“The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” Psalm 51:17
I am not a stranger to Psalm 51. Over the past 15 years of my life, I’ve spent more time in Psalm 51 than perhaps any other Psalm in Scripture. The repentant and heartfelt words of King David in Psalm 51 have filled my prayers on more than one occasion. I’ve both wept and worshipped through the 19 verses of this Psalm, and over 15 years after my first glance at it, I found myself deep in its words again today.
Before we go any further, I want to pose this question to you. Take a minute to absorb it before rushing on to the rest.
Are you in a place of brokenness right now?
That question might sound somewhat extreme to you, but take a deeper look. Brokenness comes in many forms. It’s not reserved for the life-shattering events that take place. It’s also the seemingly “lesser things” too. Brokenness is unchecked pride. Brokenness is unforgiveness. Brokenness is doubt and fear. Brokenness is addiction.
Brokenness can be many things, but rarely have I considered brokenness to be beautiful. Because brokenness is painful, I’ve wrongfully assumed in times past that it simply can’t be purposeful—until I grasped what Psalm 51:17 was all about.
When you and I finally come to a place of brokenness over our sin, when we begin to agree with God about the things that break His heart, when we choose to repent over the things that have caused separation between us and Him, God sees that brokenness as beautiful. When we humbly come before God with all of our broken pieces, ceasing our attempts to piece back together what our own waywardness has shattered, and instead place those broken pieces into the hands of the Healer, there is such beauty in that. It’s beauty from ashes.
Because it’s often in our weakest moments that we finally realize our great need for God’s strength.
Because when we’re broken over our sin, we will finally find freedom from it.
Because when our hearts are broken in repentance, God will not reject us.
Because broken is beautiful.