Wounded Spirits cause Physical Sickness
Wounded Spirits cause Physical Sickness
by Annette Capps
Wounded Spirits and Physical Sickness
Emotional wounds strike at the very heart of a person. Even strong and confident people who experience emotional upheaval can find themselves depressed and down in spirit. If you are like most people, you have had a “broken heart” at some time because of grief from the death of a loved one, loss of a pet, or divorce. Betrayal also can attempt to crush and break your spirit.
Long before medical science discovered that stress, trauma, and emotional pain affect the physical body, the Bible revealed the connection between the spirit or what we call the “heart” of a person. “A sound heart is the life of the flesh; but envy the rottenness of the bones.” (Proverbs 14:30)
When your heart is happy and healthy, it produces the energy of life into the cells of your body, but depression and discouragement saps the very life out of you. Attempting to get physical healing apart from the healing of the heart is like pouring water into a cup with a hole in the bottom. All the life force just continues to leak out. That is why the Bible teaches us to guard and protect our heart above everything else, “Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.” (Proverbs 4:23 CSB)
Yes, divorce, death, and losing your job or your house are all emotionally explosive situations that can bring a high risk of sickness. The same can be said for emotional loss or betrayal of any kind. The degree of distress depends on the perception of that person. As a result, what is devastating to one is only challenging to another.
Although you can receive some comfort and support from friends or counselors, the true source of all life and healing is in God and His Word. None of us are immune to emotional distress, but the realization that God is the true source of mental, emotional, and spiritual strength is the passageway to overcoming when hit by the blows intent on destruction. Health and strength can be the result rather than sickness.
“The strong spirit of a man sustains him in bodily pain or trouble, but a weak and broken spirit who can raise up or bear?” (Proverbs 18:14 AMPC)
Strength of spirit through the Holy Spirit and keeping your eyes on Jesus is the key to surviving and thriving after a broken spirit. Most of us have read the inspirational stories of those who were given up for dead through injury or illness and yet amazingly they survived. There is both a decision to live and a will to live that is required to keep life flowing. When I hear the words, “I just can’t live without…” or “I don’t want to be here if…” then I know that person has given up their power. It could be a spouse, a child, or some situation they don’t want to lose, but they have transferred the power of life and death to that person or circumstance.
It may sound loving to say you don’t want to live without something, but it is a trap. There is nothing more important than living out your days and accomplishing the will of God for your life. Not only is it important to guard your heart against hurt, disappointment, and discouragement, but guard against giving your power and devotion to something or someone other than God. “Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.” (Proverbs 4:23 CSB)
I don’t know about you, but I REALLY want to live in health! So, I pay attention to my heart and mind and guard against hurts, wounds, anger, and strife. It has taken me quite some time to learn how to guard it and practice what I have learned. I want to share some of what I learned with you.
Guard Your Spirit From the Attacks of People
When I first went into the ministry, it is a miracle that I was not destroyed. I did not know how to keep my walls up and repaired. I thought, “Here I am in the middle of God’s will, doing what I’m supposed to do. Therefore, everything should be wonderful. Everyone will love me. It is just wonderful being in the center of God’s will.”
I didn’t have my walls up to protect my spirit, and I took quite a bit of verbal abuse before I learned that everything was not so wonderful. My decision-making power had slipped and wasn’t exercised too well. After a meeting I would walk off the platform, excited about what God had done, and someone would say, “I don’t believe a word you said, and I don’t believe in women preachers. Don’t you know you are going to hell for preaching since you’re a woman?” (Thank God, that viewpoint has changed and today in many churches women are accepted as ministers.)
Even worse things than that were said, but I am not going to repeat them. I didn’t know what to say. I was not prepared. My walls weren’t up. I didn’t know how to deal with it. I knew it was not right, but all the joy of what God had done in that meeting was gone, and I went into deep depression over it. I was allowing other people to govern my emotions.
Don’t Let Others Take Over Your City
We can be ruled by other people. If your walls are down, people can march in and take over your city! It happened to me. I found that my entire life was being ruled by the opinions and criticisms of others. And because I didn’t have my gates and walls guarded, I fell into depression, discouragement, and defeat. My walls were down, and someone else took over my city.
I eventually learned with the help of the Holy Spirit to stop discouraging words from destroying me. I experienced freedom when I dealt with truth, and not the lies of the enemy. Everyone did not hate me, but there were some who disliked me intensely! It was liberating to realize that some people will like me and encourage me, and some people won’t. Once I learned this, I was prepared to deal with those who tried to knock holes in my walls.
Did you know that small holes get bigger as time goes along? The problem can start with just a little piece of mortar missing. But if you’re not diligent and don’t get that little hole repaired, it’s going to get bigger and bigger and bigger. People who have constant problems with depression started that cycle with a few holes in the wall. Then their gates and walls were knocked down by discouragement, and depression invaded their city. No gates are left, so they quit making decisions to reject negative thoughts.
Identify & Defuse Emotions
You need to exercise your decision-making ability until it’s strong, strong, strong. You can exercise it until, when someone says something discouraging to you, you will instantly compare it with the Word of God. Then you can say, “God did not say that about me; the Word didn’t say that about me; and Jesus doesn’t believe that about me. So I reject it!” And you can go on your way and never think about it again.
At first, it is like when you begin aerobics. Have you ever tried to do the exercises they show on television? About the time you have learned one move, they are doing something else! It takes muscle strength and coordination.
Exercising your decision-making ability is very similar. It takes daily practice. You may find yourself in the middle of the day feeling down and depressed. At the very moment you realize you are depressed, you must stop and say, “Why do I feel this way?”
Step One: “Why do I feel this way?”
Something has happened to cause this feeling. A thought entered your mind; an alien came past your walls into your city! If you feel depressed, there is an alien in your city. The minute you have that funny feeling, stop and say, “What thought came into my mind? What happened that caused me to have this feeling?” If you have a difficult time discerning the thoughts that caused your depression, ask the Holy Spirit to show you, and He will.
Step Two: “Holy Spirit, I ask for your help. Reveal to me the source of my feelings.”
I have found it is very helpful to ask yourself when you began to feel down and depressed. After locating the general time, recall any conversations that took place or incidents that were negative. It could have been a subtle thought that came as a result of a very insignificant incident. However, that one thought triggered an entire file of negative thought patterns in your mind.
Step Three: “When did I first begin to feel this way?”
The moment you discover that thought pattern, command it to leave your mind. Immediately say, “I will not let that affect me.” Because your mind was programmed from the past to accept that thought as truth, it slipped past your gate and into your heart. When it got to your heart, you felt it. So just slide it right back outside the door and get rid of it.
Step Four: “I reject these thoughts in Jesus’ Name.”
At this point, you must deal with the truth. What is the truth? The truth is what the Word of God says about you. Begin to declare God’s Word, speaking boldly in Jesus’ Name:
I am the righteousness of God in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
There is no condemnation to me, because I am in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1)
God has not given me a spirit of fear. (2 Timothy 1:7)
I am accepted, not rejected. I am accepted in Him. (Ephesians 1:6)
I am successful because I obey God’s Word. (Joshua 1:8)
Step Five: “I am who God says I am!”
You can do this with depression, rejection, fear, or anything else that attacks your mind. Over a period of time as you continue to practice this exercise, you will catch the thoughts more quickly. Instead of being depressed or dejected for a day, a week, or months, it will be hours, then minutes, then seconds. It will get to the point that when a negative thought comes to your mind, or you have that feeling, you will reject it, and it will disappear instantly.
Eventually, when the thought hits your mind, you will get rid of it so fast you’ll never even have the feeling that usually comes with negative thoughts.
Don’t think this will happen overnight. It takes diligent work to keep the wall in repair. Be diligent with your mind. As you practice this exercise, you will see great improvement in your feelings.
Don’t be condemned if you are in an emotional mess right now. Start where you are. As you begin to take authority over the thoughts that enter your mind, you can repair your walls and get your heart healed.
Addictions: A Spiritual Problem
I know many people who have tried to cover the pain of a broken heart with alcohol, drugs, or even food. Because their pain is temporarily alleviated, they become addicted. Addiction is no answer to a broken spirit. It only enhances the problems. Patching the holes in your wall with Band-Aids will not solve any problems.
I’m not giving you a formula to heal these hurts and wounds in your life. What I am saying is that the Spirit of God can heal you through the Word of God. Too many people have gone after healing the wrong way. The Holy Spirit is the only One who knows you personally enough to know how you’re going to be healed in the area of your emotions. Yes, God does use other people. But you are going to have to open yourself wide to the Holy Spirit. It is the Word that ministers life to your spirit. As your emotional problems are healed, the need for any “crutches” will leave.
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