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Categorized | From the Pulpit

Picking up the pieces

Pastor Kristi J. Rhodes  

Hillcrest Community Church

5994 18 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs


Sometimes life has a way of taking our breath away and it hurts so bad, we’re sure there must be blisters on our hearts. These last few weeks have been extremely hard on our community, with tragedy affecting so many of our young people. Sometimes it seems like more than one can bear.

We cry out to God and ask WHY Lord? Why is this happening? When will the hurting stop? Please stop the pain.

The good news is that God knows how bad things are, but He promises they won’t stay that way. Soon we’ll trade all this suffering for something much better. In Isa. 41:10 (NIV), God promises us that He Himself will be right there with us and will not leave us to face tragedy alone. He said, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand!” God never said life wouldn’t be hard but the promise is that we would be held by Him when it is.

One thing that I have noticed that has been a beautiful thing, is witnessing the community coming together in a time of great tragedy. God tells us to mourn with those who mourn. I see countless people coming to the aid of those hurting, wanting to help in any way possible. Prayers are actually reaching all around the world as word spreads of the need. Isa. 61:1-3 expresses beautifully how the Spirit of God is sent to comfort the brokenhearted and that He also will make something beautiful out of the ashes and broken pieces. It reminds me of a beautiful piece of mosaic art.

The mosaic is made from broken pieces of this and that, some leftovers and other damaged pieces. At first glance, those broken pieces don’t seem to be related to each other. The sharp edges had the ability to cut and damage. But when the pieces were placed together and the light shines, the broken pieces are transformed into something beautiful.

As we look over the course of our lives, often broken pieces seem to stick out. Many of those pieces have sharp edges: difficult memories that continue to jag and cut into our hearts. Other pieces have been rubbed smooth and shiny; we recognize them as things of beauty. Up close, we may not see the pattern. But, when we look from the right distance, the pieces come together and, even though it may be difficult to admit, something of beauty is created. Indeed, our lives are mosaics: God takes our shattered pieces and creates something beautiful.

Perhaps as you look over the broken pieces of your life that are still sharp enough to cut and wound your spirit, you will in time, be able to look back at them and find that a beautiful mosaic is emerging.

When God answers our prayers we say, “Oh God is SO good”(as we should). We must also remember that when God doesn’t answer exactly how we were expecting, or how we wanted, that God is still just as good!

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