Tag: madman

Are You “Damaged Goods”?


What does it take to push someone over the edge? How much stress can a person take before they snap? Is it a sin to have a mental breakdown?

How long must a person be subjected to abuse before they become damaged goods?

Can a person who’s snapped, gone over the edge, and become damaged goods ever find true freedom and solace; safe from the long reaching arms of their abuser?

I should probably interject something here, as a point of clarification. Abusers (I’m referring to people who damage others either physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually) aren’t necessarily demon possessed, but they ARE allowing themselves to be used by the devil. 
He is a murderer, thief, killer, and destroyer. 

And he uses people to get his junk accomplished. 
I wondered these things while reading the gospel of Mark. 

“They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes. And when Jesus had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones.” (Mark 5:1 – 5:5 ESV)

A wild man. A mad man. Why? How? I don’t know, because the narrative doesn’t go there. 

But it COULD be due to how he was raised, what he was subjected to, or something else involving people from his past. Maybe he allowed hatred and bitterness to fester and grow in his heart until he completely yielded to the powers of darkness. 

I don’t know. 

I do know he was damaged. 

Damaged goods. Not a very nice description, is it? But what does it mean or how does it happen?

I’m really going to simplify things here and answer with three words. 

People hurting people. 

People, for whatever reason, sometimes hurt others. Allow the hurt to continue, and more damage is done. Eventually, if not helped, and the hurt is reinforced with more hurtful actions and words, the person can become so damaged they are beyond anyone’s ability to help them heal.

But not beyond God’s ability to save, heal, and deliver. 

Jesus changed the man’s life by releasing him from the things tormenting him. He didn’t erase the man’s past, but he did disable the power of the past. 

And isn’t it odd how the ones who knew the “crazy” man seemed to have preferred he remain in that condition instead of enjoying true freedom?

The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country. And people came to see what it was that had happened. And they came to Jesus and saw the demon-possessed man, the one who had had the legion, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. And those who had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon-possessed man and to the pigs. And they began to beg Jesus to depart from their region (Mark 5:14 – 5:17 ESV)

That’s what makes me think they were part of the problem in the first place.

The madman in Mark five is, to me, a picture of damaged goods coming in contact with the Lover of the soul. No matter how bad things had become for the man, hurt and total hopelessness met its match that day on the Galilean seashore.

And that’s one huge reason why I love the Lord! He took a damaged person (me) and delivered my life from destruction. 

How about you?

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” (Psalm 103:1 – 103:5 ESV)
 

Crazy Man’s Last Country Tune

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Try and picture, if you can, the crazy man of Gadara as a Country Western singer. Imagine him running through the cemetery wearing nothing more than chains around his wrists and ankles, a belt with a buckle half the size of Texas, and of course, a huge black cowboy hat. Sorry for the visual.

Maybe that’s what opened the door for him to be filled with demons! Too many Honky Tonks and not enough smarts. Hey, we all make dumb decisions, don’t we?

The words below match up with a country-like tune I have in my head. I was thinking about how someone might sound if they truly believed they had things worse than everyone else.

Which, you have to admit, is a great beginning to a CW song.

So, pour yourself a glass of root beer, lean back in your favorite chair, and plant those boots firmly on the table. Feel free to come up with your own tune; just make sure it has that nasally, country whine.

Listen as the Crazy Man sings his last country tune.

Crazy Man’s Last Country Tune

Verse 1:
My head is a-hurtin’,
My stomach’s a-churnin’,
Misery and pain’s got me blue
My hands are a-shakin’,
My hope’s down and fadin’,
Every time I try to win, I lose.

I’ve seen the headlines
I’ve read the story lines
All those hi-def pictures make me cry
But I’m just a mad one
Pain-filled and undone
Yet no one will dare tell me why.

Chorus 1:
‘Cause nobody knows
The trouble I’m in
The dangers without,
The demons within.
Hated and maligned,
I’m like trash on the floor
When will I find release
From this life I abhor?

Verse 2:
Starving kids and lost pets
Don’t compare with regrets
Like the ones I have each and every day
If only I could be free
But no one tries to help me
These dev’lish imps seem to have their say.

Don’t feed me your sad line
I just ain’t got the time
I’ve got enough worries of my own
If you pray, say one for me
Though it’s okay to let me be
I’m really much better off alone.

Chorus 1:
‘Cause nobody knows
The trouble I’m in
The dangers without,
The demons within.
Hated and maligned,
I’m like trash on the floor
When will I find release
From this life I abhor?

Bridge:
Hey, look! Here comes the One
My demons scream, “it’s time to run”
But my heart sings like never before.
The Son, He speaks to me
“Come out of him!”, the demons flee
Praise God! the One named Jesus is Lord!

Chorus 2:
‘Cause Somebody knew
The trouble I was in
The dangers without,
The demons within,
His pow’r set me free,
This One I adore,
My hope is renewed,
My life is restored!

I believe the former crazy man left country western music and began leading praise and worship over in the Decapolis region. Last I heard he was doing well and giving music lessons.

You know, Jesus can free anyone from anything! Yep, even someone who’s possessed by country demons (and rock, classical, rap, etc., demons).

They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes. And when Jesus had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before him. And crying out with a loud voice, he said, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.” For he was saying to him, “Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!” And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, and they begged him, saying, “Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.” So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out, and entered the pigs, and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and were drowned in the sea.

The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country. And people came to see what it was that had happened. And they came to Jesus and saw the demon-possessed man, the one who had had the legion, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. And those who had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon-possessed man and to the pigs. And they began to beg Jesus to depart from their region (Mark 5:1 – 5:17 ESV)

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