Thank you for coming back for the next step in our journey. We are going to dare to go there. Together, we will explore the movie clip-like lifetime of memories in your mind and find the parts that helped build your wall.
In case you missed it, you can read my introductory post here, where we begin this journey together.
Feel free to copy this image of the wall and paste it into a Word document or Paint. Print it to use with pen or pencil, or simply keep it on screen and edit it digitally. Begin to fill in the bricks of this wall with the words and the names of the things, situations, and people who helped you harden your heart. Can you name them?
Maybe a Timeline will work. Draw a horizontal line with your birth date at the extreme left end and today’s day at the other. Draw vertical line ticks to indicate a timeframe when something significant happened in your world. My first memory is when I was roughly 18 months old. I remember going to look at our house with the realtor before my parents bought it. I was 3. We moved to Pennsylvania, 400 miles away, when I was 9. All of these transformational events have helped to shape who you are. What emotions come up for you when you think of a certain time period of your life? Was there a babysitter or a teacher who made it intolerable? Were there endless summer days at the community pool or the nearby creek? Let these images come to mind to help your ability to recall. If vivid details lead you in this direction, write a mini autobiography.
By now, you may have identified your parents’ divorce when you were 7. You may remember that sports season when you broke your arm and had to sit on the bench. Maybe you have listed a school bully or someone else who has hurt you. Your wall is most likely filled with lots of yucky words and painful memories for you, but there is a way to take down that wall. It may have protected us for a time, but we will be fine rebuilding it more healthily.
Before many of us built walls, we were hurt. You can easily argue we were hurt because we were vulnerable. Maybe we trusted someone or at least thought we could. Most of us never had good boundaries because, well… most of us were raised by parents with poor boundaries, so we’ve all spent some time being doormats. We have no sides to retain anything we need. People walk all over us.
One day, we seem to wake up and look around at all the ways we are being stepped on and recognize that it does not feel good, so we build our wall! We need our wall! There is no one else out there who can protect us. But unfortunately, our walls make people have to rappel their way into our lives. That’s a lot of work to expect from someone, isn’t it?
I remind my clients to picture themselves as a cup – a vessel that can hold Love and pour it into others while allowing others to pour in. A cup has walls to keep the good in and the bad out. Be a cup.
This exercise might take a few days, but when you are ready, pray Psalm 139 over yourself. When you are done, meditate on the words, “see if there is any offensive way in me,” and let the Lord bring your wounding, as well as the Offenders of this wounding, to the movie screen of your mind. Write them down over the course of several days, and try to let your feelings rest about the list you have created. Remain centered and grounded. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that you are safe. Until next time, Philippians 1:3.
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1 You have searched me, Lord, and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue, you, Lord, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.
7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there, your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God! How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you.
19 If only you, God, would slay the wicked! Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
20 They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord, and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22 I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them, my enemies.
23 Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Danielle has strong roots in Taunton, Massachusetts, as well as Milton and Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. Still, she currently enjoys the Mission Field of Scranton, Pennsylvania, and the Pocono Mountain Region just beyond. Danielle identifies as a Survivor but also as a Perpetrator. For the past 9 years, she has worked on her role as Recoverer and now begins her journey as Healer.
Ms. Murphy has had the honor of helping to raise 4 extraordinary human beings: Darianne Marie Scott, Ellen Althea McCormick, Julian William Francis Scott, and Zoe Renee Scott.