I’ve had a tough but good weekend. Tough in that I’ve been feeling very lonely, sad, challenged, trialled… and… I’ve probably grown a lot too!
Let me explain some stuff about me. I have symptoms that are like attachment disorder. That means that the bond between me and my mother probably didn’t form correctly. So I’ve always struggled to connect to people. Kinda makes sense that if you don’t connect as a baby, then you can’t connect as a teen or adult right?
Loneliness and confusion
If you can’t connect emotionally as a teen, just imagine the loneliness and confusion on a day to day basis. This is the normal situation for anyone who has attachment disorder. The person can marry but might not be able to connect to their partner. They can have a lovely home, clean and neat… but still not perform a father or mother role properly, because they can’t connect to their partner or their kids… simply because they don’t know how to connect.Life is very confusing when you don’t have access to your own emotions and you can’t understand the emotions of the person you’re talking to, dating or married to!
People generally have no idea of the struggle, so they react badly if you stare, or if you are too slow in responding (because you were trying to figure out what the heck is going on!). A girl can flirt with you and you’ll miss it entirely. It gets worse when you think she is flirting, but she wasn’t! heheheh.
So for a long long time I struggled to connect to people – but praise God it’s 99% better than it’s every been in my whole life.
Healing the emotions is like regularly getting a faster connection to the internet. Check it out:
- 15 years ago we used to have 2k modems. Back then we used to only have text, we switched website images off. Every website displayed slooooowly. Ugh.
- Then we upgraded to 19.9k modems. We began to surf faster, we turned the images turned on!
- Then up to 56.k modems and we all enjoyed the animated images.
- Pretty soon we figured out how to have TWO 56k modems and java and flash applets became all the rage.
- Then we got broadband. WOW! We could listen to voice and download very short movies!!
- After that came ADSL and stuff like skype and really great animations became normal. We begin to watch short movies online (but we’re still downloading the really big ones overnight).
- Then comes ADSL 2 and suddenly we are watching HD movies online and uploading OUR OWN videos to youtube.com
Healing the emotions is just like that. Every now and then, just when you thought you knew what the world is like, you get an upgrade in your heart… and you find out that people are deeper and more complex and kinder and more angry and more EMOTIONAL than you ever thought possible.
I got an upgrade this weekend
I honestly thought I was running at the highest upgrade possible – until this weekend. I got another upgrade.
I should have seen it coming. I had been “sensing” new experiences for a few weeks. Just flashes of insight that I had never had before. It’s like smelling a new flower as you walk past a garden bed. You stop and wonder what that lovely smell was. But you can’t smell it any more and you can’t find it either.
That’s what it’s like for a few weeks before an upgrade of my emotions. A sniff here. A smell there. And BAM. The upgrade.
Now I’m saddled with a bunch of emotions and feelings and deeper memories that I didn’t have before.
I can re-read books and bits that I just couldn’t understand before are now totally transparent to me. The lyrics of songs become “hearable” to me and I wonder how I never heard them before. I am able to re-think about very old memories and re-process them again, but with my new ability to understand… and so I am able to figure out what happened to me at a deeper level.
Out with the old, in with the new
So you can probably see why I don’t adjust to change well. If I’ve managed to attach to something, I don’t want to let it go… even if it’s unhealthy for me. And if I’ve let something go, I struggle terribly to accept new good things in my life… because I struggle to attach!
So… that was a lot of information huh? Anyway, as I said… I’m still moving into my new home. For several days I have been giving away old stuff. Cleaning out. Very painful to let go, but God definitely wants me to.
But I’m also refusing to buy new stuff – even though I know that God has provided for me to do it. This is a mistake. I have to attach to my life. I must make my life into something I enjoy. I must enjoy my home, bedroom and environment.
A few days ago I went to the store to buy new stuff. I saw lots of things I like, but then I’d find a reason not to buy it and put it back. In the end I left with nothing. I used to do this as a teenager. I’d go into a store to buy records (before CDs) and I’d come out with nothing.
Did Jesus have unbalanced/unhealthy teaching?
At home I dwelled on the verses where Jesus says “pay no attention to what you wear” etc. I’ve attended a church in the past which actually did teach that we should not buy clothes because it’s not important. To pay no attention to those needs… as if they are not real needs. Needless to say, that short sighted teaching fed right into my attachment disorder.
Was Jesus teaching that clothing was not important? That we should not acquire stuff? No! He then pointed to the lillies and said they are beautifully clothed. Jesus was saying that if God provides those beautiful clothes for the lillies then how much more will He provide beautiful clothes for us? MUCH MORE. Our heart must be set on Him AND He will assist us to have beautiful clothes.
In fact right before this He had just been saying that a person should not think that storing up immense riches will be their salvation. Luke 12:16-21
Jesus wasn’t anti nice things. He was teaching us to trust God! He said this to discourage us from JUST have beautiful clothing.
Remember: the lillies had beautiful clothing. It’s ok to have beautiful clothing… even if one day He might ask us to leave everything and follow Him. But even then, He will provide abundantly for your needs. So chill out… enjoy.
As He said, let’s find the balance – where we meet our needs:
And He said to them, Guard yourselves and keep free from all covetousness (the immoderate desire for wealth, the greedy longing to have more); for a man’s life does not consist in and is not derived from possessing overflowing abundance or that which is over and above his needs. – Luke 12:15
Handling messages of low self-worth
Anyway… so… today I went to the store DETERMINED to buy my new stuff, the stuff I need for my house… but inside me is this hidden message that I’m not worth it, or that I shouldn’t want things.
As I walked about trying to buy things, I had to speak strongly to myself, comforting myself, encouraging myself… reminding myself that I’m worth it, that it’s ok to want things, that I can do this… and so on. And I came home with a lovely arty thing for my wall and stacks of Christmas lights!!! Lights for here and there. Dreams and visions of things.
I have discovered that when someone doesn’t want anything, the best thing to do is to simply start with something that they DO want. I like Christmas lights. hehehe. So I’ll build out from there. Bit by bit growing more and more ownership of my own life until I’m expressing myself everywhere, throughout my life.
The value of sharing
I know, I know… this is weird to almost everyone, but it’s the real result of extensive damage in my life. I’m sharing it here because I see that many people are reading this blog (for example: What to do when you’re feeling empty inside) because they are hurt and struggling to make sense of it all. When a Christian blogger shares, then the reader doesn’t feel so alone, the reader gains hope that God can and does REALLY heal. It’s not just a vague hope but a reality.
The value of self-love
So I’m pushing through, taking greater and greater care of myself, learning to love and be loved and of course, getting to know God more and more. As I come into a love relationship with myself, it’s amazing how much more I have to offer people around me… and how much more I can actually see God’s love for me and His provision!
Oh and by the way… I’m totally enjoying my new church, loving the people and their kindness, really really enjoying being in the worship team… and more! It’s another form of love and it’s very healing.
Life is a challenge. Being an honest Christian is a challenge too. The whole thing with Ted Haggard has renewed my determination to stay out of leadership until I am clean and clear inside myself. His letter to his church is here, it’s quite honest I think.
But the last thing the world needs is yet another “wounded healer” driven by “faith”. Ugh. No. Let’s just look after ourselves FIRST. It’s not a “lack of faith” to say NO to leadership, because you want to have integrity in your life, because you want to get healing first!
I once was given a word for ALL the church leaders of the city I live in. I checked it with some prophets I know. They gave the thumbs up. I checked it with my mentors. Thumbs up. Gave it to my leadership. Thumbs up. I even happened to find that someone had a list of ALL the church leaders. The way seemed wide open to spread this word. This was my big break! Woooo! The big time!
But I declined to give this word to the leaders of the churches. I just couldn’t.
Why? Because I have unresolved issues in my life and I believe very strongly that it would be a complete lack of integrity to point at someone else (let alone at so many leaders) when I’m still dealing with my own stuff. It’s just not consistent with His character to ignore my issues while I’m pointing out someone else’s stuff.
Without a doubt, like Ted, someone would tear down the facade in my life and the outcome would have caused people to look less favorably on God. It’s a situation I won’t be involved in.
As I have mentioned, I recently moved churches. I’ve been wondering how to tell my pastors what I’m struggling with in my life. I wondered how they would take it. I don’t think they read my blog… so how would I explain the long term pain that I’ve faced in my life? Would they understand that when a person has pain, that person obviously has to seek a way to quieten that internal pain? That way might be drugs, sex, music, food, excessive sports, rave dancing or whatever else. Anything to alter the chemistry and silence the pain.
Would they judge me or support me? I wondered how it would happen. I wondered what to do. Twice I sat down and prepared to write a note to them, but I felt like God stopped me. Tonight the topic came up very naturally and comfortably and I spoke freely and openly about where I am at in my life. I love God and worship Him with ALL of me… but I’m still imperfect, still broken on the inside, still struggling.
Did they reject? No. Did they accept? For sure! And best of all they offered to help me get healing. I feel accepted, respected even. I am even more encouraged that I am in a church which is loving, kind and healing.
Getting to the heart of the matter
Someone asked me why we have to go through the pain of our old wounds to get free. While praying for healing for my stuff, He showed me this bible verse:
But whatever comes out of the mouth comes from the heart, and this is what makes a man unclean and defiles [him]. For out of the heart come evil thoughts (reasonings and disputings and designs) such as murder, adultery, sexual vice, theft, false witnessing, slander, and irreverent speech. These are what make a man unclean and defile [him]; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him unclean or defile [him]. – Matt 15:18-20
Clearly the problems I am struggling with comes out from my heart – and it defiles me. Therefore my heart needs healing. So it’s no surprise that as I ask for deliverance from my stuff, He delves deeper into my heart and reveals more of what hurt me and heals more of what’s inside me.
I am very thankful to You Lord God.
Keep on reading
Some Christians want God to snap His fingers and heal them and they refuse to get help. Is this the right approach? Maybe take a moment to read my post: Should Christians get counselling for healing?
For further reading maybe try this post Emotional healing… what’s it like? or read some of my other posts on healing. I have written a companion post that you might benefit from reading: How to fill up the lonely hurt inside. Get into the discussion. Share your experiences. Help someone. Receive help from someone too perhaps.
These posts might also help you:
and also try
- Heal your identity – it will help to fill the emptiness inside
- A vital step to health – thankfulness
- Seeing the truth, accepting, forgiving and recovering
Or try some other posts that I wrote:
- Why does the bible say to love yourself?
- God has a plan to prosper you… what to do while you wait
- Emotional healing… what’s it like?
These are posts about growing and forming deeper relationships that let us feel connected and warm inside:
- Creating deep intimacy (into-me-see) in relationships
- Fantasy stops us growing into adults
- He has written your name on the palm of His hand
- Why does the bible say to love yourself?
- God has a plan to prosper you… what to do while you wait
- Thank You Lord for a victory
- Emotional healing… what’s it like?
- Unrealistic expectations
- Healing the broken inner person
- Look after *you*
- God wants to heal *all* of us, not just part of us
- The $20 bill – you are valuable
- Get a life! Want things
- The desire to find our missing inner self (Imago – part 2)
- How we build an Imago – Part 1
God loves you!
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