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Making Peace With Your Painful Past

Businesswoman with head in hands

Businesswoman with head in hands

As I was completing an online application today, I created a username and a password for the application. Then,

I answered a series of “security questions” in the event I forgot either my username and password. In our hyper-cyber world, answering security questions have become normative because we have a trillion usernames and passwords for things.

And also because cyber-security is a pressing issue, hence the need for questions that only we know the answers to.

I began to really think about this notion of how we never seem to forget answers to our security questions. Security questions like…

Your mother’s maiden name?

The name of your first pet?

Or the first school you attended?

These are common ones that we often find while completing applications for sensitive matters like job applications and bank applications. What are so important about these tiny, particular questions? In a time when we are constantly bombarded with information, what is it about these random, seemingly miniscule questions from our past that we cannot ever seem to get too far away from?

Then I began to think about a dear sister-friend of mine. She recently lost her beloved grandmother, who we both loved so much. Grandma was elderly and in many ways lived a full life.

However, the moments before Grandma’s transition to Glory were extremely traumatizing for my sister-friend, as she witnessed and played a part of a scene that is hard to even imagine, yet alone live out.

As I do my best to lovingly support my friend in her grieving process, I realize just how much she is able to zero in on that tragic scene. I understand how in a moment, she is catapulted right back to the day that broke her heart.

I also fully notice how she can vividly recall the smallest details of that fateful day… the yells of her family, the final sounds of her grandmother, etc. Even though a few months have passed, my sister-friend remains close to that day and understandably so.

There are a few tough days that I too, remain close to.

The day my car was rear ended and spun out of control on I-495…

My mother’s very last words to me on her death-bed…

The day my elderly grandmother fell on her walker as we strolled through the park…

Those are painful, excruciating moments for me that have the aptitude to leave me depressed when I dwell on them.

As I told my friend, honing on those days will leave us crippled and emotionally challenged. The enemy’s greatest playground is our minds.

We all have those moments in our lives. Flashbacks that we simply cannot forget. Remembrances that are forever etched in our spirits.

Sometimes as miniscule as the name of our first pet, sometimes extremely painful, like how we have lost our loved ones. Even if we share them with others, there are particular details of our lives and hurts in our hearts that only we can recall.

There are places in our minds that have the ability to leave us crippled if we are not intentional about giving them over to God in serious prayer. The truth is, life is hard. The greater truth is, with God, we are able to do life.

If you are having a hard time moving past a painful time, I encourage you to lift up this prayer:

Dear God,

Thank You for being a mind regulator and heart stabilizer. I don’t know how to get through life without you.

I’m so grateful that I don’t have to do life alone. As I continue to live and sometimes feel the hurt and sting of life’s painful moments, I thank You for being my present help.

Lord, I pray that You help me to move beyond my hurtful places. Help me to accept what was so I can live with what is.

I pray that You substitute my sadness and all the memories of my hardest days and replace them with Your unspeakable peace and never ending joy.

In Jesus’ name, I pray.


Sophia Vilceus
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