It’s been a different sort of Bible reading the last few weeks. Instead of larger portions of Scripture speaking to my heart, it has been a word, a phrase, or a single verse grabbing my attention and thoughts.
The psalmist David was a humble shepherd boy who became king over God’s people. From a simple and poor beginning, he went to being a powerful and wealthy man. He wrote these words in Psalm 51:17:
“The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” (NLT)
David, a man after God’s own heart, knew the sacrificial system and was wealthy enough to be able to bring many sacrifices to the Lord. But he also knew this would not please the Lord, for the Lord was looking for a heart yielded to God’s ways. God was looking for a heart willing to obey and seek Him above all other.
And He continues to look for the same today.
God desires a broken spirit from us. But we don’t want to be broken, for the world tells us we need to be successful, perfect, and productive. We long to be fixed and yet, the process only begins when we are broken. The world despises broken things but God does not – He longs for us to come to Him with our broken spirits.
“The hardened soil of the soul must be broken up if it is to receive God’s commands and respond to him.”
(from the Holman Old Testament Commentary, Vol. 11, page 269)
It is from a brokenness that He can then do His beautiful work of redemption and restoration. As we lower ourselves before Him, from our lives will arise the sweet aroma of Christ that will spread to this broken world.