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Tag Archives: wounds to the soul

Traumatized

 

One of the medical websites I researched lists 5 specific categories of trauma.  Complex, Early Childhood, Medical, Refugee and Traumatic Grief.  The actual definition of this term refers to any experience that inflicts deep distress or is emotionally disturbing.  This state is often induced by accidents, injuries or witnessing someone die.  Anyone who endures such an event can be traumatized for hours, days, weeks or months.

Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you, 1 Peter 5:7.

Anyone alive during the life of Christ may have seen one of the most brutal ways to die.  After receiving up to 39 lashing in the public square, Jesus carried a cross until Simeon took over and then was crucified.  Even those who despised Jesus’ message, must have felt pity or remorse at some point.  Despite his innocence, Herod followed Jewish tradition, setting the criminal Barabbas free as a mob demanded Jesus to die in his place.  If those who have seen this gore in the Passion of the Christ struggle to watch, image the trauma exhibited by those who were disciples and followers of God’s son.

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, Psalm 107:13-16.

One of the difficult signs of trauma is that its often invisible.  Sure, body language, facial expressions and posture reveal someone who is mourning.  Yet, wounds to the soul go unnoticed, lingering for months, years or in worse case scenarios, a lifetime.  In certain cases, guilt causes some to remain traumatized until they forgive themselves.  This situation is played out in Good Will Hunting where Robin Williams playing a psychologists tells Matt Damon, an orphan its not your fault.  If you find yourself trying to recover from a traumatic events, may the prayer of the Psalmist above provide the words to receive the healing that you seek and strive to achieve.

by Jay Mankus

 

The Tug of War between Self-Esteem and Pride

On a level playing field, there isn’t much between winning and losing.  Whoever possesses confidence often comes out on top.  While talent does make a difference, self-esteem either strengthens or weakens individuals.  Too much success can go to your head, creating a false sense of security.  Thus, the tug of war between self-esteem and pride commences.

I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses, 2 Corinthians 12:5.

The psyche craves encouragement, wanting to receive positive feedback.  Although constructive criticism can be beneficial, compliments boast one’s self-esteem like a pat on the back.  Yet, balance must be achieved by surrounding yourself with people who are  honest, realistic and truthful.  Maintaining this atmosphere is crucial to keeping you from going back and forth between self-esteem and pride.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me, 2 Corinthians 12:9.

Unfortunately, wounds to the soul leave most wallowing in self pity.  In a cruel world that can be unforgiving, recovering from any defeat is tough.  Perhaps, the words of apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians was meant to console and educate those with lost confidence.  Whenever you feel like you can’t go on, reach out to Jesus in prayer and God will provide the strength to carry on.  Subsequently, as the momentum turns in your favor don’t forget to thank the good Lord above so that pride doesn’t invade your soul.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

Blotting Out Your Past

Whether you’re young or old, everyone has scars, wounds from the past which mask pain and suffering.  Like  bringing home a brand new car, dings, scratches and wear quickly appear.  Perfection fades ushering in guilt, shame and uncomfortable feelings.  These emotions prompt individuals to yearn to blot out their past.

As David comes to grips with his rebellious ways in Psalm 51:1, he leans on God’s mercy.  Images of his sin haunt David, brought to the forefront of his mind by the devil.  Snapping out of his mean streak, a humbled heart brings this servant of God to his knees.  Like resetting a video game to start over after making a careless error, we have all longed for God to blot out portions of our past.

Although memories will always return, God’s love can turn the ugliness of sin into snow, restoring a sense of purity to souls, Isaiah 1:18.  The message of resurrection isn’t limited to one day or merely for a season.  Rather, the triumph of Jesus over the cross, Colossians 2:15 is available daily, Lamentations 3:22-23.  Therefore, don’t let the devil steal your joy any longer, John 10:10; hit the reset button by asking God to blot out the sins of your past.

Please feel free to share testimonies of God’s power to forgive.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

Obscuring the Truth

 

In 1987, Def Leppard ‘s album Hysteria introduced the dark side to falling in love.  The lyrics of Love Bites examines the emotional side of love as described in the final 2 stanzas below.  While several songs in the past have written about God’s agape or brotherly love, Def Leppard touches on the scars, wounds to the soul inflicted by intimate relationships that fall apart when feelings fade.

Love bites love bleeds – it’s bringin’ me to my knees
Love lives, love dies
Love bites love bleeds – it’s bringin’ me to my knees
Love lives love dies – it’s no surprise
Love begs love pleads – it’s what I need

If you’ve got love in your sights
Watch out, love bites

Modern commercials, sitcoms and television programming are some of the biggest offenders of obscuring truth.  The images portrayed on the screens inside of American homes glorify temptation while minimizing any after affects.  This hyperreality conceals the reality that actions and words do have consequences.  Thus, when an individual carries out a similar act or behavior in life, the words of Def Leppard often rings true, “love bites!”

 

When Jesus receives the news that one of his close friends is dead, he wept, John 11:32-35.  This wasn’t a movie scene; these were genuine tears brought on the pain one feels expressed by Def Leppard’s song.  As soon as a human being opens their heart, becoming connected to another soul, their are taking at risk at love.  Although happy endings do occur on occasion, don’t be afraid to take a chance, especially on the One who sacrificed His only son for you and for me, John 3:16-17.

by Jay Mankus

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