I had just had a Holy Spirit moment the previous week. If you’ve had one, you know what I’m talking about… If you haven’t had one, I pray you do. For me, it’s an almost audible voice speaking to my heart, sometimes followed by a physical “showing”. To say I was moved by the experience would be putting it mildly. I needed to “hear” from God. And He showed up.
I minister to a woman who has had a lot of trauma as a child. She has struggled with depression and suicidal thoughts, always feeling as though everything is her fault and that she’s always in the way. She struggles to hear God as she grieves the childhood she never had. I told her about my Holy Spirit experience; and together we prayed that she would have one also and that He would breathe new life into her. She desperately needed to hear from Him.
That morning, we were preparing for a seminar being held at the Center that weekend. My co-workers and I were searching for napkins and coffee stir sticks. Certain that I knew where they were, I opened a closet that had one lonely looking box on the shelf. “Where the heck did we get these? I’ve never seen them before,” I said, laughing as I showed them the contents - colorful balloons, an air pump, two candles, and two candle holders. Not exactly what we were looking for. Neither of my co-workers had seen them before.
Within the hour, I was listening to the woman as tears flowed from dark places in her soul. Mourning the loss of her childhood is slowly validating her self-worth and importance. It mattered what happened to her. It’s not easy facing truth. It’s not easy to refuse the anesthetics we all use and move through emotional pain. But until we do, it chases us. Someone once said it is that which we avoid that will most tyrannize us. The lesson I learned long ago continued to be reinforced… You cannot love pain out of someone. But it is so important to be with them as they go through it.
She pulled a handkerchief out of her pocket. We go through a LOT of Kleenex at the Center. I jokingly tell supporters of the Center that we should’ve bought shares in the Kleenex Corporation long ago. She had never used a handkerchief before. I looked at it. Then I looked at it again. It had pictures of colorful balloons all over it. “When did you start using handkerchiefs?” I asked.
“I could feel something in my pocket,” she said. “I thought it must’ve been a Kleenex. This is so strange. I used to use this to wipe my kid’s noses. How did it get in this jacket?”
“Just wait here a minute,” I said, a little hesitantly. “I’m not sure what’s going on here, but I’ll be right back.”
I retrieved the box from the closet; my co-workers giving me puzzled looks. But they both could sense something was happening.
As I opened the box in front of her, I looked at the handkerchief, then at the balloons in the box. She did the same, her eyes growing wide as she made the connection. Even the colors of the balloons were the same as that on the cloth.
“I think God is talking to you…” I said softly. “I think He wants to breathe new life into you.” A person can’t do that themselves or have another person do it for them. It has to be Him.
I took the two candles out of the box, put them in the candle holders and lit them.
“What happened to you when you were two years old?” I asked.
“I don’t remember it happening, but apparently I was hit in the head with a 2 x 4 accidentally when I went somewhere I shouldn’t have been.”
“That sounds awful!” I exclaimed.
“Yes, but I was also told that it was my fault and that I was always getting in the way.”
She took the air pump and one of the balloons and filled it with air. I thought she would tie it off and leave it filled with air. But she didn’t do that. Instead, she let the balloon go and laughed as it flew crazily through the air. She gleefully went and picked it up, blew it up again, laughing as she let it go all over again.
“God wants you to feel the joy of the childhood you never had…” I said.
“Can I take the balloon home?” she asked with a teary smile.
She desperately needed to hear from God. And He showed up.