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Resource Sheet 7 - Understanding Childhood Wounds

Our expectation as babies is that our needs will be met and we will be provided with love and security. We long for LOVE, FOOD, TOUCH, WARMTH. When these needs are not met we act out of one of four ways, depending on our temperament:


1. We Feel HELPLESS
(1) If nothing happens we make a faith judgment (a bitter root judgment or inner vow) e.g. "I believe no one will ever love me." "I will never..."
(2) We feel an emotion - dread, futility, boredom
(3) We make a choice - "I might as well give up"
(4) We aim at substitute goals - promiscuity; wrong relationships ...
(5) We re-act out in DESPAIR.


2. We Feel HURT
(1) If nothing happens we make a faith judgment (a bitter root judgment or inner vow) e.g. "I believe no one will ever help me." "I will never..."
(2) We feel an emotion - crushed; lonely; rejected; abandoned; inferior.
(3) We make a choice - "I will bury all my hurt."
(4) We make substitute goals - escapes; addictions ...
(5) We re-act out in DEPRESSION.


3. We Feel ANGRY
(1) If nothing happens we make a faith judgment (a bitter root judgment or inner vow) e.g. "I believe life is always unfair." "I will never..."
(2) We feel - resentment; bitterness, at the injustice and pain.
   ANGER + FEAR = HATRED.
(3) We make a choice - "I will trust no one."
(4) We make substitute goals - achievements; pride; rebellion; rejection.
(5) We re-act out in AGGRESSION.


4. We Feel AFRAID
(1) If nothing happens we make a faith judgment (a bitter root judgment or inner vow) e.g. "I believe something bad will always happen." "I will never..."
(2) We feel - guilt (true and false); anxiety; dread; fear of death.
(3) We make a choice - "I will never make decisions."
(4) We make substitute goals - rigid belief systems; idols of things.
(5) We re-act out in WITHDRAWAL.


Our re-actions become like walls which brick by brick we build to protect ourselves from further pain. The enemy contributes his part. For example, an unwanted child receives rejection in the womb and grows up with the expectation of rejection, which sinful others compound by their treatment of him. Rejection becomes such a high wall that those who would accept and love are unable to scale. As adults we will re-act in the same childish way unless we take the risk and invite Jesus to show us the way to healing. He gives us a new way to respond to emotional hurts and grow closer to the Lord and others (Hebrews 4:14-16).