Damaged but Not Destroyed Study Guide

From Trauma to Triumph

About the Book

ECPA BESTSELLER • Good news—God’s not done with you yet. This companion resource to Damaged but Not Destroyed by the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Relationship Goals will show you how to step into God’s bold future for your life.

Life has knocked you down—more than once. Your own mistakes have taken you down too, or at least made it harder to get up. But there’s good news: God is not done with you yet.
As someone who’s experienced significant challenges himself, Pastor Michael Todd understands that painful things done to us and stupid things we’ve done to ourselves can make us feel worthless. And he’s here to tell you that it’s time to stop letting your pain, fear, and regret define you.
With candid teaching and in-depth Bible study, this chapter-by-chapter companion guide to Damaged but Not Destroyed offers insightful questions, powerful exercises, and thoughtful reflections to help you see just how valuable you are.
Whether you are recovering from trauma, reeling from your own mistakes, or wondering how to reclaim your identity in the midst of current challenges, you can start your journey toward healing right here.
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Damaged but Not Destroyed Study Guide

Session 1

The Hit You Didn’t See Coming

Based on chapter 1 of Damaged but Not Destroyed

As we go along in life, our relationships, circumstances, and choices inflict damage that won’t heal with an ice pack. Hits leave bruises on our minds, bodies, and souls. These hits come whether we expect them to or not. They’re inevitable. Unavoidable. Predictable, even. Many times they leave us looking a mess. Our thoughts and feelings are fragmented and disorganized. Our physical, financial, and vocational health are limping along on life support. From the outside perspective, we look destroyed.

But here’s good news for you: What’s inside you—­your true gift, your spirit—­can’t be destroyed by outside damage, because your spirit was handcrafted by God in His own image.

Please hear this: No matter what happened to you, no matter who hurt you, no matter how hollow you feel . . . the value is still in you.

Let the Word In

Read Psalm 139:1–­18, out loud if possible. Explore a few Bible translations to get a fuller picture of what God is saying in this passage.

After you’ve finished reading, sit quietly for a minute or two. In our crazy, loud, busy, hyperconnected world, being quiet is a radical act that helps us make space for God. Don’t check your phone! Just be here, right here, where you are.

As you read Psalm 139, what feelings come up in you? Assurance? Disbelief? Hope? Fear? Anger? Write them all down, even if they’re mixed up or conflicting. Note which lines in the psalm provoke a particular feeling in you. (For example, verse 7 might inspire calm or anxiety in different people.) Take five to ten minutes with this exercise. The goal is to get an accurate inner temperature reading when it comes to your belief in the value God has placed inside you.

Let the Truth Out

1. In chapter 1, we learned about a few different kinds of damaging hits. Which ones have you experienced? Write down a few details about each hit you’ve taken.

The Dumb Hit: I did it to myself.

The Distracted Hit: I didn’t see it coming, because I was looking the wrong way.

The Delayed Hit: So ferocious that I couldn’t feel it until later.

The Direct Hit: Straight-­up sin that I couldn’t or can’t escape.

The Disaster Hit: A widespread event that affected everyone around me.

The Disguised Hit: I thought it would be a blessing, but instead, it knocked me on my butt.

The Domino Hit: A knockout punch that began an unstoppable chain reaction toward hopelessness.

Other Hits: Anything and everything not covered by the definitions above.

2. When you think about the hits you’ve taken so far in your life, which have made the biggest or most lasting impact? Why do you think that is?

3. Which areas of your life have been most affected? Which areas are top priority for you when it comes to healing? Why?

4. Dealing with our past pain, our present problems, and the fight for our future will get messy. But it’s so incredibly worth it.

How do you feel about the healing adventure you’re starting here? Nervous? Excited? Skeptical? Is it easy or hard to believe that it will be worth it? Why?

Most of us have a hard time believing we have value, especially when the metaphorical gift of our lives—­our covering and container—­has been kicked, cut, bleached, torn, and torched. But anchor yourself in this truth until you know it way down deep in your bones:

Your contents—­your spirit, your core, your eternal essence—­were handcrafted with love and purpose by the Creator of the universe.

Your value is so significant that once you understand who God has made you to be, it becomes power to achieve victory in every circumstance. Your value is for victory.

5. When you imagine victory in every circumstance of your life, what might it look like? Be honest with yourself and God. He may want to tweak or transform your definition of victory, but that can happen only if you’re H.O.T. (humble, open, and transparent).

About the Author

Michael Todd
Michael Todd is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Relationship Goals and Crazy Faith and the lead pastor of Transformation Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. His driving passion is re-presenting God to the lost and found for transformation in Christ. He speaks at a variety of influential churches, events, and conferences, such as Elevation Church, C3 Conference, Lakewood Church, VOUSCon, Relentless Church, XO Marriage Conference, and others. Michael and his wife, Natalie, have been married since 2010 and live in Tulsa with their four children: Isabella Monet, Michael Jr., Ava Rae, and Gia Joy. More by Michael Todd
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