I absolutely love the song by Matthew West “Broken Things“. (You can see lyrics here.) I’ll be honest I have had a struggle with this song though. Lyrics have an impact on our lives. Just as every word we speak carries weight, they carry impact in our lives and the lives of others. This is the reason that some popular Christian songs are not my cup of tea. The Bible talks of our suffering being for a moment, so why would I want to listen to or sing a song talking about my years of pain and suffering as a Christian. Let me be clear. I am not expecting my life to be perfect, I know that my attitude toward it will be different. Charles Swindol said that “life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it”. Thus I pose the questions…how are you reacting to things?
How Broken Things Speaks To Me
I often have to address thoughts in my head of not being good enough. It’s not always dramatic, whiny reactions. Most of the time it is very logical thoughts like, “I have not gone to Bible school, I should not be the one teaching”. In fact, most of those creeping thoughts I battle with as I contemplate my blog. I am working on a blog now that is a delicate subject and I am not sure I am the right person to write about it…but I am going too.
Let’s talk more about the song. One of the lines is “The pages of history they tell me it’s true. That it’s never the perfect; it’s always the ones with the scars that You use.” This turn of phrase is powerful to me. King David was a great leader…but he was not perfect. Peter is the “rock” of the church and he was not perfect either. Before Paul’s conversion he was persecuting Christians. You can look at Jacob, Moses, Noah and many others and see that perfect is not the requirement. Grace of God is the requirement. The grace that redeemed us and made us perfect through Christ.
The song ends with “Grace is a kingdom, with gates open wide. There’s a seat at the table just waiting for you. So, come on inside.” There is no secret handshake. We do not have to save X amount of souls to qualify. We do not have to go on mission trips or attend Bible college. We are qualified by our relationship with God and his grace. We have to accept it. Grace is free…we only have to accept it. I do not consider myself a sinner. In fact, I think it is a bit of an oxymoron to call yourself a Christian and a sinner. I am a Christian, sometimes I sin and I have to repent, but being a sinner is not what I get up everyday to do. This is where the “Broken Things” come into play for me. My nature was made new. I have joy instead of sorrow. I have received healing physically, mentally and emotionally. I am still human and boy I can certainly mess up when I am not paying attention. This brings me to the beginning of the song, “If grace was a kingdom I stopped at the gate, thinking I don’t deserve to pass through after all the mistakes that I’ve made. Oh but I heard a whisper, as Heaven bent down said, Child, don’t you know that the first will be last and the last get a crown” We do not deserve to pass through on our own merits, Grace is the ticket. The key to entry. I could be last but even the last is cherished.