How to Live out Your Calling in Seasons of Brokenness
The sun rises white over a row of spindly pines, and I’m not sure I want to face another gray morning.
It’s been a difficult season. It seems the storms have blown in from every direction, and just when we get dried off, the tempest returns and knocks us down all over again.
I’m grappling for answers about God’s goodness when a message appears on my phone. A new friend who lives on the other side of town wants to get together for coffee. She tells me she doesn’t know much about God and that she’d like to know more.
I want to say yes, but I just can’t see showing up in my brokenness and speaking the kind of truth she needs to hear today.
Ignoring the message on my phone, I open my Bible and read the familiar words of 2 Corinthians 12:9:
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
I stare at the words on the page, and I am reminded that the calling on my life is to love those God places before me. I’m reminded that God doesn’t call me to show up with answers; instead, he calls me to show up, even when I am weak and broken, and allow him to work through me in his power.
A Hidden Opportunity
Brokenness can be the perfect platform through which God’s light shines most brightly in our lives.
Picking up the phone, I respond to my new friend’s message and invite her to my house for coffee and conversation. She arrives three hours later, and we sit on the couch and talk about real life. I don’t hide my pain or pretend to understand why God has permitted it. We shed a few tears together as I let her love me in my sadness. Sometimes the best way to love another person is to first receive the love she has to offer.
The truth is that we are called to love others, even in our most painful seasons. These broken moments are often the moments God uses to bridge hearts in a way that serve his kingdom-purposes.
The Blessings that Follow Transparency
If you are struggling to live out your calling in your season of brokenness, here are three reasons to love those God
sets before you, even when you feel broken:
1 | Other People Need Love More than They Need Answers
I didn’t want to meet with a new friend in my brokenness and with no answers about why God had permitted the difficult season. Sadly, this is where we often get evangelism wrong. We think we need to have all of the theologically correct answers and appropriate Bible verses for life’s hard questions. What we overlook is the reality that the world is desperate to see Jesus in action. When others see the way Jesus meets us in our pain, they are drawn into a love they can’t fathom or explain.
2| Vulnerability Fosters Trust
When we let others see our hearts – when we invite them into our pain and trust them with our struggles – we lay a foundation of trust. A wise mentor once told me that if you want others to know they are safe to share the hard parts of their lives with you, it can be helpful to “go first,” to let them see your weaknesses and offer the gift of emotional intimacy exhibited through trust. When the people in our lives see that we trust them with our pain, they will feel safer coming to us with their own struggles
about faith and life.
3| We’re all Broken
We live in a world that falls short of heaven. No one escapes pain and suffering. Early in my own search for Jesus, I was often intimidated by followers of Christ who seemed to have no struggles. From the outside, their lives seemed perfect, and it appeared they had all the right answers.
When we allow others to see that we are far from perfect, we offer space to build human solidarity. Our shared brokenness becomes the common ground onto which we carry the healing hope of Jesus, and this is where lives are transformed.
The same mentor who encouraged me to “go first” often reminded me that the greatest gift I can offer to others is an encounter with Jesus. When I let Jesus shine through the cracks of my broken heart, I carry his presence to others in the most humble way.
Your Brokenness Is Not The End
My new friend hugged me hard before she left and told me she’d be praying for me, and I let her love
me. Sometimes the best way to love people into God’s kingdom is to be real, be broken, and receive what they have to offer.
Someone in your life needs you today – in this very moment. Someone needs you to listen, to share
your story, and to create a common ground where trust is built. Someone needs you to talk about your
lowest moment and how Jesus met you there. Your brokenness might be the very instrument God wants to use to reveal his love and tenderness in another person’s life. Your calling waits, even in your seasons of brokenness.
Claim Your Free Gift!
Stacey is a lover of the woods, a passionate and imperfect follower of Christ, the mother of two
blue-eyed children, the wife of Darrell, and much more. A certified special education teacher, Stacey is
on leave from the classroom for a season of chasing frogs and playing in creeks with her little ones. She
writes words about her walk of faith in the in-between moments, and she mentors and teaches.