Inner Healing for Broken Vessels

By EXW Staff
May 22, 2011

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By Pastor Aritha Tomlinson

“ …From the least even to the greatest everyone is given to covetousness; from the prophet even to the priest everyone deals falsely. For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, Saying, 'Peace, peace!' When there is no peace. Jer. 8:10-11 NKJV

When God spoke these words through the Prophet Jeremiah, He was concerned that the needs of the daughters of Zion were being ignored. They were given a false sense of security and led to believe that everything was OK. It was as if they put a Band Aid on a gaping wound that required stitches. In other words, they masked the hurt and pain so they would not have to confront it.

I remember the many times as a child when I fell and scraped my knee, my mother would give me TLC (tender, love and care) and put a Band-Aid on the wound. This was always a problem for me because the Band-Aid would never stay on! We discover overtime, a bandage serves a purpose directly after one is wounded; however, the purpose is usually short lived. Bandages are used to stop the bleeding or to prevent infections when the wound is open. When the bleeding stopped, or when a scab appeared, Mama would say, "take the bandage off so the air can hit it." And sure enough, in the process of time, when the bandage was taken off healing occurred.

Many times, broken vessels continue to reach for Band Aids. We continue to apply superficial healing to the wounds of neglect, child abuse, molestation, rape, low self esteem, depression, racism, addictions, abortion, domestic violence, divorce, etc., etc., etc. We tell ourselves that everything is all right. We speak peace to ourselves, in the name of Jesus, but healing will never be ours until the Band Aid is taken off and we go through the process of inner healing.

I am being transparent, sharing out my experience, in hopes that it will catapult you on your journey to inner healing. My life is a testimony. As Paul writes in 1 Cor 15:10-11, I am what I am by the grace of God and His grace towards me was not in vain. It is His grace that constrains me to provoke you on your journey to inner healing. I am more than a conqueror, through Christ who strengthens me, having overcome many emotional, mental and physical wounds.

Healing did not come for me until I got sick and tired of being sick and tired. First and foremost, healing came when I took the focus off my problems and began to focus on the problem solver, MY Jesus! Healing came when I took responsibility for my own actions, broke the silence, and reclaimed responsibility for my own life. Healing came when I began to set healthy boundaries. Healing came when I took back the control over my life that I had willingly given over to others. Sometimes we give control to others so that we don’t have to take responsibility for our decisions. After all, when things don’t work out as we expect, we always have someone to blame.

Why is inner healing so important? Because the Word says that what's inside will eventually overflow -- as a man think in his heart…. so is he (Prov. 23:7). We’re told to guard our heart and mind because out of it flows the issues of life (Prov 4:23). Inner healing is important because, women set the atmosphere in the home, simply because most of us spend more time there.

The effects of abuse are many and varied. Some of the symptoms may include the following: depression and anxiety, dissociation or denial, guilt and shame, self-contempt, powerlessness and betrayal, ambivalence and feeling crazy to physical ailments. After wounds heal, the scar tissue which remains will often trigger emotional responses, which takes one back to the original event. That’s why it’s so important that we are not led by our emotions or how we feel. It’s a natural reflex for a mother that has been sexual abused as a child to be overly protective of her children because she carries into adulthood emotional cargo resulting from the abuse. Consequently, the lives of her children are fashioned with the scar tissue of her past. She passes on to her children her distrust, low self esteem, guilt, etc. Children that are abused often grow up to be abusers. Children of alcoholics usually become alcoholics or become involved in codependent relationships. Statistics show that most sexual predators have suffered some type of sexual abuse as children. We need to get healed so that we sow seeds of healing and reconciliation within our sphere of influence.

I believe the key to Inner healing is found in Psalms 51:6, God desires truth in the inward parts and in the hidden part He gives us wisdom. When we break the enemy of silence and cry out to the only one that can heal emotional wounds, Jesus, we are healed. I believe the wisdom that we receive in the hidden part is a new way of thinking about our situation. Often times, God does not change our situation; He changes our perception of the situation. When we see things differently we act differently!

When I was manager of the bookstore at my church I built relationships with many of my customers. One of my favorite customers came into the bookstore one Sunday morning looking for a book for singles. While there were several books available, they did not meet her needs because people who were ‘happily’ married were the writers. What she was looking for was someone who was going through the struggles that she was going to. She wanted someone who could speak to those ‘right now’ issues that she encountered daily. There’s a lot of truth in that; no one can tell a single woman’s story better than a single woman. Once we’ve been set free from our issues of life, we are better able to comfort others with the comfort we have received (2 Cor. 1:3).

So having been set free from my issues of life, my testimony is, I overcame by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of my testimony! It all began when I began to look at Aritha through the eyes of the Creator. My healing began when I started to accept Aritha, with her many faults and imperfections, as one chosen by God, signed, sealed, and seated as it says in Ephesians Chapter 1, before the foundation of time! When I got a hold of that, I was armed and extremely dangerous. Think about it, we have been accepted by the Numero Uno Inspector before we were given a life to mess up!

Some time ago during a staff meeting, we were brainstorming about the best teaching method to building relationships. We all threw out different thoughts and perspectives, but one of the elders stuck with one thought. No matter where we tried to go he would bring us back to the same point: You have to know who you are in Christ! Until we know that, we can’t even relate to ourselves. That understanding, my friend, is not only the beginning of wisdom; it is the beginning of healing for you. Only a loving and compassionate God can heal the wounds of the past and He can only do that when we are yielded, submitted and willing to give Him our messed up life.

Here's where we start?
- Forgive yourself and those that have wounded you and those whom you have wounded (Matt 6:14-15).
- Feed your spirit positive affirmations from the Word of God. Some of my favorites are Psalms 91; 139:14; Jer. 29:11; Rom. 8: 28-39 and Eph 1. - Read self-help books. Two books that really impacted my life were How to Win Over Depression by Tim LaHaye and the Bondage Breaker by Neil Anderson. Other good books are Inner Healing for Broken Vessels by Linda H. Hollis and Healing for Damaged Emotions by David A. Seamands.
- Get involved in a Bible Study; support group or prayer circle.

Luke writes of a woman that suffered with an issue of blood for twelve years (Luke 9). Although she had exhausted all of her money going from one doctor to another, she didn’t get any better. In fact, she got worse. She heard about a man name Jesus who was healing all manner of sickness and disease. Having nothing to lose and everything to gain, she decided to seek Him out for herself. My friends, she was sick and tired of being, sick and tired! Luke writes that she came up behind Jesus and touched the hem of His garment and immediately she was healed (iaomai, which means cured or healed). Jesus knew that someone was healed because He felt the power leave His body.

Realizing that she had received only a physical or slight healing, Jesus gave her an opportunity to be completely healed. He turned and said, “Who touched me?” She broke the silence and reclaimed responsibility for her life, breaking through the self imposed barriers of her self doubt. Can you imagine what that did for her self -esteem? No doubt the Pharisees and the teachers of the law wanted to stone her for touching a Rabbi in her condition. But Jesus was not offended. He reached out to her with love and compassion. He responded that she was healed or made whole, (sozo, which means healing: body, soul and spirit) by her faith. He restored her self-respect, healed the shame of the past twelve years in a second and she began to live again, in Him! Take the Band Aids off of the wounds, my sister’s; don’t settle for a slight healing, go for the gusto. Jesus wants you to experience the abundant life!

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