Prayer of the Broken Vessel

Oh God,

I thought I knew brokenness.

I thought that there was nothing left to surrender,

nothing more between You and me.

You have taken every avenue of security from me,

bringing me gently but persistently

to the place of the Cross time and time over.

All my plans, all my hopes,

all my basic expectations of life lie there,

among the ruins of Golgotha.

Dead, buried, before Your greater wisdom,

painful but willing sacrifices to your Sovereign love.

Oh God,

I considered that the cost

had been carefully weighted

and acknowledged between You and me.

After all,

I was not as one unaware or

ignorant of Your ways.

When was it I heard

the subtle whisperings of our enemy

that this agreement between You and I

had limitations?

For You never told me you would not dig deeper.

You never spoke the words that

Your fullness would come at an agreed price.

You spoke truth to me..….

That to walk Your path would cost me everything.

You said it would be lonely, for the path is narrow.

You said it would involve a yoke –

even though light, a yoke nonetheless.

You said if I would be faithful,

I would enter into Your joy.

You promised me trial, tribulation,

betrayal and persecution,

and I embraced even those.

You told me to follow You

would mean a cross for my shoulders,

but You also told me

You would never leave me or forsake me,

and that nothing would separate us.

Oh God,

You’ve been faithful to Your Word always,

working the Cross in my life

at the same time as You’ve worked

Your love and will in my life.

Not always with my understanding or compliance,

but always providing sufficient grace for the hour.

Always waiting for my final consent

and surrender to the life of brokenness,

as you tenderly but consistently

conform me to the image of the Son.

Now, as His very nature begins to unfold in me,

at last the revelation comes.

There is no final place of brokenness.

There are only levels of brokenness.

The greatest enemy

to Your work of brokenness in my life is me.

It’s I who stands in opposition

to your tools of circumcision.

It’s my own flesh that rises up

against the increasing revelation of who You are,

and who You would have me be in You.

So here I am before You again, my God…..

Broken, but sensing Your desire

to break me yet more deeply.

Helpless, yet aware of my need

to become still more helpless before you.

Vulnerable, yet again laying bare my heart

to your firm, sure Hand.

Surrendering all, yet not knowing

if all is yet surrendered.

If You choose to pour me out like water, Lord,

then fill me again

with your ever increasing fullness.

Brokenness means suffering.

Brokenness is the Cross.

But the sweetness of your fellowship there

can be found in no other place I know.

Oh God, I yield. Do what you will, Lord.. .…

I must have more of You.

Lord, come, I thirst……

“I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint;

my heart is like wax; it has melted within me,

my strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue clings

to my jaws, you have brought me to the dust of death.”

Ps. 22:14,15

“And He, bearing His Cross,

went out to a place called the place of a skull,

which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha,

where they crucified Him……”

John 19:17,18

Ó Copyright Cheryl McGrath and Great South Land Ministries, 2001. May be copied and distributed freely without change or omission and with copyright notice intact.


6 thoughts on “Prayer of the Broken Vessel

  1. When I could not pray, when I could not write my feelings of terror down, when I could find the tears to even cry out, “God this is your bride here in my terminal illness,” I read my e-mail to find that God wrote, and Cheryl was the chancellor of the King. Now, I can cry an ocean of tears, and I can pray, and tell the King, the Bridegroom. OK. Thank you, break me more while I still live here.

    Cheryl, you are truly a vessel of Holy Spirit. Thank you for your faithfulness and obedience to God.


    • Grace, I am both honoured and humbled that God used this piece of my heart, written down, to draw you deeper into His arms of grace in your hour of very deep need. I do not know all the answers to suffering, I only know He is faithful beyond anything we can measure and able to meet us in deeper places than we can ever imagine. Thankyou for your message of brokenness and hope. I pray it will give hope to others who pass this way.


      • Yes my sister, honor is humbling when we belong to the King. Since my comment,to your post, Thank you one more time, and then some. I am sharing your post with as many as cross my path.

        I have come to a clearer understanding of suffering. I had written on my own website about oneness and suffering some months ago. The Bridegroom reminded me of what I wrote and I read it, this time around not as the author of it, but as a reader. Of course! I said to myself. why would I not suffer? I am one with the One Who suffered most to ransom me!

        “The Bridegroom beckons His Bride to come closer to Him in every way: In sickness, in health, in darkness, in light, in lack or riches, in joy and sorrow, and in what the Bridegroom endures. Suffering. There is a side to suffering that is dark, yes, but there is a side to it that is eternally bright, why? Because in suffering the Bridegroom brought His Bride to Himself, and not just in ordinary suffering, but brutal, unspeakable pain. He endured it all for His Beloved. Thus, the brightness of suffering that comes from the Bridegroom, shines over His Bride, and she too, is called to share in His sufferings. Not as He did for the purpose of our ransom, but as His spouse who carries the pain of her Beloved Who still suffers for the fallen world, for the evil that is continuously rising till it reaches its max, and for those who are still lost. The Bride will not let Him suffer alone, because what He feels she feels. F.J. Huegel (1889-1971), in his book Bone of His Bone, opens our eyes to deep truth about oneness with the Bridegroom: “He can do nothing without us! We are His body. Christ has bound us to Himself with ties so strong we are all members of His Body…Christ has bound Himself so eternally to us that when He moves, we move. [O’] The glory of this mystic oneness with Christ!”

        Romance with God it is beautiful, inviting, and utterly dangerous. Yet, the danger of being His, is the only safety the Bride is to seek, if she loves Him, even unto death. He has loved Her from eterninty with an everlasting Love, then He came down to earth to show her that He first loved Her unto Death. This is the Great Romance of the Gospel.!about2/csf3


      • Thankyou Grace for expounding on your previous comment. I agree that relationship with God is beautiful, inviting and dangerous, yet at the same time He is the safest place we can hide! I am not sure what F. J. Huegel, who you quoted, was trying to say about Christ’s suffering when he said “her Beloved who still suffers”, but I believe the Bible is clear that Christ suffered once for all and does not continue to suffer. The Bride enters into the sufferings of the Bridegroom in identification with Him, but Jesus does not continue to suffer in the flesh and has overcome the world. He calls us to be overcomers with Him and that involves trials, tribulations and suffering in this life in many and varied ways. Yes, it is a great mystery this Oneness with the Bridegroom that we are called to participate in. Thankyou for sharing your heart!


  2. Pingback: How Can I Keep from Singing: Never Once « lbtk

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