Finding Purpose in Broken Pieces

brokenpiecesFor God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. —John 3:16 KJV

Herb Kliewer was forty-nine years old when he broke his neck in a fall and was left totally paralyzed. He ended up in a nursing home where all he could do was lie in bed staring blankly into the air. There is nothing left of me but worthless broken pieces, he thought. What good am I now?

Suddenly, “It was almost like Jesus was right there by my bed,” Herb said. “I felt him telling me, ‘Broken pieces are all I need.’”

That moment changed Herb’s life. Yes, his body was still broken, but he knew without a doubt that God was right there with him. Hopelessness faded in the bright light of that assurance. Soon God allowed the feeling to come back to Herb’s hands and then to his arms. No longer was his entire body paralyzed.

Herb learned to hold a pen again and began copying Bible verses that were especially meaningful to him. His favorite is John 3:16, which reminds us that God loved us so much that he gave his Son to die for us. For Herb, in the nursing home. For you and me exactly where we are and who we happen to be.

Herb has taught me a wonderful lesson in perseverance. He’s shown me that one’s purpose doesn’t depend on understanding God’s plan or why God allows awful—or even good—things to happen.

God’s purpose is more often focused on the moment, on how we respond to a tough circumstance right now, this instant, every day.

From Daily Gifts of Grace. Copyright © 2012 (Thomas Nelson, Inc.) Used by permission. 


  1. Great reminder not to be so negative about what we have or do not have. God can us me and you for good. God is always with us.

  2. 5 months ago
    susan says

    After 24yrs of marriage I found out my husband had been havin affair with a woman 17 yrs younger than me and with 3 illegitimate kids!!! Hed ben transferred four hours north of here for work and itd been going on for many months and was still hoin on when I found out. Its ben seven months. Wev come such a long way but I keep having setbacks. He got saved and loved th lord souch and is th perfect christian husband id prayed for all these years. Hes very sorry. But I cant understand why he turned on me and our two kids!!! Hes stil outta town an thats ectremely hard on me seein him go bak up ther each week. Todays ben a very bad day emotionally for me. Im alone all th time. I wonder sumtimes if I can go on but dont want to without my husband. I love him and alwsys did an when I found th txts n his phone I never gave it a second thouhht not to forgive him for what he did. Pleade pray for us. My mind is a battlefield. Ive had every emotion I can think of an now am having bad dreams about him and women. Pleade pray for me!!! Thankyou.

    • 5 months ago
      susan says

      I wanna add that he immediately broke it off with her.and has had no contact since. He is trying sooooo hard to make it all work for us. We went broke cuz he wad spending all r money on them and wer gettin ahead now a lil bit but its all been so terribly hurtful. I kno I hsd a breakdown. Its ben th worst thing ive ever gone thru n my life.

  3. 5 months ago
    Shawn Seeds says

    Broken pieces are all God needs. My head understands but my heart struggles. Herb received an answer, he got a miracle. What happens when you don’t? My heart has been broken, now it is shattered pieces. Battle after battle since I was a child. I have been told I am worth nothing, I am ugly, unloved and unwanted. My parents disowned me and my children because I am such a disappointment. But I grew up, became an adult, raised my boys with love and God ‘s teachings. But my adult children walk their own path, not God ‘s. Every time I turn around it is another crisis, another bad situation, another hurtful phone call. When does God hear my cry? Is 47 years not enough? I know he has been present and I have seen him work miracles in my life, but I am weak, I am tired. I have lost the strength to fight the good fight.

  4. 5 months ago
    Janet says

    In Jesus name may the attacks of the enemy leave your life; may the Lord rebuke them all…be strong in your faith again…God will heal you if you call on Him with all your heart…God Bless you Jo !

  5. 5 months ago
    becky bodnarchuk says

    Bless you in Jesus Name Jo…I have endured years of it too, maybe that’s why your post helped me…I heard our gracious Lord, our Beloved say “You are not alone. I really am the G-d who sees you, and I care for you even when others hurt you.”
    Please Jo, seek out wise councel, even Focus on the Family has a phone line you can call and talk with someone then they can help you find help in your area. Depression and despair are difficult battlegrounds and you need not keep a stiff upper lip or wear a mask.

  6. 5 months ago
    doris says

    Dearest Jo, I hear your pain and am praying for you, that just as the man in the story, paralyzed and feeling broken, you would cry out to God, as only He can put your life together again.
    “Dear heavenly Father, please help Jo to move beyond the pain that she endured for years, let her eyes be on you alone, and not her circumstances. Lord surround her with your great Love. Your word says: Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. I pray for healing of her broken heart. In Jesus Name

  7. I found this message to be quite inspirational. I met a man years ago that could not read, God gave hum a beautiful voice. When he sang his whole body became so filled with the glory of God. You may say well this isn’t so bad, but think about your everyday life not being able to read? Did he learn to read, I don’t know but it never stopped him from praising God . Karen Hogan

  8. 5 months ago
    Laura says

    I am so sorry for your emotional abuse. I too and so many of my loved ones endure, daily, emotional
    abuse. I look at this as just- think about the abuse our Lord endured and conquered! it is like no other
    that I could ever imagine. The pains in our lives are signs that we need our Lord more than ever. Please
    pray for yourself and you could be amazed at your results! Get closer to the Lord, for he can deliver you
    from your battles, I say this because I am in the process of getting to know Him and His word, which has changed my life drastically, I regularly felt depressed, but the more I know Christ, the better and better I feel, it is almost like a miracle!! To sum it up, I feel the more you know, the wiser you become and you can handle anything in life that comes your way. May God bless you.

  9. 5 months ago
    Lorel Molina says

    Gods timing is always perfect. Came across websitle as I’m waiting in Dr. office. My husband’s left hand is paralyzed from stroke and his right hand is showing signs of circulatory disease. I know God is in control!

    • 5 months ago
      Lorel Molina says

      Lifting you up in prayer Jo. God has a great purpose & plan for your life! Jeremiah

  10. 5 months ago
    jo says

    I have endured years of emotional abuse.. which has caused my faith to falter.. depression and despair are my constant battles… help me

    • 5 months ago
      Joanne Polacek says

      Jo, I’m a Jo, too, and I can say that if GOD isn’t bigger than our worst moments, He isn’t enough for us. And we know from Scripture He is the Great I Am. The idea of persevering among seemingly impossible circumstances means we MUST lean on Him, as He is the only one who knows fully what we need. He does, though, love to hear us put it into words. When we admit we can’t make it alone, He zooms into our thoughts, our emotions, and even our actions, pointing them all to what He would want for us. He is real, He cares, and He hears your call for help. Enduring someone else’s sinful behavior means you must save out your thoughts, emotions, and actions for GOD only. He is perfect, and He can perfect you while He is improving your situation. Don’t give abuse any time; spend your time secretly giving it all up to the One who really cares for you.

      • 5 months ago
        Kat says

        Thank you for sharing.
        I needed your honest words this morning.
        Have a blessed day.

    • 5 months ago
      CJ says

      Heavenly Father, I lift jo up to you. I am only human and very far from her, but You are always near. Show her how to turn to You in her hour of need. Help her to find a church near her, because I know that I wouldn’t have made it without corporate worship in Your church and the fellowship I found with my brothers and sisters in Christ that I found at my Church. I ask all this in Jesus’ name. Amen!

    • 5 months ago
      Doris says

      Jo, I’m so sorry to hear you are feeling depressed and despair. You don’t deserve to be mistreated by anyone. Rely not on relationships of this world. Humans will falter and fail you, but God, your Father, will never leave you. I know it’s hard when the world is so cold and people so hurtful. I’m so sorry you’ve been mistreated. I’ve been there too. There was a point in my life when I was so down the only comfort I found was in church. I went as much as I could, even to multiple churches on the same weekend just to feel closer to God. I prayed constantly for His grace and mercy, and then one day, He answered my prayers. He hears you too, if you only call out to Him. God will never fail you the way people do. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of god, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
      You are loved, Jo! May God bless you and bring your comfort today.

    • 5 months ago
      Carol Nicholls says

      My dear friend, God does not ask us to endure mis-treatment by others. Please, find a Christian counselor for guidance. Jesus loves you. He will guide you out of abuse and unto a life of peace.

    • 5 months ago
      Martha says

      Jo, everyday sit down with your bible, ask God to speak to you, open your bible and read, He will speak to you through a verse, you respond to His word. Do this one day at a time. Your life WILL change.

    • 5 months ago
      Malissa says

      I know how you feel. I know the way the blanket of depression feels. Emotional abuse without reaching out for help can leave you feeling helpless, worthless and alone. Jesus tells us that He will give us rest. Jesus offers help by His Spirit, His word and through the support of His people. Open your heart to Him first, surrender to Him, give Him access to your pain. Also, find support through Christian support groups, Many others are going through this. You are not alone. What helps me the most though and this may sound weird but praise and worship songs and scripture take my mind off on my pain and circumstance and puts my soul with Him-right where it belongs, in the comfort of the Good Shepherd. The radio station KLOVE is always on where ever I go. Hope this helps…praying for you Jo!

    • Jo, I am so sorry that you have to feel the pain that you feel, either on a daily basis or weekly. Please know this, God does not give you what he knows you can handle. I have had many different battles in my life, but I know that God has given me those Battles to help other people who are going thru that same battle I overcame. You can and WILL be a LEADER, and a HELPER, to those who are going thru the same thing. If everyone was a Christian and didn’t have the Devil to interfear with their life on a daily basis, then we wouldn’t have people we do with AMAZING TESTIMONIES!! Hang in there my Sister!! You will OVERCOME this battle you are facing right now. Say to yourself, “its not my will, it is your will God”. “That I know, that you would not give me anything, you know that I can not handle.” “That I will be a great Leader in my own way for others and have the most AMAZING TESTIMONIE!