Broken People Help Broken PeopleSeptember 27th, 2013
I am human. That means I am flawed. I have the natural inclination to sin. And therefore, I am broken. But I am able to keep hope because something I’ve learned in the last few years is that the best person to help a broken person is another broken person. Now that I’ve got that bit of a tongue twister out of the way, let me explain what I mean by sharing part of my story.
I was diagnosed with clinical depression just before I turned 14. It’s been an intense struggle for me over the last 10 years. I have seen many different counselors, changed medication countless times, and even transferred both high school and college hoping that would help. To an extent, each of those things helped, but I’ve never really been able to find the right thing to help me. Then I became a missionary. Don’t get me wrong. My job isn’t a cure for my depression and I still find myself in a struggle with it, but by giving 100% to something that is outside of me, I have found some relief. In serving others, I found what I had been searching for.
I may not completely understand the pain of the kids I work with or the people I come across on a daily basis, but because I know how extremely tough life can be, I can understand to an extent what they are going through. Many of the stories that I hear break my heart. I know kids who left for school in the morning and came home to an empty house – parents nowhere to be found and they haven’t heard from them since. I know kids who were verbally and physically abused by their parents. I know a 16-year-old who started using hard drugs at 8 years old. These kids know pain and if I didn’t have such an intense struggle with depression, I know I wouldn’t be able to relate to them the way that I can. These kids aren’t stupid. They’d know if I wasn’t really able to understand them. Because they know I get it, they trust me, and because they trust me, I can help them.
Sometimes, I feel so unworthy to do what I do. One night not long after I met him, I was going on and on about that to my friend Manuel, who is a seminarian for the Comboni Missionaries, and he said something that has always stuck with me: “Broken people can help broken people better than anyone else. You’re broken and so am I. Now, let’s go fix that broken world out there.”
I fail Christ every single day. Some days, I fall and I have no idea how I’m ever going to get back up. Then, I remember the Passion. I pull myself up, dust myself off, and keep going because each time Christ fell while carrying the cross to Calvary, He got up and kept going – only to meet His death. All to save me. Getting up is worth it. Every single time.
“And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.” – Revelation 21:5