So many people are afraid of dealing with emotional health issues. Many do not feel that they have the strength or the competence to effectively address issues that have been strongholds in their lives. If anyone tells you that healing and/or recovery is easy, they are not telling the truth! Recovery is an everyday, complicated, draining, complex, and multi-dimensional process that deals with all of the aspects of our being (spiritual, emotional, physical, etc.). Our goal is that we will make the profound changes that are necessary for healing our hearts and souls. This growth/healing will take an optimal level of determination, focus, resources, and commitment.
My personal heroes have had the courage to change and also realize that we all are ‘works in progress’. For many of us, relationships come easy, we enjoy fellowship, and we have no problems praying and studying our bibles everyday. For some, these things are severe challenges that they have to consistently fight to do. Thus – these fighting and courageous friends are my heroes! I hope and pray that you too will be encouraged by this hero’s daily decision to allow God to transform her life and to provide healing and deliverance!
My dear friend’s testimony:
I was a single mom and disciple for fifteen years when given the opportunity to participate in the Healing for Damaged Emotions group discussion. In theory, it sounded good. However, after I committed and as the first meeting approached, I found myself wrestling with thoughts concerning why it was not a good idea to participate. I didn’t want to rehash old issues, I didn’t know the people who would be in the group, and I didn’t want to expose my inner turmoil to anyone else. I also didn’t want to make friends that would only last during the group sessions. I kept thinking about why I wanted to join such a group in the first place.
Then it dawned on me that God knows me (Psalm 139) and He knows what’s going on inside me. I realized that I was afraid and (since I am a visual person) I pictured myself standing on the threshold of the fear of revealing things to others and confronting issues never discussed. I had a choice to make: I could continue to be haunted and ‘damaged’ or I could allow God to show me something different. I chose to try. It was not easy.
Each meeting we discussed and worked on assignments from one or two previously read chapters. Chapter 4 (Satan’s Deadliest Weapons) enabled me to see a perspective that was different from mine and it empowered me to see that God is real and that He has a plan for the ugliest situations. Many who started the discussions, for various reasons were not able to complete the workbook. I did and I’m happy that God gave me the courage to go to each discussion. The discussions were the first step in the plan God had for me to heal wounds that existed deep within. He wanted to heal even the pain that only He knew. I wasn’t miraculously healed overnight, but God made it known and clear to me that I was not forgotten, I wasn’t ruined, and I had a purpose in the exact state that I was in.
Though I shared with the group that I was sexually assaulted, it wasn’t until our last meeting (after thirteen months) that I was able to share that it was actually my father who was the assailant. Not only did he abuse me sexually, but he was horribly physically abusive to my mother. The safe environment in our discussion group allowed me to have that breakthrough!
I now have confidence that God loves me. I trust that He will teach me what I do not yet understand. I smile when I think of God. I am so grateful for His love, compassion, and mercy. He continues to hold my hand through my journey and I’ve learned the comfort of leaving my burdens and pain with Him, allowing Him to lead me.
This hero of mine is healing past traumas and experiencing God’s comforting presence!! I pray that you will allow God to turn your heart and soul growth goals and ‘tests’ into testimonies of deliverance and healing!
“This is the last freedom – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” – Victor Frankl
O God and Heavenly Father, Grant to us the serenity of mind to accept that which cannot be changed; courage to change that which can be changed, and wisdom to know the one from the other, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.