Buried In The Past are Triggers for Our Future

1.)  Stephanie was a cheerleader in highschool, the pep squad captain and prom queen winner. She was beautiful, outgoing and strategically social. All the qualities of a future congress woman. That was twenty years ago. Today, she lives just off main street behind a bar her boyfriend bought. Sometimes he hits her. Most of the time she’s hesitant and regretful. Her drug habit didn’t seem like a big deal until she spent two years in Woman’s Prison. Then reality came crashing down on her. She is bitter and resigned. Life may get better if only she can survive it.

2.) Melody went to the same highschool. She shrank into the shadows when Stephanie walked by. She was twenty-five pounds overweight and timid, played in the marching band and loved the clarinet. Her acne made her a target of ridicule, so did her good grades and snorting laugh. Today, things aren’t any different. She shrinks back from the demanding presence of her boss, her dad, her husband and her kids. Most of the time she reads fantasy romance and secretly enjoys “Mommy Porn”. She tries to change, but stops just short of doing anything more. Life may get better, if only she would try it.

3.) Becca also attended the same school. She was smart, but hid the fact. She was beautiful too, but few noticed because she usually had her hair tied back for volley ball or track. She rarely spoke but she was a fierce competitor. Her athletics made her a local team hero. Today, she is a mom of three boys and she lets them win sometimes. She leads a Bible study and visits Stephanie for coffee when she can. She had her books featured on radio and television shows. She has a small but loyal following b’cuz she just won’t give up on people. She’s happy, flexible and driven. When she used to shrink back from public speaking, now she smiles and looks for the microphone. Life is constantly getting better, because Becca relies on that.

Three women’s past and present. Millions of neurons, millions of freewill decisions in twenty years made these women far different from the others. They started in the same town, school and grade. What made them different? And how are they the same?



Triggers are balls of nerves and neurons. I see them in my mind like tiny mental trampolines. When we thinking along, considering and debating a situation and we hit a trigger it shoots us one direction. For instance, someone calls us fat. It hurts our feelings and then when anything comes up about our weight we become defensive. Soon anytime any conversation about exercise makes us defensive. Eventually when someone walks by who is skinny it  puts us in a bad mood and we snap at our husbands that night over dinner. You see how that sensitive spot becomes like a trampoline and effects your whole attitude?

Triggers can happen in all kinds of ways. Spiritually, I’ve noticed they happen over a sensitive subject and can be set off after a fiery dart hits dead center in the heart. Soon the area around the dart gets inflamed, infected and starts to broil causing a new habit patterns of thinking. After time, a whole life has changed simply because of those triggers. Or it never changes because old triggers have never been taken care of.

What are their triggers?

Someone told Stephanie she wasn’t cool unless she did what the cool people did.

Melody was told young that she wasn’t good enough the way she was.

Becca was told she wasn’t good enough unless she was first in every sport.

Which one overcame their triggers? 



95% of the problem is solved when you discover there is a problem. One day, Becca discovered the problem was a trigger. Triggers take courage and maturity to discuss. They can be healed completely and the habit patterns; with stayed mind focus, can be overcome. But the person has to want to change.

Here’s an exercise to help you overcome these triggers.

First, find out what they are.

What makes you nervous? Defensive? Over-reactive? Or on edge? You probably already know those things. What you don’t know is what causes them, the triggers. They can be subtle but very powerful. This is when you go to God. I’ve had triggers because of certain topics conversations, names, places and even words. Smells can even trigger memories. Once you know what they are, you are 95% of the way there. After that, God can help you work them out of your life. Each trigger is as different as the person.

I heard about a gal who was so depressed about a past break up. She just couldn’t get over it. She talked to a minister and he finally realized that every day she pulled out an old box of love letters from her ex. She would cry and tenderly read them… Her next direction was to get rid of the letters. She didn’t think she could at first, but then she did and quickly moved on to a better relationship and a better life. It might be a little more complicated than that, but that’s one example in hundreds.

That’s why I say, you have to want the change.

Discovering the trigger is big, but the total deliverance comes from being brave and doing what it takes to get it out. 

“But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.” Galatians 6:4

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32

As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay (no way), in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us” Romans 8:36-37

“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked”. Ephesians 6:16

I could go on and on with tons of verses but there’s a start for you.

God bless you today

One thought on “Buried In The Past are Triggers for Our Future”

  1. Terri, thanks for this post. I have so many triggers, but I after reading this I can see they all lead to one main issue. I’ve been walking with God for nearly 35 years, but it’s never occurred to me to ask God to help me rewire my thought processes. Thank you for pointing me in the right direction.

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