Saturday, November 27

desiring to be broken?

Today I was at a craft show at the Vineyard church off Main.  I will be honest - I think that my crafting days are over.  There is very little that truly excites me when it comes to crafts. (especially since for a few years I was heavy duty into the crafting scene - even part of a group that hosted a weekend sale in our home!) Those crafting years seems like eons ago.  A few years ago, when Alvin and I painted our house - I got rid of ALOT of crafts...  yes granted I still had SOME but for the most part, I purged alot of stuff.  All of a sudden "STUFF" just made me feel claustrophobic!  BUT that being said, I still go to the odd craft sale - just because.

Anyhow - that being said, the sale at the Vineyard church building was really done well.  Good publicity.  And some very very unique crafts! 

That is where I talked to my friend Tanis Gray - BROKEN CLAY
and looked over some of her necklaces again.  I met Tanis for the first time last year - I think I may have blogged about that.  I met her at the Scattered Seeds Craft Sale in 2009.  It just seemed to be God-ordained.  Since then we have had the pleasure of chatting over coffee at Sam's Place.  So, since it has been a while - it was good to chat briefly today (since it was pretty busy). 

Immediately one piece caught my eye, and the eye of my daughter as well.  I loved the colors - this one piece was brown with some green.  But what intrigued me even more was the name of the piece.  It was called:

Ash and I looked at it.  And in the back of my mind I thought "I would really like this one" but at the same time I thought "But Joy - do you really DESIRE to be broken?  You have been BROKEN but did you and would you in the future DESIRE brokeness?"  oooooooooooo...

I didn't buy it - although I want to email Tanis about it to see if she could put it away for me so that I can buy it.  But I had to look up her little write up on her website to explain why she chose the title DESIRE TO BE BROKEN.

This is what Tanis says on her website about this piece she created:
"I Fused stained glass onto the clay and found out it crackles as it cools and looks even more beautiful. The key to unleashing the Holy Spirit within us is simply allowing ourselves to become broken. When we have been broken , the things of the flesh removed from our lives, that which is valuable can flow from us and affect others that we come in contact with in our daily lives.All of this and much more will be unleashed in our lives if we learned to simply be broken. Being broken isn't easy. In fact it's painful. As God reveals the things in our lives that need to be released, our flesh will struggle to hold on to them. But if we allow the Spirit to have His way, we will end up a completely broken vessel that affects the lives of others in ways we never imagined. Don't just desire to be blessed. Desire to be broken…."

She then used one of my favorite Scripture:  2 Corinthians 4:7-12 (The Message)

If you only look at us, you might well miss the brightness. We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives. That's to prevent anyone from confusing God's incomparable power with us. As it is, there's not much chance of that. You know for yourselves that we're not much to look at. We've been surrounded and battered by troubles, but we're not demoralized; we're not sure what to do, but we know that God knows what to do; we've been spiritually terrorized, but God hasn't left our side; we've been thrown down, but we haven't broken. What they did to Jesus, they do to us—trial and torture, mockery and murder; what Jesus did among them, He does in us—He lives! Our lives are at constant risk for Jesus' sake, which makes Jesus' life all the more evident in us. While we're going through the worst, you're getting in on the best!

So since then I have been thinking of that ... of being broken.... of DESIRING to be broken.
That for me - seems like an even different thought.  Although we know that we are to LAY ourselves DOWN for the Lord... but desiring to be broken?

I think so often I have the wrong picture of brokenness.  I think when we see something that has been broken and fixed, it seems like it just doesn't measure up.  It seems like it becomes a "second" because something is wrong with it.  BUT when we read the Scripture about clay vessels - the whole idea of brokenness is turned on its head.  All of a sudden it makes sense.  All of a sudden brokenness seems to have a purpose.

But - being broken hurts.  I know that.  Many of you know that.  There is nothing, nothing NOTHING that feels good about being broken.  And sometimes we feel like we are broken not just into two pieces but into a million.  And yet - in this Scripture is says that even we we are sometimes "thrown down but not broken" ... I will be honest, I have to stop and think about that.  WHY?  Because I honestly felt broken in a million little pieces so if I wasn't broken, then I can't imagine how much more painful that would be TO be broken.
Okay, I am likely not making much sense. 

THE BOTTOM LINE:  does anyone desire to be broken?  really and truly?  I honestly just thought "it happens" to us.  I honestly have wondered "why Mr. Cranky over there continues to be so cranky and yet floats through life untouched" ...  I have honestly wondered why God allows some things for some and not for others.  I feel like I have encountered brokenness over and over and over again.  But honestly, not sure I ever "desired to be broken".  Hmmmmm..... 

Yes, I am "talking out loud" again - me, the verbal processor!  And you, are likely wondering where I am going with all this.  Well here are some of my summations (is that a word?) as I look through my experiences with brokenness.  In most cases they have involved loss of something.  Loss of those I loved so deeply.  Loss of health, when I encountered my depression in the mid nineties.  Loss of mobility at times, with my fibromyalgia.  Loss of trust with people.  Loss of work (even though I resigned, it was still a loss).  And if you have read my blog you will know about my greatest loss of my grandson Jay. 

For me - I associated brokenness with loss.  With tears.  With emotional anguish.  With broken hearts. 
I associated brokenness wtih things that were painful in one way or another.  BUT... just this week - I was talking with people about this.  And I see where my brokenness has been woven into the great plan and purpose that God has for me.  I am not sure that I can honestly say THANK YOU LORD for the brokenness... but I can see how He has taken my brokenness and brought healing, and growth and used it for his glory.  I have seen that in the brokenness - how I walk in it - depends on me and whether I am bitter or whether I allow God to carry me through it - so that I see something beautiful come from it.  I don't know - maybe I am just rambling now...

But, the neckace today has made me wonder about that... about desireing to be broken.  Part of me is scared that if this is my true desire - perhaps it would get so bad that I would not be able to stand under it.  However God speaks about that too, doesn't He... in the Word it talks about not being given so much that we can't bear it!  (I don't know - I actually felt like I crumbled under our brokenness of losing Jay.)

I am just really wondering about this.  I am thinking that if Tanis is around for coffee .... her and I should talk.  I know she has walked through hard stuff too, and think she can give her perspective on it!

We are given friends in life - so that we can bear one another's burdens' and carry one another's sorrow.  We are given friends so that we can hold one another up - listen to each other - cry with each other.
But then again - Jesus is the greatest friend of all.

Desiring to be broken.  Can I actually desire that without being aftraid of what all He may allow in my life?
hmmm....  think I need to mull this around over another big cup of coffee.

.. thanks for listening to my rambling.  Any thoughts?  I would love to hear them.

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