When Story Heals the Wounded Places

remain tight

How do you act, what do you say, when you feel nothing? When the hurts have ripped carmine-red, when the bad news and  lame excuses echo empty, but the tears have dried?

Whoever said words don’t hurt, they lied.

There is a pain that worms its way into our hearts and relationships, our very lives, everything that hits our world filtering through it’s stain. But we cloak it well, don’t we? We step into our daily routines with our false faces and silent words. Words that carry the bud of release and freedom if we would only allow them to bloom. Words that hold a beautiful, redemptive hope.

You may or may not know, I’ve recently released this book, When A Woman Finds Her VoiceIt’s about overcoming these hurts that shut our mouths, about releasing these words tucked deep inside and allowing them to sprout healing and hope—not just in our own lives, but in the lives of others.

Since this book has released, I’ve done a couple of media interviews and in those interviews a couple of hosts have chosen to go deep and real and raw, and they ask sincerely, “Why did you feel it was important to tell your story with such honesty and vulnerability?”

Why did I? Why do I?

These aching-heart stories {mine and the other brave-hearted ladies woven throughout the book}, they aren’t meant to sensationalize, but rather are meant to carve hope in your heart if you’re still one hurting {or if you are walking the journey with one hurting}. For yes, my story is one of brokenness and dysfunction, but it’s also one where God’s grace runs deep, and these threads of brokenness, they are cocooned with a loving God who longs to be more important to me than any explanation as to why something happened.

So my story that’s shared? It’s sort of my resume. Hopefully what makes me relatable just enough for you to know I “get it.” I’m gut-transparent about these cuts on my soul because I’ve benefited from the healing power that lies in this sort of exchange. Those times others have shared the messiness of their lives, those were the times I finally realized I wasn’t alone. The times I found the courage to confront my own mess.

As I share how God lifted me above many of life’s painful hurts, I hope my story somehow leads you into your own safe place, one where you confront your own lingering hurts. For it’s often those time we hear others say what we cannot that we somehow start to make sense of our own pain.


There is a divine hope that lies within our hurts.

God uses the shattered heart of one to mend the brokenness of another,

uses me to help you, you to help me.

And this God-centered pain changes the world, one woman at a time.


Today we’re linking up around the topic of speaking up for others. Proverbs 31:8 calls us to “speak up for the people who have no voice … (MSG).” I’m wondering, is there a time your own words have helped someone else? Or maybe a time someone else’s story has helped you?

I also ask you to consider something dear to my heart, those who can’t speak up for themselves—the abused women who are being ignored, the young girls sold into the sex trade, the mom who just buried her child and can’t find hope because she can barely lift her head, or the young child who is indeed alive but has no mom or dad or relative around to care for her. How can we speak up for these, those without a voice?

Would you share your story with us—how a voice has made a difference for the down and outers? There are a few ways you can participate today:

  1.  Share your story by linking up a post you’ve written around this topic of courage {but be sure to mention our link up or use our button so we can stay in community}.
  2. Please share your heart about this post, or the topic in general, in our comments section below. I write these words so that I can connect with you. I want to know you, what your heart feels, and your words that need to be heard.
  3. Share our graphic and this link up with others on social media.
  4. After you’ve shared with us, be sure to go back and visit a couple of the bloggers who have also shared. Peek in on their stories, their hearts, and enjoy the connection with other link-minded folks.

7 thoughts on “When Story Heals the Wounded Places

  1. Jo Ann – what more could be said my friend, you are an inspiration, a breath of hope that many of us women crave. Thank you for leading us into freedom. you ROCK!!!

  2. Jo Ann, I am seeing more willingness to disclose. I am seeing more wilingness to take risks and expose the pain we carry in our hearts and I lay claim to 2 Corinthians 1:3,4 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”

    • Yes, I love that promise Kimberly! That comfort we have tasted, that we would pour it out rich to those who have not tasted . . . that is God’s design. And I thank God for your heart that shares authentic with others, modeling beautifully this Comfort-share. Thank you. My heart is yet burdened for those who have not found this ability to speak up, to speak out, or for those who are in a place where they simply cannot. And you and the others who use their voices to this end warm my heart deep. You are awesome.

  3. Our voices – so powerful when we use them to speak for those who cannot, for those who feel voiceless and if we remember the times when we, too, were forced into silence, then we can stand with them, lending our voices to strengthen theirs and we all can be heard. I NEEDED this. So much. Bless you girl.

    • This is why we remember, friend. Yes! Thank you for sharing. Thank you for your passion to make a difference. For you are, making a BIG difference. <3

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