Are You Battle-Scarred by Emotional Shrapnel?

As kids, we dreamed about becoming a cowgirl/cowboy, nurse, doctor, astronaut, movie star, rock star, inventor, race car driver or flight attendant. We dreamed about being beautiful, happy, and influential. We dreamed about traveling, building, and buying.

Nothing is impossible in a child’s dream world.

Graduation mottos told us, “If you dream it, you can achieve it.” We were told there was no limit to what we could accomplish. No was dream too high, no ambition out of our reach.

We approached adulthood and our dreams were tempered by reality, but the future was still exciting. We planned our careers, our weddings, our families and our homes.

Reality exploded unexpectedly under our feet when we stumbled into adulthood.

We painfully learned there are factors that limit our dreams, like our health, finances, families, our talents and abilities, and God’s will for our lives.

Adulthood surprised us, and in some ways, disappointed us.  I pictured adulthood as eating my desert first, staying up late reading every night, and spending my money on camera equipment and books. I never dreamed about  thyroid cancer, funerals,  a miscarriage, false accusations by Christians,  or watching an Innocent Man sentenced to jail for eight years.  I have friends who didn’t plan on being single, barren, divorced or dying at a young age.

Unexpected suffering infiltrates our lives and can make it hard to appreciate all the other blessings.

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We’re walking around wounded by shrapnel from situations out of our control.

It doesn’t take too long to end up being battle-scarred and weary.


Do you often wish you could take your words back?  Are you sharp, impatient, or cynical?  Are your words unintentional swords?  Hurting people hurt others.

Is there someone that you don’t hate only because you’re a Christian?  I’ve heard people say “The Lord tells me I have to love them, but I don’t like them.”  Yea, I know what they did, I have those people in my life, too, but we can’t allow them to keep damaging us by reliving their wrongs. 

What gives you nightmares?  What can’t you forgive?  What can’t your forget? What can’t you accept?

Remember how you used to run and show your Mommy your owies?  It’s time to run to your Daddy – your Heavenly Father.  Show Him where it hurts. 

Speak freely to Him in prayer. He knows the words before they’re on your tongue, so you might as well say it to His face, and not behind His back. Bring your brokenness and your tears to Him.  

Have you even felt that loving compassion when a hurting child runs crying into your arms? You do anything to soothe and help them. You never want them to leave your embrace.

Your Heavenly Father has His arms are outstretched and He’s longing for you to come to Him so He can hold you and make your owies all better.


Don’t go it alone. Find other people who have suffered in a similar way and have learned to endure with hope and joy.  They will provide the encouragement, wisdom, and the accountability you need.

The best thing a dear older brother said to me was, “Girl, you gotta’ get over it!”  He loved me enough to point out I was picking a wound that needed to heal.

There are radio programs, books, blogs, and magazines.  Christian ministries are devoted to very specific problems that prove you aren’t alone in your pain. 


Some shrapnel can be removed.  Apologies can be made, medicine can be taken, counseling can be received.  I  avoid women who gossip. I found a few that can be trusted.   I made changes to improve my health. 

I was surprised to learn that most physical shrapnel is left in by the doctors, because removing it can cause more damage to organs and nerves. The body naturally forms a casing of protection around it.

If a situation can’t be removed or changed, it still can be healed. We can’t make people apologize for the damage they’ve caused. We can’t bring the dead back to life. Some diseases can’t be healed and we suffer the side-effects from the disease and/or treatment. You have to accept this and move on in your healing.

The shrapnel should be surrounded by prayer, not just yours. The Word of God will also soften those shards of life exploding in pain around you. Turn TO Him, not AWAY.


Not many of us are living the lives we planned, but that doesn’t mean we can’t life a  fulfilled and purpose-filled live. Happiness is a choice, not a circumstance. 

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Circumstances  bring us to a place where the Lord wanted us. A move 1400 miles away brought me four blocks from a Christian writers group and great medical facilities  – two things I didn’t know I’d need.

Cancer taught me much about my suffering Savior and gave me a great understanding and compassion for others.  I don’t regret what the Lord allowed in my life.

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Happiness is letting Him heal your emotional shrapnel.

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10 Responses to Are You Battle-Scarred by Emotional Shrapnel?

  1. bdd3 August 5, 2013 at 4:49 pm #

    Thank you very much much. This is exactly right whee I am right now.

  2. Stacie August 5, 2013 at 5:35 pm #

    Amen, well said, Girl!

  3. Kendra August 5, 2013 at 9:35 pm #

    Still searching for a new dream, as my old ones are no longer attainable…

  4. whynotmomdotcom August 6, 2013 at 3:30 am #

    Well written Mindy! Very touching and thought provoking as well. I too have learned to avoid the gossipers and the ‘Negative Nellies” as I call them. The people who suck the life force of positive energy out of you. Misery truly loves company, so they don’t miss me it seems! lol!

  5. Tandis August 6, 2013 at 3:33 am #

    I’m so thankful that you love the Lord Jesus so much!! Only He can be your All in All.
    Praying for your healing. <3

  6. Ruby August 6, 2013 at 5:37 am #

    Hugs to you.xo So much to deal with but still looking to the Lord. Our God is so good!

    • Mindy August 7, 2013 at 4:45 am #

      Ruby, I have missed you! Both of our lives have taken on a whirlwind, but I am thankful for your friendship and your wisdom.

  7. vnktchari August 6, 2013 at 7:01 am #

    Nice to see you stand out everything with positive belief and hope at Lord. We should learn to be happy in whatever we have and avoid getting shattered or dreaded if things go wrong. Our God is there to look after us at all times.

  8. Momma C August 7, 2013 at 1:25 am #

    Just as a flower blooms to beauty out of the manure that is spread at it’s roots, we too can grow in beauty if we stop wallering in the manure and begin to grow from it.

    • Mindy August 7, 2013 at 4:40 am #

      I love that thought picture. Thank you so much for sharing, Momma C! You are so right, these circumstances are to fertilize the fruit that is to come later. Thanks for your wise insight.

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