Finding Redemption in Brokenness

“Surely, God’s had it with you now,” my inner voice taunted, convinced I had exhausted my quota of God’s grace. My recent failures played on repeat in my mind, as I lay in the mire of their dismal consequences. Hopelessness and anxiety formed a tag team against me. It’s one thing to suffer for doing good— that’s commendable (1 Peter 3:17). It’s another thing to experience the various pains and disappointments that come with being in a broken world— we know that our present sufferings are being redeemed in God’s eternal work (Romans 8:18-25). But what about suffering due to the consequences of sin? How do we respond when we experience brokenness because of our disobedience? 

1. Run to Jesus and Confess

Like Adam and Eve, our natural inclination when we sin is to hide in shame. Perhaps, like me, we fear God’s rejection after failure. But think about how God responded to Adam and Eve. He went and found them. We cannot hide from an all-knowing and ever-loving Father. Secondly, God remains faithful, even when we are not (2 Timothy 2:13).

Hebrews 4:16 encourages us, “Let us approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” God’s grace is sufficient for every situation. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). 

Resist the urge to run, hide or give up. Don’t be discouraged. According to Psalm 51:17 (NLT), “The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” Confess your sin and allow Jesus to free you from the burden of its weight. 

2. Trust God, the Father

God’s character, revealed over and over in the lives of the imperfect people in the Bible, demonstrates that God is a good, loving, gracious, and merciful Father. He is the daddy who lovingly provides for his children, delights in them, and even sings over them (Zephaniah 3:17). 

But like a good parent, God also disciplines his children as an expression of his love. Proverbs 3:11-12 says “My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.” 

Discipline isn’t fun—neither for the parent nor the child, but it’s necessary to protect a child and help him or her mature. “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it” (Hebrews 12:11). And best of all, God is right there with us through it, promising never to leave nor forsake us in Hebrews 13:5. 

I’ve found great comfort in Micah 7. In the chapter, the nation of Israel is experiencing the hand of God’s discipline (again) for their sin but they trust God’s character. They know their heavenly father loves them and they accept his rebuke.

“Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea” (Micah 7:18-19).

The Israelites trusted God would be merciful and compassionate towards them. Their affliction was but for a season. Keep praying and trusting God. He is working all things out for your good and His glory (Romans 8:28).

3. Don’t Look Back

Any reminders of our past failures aren’t coming from God. Isaiah 43:25 says “I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” We need to remind ourselves of this when our own hearts condemn us. “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ” (Romans 8:1).

If you’re struggling with moving past your failure because you “should’ve known better,” consider this: Are you greater than God? Of course not. Don’t reject God’s precious gift for which his Son paid dearly once and for all. 

In cases where we’ve sinned against others, it’s right for us to apologize and make amends where possible. But don’t let any external voices condemn you or hold your past against you either. 

Friend, Scripture assures us, “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6). Let the Holy Spirit continue his work in you and press on. “…But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).