Broken Tiles, Restored Hearts

Embark on a tale of divine provision and creativity in a South Asian town, where discarded broken tiles, initially destined for the rubbish heap, become the vibrant mosaic of hope in a palliative care reflective garden

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us….

2 Corinthians 4:7-8 

“Just that deep aqua blue, please – that’s the colour I need,” I implored the Lord as I combed the streets of our South Asian town. A short while later, I was startled to notice that exact colour lining a shop driveway in broken tiles, and I hesitantly asked the shop owner whether he had plans for them. “No,” he looked at me amusedly, “I will be just getting rid of the tiles. Being broken – they will soon go to the rubbish heap.” 

This was just the piece of news I had hoped for, and I excitedly offered to take the lot for him. He shrugged casually – and I didn’t figure he would have much time for my explanation of mosaic art and broken pieces being the most useful.  

I gathered the vibrant blue pieces excitedly, already visualising the placing of this final colour into our palliative care reflective garden.  

“*Shanta!” I waved out to my fellow artist and the local hospital employee. In fact, this young woman had become my very good friend over the months of kneeling side by side on mosaics, in the midst of a newly landscaped garden. It was becoming a place of rest and beauty – “Look at my valuable find!”  

She smiled slowly as she recognised the missing pieces we had needed, there in a pile in my boxes. She had been coming to know the Lord and His personal ways herself, over recent conversations and so it didn’t surprise her as much as it might have previously, to see this direct and timely provision. She smiled at me and said, “God provides for His daughter’s needs.” She recognised His provision. We picked up a piece each and as we worked and chipped them into place, we resumed our conversation since our last mosaic session. What did we talk about? – All matters and concerns of daily life. 

I was moved to consider the privilege it was to journey with this woman, who had come to the grounds, and come into my life. She was someone who had been dealing with untold complexities and hardships, and yet she now has a Hope that her life counts, and that she too is treasured and placed just so – by God. She started coming with us to our fellowship. Now her husband and son come too, and they have just had a new baby! I pray that as her faith grows, she has a growing realization of her unique role as His new creation – so that others watching and listening might be restored and hope-filled in a God who delights to make broken things new.  

* We have used pseudonyms to protect the identity of our Partners and their work. 

Get monthly emails to inspire and help you learn how to practically live out Christ’s mission with us.