By Gordon King, CBM Global Discipleship and Canadian Engagement Resource Specialist
I often use the adjectives “broken” and “wounded” to describe the world. Placed together they express the collective impact of evil and destructive patterns of behaviour on human lives. The wounded hearts and bodies of people and the broken social fabric of communities contrast with God’s intention to bless his creation with peace. The Hebrew word “shalom” conveys the meaning of wholeness or health. A person who enjoys God’s gift of peace lives fully and meaningfully with God, family, community and the environment. Justice, compassion and faith are active values in locations of shalom.
The terms broken and wounded can be used to convey the circumstances of:
- A farmer in Kenya whose crops have failed because of climate change.
- A Syrian woman raped as part of the violent intimidation of civilian populations.
- A mother in Bangladesh who lost her daughter when fire engulfed a clothing factory.
- The retired pharmacist in Greece whose suicide note said that he retained too much dignity to look for food in the garbage.
- A 15-year-old girl in India who will be married to a man three times her age because he paid a dowry to her family.
- A teenager in Canada who struggles with an anxiety disorder and contemplates ending his life.
It is not difficult to find wounded and broken people; it is challenging to analyze and constructively deal with the evil or sin that causes their suffering. Continue reading