You know its crazy how things happen in life after everything that has happened, you believe you have learnt the art of release, you have learned what it means to let but then BAM ! The pain of yesterday tries to come to steal the joy of today. Often in a form of a memory, seared in our insides of a painful event or series. Reminding us of what was the should haves, could haves and never BE’s. Perhaps like me you then you can’t seem to find a way to forget what they said or what they did.
Recently I had a memory flashback of a series of painful events in my life. For several long minutes, it was as though I was actually present in the time and place —reliving every emotion in vivid technicolour, I started to feel sad and angry all over again.
Later, on that week I went over the occurrence with my life coach/ counsellor
“Why,” I wanted to know, “Am I having these thoughts and memories when it’s been dealt with and God is working on the forgiveness and restoration?” I went on to share my response to the flashback, how I had prayed about the incidents, re-affirming forgiveness for everyone myself included and I even searched my heart for unfinished business and prayed again. I realised once more I could only make changes within myself, the other party that was their business with God.
“Sometimes,” my coach said, “a heart-breaking event can cause soul damage. When a painful memory resurfaces, we need to take time with God—at the moment or aside later—to receive His healing into our hearts.”
As I pondered, he said, I realized that my response to the flashback had been to take action. Working out what I could do to fix it, it had not occurred to me to simply receive what Jesus had already accomplished for me and to affirm who He says I am, as His daughter and Heir to the Kingdom! I also realised that I had spent wayyy too much time dwelling on the thoughts than I should have done. I should have not entertained them to the point I did, its good to reflect yes but we can’t let the mishaps of yesterday or yesteryear take up today thus neglecting our usefulness and effectiveness for the day. I killed my good mood by dwelling on what was done and in the end, I didn’t feel good. I Felt depleted and hurt all over again.
This made me wonder What pain of yesterday steals your joy of today? Your hope? Your peace with God?
In what ways does it hold you back? Torment you?
“Come, follow me,” Jesus said. (Mt. 4:19)
How can we follow Jesus when we’re too busy looking back? How can we see where Jesus wants us to step, who he wants us to reach, and what paths he wants us to walk when we are busy filling our mind with the past? When we’re busy asking ourselves why that person did that, where we went wrong, how we could have done better?
“Come, follow me.”
Give up your sore neck that’s always looking back and choose today to look ahead. This doesn’t mean those old memories won’t come, but it does mean you don’t have to indulge your time with them. You don’t have to become consumed with them. That day this verse kept coming into my mind and I wept. “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.” Is. 48:13.
I cried to God for I didn’t want to be consumed with old things that I cant glory in the new things and the blessings, the ways He has used my hardships, pains and hurts to propel me even further in my purpose. As I continued reading, I loved what God said even more!
Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
The wild beasts will honour me,
the jackals and the ostriches,
for I give water in the wilderness,
rivers in the desert,
to give drink to my chosen people,
the people whom I formed for myself.
that they might declare my praise.
Notice this: Here, God doesn’t care much about fixing an old thing;
he cares about doing a new thing! Where there is hurt and pain God is not only reviving but He is planting new seeds! When we see past the days of old, we see the abundance of God. Remember as well that just as long as it takes a seed to grow, so does healing. It’s not an event, it’s a series of work and nurturing that takes place.
Take time with God and trusted the Godly community ( so vital ) to receive His healing. This may be either in the moment that you recall the pain, or in time aside later.
A Flashback can also be our inner self’s means of letting us know that it is ready to face and deal with any buried pain.
- Re-Establish Forgiveness
‘Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.’ (Matt 18:21-22)
Forgiving again whenever you recall a painful event is like keeping a wound clean so that it can heal. This may mean simply re-affirming the forgiveness you have already given.
- You Don’t Need to Handle it Alone
‘Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfil the law of Christ.’ (Gal 6:2)
Sometimes we can work through hurts privately in our personal relationship with God.
However, there are times when we can benefit from others’ help. This could be through a simple discussion, someone to pray with, or Christian counselling.
- Acknowledge and release the hurt to Him
- Consider the heart of the Father to you in the situation—His compassion, comfort, and unconditional love; His complete acceptance, along with His desire to heal you and bring good to your life
- Listen to anything He may want to tell you about the event. The Holy Spirit may lead you to further forgiveness or repentance, or He may simply want to show you something about the situation from God’s perspective
- Thank God for His healing and receive it by faith
- Be still in His Presence.
You may not feel that anything significant has taken place, but you can be assured that God has brought healing to you. I also love Genesis 16 especially vs 13, “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” In the darkest of situations, no matter how hopeless or wrong There is God who sees you! and if you read that story from chapter 16 and before that trust me, you would totally agree and take that precious truth for your life too. For whatever you have gone through and for whatever is new in this season of your life I pray you will be brave to go into the depths of the newness that waits for you. Take a step forward and practise and try the precious truths of God over your life. Yes, it’s painful and sometimes you will wonder how much more you can take, but just as the future is unknown, this present moment too was unknown and was a part of your story not yet written yet God carried you through and Is still doing so. There is so much more to you than what happened, beautiful things are being written in the new that is now and coming. Have faith that whatever is new and unknown can too be beautiful and even greater gain than what we are gone.