Do you remember when the Jerry Springer show first came out? It was a circus side show, staged drama for entertainment. Some 25 years later, unfortunately the unproductive and dysfunctional chaos has become more of a norm. Reality shows and raunchy sit com’s have grown out of that genre and have only reinforced the negativity, cut throat rivalries and sarcastic meanness.
Drama is characterized by exaggeration, manipulation, chaos, and pot stirring. It can produce adrenaline, helping people find the drive to get through the day, a reason and a purpose that they might not normally have. It can be a diversion from something in the drama prone person’s life, like going to work or cleaning the house. It can also redirect attention from something that is amiss in one’s life so that others are so busy focusing on a perceived oppressor that they might not notice the unattended to matters in the drama queen’s own life. Drama as a way of life can also be a way of replicating an adult’s childhood. If arguing, fighting, name calling and chaos was the way things were, then that’s what people get used to. They then recreate it, because if things were calm and peaceful, they might have to get to work instead of having an excuse not to move ahead on more productive affairs.
The players in the queen’s court includes a victim and a rescuer–along with a villain, real or imagined. Some people find their identity by being a rescuer and an enabler. It creates a need and a meaning that they might not normally possess or discover. In order to be a rescuer, you have to have victims that need protected and stuck up for. The more people that depend on you, the bigger your tiara is. As for the victim, if it’s always someone else’s fault, then the victim never needs to change or do something herself–other than criticize the rescuer if it didn’t work.
Anger is mixed in there. Anger at villains, at circumstances, at the rules of life. And then bitterness sets in, and it can be a way of life, thinking that you’ve always drawn the short straw. That’s when meanness sets in and takes over, with no regard to those who get in the way.
“You can’t handle the truth” was Jack Nicholson’s line in “A Few Good Men.” Perhaps the truth is that you haven’t worked your way out of a hole, or made some choices that can be learned from, rather than that you’ve been cheated and mistreated by an evil empire. Another thing that is hard to handle is taking responsibility for our own choices and actions and letting others do the same. It is easy to shift blame and never lift a productive finger.
Emotionally healthy adults have no need or desire for drama. Drama is a deflection, it is divisive, and it is dysfunctional. It is one TV show that I do NOT want to participate in or watch.
Spiritually speaking, in the book of Nehemiah there were two guys in particular that tried to stop a mission from God with drama. Their names were Sanballat and Tobiah. They tried a variety of tactics to keep Nehemiah and his workers from working on rebuilding the wall that surrounded Jerusalem. It was a mission of utmost importance, because Jerusalem and the Temple were and still are the apple of God’s eye. It’s the place where Jesus will one day sit on the throne and be the King of the world. There has always been a fight over that spot and there always will be until Satan is defeated.
Sanballat and Tobiah were simply tools of Satan’s to attempt to taunt, distract, disrupt, threaten, intimidate and divert to keep the wall from being built. Nehemiah, led by God, had his men build with a tool in one hand and a weapon in the other. He stood on truth and reminded himself, the Jews and his enemies of those truths. He said “I have important job to do,” and wouldn’t be deterred or distracted away from it. God gave him discernment to see behind their plots and didn’t get pulled into their insults or attempts to cause him to sin.
Nehemiah called out “God, strengthen my hands,” in Nehemiah 6:9. Strengthen my hands, give me discernment and help me to run, not walk from drama and the grace to aptly stand and not be lured to sin when Mean Jean strikes.
2 Corinthians 2:11 “We would not be outwitted by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his designs.”