by Paula Harrington
Can you think of a family in the Bible more devastated by sin than David’s family? From cheating spouses, to rebellious children, rape and incest, something terrible was always happening in his family. David’s sin led to serious consequences. The Lord told David, through Nathan, that the sword would never leave his house and it did not (2 Samuel 12:10).
Do you know families like this? Families so entrenched in sin that the consequences will appear for many years. If you don’t know them personally, you’ve probably seen them on television or read about them in the newspaper. Torn apart by sin, these families struggle day to day in worldly chaos. We know them and may even be them.
The world offers broken families while Jesus offers peace. “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled” (John 14:27). Later in John 16:33, he reminds us that he has overcome the world. In a broken home, with Jesus, we can have peace.
When one thinks of broken hearts in the Bible, the story of Mary and Martha at the sickness and death of their beloved brother is one of the saddest (John 11). Can you picture these two sisters kneeling beside Lazarus in agony praying for his recovery, praying that Jesus would arrive before it was too late?
We have all had to contend with broken hearts. Whether it is the loss of a loved one or the disappointment of misfortune, we have experienced the pain and heartache of this world.
The world offers broken hearts while Jesus offers completeness and love. In Colossians 2:10, the apostle Paul tells us that in Christ the Lord makes us whole. Christ tells us, “He who has my commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves me and he who loves me, will be loved by my Father” (John 14:24). Only Jesus can heal our broken hearts.
Can you hear Peter in Mark 14:29 say, “Even if all are made to stumble, yet I will not!” Later he says, “Even if all your followers turn their backs on you, I won’t!” Sadly, we know what takes place shortly after he makes this declaration. He stumbles and denies his friend. In Luke 22:61-62, Peter realizes what he has done.
Tears come to my eyes every time I read this passage. On some level, I can relate to the pain of Jesus, but mostly I can identify with the shame of Peter. We are no different than Peter. We, too, have broken promises to friends. We have even broken promises to Jesus.
Jesus does not break his promises. He tells us that he has gone to prepare a place for us and he will return for us (John 14:1-6). He provides us with an assurance so true and real that we can base our entire lives on it. When all have turned away from us, when we have been disappointed and been a disappointment, when all is lost, Jesus is ready to affirm his love, his peace, and comfort.
We are a broken people living in a broken world full of shattered families, hearts, and promises. Only Jesus can cure our brokenness. Seek him today.