Popular author and speaker, Joyce Meyer, shares her story. She was hard to get along with, harsh to people, controlling, manipulative, angry, critical, negative, overbearing, and judgmental.
She also didn’t know how to give or receive love.
Married and divorced! But the cycle didn’t stop with her 2nd husband, even though he was loving and kind. She abused him, too, because that’s all she knew how to do.
You see, she was broken on the inside. Terribly broken!
The brokenness came from the years of abuse she endured at the hands of her own father when she was growing up. Horrible abuse!
Here’s a startling truth: the church is full of broken people. Believers! People trying to fix their brokenness! And others not even aware of the damage they live with on a daily basis.
Today, I want to address this topic because I see Christians hurting each other, sparring back and forth, reacting in ungodly ways, and seeking wholeness in the wrong places.
I’m not talking about a broken “spirit.” David said that “the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart” (Psalm 51:17). The moment we recognize our humanness in light of Christ’s divinity is when our spirits break and we fall to our knees before our holy God. This is what awakens our spirits to see Him. This is the best thing that can happen to us.
I’m discussing the brokenness deep within caused by something that’s happened to us. Many things can cause us to break. Here are a few: shattered dreams, rejection, abuse, neglect, failure, hurt, pain, crumbled marriage or relationship, circumstances beyond our control, and our own bad choices.
Without healing, the break will just get bigger.
Can you relate to what I’m saying? Is this topic piercing your soul because you recognize your own brokenness and/or the condition of your heart? Something tells me that each one of us knows what brokenness feels like. I know I do.
The good news is that believers can be made whole again. Please read on to understand how to go from brokenness to wholeness.
1) Recognize YOUR brokenness! The 1st step in the 12-step Alcoholics Anonymous program is “recognizing you have a problem.” Without this first initial step, you will never seek healing. It seemed Jesus was always revealing to people the condition of their hearts.
Living in denial only worsens the brokenness.
If you recognize any of the responses to brokenness above and are not sure if you know what could be broken, then maybe you should make David’s prayer yours: “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24).
2) Know that YOU cannot fix the brokenness! You can put a Band-Aid on it (as many of us do) but that only covers the scars – it doesn’t heal them. We try to hide from it, live with it, pretend it isn’t there, and ignore it. None of these things can heal it. None of these things offers us wholeness.
Here’s the reality: we are human and incapable of healing the deep wounds inside. We read in John’s Gospel: “Apart from Christ, you can do nothing” (John 15:5). This brings us to our 3rd point…
Centuries before Jesus arrived on earth, the prophet Isaiah wrote about Him: “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me…He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted” (Isaiah 61:1). With that said, it’s accurate to say that Jesus came to fix broken people.
A cake can never reach its full potential without all the ingredients. The same is true of wholeness. And a major component to being made whole is yielding to God.
Brokenness stops when our spirit yields to God’s will.
There is one last component to complete wholeness – a vital component.
We have to be able to forgive those who’ve hurt us, abused us, rejected us. And we also need to be able to forgive ourselves. Forgiveness can set a prisoner free, cast out bitterness, restore relationships, bring back our joy, and set us on a pathway to abundant freedom.
Paul said, “Forgive as the Lord forgave you” (Colossians 3:13). Many people have walked the road of forgiveness. You can too!
Hear what I’m about to say! God can use us through our brokenness. But, we need to be healed first. Broken people rarely help other broken people. But as we let God pick up the broken pieces of our shattered lives, then we can have a huge impact on others and a we can make a great contribution for His kingdom.
Oswald Chambers said this:
“Leave the broken, irreversible past in God’s hands, and step out into the invincible future with Him.”
So, let’s do it. Let’s allow God to make us whole so we can move forward with His glorious plan for our lives.