Read Beauty for ashes: receiving emotional healing Online

Authors: Joyce Meyer

Tags: #Religion, #Christian Life - General, #Christian Life, #Christian Theology, #Spiritual Growth, #Family & Relationships, #Religious life, #General, #Child abuse, #Adult child sexual abuse victims, #Meyer; Joyce, #Abuse, #Adult child sexual abuse victims - Religious life, #Spirituality

Beauty for ashes: receiving emotional healing

BOOK: Beauty for ashes: receiving emotional healing
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Beauty For Ashes:Receiving Emotional Healing

Joyce Meyer

Many people seem to have it all together outwardly, but inside they are a wreck. Their past has broken, crushed, and wounded them inwardly. They can be healed. God has a plan, and Isaiah 61 reveals that the Lord came to heal the brokenhearted. He wants to heal victims of abuse and emotional wounding.Joyce Meyer is a victim of the physical, mental, emotional, and sexual abuse she suffered as a child. Yet today she has a nationwide ministry of emotional healing to others like herself. In BEAUTY FOR ASHES she outlines major truths that brought healing in her life and describes how other victims of abuse can also experience God's healing in their lives. You will learn:

how to deal with the emotional pain of abuse

. how to understand your responsibility to god for overcoming abuse

. why victims of abuse often suffer from other addictive behaviors

how to grab hold of god's unconditional love

. The importance of God's timing in working through painful memories.

JOYCE MEYER suffered for thirty-three years the devastating effects of abuse. Now God has exchanged her ashes for beauty and called her to help others allow Him to do the same for them.

Cover Design by UDG Design Works Cover Photo by Johner/Photonica

Visit our Web site at www.twbookmark.com

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IntroductionIf your joy is hindered because of emotional pain, if you have been abused or have suffered from feelings of rejection, I encourage you to read this book. If you have ever listened to my radio or television broadcasts, you have heard me speak of the fact that I was abused throughout my childhood and teenage years. In fact, my life was like a heap of ashes before I met the

Lord and was set free by the truth of His Word.

This is not a story of all the unpleasant details of my own past, but I do share enough about my earlier life to let you know that I understand what it means to feel hopeless and unloved. Years ago, God inspired me to share these truths in order to help set free other people who are in similar situations. Since the first release of this book, I have continued to hear from thousands of people who share that they need prayer and teaching in order to walk victoriously in the life God has planned for them. They testify that this book has helped them greatly.

Recently, the Lord encouraged me to expand the teaching in this book to further develop a solid foundation for people who are ready to let go of their past and to move on to the beautiful life God wants them to enjoy. Based on my own experiences, and the extensive studies I have done on behavioral addictions caused by abuse, I share how God's love will override negative results from past abuse. I also share insight on

viiixINTRODUCTION

the two kinds of pain that an abused person must face, the pain of change or the pain of staying the same, and six steps to achieve emotional healing.Running from the past does not lead to healing, so I identify several ways people run from the past so you can avoid delays in reaching your own victory. I will explain how to move forward through the doorways of pain that have become obstacles to the future.

If you need to let go of the past, and receive an inner strengthening from God that will enable you to trust others, develop and maintain intimate friendships, and enjoy your life again, then this book is for you. Once you begin, press on by reading through to the end of the book in order to reach the good news of the prize for which God has called you.

I know firsthand that God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. You can learn how to shake off trouble and receive a double recompense for all you have been through.

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PART ONEI Once Was Bound

Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and in irons, because they had rebelled against the words of God and spurned the counsel of the Most High.

Psalm 107:10

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Trophies Of GraceMany people appear to have their lives together outwardly, but inside they are emotional wrecks because they have been traumatized by abuse. A victim of trauma is someone who has been wounded physically or emotionally by some sudden or substantial shock that created severe and lasting damage to the psychological development of that individual.

Ibelieve there are many traumatized people in the world who have been so abused in the past that they are psychologically deficient; they are unable to function normally in everyday life. There are people who have been through such trauma that it severely jarred their emotions, because they endured something that was so awful it was unspeakable.

Surviving the trauma of abuse can throw people into a state of psychological damage that prohibits them from functioning properly in relationships with others. Such victims do not understand what is wrong with them, or how to get out of their destructive behavior patterns so they can live a normal life. That was my situation before I learned how to gain the victory over the trauma in my life.

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Through seeking God and reading His Word, I found that the Lord's main concern is our inner life, because that is where we enjoy His presence. Jesus said, "For behold, the kingdom of God iswithin you[in your hearts]andamong you [surrounding you]" (Luke 17:21, emphasis mine).This book is a summation of how God taught me to triumph through Christ over the tragedy of abuse in my life. AfterIhad spent many years preaching His Word, God led me to 2 Corinthians 2:14: "But thanks be to God, Who in Christ always leads us in triumph [as trophies of Christ's victory] and through us spreadsandmakes evident the fragrance of the knowledge of God everywhere."

One Thanksgiving morning, a spirit of thankfulness began to rise up within me as I considered all that God had done for me. He spoke to my heart that day and said to me, "Joyce, you are a trophy of My grace, and you are helping Me get other trophies." Then I had a vision of a display case in heaven, filled with trophies. I understood that when someone wins trophies, it is because that person is a champion at what he or she does. If people have baseball, golf, or bowling trophies displayed in their homes, it is obvious that they have spent a lot of time developing their skill in that particular area.

God is the Champion at bringing people from a place of destruction to a place of total victory. As they reach that place of victory they become trophies of His grace, and they are set on display as a fragrant reminder of God's goodness. I share my testimony in this book to help those who are still in the process of becoming a trophy for God.

Through both tragedies and triumphs, I have learned that Jesus is my King, and He wants to be yours, too. The kingdom He desires to reign over is our inner life-our mind, will, emotions, desires, and thoughts. The Word teaches clearly that "the kingdom of God is not a matter of [getting the] food and drink [one likes], but instead it is righteousness (that state

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which makes a person acceptable to God) and [heart] peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. He who serves Christ in this way is acceptableandpleasing to God and is approved by men" (Romans 14:17-18).In other words, if God's kingdom rules within us, we will enjoy righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. We will also be acceptable to God and approved by men. Jesus said that we should not worry about external things, such as food and clothes, but that we should "seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given [us] besides" (Matthew 6:33).

Before all else, we are to seek the kingdom of God,which is within us,and then all of our external concerns will be taken care of. When we accept Jesus as our Lord, He rules our inner life and brings with Him righteousness, peace, and joy. No matter what difficulties or trials we may experience in our outward life, if we are whole inside, we will not only survive, we will enjoy our lives.

Our inner life with God is much more important than our outer life. Therefore, emotional healing, which I also refer to as inner healing, is a subject that needs to be discussed in a scriptural, balanced way that produces godly results. The apostle Paul said that we can be "assured that He Who raised up the Lord Jesus will raise us up also with Jesus and bring us . . . into His presence" (2 Corinthians 4:14). In verses 1618 he continued:

Therefore we do not become discouraged (utterly spiritless, exhausted, and wearied out through fear). Though our outer man is [progressively] decayingandwasting away, yet our inner self is being [progressively] renewed day after day.

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For our light, momentary affliction (this slight distress of the passing hour) is ever more and more abundantly preparingandproducingandachieving for us an everlasting weight of glory [beyond all measure, excessively surpassing all comparisons and all calculations, a vast and transcendent glory and blessedness never to cease!],Since we considerandlook not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen; for the things that are visible are temporal (brief and fleeting), but the things that are invisible are deathlessandeverlasting.

Everyone is subject to what Paul called, "momentary afflictions," and some of us have suffered what seemed at the time to be unbearable, emotional pain. But Jesus came "to announce release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed [who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity]" (Luke 4:18-19).

The King James Version of verse 18 says that Jesus said He came "to heal the brokenhearted." According toStrong's Exhaustive Concordance,the word translatedbrokenheartedin this verse is a combination of two Greek words,kardia,meaning simply"heart,"1andsuntribo {soon-tree'-bo),which means "tocrush completely,i.e. toshatter . . .break (in pieces), broken to shivers . . . , bruise."21 believe Jesus came to heal those who are broken inside-those who are crushed and woundedinwardly.

If you have been traumatized by abuse, it is my hope that this book will serve as a road map to get from the ashes of devastation to the beauty of health and wholeness in your inner self. I pray that you will find this message to be simple, clear, and powerful, and that the Holy Spirit will enable you to follow Him to your destination of peace and joy.

My prayer for you is paraphrased from Ephesians 3:16:

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I pray that you will be strengthened in the inner man through the power of the Holy Spirit and that He will indwell your innermost being and personality.I also encourage you to always remember God's promise, found in Hebrews 13:5-6:

For He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail younorgive you upnorleave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helplessnorforsakenorlet [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]

So we take comfortandare encouragedandconfidentlyandboldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?

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The Ashes of AbuseI believe that most people are abused in one way or another during their lifetime. Almost every person can remember a time when he felt mistreated. I also believe there are multitudes of people who have been severely traumatized by the abuse that has been inflicted upon them.

Some of the definitions of the verb abuse are: "to put to a wrong or improper use"; "deceive"; "to use so as to injure or damage: maltreat"; "to attack in words: revile." Definitions for the noun abuse include: "a corrupt practice or custom"; "improper or excessive use or treatment: misuse"; "a deceitful act: deception"; "language that condemns or vilifies . . . unjustly, intemperately, and angrily"; "physical maltreatment."3

Some common forms of abuse are: physical, verbal, mental, emotional, and sexual. Any form of ongoing abuse can produce a root of rejection in the individual who has been mistreated, and this defensive sense of unworthiness can then cause major problems in the interpersonal relationships of that individual. Today we live in a society filled with people who do not know how to get along with other people; even

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though the abuse in their lives has stopped, the residue of trauma continues to affect their ability to relate to others.God created us for love and acceptance, but the devil works hard to keep us feeling rejected because he knows that a lack of self-worth and root feelings of rejection injure individuals, families, and friendships.

The above-mentioned types of abuse-whether they take the form of broken relationships, abandonment, divorce, false accusations, exclusion from groups, dislike by teachers and other authority figures, ridicule by peers-or any one of hundreds of other such hurtful actions-can and do cause emotional wounds that can hinder people in their efforts to maintain healthy, lasting relationships.

Have You Been Abused?

If you have been treated wrongly or improperly, it can deeply affect your emotional state. But to be healed of the pain of abuse, you mustwantto get well.

One of my favorite passages of scriptures (but a startling one) is John, chapter 5. In verse 5, Jesus is described as seeing a man lying by the pool of Bethesda who had been sick with a deep-seated and lingering disease for thirty-eight years. Knowing how long this poor man had been in that terrible condition, Jesus asked him, "Do you want to become well? [Are you really in earnest about getting well?]" (v. 6).

BOOK: Beauty for ashes: receiving emotional healing
8.19Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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