GenerousChurch

The Paradox of Generosity in our Brokenness

February 4, 2020

Question: How has your generosity been thwarted in the past by the belief that you're too broken to be used by God?


In this clip: Elisa Morgan of M.O.P.S. reminds us that God uses broken vessels as part of His infinite generosity, and we are no different.



Question: What scars are you carrying today that could be used by God to bless someone else in their brokenness?

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A 2017 survey conducted by the Barna Group revealed that 8 in 10 Americans said they’re pretty sure that “God helps those who help themselves” is a verse found in the Bible. More than half of the people responding were strongly convinced that this is also a major message found in the Bible.

Does God help those who help themselves?


While this message might be useful for motivating your children or some employees to apply themselves and work hard, it’s not found in the Bible and is not central to the message of the Bible. When Christians embrace it as an operating principle, it can lead to great confusion and discouragement. Why? Because if (and when) we fail to measure up to some perceived performance standards—God’s or our own—or we focus on not being enough, it’s easy to conclude we’re disqualified in relationship to God.

God’s family is full of broken people

"The good news is the Bible is a story full of people who are in need of help, who cannot help themselves." [Tweet This


Elisa Morgan describes it this way in the video clip: “God’s family lineage is broken.”

When you read the Bible, you discover that almost every main character (other than Jesus Christ) is broken in some way. Noah revealed his brokenness in a moment of drunkenness (Gen 9:20-21), Moses in a moment of rage killed an Egyptian (Ex 2:11-15), Jonah refused God’s calling, preferring the destruction of a city (Jonah 1), Peter denied Jesus (Lk 22:54-62), and Paul killed Christians (Acts 22:4).

As Elisa says, “God uses the broken.” She adds that “brokenness is not a penalty you have to carry. It is a pathway to abundance flowing from you to others.” Paul describes it this way in 2 Corinthians 4:7, “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”

God’s generosity is good news for broken people


The good news is that God didn’t wait to send Jesus into the world until we were able to do our part and “help ourselves.” Romans 5:8 says, “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” God loves the broken. 

"The message of the Bible repeatedly reveals God taking the initiative toward broken humanity out of his generous love." [Tweet This


God not only loves you the way you are but he loves you too much to leave you the way you are. His generous love flows downhill, not simply to rescue and redeem us, restoring us to right relationship so that we might participate in his life and love, but also to increasingly transform us into the likeness of Jesus Christ. Paul describes it this way in Philippians 1:6,

"There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears." (The Message)

God uses the broken because God loves the broken with his abundantly generous love.

Follow up:


  • Write this good news on a 3x5 card: “God uses the broken because God loves the broken with his abundantly generous love.”
  • Place this vital reality in a place where you’ll see it every day and be reminded to rehearse it. Use it as a prompt to ask God to make his generous love more real to you.
  • Consider memorizing Paul’s words from Philippians 1:6 (using The Message translation) and personalizing it in the following way:
"There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in me would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears."

[Tweet This Article]

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