Our emotional baggage contains all the memories of painful, wounding life events that have shaped our personalities.

There are many questions surrounding emotional baggage.

It Takes More Than Time To Heal Wounds

Well, we can’t just walk away from baggage even if we want to. It has become part of our personality. And, I’m sorry to say, time does not heal wounds… it just causes them to fester.  

The only way to be free of our baggage is with the help of the Holy Spirit. The good news is, He is our helper.

There are many ways that wounds happen. The most damaging ones are those that occurred in childhood. Here’s an example.

A trust relationship with a father may have been broken either through abuse or neglect. We may have been betrayed, falsely accused or lied to. When this happens, the part of our personality that is based on trust is weakened and becomes like wet cement.

Satan then takes advantage of our weakened state. He creates an easily believed lie, which is based in some way on the wounding event. He plants the lie into the wet cement, while we are still reeling with the shock of the injury.

As time passes and the memory of the wounding event fades, the cement of our personality slowly hardens and forms an emotional scar. We think that we are getting over the injury. What we don’t realize, is that there is now an active lie buried in the cement waiting to be activated.

Years later, when we may be trying to advance our career or find a spouse, we can find that we are having trouble trusting. This is because the embedded lies are being triggered and they can now cause so much disruption in our lives.

The lies may be something like this, “You can’t trust men, you can’t trust authority figures, you can’t trust anyone,” and one of the most common lies, “You can’t trust God.”

These lies will interfere with our success at home, at work and spiritually. We can’t be talked out of these embedded lies because they are cemented to a true historical fact, the wound in childhood. The historical memory is of course true, the conclusion though is a lie.  

As long as there is baggage with embedded lies cemented to unhealed emotional wounds, Satan has ammunition to attack us. He will take every opportunity to activate the lies so that he can disrupt our life.

What Can We Do?

To come to freedom, we need the help of the Holy Spirit and the truth of the Word of God to heal our wounds, remove the embedded lies and empty our bag. Only the Holy Spirit can surgically separate the lie from the wound. He then wants to heal the wound and replace the lie with God’s truth.

This process is described in Hebrews 4:12. “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

God wants to set us free from our wounds, lies and baggage.  

If I’ve been describing you today, have the courage to see a Christian counsellor who can walk with you through the healing process.

Need Help? Check out these resources:

FamilyLife Canada: Find a Counsellor

Can a Christian Struggle with Depression?

Editor's Note:

We know this can be a challenging issue for families. We have mentoring available for you. Mentoring is a chance to ask your questions in a safe and private place. All mentoring happens by email.
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Written by FamilyLife Canada