It’s BROKEN! - Deborah Vernetti
It’s BROKEN! We’ve heard those words used countless times and spoken them ourselves, more often than we’d like. Every parent has heard them from a child about a favorite toy. Teachers hear it from their students about pencil tips. Doctors hear it from patients about their fragile bones.
One needn’t look far to see all the broken things in the world. Beyond the broken toys, tools, tree branches & vases, there are deeper things also incredibly broken. Marriages & families, governments & churches, communities & cultures – all broken. As I type these words, my heart is heavy and I find myself sighing deeply. What are we to do with all of the brokenness around us?
A familiar Andraé Crouch song comes to mind: "Jesus is the Answer". I must confess, as a child, I often felt the simplicity of those lyrics didn’t meet the complexity of the needs I encountered. But the longer I live and the more I get to know our great big God, the more convinced I become that Jesus truly is the answer to any and all of the complexity and brokenness we face.
Jesus took on flesh, walked in seamless communion with His Father, fulfilled every Old Testament prophecy, strategically and graciously invested in His disciples, sacrificed Himself to pay the penalty for the sins of the world, overwhelmingly conquered death, established and commissioned the Church and at this very moment lives and intercedes for His people before the throne of God.
On Sunday, March 15, 2020, Pastor Will preached what would be his last sermon before a live congregation for three months. His "Biblical Viewpoint on the Pandemic" included 5 points:
- Our world is broken
- Our lives are fragile
- God is sovereign
- Our witness is key
- Our hope is Christ
I didn’t realize at the time that this sermon was to be a bookend at the front of our COVID journey with Ed Stetzer on the backside, two and a half months later. Recall this Stetzer quote from his May 31, 2020 message entitled, "What it Means to Be Children of God":
When we see the Lord, we know His hands and His side bear the markings of His crucifixion, which ultimately brings the victory and one day makes ALL things right and new.
When we know that to be the case, we know “He’s got this!” So we can join Jesus on mission because of the confidence of His resurrection and we can know that He’s got this.
Christians, this is the time right now when we don’t run away from economic crises, crises of injustice and illness – we run towards them…
One of my favorite songs, “A Little More Time to Love,” by Steven Curtis Chapman has a line in it from JRR Tolkein’s Return of the King. Samwise Gangee wakes up and asks if “everything sad is going to come untrue”.
A Little More Time To Love
Steven Curtis Chapman
…So what am I to do with my few minutes here in this place?
We hear the world sigh with its aches and its pains
We see the grass wither and watch flowers fade
But oh, there's a day that is coming when everything will be new
And oh, God will dry every tear and everything sad will be made untrue
And oh, it's gonna be a celebration all of creation longs for
And while we're waiting for that day to come we've got a little more time to love
This COVID journey had given me a glimpse into God’s heart for the lost, hurting, disenfranchised and vulnerable among us. Someone once asked, “God, with all the pain in the world, what’s Your plan for fixing it?” His response is, “You, Church - you are My plan. Go, be the hands and feet of Jesus. Mend brokenness, restore relationships, share the gospel, be the change.”
That’s what Pastor Will, Ed Stetzer, the CF Outreach Team, Steven Curtis Chapman and ultimately Jesus are all calling us to do. Let’s get out there and be a part of causing everything sad to be made untrue.