She bows down.
If this is what freedom is, do I really want it?
She raises her fist to the heavens and shouts her anger. She lets her heart ugliness spill out and over, and then falls to her knees keening her pain. She rocks back and forth, curled up within the pain, when she feels Him reach out His hand to comfort her.
He scoops her up, holds her close to His heart and whispers in her ear: ‘I love you, I am here and I will never leave you to go through this alone, will you trust Me?’
Her first instinct is to cringe and hold on tighter to the pain, but then she remembers….
He was broken for her.
And she uncurls from the pain and holds it up to Him as an offering and in His brokenness she finds her rest.
This is a conundrum of truth. That freedom comes through brokenness.
Christ’s brokenness. Our brokenness.
I have only ever experienced true freedom when I accepted Christ’s brokenness on my behalf and when I was willing to be broken. What? Aren’t we suppose to be victorious and more than conquerors and all that? Yes, of course, absolutely, no question about it, but there remains the truth that I have two patterns of thought waging war within me: the flesh and the spirit. Which will win? The Spirit can only win once I have experienced brokenness in the flesh.
You see, freedom is easily abused, is easily misunderstood, and is often misconstrued. Freedom is not a freedom to do what I want. To do what I please. Freedom is for doing God’s will. His will. Only his will.
So many things stand in his way. They are us. They are our foibles, desires, sins, idols, past, present, and future. All of these things stand in the way of freedom. The kind of freedom that God intends for us to run in.
We are set free to be who God intended for us to be—not some improved version of ourselves, but a new version of ourselves. Jesus did not suffer an insufferable death so that I could be reformed. No. It would be cheapening his grace if I were to merely be reformed. I need to be transformed.
That’s the kind of grace that motivated my Savior to die a horrific death in my place. It is the kind of grace I want in my life. It’s the kind of grace that comes through brokenness and yes, that is frightening, but I know that my God takes this heart of mine that I hold out to him and he gently and tenderly touches all the places that need to be removed and in his wisdom and timing he removes the old and replaces it with new. There is never any leaving of the old. It is all new. My only requirement is to submit and to trust.
To be reformed is to retain some semblance of the original and to make improvements on it. To be made new, to be transformed, means being willing to let go of the original, watch it break and see something new made out of it.
Transformed through brokenness.
A beautiful brokenness.
A priceless freedom.