My mom and I often say that we would rather skip over the month of February because it is the anniversary of the pain that we experienced by saying goodbye to a loved one...a dad and a husband. This past February was no exception, and it was the fifth anniversary of my father’s death.
When pain strikes, why is our initial response to run from it?
In college, I learned about the 5 stages of bereavement that individuals experience when faced with trials.
Sigmund Freud, a famous neurologist, said it best, “Defense mechanisms are thought to safeguard the mind against feelings and thoughts that are too difficult for the conscious mind to cope with.” In other words, putting up a wall while fleeing from trials is easier than dealing with them. We cannot handle the emotions, so we don’t acknowledge them. We do not know how to deal with unexpected change, so we don’t.
We live in a culture of quick fixes. Instead of facing our pain, we seek an immediate fix to cure our pain. Frequently the “fix” is not Jesus. We like band-aids. Unfortunately, band-aids do not heal our wounds properly.
Worldly solutions only numb our pain, but the numbness eventually fades and we are faced with the pain again. Seeking the world to heal wounds will lead to dissatisfaction, idolatry, addiction, and ultimately sin. This response pulls us further away from the One our heart desires to be close to. Only God can truly heal our wounds.
Why do we bring Jesus our brokenness after we’ve attempted and failed at fixing it? Doing this reveals our lack of faith in God’s sovereignty and omnipotence.
Bringing our brokenness to Jesus is contrary to what culture tells us to do. We’re told to act like we’re not hurting. We’re instructed to hide our true feelings. “Bottle it up, deal with it later!”
“Then call on me when you are in trouble,
and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory.”
I’m Not Perfect, God Is
God is the perfect everything. He calls himself our Healer in Exodus 15:26. Therefore, He is our most perfect healer. Seek Him to heal your broken heart, and He will! He is the only One who can successfully restore your brokenness. What the world offers may do that, but only for a moment. I promise you, it will not last! Do not be deceived by the world and Satan's temptation. Temptation is an opportunity for either victory OR sin.
In order to achieve true healing, we have to face the reality of our lives. We have to mourn, cope, cry...and pray! The beautiful thing about being in a relationship with our Savior is that He is always with us. He will carry us through the darkness, IF WE LET HIM (Psalm 18:2, 23:4).
Cling to the one constant in your life...God. Trust Him even when everything around you falls apart.
I Am Loved
I am known and loved by my Heavenly Father (as are you). The Creator of the Heavens and the earth, the stars in the sky, and the creatures on the land, KNOWS me. He knows the depths of my soul and my deepest desires. He knows me entirely better than I know myself (Psalm 139). Therefore, He provides that which I need, when I need it, how I need it, where I need it.
Allow yourself to feel the pain that your heart is currently in. Feel it and then surrender it to God. Nothing in this world can calm us down, comfort us, bring us joy, or offer us peace like God can.
When I don’t allow myself to face pain, I’m not allowing God to really use and transform me to be like His Son.
See you next time in the round,
“Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."