Along with the Spirit, a voice: “You are my Son, chosen and marked by my love, pride of my life.” Luke 3:22 (MSG)

Every man lives in a battle over which kingdom he will give his heart to, and every man has taken hits at varying points along his masculine journey. The wounds of accusation, guilt, shame, and fear are too often left untreated. These prevent a man from both receiving and offering love, possibly for the rest of his life. That’s exactly what our adversary hopes and plans for: to entangle a man in a web of wounds and lies.

The wounding experiences are so well placed and so well crafted that a man feels certain the lies are true, and as a result…he becomes engulfed and entrenched in the accumulative effect of those lies that make up his particular false self. Oh, he may get by, but a getting-by life is a far cry from an ABUNDANT one!

Understanding is a precious thing. If someone comes up to me and shoves me down, my initial reaction might be to get up and give him a left hook. But if he then explains that there was a snake behind the log I was about to step over, a quick shift of understanding takes place. That person turns from bully to hero in a nanosecond. Wounding moments won’t be healed or relieved simply by understanding alone, but it is a huge and significant start. What are the odds a man has interpreted all the days of his life accurately?

Getting a better understanding of our past sets us up for redemption and our next great step forward: moving into the critical healing and training we need as Beloved Sons. Once we see the lies we have lived under, as well as where they came from, we can invite Jesus to treat them.

These wounded places foster false guilt, shame, fear, and even hatred toward ourselves, others, and ultimately a low-grade resentment toward God. Again, these wounding moments had “lessons” attached to them, moments in which we learned something from them, and those lessons weren’t good.

Ask yourself, what wounding moments, and the false conclusions or declarations that rose from them now stand in the way of your freedom? Of your becoming a Beloved Son?

What lies and heavy burdens might you be carrying in your heart that it’s high time you stopped toting them around?

Speaking for myself, the fear of “not being enough” led me to the statement: “I’ll show you.”

Sometimes my false self expressed it in anger. At other times, it was more of a desperate plea: “I’ll show you I can. Please let me try. Choose me—give me another chance.” Either way, I would do anything to not ever be or feel rejected, whether it meant proving myself or pleading… neither approach displayed my True Self and neither place came from a settled heart.

By walking with God, we can go back and retrace our steps to find where it hurts. We can invite God into our story to show us how to collect and then connect the dots of our past. John Eldredge wrote:

“The true story of every person in this world is not the story you see, the external story. The true story of each person is the journey of his or her heart.”

In your time alone with God, ask Him:

Father, when was my heart assaulted?

Jesus, what were the wounding moments in my life and the messages to my heart?