Bent But Not Broken
I want to remind you today that your dreams are probably so much smaller than what God has in store for you.
I recently heard a woman talking about two little boys and their glow sticks. The older boy was purchasing a pack of glow sticks and the younger child certainly thought he was entitled to one. I can't imagine any of us experiencing our child screaming in a crowded store. The mom did what any of us would have, opened the pack and gave the child a glow stick to satisfy him. The baby was perfectly content playing with the glow stick, but suddenly the older child snatched it from his hand. Well of course, the baby went back into melt down mode, however, just as the mom was about to reprimand the older child, the stick started to glow, which was mesmerizing to the baby. The older child was not purposefully trying to make his younger sibling cry, but he knew the glow stick could do so much more!
I want to remind you today that your dreams are probably so much smaller than what God has in store for you. Do not sell yourself short; do not believe the enemy’s lies, because you are beautifully and wonderfully made in the eyes of God. So many times, Christians are content walking around just getting by. As Christine Caine said at Passion, “You can still go to heaven in shackles, but why in the world would you want to!” The life of a Christian is the life of freedom, not bound by any shackles, or chains. The glow stick had to be bent to make it crack, which then produced a brilliant light. Sometimes your life will be bent until the point you feel cracks or even deep craters in your heart, but it is through these openings, if you allow, that Christ shines brilliantly testifying to His goodness and mercy, even in the bad times.
Louie Giglio asked the question at Passion this week, “Do you trust his hands for the plan? Can you say in absolute obedience whatever you chose I will trust it?” At times this can be a scary place to live, but it can also be so exhilarating to watch Christ show up in ways you never thought possible. The older sibling never meant to make the younger brother cry, by taking away the glow stick; rather, he simply wanted him to see what he was missing. Sometimes the same is true for your life, as well as mine. The bending produces something far greater than expected. It may take weeks, months, maybe years, but eventually pain has the potential to produce fruit. Do you trust His hands in this new year? Are you ready to live a life without the shackle and chains?
8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;….. 14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. 15 For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self[d] is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. 17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.