|Image and Text by Christina Morley|
Perhaps you lost a parent while growing up and have always felt the void this left. Or your family didn’t know how to show you love. Maybe you were one of the many at school who felt the stinging words of bullies. Or perhaps you were emotionally, physically, or even sexually abused.
Whatever the wounds, they may still leave you wondering if you are special and if you really matter. Your logic tells you that if you were special and if you did matter then those people would never have hurt you. Maybe you’ve even convinced yourself that you deserved to be treated that way. The devil is the author of these kinds of lies. If you have confused the ill-treatment with your self-worth, then you have acknowledged that the devil is right, and God is wrong.
It’s important that we take inventory of our thoughts and emotions on a regular basis. They impact our lives to a great extent. Some of the things that we carry are too heavy for us to bear. God asks us to cast our burdens on to Him because He cares for us (Ps. 55:22). He knows everything in the tiniest detail and understands all human suffering. There is nothing on this earth that goes by Him unnoticed. If a little sparrow falls from the sky, He knows and cares. Yet, He is never gloomy, and He is not wrapped up in negative emotions.
When our emotions are overpowering us, it’s a sign that something is wrong. The matter only worsens if we try to avoid whatever it is that’s bothering us. Usually, we keep ourselves so busy that we’re out of touch with what’s going on deep down inside.
We complicate matters when we don’t search our hearts to discover the source of our problems. Instead, by running from our pain, we develop “ghosts” that don’t go away. These “ghosts” are unresolved issues that resurface and trigger us to react to situations in an inappropriate manner, like when we blow-up at the slightest provocation or respond defensively when spoken to.
Issues that have not been appropriately handled need to be brought into the light. We have to make the choice to face the real reason behind the pain. By bringing these “ghosts” into the light of truth, we will know them for what they really are. No longer will they be faceless wounds. Instead, they will be known as real hurts with names like “rejection” or “neglect.” As each negative experience from the past is distinguished, the better equipped we’ll be to recognize them every time they rear their ugly heads. Then we can deal with them appropriately.