A Broken Piece
It's a broken piece of porcelain. Pocket-sized. Orange on the outside; white on the inside. Shaped like a wavy parallelogram. I turn over the little piece in my hands and gaze on it, taking care not to cut my hand on its jagged edges. It tells me something and the message is clear; like sweet true notes of a nightingale. I listen. Perhaps I should keep this little piece to remind me of the truth it taught me.
The story begins with our perfect Easter weekend. After 16 long years, I had the joy and pleasure of having my (littlest) big brother visit us in Adelaide with his lovely wife and beautiful daughter. What made it even more special was that they were arriving on a day that was wrought with memories. It was on Mum’s 90th birth anniversary. We’d been looking forward to celebrating it with her this year, and her sudden death 3 months before was still very raw in our hearts. It hurt that she wasn’t around to be honoured.
And so – their visit happened at exactly the right time. It was a great blessing to be able to share memories of Mama together on Good Friday – her birthday. On Saturday, we spent a gladsome day out together by the Torrens River picnicking on its banks. That evening we celebrated my son’s 25th birthday with them and my brother and sis in law from Whyalla. We enjoyed an evening of cake and balloons, drinks and dinner, games and chatter, love and laughter. Having 5 other family members to share our Easter breakfast was also unique. Our hearts were full after our special weekend together.
In the days following, my fridge bulged over with leftovers. Yay! One by one, I emptied the dishes and washed them. One night I washed a Pyrex dish given to us by my sister Ranmali as a wedding present 29 years before. When they were new, I’d use the set of three beautiful dishes she’d given me only when we had friends over. But by and by – as we realised that using plastics wasn’t good for us – I began pulling out my good china for everyday use as well. In fact, every morning for many years, I’ve steamed the vegetables for my husband’s lunch in this lovely orange Pyrex dish.
I wiped it that day and bent down to place it inside its matching larger dish. But as I did, the dish slid off my hands and fell with a resounding crash to the ground. At least fifty pieces of jagged porcelain scattered all over my kitchen floor. Sadly, I swept up the mess and threw away the broken pieces. I’d miss it. It had 29 years of good memories and was still very useful. I was about to close the cupboard that housed them when I looked down at the larger dish which was inside the cupboard.
One little piece of orange porcelain sat quietly inside it. It seemed to say to me: ‘This is where I belong.’ It was true. The set of three dishes had sat one inside the other. The broken dish had belonged inside the larger one. I bent down and picked the little piece. And the significance of it struck me – a whisper from God Himself.
Most of the broken pieces of that lovely dish were now reposing in our dust bin. But one brave piece had done something incredible. While the rest of them had no choice but be strewn all over my kitchen floor – this little one had jumped into and found refuge exactly where it was meant to be. Inside the larger vessel where it had always belonged. A broken piece? Ah! A wise little piece – which had found its way home.
Are you lost today? Hurting? Have you found that life’s crashes have sent you hurtling far into the unknown? You may be broken but there’s a Potter who’s looking for you. You can enter His heart and find a resting place there, like no other. Isaiah 42 tells us what Jesus came to do: “A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice.”
Are you waiting for justice to come to you? Are you a bruised reed that is close to breaking point? Come under the shelter of His wings. He is our Comfort and our Peace – our Hope and our Deliverer. No one who comes to Him will He turn away disappointed. Every broken piece can find their way home, because that’s where every piece belongs.
Find rest in His presence. He calls you.
Bring Him your pain and sadness. He cares.
“Come to me all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” JESUS - Matthew 11:28