I have been pondering this thought for quite sometime. The idea of broken but functional keeps coming back to my mind over and over. The biggest reason is because of my own way of processing information. I usually have to live out in advance what others are most likely going through, it’s a part of my prophetic destiny. If you don’t understand how that works, or believe it is true that’s quite OK with me. For me it is the main way I gather new information to share. I usually look closely at what is going on in my own life, heart, and circumstances. I mean God is so profound He can get His message across in so many and countless ways. Just one huge way for me for the last 30 years or so has been my life tells the story!
The thought for this writing comes from my own experience of broken but functional. In the last eight months or so I noticed this very fact in my own life. It wasn’t until about two months ago that I finally got the message! Many are living in the world of broken but functional realm. Meaning most are functioning but not to full potential. Here are some of the things that happened to me in the last few months:
1. I had a crown fall out, and a tooth break, until I got them fixed I was still functional, but broken.
2. Out of the clear blue our bed frame hooks broke, broken but functional.
3. One day during this time I was cleaning my glasses and the whole side ear thing just broke, but I could still wear them with one earpiece, broken but functional.
4. About two months ago our car was crashed into, the young man didn’t have insurance as such and I wanted to work with him because that is what I would want to happen for me if I was in his shoes. Well he took the car and ordered the parts, and had it fixed. But for a bit our car was driveable and fixed but not painted; Broken but functional.
5. Even my Blackberry trackball was not working right, it would scroll but not click. I learned to navigate around etc in that state. Until I got a new phone, it was broken but functional.
The definition of functional according to the Webster’s Online Dictionary:
Broken – fragmented or reduced to fragments. Not functioning properly, out of working order, to be weakened in strength or spirit. I also means to be infringed upon or violated, disunited and of course broken.
I would say this describes a lot of people. As I think about this subject there are many of fragmented perceptions of self, God, and life around us. But the idea of broken comes from a deep place. We all have been broken in some ways or another, but sadly we have been told to ‘put on our big girl pants, suck it up, quit crying about it, move on, grow up, get over it, and the list goes on.’ This is what I call old school ways of dealing with brokenness, or wounding in our case. Many of us are not broken entirely but we have become wounded, and without knowing it we havent fully recovered, we have learned to mask the pain and remain functional. You know that knot in your throat when you are experiencing heartache? Well we were told in the old days to just swallow it and move on. That is absurd to me now, it sounds like just swallowing a spoonful of radioactive plutonium! Might as well be, because it’s a certain sickness, brokenness.
I have a suspicion that a lot of Americans especially have adapted so much that we don’t even know our real being. Many have become functional (with a disorder or vice) humans. I like to think about functional alcoholics but really it applies to everyone at some point or another. The functional alcoholic is the one that drinks during the day to take the edge off, but still doing all of his duties on the job or relationally. It slowly becomes the ‘normal’ to that person. So slowly they lose the sense of their true self. I have to tell you, that this disorder, or dysfunction, or disease if you will is born out of our own frustration to not know how to deal with the wounding in our lives. I know functional workaholics, functional sexual disorders, functional anger, functional eating disorders.
I am realizing that all of these things are not disorders in themselves. Eating, working out, body image worship, having the best stuff, shopping, sex, anger, working these are all healthy, necessary parts of our lives. The problem arises in how you approach each of these. Do you engage in these activities as a means to manifest your identity, or has it become a mask for the unresolved wounding in your own heart. One of my first mentors said once, “What you turn to for comfort in the time of suffering, will eventually become your god.” Wow that honestly has been about thirty something years ago, it has always stuck in my mind.
If we get our self-esteem from external means or works of the flesh. Then the trap is laid out for us. If your sense of self-worth is based upon what you eat or don’t eat, work, wear, possess, or physical attributes, then it can be so easily taken from you. Brene Brown PhD in her book The Gifts of Imperfection says, that we Americans are the most in debt, fattest, over worked, over stressed, pill and drug taking society in the history of humanity. She goes on to describe the idea that we self medicate with whatever the vice is. You have to fill in the blank for yourself. What ever you participate to numb yourself. The problem if you numb yourself to the hurtful things and memories, then you subsequently numb yourself from the good things as well. There is no such thing as selective numbing.
“To understand the historical classification of these disorders, two differing theories relating to the interaction between the mind and body should be considered.
Holism: a theory built upon the foundation that the mind and body are integrated and utterly inseparable.
Dualism: a theory that proposes a separation between the mind and the body.
Greek philosophers Plato, Aristotle, and Hippocrates first proposed the principle of holism about 3,000 years ago, and later in the 12th century; Jewish physician and philosopher Maimonides reexamined this philosophy. Based on holism, the study of medical disease must take into account the whole person rather than merely the diseased part. However, societal concepts of illness and disease drastically shifted when European philosopher Rene Descartes offered the divergent theory of dualism in the 17th century. Prior to the notion of dualism, the church discouraged human dissection on the premise that the spirit resided in the body. The acceptance of dualism paved the 2 way for the emergence of scientific investigation and new medical discoveries by lifting the prohibition of human dissection. This shift in medical thought was congruent with the societal changes of the 17th century: the shift towards a separation in church and state.”
The UNC Center for Functional GI and Motility Disorders – UNC School of Medicine – Chapel Hill N.C.
If we adapt the Dualism approach then we will constantly be treating the symptoms. In my study for seven years on the early fathers of the faith, I learned one main thread throughout all of their teachings. Connectivity, and holistic ideas prevailed in all of their teachings. We are coming back to this idea of sorts. By that I mean we are all one with humanity, and our decisions and choices we make in life affect others for the good or the negative. No one is isolated and separated from the whole. The carnal mind will trick you into believing this, and I have to tell you it is the disease of the mind. This leads to all kinds of problems. I am from the school of thought that our inside life affects our outside life!
Proverbs says, as a man thinketh in his heart so is he. In 3 John he tells us that his prayer that we would prosper and be in health, EVEN as our souls prosper. So here we are in this phase of revelation, God is shining the spotlight on our internal life. It could be quite possible that your external is exposing the broken parts of the internal.
As many of you know I have been on a journey wholeheartedly to find the REAL ME! In my journey so far I have discovered some things about me that were not me. I have been identifying these parts, masks, and numbing agents and getting closer to the REAL ME. Blessings be to you in your journey to find the REAL YOU! Have you been broken but functioning? Is the REAL YOU getting unwrapped and revealed? It is the season to allow the internal to be healed and brought forth.