I don’t think that post was insensitive, but I chose to elaborate on that post because it is a very real problem in our country. As I write these words, I pray that God will use them to encourage an individual who cannot see life without harming themselves.
First, let’s look at the issue of self-harm in our country. According to http://www.healthyplace.com/abuse/self-injury/self-injury-self-harm-statistics-and-facts/, the self-harm statistics are alarming.
- Each year, 1 in 5 females and 1 in 7 males engage in self-injury
- 90 percent of people who engage in self-harm begin during their teen or pre-adolescent years
- Nearly 50 percent of those who engage in self-injury activities have been sexually abused
- Females comprise 60 percent of those who engage in self-injurious behavior
- About 50 percent of those who engage in self-mutilation begin around age 14 and carry on into their 20s
- Many of those who self-injure report learning how to do so from friends or pro self-injury websites
- Approximately two million cases are reported annually in the U.S.
The most troubling part of this data is most self-harm cases are kept secret and not reported. Throughout my years of youth ministry, I dealt with self-harm about a dozen times.
I learned a few things that I would like to share with you.
First, self-harm doesn’t make you less loved, it means you have a problem that needs treatment.
Second, self-harm is a symptom of a deeper problem in your life. Self-harm could point to sexual abuse, depression, chemical imbalance, internal identity battles and even a lack of intentional love from both parents.
Third, self-harm becomes an addiction similar to pornography, alcohol or drugs. With each of those addictions, the human releases chemicals that one begins to depend on just to make it through the day.
Fourth, most people who engage in self-harm don’t like hurting themselves, however, they like less what they are temporarily covering up.
Fifth, there are times when people legitimately need medical treatment for physical issues. This need should never be minimized or diminished if it properly diagnosed.
Sixth, Jesus is ready and willing to heal your deepest hurt. It doesn’t matter what your past religious experiences are. You may not have any religious background at all. That’s okay! Jesus would like to redeem you because he sees the value in your life. That’s right, value. You are valuable. You are a treasure in the eyes of Jesus. Because you are those things, Jesus put himself on earth for 33 years and then allowed the government to place him on a cross to die. Three days later, he was resurrected and walked on earth for 40 more days before going back to heaven. During those 40 days, he had conversations with 500 people so we would remember that he did what he said he would do.
If you’re struggling today, please read these verses.
Isaiah 53:5 (NLT) – But he (Jesus) was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.
1 Peter 2:24 (NLT) – He (Jesus) personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed.
I’m sorry if you are harming yourself. I’m sorry for the deep pain you are trying to hide. I’m sorry that you face every day with wounds you cannot escape. There is hope for you in Jesus.
John 3:16 (NLT) – For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son (Jesus), so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
Romans 5:8 (NLT) – But God showed his great love for us by sending (Jesus) Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
Acts 16:31 (NLT) – Believe in the Lord Jesus (Christ) and you will be saved.
Romans 8:1-2 (NLT) – So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.
If you need the love of Jesus to invade your life, Jesus is waiting for you. If you need to be saved, Jesus is waiting for you. If you need to be freed from the condemnation you carry, Jesus is waiting for you. If you need to be freed from the choices in your life that lead to death, Jesus is waiting for you.
Will you invite him into your life today?
You can invite Jesus into your life right now. You can simply pray these words, “Dear Jesus, my life is a disaster. I have so much pain and hurt that I need to be healed from. I just read you died on a cross to heal me. I believe you really did that. I believe you can cover my wounds. I believe you can save me from the sin in my life. Jesus, please rescue me and redeem me. Please come into my life and help me to see the value that you see. Amen.
If you just said that prayer, I’m so happy for you. Please send me a message so I can pray for you.