Baby Steps:  Jesus said, “Little Girl, Get Up.” 

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I was connecting with the little girl (LG) inside of me. I would draw and write with colored pencils. I bought coloring books with scripture and would focus on the words and staying in the lines with bright markers.  Dancing at Zumba reminded me of her and all of the years of dance.  Music would always take me back, but it really depended on the song.  Some made me smile, and others I promptly turned off.

I looked through old pictures of me, and this was the one that caught my eye.  Maybe it was the white dress or the cute hair bows. Or, perhaps it was because I had cut my bangs. Mostly it was because that little spark was still in my eyes.  You couldn’t really see it in the other pictures. 

I put her picture on my desktop at work, on my phone and on my laptop. On days when I felt like giving up, I’d look at this picture and remember that I was fighting for her. At this point, it felt like she was almost out of that dark and scary closet filled secrets and shame.

I loved her, and we were connecting.

My weekend was filled with secrets.  I made a box of secrets, and I heard the word “secrets” several times.

I went to a Beth Moore conference and the topic was Sacred Secrets.  Then on Sunday, my pastor preached a sermon on the secret healings of Jesus and how some healings were private and others were public. He started with the story of the woman with the bleeding issue, and then he moved on to little girl in Mark 5:

They said she was dead. But Jesus showed up and took her by the hand and said two words “Talitha Koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”) 

Those words were illuminated on the page of my Bible and my heart started racing.  He continued reading as I followed along, “Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old).”

It was as if Jesus had whispered directly to the heart of the little girl inside of me, “Talitha Koum! Little girl, I say to you, get up!” It was time.

There would be no more hiding or cowering.

LG was finally out of that dark closet and she was by my side holding my hand.

After church, my daughter and I made this picture of Talitha Koum using the confetti from the Beth Moore conference. In the future, I planned to share with her what it meant to me and explain that those two words convinced me that Jesus heals little girls, including LG.

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Now it felt like we were one and together we were fierce.  

 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”)  Mark 5:41 NIV 

Baby Steps: He has set us free.

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I walked into the room holding my box, and I could not wait for her to see it. I opened it up and my counselor looked inside.  I felt like she could see every word and know the story behind it, but she asked me to pick a few and talk about it.  The session went really well, and I was proud of myself for making the box and sharing it with her.  

The box was powerful because it housed all of my secrets. While I felt strong sharing them with her, by the time I got into my car, I was struggling… again.  

My pounding heart ached while anxiety and panic permeated my entire being. The voices in my head were loudly arguing over how I was going to ruin everything by spilling these secrets.  

I turned up the radio and they were introducing a song from the movie Sister Act 2. It was called His Eye is on The Sparrow by Lauren Hill & Tanya Blount. I had heard the song before. 

But not like this.  

I turned it up even louder.  I hummed along at first, and mumbled a few words. 

As I continued down the interstate in direct sunlight, I sang along at the top of my lungs:  “I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free.  His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me….”

It was worship, and it was deep. 

I heard the gentle whisper, “free at 40.” 

My birthday was coming up, but free at 40? I had no idea what that meant, and since we were only days away that seemed impossible.   

Then I heard it again, “free at 40.” 

What would that even look like? How could I possibly be free at 40? 

Free at 40.  It didn’t seem possible, but I sure liked the sound of it.  

Let me be clear, the Anointed One has set us free—not partially, but completely and wonderfully free! We must always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back into the bondage of our past. Galatians 5:1 (TPT) 

Baby Steps: His light breaks my chains.

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Something really big happened in me during that facedown laid flat prayer time.  He lifted me and He gave me a voice, but He also filled me to the top with courage, boldness and passion.

Something shifted inside of me. 

In my group therapy session, she gave us each a small box, magazines, scissors and glue. Our assignment was to cut out and glue words and images on both the inside and the outside of the box.  

The words and images on the outside of the box displayed what we were comfortable with others knowing about us. The outside of the box represented how others see us and what we are willing to show others. This was mostly public information. 

 Whereas, the inside of the box was private information.  The inside of the box was how you saw yourself and what  you did not want others to see or know about you. The images and words inside of the box made us uncomfortable especially if others knew about them.  

The room filled with the noise of the magazine pages flipping, scissors cutting, and pages ripping while music played softly in the background. 

Words started to pop off of the pages.  Some were just seemingly harmless words but they were very significant to me.  

We took the boxes home to finish them, and I continued to cut and paste away. I found a slightly bigger box to hide my box in, because I didn’t want anyone to see it.  I decided to cover the outer box with words of healing and truth.  These words represented what I truly wanted for myself and this truth covered all of the messiness that was inside.  

 I was afraid to share my box with the group. I shared the outside, but not the inside. I brought the box with me to my individual session and showed my counselor the inside and explained what each side represented. 

Creating this box was so powerful. I continued to bring it to my sessions and it helped me to find words to share how the abuse had affected my body, mind and soul.  

The inside of the box was filled with shameful secrets and it was all so dark and dirty. All of those words and images kept me chained to the darkness. I desperately longed to be free.

The box was open now, and His light was shining into the darkness.

His light broke through the darkness and
he led us out in freedom from death’s dark shadow
and snapped every one of our chains. Psalm 107:14 TPT

Baby Steps: He lifted me.

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It was my hardest counseling session so far because I said the hard stuff. I slowly put words together to describe the darkness. I sat there and trembled like a child in tears and whispered about the awful sights, smells, and sounds.

I felt a sensory overload as all that had been bottled up for years in silence finally made its way out word by awful word. 

It was like taking a box of puzzle pieces, shaking it up and then letting them fly out onto the ground all at once. As I picked up each painful piece, I tried to talk about it. Over time, the pieces started to slowly connect and then the full image of the memory would be there before me and it really hurt.  It made me angry and incredibly sad at the same time.  

I felt so damaged and broken.  

I found it extremely helpful to go to the ladies Bible Study each week. I didn’t say much, but it was comforting to be with others because I was truly hungry for truth and light after swimming so long in lies and darkness. We were working through the study of  Daniel by Beth Moore and each week we watched a video at the end.  In this video, she shared about how “we were holy vessels, but sometimes our holy vessels were used to toast an unholy cause.”  

I was already shaking. I didn’t feel holy, and I certainly didn’t feel like a holy vessel. 

She stared straight at us and had us stand to our feet and repeat after her as she read a Declaration of Holiness over our life. It was incredibly hard for me to stand there and barely move my lips.  

I felt like I was going to explode and I wanted to sink through the floor.  

As soon as she said the last word, I grabbed my books and ran to my car. I collapsed over the steering wheel in tears and all the way home I desperately prayed out loud in the car, “God, help me to believe you. I believe you in my head but please help me to believe you in my heart. I don’t feel it, and I want to believe. Please help me God! Help me to believe. Help my unbelief!” 

This was the first time I recalled speaking the words out loud as I prayed. It reminded me of the father in Mark 9:24 who asked Jesus to heal his son and said, “I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief!”

A few days later, I was meeting some women at the church to pray and I just blurted out how hard it was for me to believe I was a holy vessel and that I was really struggling.  

As soon as the words left my mouth, my insides filled with shame.  

Later, we into the sanctuary and laid down flat at the altar to pray for the Beth Moore conference our ladies group planned to attend that weekend.  

About halfway into our prayer time, I sat up and started praying aloud while lifting my head straight up towards the ceiling.  My prayer grew louder and my voice grew stronger and bold.  

My physical posture was lifted to the Most High.  It was incredibly powerful.  

He gave me my voice.  

He lifted me.   

He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. Psalm 40:2 NIV