The fifth video in the series, Recovery from Childhood Trauma, looks at the process of integration.
The process of integration involves bringing parts that have been separated together into a whole. Integration happens as our compassionate self embraces our wounded self, as our wounded self takes in love from God, from others and from ourselves, and as our judgmental self releases its defensive pride and its desperate attempts to control and surrenders to God’s loving care.
For a time, the embrace of our wounded self by our compassionate self will open deep caverns of grief in the wounded child. We will again need to see the road sign that reminds us, “This way to freedom.” We weep because we feel the pain we have pushed away for so long. We feel the losses–-with all their accompanying anguish, shame, despair and fear–-very directly. And we weep because we are able to feel the love we have longed for. We are finally able to release our grief because we are being comforted in God’s loving arms, in the arms of others who love us, and even in our own compassionate arms. This grief comes with a promise of blessing and healing. “Blessed are those who mourn,” Jesus said, “for they will be comforted” (Matthew 5:4).
As the wounded part of us is held and comforted, the judgmental part of us gives up its vigil. The part of us that has been trying to keep us safe by attempting to control our thoughts, feelings and circumstances can surrender. Surrender by the judgmental part of us is not a giving-up rooted in despair. Nor is it a kind of giving-into the overwhelming feelings of hurt. It is a surrender to love. It is the relief of releasing ourselves to God’s loving will and care for us. We can let go of being in charge. We can let go of relying on ourselves. We can allow God to help us, guide us, provide for us, heal us and love us. As a result, we can rest.
What we are likely to experience as our compassionate self gains strength through the processes of integration is that we are no longer at war with ourselves, but at peace. And we will find that our hearts are no longer so guarded. Our hearts become open to receive more and more of the love and grace that God continually pours out on us.
The audio meditation for this session offers you the experience of listening to the story from Mark 10 of Jesus calling the children to himself. It invites you first to listen as you put yourself in the place of one of the disciples, then to listen as you put yourself in the place of one of the children, and finally, to listen as you put yourself in the place of someone sitting next to Jesus and welcoming the children into your arms and into the arms of Jesus.
May you know yourself held, loved and blessed by Jesus.
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