Have you ever been for a walk on the beach and noticed the thousands of broken shells beneath your tender feet?  I realize that some beaches acquire more of those than others, but have you ever wondered what that broken shell looked like whole?  Before it got smashed by life in the ocean, dashed against rocks, coral, and broken open by predators?  Some of the pieces I picked up that day on the beach were so beautifully colored that it made me wonder.  Even the bland colors have a back story.

Our lives are like those shells, broken in a million pieces only to be restored to wholeness.  The final product of the JustBe Curriculum is written out of the brokenness of my own life.  It’s never easy to be vulnerable.  The ocean of life can be a fierce place.  Jesus said there would be trouble in this world, and that He would be the mender of this beautiful mess.  If you’ve never trusted Him to actually put your heart back together, it’s worth the risk.  But you have to find that out for yourself.

One day Jesus was walking along the beach of in my heart and He picked up a fragment to a shell and He kept walking.  I came up from behind to see and inquire as to what He had there in the palm of His hand.  He opened His hand and showed me this iridescent pink looking shell no bigger than a thumbnail.  He said, “It’s you – it is a fragment of who you are.  I’m going to find the rest and put your heart back together.”  Tears streamed down my face as I watched Him tuck it into His shirt pocket to carry me close to His heart.

“He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.” Isaiah 40:11

And so the journey together had begun.  He knew exactly where all of the other pieces of me could be found.  He waited for hours, days, and even years for some of those pieces to be spit out from the blue abyss.  Some washed ashore by gentle waves, others came in crashing.  Sometimes Jesus sat drenched to the bone through the fiercest of storms simply waiting for another piece to wash ashore, for Him to reclaim.  Other times He dove in on a quest, knowing exactly where to look for me when I didn’t know where to find myself.  He is the master diver after all, able to hold His breath longer than anyone.  It’s deep in the darkest, most deafeningly quiet places of the ocean floor that sometimes parts of us are stuck, waiting to be discovered.  Not even the fury of violent storms can get to those places because they are buried so deep.  After all, Jesus loves a good treasure hunt to go find the one.

“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it?” Luke 15:4

Sun up and sun down, there He waits for all of me to come into all of Him; for all of your heart to come home to His.  It’s a beautiful mosaic.  A process – no silver bullets, no short cuts, no formulas.  Relationship – true relationship – does not succumb to of any of these things.

Jesus – He is the master shell collector and heart repairer, and so He walks and sits along the beach of your heart waiting to JustBe with you.

“His name is Jesus, and He knows every piece of the puzzle of your heart and mine.  He even knows how to put it back together, one piece at a time, with gentleness and grace so that we live fully alive, abundant, and free.” JustBe: An Invitation Into Intimacy Chapter 1, page 15.