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Brokenness Breeds Passion

When you stop and think about it, brokenness is the beginning of relationship with God.  You cannot receive the eternal life Jesus Christ offers, unless you are willing to admit your own sin.  You have to be broken enough to admit that you are a sinner and accept Jesus' death on the cross as the payment for your sins.  John 3:16 says that when you believe in Jesus this way, you will have eternal life. 

The world's school of thought encourages us to get stronger.  We strive to avoid brokenness at all costs.  We seek to make our bodies stronger by what we eat and how we exercise.  We focus on strengthening our retirement accounts through changes in our stock portfolio.  We are always interested in new products that promise longer lasting results.  No one pursues brokenness.

On Jesus' third appearance to His disciples after His resurrection, there is evidence that sometimes brokenness breeds passion.  John ends his gospel with this event that took place at the Sea of Tiberias in chapter 21.  Seven of Jesus' disciples wound up together near their old fishing nets.  Peter was the one who suggested that they go fishing.  The seven of them got into the boat and endured a fruitless fishing expedition.  Over and over, they threw out their fishing nets, but to no avail.  It must have been discouraging for these seasoned fishermen to endure a totally wasted night.  One of them decided it was time to give up and head back to shore.  While they were about 100 yards away, someone called out to them: "Friends, haven't you any fish?"

They answered, "No" in unison.  The man from shore suggested that they throw their net on the right side of the boat.  Why they followed the instructions of this stranger, I'm not sure, but what happened when they did astounded them.  They couldn't pull the net inside the boat because there were too many fish weighing it down.  It was at that moment that John realized, "It is the Lord!" and he told Peter. 

Peter was the only disciple that jumped out of the boat and ran/swam to shore.  They were only 100 yards away, but that was too far away for Peter.  He couldn't wait to get to Jesus.  While the other six hauled in the boat and fish, Peter ran to Jesus. 

Peter's passion for Jesus developed as a result of his brokenness.  Peter, the one who had failed Jesus by denying him three times before the rooster crowed, was the only one who jumped out of the boat the moment he saw him again.  In fact, this beach event would be an opportunity for Peter to spend some time with Jesus alone, and be restored and forgiven for his betrayal.  The benefit of brokenness is evidenced in Peter's passion for Jesus.  The other disciples were content to bring home the catch and see Jesus when they got there.  Peter couldn't wait. 

Peter is a great example of how we need to respond to our own brokenness.  When you have failed God again, don't hide from Him, run to Him.  He knows how to help you, He knows what you need to be restored.  Accept your brokenness as a breeding ground for passion.  Jesus reminded the Pharisee in Luke 7:47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven–for she loved much.  But he who has been forgiven little loves little.  Run to Jesus in your brokenness, He can transform your brokenness into love for Him.  

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