So my son and I were planning on heading up to northern Minnesota recently to do a little grouse and squirrel hunting. We woke up early and made our way out to the truck at 6:00 a.m. while it was still dark to get a chance at some of those early birds. After we had loaded the truck…we climbed in…I turned the key…only to find that the truck would not start. I turned the key…the starter would engage and the engine would turn over…but there was no sign that the engine even wanted to attempt to run. I knew I was low on fuel, so it seemed a simple solution to get some gas and try it again. I grabbed my empty gas cans and threw them into my wife’s van…ok…not true…I gently placed them into the van so as not to spill any drops of residual fuel. (Also, I am sure someone will take issue with the fact that I called it my wife’s van…as if it’s her responsibility to take care of the kids because the minivan is a mom’s vehicle…it’s not just a mom’s vehicle…grandmothers can drive them too…I’m joking…I’m joking…although it is true). In any case…wouldn’t you know it…the van wouldn’t start….battery dead. I have come to the discovery that when children play in a vehicle…and leave the lights on and doors open…it drains the battery…weird huh? What does it take for children to learn this?...maybe if I took away their iPad charging cables they would come to realize that batteries go dead when there is no source to charge them. Anyway, I put the charger on the van battery…about 15 minutes later…we are heading to the gas station…we get the gas…we bring it back…put it in the truck…truck still won’t start. It is becoming rather obvious that I have bigger problems with the truck than just being out of gas. After 2 hours of struggle, my wife graciously offers us to use “her” van…yes…I said it again! But seriously! It’s ok! She likes “her” van! It has heated seats!
While my son and I are gone…all I can think about is, “What am I going to do with the truck when I get home?” I find myself hoping beyond hope, that I will arrive home and have found that the truck has somehow “fixed” itself. So, after chasing one bird, and killing one squirrel, my son and I arrive home, and the first thing I do, is to try and start the truck. Nothing has changed. The truck is still broken.
It was absurd for me to think that somehow, my truck would have any ability, to repair itself…yet, that is exactly what I had hoped for. Ironically, I find that I treat my spiritual self in the manner. The truth is that I am broken…and as much as I think that maybe I can fix my own brokenness…I can’t. In fact, it’s absurd for me to think that I can. How many times have we struggled with sin…you know…the sin…that one sin that keeps rearing itself in our lives…gossip, hatred, lust, infidelity, drunkenness…the list goes on…and just when we think WE have achieved victory…there it is again…and we find ourselves once again at the bottom of the pit of self hate asking, “why can’t I stop?” Well…it’s because we can’t. We cannot fix our brokenness. It’s silly to think that we can obtain purity without Christ…yet, we are called to a life of purity…so what choice do we have…but Jesus.
Our choice boils down to just two options. #1, stay broken. #2, Ask Jesus for help.
He promises that he will fix our brokenness…and lead us into purity. Ephesians 4:17-5:20 is filled with the call to purity, but, in the midst of the call is Christ. Christ, who calls us into purity, leads us to purity and longs to make us to look more like him.
My truck has been repaired. I performed what is called the "dump truck" method to access the fuel pump. Though my truck is up and running...I wish I found the repairs to "my brokenness" coming as simply. That however, is not the case...but, the Lord uses the journey through my brokenness to bring about greater character in me...which begins to look more like His. It's His work...not my own.