Broken Beauty

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The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. It cuts right through the heart of this beautiful countryside and is the first large canyon on the Yellowstone River downstream from Lower Yellowstone Falls. For twenty-four miles, it gives way to the river, and as the river flows, the landscape experiences loss, depletion, and change in its original composition.

“Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later.” Romans 8:18.

As I look at this beautiful sight, I can’t help but think about how many of life’s circumstances and challenges have cut right through my hopes and dreams and many times have broken my heart. How different my life is because of this. Maybe yours is too.

My hopes and dreams weren’t even bad. They were good, and I would dare to say, in my own feeble estimation, some were even godly. Yet, the river of life’s events flowed right through them, with no permission from me, carving away, eroding this hope and that dream, until I stand back and look. And I realize this life is nothing like I thought it would be – hoped it would be.

My heart looks like the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Broken in two, parts of it gone forever, hopes and dreams washed away.

Yet I notice something about this altered landscape, unrecognizable compared to its original form. It is amazingly beautiful in spite of the losses it has endured. In fact, it’s much more beautiful than it was before the erosion, the change, the washing away.

That’s what I believe about the Christian’s life. We may not see it now. But there is coming a day when we will recognize that this broken beauty is actually preferable to what we pictured as happiness and success. It will not come easily and quickly, but Scripture tells us that what we suffer now can’t be compared to the glory Christ will reveal to us. That’s why we don’t give up in spite of the continual carving away of the river of circumstances. God is faithful to His Word.

Our broken lives are more useful and beautiful than the illusion of perfection could ever be.

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