“Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and burst their bonds apart. Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man! For he shatters the doors of bronze and cuts in two the bars of iron.”
“He heals the brokenhearted, and bandages their wounds.”
Let the words from the Scriptures above reach down into your soul and bring healing. Our God is able to bring us out of dark times and burst our bonds. He is able to shatter doors of bronze and iron. What does that mean? He is stronger than anything in our lives and able to help us overcome what seems insurmountable. Whatever has us shackled, whether it is the past, filled with heart breaking sorrow, or the future that we are dreading as some news threatens to steal your joy, everything is possible for we who are overcomers in Christ Jesus.
We are fearfully and wonderfully made by a loving God. Fragile enough to be harmed, but strong enough to recover. But sometimes the hurt goes so deep and has affected us so profoundly that it appears hopeless that we will ever see real healing.
Life is hard enough without all the harm people do to other people. Growing in responsibilities and facing all of life’s surprises is made significantly more difficult when we go through something so horrific it alters our very existence and approach in life.
Emotional turmoil brought on by traumatic events is not an easy fix. We can see easily enough wounds wrought on the surface, whether it is a scraped knee or a more serious physical injury, but the wounds to the heart and the human spirit are not so easily discerned or healed. How does one heal from abuse? A sudden death? A diagnosis that is too hard to bear?
Jesus. Yes, I know – it is the answer everyone says in Sunday school class when they don’t know the answer. Ironically enough, He is the answer. What does it mean to give someone Jesus? It means running to His Word and searching for comfort there. It means that people who have been traumatized just want to be understood. We do not just want meals or wise words thrown at us. We need someone to weep with us and help us to see that God does have a hope and a future. We need someone to climb down in the pit with us and help us find a new way of functioning; acknowledging the sorrow but then asking God with us for wisdom and for His solution as well as practical helps.
I write today as one who has endured a lot of significant trauma in my life and seen God’s healing hand in my life. I write as someone who wants to help other people I love dearly and people I do not know receive this same healing. Facing the trauma takes bravery and honesty. We have to expose the lies. We are not the only one. Part of trauma’s potent blow is that we feel isolated, strange, different because we have suffered something that we do not want to utter. No one else wants to hear about it, either. Choosing to not believe the lies that are encompassing us about as we try to grab onto some hope that we will not always be “damaged” is nothing short of miraculous.
Sometimes the only trust we can have is in the fact that God is good and that He keeps His promises. Even believing this truth is challenging when we are myopic and our view is clouded by our pain.
Believing that we are not defined by our deepest sorrow takes faith. It means taking God at His word. Despite the fact that our suffering has affected us in such negative ways, the only label we need bear is “child of God”. Not “victim”, not “strange”, but “beloved” and “cherished” and “healed” by a God Who loves us.
When we do not have the strength to muster to proclaim that we have overcome and we no longer have it in us to keep going, that place which seems like an end is a new beginning. At the end of ourselves, we can only look to Jesus. Like the woman who grabbed the cloak of Jesus in desperation, we need to come to that end of trying to make it on our own and admit our need of Him to heal us. We are not strong enough or wise enough to heal on our own, but our God Who made us is.
Lord, there are so many hurting people and my heart breaks for each one. I know You are enough – help me to be Your hands and feet and to bring healing to your children through Your Word and Your holy Spirit. Help all victims to arise as victors in Christ; give us strength and heal us from the deepest place of our wounds and show Yourself as Almighty God. Nothing is too difficult for You, our Jehovah Rapha.