A Broken Window in a Broken World

Author: Allison Wilson Lee — Host: Dylan KraayenbrinkPosted on: June 4, 2024

Unlocked: Daily Devotions for Teens
A Broken Window in a Broken World

READ: MATTHEW 5:43-47; JOHN 16:29-33

My brother was selected to participate in his middle school’s play, so my family gladly showed up to watch the performance. While we sat in the audience, some unknown person crept into the parking lot and broke into our minivan. Although the would-be thief found nothing to steal, this individual did leave a mound of broken glass and a shattered window in our vehicle.

I felt violated. More so, I felt angry. This person had no right to do this! I also felt annoyed that this meant I couldn’t drive our van to my own school while we waited to have it repaired. Instead, my parents taped plastic over the busted-out window and dropped me off on campus. Because my mom needed to drive to work afterward, I arrived so early that the school hadn’t opened its doors yet. As I sat waiting to enter, I fumed about the inconvenience a stranger had caused because they wanted what wasn’t theirs. The person who damaged our van didn’t have any right to harm our family’s property. Feeling anger about this situation was natural. Over time, though, I realized I believed I had a right to avoid the problems other people face in this broken, sinful world. I assumed I deserved exemption from troubles because I trusted God.

Scripture tells us something different, though. Those who put their trust in Jesus still experience pain. Entering a relationship with God through His Son doesn’t promise a blissful life. After all, Jesus Himself experienced rejection and injustice. And that means He understands our struggles. He also says we can expect to face trouble. But, when we have Him in our lives, we can be encouraged knowing He loves us, and He has overcome the brokenness of this world. • Allison Wilson Lee

• When we’re afraid we’re unsafe, anger is a natural response, because as humans we are worthy of safety. Can you think of a time you experienced trouble that wasn’t your fault, that may even have been caused by someone else? Since the world has been broken by sin, we all experience injustice. And, in fact, we all cause injustice. That’s why Jesus came to save us. He took all the sin and injustice of the world on Himself and defeated it through His own death on the cross. Then He resurrected from the dead, defeating death itself. One day He will return to resurrect His people and flood the world with His perfect justice. In the meantime, He invites us to participate in His kingdom of love and justice, resisting the temptation to take revenge and instead relying on His Holy Spirit within us to provide guidance and wisdom in how to love others, even our enemies. When we face injustice and trouble, how can we respond according to these truths?

“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (NIV)