The Calling of Brokenness

So I have a question for you: what do you call yourself? Out loud, in your head. In public, to yourself in the bathroom mirror? I am getting to be meticulous about the words I choose and this is just the beginning.

No matter how it is done, how we identify ourselves is a crucial element of the life of every believer. It is directly related to:

  1. How victorious we are over our circumstances
  2. How effective we are in carrying out Jesus’ mandate, or in everyday terms: putting the Holy Spirit on display, increasing his impact here on earth.

I’ve been thinking and studying for several months now, on this issue, and think that God has some things for me to ingest and also share on the calling of ourselves, “broken”.

Someone close to me was recently telling me about a man in his 50’s who goes to a guy’s weekly Bible study and seemed to interject a phrase about how he’s broken, nearly every week. He carried himself likewise. Later, he confessed to the group that even though it was over, he had been engaging in an affair for over several years, even while attending this men’s group. No wonder he saw himself as broken. He was living his life as a branch that was broken off from the True Vine. Broken away from hearing truth. In a cloud of deception and constant self-centered lies. But even if his sin changed his self-perception, we must take it further and ask, does that change what he is inside?

broken2

A few days later, I got caught up listening to a classic Jack Johnson song from the classic soundtrack of Curious George, and found myself singing over and over – these lines:

Without you I was broken, but I’d rather be broke down with you by my side

I got t’thinkin’…some Christians would be inclined to turn it into a worship song: “Without you I was broken, Lord, but I’d rather be broke down with you by my side…” But really – why is “broken” or “broke down” options in the drop-down menu of self-perception, as followers of Christ?! I’m talkin to those who don’t simply call themselves Christian (I don’t even do that anymore with how that can be misinterpreted these days). But I’m addressing people dedicated to following Jesus, created by him in the image of him (which includes the entire trinity): I believe – hang with me here – we gave up the right to call ourselves that ugly word, broken. I’ll explain:

It’s the 1st identifier I’m focusing on in this series. It will be about the importance of how we see ourselves, consequently speak of ourselves, and eventually, treat ourselves, or behave in general. This in turn, greatly impacts the way others treat us.

We were broken without him. Absolutely. Not up for debate. But here is where I see confusion and mis-identification enter the picture. What I am learning is, once we became children of God by becoming born again (see: Story of Nick) it ALL changed. Our state of being – became brand new. Our hearts became whole. Now it’s time, my friends, for our minds to catch up and begin relaying messages to the heart that mat not seem true, but faith says they are. Faith tells you to tell a new story.

There is no need to be or feel “broke down”. Not now.

broken1.jpg

And that’s not just being in denial, being haughty or lacking in humility. It is being truthful. See, as an ambassador of Christ, which is one thing I call myself, because the Word does, I have a document to follow – my “government”‘s decrees. This lot of decrees is the only thing I can deem a fully reliable source of truth. And here is what that constitution, the Word of God, says:

And you are in Him, made full and having come to fullness of life [in Christ you too are filled with the Godhead–Father, Son and Holy Spirit–and reach full spiritual stature].

…he holds the whole body together with its joints and ligaments, and it grows as God nourishes it.

He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross.

In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities.

Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration)…so that the man of God {we} may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work.

(‭Colossians‬ ‭2‬:‭10‬ AMPC)

(‭Colossians‬ ‭2‬:‭19‬ NLT)

(‭Colossians‬ ‭2‬:‭14-15‬ NLT)

(2 Timothy‬ ‭3‬:‭16-17‬ AMPC)

There is no evidence in the Word, of Christ following believers calling themselves or even seeing themselves as broken. Here is what I found the Word of The Living God DOES say about brokenness:

* If a person does not dwell in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken-off] branch, and withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned. {speaking of those who are not following Christ – not dwelling in him}.

* Even so consider yourselves also dead to sin and your relation to it broken, but alive to God [living in unbroken fellowship with Him] in Christ Jesus. {we are to consider ourselves dead to sin and our relation to any sin: BROKEN…& alive to God living in UNBROKEN fellowship. This is in contrast to the idea many Christians accept as identifying themselves as broken. What is to be considered broken now? Not us, but our relationship to sin}.

And the last one I came across was actually not about us being broken or whole, empty or complete, but Jesus himself. It may be my favorite of these three, because it tells us that even Jesus was not broken:

* “For these things were done that the Scripture should be fulfilled, “Not one of His bones shall be broken.” He was not broken. I am in him. Therefore, I am not.

(‭John‬ ‭15‬:‭6‬ AMPC)

(‭Romans‬ ‭6‬:‭11‬ AMPC)

(John 19:33-36)

He was hurt, but chose not to be offended. He was betrayed, but chose not be a victim. His heart broke for the lost all around him, but he chose not to let his compassion toward distort into a form of brokenness within his own spirit.

 

Don’t misunderstand me. We can be affected by the sins of other people, or our own. And we often are. Affected greatly. But as a reaction to those instances, we are to look to Christ and respond in a way he did. That takes some getting to know him. Are you willing to take that time and gain freedom as a result? Based upon his actions, how could you, in all sincerity and seriousness, see him call himself broken? It would never be.

Since we have the same Spirit in us that filled him, and God pours out his Spirit without measure (John 3:34), then we get to apply the same names to ourselves as Jesus would. Regardless of feelings.

Ask yourself: In light of the new covenant and red letters in scripture, do I get to call myself names Christ himself would not call me? The calling of brokenness over myself has been revoked. Now my calling is Whole.

whole

 

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