“‘Anyone the man with a discharge touches without rinsing his hands with water must wash their clothes and bathe with water, and they will be unclean till evening.
“‘A clay pot that the man touches must be broken, and any wooden article is to be rinsed with water.
- Leviticus 15:11-12
I am forgotten as though I were dead;
I have become like broken pottery.
- Psalm 31:12
You have heard these things; look at them all.
Will you not admit them?
“From now on I will tell you of new things,
of hidden things unknown to you.
- Isaiah 48:6
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
- Revelation 21:5
I have had my nose broken three times. The first time that my nose was broken was playing American football during recess at a southern Mississippi elementary school. I was eleven years old and in the sixth grade. I was playing on defense, and I rushed to sack the quarterback, and an offensive lineman raised his elbow to prevent me from doing that, and he broke my nose.
They rushed me to the cafeteria and awaited my mother who had to leave work. She was not pleased. One of the kitchen staff had tried to get the bleeding stopped. As my mother entered the cafeteria, I took the bloody wash rag and blew my nose. A chunk of bone came out along with a lot of clotted blood.
I turned to my mother and said, “This bone needs to go back in. It fell out. It needs to go back in!” The piece of bone was no larger than a kernel of uncooked popcorn. I had never had a broken bone before. All my friends got their arms and legs reset. That piece of bone had to go back inside me.
My mother looked at the bone and said, “Don’t be disgusting!” She grabbed the rag out of my hand and threw it into the trash. She grabbed me by the arm and took me home. The next day, I returned to school with a broken nose and two black eyes. For once in my life, I had “street cred.”
But as I went home with my broken nose, my mind was fixated on that part of me in the trash can, that part that would never go back where it belonged. You can run your finger down the ridge of my nose and find the spot where there is a piece of bone missing. If you pull on my nose just below that spot, you can separate the tip of my nose from the rest. If you are not careful, you might reset the tip in the wrong place. Yes, I am forever broken.
I am like the clay pot that has touched a man with unclean discharge. David lamented that he was like that broken clay pot. But we will not remain broken forever. I will go to the grave with a broken nose, but I will arrive in Heaven with a new body. God promises that He will make all things new (everything new in the NIV).
But until God makes all things new, we will have trials. And the Scripture from Isaiah 48 tells us that we must admit our past mistakes, our past sin, and then God will start that process of introducing us to our “new things.”
Sure, when I wear a balaclava, it shoves the end of my nose off to the side in a grotesque manner, but I can still experience “new things.” God’s promises are not all for the next life. He shows us bits and pieces, just enough to let us know that He is right there with us. As someone said at the latest church prayer meeting, God is always there and He always delivers, but sometimes it seems it is barely on time – but on time. They had said it and then it sounded like a complaint. They had to reiterate that God was always on time.
But as I think back on things, do I want God to put that piece of bone back into my nose? After all, for most of my life, at present nearly 85% of it, I have been the way that I am now, with a broken nose. The resurrected Jesus still had the wounds in His hands and His side. Will we have such reminders?
Will those reminders cause us to praise God all the more?
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.