This is one of the most vital and important areas of deliverance ministry that we cannot overlook. While it is important to cast out demons, it is just as important, if not more important, to minister to the emotional wounds. Emotional wounds are one of the most common reasons that deliverances can fail or demons seem to keep coming back and regaining inhabitation within the person. I need to make it clear that if you are going to be in the deliverance ministry, it is an absolute necessity that you learn about emotional wounds and how to bring the person to the point where they can receive inner healing from the Holy Spirit.
Our goal is not to forget a hurtful event or trauma, but to receive healing for that event, where the Holy Spirit removes the stinger from it. When we look back upon a healed wound, we can see it in a different way, because it has been healed and is no longer painful to look back upon.
Identifying emotional wounds
The first thing we need to do is identify the problem, and realize the need for inner healing. Below is a common list of common symptoms to look for in somebody who has an emotional wound:
Inner rawness: there’s often a sense of inner rawness and hurt that doesn’t seem to go away.
Irritability: it’s easy to become irritable with others, even if they aren’t doing anything wrong!
Little or no tolerance: there is a low tolerance issue with others, where you expect and demand from them.
Feelings always rising up: feelings of anger, hate, resentment, etc. seem to “rise up” within you at the slightest offense from others.
Overly sensitive about an event in your past: If there are events in your past which cause you to become very sensitive or angry, or even cause you to lash out, then it is likely revealing a deep emotional wound tied in with that event or memory.
Hard to forgive: it becomes very difficult, if not impossible to love and therefore forgive others. It can also be hard to forgive and love yourself. It can even be hard to forgive and love God, even though He has done nothing wrong against you!
Hard to feel loved: it is hard to clearly see and realize the love of others and God in your life. You may be surrounded by people who love you, but it can be difficult to fully feel and receive that love. There seems to be a wall up that blocks the flow of love into your life.
Lashing out: when there’s an inner wound that has festered, it becomes easy to lash out or have sudden outbursts of anger, hate, resentment, etc. You may find it easy to lash out at people who love you, and have done you no harm.
Feelings of anger towards God: when a person has been wounded, it becomes easy to blame God for their troubles and hardships. This is the last thing that you want to do when seeking to be healed, because it virtually puts a wall in your mind that can block the healing power of the Holy Spirit to operate. Although He desires to heal your wound, He will not override your freewill, and if you hold hate in your heart against Him, it can block His efforts to heal your wounds.
Self-hate: many times when a person is hurt from past abuse, they will begin to think that perhaps what happened to them, was deserved because of something they did or the way that they were. This is not true. Abuse is never acceptable, even if a child was being out of order. Parental love disciplines and corrects, but never abuses.
Easily frustrated: because an inner turmoil that an inner wound causes, it is easy to become easily frustrated with everyday chores and responsibilities.
Escapism: as a result of inner turmoil, it is easy to desire to escape or suppress reality. This can be in the form of overeating, drinking, smoking, porn, spending binges, etc. When a person indulges in escapism, addictions can form, and open the door to spirits of addiction, which makes the addictions virtually impossible to break.
Cutting: a person who is a cutter usually has an alter inside the person who is holding much pain, and needs to release the pain or it honestly feels that it deserves the pain (self-hate/religious bondage).
Retaliation urges: because of built-up hate and anger as a result of unforgiveness, somebody who has a festering inner wound will find it easy to retaliate or snap back at those who offend them or step on their toes.
Irresponsible behavior: inner pain has a way of consuming a person’s mind, and eventually this can take on a careless approach to life. It is hard to feel good about yourself if you have an inner wound, and if you don’t feel good about yourself, it will begin to show in your lifestyle.
Irrational expectations of others: somebody who has been wounded may set high expectations for those around them. They feel that others ought to hold up to unrealistic standards, and are very intolerable to any mistakes made. They find it hard to forbear (put up with) one another as the Bible commands of us (see Colossians 3:13).
Perfectionism: a person who has an emotional wound may also be performance driven. Perhaps they felt like no matter what they did, they could never please a parent or authority figure, and later on in life, that rejection wound causes the person to be a performer to the point where they are never satisfied and burned out by their efforts.
Feelings of hopelessness: I believe this is also a common result of unresolved inner wounds. Since the love of God is blocked in your life, it becomes hard to see why He would love or care for you, and therefore you become an easy target for feelings of hopelessness.
Drivenness: when you suffer from an emotional wound, it can create a sense of void in your life’s meaning, thus driving you to find meaning and purpose and happiness. This could be in the form of college degrees, careers, financial success, etc. Instead of appreciating the person who God has made (YOU!), you find yourself chasing what you think will bring true happiness and purpose to your life.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD: it is my belief that Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) often involves emotional wounds that were never fully healed. This is especially true with people who have bondages to self-hate, self-resentment, self-unforgiveness, etc.
Hostility towards God, self, and others: because of bound up emotions, a person can tend to feel hostile towards God, other people in their life, or even themselves. This is usually rooted in a form of bitterness against God for not preventing something from happening to you, bitterness against somebody who has wronged or harmed you emotionally, or bitterness against yourself for failures that you’ve fallen into yourself.
Be honest with yourself!
If you had a headache, would you go to the doctor and tell him, “There’s something wrong with me, but I don’t want to think about it long enough to figure out what it is! I don’t know what’s wrong with me! I don’t know if it’s a headache, a stomachache, a runny nose, or an ingrown toenail!” You would never do that when seeking physical healing, would you? Then why do we so often do this very thing when we are seeking inner healing? We know that there’s a problem, a wound, but we don’t want to even peek into our pasts to figure out what is really wrong! If you’re going to receive healing for an emotional wound, you need to first be honest with yourself and what has happened. Let’s get started by answering some basic questions:
Who is it that you hate or blame? Be honest with yourself; there’s somebody in your past that you, or an alter within you, is holding something against. Be specific, and go back as far as you can. If you can figure out when this wound began, and who is responsible, it is the first step to receiving healing for the wound.
What did they do to you? Make a list of everything that was done to you, which you still hold against them in your heart. What might be a list of things which you still hold onto in your heart? What things can’t you seem to easily forget? I’m not referring to a list of people whom you haven’t forgiven, but rather a list of people/events where you just cannot seem to release it from your heart.
Don’t try to cover up their mistake and say that it was alright. If they did you wrong, then there’s no getting around that. Being honest about what was done to you is very important.
What things have you done, that you deeply regret? Make a list of things that you still, to this day, regret doing. If you have any feelings of self-hate, self-unforgiveness, etc., then you need to be honest and figure out why you hate yourself.
Is there anything in your past that you feel excessively embarrassed or ashamed of? This is a common cause for self-hate. If there are things which you still haven’t forgiven yourself of, then now is a good time to make a list of those things, so that you can effectively forgive and release the hate held secretly within your heart against yourself.
It is vital that we get right down to the roots, and lay out the specific reasons why there are wounds that have not yet healed. Spiritual infections, like natural infections, will fester and grow worse when in the dark; it is important to bring the issues to the light, so they can no longer fester, but receive the healing light of Christ into those areas of the mind and emotions. If you cannot be honest with yourself, and bring these things out into the light, then you’re only hindering the healing power of the Holy Spirit from ministering to those wounds and bringing about healing in your mind and emotions.