There is a difference between being “cracked” and broken. A cracked vase can still hold a candle and shine light. A vase that is broken needs to be either fixed or thrown away. The more broken pieces the less useful the vase becomes. We are empty vases that are filled with the spirit of God. The more broken we are the less God we can carry inside of us.
Your soul is who you are. YOU are the same YOU since the day you were born but your body has changed drastically – from small to tall, from young to older, from light to heavy. I’m not a different person now than I was at three years old. HOWEVER, I am a different KIND OF person. Growth and development should cause some changes to the kind of person you are – but you are still the same soul. Therefore, you will never be without “separation” until your soul leaves your body. If we are absolutely perfect humans (and nobody is) then there is always at least one crack remaining inside of us – the separation between our body and our soul. Living in wholeness means that we live in one piece. Though we may have cracks, our holes and gaps are filled. The cracks allow our light to shine.
So how do you get from broken to pieces to a well-sealed together vase? Here are 7 steps to get your started on your journey:
#1 Acknowledge Your Brokenness
The first step in making change to anything is to admit that change needs to occur. We do not know we need to fix something unless we are first made aware that it is broken. You have to take a long, intentional look at yourself and admit that there are broken places in your life. It will not be easy to do. The journey to wholeness begins with seeing and accepting your own imperfection. Ecclesiastes 1:18 tells us that “The greater my wisdom, the greater my grief. To increase my knowledge only increases my sorrow.” The more you get to know yourself as a broken vase, the harder it is to remain in that broken state.
#2 Identify the Broken Pieces
Once you have acknowledged that you are broken and allow yourself to feel that brokenness, it is time to define the broken pieces of your life. You have acknowledged that you are not really as happy as you profess, good as you put on, or satisfied as you claim to be. Now it is time to figure out why. What’s missing? This is the step where you must go back to your past and think about those moments and people and things that have changed the kind of person you are. Who were the people that slowly, but effectively dimmed your light? What were the things that snatched the purpose from inside you? Like the first step, this is hard. This is going to be a battle. But, 2 Chronicles 20:15 reminds us that our battles are not ours, but Gods. The Lord wants you to shine bright light into the world and so, he will accompany you on this painful journey.
#3 Align the Pieces into a Vision
Forgiveness. This is the cornerstone of this step. Forgiveness is like finding the corners and edges of a puzzle to start putting it back together again. You must forgive yourself and forgive those who you identified in step 2. You decide at this point what you want your life to be and how you want to live it. Then, you bring these broken pieces into alignment with that vision. So, call the sister you haven’t spoken to in years. Go back and start doing the thing that you lost hope in. Go to school. Get a new job. This is where you DO something different so you can BE something different. Need a scripture? Habakkuk 2:3 is it. It is not going to happen over night but start doing things differently. Start with a vision.
#4 Glue with God
Okay, you know that you are broken. You know where you are broken and now you have started to put the pieces back together. You have aligned them. You have a vision for your life. Now, you wait on God. God’s love and only God’s love can seal these pieces back into place and over time you will start to look like the person he created you to be. 1 John 4:16 says “We know how much God loves us an
d we have put our trust in his love.” You can’t move past this step until you believe that scripture. Truly. You may be on this step for years but once you realize how much God loves you. You take a huge leap on the journey to wholeness. This is when you prepare to let your light shine.
#5 Identify the Holes
So you had 1000 broken pieces and you managed to put most of them together and form your vase. Your vase is standing upright and it is clear to you and everyone that you are a beautiful vase designed to hold something. You look like yourself again. But…there are only 989 pieces. So, there are some holes in the vase- thereby making it impossible to hold anything tangible inside of it. What are these holes? The holes are things that you just aren’t able to fix. It’s your “stuff”. We all have it. Blame it on Adam and Eve. Look in the mirror and identify your “stuff”.
#6 Let God Fill the Holes
Paul’s thorn. Israel’s limp. Kamryn’s deadly tongue. These things must be managed daily by God. These holes….this is where you walk by faith and not by sight. (Hebrews 11:1). These holes remain in you because God will use them for his good purpose. This is how God keeps your attention so you don’t get too far ahead of yourself. So God FILLS these holes when he needs to use you and he lets you FEEL them when he needs to talk to you. Racism, sexism, bigotry, hidden addictions, secret relationships, and personality tics are all examples of holes – big and small.
#7 Learn to live Unbroken
We are so used to pretending that we are perfect that living authentically as imperfect people can sometimes be harder than living a lie. Most of us do not know how to live authentically. We love to say things like “Real recognize real” and “I keep it real” but the truth is most who say these things are not real at all, but are merely plastic bowls of broken pieces. I can easily spot the redeemed of the Lord because they “say so”. (Psalm 107:2)
You’ve arrived at Unbroken…
When you are unbroken, you can tell the story of your brokenness. Not everyone is going to start a blog or write a book but you are truthful with yourself and spirit led in sharing what the Lord has done for you. Your light shines through the pieces that He’s put back together again. Your joy is complete. You love yourself and everybody else. It is that love that sustains you that causes you to grow into a different kind of person. When you are unbroken, your light shines so that others can see the hope in being unbroken too.
The difference between an unbroken person and one that is pretending to be whole?
God’s light shines from those who are unbroken. People who fake wholeness are projecting “ME! ME! ME!” They must create their own spotlight and stand in it for the world to see. Those of us who are proudly, imperfectly, unbroken stand in the light of God. So Shine on TYC tribe! Shine on!