Monthly Archives: March 2016

Kintsugi

We are an earthen vessel, easily damaged, easily broken, and sometimes easily thrown away by those that were supposed to love us most.

There are times our damage, our brokenness comes from our own failings, our missteps, and we allow condemnation to keep us broken and dysfunctional. Other times the damage comes from things out of our control; however if you are anything like me you still think we should have been able to stop it, or fix it, or change it,  and we still sit under condemnation because we only see our shortcomings, our failures, our brokenness and not the one that hurt us so.

I was reading this lovely blog by a Beautiful young lady the other day.  She was speaking of her brokenness and how step by step, Jesus was putting her back together. And it reminded me of the Kintsugi pottery. I could see piece by piece Our Father taking each part and binding it back together and then highlighting our brokenness and his wholeness by precious gold. I love this Japanese tradition that doesn’t allow a broken thing to just be tossed out like trash.  Those artists see the beauty in creation, even in the midst of destruction, they still find beauty.

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They weave gold in between the cracks to highlight the scars, to bring beauty and awe to the once destroyed object.

Psalms 147:3 “He heals he brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”  Jesus came. He came for us. He was sent to bind up the brokenhearted and to set us free. Far too often, we are ashamed of our past our failings.  I admit there are lots of things about me that I just don’t want people to know.  Things I only share when necessary, but the scars can still be visible in the reaction I have to something.

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Change is difficult. Healing is so difficult because usually it involves cleaning out the old wound which is painful, and letting it breath, and then packing it so that it can heal from the inside out so that infection doesn’t take over the whole body.

Just when we think we’ve healed from a hurt, something comes up and we doubt ourselves because we are still affected by a word, a look, a slight.  But I see it like this.

I walk through a valley. Valleys are wide when you are far from the mountains and we can carry lots of  bags with us.  Perhaps even multiple bags from years of brokenness of the same hurt. We lay some of the burden down, Jesus takes it and we walk on. As we near the mountain, the valley becomes less wide.  I can’t drag as many bags through, they keep getting snagged on rocks.  I recognize I still hurt over that issue.  I give it to Jesus. He takes it, we move on.  Did I not heal the first time? Did I take the burden back? Sometimes yes, most times no, it’s a new level of healing.  Our Father loves us so much that he is so patient with us. He knows wounds do not heal overnight, they take time, they have to heal layer by layer, and sometimes they have to be cut open a little more to make proper room to heal.

He is ever at our side, binding our hearts back together bit by bit, sliver by sliver, and then covering that with precious gold. The gold brings honor to where condemnation once sat. Makes beautiful what was once so horrendous we weren’t sure we would ever truly recover.

His love for us is so real and massive right now I can’t even find the words to say what I want to say about that. I am again filled with awe at what a wonder savior Jesus is.  I am dumbstruck at a Father that would move heaven and earth for me, send His son to die in my place, to be broken and destroyed to pay my debts and the debts of those that I hurt, or that hurt me.  And then would raise up His son so that we could be a part of the fellowship again.

I am amazed that His grace abounds to us in such a measure, favor that we don’t deserve, peace we haven’t earned. And the gift of the friendship and companionship of Holy Spirit. He is ever with us. guiding, loving and holding us.

He gives us beauty for ashes, he redeems us.  He calls out to us like when he sent Hosea to bring his wife home telling us, no matter what you’ve done, or what’s been done. He is quick to welcome us back home. He sanctifies us for Him and His purpose.  He uses those scars that he has glorified with his Blood and gold from the refiner’s fire to draw others home.

Never think for one moment that anything you have done or gone through is a wasted step or opportunity.  He is the Great Redeemer for a reason, and even if we were out of step, even if it was our fault, even if it was something so heinous that it breaks our hearts, He is the one holding us together patiently, painstakingly binding us and setting us free.

YOU ARE FREE.  YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL AND YOU ARE FREE.

Love you, may the peace of the Lord that passes all understanding sing to your heart today, His song of love.

 

 

 

 

I am sure that I didn’t post these pictures where you can see the person that actually took them, sorry I am still learning. These images are from a google search of Kintsugi.  There are so many examples of this art form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Word

You know sometimes it is so difficult to find something to write about, but really it isn’t if I just expand on something I’ve already spoken about.  Not spoken publicly, but in private conversations. Whether they are with my dear friend that keeps encouraging me to step out and write, teach, or seek God, how to use this whole thing as the gift she sees, or my nephew that is so hungry, he just draws this out of me, or even my coworkers in the middle of the night during our shift, when it is quiet, and really I am just mulling things over trying to get a handle on things, or to articulate what I am sensing.

Two things have really been on my mind, and they really aren’t two things but one.  Several years ago, I was developing a spectacular life of Jesus musical… in my heart I could see it, taking praise and worship songs of today and intertwining them with the word, and with Jesus.

The opening scene was this: 2 narrators on either side of the staging area, elevated, illuminated by a single spotlight each.

N1 “In the beginning was the Word”

N2 “Jesus”

N1 “and the Word was with God”

N2 “Jesus”

N1 “and the Word was God”

N2 “Jesus”

He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made.” and so on until a lone figure in the middle of the stage dressed in white with a white veil covering her face and chains around her wrists as she holds a single candle, singing “O come, O come Emmanuel”

It still affects me when I think about how I saw the beginning and also the end.  Which actually is amazing, since I have the most difficult time ending any piece of work, I had this one ended.

That was one thing, the other thing is: several years ago, I was involved with someone I thought God had put in my life and I thought we would be married, quite honestly.  Didn’t work out that way, and I learned a lot of things the hard way because of it, but those were also very important things to learn. (one very quick thing: if you and God settle something, a decision or course of action, whatever, DO NOT LET ANYONE CONFUSE YOU WITH THEIR TAKE ON THE SITUATION.  You and God settled it, you had peace, you slept because you have peace, don’t ever let someone’s supposed words of wisdom go against that.)

Anyway, this guy, it was his birthday and  after church, I was taking him out for lunch for his birthday.  Even though it was still a bit cool we were sitting outside in the sun. The waiter came up and knelt down at our table to talk to us face to face. During that initial time of chit chat, he said he had a bit of a headache, and the guy with me asked if he wanted us to pray for him. That poor waiter literally took 2 steps back, like he was contagious.  My guy didn’t notice or care to notice enough to stop there though, he then  asked if the waiter was saved and on and on, which is why as soon as we had our food, he was out of there.

I tried to talk to him about being a steamroller over the waiter.  And his response was that he didn’t want anyone’s blood on his hands because he didn’t talk to them about Jesus.

While I can understand that mentality, Jesus never ran to people to tell them about him, at least that isn’t how I read it. He was followed, he was sought. The people saw and experienced the miracles and heard his teaching, teaching to love and that the heart matters, showing Our Father’s great compassion on us. Does this make sense?

All I have ever wanted was to make a difference, but not in the way that makes others uncomfortable.  Don’t get me wrong, I do talk about Jesus, and Our Father, I use the only wisdom I have ever known, the wisdom that comes from the Author. Many years ago I had a friend that didn’t like to argue with me because he said I always used the Bible.  My response was basically, that’s what I know.  But his life had been turned upside down by people that said they were “Christian” and they let him down. and because his relationship with God was non existent, and he only saw God through those people, he had rejected God.

Look, I am flawed.  I still walk around in this flesh.  My flesh still cries out, my flesh is lazy, gets tired, gets frustrated, gets angry.  Flesh is like wearing new stiff oversized leather work gloves while performing surgery with a scalpel.  The Spirit is bringing peace and love and joy and fellowship, but our flesh mangles the words and the deeds.

We all have those new gloves that we have to weather and break in so that they become supple and like a second skin. Those are the people you see that walk in true joy, the peace that passes our understanding, and can walk on water.

The only way that I can see us effectively breaking in those gloves is by opening our hearts to the One that created us.  To immersing ourselves in His love and light and word, in short, immersing ourselves in Jesus.

Outreach is awesome. Evangelism is amazing; they definitely have their place in our lives. So does being salt and light to your world. Those deal with the senses, taste (Taste and see that the Lord is Good. Ps 34:8) and sight (Thy word ‘Jesus’ is a lamp unto my soul and a light unto my path. Ps 119: 105).

It all boils down to relationship. It is an integral part of discipleship, without it there are empty hearts struggling to find the anchor they need.  They still look for solid ground, They are tossed about on every wave of doctrine that comes along.

The only way to disciple is to immerse yourself into the first born of many brothers, He knows you, and is desiring you to know Him.

Keep reading John, notice how much love that flows from every word into your heart.

Love you. grace and peace to you.