Last night I read an excerpt from my new book released “Caring for the Child Within” (for sale on Amazon) during my church Woman Service Series “I am Possible” after much thought and advice of what part to read I landed on the this excerpt:
“When I was between 30 and 35 years old, during a counseling session, something happened that gave me perspective on why I am the way I am. Yes, God created me, but there was a way I view life that affects the way I behave and feel on a daily basis. Let’s just say I was not an optimistic person, always expecting the worst.
There were events in my life that shaped the way I thought and dealt with disappointments and criticisms. This way of thinking had me stuck and unable to be the woman God created me to be.
My counselor did a therapeutic exercise with me. She placed before me an empty chair and asked me to visualize myself as a little girl sitting in that chair. It was a difficult task because, sadly, most of my childhood memories were trapped in my mind, not wanting to be exposed. Up to this point I could only remember things that happened after the age of 16.
Seeing my frustration in my efforts to imagine myself as a child, my counselor worked with me patiently. She asked me to imagine a dress I might be wearing and since I had a couple of photos when I was in school, I was able to begin my description. I described myself wearing a blue skirt that reached below my knees, a white shirt, blue socks and black shoes.
She then asked me to describe my hair. At the time I honestly thought, "this is stupid", but despite what I was thinking, I decided to follow her instructions and answered her questions. I said, "Well, my mom always combed my hair and I remember getting ridiculed at school for it, so I probably had my hair braided like a two-year-old."
She kept asking me more questions in order to create a clear picture in my mind of how I looked as a child. This was the first time that I took the time to imagine myself as a child.
My mind worked in such a way that I could see a clear picture of myself as a child. After putting together a picture of myself with fragments of what I could remember, the counselor asked, "How old do you think the child that you visualize in that chair is?" I said, "About 10 years."
Speechless, I intensely stared at “Little Olivia" as she sat on the chair when the counselor interrupted me. Her interruption startled me because I was surprised at how clearly I could see little “Olivia.”
The counselor asked me, as she allowed me to stare at the chair, "If you could say one thing to her, what would you say?" Without hesitation and with eyes full of tears, I said, "We made it." (Pg 10-12)
After the program was done many women came up to me and said some very encouraging things like; you are courageous, to put yourself out there like that its inspiring, thank you for been brave because specially for our cultures blacks and Hispanic to acknowledge that we need help (professional help) is very look down upon; I can relate and I feel like I can start writing a book with exact words you read; I was just saying to myself I think I need some help in some areas I am not happy, been married has trigger some things in me that I realize takes my to my childhood and I was just wondering the other day what should I do, your book sounds super inspiring thanks for doing such hard work so that perhaps countless of others can be healed by God thru you, we made it, we made it….”
Now you will think that all this positive feedback would make me feel good and pray to God that it doesn’t get to my head, but for me it has the opposite effect. Why because I know who I am.
So instead of waking up happy I woke up heavyhearted. I have done a lot of self-work that I knew it was because of all the positive feedback I heard last night. I knew that I needed to go and talk with God so although it was raining I got my raincoat on and went on an hour and half walk and pour my heart to God. So here is what I learned:
I am not courageous or brave I am the complete opposite, I am fearful and timid, and this may come as a shock to many but I am 50% extrovert and 50% introvert (that is why I love the Bible, because it doesn't matter what percent I am feeling that day I can chose to be Jesus100%!) but one thing I am is I am a fighter. Not the kind of fighter that when they get knock down they stay down, but the kind of fighter that when I get knock down I smile, because the One who knocks me down has the power to put a smile on my face even though I have been defeated.
I don’t fight everybody I wrestle with God (when my kids are fighting to do not submit to God I say sometimes; “son/daughter why are you fighting God) how ironic I do the same thing. Oh boy! that's where my kids getting from...
See when I fight with God he knocks me out but his knock outs produces in me a sense of relief that puts a smile on my face. Why, you may ask; because I am no longer carrying a load, He has taken over!
I realized this morning that as long as I decide to be courageous and brave and approach God even if it means I may not like what He has to say, makes all those things I hear said about me. I am all those things not by nature but I have become them.
1 Corinthians 15:10 describes it perfectly; "But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them--yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me."
Here is what I concluded after my morning walk: Yes I am not brave or courageous in my opinion, but God grace working in me will allow others to see more of who I am a sinful woman in need of the grace, mercy and love of God and more of who God is, for He is Courageous, He is Brave, He is Inspiring, He did all the hard work so that others can be healed including me, He wrote my book, I just get to enjoy the feedback!
To God is the glory.
P.S This is a picture of me after my morning walk!