
John 6:1-13 (4th book of New Testament)
If we look at this same story in Matthew 14 and all the events leading up to it we learn a lot of details that will help us. (because gospels are 4 different pics of the same thing) Read Mt 14:6-14 (?15-21 too)
Herodias was married and left hubby to be with his brother Herod. JTB told her this was wrong and that made her mad.
Jesus & JTB were friends.
Why read this –
- Jesus’ frame of mind. Very dear friend just got killed. Imagine the depth of Jesus’ sadness. (Mt 14:13 – he withdrew to a solitary place when he heard)
- Jesus was in pain & yet he had compassion on people & healed them.
- How do you respond when someone dear to you passes away, or when your so called best friend drops you or you’ve lost your job or your spouse says I don’t love you anymore? (Give emotions to the Lord who comforts or bury them inside & get angry or depressed?)
- I know my first response isn’t to go & help others when I’m in pain. – Share of last 6 months – MFP, Gary & family, 3 car accidents, Morgan/school
I was so angry with God. I was very hurt & disillusioned & questioned my relationship with him and my ability to hear his voice leading /guiding me. I felt betrayed. I felt like everything & everyone I loved was being taken away. But I’m not the only one who’s ever been in pain.
Jesus was & yet He ministered to people & obeyed the Father’s call instead of turning away.
Job was in pain – everything taken (family, business, friends turn on him, etc)
BUT he learned that it’s not the gifts we are given in life but
The GIVER of the gifts is what’s important.
That’s what I learned – that I must worship the one who gives me life & breath. I must value HIM over the things and people He gives me. I learned that maybe even when life is so hard that it just sucks – I have to keep my eyes on Jesus and minister to others instead of feeling sorry for myself.
In the end, everything was restored to Job & he was blessed with even more. I feel like God has been restoring my life & healing my hurts as well. He’s moved us to a new home, my daughter will be going to a new school where she’s already made friends. He’s building strong new friendships in my life. But mostly He’s showing me what’s really important is that no matter what my circumstances are HE is all that truly matters.
Now back to our original story in John. There’s one verse I want you to pay attention to – vs 9. “Here is a boy with 5 small barley loaves and 2 small fish, but how far will they go among so many?”
The assumption is that it won’t be enough to feed all these people – 5000 men. (Plus we learn from the verses in Mt that that number didn’t include all the women & children too.) But it turns out that not only was there enough food for everyone but there were plenty of leftovers too. 12 baskets as a matter of fact!!! So when you question what difference your life, your gifts, & your talents make – Remember that with God ALL things are possible!
I once read a quote about this passage that really impacted me.
Ruth Stull – missionary from Peru – “If my life is broken when given to Jesus it is because pieces will feed a multitude but a loaf will satisfy only a little lad.”
She was saying that when our messed up, broken lives are handed over to Jesus, that he can use our hurts & messes to help thousands of people, just like these loaves satisfied thousands. But if my life is completely perfect – I can help very few people. Why – because who can relate to someone with no problems???
16 years ago ended an 8 year battle with very severe depression.
I hate my life & I wish I was dead – my response to stress.
Tammy’s (neighbor & friend) question – What is God trying to teach you?
Humbled myself & said – ok God if I have to go through this please don’t let it be for nothing.
Ministered to many who can relate to depression.
People in the Bible understand too! 1Cor 2:8b
Doesn’t matter what the sin or situation or hurt is, God can use it. I’ve done plenty of stupid things in my life & experienced a lot of hurts but God has blessed me with opportunities to use those hurts & sins to glorify Him by helping others.
But we mistake blessing for prosperity.
Blessing does not mean we never face STRUGGLES.
Mary, the mother of Jesus, was blessed but also probably publicly ostracized. Going through struggles doesn’t mean we aren’t blessed. It doesn’t mean God doesn’t care. On the contrary, I think this is God drawing us closer to Him as we learn that we desperately need Him & his love, mercy & grace in our lives.
I know these aren’t the typical points people draw out of these verses but I wanted to share that God does love you even if you can’t always understand his plan.
SONG – Blessings by Laura Story
Did you catch what she said at the end (of the song)?
“What if my greatest disappointments or the aching of this life is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy.
What if trials of this life – the rain, the storms, the hardest nights are your mercies in disguise?”
As I close, I hope you’ll remember today that God does passionately loves you. Even if you can’t see it or feel it. I hope you’ll ask yourself the hard questions – like Lord what can I learn from my situation and who can I minister to? I hope you’ll see the blessings in your trials & choose to love God more than loving His gifts. Only when we turn our lives over to Him will we experience true healing & freedom. Only Jesus can take our worn down, messed up lives & create a beautiful story. The question is – will you let him?