Perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of overcoming traumatic events in one's life is the whole concept of renewal. Renewal simply put means, "To make new again." Many people with harsh stories of trauma in their lives travel over and over again down the dark damp cold wet alleys of woundedness. Over and over again the trauma, hurt, injustice, and pain is relived. Life seems to always revert to the old wounded paths of fear and pain regardless of any newness of event or relationship.
In our woundedness, we struggle to find meaning in well, just about anything. One area that can really help is in this thing I like to call "renewal." Renewal is nothing more than just finding something you really enjoy doing which uplifts your spirit giving you zest for life, people, and health.
For me, one is photography. Driving all over the countryside for just one good clear shot of nature, for example the owl in this blog, gives me great pleasure. My camera gear is not that great, but focusing upon this owl for over an hour to gain just the right angle for this picture invigorated me let alone the three hour journey to find it!
My grandchildren are another source of renewal as their zest for life and innocence tickles my soul every time I see them. Reading them their favorite story or playing a game with them takes my mind off of me and focuses my "me" upon them. They become the focus of my energy rather than the hurt of my past taking front and center in my mind.
I've nurtured a number of renewal paths over the years which I visit often. What might your path of renewal be? Find it, develop it, and embrace it. It just might be the thing that gives you more meaning and joy in life! And, for some it might just save your life!
Don was born in North Minneapolis, Minnesota. Having served twenty-two years in South Africa as missionaries with his wife Kathy, and eight years pastoring in the United States, he shares unique perspectives about life, family, relationships, and ministry.