We all go through painful events in life, and our tendency is to sweep our feelings under the rug and ignore them, hoping they go away. However, failure to deal with our hurts and losses creates a perfect environment for depression and despair.
We may think that masking our true feelings protects our heart, but it wounds our spirit, which affects every aspect of our lives. Our spirit, soul, thoughts, feelings and emotions, our physical health and well-being and even our relationships are impacted. It stunts our spiritual growth, emotional and mental maturity and eventually hinders our intimacy with God and people.
We need to take off the masks and become transparent before God. Don’t be afraid to share your pain with Him. Bring Him your broken heart and He will bring His plan of restoration.
In fact, when you are honest with God, He will protect you from making wrong choices. He will keep you connected to people who He predestined to be part of your story and separate you from the rest.
He will give you wisdom and understanding. David told God in Psalm 51:6 “Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.”
Enter into God’s joy, peace and happiness by embarking on what I call the Five D’s.
- Determine what sad experiences or significant losses from the past haven’t you faced? They can be things like divorce, death of parents, rejection, failures, false accusations, unjust criticism, thwarted goals or unrealized dreams. These feelings may be buried deep in your unconscious mind. But just because you don’t think about them doesn’t mean they don’t affect you today. They do.
- Discover the source of your masked pain through earnest prayer. Here’s an example: “Oh Father, let Your peace calm my troubled heart. Please make me aware of my need for healing and bring to my mind hurts I have masked and the circumstances that caused them.”
- Define your feelings with specific statements such as: “_________ made me feel like_______; I am grieving over________; I was so embarrassed when _______; I felt abandoned by_____; I was really hurt when _______; I determined to never let _____ happen again.” Pinpoint and define the hurts you’ve masked all this time. Let God take you out of denial and into inner healing. Make this your year to escape the heaviness you’ve been living with for so long.
- Decide to deeply and genuinely grieve your hurts. Release forgiveness to those who have hurt you and receive God’s forgiveness for holding anger or hatred. There is no justification for anyone with the nature of Jesus Christ to harbor these things. You may also need to forgive yourself for wrong choices that have perpetuated the pain. Ecclesiastes 3:1&7 says, “To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:….. A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak;”
- Deepen your dependence on God. Trust Him to give you emotional freedom. Allow the Holy Spirit to pray through you daily. He’s your physician, your medicine cabinet and He has every antidote you need to make you whole. In fact, it’s His desire.
May the clouds of hopelessness and despair be lifted. May God’s wonderful plans for you be revealed. Remember, He supplied you with everything you need to accomplish them. But first, remove the mask.
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