In room 14 of a Motel 6 when I was ten years old during our family vacation, I sassed off to my mom as she was brushing my hair. Guess what that got me? The brush. I had said something unkind. My words lacked love and respect in response to whatever my mom had said or done. My words had the power to trigger my mom’s fight or flight response system in her amygdala (the brain space that stores childhood trauma and pain). Robbed of time to think and to access the higher locations of mental reasoning, she chose to fight. For a moment she lost her true self and lost it on me instead.
I had lumps on my head for days.
You don’t have to be a trained child psychologist to see how moments like that (and others like it) stayed in my young mind and fueled the course of my future. Moments like that strengthened the lie that I was a problem, and also led me to believe that I could never trust my parents with my problems or my pain.
My mom carried on a generational baton of pain, and she unintentionally passed it on to me. I took it and ran hard and fast into the arms of the world, into my own flesh, and headed into proving my worth.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved.” – Ephesians 2:4-5
While I was busy running in circles, flying loose in the land of my pain only to cause more pain, God caught me like a butterfly in His freedom net. He caught me in order to set me free. Only God could see a selfish, self-seeking young woman who thought she knew it all and call her His beloved. I had no right to the freedom he was offering me. I was wrecked from my time spent pursuing the things of the world. I certainly had done nothing to earn God’s free gift of grace. In all honesty, I am not sure I totally trusted His initial invitation to freedom, but I sure was intrigued. Since facing the One who had grabbed my shoulders and turned me to Himself with such tenderness, together we have walked back from where I came from, cleaning up oh so many messes as we go.
Going back the way I came has made me powerful and given me a fresh perspective.
I have learned:
-When I reach a roadblock ( a pain point) and want to freak out, what I need to do is learn to breathe deeply, let my right heart rise, and get down on my face and knees.
-God gets down on His knees and operates on my heart when I am down on my knees. He heals everything and leaves nothing to chance.
-Being on my knees is the best position from which to find mercy, grace, and forgiveness- the gifts God still freely gives this undeserving girl in Christ.
-It’s mercy, grace, and forgiveness that fuel the flame of my lady-liberty torch.
-My liberty torch burning bright lights the way for others to exchange their baton of generational pain for their own liberty torch too.
This is the road to radical freedom: extend mercy, grace, and forgiveness. It’s not popular, but it is powerful. It’s the way of Christ. I choose to be powerful and effective over popular and understood.
“The prayers of a righteous man are powerful and effective.” -James 5:16
Looking back through the lens of God’s mercy, grace, and forgiveness, I can see my beautiful mama as a woman of pain that she never wanted to be. She fought hard to escape, but couldn’t get herself free. And like an immigrant mother in a war-torn land who hands her child to another aboard a slavery boat headed for free land, she gave me up for the chance that I might be free. The compassion of Jesus compels me to see that my mama did everything she could to make sure that I would not (as she did) become vulnerable prey for the world to devastate and devour.
“And God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant on earth, and to keep alive for you many survivors. So it was not you who sent me here, but God.” – Genesis 45:7
My mother’s desire for me to be free from suffering was a good desire, but in her brokenness, it was driven by fear. Fearing man and loving God are incompatible. It’s something that happens when we can’t look at the pain of our past and move toward feeling it and healing it for our future. In God’s great mercy and grace, He takes the wasted energy in our pain and turns it into fuel for our hope and our future. It’s the love of Christ that takes our pain and forges it into a weapon of praise.
Radical – relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something far-reaching
Freedom – the power to act, think or speak as one wants
God’s love reaches far beyond our pain and gives His beloved ones the power to act, think and speak as children of God in agreement with their Father’s heart.
Radical freedom is who God is and what He does. I implore you, for the sake of your freedom and for the freedom of those who you lead and love, make the exchange. Give God your pain, stay on your knees while heart surgery is in session, and rise with new eyes to see clearly. The very thing that tried to destroy you is the thing that the Great Physician will use for beautiful and radical freedom.
Alisa is the founder of Revelation Wellness and the author of The Wellness Revelation. She was born for the battle of freedom! She is an ordinary woman who spends time with Jesus, and then He causes her to rise up and do extraordinary things. Starting a ministry, writing, teaching, and speaking being some of those things.
Thank you for reading along on the Revelation Wellness Blog! This month we are excited to ask, seek and knock on heaven’s door for a greater revelation of what it means to live in radical freedom. If you are a monthly partner with us, we remind you to join us in the RevWell TV July Facebook challenge group page. It’s a place where you are welcome to come as you are and “glow up” in loving God, getting healthy, being whole and loving others.
Move in freedom with us in this #wednesdayworkout! For more great workouts, visit us at RevWellTV!
KRISTEN’S TABATA – “ALL IN”
This is an authentic, high intensity, Tabata training workout. You will cycle between 20 seconds of all out, the highest intensity you can give of a specific move, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Don’t count yourself out! You will do YOUR best effort for 20 seconds, not the instructors. WARNING: Only do in the Spirit of Grace! No flesh allowed. (INT/ADV) (LUKE 9:23; YOGA MAT, RESISTANCE BAND & HAND WEIGHTS)