Healing Trauma Through Identify

Happy Thanksgiving to WinShape Homes! Just when I think 2020 could not be more unprecedented, events trump my thinking, and I have to continuously remind myself that God is in charge. During this Thanksgiving season, I am thankful for His abiding presence with us.

I was recently sharing with a group about the clinical work we are doing and stated, that from a faith-based approach to counseling, I believe Christ can heal internal wounds of trauma.  Psalm 147:3 tells us that “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”

One person asked me, “How do you know when someone is healed from their trauma?”

Have you ever been asked a great question you feel like you should know the answer to, only to simultaneously realize you don’t?  Well, that was me.  I also did not realize that God had a divine set-up for us that day, because part of that meeting was hearing a quick testimony from two young ladies who grew up with a lot of trauma but at present day were restored and doing very well.

The common theme between both of these young ladies was that God had brought them back to their true identity in Him as children of God.  It hit me like a bolt of lightning. That is how you know someone’s inner wounds are on the path to healing; they come to know their true identity as a son or daughter of the King.

I do not believe that deep and meaningful insight into one’s identity in Christ suddenly shows up.  I believe that teaching and modeling our identity in Christ to trauma survivors helps put them on their own path to healing.

There are a few passages of scripture I want to highlight that can move us to re-think how we carry ourselves on a daily basis because of our identity.  First, Peter 2:9: “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”  And in Revelation 1:6, “He has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever.”

There are two things to catch from both passages: first, our identity in Christ becomes one of royalty.  One does not have to be of biological royal descent to carry themselves with deep confidence as such.  Second, our royal identity is inseparable from the priesthood; this tells me that as individual believers minister to the Lord, their royal identity becomes more solidified.

What if the children we are serving grasped the revelation of how much God loves them and were able to see themselves the way that He does?

Proverbs 30 tells us that there are four things the earth cannot bear up, and one is “a servant when he reigns” (verse 22). Another way to say it is when a pauper becomes a king.  When a person comes to follow Christ, Revelation 1:6 says that they become a king, but the earth will not bear them up if they have a poverty mindset.

Spiritually, I think having a poverty mindset is what trauma does to the brain, keeping the person from seeing themselves how God perceives them in their new identity.  From a counseling standpoint, our clinical team is beginning to discuss ways to implement identity into counseling sessions for the ones where identity is a struggle.

I want to leave us with two questions:

  • What would happen if the kids and teens in WinShape Homes were constantly reminded of who they are and whose they are?
  • What are some practical ways that we can increase those reminders to them?