When we are broken and are aware of it, it can come with shame and a distorted sense of identity. What shame does is it attaches itself to our identity- how we see ourselves and how we value ourselves. It pushes us to define ourselves by that shameful past or bad seasons in our lives. We become unable to separate who we are in Christ from what we have done. We marry our past behavior to our future and decide we deserve less because we are unworthy.
When we are filled with a negative sense of self, it becomes difficult to move forward or even desire to change. However, I believe God awakens us to our brokenness, not to shame us further but to allow us to acknowledge what is wrong and toxic in our lives. He allows us to decide what we want to do differently moving forward. To some extent, when we are awakened to our brokenness, we are given opportunities to rewrite the negative narratives over our lives. As with anything else in life, we are faced with decisions- the decision to choose who we want to be.
I see brokenness as a place where we are not fully aware of who we truly are, a place where we have accepted life’s challenges and toxicity as our own. This is a place where we have enabling behaviors to overcompensate for the things we lack in our lives. The root is usually an identity issue accompanied by behavior that reveals how we feel internally. Brokenness can feel like a prison, as though we are stuck in vicious cycles and where we have little control over the next move. We can even attempt to change, be inspired to do better but find ourselves right back where we started, if not in a worse situation. Brokenness can be caused by things that occurred without our consent but sometimes it can be the things we have allowed to enter our lives. The life view when we are broken is one-sided and often comes across as a broken record, all we see is the shame and imperfection that surrounds us. It usually comes with strange and toxic habits that have become part of our lives. We may “know” that we need to change but hardly ever implement it because our hearts are not yet set to taking effective steps to change.
This phase of life is not meant to be our home, it is simply a transitional place where most of us can acknowledge the damage of our past and sometimes current situations. Brokenness should not be a label to define the type of individuals we are. It is a result of painful decisions, but it can be a place of new beginnings where new life is presented to us. If we allow it, deciding to let go of your brokenness can bring healing. Often, God uses us in those areas of our biggest struggles. When we recover and are fully healed, we can help others who are currently struggling in that same area. You can become a beacon of hope and evidence that God truly works wonders.
My encouragement to you is to remember that although you may continue to struggle with some areas in your life, do not allow shame to define you. Acquiring self-worth does not come overnight but it must start somewhere. Whether you were responsible for your brokenness, or it came through someone else’s irresponsible behavior, there is a possibility for change. I know this personally. I spent many years shaming myself because my brokenness convinced me I was unworthy. This only changed when I decided to believe I am better than my past and my future can be different if I wanted it to be. We serve a gracious God who can turn any situation around, and He has done so in my life. There is hope for your future, whether you were molested, cheated on, raped, abused emotionally, or addicted to substances. Whatever level of brokenness you may be going through, there is another side for you, a side that brings comfort and a renewed identity in Christ. I hope you may accept this truth and allow Holy Spirit to lead you to greener pastures. God bless you.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope”- Jeremiah 29:11.