Broken Bones

 “I’m just a bunch of broken bones.”

That’s what I told God on Sunday morning, as I stood alone in the pew at church. That’s how I felt. It was about my fifth time visiting this church, but it was my first time visiting alone, and so I felt pretty raw and vulnerable there in that pew by myself. But it wasn’t just that I was there alone. It was also all of the baggage I’d dragged in with me from the week. Sleepless nights that I’d laid awake worrying about all manner of things that I couldn’t control. Small hurts and bruises that I’d picked up throughout the week. Burdens I was carrying for others. Even in church with a face full of makeup and a church-appropriate smile, I felt shattered. I just managed not to wear it like a neon sign. But I figured it was pointless to hide it from God, and so I told Him.

“I’m just a bunch of broken bones.”

A few seconds later, the music leader went off of his sheet of music and began making up a new verse to the song, just off the cuff. The new verse he sang was about our God who breathes into dry bones and makes them live. I smiled and quietly cried at the same time. I knew God was speaking to me, and I so wanted to believe what He was saying and what Erik was singing. It’s just hard to believe that you can be whole when you feel like broken bones.

Bob Sorge tells a similar story. He’s been a renowned worship leader. He’s written popular books. But at this time, he feels broken.

“Then the Lord brought this psalm of David’s to mind: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul’ and all that is within me, bless His holy name!’ (Psalm 103:1). I sensed the Lord asking, ‘What’s within you? What do you have to give?’ I said, ‘Lord, all I’ve got today is tears.’ He said, ‘Then give me your tears.’ He doesn’t ask us to give Him something that we don’t have. When you feel empty, give Him whatever you have within you, little as it may seem.” (Sorge, The Fire of Delayed Answers)

Hearing Sorge’s story reminds me that it’s okay to be where I am. It’s okay to be empty. It’s okay to feel broken. But the important part is to be honest with God, and to give Him the emptiness and the brokenness.

Psalm 18:20 in the Message says, “God made my life complete when I placed all the pieces before Him.”

So, okay, I’ll give Him the pieces. I’ll give him the whole skeleton. And I’ll understand that the process may take a while. (I like instant healings, but I’m learning that they rarely happen that way.) And I’ll believe that when He’s done, I’ll be whole and I’ll be really alive.

This post is part of a weekly book discussion on Bob Sorge’s book, The Fire of Delayed Answers. You don’t have to read the book to jump into the chat. Go on a leave a comment if you’d like! If you did wrote a response to this week’s chapter, go visit my co-facilitator (and friend!) Jason Stasyszen and link it up at the widget.

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  1. Good word..sista.. We have to “Give Them All”…to Jesus. the old song say.. Love ya!

  2. He breathes life into broken and dry bones. It’s not always instantaneous, but it is always perfect.

  3. I highlighted the same part. I love that: God doesn’t ask you to give what you don’t have. That’s called pretending. If there’s faith in your rejoicing, that’s great. If you don’t have it, pour out your heart. Wonderful reminder, Sarah. Thank you.

  4. Sarah…..when you post, I gotta read, because I know it will be real and unpretentious. I am trusting God for financial needs right now which keep piling up and I am asking a lot of questions myself. Why does it seem that people work so hard to do the right thing and keep struggling when others seem to skate effortlessly along? I don’t know, I am just clinging to the verse that says that He will supply all our needs…….Thank you for this post.

    Thank you for you! Lori

  5. Ah yes, we are on the same page this week, sistah! The same part hit me. It was my favorite part! I am so grateful that we can take our brokenness to Him and trust in Him to hold us up and breathe life into us again. If we can’t be real with Jesus, then we can’t be real with anybody. Love you, Sarah! ?

  6. It’s interesting to see what everyone is pulling out of this book, also interesting to see so many of us face the same or similar struggles and feelings. I’ve felt so alone in the past, so broken, but God already knows and He holds us together. It’s comforting to know we all face similar challenges and feelings and in the Hands of God we can take rest and find hope in knowing God is using all these feelings and times of pain to mature us.

    Thank you for sharing.

  7. Sarah Salter says:

    Barbara, I sang that song to my small group a few weeks ago! Most of them had never heard it. 🙂

  8. Sarah Salter says:

    Dusty, if it was instantaneous, I wouldn’t appreciate it nearly as much, and I wouldn’t learn nearly as much. 🙂

  9. Sarah Salter says:

    Jason, I love the idea of pouring it out. Pouring doesn’t have to be graceful. It doesn’t have to be exact. But it’s best if you pour it all. (That may make more sense in my head than on the page…) 🙂

  10. Sarah Salter says:

    Awwww, Lori, that’s sweet! I appreciate that! And I can also tell you that being real is NOT easy. That’s one reason I don’t post super-often. Because I can only manage to be so vulnerable so often. And I can very much identify with your struggle. I’ll tell you a secret — when I went to bed the night before my last payday, I only had 43 cents in the bank. It’s SCARY. It’s uncomfortable. It’s not fun at all! But I’m clinging to the same verse that you are. He’ll supply our needs, Lori! He will! And we will watch and be amazed!

  11. Sarah Salter says:

    I love you, too, Joell! And seriously, if we can’t be real with Him, then we can’t be real with anybody. Good point!

  12. Sarah Salter says:

    TC, it amazes me how one day, I feel victorious, and the next, I feel broken. I suppose it’s all part of the processes of becoming more His. I’m glad we’re all going through it together. 🙂

  13. I’m glad we’re doing it together too. Blogging is a great community support system.

    When John the Baptist said he needed more of Jesus and less of himself, I’m not sure he knew exactly what that would mean, but I’m so glad it’s in the Bible.

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