Her Broken Seashells

My parents have a beach house, so a few times a year we’ve been fortunate enough to have family time there.  In the past, my children have found almost every type of shell imaginable and common to the area:  conch shells, clam shells, even fossilized turtle heads.  They take much pride in adorning the beach house with their findings. 

A couple of years ago while we were there for my birthday,  I headed out for my daily walk/run to the pier, and Haley decided to come along.  This was a first in our history of beach vacations.  I knew this walk would take longer than usual, so I decided to enjoy her company rather than dwell on our pace.  Good idea, since she was much more thrilled over the seashells and writing messages on the beach than seriously walking.

We wrote scriptures in the sand hoping someone would come along and read.  Haley began collecting. Her shell collection grew as we walked.  I noticed that not one shell was whole.  I said, “Haley, sweetie they’re all broken.  If we’re going to carry all of these shells, why don’t we find ones that haven’t been broken.”  She insisted, even marveled, that they were all beautiful and we must take them home!  She had grandeur ideas of making jewelry and craft projects.  Enamored by her creativity and love for every shell, I watched and listened, as she handled them all with care and singled out common shells as breathtaking.

 

I thought this is how God really does want us to see people.  This is the way He must see us!  It’s how He wants us to see ourselves too!  No matter what, we are beautiful to Him, even through our brokenness.  Just like Haley’s shell collection, each one had been hit hard enough by waves to crack and break.  But each one, though imperfect had appeal to her, and to God.  He’s churning those broken shells for a purpose, to create sand and give the ocean its borders.  We will face crashing waves in life, some so hard they may injure us.  When we look at ourselves or others and see common messes with cracks and jagged edges, God sees beauty.  We have appeal to Him.

Like Haley loved every shell she picked up, God loves every person He’s created.  He wants to pick us up and carry us in our weakness.  He delights in us and sees the plans He has for our lives, though we can’t always see.  He has creative ideas for us more special than Haley’s jewelry making.  Sometimes the process of being broken helps us become what He needs us to become, like the sand!

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

15 thoughts on “Her Broken Seashells

  1. Beautiful post Rivera, I love the ocean and especially appreciate the crafting of our Creator! Tonight, I’m sitting soaking Him in… and what He taught me over the weekend away. ~ Blessings from Maine sister, Amy :)

  2. Jeremiah 29:11 is my favorite verse in the bible. It’s His ultimate forcast for our future. It’s a wonderful reminder that He is in control and He already knows our destiny. Love reading your beautifully written devotions. Thank you, Rivera. Love ya… Michelle

  3. Such a beautiful picture of truly how God sees us: as beautiful and perfect. He doesn’t see the brokenness of our present, but the beauty of what will we will be on completion. I know that He has a whole lot more breaking to do before He is finished with His project in me! And one word He keeps repeating to me is to look beyond myself, to see others as He sees them.

    I love to hear how Haley has eyes to see far more than what the average eye can see. God will surely use her ability to look beyond the superficial.

    And I love your reminder that He wants to pick us up and carry us in our weakness. I have so much joy and peace in the knowledge that I never walk alone.
    Loving life in the hands of the Master Craftsman! Laurie

  4. So enjoyed this!! Thanks Ver for your faithfulness in writing your blog…I look forward to it each week. I love you very much…but I especially love Jesus light that shines so bright through you and your writing <3
    Just read this last night…
    Psalm 51:17
    The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

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