Deb S. started the group off with an introduction to our lesson on being wounded, sharing her own personal story of her life. Very few of us come into this life with the perfect environment to grow up in.
And many of us become wounded in the process of living life, which we either deal with it or repress it.
It is amazing what the human mind can block to protect itself when the hurt is deep enough. But there is hope in healing all our wounds, when we allow God to work in our lives.
This chapter begins with the story of Carrie who was truly delight in as a little girl. She knew her father cherished her....and she knew her mother loved her. She was enjoyed...and she was cherished.
However, for most of us..that is not the story of our lives. For most of us, our brokenness began in our childhood because our mothers and fathers and others around us were not who we needed them to be.
Women learn from their mothers what it means to be a woman and from their fathers the value that a woman has--the value they have as a woman. And sadly..the messages we received where not healthy or supportive of our deepest needs.
Little girls need the tender strength of their fathers. They need to know that their daddies are strong and will protect them. They need to know that their fathers are for them.
But many of us had abusive or absent fathers. Fathers who had affairs...fathers who did not love their mothers...
So many girls, therefore, learned something like this...hide your vulnerability...hide your heart. You are not safe.
And as children, since we are too young to understand or correctly process what is happening to us, we believed that these things were our fault...the problem must be in us.
We don't revisit the wounds of our lives to feel sorry for ourselves, but for the purposes of God to heal us. He invites us to grieve our wounds and to receive His comfort and then His healing. But to be healed, we must once again let God tenderly open our wounds and expose them to the light of His love and His truth.
What was interesting to me was that Deb S. had shared how her wounds changed how she parented. We talked more about this when we broke down into our groups. We can be overprotective in the areas we were hurt in, and by controlling things so much we may hurt our children in the long run. We may make them feel incapable of making their own decisions and hurt by the lack of trust they may feel from us. We may feel shame from our past that changes our responses to our families in a negative way, simply because, one it is a secret, and two we haven't dealt with it.
For instance, if the father of the family is having an affair and the mother knows, she may be in so much pain and depression, it comes out on the children. The children don't have a clue what is going on and take on a wound from the withdrawn and the lashing out that can come from it.
I feel at least for myself, it was a generational wounding that was past down through the parenting. My great grandmother came from a large family and she was the youngest. A twin actually, her mother died during childbirth. Her father remarried shortly after and she was given away and raised by another family. That doesn't make you feel wanted when the new bride doesn't want the children that are there. She grew up fast marrying at only 14 years old with a wounded heart of no love from her parents.
She had three children, one being my grandfather. She decided at one point she didn't want to be married and took the two youngest with her out of state. As my aunt tells it, she would threat them by saying she would sell them and they grew up in fear that she could get rid of them at any time. I'm sure they did not feel valued or secure in the love of any parent. My grandfather turned into an alcoholic to I'm sure cope with his wounds.
My mom was going to change things for herself by being in control of her world when she married at 16. She was emotionally unavailable to me growing up, and my father absent a lot of the time. My mother often shutting down emotionally because of issues between her and my father that I had no clue about. I felt my worth was not in being, it was only in being useful. My mom was not one to want to take me shopping or be involved in the important events in my life. She never attended my bridal or baby showers. My mother in law took notice of all this and one day said your mother doesn't love you. Talk about cut to the core, that was my deepest fear, my biggest wound. I cried for days because I felt it must be true. It did not stop me from pursuing my mom in a big way trying to please her every way I could to get her love and attention.
Healing our wounds is not just important for us, but everyone our lives touch as well. The wound has tentacles that will wrap itself around other areas of our lives. But there is hope in healing for us all.
God gave me this verse yesterday and it's one we all need to hear, that God can make something new for us.
Isaiah 43:18 & 19
Do not remember the former things, Nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth; Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
We all need to ask God to reveal to us the ways that believing these things has shaped our lives. Are you ready and willing to consider the secret, awful things you have come to deeply believe about yourself are not true and that you did not deserve the wounds you received: What if they are lies? What would that mean about you and your life? What if the message delivered with your wounds simply isn't true about you?
The questions, "Does God see me? An I captivating? Do I have a beauty all my own?" are questions we must ask of God. We must ask Him what He sees. We need to take this to Him.