The Israelites "Did not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and their cruel bondage." Exodus 6.9
The Israelites had been in slavery, or bondage for generations. It broke their spirit. When your spirit is broken it is hard to be happy consistently and have hope in view often. Even if you are getting hopeful messages, it is hard to get enthused about it for fear of disappointment.
Slavery conditions you and your thinking. It can knock you down to the point where confidence is lost and you are only just surviving. It is by God's grace alone that you continue in life, it seems.
It is not good to experience slavery whether physical or mental, of the cruel kind. Whether it is because of hard taskmasters at work, or cruel people mentally breaking your spirit, the effect is the same. No peace, and sometimes it is hard to see if there is an end in sight.
On the one hand having a broken spirit is exactly what God wants of me. It enables Him to mould me into the person He wants me to be. Submitting to Him, and allowing Him the freedom to do with me what He wills in a trust relationship. The outcome can only be good. "The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit." Psalm 51.17 God has a useful vessel in us when we are broken.
On the other hand spending too long going through cruel trials may not be Gods will for me. If it makes me repeatedly dejected, and undervalued, I should speak out to God about this. Tell Him in clear terms this is not right.
If you feel like a car with 5 forward gears and you are only using 2, that is not economical driving on a long journey. It might be okay for a few metres worth of driving, but not more. So if you are driving tens of kilometres with just 2 gears something is wrong and it is time to tell God so.
Sometimes I look at the eyes of people who have been in prison or in slavery too long. All the fight has been knocked out of them. The spark of life is gone. They are only just alive. If it is so debilitating, it is not good. I hope I have not reached those depths of defeat.
Sometimes it is hard to recover from these experiences. Last week, I put it to the test. Surely God will restore my thinking and confidence during an 8 day holiday. But it was not restored to the level I hoped. Now at some level I wonder if it ever will. Deep down I believe it will, but it is hard to see it for sure sometimes, most of the time. Maybe you are in a similar position.
God specialises in pleasant surprises, so expect one.
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW
Read more articles by Michael Hume or search for articles on the same topic or others.