From Fighting Brokenness To Accepting It
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From Fighting Brokenness To Accepting It

It's more OK than we may like to admit.

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From Fighting Brokenness To Accepting It
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We fight brokenness constantly. We’re constantly looking to keep it together, to make it through the tough stuff and to overcome. We never want our mascara to run down our cheeks with the tears, or our insecurities to overwhelm us. It’s a constant struggle, and often we’re fighting ourselves.

Sometime during my sophomore year, in the midst of what seemed like an endless struggle, I looked around and wondered who I was fighting. I’ve often thought about this. The Bible speaks frequently about suffering and persecution. But the Church in the New Testament and the Israelites in the Old Testament were facing very real enemies like the Philistines, Assyrians, Pharisees, and the Roman Empire. Their persecution and suffering were tangible.

When I read verses like 1 Peter 4:16 or James 1:2 I always wonder “Is this really speaking to me? If I don’t have enemies or people persecuting me for my faith, is my suffering real?”

We don’t face scores of persecution from other people for our faith. Yes, there is prejudice and ostracization and sometimes physical or emotional abuse. That persecution is real. But I think the majority of the persecution we face today comes from a different and maybe unexpected source: ourselves.

My sophomore year, when looking at the things I was struggling with, I quickly realized that I was fighting myself. I was my own worst enemy. Looking at my life now I can sadly say it’s still much the same. I feel like I’m fighting myself and losing. I degrade myself, beat myself, and refuse to give myself grace or forgiveness. My weaknesses, temptations and shortcomings are reprimanded and promptly shoved into hiding, until they come back again, and I renew my frustration at them, which turns into anger at myself. I get frustrated at the things I know I shouldn’t do, but still do.

Some days it feels like all of me is broken. I wake up late. Fight with a friend. Fall asleep in class. Suck at frisbee. Can’t have a decent quiet time. Fall off my bike. Lie. Cry in the bathroom.

The part of me that won’t let me skip class or back out on a commitment, also won’t allow myself to be weak or broken. It’s usually unthinkable to me that I would allow my own weakness to affect my life or the things that I do. But that mindset doesn’t get rid of the brokenness. It doesn’t even stifle it -- it only exacerbates it.

Thomas Moore, a Christian author and psychotherapist said, “Our depressions, jealousies, narcissism, and failures are not at odds with the spiritual life. Indeed, they are essential to it.”

Thankfully the power of grace is so great, that it not only overcomes the power of sin, it uses the power of sin against itself, so the greater the power of sin, the greater the power of grace. Our sin doesn’t leave us broken and shamed, but rather triumphant and honored. Our great capacity for evil, by grace is turned into a greater capacity for good, and that’s the beauty of the active work of Christ’s crucifixion. Sin turned to glory.

Whoa. A lot of Bible-y gospel stuff, huh? It’s only because the gospel is the only place that says brokenness is OK, and not just OK, but normal, essential and good. Nowhere and no one else allows you to embrace your demons and darkness and call it good. Nothing else allows you to truly love yourself, because nothing else allows you to love the brokenness as it is. And the only reason we can love it is because it is redeemed and loved by our Savior.

Christ’s love takes the enemy we’ve made of ourselves, and turns it into a friend.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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