Broken Fortress

It is very easy to tear down people, condemn and gradually destroy them. It takes extra effort, love and patience to bring out the best in people, tolerating and accommodating them, especially those with already broken fortresses.

Every single individual has a self-fortress, touch that fortress and you will be crashing the person. There is something in every person that keeps him or her from totally giving up, point fingers at that thing and you will be killing the person slowly. Everyone still has some level of self-respect and self-image left in him/her, consistently step on these and the person will be dying slowly within. Everyone has a self-fortress that can be broken, do not be the one breaking down someone’s fortress. Everyone is different around us. The people we see, every single individual, have one or two things that may have happened in their lives. People have been through all kinds of terrible things in the past and some are still going through these. People are suffering for some things in their past, even some that are no fault of theirs. People are struggling with a whole lot- broken inside out, crashed to the core. Some of these individuals have nothing left to live for, fighting with the determination to die. People are suffering from the pains and hurt and memories of broken homes, rape and assault, abuse and emotional neglect, mental disorders, traumas, hunger and physical illnesses. These things have drained the strength and life out of them.

Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made ~ Robert Browning.

To feel part of humanity, some of these individuals resort to all kinds of lifestyles, take some decisions and make choices which later will harm them. Some become aggressive and so unfriendly, some take to drugs and all kinds of sexual acts, others too shut themselves from the rest of the world. Many others even give up on making efforts to look good and presentable in appearance, speech and conduct. These people have come across different categories of people. Some of these people eventually hurt them so badly, crashed them with their words, deeds and actions of condemnation, judgment and criticisms. The saddest part is that when some of these people finally trace their steps to the church, the house of God, hoping to find love, acceptance and some kind of belonging, they are often disappointed. Some evil persons in the church they come in touch with take advantage of their brokenness and vulnerability, leaving them completely shattered. Some of these people don’t believe in love and goodness anymore. They don’t believe in the goodness of people without ulterior motives.

Unfortunately, we are not able to easily identify these individuals. Even you reading this piece right now may be one of them. Some of them smile and engage in all kinds of good activities to conceal their deep feelings of hurt and pain so we may not know them. We are all broken in one way or the other. Why don’t you and I be the difference in the lives of the people around us? Do not tear down the self-image and self-respect of people. Accept people as they are and do not try to force them to be the ideal person you want them to be. Some of them are already struggling to become the better version of themselves, why don’t you become that one person they can lean on? Sometimes we feel, constantly blasting and being hard on people will bring out the best in them. No. It rather crashes and discourages them to make extra efforts. Respect, patience, love and encouragement is all they need. When you give them this, they will rise and rebuild their broken fortresses, with you building with them.

“If we could look into each other’s hearts and understand the unique challenges each of us faces, I think we would treat each other more gently, with more love, tolerance and care”. Give people reasons to believe in the goodness of people. Give them reasons to rebuild their broken fortresses. You may be their last pillar they are holding on to.

Philemon Gbadago