letters for momma

the finer details of momma’s life were hard to grasp, often getting further out of reach anytime she asked more questions. it was still so painful for momma to talk about it all. she was just a little girl when grandpa took her to live with his sister and her husband on the farm in the midwest. momma had settled into country life but from what she heard, family relationships were far from healthy or peaceful.

grandpa had married a second time. momma didn’t have good things to say about her. she used the ‘b’ word to describe her, and she said she was mean. when marriage #2 fell apart for him, grandpa divorced and married a third time. this was the woman she knew as step-grandma.

sorting through the memories in her head, she knew momma grew up on the farm with the big white craftsman style house with plenty of cousins and neighbors nearby. she went to a small lutheran grade school and then public high school, both in the nearby town. aunt and uncle must have doted on her. it had to be so. but what else was there?

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photo credit: pixaby

the letters remained secret for decades, their existence revealed when momma’s three stepsisters came to visit. see unpacking old bags.  momma had her own family now, three of her four children born. the girls were there visiting in part because the momma the four of them shared had died. she’d never been able to see her oldest daughter again.

as the four sisters visited and got acquainted over the span of a month, the oldest stepsister finally asked the question. “didn’t you get all those letters momma sent you?” time must have stopped right there. even now, she could feel the shockwaves go through the air as she imagined her momma processing the question.

“what letters? you mean she wrote to me?” oh, god. how father’s heart must have lurched as he watched his daughter learn that her momma had reached out to her, not just once, but many, many times.

letters had been mailed from various locations where momma’s momma, her new husband and her 3 daughters had lived. both women had been having babies at the same time, odd as that seemed.

it wasn’t clear how soon after her daddy had moved her across the country that the letters began to travel through the postal service to the well kept farm. there were more questions than answers. one thing was clear: momma never got the letters her momma wrote and mailed.

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photo credit: pixabay

this was shock and awe, none of it good. it took forgiveness to a whole new level. the very people momma felt indebted to for taking her in and raising her were the same ones who’d kept her momma’s letters from her. her daddy knew, too. who’d made the decision to keep those letters from her and why?

from a safe distance now many years later, she wondered how could her momma process her emotions and feelings properly when the people she might talk to about it were the same ones who were accountable for the betrayal? all this mess explained a lot. her momma had bitterness, unforgiveness, trauma, betrayal and who knows what else thrown into the mix.

the spirit of religion kept a tight lid on the dysfunction and deception. no one talked about any of it. just keep looking good when you go to church on sunday, and everything will be fine. what a bunch of dung.

and there was her poor momma, sick and broken in her soul from all of it. it broke her so badly that any chance for healthy relationships with her own husband and kids was virtually destroyed. that generation didn’t have the same revelation or tools to get on the other side of this stuff. they had no grid for soul or emotional healing.

fast forward to today. it was still all so much to process. the great aunt and uncle that had raised momma had been grandparents to her. she loved them. uncle had died over twenty years ago, but auntie was still going strong at 101, tooling around the nursing home in her wheelchair with a hearing aid that was seldom turned on.

her own emotions went all over the map. it was easy to see now why there had been so much friction between her momma and grandpa. there was guilt. it explained why grandpa’s death had been so troubling.

momma, i am so sorry. i tell you this in all truth: daddy god loves you, and jesus has been with you in all of the pain and trauma.

your story is not over yet. it’s going to end well.

(copyright © 2017 jane doe productions)

 

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unpacking old bags

she was just a young girl when the other three girls showed up for a month-long visit. they were close to her own age. her mother called them her stepsisters. this was new information. what was a stepsister and why did her mother have three of them? and who was this other ‘momma’ the four of them referred to? was that her other grandmother?

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photo credit: pixabay

the girls’ arrival opened up the past, like old luggage surfacing at will after having been buried on purpose decades earlier. as the bags were opened and unpacked, the walls of the old brick farmhouse became privy to long held secrets. nothing would ever be the same. tensions flew between elder relatives. conversations were held in hushed angry tones while pointy fingers accused and placed blame. her mother and stepsisters were caught in the crossfire.

years had passed since that fateful visit. she hardly remembered any of it now, save for the trauma of her infant brother rolling off of the bed onto the floor. she’d spent the better of part of the past thirty years (the last five in earnest) trying to piece together the events of her mother’s life. she hoped to better understand why their relationship played out like it had. sometimes it helped to have understanding of the timeline of physical events to see the spiritual cause and effect – and vice versa.

clarity made it easier to forgive, to discard unreasonable expectations. the two went  hand in hand, both were necessary for emotional, mental and physical healing to occur.

it was time for another epsom salt bath, seeking more revelation. that was generally how it worked. the combination of the salt and soaking music opened up her vision like nothing else. holy spirit showed her stuff.

this bath led to a new ‘seeing’ of her mother. an old familiar black and white photo came to focus in her mind’s eye. she saw herself as an adorable toddler holding on to the edge of her pretty dress standing by what might have been her grandfather’s fancy car. in a moment, the little girl in the photo took on the face of her mother at that age.

this image of her mother was not easy to see. she was a little girl, vulnerable, born into a family of broken adults. she knew what happened to momma at that tender age. it was as though she’d been thrust into the part herself. she had asked to see what happened and here it was.

there were issues. momma’s own daddy was broken and drank a lot. momma’s momma was young and her momma said she was too young to be tied down with a baby and a husband. this piece puzzled her greatly. what was going on between this mother and daughter and why would a grandmother reject her little granddaughter? how far back did this root of rejection go?

her memory went back to a phone conversation she had with her momma on a lunch break walk. momma recalled their house in portland, sitting in the breakfast nook eating  with a view of mount hood out the window. she knew if momma remembered mount hood, she remembered other events, even if she didn’t speak of them.

back in the past, divorce proceedings took place in court. after that, her momma’s daddy took his little girl away from her momma across the country. she would never see her momma again. her heart was broken.

this explained in part why she had been unable to love. she’d been torn from her own mother when she was just a baby. that trauma alone kept her stuck emotionally. she’d had no tools to heal, no one to share her grief with. she got stuck there.

and then there were the letters. that is another story.

love your momma even if she can’t love you back.

(copyright © 2017 jane doe)

 

 

he is glorified

it was saturday morning, the first day of the long holiday weekend. waking an hour later than normal, she went downstairs to make coffee and breakfast. a few minutes later, she was back at her desk to eat in her room with a view. it was a feast: coffee with bacon, eggs and a lemon ginger scone from her friend’s bake shop on etsy.
the deer were grazing in the backyard, a multitude of birds singing over them. yellow finches flitted from tree to tree as a crow teetered on the very top branch of a cedar tree. it reminded her of an angel that was perhaps a tad too heavy for the top of the christmas tree. what a good, good day. creation was awake.
“holy spirit, you order my day. i give it to you.” she scrolled through her facebook feed as she ate, responding to messages and posting the words holy spirit gave to her to encourage others. at times, she wondered if it was good use of her time. little did she know.
during the past week, she’d observed an increase in communication with a friend who lived on the opposite coast. they posted comments back and forth. she kept reading, typing. breakfast was excellent, her plate empty. had bacon ever tasted as good as it did today? maybe not.
the little nudge came, the knowing, barely perceptible, but it was there. “call her.” she rose to get her phone from the nightstand and returned to the desk. scrolling through the contacts, she found that she still had her friend’s name and number. the scent of lavender essential oil wafted through the air. it was soothing and grounding as she called the number.
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photo credit: nathan leblanc
her friend didn’t answer the call. instead, voicemail answered with no identification as to whom the number belonged. hoping for the best, she left a message, explaining that she was prompted to call her friend, but apologizing and blessing if the number now belonged to someone else. she ended the call.
going back to facebook, she messaged her friend, telling her she just tried to call, but not sure she had the right number. then she saw the ‘why’ in her call. the messages confirmed the purpose.
friend: “was in gas station most likely the time u called was struggling not to buy cigs. then god. jesus whispered ‘i will, i am helping you. i will help you. you don’t need a crutch. you are healed. took me by surprise how fast the want left when i took his hand. thank you for reaching out to me.” 💚💜😁😁😁
jane doe:”wow!!!!!!!  that was the why!!!! 
i’m an ex-smoker, love.”
friend: “oh wow wow double wow!!! that’s papa!!! 
not smoking is like learning a new language
the urge was intense
his whisper, ‘i will help you.’ over taken in jesus love here. thank you ****** for calling.
i just heard it. and the time is the same time i was standing at the counter 💜💜💜💜💜
wow!!!!!”
jane doe: “you will not be enslaved again in a yoke of bondage. ❤ 
 this would make a great jane doe story. i can write it just from what happened today.
you are not identified and he is glorified.
send me the time of the call.”
she had walked this path to freedom with jesus. she knew. she came alongside her friend with strength to push back that yoke of bondage.
friend: “what a good dad. as he said i will help you. that’s when u called.
12:09. 
i am free this started few weeks ago progressively. I was listening to the birds, water sounds of papa’s creation.
not identified and he is glorified. 💜💜💚💎🍴
i’m so thankful you called. he was working this encounter from the start today lolol.
jane doe: “yes. i was in tears and prayer almost from the time i woke up. and he drew us together more closely this week so we would be in tune with each other. i saw that before today. please put any other details you want to share in here, and i will craft them into the story.”
friend: “Need a min. lol
I seem to talk better than writing here.”
New number so you have it *** *** ****. he is glorified. crying in his love.
jane doe: “got it!
i love what he did between us today!”
friend: “i was just going to tell you that. i love what he has done between us today. powerful love. and we didn’t even know at the time. i’m blown away by the way. in awe of grace. you really called at 9:09.”
can’t wait to read he is glorified. i’ll write later a little more of what was happening.
the timing is father all the way. i told him, i think i think better smoking father my brain doesn’t seem to work as well. words coming out when i hadn’t processed, thinking before i spoke all week. lol wow wow wow. how did this come together today? i’m crying 💜🐦 hope you get to see wonder woman today.”
Papa had swooped into time to rescue his girl through another daughter. on one coast, it was 12:09 pm, and on the other it 9:09 am.
the timing was perfect.
who’s your daddy?
(copyright © 2017 jane doe)

taking back the name

options were limited and none of them were good. she could run away, but to where and to whom? and who would believe the stories about what really went on at home? did anyone really see her? she felt like the invisible child, even as the oldest.

she heard a voice say, “no one would believe you anyway.” at the age of fifteen, she wasn’t certain who that voice belonged to, but it might be right.

on the outside, their family looked pretty much the same as the other farm families in the area. she never stayed at friends’ homes long enough to know what was real and what was show. one of the neighbor kids had a mini bike that he used to taunt their dog. clearly, there were problems there.

no one heard what happened inside the four walls of the house, or in the barn, or the fields. maybe other farm families were all messed up, too.

she only knew she wanted out. there was no safe place, no haven, no peace. maybe she could go to new york, become a model. anything was better than here. she moved out of the house the summer after graduation. it was too painful and chaotic to stay at home.

a couple years went by, along with a couple of moves and job changes. those were manageable even in her own instability. but then the call came. her mother was hysterical, not making much sense. then her dad got on the phone. something about him having an affair, them getting a divorce. it all blurred together, all the years of fighting, the strife, the fear, the abuse. all of it came spilling out. and it was too much.

now she simply wanted to disassociate and distance herself from all that identified her to the family. it was so broken, such a mess. it felt shameful. their family name was dishonored.

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photo credit: pixabay

for months, she thought of different name combinations that would work, thinking she would legally change her name. she never did. but she no longer identified with that family name. it was just too painful.

the pain got worse before it got better. years went by. people died. perspectives changed. and the big move happened. it was the hardest and it was the best. healing came, layer by layer. the more she cooperated with father god, the faster it went.

distance helped. she could be who she was now. no one was looking over her shoulder, and she no longer needed permission to fly out of the cage and be free.

her mother’s health waned, so there was the occasional trip home. the mommy wounds were deep. forgiveness didn’t come so easily; it was a choice of her will, and nothing else. she certainly didn’t feel it. so she just kept choosing it.

the daddy wounds were different. abandonment, neglect, abuse and blah, blah, blah. the list could go on and on if she let it. family members were getting old. people were dying.

and there was the truth that couldn’t be denied: father god had placed her with her parents. he knew what she could and would overcome. and he said he would cause it all to work for her good.

she and the big daddy talked about the earthly dad quite a lot. “i get that he’s never going be the father i would like him to be in this life. you get to do that for me. i’m good with it now. but, i would just really like it if he would take an interest in who i am and what I’m about. for a minute.”  daddy god didn’t say anything. she knew he heard, so she went on with what she was doing.

then, on a friday night, she missed a call from her dad while she was swimming. concern rose quickly. the only time he ever called was on her birthday. did someone die? was the family okay?

she called him back only to get a message saying his voicemail wasn’t set up. well, of course it wasn’t. she shook her head and tried one brother. he didn’t answer. she left a message.

mom didn’t answer. her voicemail wasn’t set up either. what was the matter with these people and their technology? she called her sister, got her voicemail, left her a message.

next she tried her son. he answered, but hadn’t heard anything. “hey mom, i’m always the last to know. they don’t even invite me to christmas until the same day.” they laughed. she promised to let him know if she heard anything.

she called the other brother. he answered. “i haven’t heard anything, so everyone must be fine.” sigh of relief. if he didn’t know, yes, everyone was okay. and the sister texted back. she hadn’t heard anything contrary, either.

this was puzzling. dad calls on a day not her birthday, doesn’t leave a message and no one is dead. something was at work. she could feel it.

the next morning, her father called her back, “hey, ******, i saw you called last night.”

“yes, i called because i saw you called me. you only ever call on my birthday, so i thought someone died. i was frantically calling my siblings, mother and son to be sure everyone was good!” he laughed, she laughed.

then he asked her the question she wanted to hear. “so, what are you up to, what are you doing? bam. there they were, the open-ended questions that gave her permission to share pieces of her life with the man she knew as her earthly father.

she answered him with confidence and gusto, pleasure and delight. as she shared the details of her life, she heard how full it was, how rich she was in experience, deep friendships, location and above all, fulfillment in her relationship with father god. he was the one who made it all work.

her dad’s initial call? it was a pocket dial. but not really. it was really a set up to answer her prayer and she knew it.

when they were ready to end the call, for the first time ever, she blessed him with words he had never heard before, “i bless you and i love you, dad.” “i love you, too,” came his response. she encouraged him. “stay in touch. you can call on more than one day of the year.” she knew she’d have to be the one to call, and that was okay.

she had released him from expectations he could never meet. father god would be what she needed when others simply could not. and it was all right.

in her heart, the family name became honorable once again. she took back her maiden name, and it was good.

(copyright © 2017 jane doe)

 

 

the unwrapping

not long after they met, she began to see layers wrapped around him and weights upon his shoulders and back. the layers were like bandages wrapped tightly around a mummy while the weights were heavy, unbearable yokes.

the heaviness weighed him down and the layers restricted his movement and freedom, robbing him of the joy he had been gifted with in his mother’s womb.

she first experienced his joy at the airport as they waited in a long line. he was humming a happy little tune. she closed her eyes and listened when he first began. she felt herself becoming lighter. her cares were leaving. his joy was spilling over to her.

delighted, she turned to her left to look at him. “what is that?” she asked. he grinned and stopped humming to answer.

“it’s sesame street. the mahna mahna song.” she squealed in laughter. “what? really?? i love it!!” his humming had changed the atmosphere around them. it made her laugh and that shifted it even more.

during shared adventures, holy spirit told her about him. she shared with him what she could.  she told him about his joy, about the power it wielded against the enemy, how it would carry him through storms.

it was infectious with others, too. it broke oppression, pulling them out of their own pit so they could see, so they could breathe again.

she gave him oil to help him sustain his power. it was even called ‘joy.’ she wore it every day to maintain her own joy. everywhere she went, people asked what she had on. it lifted them. they wanted what she had, too.

the enemy knew the power of his joy. he came to steal it, to oppress it, to squelch it. and when the attacks came, he did not have the strength to put it on. his mind was attacked, his sleep was attacked. and it snowballed.

one afternoon, they went on a road trip. she could tell when he picked her up that something was wrong. she prayed in her thoughts. “holy spirit, what should I do?” he answered her quickly. “pray in tongues and touch him as often as you can.” this became her protocol whenever they were driving together.

christmas came. they went away for a few days. the enemy was not pleased he was with her light for an extended period of time. the battle intensified quickly.

she looped the same worship song in the car for three hours as they drove. “nothing is wasted,” by elevation worship. he drove, she worshipped, sometimes weeping. he was being unwrapped from bondage.

they went out for dinner christmas eve. she’d made reservations at one of their favorite restaurants. it had a view. their server seated them at the same table they always sat at. they smiled at each other knowingly. it was ‘their’ place. dinner was lovely.

they ate in silence, listening intently to the family behind them with the very bright little girl and her very british grandfather. memories were made at both tables that night.

later on, they settled in to watch a christmas carol. holy spirit showed her the weights on him again. she placed her right hand on his back in various places, and holy spirit gently removed several of them.

the intercession began soon after. she put on her ear buds and worship music. she took hold of his right hand with her left hand and held it tight as holy spirit moved.

her body shook and she wept silently as healing took place deep in his soul. he thought it was about her, and she let him think so. it was better that way.

the unwrapping continued. soon, he would be completely free.

free to see, free to hear, free to feel, free to live and free to love.

 

unwrapping
photo credit: pixabay

 

(copyright 2017 jane doe)

 

 

 

and so it went

they’d only been together a few weeks, still young in their relationship.

the end of this day found them at the marina for a walk along the river. after the walk, they settled on their usual park bench. they’d had conversations here before.

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photo credit: jane doe

he’d gotten more bad news. he was hurting. badly. his expression showed it. so did his body language. she could feel his pain.

he leaned forward with his elbows on his knees, head in his hands. she knew he felt defeated, that he had nothing to offer. she knew she would walk with him as he healed and learned his true value.

she rubbed his back lightly with her right hand. after a few minutes of silence, he slowly turned his head back toward her. then came the question. “what do you want from me?”

she drew in a breath and waited for holy spirit to give her words. “i don’t want anything from you until you’re ready. i promise you this: whatever the nature of our relationship,  i will love you fiercely.”

he had never heard anything like this.

she didn’t want anything from him and she would love him anyway. he had no response.

she had no more words. but she’d said it and it was out there.

and so it went.

(copyright 2017 jane doe)

 

access denied

she was out with her family riding bicycles. they were traveling a path representing rich history, riding from boston to lexington as paul revere had so famously done.

this day would also be marked in heaven.

as she rode, she released declarations of freedom and resurrection life to the people and to creation. she released ‘angels of original american intent’ to move, to act on the words she was speaking.

her words were powerful, full of love, purpose, restoration. and they did not go unchallenged.

the enemy sent troops to disrupt the work. it happened quickly. her best efforts to avoid the crash weren’t enough.

she had the wisdom and presence of mind to quickly reach out for prayer from friends. those prayers pushed back the demons’ intent to take her body and pieces of her soul captive.

one friend got on the phone with her and began to pray in tongues. she saw infirmity and trauma trying to enter through her knee. she commanded all trauma to be loosed from her friend’s physical cells. she commanded the ligaments, tendons and muscles to go back into place.

the assignment was cancelled, access denied. indeed, there was movement in the knee immediately. healing was occurring.

 

Access Denied
photo credit: pixabay

as they talked, holy spirit showed them how the plan and attack happened in the spirit. pride stood firmly in the man who wouldn’t give way on the path. his unwillingness to yield gave place to leviathan to twist her body and knee in ways they were never designed to move as she crashed to the ground.

holy spirit brought more revelation: it’s at the point of attack when trauma or injury occur that all demonic spirits attempt to come and attach themselves.

it’s also the place where we submit (accept or yield to a superior force or to the authority or will of another person) ourselves to god, resist the enemy, and he flees. it’s written and it is what it is. the power and protection available to us in coming under god’s authority is unparalleled.

this authority protects, heals and delivers all of god’s children, redeemed and unredeemed alike, to show them they are loved and cared for without limit.

and the same resurrection power that raised jesus from the dead exists in every redeemed child of god.
our bodies cry out for healing. they’re relieved when they’re blessed and prayed for because they desire to live, move, work and play the way father designed them to function.

there is no force than can stand against authority flowing from love and intimacy with father god.

time is not a factor in this process. god is not in time. jesus moved in and out of it.

he told us to be as he was in this world. this means we can go back to the time of the attack, be positioned at the point of entry and cancel that event. healing and deliverance occur.

when oppression is lifted and the blinders are removed, people see god clearly.

they see he is good. and always has been.

what the enemy means for evil, god uses for good.

(copyright 2017 jane doe)