After our two year old daughter died, some mornings when I woke up I would forget momentarily about our loss. I would quickly be jolted back to reality when I saw the empty space in the corner of our bedroom where her baby listening monitor used to sit. That sight had the power to send me into a spin.
I would remember my little girl lying unwell on my tummy in the middle of the night. I would think of my fear as her sweet frame snuggled close to mine. Soon I would be back in that horrible place of panic, not knowing what to do.
OBJECTS OF DREAD
Memories can become objects of dread. We can be afraid of looking back at what happened because we don’t want to feel the pain again. We have rooms in our hearts that we dare not enter because the contents are too painful.
When something opens the door, we turn our faces away so that we don’t have to witness the sight or feel the pain again. We think that by avoiding those memories, we are helping ourselves stay strong.
The problem is that if you avoid your memories, they retain power over you, and the enemy can use them to trip you up whenever he chooses. We can end up being just as afraid of painful memories as we might be of spiders or public humiliation.
You may be doing well, but if someone who reminds you of your past shows up, you shut down. As soon as you encounter a reminder of hurtful behavior, walls go up. Perhaps you’re afraid of history repeating itself. If so, you need to be free. Here’s how:
1. DON’T RUN AWAY
Fear loses its power when we stop running, turn around & look back at what happened. Next time someone or something opens the door to that room or those rooms in your heart, don’t turn away and don’t run away. Stop for a moment and look back.
2. GET INTO GOD’S PRESENCE
Pull yourself away from people (even if that means escaping to the bathroom!) and bring that memory to your Heavenly Father. Tell Him what happened and how it hurts. Ecc 11:10 says, “Remove sorrow from your heart.” We remove pain by pouring out our hearts in prayer. Face your fear with the Lord by your side and ask Him to heal you.
3. DEFEAT YOUR GIANTS
People who once hurt us can become giants in our minds. There may be someone whose name makes you pull back. When you see their number flash up on your phone, your stomach turns. Your “giant” might not be a person, it could even be a place.
It’s time to face your “giant” in prayer. First, look at what used to make you turn away. If it’s a person, forgive them. Second, while you look, calmly rebuke the spirit of fear (Js 4:7) & let the enemy know you’re no longer afraid. Finally, let God’s peace fill your heart.
I was afraid of history repeating itself until I faced my fears. I decided to never run from the past again. I brought every painful picture to Jesus and told Him how much they hurt. I asked Him to heal my heart. Memories were no longer a source of dread and denial. They now became an opportunity to get more restored.
If you want a fresh touch of God’s Spirit to kick start 2020, book for REFRESH (London – 25th Jan | Miami – Feb 8th). God will move in an amazing way! If you can’t reach us, start the year with 30 Day Detox for Your Soul or one of our other books.