Last Tuesday I met twelve women—twelve broken women who have long forgotten the days of innocence. They look to a woman of faith. One who can lead them to dream again—and still believes in Dandelion Wishes.
Lesley Glenn’s dandelion wish is a prayer for God to use art therapy to restore women to their true identity and walk in God's destiny for their lives.
This post is dedicated to Lesley and the twelve women I met that day.
The storms of life crashed in all around them. Thunder claps shook their very existence. Hopelessness reigned over them day in and day out. They had not weathered the downpour of rejection and abuse well. Their only shelter from the storm was in a rehab center just outside of town.
I let out an anxious sigh as I stood in the plain and worn out activity room of the rehab center. Assisting my friend I nervously set art materials on the tables. One by one, women, young and old, entered and occupied a seat— restlessly awaited the art therapy workshop to begin.
As the women began their first therapeutic art exercise I prayed silently God would calm my nerves. This was new territory for me. I knew brokenness, but not to this extent. Taking another breath I remembered what my friend said earlier, “Come with all your senses”. I wanted to numb my senses more than awaken them—it was only an hour…I can do this for an hour. I prayed a silent prayer and dared myself to allow God to open my eyes. “What do you want me to see, Lord?”
As I looked with eyes wide open the Lord showed me I’ve seen these women before. Not these in particular, but ones who were also beaten down from storms of life. Sadly, I saw them only in my peripheral view. I intentionally shifted my head to look away and pretended they didn’t exist.
I could no longer ignore them. Twelve of them sat in front of me—their presence demanding for their existence to be acknowledged. I felt the Lord’s heart beat for them. He gave me the courage to look them in the eye—and smile. The Lord’s love for each of them welled up in me as He quickened my heart—
They are no different than you.
It was true. These women were broken—just like me. Desperate for complete acceptance—just like me. Crying out for someone to believe in them—just like me.
The Lord’s words stayed with me. Remorse filled my heart as I realized somewhere along the way I labeled these broken women unworthy—even unworthy of a smile. My heart dropped. I know what it’s like to long for acceptance—and yet I did not extend it.
Forcing myself to stay engaged and present, I watched my friend talk to the women. She connected with them—looked them in the eyes and listened. They were drawn to her because she accepted and believed more for them.
The women continued to quietly create and bring color to the canvas of their lives—Colors of healing and hope. The storms of life may have had them down for awhile, but healing was at their fingertips. As I watched the movements of their hands move the colors back and forth on the page I was beginning to believe restoration was happening right before my eyes—
and even within my own heart.
Do you accept unconditionally or selectively?
How do you want to be accepted?
How do you want to be accepted?
Here or somewhere…be real.
Share your journey.
What Love Really Means By JJ Heller