Like clamoring music to my deafening ears, I faintly heard the crisp clash of glass breaking against the pavement. Slipping from my fingertips and tumbling to the earth below, the once beautiful glass mug now lay in ruins at my feet. Standing barefoot in the kitchen, I tried to inch myself away from the sink and near the closest counter. Quickly grabbing the broom and dustpan before my parents might see, I was embarrassed at the unplanned disaster. With a lowered head and frown that needed to be turned upside down, I began to sulk in shame for my attempted good deeds.

As with any suitable set of birth-givers, however, mom and dad knew that I needed help. They called me out of my shame, reminding me that everyone makes mistakes. And as silly as this accident of broken glass was, it got me thinking that perhaps there is beauty to be seen in brokenness.  Suppose there is grace, refinement, and elegance to be viewed in the brokenness of breakthroughs. 

Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve been dealing with anxiety for far too long. 

Perhaps it’s the fact that I’m tired of beating myself up day after day with self-abusive comments.

Comments that sting, “You’re ugly,” “All they see is your acne,” “Your IBS/PMS define you.”

Sharp words that pierce the skin with, “You’re far too skinny to be worthy of love,” “He will never love you because you’re too much and not enough.” 

Vicious remarks that feel like mortars being thrown at a martyr. Bricks lodged into who we used to be, revealing that maybe we aren’t dying to Christ with these hidden assertions, but dying for selfish gain (that isn’t a gain at all, but wounding and inflicting self-hatred). 

Because at the end of the day, harsh words beating yourself up don’t help anyone. They don’t make Christ happy, nor do they make you more Christ-like than anyone else. In fact, if gone unchecked for too long, they become the breeding ground for self-pity, loathing, selfishness, despair, isolation, and depression, all things the Lord never wants for us. 

If we choose to present our flaws to our Creator, though, He can restore and make us new. His power can transform those thoughts, sins, and brokenness, creating something far more beautiful. Regardless of whether a broken glass is worthy of being ashamed of or not, I hope you understand my point with this.

When we are broken by our sins, struggles, or constant inability to live in perfection, let that serve as a reminder that we are not Christ, but we can strive to be more like Him. Let the actions convict you, pray to the Holy Spirit, and ask Him for help. He can bring you from a fragmented and damaged state to something beautiful through the process of restoration.  But never allow the idol with which you have fallen or the struggle with which you cannot shake become the consumption of your thoughts, words, deeds, and ultimately, your identity. 

Mulling and obsessing over what you did wrong in thought rather than asking for forgiveness and letting it stay with Christ will bring you more harm than good. That is like saying, “Okay, God, here is my brokenness, but I need to feel more guilty so that I won’t do it again.” It doesn’t make sense!

True reconciliation and breakthrough come when we confess our sins and struggles to Him, ask Him to help and fight for us, and leave them in His hands.  It does not look like constantly replaying the event over and over again in your mind so that you can be eaten alive by grief, remorse, and sorrow.  Yes, there is an evident and crucial place and need for repentance, but after you’ve talked to God, He gives you grace, not condemnation. He gives sanctification without demanding perfection. He gives you the freedom to look your struggle square in the eye and say, “You don’t define me,” even when you feel like you’re broken and have lost all control.

For as long as I’ve known what it means to worry, fear, and have anxiety, I have come to a place of acceptance that this side of Heaven, I will always struggle with those things. Some days are better than others, but ceased to exist will be the days that I continue to beat myself up about them. I am continually asking God to help me and free me from these things, but there is a reason for the gnawing pain of my process

Undoubtedly, there is beauty in my being made broken, even if it is so the breakthrough of Christ can reside within me. After all, Jesus, the perfect lamb of God, was made broken so that we could be healed.

Undoubtedly, there is beauty in my being made broken, even if it is so the breakthrough of Christ can reside within me.

Isaiah 53:5 remarks, “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5, NIV).

There is no need to shame yourself for your struggles. Jesus already paid the price for you on the cross; He wants you to live in the freedom of His life given for you.

He was beaten so we could be whole.

He was whipped so we could be healed.

He was made broken so that we could experience a breakthrough with Him.