God delights to use what has been broken. He delights to display his power through what is weak, to display his strength through what is small, to display his glory through what has been shattered.
God has a special place in his heart for the weak, the weary, the downtrodden, the broken. “Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden,” he says, and “bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.” His special blessing is upon those who are poor in spirit, who are meek and mournful, who are reviled and persecuted. The faith that honors him is the faith of a child, and his power is made perfect in weakness more than in strength. He deliberately chooses what is foolish in the world to shame the wise and what is weak in the world to shame the strong. Where we tend to dispose of what has been broken, God treasures it. Where the human instinct is toward those who are confident, assertive, and self-sufficient, the divine eye is drawn to those who are humble, who are contrite in spirit, and who tremble at God’s Word. Where the world looks to those who are whole and strong, God looks to those who are weak and broken, for his specialty is bringing much from little, beauty from ashes, strength from weakness.
God does much with broken things. It was with broken leaves of sweet spices that the priests mixed the incense for the tabernacle, with broken clay jars that Gideon won his great victory over the armies of Midian, with the broken jawbone of a donkey that Samson triumphed over 1,000 Philistines, and with broken loaves and fishes that Jesus fed a crowd of 5,000. It was toward bodies broken by disease that the Lord displayed his miraculous power, and with a broken alabaster flask that Mary anointed him for his burial. It was through the breaking of bread that Jesus prophesied his suffering and death, for his body had to be broken for God to save the souls of his people. It was God’s will that the eternal Son would take on mortal flesh and his head be broken by sharp thorns, his back by brutal whips, his hands and feet by cruel nails, his side by a savage spear. His broken body was laid dead in a tomb, but through the shattering of rocks and tearing of a curtain God declared he had accepted the sacrifice. There would be no redemption, no salvation, without the broken body of the great Savior.