Broken

     A.W. Tozer wrote, “It is doubtful whether God can bless a man greatly until He has hurt him deeply.” Those are difficult words to read and harder to comprehend. Honestly, we don’t want them to be true. But they are. At least that’s been my experience.

     My first significant memory of trauma and brokenness was in July of 1962. I was eleven, my younger brother was nine, and our baby sister was six weeks old. My angry mother drug me before my drunken father and shouted, “You need to decide right now who you want to live with, me, or this S.O.B. Because I am leaving him tomorrow.” And then she stormed off. I was left there alone to process something that no child should have to deal with. I loved both my parents. I didn’t want to make that choice, but I had to.

     I have experienced many other seasons of brokenness in the fifty-seven years that have transpired since that fateful day. But, do you know what I have learned in the process? God has used the brokenness in my life for my good and his glory!

     You see, God sometimes uses brokenness to remake us. For almost anything of value to be made, brokenness is involved in the process. A tree is broken and a house is built. Soil is broken and a crop is sown and grown. Grain is broken and bread is baked. People are broken and caring and compassionate believers are reborn. Often it is out of our brokenness that our greatest influence flows. Tozer was right. Often before God uses a man or woman greatly, he first takes them through seasons of brokenness.

     I recently read a story about a church that ordered new stained-glass windows for its sanctuary. All the windows arrived except for the largest panel that was to be installed at the front of the church. The congregation eagerly waited for this panel to be delivered. But when the large piece arrived, they found that the glass had been broken during shipping. The people were horrified. But then a skilled artist who was a member of the church asked if he could take the pieces and try to make a suitable replacement window out of them. In a short while, the artist unveiled the window he had created. The entire congregation agreed that the artist’s masterpiece was more beautiful than the original. What was broken was remade into something far better.

     God’s grace sometimes comes to us in ways we least expect. Grace is the glue that takes the pieces of our broken lives and binds them into something new and beautiful. It forms the welcome mat that declares to the repentant prodigals of this world, “Welcome home.” Grace is the scouring pad that cleans away the blotches of sin on our record so they are remembered no more. Grace is the promise that there is life after failure and hope for broken and rebellious people.

     Are you experiencing brokenness in your life right now? If so, my prayer is that the lessons I have learned over the years will be a comfort to you: Lesson #1: Nothing touches my life that does not first pass through the fingers of my heavenly Father. Nothing. Lesson #2: Everything I experience in life helps me to become a more sensitive, caring and effective servant. Everything.

Ahhh. The blessedness of brokenness.

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About the Author : Steve Sabol

Steve Sabol was born October 3rd, 1950 in Bristol, PA. He married Nancy Keller, the love of his life on July 12th, 1969. They will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in 2019. They have a son and a daughter, five granddaughters, and two great-granddaughters. Steve entered full-time pastoral ministry in August of 1980. He’s been a shepherd for nearly forty years. He moved to Lebanon twenty-nine years ago and today serves as one of Lifeway’s community pastors. Steve has been a musician for over fifty years and his favorite instrument is the guitar. Ministering to men in prisons, churches, rescue missions and community centers has been a passion of Steve’s for over ten years. He has spoken at over thirty men’s events across the country and sends out a daily inspirational email to over 6,000 men every day. He is currently writing a book titled “Connected” which should be available in the summer of 2019. Steve loves spending time with his bride, and staying busy for the King, changing the world one man at a time.

4 Comments
  1. William A Sabol February 26, 2019 at 8:32 am - Reply

    Very good brother. I find it hurtful to think of those times but I value the life experiences for they made me what I am today. God is the glue that put the pieces back together where they belong. You can’t even see the cracks anymore.

    • Stephen Sabol February 26, 2019 at 10:04 am - Reply

      Thanks, my dear brother. We went through that together, and emerged as more than conquerors. I love you.

  2. Ellen Sabol February 26, 2019 at 9:22 am - Reply

    I just sent this to my broken nephew Chris Connolly. Please pray and 1st he even reads it, 2nd he can relate to it and 3rd that he asks questions. He is an atheist. So 4th that he gets saved. ♥️

    • Stephen Sabol February 28, 2019 at 10:41 am - Reply

      Thanks, Ellen. I will be praying for your nephew. Hang tough!

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