by Ted Kyle
Over and over, the story of God's dealings with His Chosen People in the Old Testament is a story of leading them to brokenness. And after their brokenness always follows a sweet promise of restoration.
Typical of this pattern is God's speech to the rebellious Jews in Hosea: "And now will I discover her lewdness in the sight of her lovers, and none shall deliver her out of mine hand. I will also cause all her mirth to cease" (Hos. 2:10,11). He brought them to brokenness, so that they could see themselves as He sees them.
Then followed the precious promise: "Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her. And I will give her vineyards from thence, and the Valley of Achor (i.e., "trouble) for a door of hope" (vv. 14,15). God pledges that He will turn their trouble into triumph. He will restore the relationship which they had broken: "I will say to them which were not my people, ‘Thou art my people'; and they shall say, ‘Thou art my God'" (v. 23).
Is it different in the New Testament? Our rebellions may be less obvious, but let us ask ourselves: Do we, too, slight Almighty God? Do we ignore His word and His presence? Do we too often follow the world instead of the Lord? If we have broken fellowship with our Lord and our God, we need to come in brokenness. We need to not only acknowledge who God is, but also who and what we are-that we are sinners in desperate need of forgiveness.
That is why Paul the Apostle says: "But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup" (1 Cor. 11:28). Brothers and sisters, let us examine ourselves, let us allow the Holy Spirit to point out to our hearts anything that prevents us from full fellowship with our Lord. Then let us come in brokenness to His table of reconciliation.