By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
Just last night, Annie, her mother, and I went out to dinner. We shared good food and good conversation. It was a weeknight, so the crowd wasn’t too busy, and the food came out quickly. After dinner, we got up to leave.
As we were walking out, the sound of a broken glass cut through the buzz of conversation. Perhaps a waiter’s tray faltered or someone bumped it off a table. But if there’s one thing that can quiet the din of a restaurant it’s the explosive blast of glass fragmenting into a thousand pieces. Every eye looked in the direction of the sound. Every conversation stopped.
Well, almost every conversation.
As we were exiting, I noticed that everyone was distracted by the sound except the people employed by the restaurant. Two hostesses didn’t even take a moment to look up from the computer screen they were huddled behind. A group of waiters continued to laugh and converse without missing a beat. Another waiter focused on filling the drinks for his latest table. None of them were disturbed or distracted by the sound of broken glass.
How many times a day do they hear that sound? Probably a lot. I imagine broken glasses and plates are probably a common occurrence in busy restaurants. It happens. You clean it up and you move on. To the people working in that restaurant it was nothing new.
As I thought about this occurrence, I was reminded that many of us have grown deaf to brokenness. It can happen so easily. Like the employees of that restaurant, brokenness can become the new normal. When all we see is hurting and suffering, sometimes that’s the very thing we can become blind to.
This is why it’s important that we continually pray for God to give us new eyes each and every day. To help us see the brokenness around us that we may have missed before.
It’s easy for us to give our hurts different names, to see all that’s happening in the world and place it in a thousand different categories. But let me help you.
Anything you see that causes pain. That promotes division. That kindles hate. That destroys dignity. That fosters bitterness. That smothers wellbeing. That squelches love. That hinders neighborliness.
That’s brokenness. We have to name it. We have to see it.
But more than that, we must realize that we have an answer to such brokenness and his name is Jesus Christ. When we invite Christ into our brokenness, we find healing. It’s in him that we encounter reconciliation.
God, open our eyes and ears to the brokenness around us. Help us step into it. Let us be your hands and feet. And Lord, may your power bring newness and restoration in the broken glass of our world.