About the Book
Blessed, Broken, and Scared. What does that mean? We know that Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it, and shared it with His friends saying, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” The Last Supper challenges us to live in such a way that we actually become the sacred food of Jesus Christ for others as we share our lives with them. And that can be scary!
Blessed, Broken, and Scared calls the reader to a conversion from living a scared life to living a shared life. It is in sharing our life with others that we find the healing and peace we truly seek. All people are wounded by the world and have areas of hidden brokenness in their life. This book offers hope, healing, and change as it explores the profound implications of God’s mercy, forgiveness, and love.
Brian has been sharing his Blessed, Broken, and Scared retreats around the country for years. Now the message has been captured in this book. Here is what some past retreatants have had to say:
“Brian opens himself to all and helped us see that our brokenness isn’t a deterrent to God’s love and healing. Our retreat was truly a special day.”
“Should be required for today’s Christians and Catholics.”
“One of the best day retreats that I have attended in nearly 40 years! So much to reflect on and put into action.”
“I have been to many seminars, webinars, retreats and have been blessed to have read many great books, but I have to say…this retreat impacted my life as to learning more about God’s will in my life than any other book, resource, event ever has! Thanks be to God!”
About the Author
Brian is a Christian author and speaker. Brian, a lifelong Catholic, felt his life was forever changed when God spoke to his heart while attending an eight day silent Christian retreat in November of 2011. Soon after that retreat Brian founded 4th Day Letters and Broken Door Ministries. With the God inspired message of mercy and unconditional love that was placed on his heart during that retreat, Brian has been impacting others all over the country and around the world with his weekly letters, his talks, and his all day Christian retreats. Brian’s life was again impacted in a very dramatic way in June of 2014 when he temporarily lost his eyesight and was diagnosed with a very rare incurable neurological illness, MOG Anitbody Disease. This health challenge has only served to draw Brian closer to God and bolster the importance of this timely yet ageless message.
What People Are Saying
“Brian addresses some very important issues in a conversational style that invites you into his book. Let this book, in a “sea of purple,” be a place for us to share and be blessed. This book will truly encourage us to be Eucharist for one another.”
Fr. Martin Schratz OFM Cap.
An Intro to Blessed,
Broken & Scared
It was the week before Thanksgiving in November of 2011. A dimly lit spotlight illuminated the Tabernacle as I knelt before it to pray at 3 am. This was the third day of an eight-day silent Christian retreat. Little did I know that what was about to transpire over the next fifteen minutes would not only change my life but also touch and change the lives of thousands of others around the world.
In the stillness of the night, on the second-floor chapel of the Magnificat House nestled on the shores of Tampa Bay, with only the hushed sound of waves lapping the shoreline. God spoke plainly to my heart. “Brian, if you want to heal, you have to tell someone you are broken.” These words changed my life forever! In this book, I will attempt to explain why.
Allow me to ask you some very personal questions. Do you have any area of brokenness in your life that is known only to you? Do you harbor some well-guarded secrets? What impact would it have on you if you shared your brokenness with others? How might it impact them? How could sharing your brokenness change the world for Christ? It can! I will endeavor to explain how God’s message to me can change your life, too. I am convinced that the message God placed on my heart that day is also the message that He wants to place in yours as well. I hope that it will change your life too.
Blessed, Broken, and Scared might seem like an odd title. I hope as you read through this book, you will discover that this title is not as odd as it first appears. My aim is to use words to draw a picture for you, much like the famous mural of “The Last Supper” by Leonardo da Vinci located inside Milan’s Santa Maria delle Grazie monastery. During the meal, as related in the gospel stories, Jesus performed four simple yet very profound actions. And what is contained in those actions and our own reaction to them is what this book is about. We will explore the implications of how the Last Supper challenges us to live our lives in such a way that we actually become the sacred food of Jesus Christ for the lost and broken people of the world—for those people who are starving to receive Him.
Writing this book took me almost five years. Learning what to write took me a lifetime. And this story you are about to read recaps my journey of faith. My sincere hope is that you will discover a few things that can help you see and understand God’s calling in your life more clearly. I will strive to make the point that true Christian community is an essential part of God’s plan for each of us. But the most important point I hope to make is this: as long as we remain broken and scared people, we will fall short of becoming the Eucharistic people God intended us to be.
If we are to become a eucharistic people, then we need to understand the meaning of Eucharist. The word Eucharist comes to us from the Greek word eucharistia, which means thanksgiving. Throughout this book, we will explore what it means to “be” a people of thanksgiving.
To be clear, I am writing this book for all Christians. While the word Eucharist is primarily used by Catholics, don’t let that concern you at this point. The eucharistic meal—this meal of thanksgiving—is also commonly referred to as “The Lord’s Supper” or simply “Communion.” I will be using all these terms interchangeably throughout this book.
I realize that all Christians do not share a common view concerning this meal of thanksgiving. While many deeply faithful Christians believe in the real presence of Christ’s body and blood in the form of consecrated bread and wine, other Christians who are as deeply faithful see this meal as a symbolic or spiritual presence of our Lord.
With respect to each viewpoint, however, the underlying premise remains constant. In much the same way as Catholics believe that the bread and wine are transformed into our Lord’s body and blood, all Christians, regardless of our religious affiliations, are called to their own transformation. And through this conversion, we are then challenged to be Christ to others.
The Jews ate the gift of heavenly manna to survive their journey in the desert. Ponder how much more life-giving it can be in our own wilderness journeys than to be nourished by the gift of our Lord through His people. We are called to be Christ to others so that as a eucharistic meal for them, they can be nourished by Him and come to believe in God’s Son, Jesus. And they, too, can have everlasting life. How privileged and grateful we are to share this meal of thanksgiving.
In Matthew 26:26, it states, “While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, ‘Take and eat; this is my body.’” Through this action, Jesus instituted the first eucharistic meal. The bread was taken, blessed, broken, and shared. This book and its message are built upon the importance of these four words.
I sincerely hope that as you make your way through the words I have written, you will learn that you, too, are taken by God, blessed by God, broken, and created by God to be shared. When we fall short of this, we cease to be the eucharistic people our God calls us to be.
Understanding and coming to grips with our own brokenness is a very important part of our Christian journey. If, however, we never progress beyond this self-awareness, our introspection is nothing short of a useless navel-gazing exercise. If we never progress beyond our own introspection, we will not become a eucharistic people. Instead, we will remain BLESSED, BROKEN, and SCARED. Blessed, broken, and scared is not Eucharist.
I chose to name this book Blessed, Broken, and Scared because, sadly, this is where many of us are stuck. If we are to become communion for others, then we must go through a conversion to become a Blessed, Broken, and SHARED people.
Together let’s embark on a journey to see how we can become the Eucharistic people God calls us to be.