By Theresa Boedeker
Does your heart carry deep disappointments and hurts? Does it feel scarred and knotted? This happens to all of us because we live in a fallen world and are human. Despite the trauma or hurt you have suffered, inner healing is possible because God desires to renew and rebuild our hearts.
Bad Things Happen to All of Us
None of us gets through life without accruing pain, disappointment, heartache, or trauma.
Parents divorce. Natural disasters and pandemics occur. Loved ones die. Childhood scars resurface. Medical problems develop. Accidents take place. Dreams get detoured or squashed. A myriad of small hurts can add up to big losses.
Bad things happen to all of us, and then we need to deal with the fall out. The emotions, the triggers, the stress, the waves that ripple across our lives.
Our Choice: Heal or Stay Hurt
We can do the work of inner healing, or we can ignore the big, dark, scary closet and bolt the door shut, determined to never let anything slip out. But as time marches on, this gets harder and harder.
Our unhealed hurts affect us, our relationships, our views on life, our views of others, our views of God, our self-esteem, and our daily choices.
Inner healing helps us:
(1) notice and embrace the good again
(2) help others
(3) allow God’s love and truth to change us
(4) not pass our hurts onto the next generation
(5) not live life on repeat
(6) not grow bitter and skeptical
(7) grow in compassion and empathy
(8) be better friends, parents, and people
Our choice to engage in inner healing not only heals us, but blesses others.
12 Truths About Inner Healing
You can apply these 12 truths about inner healing to yourself, or share them with someone you know who needs to experience this type of healing.
1. Healing takes place in safe communities: with friends, in small groups, talking to others, working with a therapist, or sharing with God. It requires talking vulnerably about our hurts, processing our hurts, and being listened to and seen. Eventually it requires doing the same for others. When this is done, healing takes place for both the listener and speaker.
2. Compassion and kindness is required. Self-judgment, shame, and guilt from yourself or others do not bring healing. View your past and younger self with compassion and kindness.
3. Notice patterns. We often make the same choices hoping for a different outcome. When we take notice of the patterns, we can make necessary changes.
4. One hurt often awakens other hurts. Sometimes they are tied together with a theme or similar pattern, and sometimes the current loss is resurfacing past losses not fully grieved.
5. Name and grieve losses. We cannot fully heal and move on until we name and process our losses and griefs.
6. Nothing ever returns to normal. Life is different, and we are different after the healing process begins.
7. Process emotions as they come up. Journal or talk about your insights, emotions, feelings, and connections, with a safe friend, therapist, or God.
8. Look for God in the story. He was there and is a central part of your story. Ask him to show you where he was. Share your feelings with him and ask him to heal you.
9. Look at the story you are telling yourself regarding your pain or trauma. Lie: Something is wrong with me. I just need to try harder. Truth: I am only responsible for my own actions and responses. My job is not to please everyone.
10. Celebrate your healing. The big and small steps, all along the way, are worth celebrating.
11. Shed the false story. You created it to be safe and make sense of the world. Instead, adopt God’s story. His story about you is the true one. False story: I must earn love. God’s story: You are loved unconditionally. You don’t need to earn my love.
12. Allow God to be the hero of your story. He is the one who unconditionally loves you no matter what your past or how broken you are. He intimately cares for us and ties up our wounds and heals us – if we let him.
No one gets through life unharmed, but with God, those hurts turn into points of hope. They help us see God and long for a time and place where there will only be perfection and beauty on earth.
To learn about 16 other truths about healing from hurts, click here and get a six-page freebie from Theresa: 28 Truths About Healing from Hurts
Wife Step: What one thing do you need to remember as you process and heal from past hurts? What do you think your mate most needs as he heals?
Theresa Boedeker has been married to her husband, her complete opposite, for over 30 years. They live in the Midwest and have two children, 15 years apart, and a few grandkids. Theresa daily hunts for humor and tries to bring forth laughter from others. She is passionate about helping women smash lies with God’s truth. Overcome shame. Learn to laugh at life and themselves. Notice God’s love and grace. And not be afraid of making mistakes. She unwraps life and faith at TheresaBoedeker.com. When she is not writing, she enjoys doing creative things like cooking, making jewelry, and taking photos of flowers (they never run from the picture).