Broken Ones

Posted: October 9, 2012 in Compassion
Tags: , , ,

There are moments when I ask God a hard question.  “Why do I fall in love with broken people?”  And I wonder what is it inside of me that draws me to the broken ones like a magnet.  I wrestle with deep emotions that stir within me when I look on the chaos of their lives and my heart weeps.  My heart hurts and my body eventually follows suit.

I go too far, you know.  I get too involved.  I let them in too close. My boundaries are not firm enough.  Some say the balance of work/family/ministry/self is out of whack.  And I ask, “How can that be truth?”

How can I hold back compassion that stirs in my bowels.  What do I do with the Image of God within me when God’s heart is breaking and I feel it in mine?  How do I stare into the empty eyes of sinned against people and choose to do nothing?  Where do I draw a line?

I heard a question at a retreat recently where Diane Le Clerc asked a hard question, “What does the cross have to offer the sinned against ones?”  Her voice rings in my mind and pulls at my spirit for an answer. 

When I sit and talk with the meth addict who cannot identify with anything less than chaos, how do I offer redemption? Her own mother was her dealer! How many layers does that add to her healing journey?  She cannot know security or value in herself because she was herself abandoned and treated as a commodity.

What about the young man with socially awkward disorders?  He cannot find a space where he is accepted let alone tolerated!  He seems to be tortured by his own head and can’t seem to get comfortable in his own skin.  Loneliness runs rampant in his world and yet his quirky behaviors alienate people.  He sits alone, seeking any connection he can find with human contact.  All too often that is found in all the wrong places and he finds himself in situations he cannot dig out of by himself.  Trouble hangs on him like a thrift store sweater, stretched out and worn by overuse.

Jesus loves you is such a platitude. There is no comfort in those words.  Words are simply noise.  What backs them up and gives the words truth?  How does the truth of Jesus reach beyond the noise of our words and give redemptive value to the broken places?

It is me who falls in love with the broken ones.  It is me God puts in these places of discomfort and awkward silence.  It is me.  And I‘m afraid I must be what the cross offers the sinned against ones.  I must be.  That image of God within me must be allowed to incarnate himself beyond my own self, my own comfort and my own convenience.  How do I put healthy boundary lines on that?  How do I balance the movement of the Creator of all that is and my puny self?  I can’t.  And I find I must simply yield.  It is me the cross wants to offer.  I have to yield to falling in love with broken people.  I have to yield to all the pain that comes with such love.  A love that suffers; A Jesus kind of love. The kind of love that falls in love with broken people.  Why do I fall in love with broken people?  Because Jesus fell in love with me.  Jesus was willing to yield to pain and suffering. Jesus was inconvenienced. Jesus yielded to my chaos when I was the sinned against one.

I can do no less.


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