Over almost half a century that I have loved and followed Jesus Christ, I have been constantly reminded of this great truth: GOD LOVES THE BROKEN PEOPLE. I see in my mind’s eye, every day, Jesus looking out over the multitudes of people, His heart overflowing, deeply moved with compassionate love because people’s problems are so great and they do not know where to go for help. They are helpless and harassed, like sheep without a shepherd. The mind-blowing, overwhelming love of God for such broken, hurting, helpless, oppressed, mistreated, deformed human beings never, ever ceases to amaze me and fills me with such awe and wonder at such a God as this!
I have had the privilege and the great honor of serving, speaking and helping tens of thousands of people from all walks of life, all different backgrounds, different races, different languages, many different dysfunctions, and all kinds of issues they struggle with. I have had the privilege of speaking to thousands and thousands of people in Central America and interacted with thousands in a very personal way. I have seldom seen such spiritual hunger, or such a hurting, broken, precious people who longed for love, help, understanding, and deal daily with so much brokenness in their lives, their world, and their culture. I was deeply touched to the depths of my soul as I was among them over and over again by this truth: My Lord Jesus loves the broken people. There is no brokenness too great for Jesus. There is no brokenness that He turns away from with revulsion and says, “My heart does not go out to you, I will not help you.”
As I traveled to Berlin, Germany multiple times, and as I walked the streets of that city during my prayer walks, as I rode on the trams, as I went into the coffee shops, as I spoke to the precious people there, I was again deeply struck by the brokenness, the great oppression that these people had to live with under the communist oppression of the DDR as most of my time was spent in former East Berlin. Often I found myself moved to tears as I pondered the hopelessness and fear that so many of these people and their parents had faced under the godless brutality of communism, and now secular humanism, and the lies they have been told. I saw so many from broken families. I saw so many young people truly aimless, without hope in this world.
I spent years speaking to and caring for the lives of thousands of young people, many who were so broken from the very difficult and dysfunctional homes they grew up in. Many who had been so unloved or mistreated, and so betrayed. Many struggling with eating disorders, addictions of all kinds, cutters, sexually confused, different kinds of personality disorders, all kinds of personal issues they were dealing with, and above all each had their own human frailty, fears, failings and weaknesses.
Each of us reading this today are among those broken people. I am one of those broken people. The stories I could tell you of my brokenness, my hang-ups over the years, the issues that God in His patient, tender, compassionate love had to help me face, or deal with over the decades of my life and my marriage. Dear brother, dear sister, there is no shame in being broken. Do not feel ashamed that you are struggling or dealing with issues today in your life, or in your marriage. God is not shocked, God is not surprised, God is not ashamed of you, God is not going to scream and yell at you or mistreat you. God deeply loves you, accepts you right where you are at. God’s heart is filled with compassion for you, He is extremely gentle, ever so tender, and understanding towards your weaknesses, your issues, your dysfunction, your brokenness, and your human frailties. He will not toss you aside, throw you away, or discard you because you are just too hard to deal with. He will help you face your issues, whatever they may be. He will help you walk through your struggles. God Himself, will gently, patiently, over time, help you overcome them and bring you greater freedom. He may use all kinds of things to do this. God may use a friend, God may use your pastor, He may use your spouse, He may use a trained counselor, He may use a book, He may use a message that profoundly impacts you, He may use your prayers, He may use your Bible reading, He may use a set of very difficult trials, God may use all of the above. But be assured of this, God fervently loves and cares about the broken people and His heart is for you.
Many years ago, I was watching a news story on TV. It was about a family who had adopted a little boy from Romania after the fall of communism and the fall of the Berlin Wall which began in 1989. The story involved an affluent mom and dad, who already had several children of their own. They traveled to Romania after the death of the brutal dictator in Dec. of 1989. This couple wanted to adopt a child from this country and give them a future in America with them as loving parents. They were taken to an orphanage that was dilapidated, the paint was chipped and peeling off most of the walls. A building, that had it been in the United States, would have been condemned. They had never seen such poverty and deprivation. They walked inside, as they had an appointment, and the few ladies working there brought out to stand in front of them, in the main entry room, a group of about 10 children, both boys, and girls. They lined them up, they had them dressed as nice as they could in those conditions, and the children, though all a bit frightened, are smiling, with eyes that scream, “Please pick me!” It was a gut-wrenching scene. As the mother was walking in front of the children, in the background is a growling noise, it sounds brutish, almost animal-like. She tried to ignore it, but it got louder. It seemed to be emanating from a room just behind all of the children in the line. The door there was slightly cracked open. The mother, can no longer ignore the growling noise and asked, “What is that noise?” Nervously, the lady in charge says, “Oh, don’t worry about that, it is just one of the children.” This mom, however, cannot ignore it any longer. She pushed through the line of children in front of her, and against the frantic resistance of the ladies working there, pushed the door open to find to her horror, little children in cages. The ladies began to tell her with tears in their eyes, “We just don’t have enough of us to go around, we just don’t have time to tend to these children.” Suddenly this mother’s eyes were transfixed on the little growling boy, who is in the cage, whose legs are now permanently bent and have grown misshapen to look almost crab-like because he has never been taken out of the cage! The mother walked right over to that little boy, his eyes lit up, a smile across his face, and she said emphatically, “I want that little boy!” The women were shocked! They couldn’t believe it, and do all they can to talk her out of it. The mother was insistent. She stated again, more emphatically, “I want that little boy!”
After many surgeries later, the little boy is dragging one of his legs behind him, struggling to make his way to the family swimming pool where he sort of half jumps, half falls into the water, learning to swim with his new siblings and the family who love and adore him and accepted him in all of his brokenness.
At that moment I began to weep, uncontrollably, as God said to me, “Mark, you are that little boy! I adopted you, Mark, I took you in Mark, with all your deformities, all your brokenness, all your issues and I have spent, and I will spend everything I have to help you get better, to help you with your brokenness, to patiently, tenderly, compassionately help you learn to walk, help you learn to be a man, learn to be a husband, learn to be a father, I will help you Mark with all your issues, your dysfunctions, your problems, because Mark, I love the broken people!”
God loves broken people! Never, ever forget that truth!
Please give these two messages a listen, as I know they will greatly encourage your heart, and enlighten your perspective.