I love the changing seasons, and fall is absolutely beautiful here in Tennessee. At times, it can feel like a slower season. The leaves slowly trickle to the ground as they fall from the trees. The days grow shorter and colder as nature prepares for a long slumber.

Fall is also a rather busy season. I was looking out my office window watching the squirrels leaping and bounding across the property. They were each in a hurry to gather and bury as many nuts as possible before winter sets in. It can be rather calming and comical watching a squirrel running with a huge nut in his mouth. I watched one of them come to a stop. He looked around for a minute and began to bury the nut he had been carrying. He dug his hole as quickly as possible so no one could find his honey hole. I could imagine him thinking, “I gotta get this thing buried quickly so no one can see where I’ve hidden it.”

The Hurts We Bury

Isn’t it sometimes human nature to bury and hide things from people? We try to put on a front where everything is perfect in our lives when, in reality, we have buried some things so deeply that we may have forgotten about them. And then one day, out of the blue, something begins to surface. That thing that we buried in hopes of forgetting is back, and because we didn’t work through that thing with the Lord’s help, we now find ourselves struggling. It is hard to face difficult things, and sometimes in the moment when we are overwhelmed, it feels like the easiest thing to do is bury it. But like Mercy’s Founder and President, Nancy Alcorn, often says, “If we don’t deal with our issues, they will eventually deal with us.”

Key 3 in our Keys to Freedom study is titled “Healing Life’s Hurts.” In day one of this teaching, it reads:

Every one of us experiences hurt. When those hurts remain unhealed, they can cause us to shrink back from life, to operate out of fear, and to build our lives around, avoiding more hurt. We take fewer healthy risks in relationships, jobs, and ministry. Some people have been so hurt in the past that they sabotage relationships because they don’t think they deserve them. Others who have been hurt by abandonment or loss will cling to friends and loved ones too tightly or accuse those around them of not being faithful enough. Any person who has an unhealed hurt will find their decision-making negatively impacted. 

In Psalm 142, David cries out to the Lord because he understood that only God could help him in his time of need because God is sovereign and understood what he was feeling. Because Jesus is all-knowing, He can speak truth into those areas where we are hurting because He sees us and wants to help us. He wants to bring healing to those areas where we are broken and hurting.

The Hurts We Carry

Healing from past hurts is a process. While I wish we could just snap our fingers to make the hurt and pain go away, it is not an option. Facing the hurts we’ve buried can be painful, but carrying them with us like useless baggage that weighs us down, is also painful. As stated in our Keys to Freedom study, “By holding on to your pain, you are denying the Lord the opportunity to comfort you and take that heavy burden from you. If you don’t take that set to come to Him, He can’t give you the rest and healing that he has from you.

Jesus says in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” He is asking us to come to Him. He understands that in this life, we will become weary and burdened, but rest and healing come from Him. However, it is up to us to take that first step towards asking Him to heal our hearts.

Maybe it’s time for you to start digging up some of the things you have buried in your past that’s causing you to feel like you are trapped and in bondage. The Lord wants to walk through these things with you, but you may also need a mentor, pastor, or licensed counselor who is also a Christian to help you with any deep wounds you may have. It won’t be easy, but the freedom you will find on the other side will be worth it, and your relationship with the Lord will be stronger.

God wants to HEAL your hurts

Our Keys to Freedom study is also a great resource to help you start working through some things you may be carrying. I recently went through it myself, and the Lord revealed something that I had been carrying with me since high school. HIGH SCHOOL! At first, I thought it was so ridiculous that I had allowed this thing to impact my life for over 20 years, but I am so grateful that I took the time to talk to the Lord and ask Him what it meant and allowed Him to show me how this one thing had impacted me for literally decades. And then, after spending that time with the Lord working through this, I finally let it go. I remember feeling a physical sign of relief when I finally released it completely to Him. He wants you to experience that same relief and freedom today.

Joshua 1:9 says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” The Lord has promised you and me that He is always with us. He will be with you every step of the way as you face those hurts you have buried, and He will give you everything you need to move forward and release those things to Him. Maybe now is the time for you to be strong and courageous. What do you have to lose?

Mercy Multiplied is a free-of-charge residential counseling program that helps young women ages 13-32 break free from life-controlling issues and situations. Apply today or learn more by visiting MercyMultiplied.com.

Want more? Listen to our MercyTalk Podcast episode “Healing Life’s Hurts” for more practical tips. For daily inspiration, follow us @MercyMultiplied on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter