Do you ever struggle to make the decision to let go of the past? If it wasn’t such a great thing ~ why continue to visit or, worse, camp out there? If something triggers a past hurt and it feels "bad" recognize that there are wounds that may cause you to walk with an emotional limp for a season, but the effect of the experience can change if you choose to allow it.  Truly when we can look back and laugh at our experiences, they have become our education.

The only way we can overcome our fear of being hurt again, is to recognize these fears are attached to us only as much as we are anchored to our past. We can face tomorrow because the ONE who led through the darkness is still here holding our hand every time the memory arises.  So, just like someone learning to walk again after a terrible accident, choose to simply get up, show up and do the best you can with what lies before you.

Once you allow the shackles that have anchored you to the past to fall off, they will no longer define you. We can grow stronger and better because of the things we’ve experienced and the lessons we’ve taken away.  At the end of the day, we may have a few scars, but all the wounds will heal.  Refuse to allow challenges to become excuses. Cease trying to control what you are unable to change and eliminate the excuses that prevent you from changing the things you can!

Embrace the Past, Then Release. The decision to cut anchors continually gives strength, confidence and drive to live life free and to the fullest.   This will probably be the best thing you ever do for yourself. It won’t bring national acclaim.  Someone looking may not be able to see it. But in the area of weight loss, internally, you’ll drop about a million pounds.
Being bound to the past with anchors from old hurts causes us to feel like we live in a minefield.   If a certain incident happens, it can trigger pain as real and as overwhelming as when the wound was brand new.  We feel powerless to be free.  It can result in our feeling controlled by others who have hurt us.  It weakens the resolve to live life above average.

To fully live out the peace and joy of life, we need to discover the ability to wake up and live and love like the experiences never happened. Yes! It is possible. We need the season of wandering in the desert in life to truly find the direction we needed to be headed in. The decision is simple. The difficulty is in waiting with little or no understanding for life experiences to bring us to a place where we “want to be free.”  We have to learn to let others ‘off the hook’ for hurting us.  We have to confront our own hearts and realize that we have hurt and wounded others, often unintentionally.  I have come to believe that most people have a good reason for doing what they do – even if I don’t understand their reasoning.

Avoid Allowing Issues to Fester
Refusing to let go or confront issues may result in bitterness and resentment. Bitterness is the awful bite of resentment that causes the soul of the person in which it resides to swell up in pain. Not properly dealt with, it can spread throughout the emotional system of the person and begin to harden their heart.  Bitterness is transmitted from person to person in the recounting -- retelling or rehearsing -- of an unpleasant experience, whether real or imagined.

In allowing this bitterness, we can push away the ones we want and need in our lives. We need people who are safe and responsible in our lives. They help us to grow and to gain value from things we need to face and deal with. Our life choices are the best gauge for whether or not we live joyful, enthusiastic and confident versus sad, depressed and anxious. We can be empowered to do life by design, as opposed to 'by default' and truly have a life of significance and purpose.

This happens best in a climate of being thankful to God even in circumstances we don’t understand, for teaching us that He always cares for us and we can depend on Him. Once we master these things, we will never again be shaken beyond what we recognize as something that He is working for good in our lives.

To gain this incredible breakthrough in life, make it a habit to spend quiet time daily in His presence through reading the Bible, an encouraging book or devotional, prayer, journaling or simply relaxing in a comfy place with a cup of coffee or tea.  It is the familiarity in life that brings comfort. Regular routine, special memories, good friends, favorite songs etc.  become our daily therapy to get re-focused during times we are tempted to cave in under stress.

In this time, I have found God to be the greatest counselor, coach, and therapist available at no charge to me.  The cost has been full surrender of my agenda.  The benefits have been a sense of purpose, fulfillment and confidence that each day, each decision, each encounter can bring meaning, vision and sustained change and healing to my life.

~ Sheri xo

PS. If you have enjoyed this post, please share with other fabulous women who are really to do Life-by-God's-Design!

Sheri Geyer is a Relationship Coach for Christian Women*

*And women seeking to learn more about a relationship with Jesus Christ! 

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