Blessed, Broken, Given

Blessed, Broken, Given

I love a campfire. Perhaps it’s the crackling and popping sounds or the smell of burning cedar. Maybe it’s the way the immediate area is filled with an amber glow casting shadows into the surrounding darkness. The feel of the warmth that breaks the chill after sunset. All of it is a gift to me. Yet, if my senses are to thoroughly enjoy all of this, the wood must be wholly consumed.

It is the same with bread. The amazing aroma that fills the house while it is baking. The steam that rises as the fresh crust is broken. The taste and texture. The joyful look on my wife’s face as she breaks off a piece and gives it to me to appease my appetite. It strikes me that in either case, all my senses are fully engaged while something is burning or being broken. “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24).

Jesus told the crowd of sign seekers in John chapter 6, “Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” This “life” Jesus speaks of, is abundant life. That same life which fills our soul to overflowing so we too may be poured out.

In her book, “The Broken Way” Ann Voskamp writes, “The art of giving is believing there is enough love in you, that you are loved enough by Him, to be made enough love to give. For God so loved that He gave…”

Jesus knew He was wholly loved by the Father and was willing to do all that the Father asked of Him, “For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of Him who sent Me” (verse 38). In order to accomplish that, Jesus must wholly give Himself. He must be willing to be broken so we can be filled.

Voskamp continues, “Is there any word more powerful than giving? Thanksgiving. Forgiving. Care-giving. Life-giving. Everything that matters in living comes down to giving…The love of God always gives, always breaks itself and gives…”

Prior to sharing the Last Supper and instituting the New Covenant, Jesus washed the feet of His disciples. Afterward, He would say to them, “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done.” (John 13:14,15).

This was only one example and a very simple one at that! An example to serve with no regard to how lowly the task. A task so much easier than the next examples: how to take up your cross, how to willingly be broken and how to be wholly given.

We are to do this for one another just as He has done. It is a most beautiful act of worship when the Body of Christ gives itself to serve one another. It fills my senses, fills me with love and inspires me to give another piece of myself because there is more love to give.

(Voskamp, Ann, The Broken Way, p.67)

 

To Consider …

  • What fills you to the point of spilling over? Did it come from God?
  • Have you given yourself to the simplest tasks that the Body may be blessed? Inspired?
  • Are you willing to be broken and given?
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Comments

  1. Good morning and thank you Pastor Steve perfect words for today. Your question of what fills me to overflowing is an easy answer – and I know it is from God – worshipping through music. It is hard to explain unless you yourself have experienced it- it is a feeling of exactly that spilling over and flowing out – I think of the song that I sang at Kathryn’s mom’s memorial – the one section that speaks so loud to me is this:

    Oh And when the love spills over and music fills the night
    And you can’t contain your joy inside
    Then dance for Jesus dance for Jesus
    Dance for Jesus and live

    Believe me dancing is NOT a gift I have so in my heart I change it to sing for Jesus. And spill over is such a good word – it is exactly how it feels so full of music and praise that it just bubbles out (excuse me lol) and flows through to reach those who are doing the same praising the Lord!! It can’t be contained – I swear it comes from the depth of my toes and upward and almost feels like you’ll explode from the love you are experiencing.

    Happy Thursday my church family !

    • I can often see that when you sing Joy. And it is a gift that you share that flows from your heart. Thanks for pouring it out!

    • Kathryn Boisvert : February 8, 2018 at 8:56 am

      Thank you for sharing that ,Joy. I too, experience that same sensation of the Holy Spirit’s filling every inch, crevice in my body my inner being to overflowing when I sing for him and for his glory!

  2. As I have just finished reading what fills me to overflowing, my response is being available to family in their time of need, both biological & Christian. As I received a call about my brother in Ca having a fall, I have the desire of wanting to be there to help them through. However I do realize this is not around the corner and I do have to guard my heart and trust that if this is God’s plan, He will make it known. As they lost their son not so long ago, my sister in law is so very afraid of being alone, which causes me to question their salvation. My brothers daughter is there to assist but she is not my SIL’s biological daughter.
    When the Lord has used me to overflowing in the past, I have no words to describe the fullness of His spirit & outpouring of His love in my heart for them even when I am out of my comfort zone. I know now that the many tragedies in my life have been used by God to draw me to Our Father who uses these kinds of things to pour out His Spirit and love to others in their times of need.
    These blogs are above and beyond in preparing us for what God has for us daily. Thank you all.

  3. Whenever I have an opportunity to be used in ministry, I am pushed past myself and pressed deeper into the source, Jesus. It may be a planned time, like serving in J-ROCK, or it could be an unexpected phone call from someone hurting and in need of the gift of compassion. It could be as simple as offering a ride to someone without transportation. It could work in sync with my schedule or be downright inconvenient. In every instance it involves my wholehearted surrender to His Holy Spirit if it is to like a sweet aroma to my heavenly Father and of lasting, eternal value ( as opposed to wood, hay, or stubble ). Being able to read and participate in these daily blogs is truly a blessing!

  4. Thank you Pastor Steve! One of the things you asked us to consider is: have you given yourself to the simplest tasks that the Body may be blessed? Inspired?

    Sometimes the “simplest things” may” not feel like they can possibly be a “blessing to the Body” because they are “so simple.” We may find ourselves saying, “Hey, it’s so simple, anyone can do it!” Whether it’s preparing a bulletin, cleaning, singing, saying hello and welcoming a new visitor, giving a hug, spraying down the toys the little ones use in the nursery (oh, how I miss my friend Patricia, who did this every week. I’m sure it was a blessing to all the moms and dads who’s little ones stayed healthy, even if they didn’t know it was being done!) We need to realize that WHATEVER we are doing, we need to do it as unto the Lord. (Col. 3:23) We also need to understand that when we are responding to the prompting of the Spirit, and being obedient, no matter what/how “small” it is or may feel to us, it will be a blessing to others.

  5. David Medeiros : February 8, 2018 at 10:44 pm

    Great thoughts P Steve and challenging questions. I believe it was a statement that Oswald Chambers said in one of his devotionals, not sure of the exact wording but the thought was something along these lines. The Lord blesses those who remain faithful and persevere through the everyday seemingly mundane responsibilities of life. Those little things we do that can have a powerful impact on the people the Lord brings into our sphere of influence we may only realize when we reach glory. What we must be intentional about is checking our motives so we honor Him and that is who people see and are drawn to. Gal. 6:9, ” And let us not grow weary of doing good for due season we will reap, if we do not give up.”

  6. Karen-Ann Lima : February 9, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    JOY and deep gratitude fills me to overflowing. I have known His love and contentment that is steady, abiding, and real.I have firsthand seen God bring my family through valleys and yet the more He taught us to rely on Him, the deeper the joy, peace, and trust grew. He has placed me in a work situation now in which I occasionally get to allow that peace and joy to be shared with people in crisis and I am grateful for a couple of times, late in a shift as a scared, confused older person was crying and lonely, I felt the urge to pray over them and often see immediate peace cross their face.
    I daily have memories of the real JOY on so many of my Haitian friends faces despite how harsh their situations daily are. I have been privileged there time and time again to see true worship from their hearts as they wholly depend on their Father in ways we never dream to here in our prosperity. Their inner joy spills over in song, dance, hugs, and sweet smiles. Truly the joy of the Lord Nehemiah spoke of is our strength.

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