Life wounds every one of us.
Disappointments, betrayal, our own mistakes, and the selfishness of others can leave deep and lasting wounds. Oftentimes, we think we have moved on from the situation that caused the wound and feel that time has healed it. It’s just water under the bridge. But underneath the scar tissue of the memories lies a festering sore that has not healed as we thought. We are not even conscious of the wound’s existence or its effect on our lives. But if we are honest, we can see how in certain areas of our lives we are being held back from our highest and best. Something seems to always hold us back that little bit. We’re not experiencing complete joy. We’re not experiencing our complete potential and prosperity. We continue to fall back into old habits and negative mindsets. We continue to repeat the same cycles and mistakes.
So what causes these limitations and repeated ‘trips around the mountain’? I believe many times the issue is woundedness. Like an infection seeping into our system and causing widespread and varied symptoms throughout the body, the infection of woundedness keeps us from the complete freedom that Jesus purchased for us. The enemy has a goal and a plan: If he cannot take our eternal identity, then he would like nothing more than to see us lead an impotent life bound in misery until we die.
But God’s plan is the opposite. Jesus said “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10 ESV) That abundant life includes healing for our woundedness. I don’t know about you, but I realize where I am wounded by how I react when life presses on a certain spot. Just like a bruise that doesn’t hurt until I touch it, certain wounds seem to be gone until life presses on them. And then all of a sudden, I am keenly aware that I am not as healed as I thought! I know I’m wounded when I find my faith in certain areas becomes hard to walk out because of past failures and disappointments. Or when I find that my love walk is hard to maintain because of past betrayals. Or when my identity in Christ becomes hard to hang on to because of my awareness of my own personal failures and areas of unworthiness.
So what do we do with our woundedness? I have tried many things to “heal” myself. I’ve tried listening to sermons, podcasts and reading books. I’ve tried going to groups that deal with the topic I’m struggling with. But the only thing that has ever worked for me is bringing my woundedness in all honesty before Jesus. I have found that it is human nature to hide our woundedness and be ashamed of it. We try to fix ourselves first and then approach the Lord. In the Garden of Eden, after the fall, Adam and Eve hid themselves from the Lord because they were so ashamed of their nakedness. We are no different. When we become wounded, we take it as a slam on ourselves that we’re ‘broken’ and we try to cover it up and mask the wound.
But this is all backwards. Our only hope for healing is to come to the Healer. He is the Balm of Gilead, the Restorer of our souls. In him, our faith and hope are rebuilt and strengthened and we’re set back on course.
Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
Isaiah 61:1 “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, Because the Lord has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners;”
So what does this process look like? What I do when I realize I have a spot of woundedness remaining under the surface is approach the Lord on my knees. Physically on my knees. I find a portion of scripture that deals with my woundedness. Then I come to him, often with my journal, and confess. The fact is that it is sin for me to remain wounded when all healing has been purchased for me. Allowing my wound to live when I have come to the realization of its existence denies the work of Christ on the cross for me. It exalts a lie. But God is not angry at my woundedness. He has no anger for me because it was satisfied at the cross. God is my good Father who is gently revealing my woundedness so that I can repent of my ways and receive healing and freedom. In my honesty and confession I release my pain, frustration and disappointment to him and cry out for healing, strength and faith.
I need to add this: Some wounds maybe so old and deeply entrenched in our personas that it may take more than one visit to the Great Physician to receive complete healing. So do not grow weary in well-doing and don’t give up hope that you’re healing will soon appear. You may have to add fasting to your prayer if you are serious about finding healing for your soul.
Isaiah 58: 6, 8, 9b:
“Is this not the fast which I choose,
To loosen the bonds of wickedness,
To undo the bands of the yoke,
And to let the oppressed go free
And break every yoke?
“Then your light will break out like the dawn,
And your recovery will speedily spring forth;
And your righteousness will go before you;
The glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
9 “Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
You will cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’
The enemy has tried very hard to put you on the sideline and to reframe who you are in your own mind so that you will never rise to your full potential. If you see yourself as a grasshopper through the eyes of your woundedness, you will never rise to your identity in Christ. Therefore, if woundedness has an evil purpose we may need to fight and use weapons of our warfare that are mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds. We may have to go into battle using the weapons of the word, of prayer and of fasting.
Attaining healing from woundedness is vital. We are not the only ones impacted by our healing. Yes we can rejoice as we feel strong and loved and healed; but there are multitudes who need to see a God who heals. They need to see that their woundedness can be ministered to by the Lord Jesus Christ who knows them and loves them and beckons them to come to his presence for healing. Our testimony of being broken and messed up yet loved and healed is the story that people need to hear.
- Have you become aware of an area of woundedness in your heart?
- Do you struggle with cycles of doubt, sadness, chronic disappointment, ungratefulness, jealousy, bitterness or unforgiveness? these are all symptoms of woundedness in our emotions. Ask the Lord to identify how and when you became wounded and to heal that wound with His love and mercy.
The first and most powerful way to jumpstart your healing from woundedness is using thanksgiving as medicine. Just as a doctor would prescribe an antibiotic three times a day for ten days to build up the level of the drug in your system and kill the infection, so thankfulness must be built up inside of us to kill the infection that many wounds have caused. Take the prescription of stating – out loud – ten things that you are thankful for three times a day for ten days and see how much better you feel at the end of the course!
Dear Jesus, thank you for coming in the flesh and bearing the justice and punishment that I deserved when you died on the cross. Thank you for opening up the way for me to come back to the Father and receive healing for every area of woundedness. There is now nothing that this life can pierce me with that Your love and mercy cannot heal. There are no mistakes too great for your compassion. There is no wound too obstinate that You cannot sanctify it with Your grace. There are no lost causes with the Holy Spirit. I am not too broken for You. I am not too far gone in any area that Your love cannot restore me to newness of life! I receive Your love for me today. I receive Your healing for my woundedness. I drink in Your grace to change how I think and how I see myself. I am in Christ and behold, the old things have passed away and now all things are new!
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