When I wrote my last article I was set on it being a single stand-alone article. I wasn’t going to write anything further. I was sharing my heart and the victory that can come from the hard internal work and that was it.
When I hit the ‘publish’ button I knew it wasn’t the last article. Somewhere inside of me I heard ‘you need to share what it looks like on your battlefield.’
I sat there for 20 minutes praying about whether or not I even wanted to share the actual article on my feed. Or just leave it floating in the internet clouds like so many things I write. I never planned to write a visual description of one of my personal battlefields.
But here we are…
I am about to let you in on what exactly my battlefield looks like. I have several. This is just one of many. Sometimes they are single battles, but don’t let it catch you off guard if during this tour, another battle from a field in the distance comes and fires a shot in the middle of an attack.
It’s been known to happen.
Here is where I give you all the warnings. We are in the middle of a war and all war’s require armor. Since this is my personal war… the armor is specifically designed to fight my enemies… and this is the training I went through to get prepared.
And read some more.
Once I realized what was going on internally, that I was literally under attack I headed for the bookshelves. I read anything I could get my hand on that remotely spoke to me. I started with ‘I Declare War’.
I actually read books on fighting wars and then moved on to books about how the brain works. How we can reprogram our brain and the thought patterns by working on what we let it think about.
I then read massive books on motivation and building myself up… and moved straight on to books about leadership.. and what a good leader is. Physical books and audio books.
I then read more personal motivational books. And every day I would turn on YouTube and flood the first part of my day with positive motivational ‘I can do it’ type video’s. I turned up the volume and let it sink in.
I sought out self-help, motivational, life-coaches online and subscribed to them online so they would flood my social media feeds every time I logged on.
This is what I learned:
The brain can be reprogrammed. We aren’t stuck with what we continue to dwell on. But reprogramming is HARD work. For every 1 negative thought, I need 5-10 to just even it out.
Read that again….
Because, for every negative thought you allow yourself to think…. Just to cancel that thought out… you need 10 positive thoughts!
Meaning if I was going to be victorious over any single battle I was going to need massive positivity.
I read books on leadership, because I needed to be the commander of my battles. I needed to be the one that took charge and led us onto the battlefield and over the victory line. I can’t do that without knowledge of what a good leader looks like and how they act.
Because it took me so long to realize I was actually at war there were several casualties already left on the field. So I had to work double time to carry then off the field. Tend to their welfare and nurse them back to health.. and for some.. I had to be willing to let them go. Cry the tears for them… and say the proper good-bye’s.
I had to mourn the losses… while still fighting the fight.
Which meant.. I had to get stronger. FAST!!!
The story of this battle we are visiting is as follows:
While going through my divorce my sister chose not to speak with me. I have been removed from her world. Without reason.
This is the carnage so far…
Because I don’t know the reason as to why she no longer talks to me my brain is left to wonder. This is dangerous territory…. Remember the 1 negative 10 positive rule:
What did I do that would cause my own sister not to want to help me? Be with me? Comfort me? Did she ever love me? Was she just tolerating me? Did I say the wrong thing? Can family be this thin? Forgettable? I thought family was for life? Why isn’t it for life? How can blood be so thin? How can blood disown blood? If my own sister can do this to me will other’s? How can I trust again? Did I give her the wrong gift at Christmas? Did I say something wrong? Did I copy her hairstyle? Does she hate how I talk? Do I remind her of failure? Why doesn’t she care enough to check on me? Am I unlovable? Is it that easy to throw me away? Am I discard-able? Will everyone discard me? Why should I even bother? Why do I care? Should I care? How do I stop caring? Why does it seem so easy for her to erase me? Am I erasable from the rest of the world? Good lord, does everyone think this way of me? Do they all just tolerate me? I don’t want to be a bother to anyone! What can I do to earn people’s affection? How can I help me to like me? Will everyone leave me? If I show my problems will people just leave me? What did I do? What can I do differently to make her like me? Did she hate me my whole life? Growing up flases before my eye’s.,, Maybe if i wouldn’t have wanted to play with her barbies she would have liked me or loved me? All those times I rescued her during her surgeries… was she just using me? I thought I knew her? This isn’t what I thought I knew. Was she just playing me? Is everyone just playing me then? Using me? How do I act in a crowd now? How do I build a relationship? Why bother trying to build a relationship if the other can dissolve me so quickly? Why am I having such a hard time with this? Why can’t I write her off? What did I do? How can I fix this? ….
Standby for a moment.. while I battle a few things internally here. Here’s a pretty picture of a Dalia to look at while you wait:
This is where I remind you to stay alert. Shot’s come from all side’s.
Don’t worry, I got your 6 here.
The carnage is everywhere. I am left not knowing and my brain is trying to process information so it can seek healing… or enough information to begin the closure process.
As we step onto the battle field we realize we have Confidence in the corner hiding. She can’t understand so many things that have been ripped away from her. Her once solid foundation if now damaged from the attacks and she doesn’t know how to rebuild.
We grab the back of her jacket and drag her off the battlefield. The good news is she is still alive…. The bad news is she will be carrying the scars for years. It’s a good leaders job to guide her through the healing process. For now, we just get her off the field.
It isn’t too much farther onto the field that we find Esteem. She is barely breathing with a slight pulse. She is weighted down with so much baggage entangled in her heart that we aren’t sure she is salvageable.. But as her commander we recite the motto… ‘No soldier left behind’. We grab her by the feet and drag her back to safety. Her head bouncing on a few rocks as we duck the bullets overhead. We leave her just off the edge of the battle field under a bush hiding from everyone around. We mark her location and are determined to get her back. For the moment we hear screams…
We’re going back in….
Doubt is in the middle of the field. She has no cover and she is crying. We can hear her cry’s as she slowly advances… ‘is this even worth it’
The bullet “It’s all your fault” is launched over her head following right behind it with “you are worthless”.
The good news is she is still advancing. The bad is she is slow… inefficient and on the verge of giving up. We grab her face between our hands and pull her up to meet our eyes….
Another bullet “Why even bother” flies between us both. It almost grazed us.
Strongly we look into her face and say, “You got this. Hang on and keep going this is worth it! I promise you!!! DON’T GIVE UP!!!”
We feel her perk up as we let her go…
we have no idea why we told her those words. Our promise was full of hopes and dreams and unicorn sprinkles. But it was all we had at the moment. Because off to the right of us is Trust. And she is laying face down.
Is she breathing?
We rush to her side. Bullets launched in mass as we approach her.
“Just give up” “No one loves you” “Your own sister didn’t even love you”
And then it comes. A missile from another battle field…. “Your ugly and worthless” “No one will ever love you” But this battlefield shot the wrong missile’s. We’ve already won over these missile’s…. We pick them up and look them straight in the face and with mass determination and scream with clarity!
“I am not ugly!!! I am not worthless!!! I am LOVED!!! I am the daughter of the ONE TRUE KING!!!!!” and we throw it off the battlefield. Our divorce battle should know better then to attempt an attack from the past!
We reach Trust. She is not breathing. She isn’t moving. We stop and weep over her. The carnage is too much to bare. How do we rebuild all of this? How do we rebuild Trust?
We find the strength and hoist her frail body up and over our shoulder as we call out to God for help! We turn and slowly, as if you are in a movie (cue the music) fling her over your shoulder as we aim our weapon towards the enemy… and we continue to fire…. as we advance.
Because that is what leaders and survivors do!
We full on advance… as we fire the shots!
“God chose me!!!” “He loves me” “He knows every hair on my head, have you read Luke 12:7? I am worth more then sparrows!!!” “Matthew 6:26, Look at the birds, I am more valuable then they are!” “Joshua 1:9 be strong and courageous. Don’t be afraid The Lord is with me!!”
We keep advancing, “You messed with the wrong woman!”
We carefully put Trust down at our side… Steady your feet, slightly bend your knees… lean forward, inhale, aim and fire….
“Psalm 27” We warrior scream… “You deploy your army against me… My heart will not be afraid’ though a war breaks out against me, I will still be confident. The Lord is my light and my salvation. I am not afraid!!! God alone is my Fortress! He protects me!” We recite not from memory not in order but from the heart… We make the words our own and as we empty our final clip you slay the last demon “I am loved!!! I am worthy!!! I am the daughter of the one true King and He alone is ALL I NEED!”
As the last enemy falls to the ground we slowly holster our weapon. Wipe the tears from our drenched cheeks and drop to wrap our arms around Trust. She is gone. But We. We are not.
With our tears falling freely, we allow yourself to grieve the lost of her once innocent ability to trust. The trust one only has for your sister.
Slowly we wrap her tight in our arms and stand. Turning back toward home we carry her lifeless body as we whisper to her. “No soldier left behind!” We begin our walk to bringing her home.
We know this battle isn’t over. They will regroup and set up a new plan. And we will once again arm ourselves.. there is no time to waist. We must go right into training for the next attack. We can’t stand to lose another warrior.
With Trust firmly in your arms you tap Doubt on the shoulder.. “We won! It’s time for debriefing” She lowers her weapon, kisses Trust on the forehead and walks beside you.
You motion to the bush where Esteem is laying. Doubt reaches in and lifts her over her shoulder. You both continue.
As you reach base camp you prepare for the proper mourning of Trust. You must allow everyone the chance to mourn over her loss. But you know it can’t be to long that they get weak.
Confidence is waiting at the door. She has rested enough to gain a bit of strength. She see’s Trust’s lifeless body and quickly rushes to grab her.
The evening is spent going over what happened and were they could have gone wrong.. they know the next battle will be tougher without Trust by there side but they immediately go into researching how to rebuild her.
It’s at this moment, when the battlefield is the quietest that if you listen closely, you can hear it…
They follow their leader… Gently, softly ever so faint you hear each one of them whispering….
“I’ve got this” “My hope is in You Lord” “I will follow You!” “I am enough in this world” “I can do all things through Christ who Strengthens me” “I am beautiful!” “I did nothing wrong” “Life is worth Living!” “They hated You before they hated me” “You are worth following!”….
They know… they have to counterbalance each negative shot that hit them through the battle with 10 positives…
They recite continuously, reminding themselves that they are worthy and chosen. And in the moment a negative thought attempts to sneak past the walls…. they aim up and take fire with quick positive rounds in rapid succession.
The enemy is real. The battles while they may be inside our heads are battles that are to be fought. We are made for more in this world… if we truly believed that, we would be living it out-loud with our own personal full on victory cry!
My battlefield is different then yours. As yours is different then anyone else’s. The words you use to build yourself up will be unique to you. The weapons you use must be hand made, sought out and internalized for them to work. This isn’t the time to shoot a half-hearted barely believed statement over the bow… The enemy wants that.
The enemy wants you to think that it’s everyone’s fault. Your fault. That people are worthless. It wants you to give up.
But you know this is your battle. The damage that is done to you seeps into every aspect of your life, infecting others in ways you never intend. So to keep the external carnage low, you must do the internal work.
It’s as you are doing the internal work you will find that God is sending you people along the path to pick you up and help you rebuild. Allow them. Allow them in and around you to love on you. But don’t stop doing the work. It is your job to continue the fight so they don’t become carnage in your battlefield.
Together, through community you will find healing.
Together, through community you will be able to help others.
This is the time to do the work. Seek the books, listen to the podcasts, watch the video’s and fill yourself with such amazing positivity that when the arrows come flying…. you can catch them with your bare hands.
Soldier on…. To victory!
At this moment I would like to give you insight. Just before I started the proof read I went downstairs and asked my husband to drop what he was doing and find me a battlefield scene on YouTube. My only request was it had to be a scene where someone was fighting and carrying a solider while fighting… He knew nothing else of what I was writing… He sent me the clip above a few moments later. And as I watched it I marveled over how amazing our God truly is… that he provided the most perfect video as to what our actual battles look like.
I am off to spend the day with my man and fill my mind with positive thoughts of just how far I have come…. and how much strength I have gained from all the work it has taken. Don’t give up!