Sunday, October 27, 2002
HEALING OF CHILDHOOD MEMORIES
Kartargeo- to put away childish things.
KARTARGEO- strong Greek Verb: to " to put away, to render inoperative, inactive, or powerless, to remove the meaning and significance from, to cause a person to be free from something that has been binding them."
In 1991 I was laid off three times - unemployed for half the year. Last year at this time I was laid off for six months, again. Tomorrow morning I am going into work to be laid off. Praise God, I am called to be a carpenter. I think that the LORD allows some things to happen in my life to heal me of my feelings of rejection from my childhood.
Early this morning, picking up a book, I happened on some passages about Jesus being unconstricted by time and space, and letting Him walk back through your childhood memories with you.
From, HEALING YOUR HEART OF PAINFUL EMOTIONS, by David A. Seamans,
ISBN 0-88486-080-9, pages 137-142.
"...Often what is required is prayer for the healing of memories--the healing of that little child or teenager who underwent certain experiences which made him stop growing, experiences which imprisoned him, froze him at one stage in his growth. All those memories need to be offered to God in a prayer for healing, so that the person can be freed from his pain and compulsion.
You may ask, "What happens then? Will he no longer remember? Will the memories be erased?" Certainly not! But the power of the emotions which surround those memories--the sting, the pain, the fear, the hate, the hurt, the lust--will be broken. As we KATARGEO them, they will lose their propulsive significance. They will be devitalized, no longer effective and operative in the adult life.
Someone asks, "How is this possible? After all, those childhood experiences are gone. They took place many, many years ago. How can our prayers today possibly affect that inner child of the long-ago past? It doesn't make sense."
To which I reply, in the words of Jesus, "You are mistaken, not understanding the Scriptures, or the power of God" (Matthew 22:29).
For you see, Scripture over and over again emphasizes that Jesus Christ transcends time. "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, yes and forever" (Hebrews 13:8). John the Baptist, talking about Jesus, said, "Here is the One I was speaking about when I said that although He would come after me He would always be in front of me; for He existed before I was born!" John 1:15, PH). The Jews mockingly said to Jesus one day, 'You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?' Jesus said to them,'Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am'" John 8:57-58, Rev).
Jesus of Nazareth Is The Everlasting Christ Who Broke Through The Time Barrier And Entered History.
He lived within our time for thirty three earthly years. But time is a finite concept. It is the way you and I experience reality--in pieces, in parts. We divide time into past, present, and future. But Christ transcends all of time. "Even from everlasting to everlasting, Thou art God ... for a thousand years in Thy sight are like yesterday when it passes by" (Psalm 90:2, 4).
Thus our Lord is not restricted by time. He is our eternal contemporary who can walk back through time to minister to that hurting little child. Jesus can gather him into His loving arms, comforting and loving that child who so desperately wanted to be loved but never was. He can understand that little child who so intensely sought to be understood, but never was. He can reassure that child with the unconditional, accepting love he so acutely needed but never experienced. He can forgive that guilty, shame-filled little child the way he so deeply wanted to be forgiven back then, encouraging him and replacing the feelings of condemnation and dirtiness with virtue and cleanness. Yes, Jesus, the tender and everlasting Shepherd, can gather the lambs into His arms and heal their tormented, thorn-filled memories.
My experience is that the inner child of the past which most needs healing is usually one of four kinds: he is the hurting child, the hating child, the humiliated child, or the horrified child. The memories that seem to grip and grind us, that have an almost hypnotic sway and power over us, are memories of deep emotional pain, resentment, hate, fear, or embarrassment. Sometimes it is a terrible mixture of all these.
With increasing frequency, some form of sexual abuse is mingled with the memories --violation, homosexuality, betrayal, or incest. And so some people, who in their present lives are very sincere Christians, experience a near hypnotic, propulsive, and compulsive lust in their lives. .....
I want to share some experiences I have had with people, in prayer for the healing of the memories. Mike was a committed Christian, a leader among youth, a dedicated Sunday School teacher who was much loved by all his students. Yet he had a deep inner struggle in his spiritual life, for he could never quite believe that God loved him. Every once in a while, strong feelings of rage, bitterness, and lust would get hold of Mike. These would be followed by guilt, depression, and a feeling that God had forsaken him and was far away.
We counseled together several times and tried all the ordinary ways of praying, but there was no real deliverance. So one day I explained to Mike the concept of the healing of memories. I loaned him some books and tapes and asked him to write down the most troublesome and hurtful memories which came to mind as he read and listened.
Finally, when I thought he was ready for this special time of prayer, we met for an undisturbed and unhurried time of openness to the Holy Spirit. We entered into an open, conversational kind of prayer in which we just talked to each other and to God, remembering that He was right there in the room.
As we did this, several pictures arose in Mike's mind, one of which was a very binding, grinding, and searing scene. This memory was central to his childhood, so dominant that he still had repeated nightmares about the event. Mike's father was well-meaning and sincere, but a very harsh disciplinarian. To punish Mike whenever he did any childish wrong, his father would shut him up inside a little room in the barn. There he would strap him severely until Mike was screaming for mercy, crying for his mother and his brothers and sisters to come and let him out. He'd run for the door of the barn, but his father would get there first and stand at the door barring the way. He would then order Mike, "Say you're sorry." He would repeat this over and over again, until the hysterical little boy would finally say he was sorry. Then his father would force Mike to embrace and kiss him.
As we prayed together and as Mike began to bring this memory to the Lord in prayer, he started to relive the emotion of it! All the resentment, hurt, and terrifying fear came into his voice. I didn't know what to say or how to pray, so I just waited on the Spirit for guidance, asking Him to pray in me and through me.
All of a Sudden it Came to Me. As I Was Praying, I Saw Little Mike. We Were Confined Together in That Horrible Barn. And I Realized That Emotionally Mike Was Still in the Barn, That He Had Never Gotten Outside the Door. He Had Lived in That Barn for Fifteen Years Without Getting Around His Father and out of the Door. Inside Himself He Was Still Screaming, Still Hysterical with Fear, Still Burning with Rage.
When I began to pray, I believe it was in the spirit of Romans 8:26-27, where we are told the Holy Spirit Himself intercedes for us.
"Lord Jesus, we are in the barn together. Take this little boy in Your arms, dry his tears, quiet his fears, cleanse away his hate. But, O Lord, above all, open the door and let him out."
When I said that, he began to sob uncontrollably. I continued. "Lord, Mike has never seen the blue sky. He has never lived in Your love and freedom. He is still locked in the barn. Open the door now, and let him out--set him free!"
While We Were Praying, it Happened. Jesus Rolled Back the Carpet of Time and Walked Right into That Barn. He Took Frightened Little Mike in His Arms and Comforted Him, Loved Him, and Healed Him. All the Scars and the Wounds Were Washed with the Balm of Gilead. Then We Saw the Door Opening and Jesus Taking That Frightened, Hurt, Hate-filled Lad out of the Barn and into the Clear Sky and Clean Air of God's Love.
I used to wonder along with Nicodemus who asked, "Can a man really be born all over again when he gets old?" New birth for young people we can understand--it seems much simpler for them. But let me tell you about Anne, a married woman in her middle forties, who came to see me after one of my meetings. She had several teenage children. Her marriage was about to break up because of her terrible inner conflicts and the way she was taking them out on her family. As we counseled together, I saw that she was a deeply sincere woman who had spent many hours praying about her problem. We talked several times and I loaned her some books to read. These helped her to open up and share with me many things she had never before talked about.
When I thought Anne was ready, we had our time of healing prayer together. She lifted up to God her awful childhood and teenage memories. She had an abusive alcoholic father who made sexual advances toward her, broke up the home, and then committed suicide.
We prayed for the deepest possible healing of those childhood memories and the cleansing of all her twisted emotions. Nothing seemed to happen when we prayed together. I didn't see her for about two weeks. Then she told me this most amazing story, and we knew God had answered our prayers.
It Happened this Way: about a Week after We Had Prayed, She Awoke Very Early One Morning. She Couldn't Get Back to Sleep, So She Lay in Bed and Began to Pray. Christ Himself Came into the Bedroom, Called Her and Said, "Come, Anne, Take My Hand. I Want Us to Walk Back Through Your Life."
"Lord, I Couldn't Stand it Again. It Was So Hard When I Told the Pastor."
"Anne, this Time Is Going to Be Different. I Am Going to Be with You Each Step of the Way."
Anne Then Described That Walk with Jesus in a Most Unusual Fashion. The Two of Them Were in a Great Art Gallery Where Each Painful Incident Was a Picture on the Wall. As Jesus Led Her They Would Stand Before Each Vivid Memory, like Looking at a Painting. And as She Looked at Them One by One, All the Original Emotions She Had Experienced Swept over Her. Once More She Relived the Fear, the Pain, the Shame, and the Rage Connected with Those Ghastly Memories Each Time She Would Weep Bitter Tears and Each Time an Inner Voice Would Say,
"My Child, Just Turn it over to Me; Forgive Everyone Involved and Receive Forgiveness for Your Own Hate and Rage." as She Surrendered Each Memory to the Lord, Jesus Reached up and Took down That Particular Picture.
This Went on for Several Hours until Finally, When She Looked Around, All the Pictures Had Been Taken down and the Walls of Her Mind Were Clean and Whole. The Scalding Bitterness and the Poisonous Fangs Had Been Removed from Those Destructive Memories.
And finally friends, the real basis of our healing:
He Has Forgiven You All Your Sins: Christ Has Utterly Wiped out the Damning Evidence of Broken Laws and Commandments Which Always Hung over Our Heads, and Has Completely Annulled it by Nailing it over His Own Head on the Cross. And Then, Having Drawn the Sting of All the Powers Ranged Against Us, He Exposed Them, Shattered, Empty and Defeated, in His Final Glorious Triumphant Act!
Colossians 2: 13-15 JB Phillips Translation
Paul PhillipsEmail: [email protected]
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