Monday, November 4, 2013

A Well that Satisfies

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst.  Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” –John 4:13-14

There I stood, alone at the well.  I was hoisting away at the ropes.  My dry hands were crackling and popping, splitting like the dry, hot floor of the desert.  My hands were blistered from pulling up heavy buckets full of desert dust, hoping it would satisfy a tongue that was like an edgy rock.  As I was busy submerging my palm into my bucket, a man came up to me.  There at the well, the man asked why I was drawing from a well that would never satisfy.  Why shouldn’t I listen to him?  Wasn’t he the same man who told his follower’s to cast their nets on the opposite side of their fishing boats?  Didn’t these same follower’s take his advice, and find themselves with plenty of fish on the bow of their boat?  The man, Christ, told me to draw from another well.  It’s a well that quenches the thirsty and gives eternal life.  There by the well, this man spoke to me.  That day, I left that well.  And now, I’m drawing water. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Embracing Brokenness

Life teaches us to despise brokenness.  When something breaks, it becomes invaluable.  Broken things are worthless.  Often times, we will replace our broken things with new ones.  When we get our new things, we will toss the broken things aside.  They are not worth the time and energy needed to fix them.

Unfortunately, we do the same thing with people.  We don’t take the time to repair them when they become broken.  Without realizing it, we will toss them aside.  We become too busy to take in broken lives into the repair shop of our own heart’s and begin to work on them. 

Every time I think about broken things, I always come back to the woman who brought the alabaster jar of very expensive perfume to Jesus.  She broke the alabaster jar and poured the perfume over him.  I think this act was a picture of her life.  There was something beautiful about her.  Also, there was something valuable inside of her that was very costly.  Jesus was the only one who could see inside her and valued what was inside.  In many ways, she was as broken and useless as the broken alabaster jar that lay in pieces at their feet.  This woman’s body had been used by so many worthless and unfaithful lovers.  Yet, Jesus looked past all of this.  Even though she was broken, Jesus saw into her heart.  He saw her as something of value and of worth.  Jesus didn’t even reject her sacrifice.  Rather, he embraced it.

What this woman might not have known was that Jesus was about to be broken.  His body was about to be used and wasted on us.  This is the most beautiful and extravagant act.  His human alabaster jar was about to be broken and his very heart was about to be poured out for all of us.  For me, my heart cries out in shame because I’m not worth such an extravagant sacrifice.  Yet, he gives me all of himself.  Just think, all I have to give him is my love.  It will never be enough for one who is so beautiful.  But it’s all I have that is valuable.  It’s my perfume.  So I’m pouring it all on the one who deserves it and is worth it. 

When I look into his eyes, I know he values my poured out heart.  It will be what releases the fragrance of love for others to smell.  It is what awakens the desire in others to know him.  Jesus embraces my broken heart with all its imperfections and says, “It is enough!” 

I can’t imagine how that woman must have felt when Jesus told her that she will never be forgotten.  Jesus received her and did the unthinkable.  He exchanged shame for honor, contempt for value, abuse for heeling, cheapness for beauty, service for relationship, death for life, and brokenness for wholeness.  Like the woman, Jesus is longing to make exchanges with you.  He knows that what we give him is worthless, but he embraces the brokenness.  Give him the pieces of your brokenness and he will always embrace it.