I attended a statewide meeting of Baptists several years ago felt like I needed to be watching ceiling tiles and checking out cracks in the floor. Speakers spouted lots of catastrophic imagery.
As the seasonal Christmas tune says, “The weather outside was frightful.” It was constant rain one day and blow-me-down wind the next. But those natural conditions were nothing compared to the forecast from inside the building.
A seminary president said an earthquake had occurred in the Southern Baptist Convention and a tsunami is on the way. A pastor said, “When God wants to do an impossible task, He takes an impossible man and crushes him.”
Then he said God wants us to be “broken before the Lord.”
Other speakers implied that unless we are crushed, broken, humbled, living in dangerous places, bruised and trampled we will not be in condition for God to use.
I got the sense that I need to be like Private Beetle Bailey after Sarge has beaten him into an unrecognizable pulp.
But I knew what everyone was talking about. Until we are willing to deconstruct the “self” we’ve so arduously built, we’re not very usable to God. We’ll get in the way because we have our own agendas and are subject to our own self-constructed limitations.
God does not want to break us for no good reason. He just wants to crack the shell to get to the nut. Or for you northerners, he wants to crack the ice to get to the fish.
We spend a lot of time painting, patching and primping the veneer to make ourselves presentable to God. But He’s most interested in what’s hiding beneath. If He needs to take a whack at that shell, He will.
It might be better for you to start the deconstruction ahead of time.