Old Wounds: Tricky or Treatable?

in: Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Evil Pumpkin-230

Scripture

Philippians 4:6-7 (New International Version)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Consider

Our oldest wounds can be our trickiest sources of pain and confusion.

Old injuries don’t just fade away with our past and disappear. Rather, they go underground where they fester and generate emotional sore spots that can be easily bruised and re-injured. We may have no idea why someone’s careless remark or unintentional slight deeply wounds us or triggers an instant, angry response. Chances are, the culprit is an old injury that was never fully healed.

Unresolved injuries also shock and confuse us by showing up unexpectedly in our thought life. The memory of a betrayal, a loss, or a malicious act can creep into a normal day and abruptly steal our happiness. Before we know it, our thoughts spiral into old patterns of bitterness and helpless rumination. Old aching pain reawakens and hurts us afresh. Our minds deceive us by rewriting our memories of these painful events, exaggerating and skewing the facts until we can no longer trust what we remember.

God promises that if we turn to him at such difficult and confusing times, he will lift us out of the mire with his own hands and cushion our thoughts and feelings against the hurtful pull of old pain. He will suffuse us with a supernatural peace we cannot understand and could never achieve on our own. If we ask him, he will give us wisdom to recognize an old injury in a fresh wound and to overcome the trickery of our faulty memories. Through his loving reassurance, God can begin to heal our painful past and guard our hearts against further injury from that same source.

Pray

FATHER, some wounds seem too awful to forget, too hurtful to forgive. Some wounds will not let me out of their grip—you know which ones I mean. Help me to realize when I am surrendering the present moment to useless anger and ruminations about events that cannot be changed. Deliver me from the trickery of misremembering. Send me your peace to quiet my agitated thoughts as you hide me in the shadow of your loving hand.

Reflect

Isaiah 51:16; John 14:27

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Which old wounds continue to rob you of peace? How can God reassure you?

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