Repairing my torn heart with Psalms

Lily of the valley
Lily of the valley

My heart was torn between two homes as a child of divorce.  But with time and grace, God gave me healing through these verses:

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.  Psalm 34:18 NIV

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  Psalm 147:3 NIV

God knew my heart was broken in half by my parents’ divorce.  He drew close to my broken heart.  He knew how difficult it was for me to go back and forth between two households.  He saw the unfairness and lack of love.  He knew my loneliness and frustration.  He was with me when I withdrew into private worlds to escape the pain.  He heard my cries and allowed me to freely express my hurts through prayer.  Even as a child, I sensed God’s presence and unconditional love within my struggles.

My Heavenly Father saved me when I was crushed in spirit.  Right before my darkest depression in high school, I had a spiritual rebirth experience.  God upheld me through my valleys, and I will write about those experiences in future posts this summer.

He healed me and bound up my wounds through counseling.  As an adult, I explored the sources of my pain in counseling sessions.  God showed me how to forgive others who caused pain that wasn’t my fault.  He showed me how to forgive myself for self-inflicted wounds.  The process of forgiveness took many years. I wrote out the hurts, cried over the losses, accepted that I can’t change the past, and let the hurts go.  The hurts are part of my story, but they don’t burden me as they did in the past.

Through counseling I learned new ways to process pain.  I had to stop my cycles of self-condemnation and self-destruction.  I had to change the way I talk to myself in my head.  I had to recognize anger as a good sign that something is wrong and needs attention; I can’t afford to bury anger any longer, as it turns into depression.  I had to reach out for help rather than withdraw when I felt overwhelmed with pain.  I had to learn that I can’t control painful situations, but I can control my thoughts and responses.

God gave me healing with my own home and my own family.  I work hard to create the home I didn’t have as a child:  a home of security, stability, and nurture.  My primary motivation in pushing through our marriage struggles is to spare our children the hurt my husband and I experienced as children of divorce.  In that way, God has used my wounds to stop another cycle of brokenness.  He gives me new life and hope within my own family.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise you because you draw close to me in my pain.  You care about my heart, so you provide healing.  Thank you for binding up my wounds with your word and with the help of friends and counselors.  Help me create a home filled with hope in you.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Reflection

How has God healed the broken places in your heart?  How has he bound up your wounds?

Other posts in this series

Daddy’s house, 1986

Torn between two homes: Visits to Daddy’s house

 

Next week’s series:  Withdrawal

 

Photo and text copyright 2016 Sarah Geringer

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