The problem with masking painful hurts, running from painful memories, and avoiding painful situations is that the pain is still there, injecting the poisons of bitterness, fear, and despair into our spirit. We can neither live fruitfully nor fellowship fully with others as long as pain is allowed to control our choices. Simply put, we cannot enjoy God as long as our pain is unaddressed.
I do not want to oversimplify things, but let’s recognize that addressing pain (victoriously) begins with engaging the source of the pain itself. Acknowledging the pain (and its source) is essential to recovering from it. We then trust in God’s admonishment to forgive (Matthew 6, Mark 11, Luke 6, 2 Corinthians 2, Colossians 3, etc.).
When we forgive (because He told us to) we find that we are ourselves set free from the weighty obligation of taking folks to account for their sins against us (which has us rehearsing painful events over and over thereby keeping them inflamed within our hearts).
We then move on to the new things in our lives that God has in store for us. We let go of the former things (even our broken dreams) and press on (Philippians 3:13) allowing these new things (and new dreams) to fill up the empty spots in which our past experiences try to keep us trapped. This applies to even our own mistakes, failings, and sin… we set right what we can but we know that all the rest is covered by the blood of Jesus Christ.
Walking obediently with Him (in even our attitudes as well as actions) allows His healing to become effectual in our experience. The more of God in your mind, heart, and experience, the less room for the bitter fruits of the past.
Healing takes time, by the way, and only the faithful and patient application of “waiting on the Lord” (Isaiah 40:31) allows us to experience the reality of recovery.