There are times in our lives when it feels as if the cup falls from our hands and to our sorrow we see it crack or break. For some this could be dealing with disappointment, job loss, disability, injustice, betrayal and for others it could be loss or trauma. It was in a time like that in my own life where God taught me some really precious things that allowed me to see Jesus even more clearly than I had ever seen Him before …
as the master potter, craftsman and mender of my own heart.
It was 4 years ago for me when I watched in slow motion as the beautiful cup that I treasured slowly fell and broke into what seemed to me like thousands of broken shards. My husband and I walked through what we thought was unthinkable … the loss of our precious little boy. Negotiating the pain of our own loss and the added hurt of seeing the loss and pain of our 2 little girls broke our hearts. But what I came to experience was a journey and a legacy that precious Jesus had entrusted to us … a journey of heart healing and renewed hope … so the cup that I speak to you of today is actually the cup of hope and the beauty that can shine even in the hearts of those who have needed to be lovingly repaired by the Heart-Mender … our beloved Potter … Jesus Christ.
What we have personally come to realise and see in our journey of brokenness and heart-healing is the tender picture of Jesus being so completely committed to a journey of intimate care, kindness, tenderness and patience. He showed me so personally how He was willing to meet me in the broken heap that I lay … and no-matter-how-long-it-would-take, He would sit there with me in tenderness and comfort and show me His ability to find every missing piece and mend my heart and that of each of our children and my husband. It was in this time of loss for us that He showed each of us individually how committed He is to the journey of heart healing. Our little boy had died from a severe series of heart defects, and we had prayed fervently for heart healing … but what God showed us as we stopped fixating on the “WHY” was that He had gathered every prayer we had prayed for heart healing and He was moving in those very same prayers to heal our broken hearts and the precious hurting hearts that He would bring our way to share our story of hope. My little boy Zac has given me the most treasured gift that I will always be grateful for … He showed me how to truly see that Jesus stands closest to the broken-hearted - always there to love and restore. He gave to each of us in our family the gift of becoming eternity minded … and His life and story has given us the greatest privilege of being able to comfort others when their hearts have shattered through child-loss by introducing them to the God of all comfort.
Yes the cup looks different than it did before, and in the journey of loss and grief it is important to acknowledge and accept that, but when you allow Him to give you a glimpse of what He is recreating with those broken pieces … it can take your breath away. You see, where we see the gaps and cracks in what is being pieced back together, He sees how beautiful that vessel becomes in allowing His light and glory to shine through. Where we focus in on why it has to be different than before … He is still at work with a plan to fill those empty gaps with gold and splendour through His healing balm and anointing. As we yield to the process of heart healing of any kind, He brings out a gold that we never had before … the reflection of His tender heart of compassion. All that He needs to begin this beautiful work, is an invitation into your pain or disappointment. He will amaze you in revealing to you how He is able to redeem and restore as our Great Redeemer.
The picture I want to leave you with is the Japanese art of mending broken ceramics. It’s called “kintsugi” which means “golden joinery”. The story of kintsugi began in the late 15th century when an artist was sent a damaged Chinese tea bowl back to China to be fixed. What he accomplished inspired this art form so much so that some people were accused of breaking prized ceramics just to have them mended back together in gold. There are beautiful art collections of these pieced back together ceramics. In fact I read that some of these art pieces are deliberately and carefully chosen for the deformity it has acquired in a badly heated kiln, then deliberately broken and repaired. A pot that would normally have been trashed is recognised as the perfect background for work in precious kintsugi with gold.
If God could inspire this beautiful art form of golden restoration, how much more magnificent the masterpiece He is recreating in our hearts and lives after any form of disappointment or brokenness. For those of you with hurting hearts today, may you glimpse the beautiful cup of hope that God has in exchange for you. Where you may only see devastation, He sees a story of restoration! May we glimpse together that golden mended cup that emanates His glory and beauty.
All my love xxx