I’m asking that you bear with me on this one. This post is longer than what I had planned. However, after writing what follows, I realized that this couldn’t be split up and that it just needs to be all inclusive. Please take the time to read through it all. Then schedule some secluded time with the Lord to let Him minister to you. I pray that you allow God to prepare your heart for healing.
When I was a young Christian and had just started dating my husband, a couple people said some harsh things to me. They said that I was damaged and not worthy of him. They also said that John, my boyfriend at the time, should not even consider marrying me. Of course, when I heard these kinds of things they made me angry. I was hurt and confused because I truly believed that when I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior that the following verse became a reality in my life.
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
The new creation that is being talked about is our spirit. That’s what we term born-again. So, what does that mean for our physical, mental and emotional realm? The answer to that is found in Romans 12:2 (NKJV) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. So, now that our spirit is renewed, we need to renew our mind and allow God to work on our mind, our will and our emotions. So, here we go.
I got on my knees and began to seek the Lord about why I felt that I wasn’t good enough for John. I actually realized that deep down I agreed with them. The next few hours were some of the most heart wrenching that I’d experienced. You see, up until that day, I had learned to turn off almost all of my negative emotions. I lived behind a carefully constructed wall of denial that I put in place early on when I was being abused. I’d learned that if I could check-out, by imagining I was elsewhere, then I wouldn’t feel the pain of what was happening to me. I eventually became so proficient at escaping that even years after the abuse stopped I couldn’t remember whole chunks of my life. But during this time, in the presence of God, those lost moments, days and weeks came flooding back. I remembered the fear, heartache, betrayal, disgust, embarrassment, pain and the biggest emotion of all…shame.
So you may be asking, “Why go through those awful memories?” Well I’m sure I didn’t go through them all. In fact, what was being remembered was not the gruesome details of the abuse, but how I felt. That is what was shut-off in my life and needed to get opened back up again…the ability to feel. No, I’m not asking you to re-feel all those things but to allow the Lord to clean out the old wounds so that He can disinfect them with His love.
I began to see that child again. The floodgate was opened. I wept for her. I grieved for that little girl that was hurt by the very person that should have been protecting her. I had never felt so much pain and grief. I’d never cried that hard in my life. I felt like I was being cleansed, in a way, to the very core of my being by the tears. Through the whole experience, I knew that the Lord was right there with me. During this time with Jesus, I felt that I’d finally let that little girl feel again. Before that, she was always hiding, both physically and emotionally. When we are so full of shame our typical response is to hide, just like Adam and Eve did in the Garden of Eden when they were ashamed. They hid from God.
In order for us to have a healthy relationship with Jesus, we have to be open and honest with Him. No hiding! Often, the Lord speaks to my heart saying, “If you allow me to reveal it, then I can heal it.” After allowing myself to grieve the bad things that happened to me then I could move on to my journey of healing. I could actually feel again. Having so many years of bottled up emotions left me emotionally stunted. But the good news is that He heals the broken-hearted.
Luke 4:18 (NKJV)
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
Just as each of us is a unique masterpiece fashioned by the Lord, we each have a unique story. We have been broken differently through what has happened to us. Even if we hold up two identical sculptures and drop them from equal distance onto cement, they will break differently. Their pieces will have different ways of fitting back together and if you try to glue a piece on the wrong sculpture it will be distorted or deformed. So it is with us. Allow the Lord to direct you in your grieving process if you haven’t yet grieved. He is the artist.
If this process is too hard for you to do alone with the Lord; if you feel like you’re sinking into darkness with the memories, please contact a pastor or someone you trust to talk to. If you feel deeply depressed, please contact a professional. Don’t let this part of the process leave you in darkness. The goal is not to wallow in the emotions but to process through them to make a fresh start. If you feel you’ve already grieved, then don’t go there again. It’s not necessary. Also, you may be tempted to yield to feelings of resentment or self-pity at this juncture. Trust the process. God will not bring you this far to abandon you now. You are worthy of being healed and it is His will that you are completely restored to emotional health. Trust Him!
If you don’t know Jesus, personally, as your Lord and Savior, then that is where we need to start. The gospel is so much more than getting into heaven when we die. We can experience a bit a heaven while on this earth when we give over the Lordship of our life to the One who designed us. Romans 10:9-10 (NKJV) That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart, one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation. It’s that simple. Just ask. Romans 10:13 (NKJV) For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Just pray, “Lord God, please forgive me for all my sins. I truly want to make a fresh start. I believe that your son Jesus died for my sins, was raised from the dead and is alive to hear my prayers. Jesus, please come into my life and be my Lord and my Savior. Thank you for sending your Holy Spirit to lead me and guide me from this day forward as I purpose to live for you.” Amen.
You don’t have to have any outward evidence of your grieving, you don’t have to make yourself cry. The important part is asking the Lord to cleanse you from the pain of your past. The important part is to cast your cares on Him. I pray that you will begin to feel the joy and freedom that comes from releasing your grief and pain to the Lord.
Here are a few more scriptures for you to meditate on concerning scriptural grieving by giving it over to the Lord. Please take the time to read these. Read them in context including the verses around them. Take time to write in your journal about what you think these verses mean. Record anything that stands out to you that the Lord speaks to your heart or just simply how you felt going through this exercise.
Psalm 34:18 (NLT)
18 The Lord is close to the brokenhearted;
he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.
Psalm 147:3 (AMP)
3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds [curing their pains and their sorrows].
1 Peter 5:7 (AMP)
7 Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.
4 Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses, weaknesses, and distresses) and carried our sorrows and pains [of punishment], yet we [ignorantly] considered Him stricken, smitten, and afflicted by God [as if with leprosy].
5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has made to light upon Him the guilt and iniquity of us all.
John 14:26 (AMP)
But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you.