Have You Been Broken?

“Broken” and this quote is on the first page…

A disciple asks the rabbi, “Why does Torah tell us to ‘place these words upon your hearts’? Why does it not tell us to place these holy words in our hearts?” The rabbi answers, “It is because as we are, our hearts are closed, and we cannot place the holy words in our hearts. So we place them on top of our hearts. And there they stay until, one day, the heart breaks and the words fall in.” —From “The Politics of the Brokenhearted,” by Parker J. Palmer
This speaks to the painful “beautiful undoing” that each of us must experience in order to truly know ourselves and our desperate need for God’s amazing grace. In recovery circles, we refer to this as our “bottom”…that point in time where we realize that not only have we put it in the ditch, but that we are powerless to get our lives out of the ditch. As God lovingly exposes our desperate need for Him, our self-sufficiency is stripped away and we begin to understand in new terms what a daily life of faith looks like. Unfortunately, so much energy is spent among Christians trying to hide weakness and brokenness, rather than embracing it and connecting with others at that level. At the heart of our hiding is a deep unbelief of the Gospel. We say we believe that God loves us as we are, but live as if God is disappointed and even angry when we fall short. This line of thinking causes us to live as orphans separated from God trying to manage sin on our own and keeps us on a perpetual cycle of shame. We then put on our masks and “Sunday Best” and parade into church comparing what we know to be true about ourselves with what we think is true about those around us. What we fail to realize is that comparing our true selves with someone else’s pristine mask is always an unfair comparison. We are left believing that we must be the only one struggling, which causes us to retreat even further into the shadows. Are you living today as a beloved child or as an abandoned orphan? In what ways are you hiding in the shadows instead of living boldly in the Light?]]>

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  3. Avatar
    Serena Woods

    I saw a photograph a while back of a little boy sitting up against a wall with his knees pulled to his chest and his chin in his hands. Above him, the words 'I was here' were written and right below that in different hand writing were the words 'I was, too.'
    The problem is, those who visit that place feel like they're the only one there. And they're NOT. I hope more people find what you're doing…what I'm doing…and learn to embrace the place that gives birth to grace. (didn't mean to ryhme, but it has a nice ring to it, eh?)
    s

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    Makeda

    "At the heart of our hiding is a deep unbelief of the Gospel. We say we believe that God loves us as we are, but live as if God is disappointed and even angry when we fall short."
    I believe there is some truth to that statement as it relates to how we connect with God but when I think of the reasons I hide it has more to do with the judgment I believe I will receive from others and less to do with the judgment I believe I will receive from God. Don't get me wrong, for a long time I believed that God was out to get me and so I lived in an almost constant fear that He was disappointed in me and was waiting to judge me. Over SEVERAL years I have slowly had that image of God changed but the problem is His people all too often do not reflect His love for others. So for me the hiding comes out of the conviction that others will judge me because where I am doesn't measure up to where they think I am. This was a great post. Thank you so much for sharing.

    1. Avatar
      Traylor Lovvorn

      What you describe…judgement from other believers…is one of the reasons we are launching <a href="http://www.rethinknaked.com” target=”_blank”>www.rethinknaked.com. We want to create a movement of authenticity where all believers are resting in the Gospel and connecting at weakness rather than trying to impress with strengths. Thank you so much for your comment!