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Robbing God 3rd April, 2010

Posted by Scotty in Heart, Life, Me, Pain.

For the last couple of weeks I have been thinking about vulnerability with regards to our brokenness.  When we hide our issues and pretend life is fine and dandy, we rob God of the glory He deserves.

I have heard it said many times (and I have said it many times):

“our God is in the business of changing lives”

Another term that I hear thrown around which I love is:

redeemed brokenness

The entirely of creation is the story of God redeeming that which is broken.  From the start of the Bible to the end we see story after story of God taking messed-up people, revealing Himself to them causing a transformation of heart, and then doing great things through them.  God delights in taking what is broken and redeeming it!  The death and resurrection of Christ is about God taking a world messed up by sin and redeeming it.  It is when we hear the story of redeemed brokenness in someone’s life that we are moved to the core and filled with hope.

Sin has had its effect on us.  We are all broken.  Every person living has some area of sin in their life.  Part of our fallen nature is the desire to hide our sin (like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden in Gen 3:8) and Christians today do a very good job of hiding it.  We all have temptations we face and sin we are dealing with and we hide it.  We have aspects of our life that we feel shame over and so we put on a face and pretend they didn’t happen.  And in doing so we rob God of His glory.  When we hide our struggles, we keep people from seeing God give us victory.  When we put on a face, we mask the hope that someone else can experience by knowing they are not alone and that there is a way out.

At the foot of the cross the ground is level.  We are all sinners saved by grace.  No one’s sin is any better or worse than anyone else.  We all fall infinitely short of the standard God calls us to, and so we equally need the cleansing sacrifice of Christ so we are washed clean.  But we allow fear to stop us from being powerful instruments God can use to shine His light into other people’s lives.

I have my own arsenal of issues stemming from sin and lies that I have wrestled with throughout my life.  I have drank too much.  smoked.  stolen. gone for months without reading my Bible.  without praying.  without going to church. been stolen from.  bullied.  been bullied.  I have hated.  coveted.  I have struggled with lust and all that goes with it.  been sexually immoral. confused about sexuality. felt unloved.  felt valueless.  felt worthless.  felt purposeless. i have been used.  abused.  assaulted.  i have been heart-broken.  have broken hearts. been manipulative. divisive. unloving. impatient.  prideful.  arrogant. power hungry.  attention seeking.  spiteful…

Sadly, the list goes on.

Worse than all of that though (to me): I once had someone I discipled tell me that they wanted to give up being a Christian because they could never follow Jesus the way I do.  Because I loved Him so much I didn’t ever struggle with anything and they struggled with sin all the time.

I realized in that moment that I’d spent so much time trying to show people how exciting life with God is, that I had failed to be vulnerable with my struggles.  I hid my issues and pretending life was great.  At some points this has been a noble pursuit and I didn’t share because I was solely thinking about the positive aspects of my journey hoping to inspire someone else.  But at other points I hid the struggles because I didn’t want someone to think less of me.  I was ashamed of parts of my life.  In doing so… I ROBBED GOD.

Five or six years ago God grabbed my heart in a new way as I fell in love with the Scriptures.  More and more I saw that God’s favorite way of showing people how great He is, is by taking broken people and over a lifetime walking with Him He makes them whole.  All of the stories in Scripture (and every real life story of someone God has worked in and through) is a story of someone with struggles.  God uses them even though they have issues and slowly over time those issues are transformed and God is exalted.

God has given us all a story to tell.  Every person who gives their life to Him has a story of the sin and lies God rescued them from.  But they also have a story of the sin and lies God is currently rescuing them from.  Let us stop wearing masks and pretending we are what we’re not.  Let us show that we are weak so that other people who are struggling know they are not alone.  Let us stop hiding our brokenness and instead share the story of how God has redeemed it (and is redeeming it!).  Let us stop robbing God of the glory.

I have battled with sin and believed lies about who I am.  You have seen the list of issues I have wrestled with.  And in person or in writing you have seen the person I have become.  Redeemed brokenness:  A scared and confused boy who didn’t feel like life was worth living has been (and is being) transformed.

Redeemed brokenness is my story.

Let it be yours.



1. Katie Harrington - 2nd April, 2010

heya there-
Thank you so much for your post on being broken and letting people know that it is fine with being broken. What I have always learned throughout my life is that God is always there no matter what I do.

There have been times in my life where I am ashamed that I went and ashamed of the things that I did. Like many others I too am being transformed by God each and every day. Looking back at my life, I always questioned “what would God use me for?” or even “why is God using me for this?”. In a sense, I can’t see why He would want to use us to perform his work but because his work on the cross, we are able to go ahead and do his kingdom work. It’s truly amazing that God does use broken people throughout history to transform the world.

I always seem to reflect back to the woman at the well in the Book of John. She was the epitomy of garbage in that day and Jesus knew that she was special. This story always gets me and helps me focus back on how he uses all of us, it’s his way of letting us know that we are still all sinners but we have been set free from Jesus dying on the cross.

I know I’m being transformed each and everyday. Thank you for being real and for allowing all of us to experience the “real Scott” and being transparent with everything that you have gone through.

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