It's No Longer OK to Be Broken?? Part 1

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Saturday, May 12, 2018 0 comments

by Nathan Buck

Recently, I battled a sinus infection that tried desperately to become bronchitis and pneumonia. From fever and congestion, to coughing, draining, more coughing and fatigue, the battle lasted over three weeks. During that time, my focus was on getting better. I knew I was sick, I took steps to fight the virus, and I focused on the hope that I would prevail and be well. This is common to all of us. Some of us fight with optimistic confidence in our journey to be well and some of us lament and talk about our sickness while seeking comfort, but we all take some form of action to be well again, because we know we are sick and something is broken.

This reality of our experience is being denied and aggressively silenced on many levels within our culture. The common cold is still accepted, but other more difficult and personal levels of brokenness and sickness are being "normalized" under radical ideologies. The intent is to make certain broken behaviors and dispositions "normal," and to vilify or outlaw the acknowledgement that there is something wrong. The goal? The same as it has always been: to "feel" ok. The difference? Facing brokenness to get well feels good because it is good to be restored and healed. Denying brokenness and promoting behaviors that mask it as "normal" may feel like relief temporarily, but the brokenness will continue to eat away at our body, mind, and soul - just like a virus - until we are so broken that wellness and healing seem impossible.

The knowledge that humans have brokenness in us, or as a part of our experience, has always been true. The need for healing, rescue, and redemption back to being healthy has also always been true. This is the basis of the four "I WILL..." promises God makes to Israel in Exodus 6:6-7. These promises are celebrated every year by the Jews at Passover as they remember their history and as they pray for these promises to apply to all people everywhere.

The context of these promises from God is important. We will look at them closer next week. For now, reflect on this question: "Where is the media and the world telling me things are normal or ok, and yet it still seems broken?"

Maybe you have a solid grasp on that. Maybe you don't see any place where this is happening. Let me prime the pump for some deeper reflection with additional questions:

* If the vast majority in any situation has a consistent set of norms based on biology, psychology, morality, etc., how can the exceptions to the major trends be called "normal"? And if we classify the exceptions as "normal" to that exceptional group, then what other factors are evaluated to determine if the exception has a good, unhelpful, or destructive divergence?

* If exceptions are "normal" and "good" just because they are divergent, then how do we evaluate climate change, the opioid crisis, sex trafficking, violence, isolation, gender and same sex attraction issues, biological expression vs. psychological perception, racial issues, etc.?

* If what is most prevalent is "evil" or oppressive, just because it is more present than the exceptions, then how do we determine when something has become too common and therefore can no longer be "good" because it excludes the exceptions?

Our ability to know right/wrong, good/evil, and truth/fiction, is all dependent upon being able to understand those things that are unchanging factual realities, and those things that are relative to perspective or experience. We then have to be able to take our changing perspectives or experiences and evaluate them in light of unchanging factual certainties. Where this gets messed up is when we change out facts for relative perspectives and skew what is good toward our experience. The tendency then is to ignore what is broken, or worse to make it normal and good. Our aversion to admitting our own faults and flaws comes from vanity, and vanity will do anything it can to look good in the mirror of public opinion.

If we cannot grasp our own brokenness, and we believe our faults and flaws are normal and to be celebrated, what harm could that do?

Continued next week...

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