Recently I participated in a class “Healing the Wounds of Trauma” which focused on helping people in the local church respond appropriately to people who are hurting in a way that is helpful as opposed to making them feel unfaithful.

We talked about “a wound of the heart.” Some life experiences are painful and can cause deep suffering which could be life-long. This is trauma. Trauma is a deep wound of the heart and the mind and takes time to heal. Trauma hurts every part of us.  In one lesson it was stated: “Trauma is a deep wound of the heart and mind that takes a long time to heal. It hurts every part of our lives: how we relate to others, how our body feels, what we think about, and how much we can trust God. It can make us feel separated from God and others. When a person experiences a distressing event or series of events, such as abuse, a bad accident, rape or other sexual violence, combat, or a natural disaster, they may have an emotional response called trauma.

Immediate reactions after a traumatic event include shock and denial, while more long-term reactions may include mood swings, relationship challenges, flashbacks, and physical symptoms. These responses may be concerning to the person experiencing them and those around them, but they are normal responses to traumatic events.

While the trauma itself was unavoidable and the responses are normal, they can still be problematic and dangerous. Professional support from a mental health professional such as a psychologist or psychiatrist can help with coping and recovery.

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