When Your Past Hurts Your PresentApril 19th, 2017 | in Health and Healing | 0
When Your Past Hurts Your Present
Freedom from “drugs of choice”
By: Lois Wilson
Note: This article first appeared on page 22 in the Spring/Summer 2017 issue of Alliance Connection magazine.
Would it surprise you to know how many people seated around you on Sunday morning are hurting? Many of us come to church wearing masks of happiness and peace, when actually we are crumbling inside.
Depression is increasing, marriages are failing, and the wounds of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse grip us with anxiety. Things we are hiding deep in our hearts are flooding us with guilt.
Not too long ago, I carried my wounds everywhere I went, covering up with a smile and pills when I was around people and with too many drinks when I was alone.
When I couldn’t cover it up any longer, my sister told me about Freedom Session. I felt humiliated as I signed up. Here I was, a Christian, entering the doors of a recovery program. I worried that I would be judged for struggling like everyone else.
Guess what? We were all Christians, and we were all struggling.
Freedom Session is a twelve-step program based on Christ and His promises, and it’s hard work! It is much easier to live the lives we are used to—destructive and unfulfilling as they might be—than to live examined lives, inviting God’s light to invade dark areas of our past and show us what needs to change.
We identified our “drugs of choice,” things or behaviours we run to when life gets hard—food, affirmation of others, alcohol, sexual indulgence, work, performance, TV, hobbies—and learned how to run to God instead. As Jesus begins to heal us, destructive habits become less attractive. Shame loses its grip, and lies we believed for so long are replaced by the truth.
God used Freedom Session to help me understand why I was allowing my past to still hurt me in my present. It gave me a safe place to share, be challenged, be encouraged, be held accountable, and finally to be healed.
Best of all, now that I have turned my pain over to Christ, I have discovered the joy of removing my masks of happiness and peace and replacing them with a real happiness and peace that come from living the abundant life that God has promised to those who love Him.
Jesus came that we might have life and have it abundantly. Why settle for less?
• Invisible Illness – Stepping out of the shadow of shame
• From a Bottle to a Bible – Healing from lifelong trauma
• The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die – Taking her last chance to live
• Becoming a Beacon in the Darkness - How a church family can be a sanctuary of hope and help for people suffering from mental illness
• Hope Shatters the Darkness - Choosing to seek help and support for your mental illness in Christian community
• The Joy of the Lord
Lois Wilson is the office manager at Aldergrove Alliance Church, BC
more stories by Lois Wilson