Escape the Quicksand of Heartache

Avoid the traps of old heartache and find your own resilience

Avoid the traps of old heartache and find your own resilience.

What is heartache? I’d define it as that sinking feeling when a difficult topic arises with a friend. It can be connected to relationships or experiences, but it’s that quicksand of loss and hurt that surrounds you when the topic or person comes up.

So how do you transform your emotions after a season of loss? Let’s review the first three steps of this Lockout Series.

  1. First, look in your lockout, or virtual emotional storage unit, and see if there’s anything lurking in corners that needs to be dealt with. Discover your areas that need focus and attention.
  2. Second, discern whether you’ve been pushing it down, or pressing through difficult moments. If you’ve been a double agent, admit it and take that “beat” or pause to focus on lessons you’ve learned along the way.
  3. Third, lay down your old luggage. You can’t run free if you’re held back by old wounds or memories.

Which leads us to today’s thought. Give away the heartache. I’ve got three tips to share.

Tip One:

It’s easier to walk in forgiveness when you’re sprinkled with joy.

This week I encountered a person who was very difficult to deal with when one of my sons was hurt. There was a time when this person could have ripped into my memories. But I found myself walking next to her right after a moving sermon at church. My heart was overflowing, my perspective had been adjusted to the wider world, my gratitude meter was on high. So when I saw her, all I said was how lovely the message was. I walked into a forgiving moment almost automatically. Now there had been much laid down in the way of prayers for forgiveness in the past before this moment. But since I was afresh in that wider hope, it was so much easier to give grace in that time. So my first tip is to find places where joy can alight and you can be refreshed.

Tip Two:

To move from brokenness to resilience, you must find your source of hope.

When you’re weighed down by loss, and dealing with the pain and fear of brokenness, even simple responsibilities become overwhelming. Time does help with healing, but I’ve found a nugget that is critical in moving on from heartache.

My joy can’t be performance-based.

It’s a small but incredibly transforming realization. It leads to great questions, such as: What’s immovable and unshakable in your life? What must you do before you die? What is your life’s greatest purpose? To leave your heartache behind, or shift your focus away from it, connect with these answers and you’ll find unspeakable strength. Strength that comes from hope that will fill again and again with refreshment for your journey.

Tip Three:

It takes a supernatural touch to find the deepest healing.

I’m not talking about Moses on the mountain here. I’m talking about a field of readily available moments that are worth finding. I feel the supernatural in holding a child’s hand, and hugs and snuggles with dear ones. I feel refreshment with gentle spring breezes and taking five minutes to be filled with quiet beauty outdoors. Sometimes that wider perspective comes from exploring a new city or topic. Whatever in your life is quiet, deep, filling, and sustaining might originate from something larger that your own existence. Once I’ve been filled with simple joy straight from the original source, I can give away the hurt and exchange it for a morsel of beauty and faith.

Finally, it’s all right to ask for help. From others, or from the One who created you. Think of it this way, if you were going to cook a new dish, you’d use a recipe, right? How is this any different? Let go of the past and ask to be filled. You might be surprised with new joy and resilience.

Photo courtesy of survivethat.com.

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