Rebuilding Your Broken World
There is a distinct possibility that you and I may be walking or living through something that has devastated us. There is also a possibility that in looking at our situation we may be looking at it through a lens that causes us to see it in the reverse of what it really is. It may be that we are looking at our lives through a lens that make untrue what is true. It may be that we are looking at our marriage, or our singleness, or future, job, or finances through these lens. What if you are looking at cancer or disappointments and hurts but facing and looking at them through an incorrect lens? I have a question for you.
What if the way you are looking at things is a lie? What if you have bought into a way of thinking that is the opposite of how God looks at things?
We are often tempted to ask where was God when things happen that we don’t understand.
Where was God when my baby died?
Where was God when my house burned down?
Where was God when my teen ager went haywire for a few weeks and got into heroin and is now addicted?
Where was God when I was abused as a child?
I really think that we believe that life was created and beautiful like this pitcher. It has a purpose and something goes in side of it and it pours it out. It has worth and value and we want life to work out like this pitcher. Every time a crack appears in our pitcher we question God.
I remember over twenty years ago between Louisville and Cincinnati when a bus load of church kids returning from a King’s Island trip were hit head on by a drunk driver. 27 people died when the bus erupted into flames and the front door was jammed shut from the impact. I am sure many people wanted to know how God could let that happen.
What I am suggesting today is that maybe we are looking at life through a set of glasses and lens that are totally false.
I want try to give you a look at life from God’s perspective.
When you open your bibles you read that something awful happened. There was a heaven and an earth. God created them.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters.
3 Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good. Then he separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light "day" and the darkness "night." Genesis 1:1-3 NLT
Formless, empty and darkness. It was a wasteland and in fact these words are used elsewhere to speak of chaos and bad things happening. Something bad had already happened.
Satan’s attempt to overthrow God
One third of the angels in heaven were in rebellion. (Ez. 28) They were banished to the earth after an angel got caught up in his own beauty and pride. This earth as we know it today is not the earth that God created. There was a failed coup in heaven. In Genesis 1 and 2 we know that it was dark and that there was a evil spirit there because later when God makes a man and a woman that same spirit takes on the form of a snake.
From God’s perspective there was a perfect creation and these angelic beings had a coup and it resulted in chaos. God moved on to create and shape the world into a perfect place. You can read about it in the rest of Genesis 1. He made light and formed the mountains and valleys. He made creatures of every kind and then He created a man and a woman. He made them in His image and created them for companionship. He wanted them to love and worship Him. They lived in a perfect world and could do anything except eat from a tree that God commanded them to leave alone. It was a perfect world. They knew nothing of violence or death and suffering. There was no such thing as sickness or sorrow or sadness.
And then something bad happened again.
Adam and Eve in the garden
The tempter showed up like he does in our lives. He questions God and questions whether he really meant what he said. He lures them into listening and believing a lie. They are saying with their actions, I’m not going to believe that God is good or that he has a plan for my life. I’m going to do my own thing because it feels right. There are staging yet another coup against God and His wishes and will.
You can read about it in Genesis 3:
At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves.
8 When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man[a] and his wife heard the LORD God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the LORD God among the trees. 9 Then the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?”
10 He replied, “I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.”
11 “Who told you that you were naked?” the LORD God asked. “Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?” 12 The man replied, “It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it.” 13 Then the LORD God asked the woman, “What have you done?” “The serpent deceived me,” she replied. “That’s why I ate it.” Genesis 3:7-13 NLT
Man hid himself. Man was afraid. Man broke his relationship with God. Evil had entered into the cosmos once and now something awful happened again.
When we view our lives as though we are a beautiful pitcher that God made with a purpose and He puts something good inside and life ought to always be like this. It is a perfect picture and functional. Every time a crack shows up we get disappointed and hurt. We question God because maybe we are looking at life from the wrong perspective. We get angry and question God. We say to Him, What’s the deal? Where were you in the car wreck and where are you in my finances and where were you when my child died? Where were you in my first marriage or when I got cancer?
From God’s perspective He created a perfect world and there was coup number on in the angelic world and then He created a perfect earth and garden for mankind and there was coup number two as they rebelled against God. After coup number two sin entered the world and man began to hide and cover. But the biggest thing that happened was our relationship with God was broken. It was shattered.
You see your quite upset with God because you think you live in the world I showed you in that perfect flawless pitcher but the fact is you and I live in a very broken world. It is very flawed. There is separation from God. It causes problems with marriages, parents, children and even whole nations. It makes war and famine.
Even in this brokenness God takes the man and woman and makes clothes for them. Yes there will be consequences but He reaches out to them to help them and give them another chance. He gave them a new beginning.
But something awful happed again!
Several hundred years later, God has given men and women the way to live but they are totally out of control with selfishness and greed. Sexual promiscuity is rampant. Sin is so bad that Genesis 6 gives us this picture of God’s perspective:
The LORD observed the extent of human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil. 6 So the LORD was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart. 7 And the LORD said, “I will wipe this human race I have created from the face of the earth. Yes, and I will destroy every living thing—all the people, the large animals, the small animals that scurry along the ground, and even the birds of the sky. I am sorry I ever made them.” 8 But Noah found favor with the LORD. Genesis 6:5-8 NTL
The days of Noah and the Flood
God saw what people were doing to each other. He saw the wickedness and the abuse. He saw what people were doing to each other and children being sacrificed to idols. He saw that for gold and silver people would go wipe out whole communities.
We spend all of our time asking and accusing God. We ask all the time why did You let this happen. But the fact is that we live in a very broken world. It is a world that has been shattered and from God’s perspective He has already done this twice and now He is starting over a third time. The earth was so wicked that He destroys it with a flood with the exception of one man and his family and some animals. What is He doing? He is going to try it yet again. He is giving man another chance. He did the same thing He did with Adam and Eve. He reconciled them to himself. There is something in the heart of God that will not give up on human beings. He has always been about paying a price and reconciling them to Himself. He has always been about trying it again.
You see the world looks a lot different from God’s perspective. He has tried to give us every chance in the world to get it right but man refuses and now something awful happens yet again.
Israel God’s People?
God looks up a dirty little band of nomadic people in the desert and calls them His people. He says to them, I want to be your God and you will be my people. I will tell you and instruct you on how to live. I will give you rules and guidelines to live by that will keep you healthy and will bring blessing to your families and nation. All you have to do is follow me. All you have to do is love me with all of your soul, heart mind and strength.
If you know anything about the history of Israel based on the Old Testament you know that it was one coup or rebellion after another. In fact in 1 Samuel 8 we find a perfect example of yet again mankind disappointing a holy God.
“Finally, all the elders of Israel met at Ramah to discuss the matter with Samuel. 5 “Look,” they told him, “you are now old, and your sons are not like you. Give us a king to judge us like all the other nations have.”
6 Samuel was displeased with their request and went to the LORD for guidance. 7 “Do everything they say to you,” the LORD replied, “for it is me they are rejecting, not you. They don’t want me to be their king any longer. 8 Ever since I brought them from Egypt they have continually abandoned me and followed other gods.” 1 Samuel 8:4-8 NLT
From God’s perspective the world is broken and we’ve been asking the wrong questions for a long time. We live in a world that is filled with violence, selfishness, greed, hate, pollution, prejudice and injustice. Just in the last century alone we have had WWI and WWII, the Korean War, Vietnam and current conflicts. We have killed more people in the last 109 years than all people of all previous times. We have had Hitler, Stalin, Idi Amin, the killing fields, and whole tribes of peoples killed in the Sudan and other nations filled with death and destruction. In every nation since the beginning of time has been filled with hatred, wars, injustice and an unwillingness to obey and conform to the will of the God who created them.
Are you starting to see a little bit of God’s perspective? He has over and over and over given chances for us to get it right. He takes the broken pieces and fits them back together in a way that makes them work. Are they perfect like the pitcher we started with? No way.
The bottom line is we ask the wrong question.
The question is not why do bad things happen to good people. The question is why is there so much good in such a bad world.
Nobody ever says, Why would God give me such a great day. Why would God give me such a great job? Why would God give me a healthy baby? Why would God give me a loving husband or wife? Why do I have a job? Why was I born into a loving family? Why did I get to be born in America or wherever you were born, instead of some country that is struggling with the issues of life?
There is something in God that will not give up on us. Yes the world is evil right now. Yes it seems to be getting worse each day in many ways. But God has never given up. He has continually looked for ways to fix us and help us get it right but He won’t force us to do it. The beauty of being a human being is freedom of choice. We are free to choose to serve God or ignore Him. Ignoring Him comes with awful consequences and we pay for it every day across the world.
Before time ever began God in the form of three beings, The Father, Son and Holy Spirit made a plan on how to step into history and give mankind the chance to fix himself. God made a plan to defeat Satan and his power in people’s personal lives. You see left to ourselves we will be broken. Take five or six kids from any nation of the world and put them together with one piece of candy and you know what will happen? By nature we are selfish, angry people that hurt one another and when that spirit is indulged and allowed to live we self destruct. We want to believe that the earth is a nice place and basically good but history does not bear that out at all.
Five major coups that caused God to respond.
Satan rebelled in heaven, Adam and Eve, the people in Noah’s day, Israel and one more.
Jesus Christ responds to our personal coups
It’s an amazing story and the Bible says that at the right time. Galatians 4: “But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. 5 God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.[b] 6 And because we[c] are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.”[d] 7 Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child.[e] And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.” Gal. 4:4-7 NLT
The Bible says that Jesus came to seek and to save those who were lost and to explain the Father. Jesus is sent to this earth as a human being and he lives it perfectly. And time and time again in the story of Jesus we find how God the Father reacts to our messes.
It’s the story of a woman who has had five husbands and is shacking up with yet another guy. She encounters Jesus one day and he loves her unconditionally and she turns her life and her loves over to Him. He offers to give her a drink of water that will make her to never be thirsty again. She becomes a changed woman not by her own strength but by the power of God who longs to transform us and make us like Himself in word and thought and deed.
Do you see it even a little bit today? Can you feel and sense the world from God’s perspective.
He loves you. Plain and simple He really loves you and longs for you to surrender you life and conform it to His will and design and plan. Will it fix the world around you? Only Christ’s return someday to this earth will finally once and for all make the world a safe and godly place.
When God puts you back together in this imperfect world you may look a little more like this pitcher. You will be functional even the cracks and imperfections. He pieces us back together in our broken and failing bodies and what He works on is not making us beautiful on the outside but making us like Him on the inside. And when we conform our lives to His will we influence the world around us. We become light in a dark world. We walk in His will and enjoy not the promise of always having a job, or great health, or never experiencing the sorrow of death or a hundred other bad things but we enjoy His presence in our lives as the world falls apart around us.
It’s what caused the oppressed people of slavery in this country to sing songs about heaven and the life we are bound for in eternity.
There is a Great and Good God who cares about us and longs for us to turn our lives in faith over to Him. He offers to put the pieces of our life back together.
Let me give you a picture of God’s grace and goodness.
Hundreds of years before Christ was born God filled Isaiah’s mind with a picture of Christ.
“Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down.
And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins!
5 But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.
6 All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own.
Yet the LORD laid on him the sins of us all.
7 He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth.
8 Unjustly condemned, he was led away. No one cared that he died without descendants,
that his life was cut short in midstream. But he was struck down for the rebellion of my people.
9 He had done no wrong and had never deceived anyone. But he was buried like a criminal; he was put in a rich man’s grave. 10 But it was the LORD’s good plan to crush him and cause him grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have many descendants He will enjoy a long life, and the LORD’s good plan will prosper in his hands.
11 When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish, he will be satisfied. And because of his experience, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins.
12 I will give him the honors of a victorious soldier, because he exposed himself to death.
He was counted among the rebels. He bore the sins of many and interceded for rebels.
Would you like to bring the broken pieces of your life today to Christ? Would you like to start over and make a fresh start? I invite you to do that today. I invite you to pray and turn the brokenness that you have all around you and let God begin to put the pieces back together.
1. Return to Christ
2. Repent with a godly sorrow
3. Let a revolution happen in your life to overthrow the personal coup that you’ve been staging against God.
4. Receive Him by faith.
5. Refocus your life according to God’s word.
Benediction: Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life.” John 5:24 NLT