(read the post and answer the prompt in the comments to win a copy of Jo Ann Fore’s new book: When A Woman Finds Her Voice)
say to those with fearful hearts,
“Be strong, do not fear;
your God will come,
he will come with vengeance;
with divine retribution
he will come to save you.”
Isaiah 35:4 NIV
I got in the truck trembling head to toe. My hands not wanting to turn the key. I couldn’t believe I had to do this alone, but my husband was working. My mother in law had come to watch the children, and I didn’t see her SUV until I hit it and looked back in horror. So I went in to tell her. But, I couldn’t explain my state of mind. No one but my husband, the group of women I met with for weeks, and myself knew where I was heading that night. How could that happen on a night like this?
I drove across town in a stupor of unrelenting fear. I wanted to turn around. But I knew that I had to face this. God why do I have to do this? God please help me. I can’t do this. I pulled into the parking lot with only a minute or two to spare.
Grappling with God and gripping the wheel as tears fell down my cheeks. My daisy heart plucking petals. He loves me. He loves me not. I screamed, “Please don’t make me do this.” Like Jesus, take this cup from me. Nothing. Yet, another petal plucked. He loves me. So I got out and made my way toward the door.
Once inside the air was thick with a somber shock on each face. Each face but one. The one who encouraged us weekly. The one who shined with the light of the presence of a loving God. The one who shared her stories while exuding the message, “You are forgiven, and precious child, you are loved.”
Then we began. One by one we submitted the music we had chosen. The scripture was opened, and the words hung heavily in the air coming to rest on our hearts with healing in their wings. The tears falling as the one directing the service asked who wanted to go first.
I don’t remember who did. It was so emotionally excruciating for each of us. Only pieces can be recalled as to what happened in that room with a handful of women and Jesus. It was my turn to speak. To read what I had written to those I loved that I would never hold. To those who I had come to memorialize that night. And the song I chose by Angie Smith was played.
The Light of Glory
We lit a candle for each child as we named them one by one. As I rose to light mine I glared at the name cards as they began to shine it it’s warmth . The cold had no choice but to flee. How I made it to my seat? I don’t know. I was somewhere else in my mind. I glared into space unaware of what was happening around me, and took my seat.
Then I saw them. A man walking on the clouds with two boys. One slightly older than the other. Both with shining faces. Then as I looked up to see the face of the man, they turned and walked away. I watched them go. I whispered, “Thank you.”
There they were with Him. He loves me.
I wept twenty-three years worth of tears. The shining woman, the Jesus with skin on woman, read an exchange between our children in heaven and Jesus. He assured them that we would come soon, when our work was done.
With Our Souls
Finally we would sing a closing hymn. Uncanny that my favorite had been chosen. It Is Well by Horatio Spafford. It seemed I was the resident vocalist. And we began. The words spilling over our tongues and into the air telling the God of mercy that our souls though grieved were well. Well because He had forgiven us, had taught us how to forgive ourselves and others, and allowed us to express our love for children that had been aborted after all those years. He had lifted the veil and showed us His heart beating out a rhythm of wholeness, and given us the right to grieve.
Some like mine were forced upon them. Some crisis pregnancies due to relationships that were abusive, incestual, just evil, and /or choices made due to the lack of support and fear that bound.
Here we were. Being loved, lifted out of the years of denial and darkness that threatened us to step into the light. And we had, courageously returned week after week, shared our stories, our pain, our fears, our guilt, and our shame. And we sung louder the refrain, “It is Well.”
We embraced each other, and then one by one left the room. As I returned to the truck one thing resounded in my daisy heart, He loves me.
Since then I still struggle with fear. Fear of telling this one part and my full story. Telling this one for the first time publicly like this leaves me naked. Wanting the secret to remain. How could He ask me to share this with others. So personally. I struggled again with my daisy heart. He loves me not. It hurts too much to talk about it. It hurts to much to think about what others will think. Pounding. Unrelenting. Faith versus fear. Faith, He loves me, and then fear, He loves me not. Faith, He loves me, and then fear, He loves me not. And I stopped with the next petal. He loves me.
He Loves You
Beloved He loves you too. I don’t know what you have been hiding with in the dark. What causes you to stop at the petal that gives the sniveling whisper or Goliath scream, “He loves you not.” I am here to tell you that it is time to use your voice. If not in a group. Tell at least one other. A friend, a stranger on a hotline, a counselor, a pastor, another you can trust.
You will wrestle with your daisy heart. Some days you will be on top, and others on the bottom. Jesus in the corner as your coach. Like Jacob don’t let go until He blesses you. Don’t give up. Then petal by petal you will find courage to face the darkness. And unlike the daisies we plucked at in our childhood. The last petal will always scream, He loves me.
More About the Book and a Giveaway
My friend Jo Ann Fore has written a book that every woman should read. When a Woman Finds Her Voice Overcoming Life’s Hurts and Using Your Story to Make a Difference. Through the words that she spilled from her heart. Through the stories others have been brave enough to share, including her own, she challenges us to become silence breakers. I have taken that challenge and hope to speak to women everywhere about my daisy heart.
Her post today highlights chapter eight in the book http://joannfore.com/when-we-dare-to-be-brave/
Click here to find more information about the author, the book, the pledge you can sign (and hold in your hands), and the bible study that starts Monday.
There are other link ups there below hers. Other silence breakers that would love nothing more than to encourage you, or share their stories as they pluck at the petals of their heart.
Like my Facebook page http:facebook.com/wethirstnomore. Then come back here, tell me you did and answer this prompt in the comments for a chance to win Jo Ann’s book. Don’t forget the free Bible study starts Monday November 18th. I will be joining in.
What keeps you silent, and what step can you take to become a silence breaker?
One winner will be chosen at Random. I will announce the winner Friday. My friend Darryl Bodkin is guest posting that day. He has hope for you.
P.S. If you live in the Virginia Tri-cities area and need help breaking the silence or healing from an abortion there is a link to the Pregnancy Support Center of the Tri-cities. The women there exude Jesus. They love like they are Jesus with skin on. Please click the link in the menu on the home page and break the silence. I’m praying for each of you today.
14 thoughts on “My Daisy Heart (and a book Giveaway: When A Woman Finds Her Voice by Jo Ann Fore)”
What tends to keep me silent is the intimidation of family, the steps I have taken & need to take more is; trusting God with when & where to share my story. I have re-committed my life to allowing God to use my story. I told him who ever & where ever you want me to speak out, provide opportunity & strengthen me to bodly use my voice.
I can completely relate to that intimidation. I encounter it daily. Thanks for sharing. Our voices, even in the comments, bless others hearts.
For me, the silence has been easier than the cruel words, hateful response and the blame placed upon me, when I “attempted” to open up. One little sentence, nearly 25 years of hiding from reality. So I’ve stayed silent. The self loathing and the FEAR of change, how do I ever love myself? I’ve got the plan, the first step is like jumping out of a plane. I’m ready to work on my faith, start the second half of my life, and begin again.
I know that on the journey to being made whole the first step can be so intimidating. I honor your willingness to take steps. During the healing process I found out that the best way to move forward is to pray and put one pinky toe in front of the other. Then when you can, half of your foot. After that one foot at a time. Do not set lofty expectations on yourself, but do not give in to the temptation to quit. Sometimes you may have to stand still and see the salvation of your God. He esteems you for wanting to be made whole. Praying for you.
If only we were in the same room right now so that I could just hug you my friend.
Thank you for being so very brave to share. Bless you for using your voice.
He DOES love you. and so do I.
Bless you. ❤
I can only imagine what that night must have been like for you. I too have struggled with letting others hear my stories but to keep them inside hurts more than anything. Thank you for sharing your heart here, it’s amazing what God can do!!
It was hard to publish, but I remembered the other silent women and I had to.
You are a brave woman, my friend. Thank you for your story that encourages other how these repressed hurts deeply affect our souls, how these buried hurts filter into everything about our lives. Living with untold secrets, with fears and doubts that keep us awake at night, that’s not God’s plan. Bringing light into the darkness and opening our arms to God’s loving mercy, that’s God’s plan. Thank you friend for your authentic vulnerability, and your willingness to heal. God can use this. Big. One day your family will be fully united. Until that day . . .
Thanks Jo Ann for challenging me to be a silence breaker. Grateful for you friend.
Thank you so much for sharing your “Daisy Heart”. Fragile, delicate and yet beautiful. I, too, have two children in the arms of my loving heavenly father. I understand the bravery to come out and share the story. I thank God for women like you, who have opened up their arms and lives to bring healing to a “silent” spiritual killer. God uses everything for HIS glory, even our tragedies. He is so good in that way. The redeemer and restorer. Oh he loves us so. ❤
Heaven is so much sweeter knowing they are there waiting.
Melinda – your voice is beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing this – with such candor and faith. And for your encouragement, and empowering voice. Wishing I could hug you in person.
I can not relate to the story as far as having a child with the Lord, but I do have a sister that I will meet on day. I do know that if there is one thing that I have learned is that HE is always there and everything happens for a reason. Whether for the good, bad or indifferent, there is a purpose for the things that we go through. We just have to remember that all glory goes to HIM even if it seems petty.