I heard the audible voice of God at 12, convicting me of my jealous heart. I was 14 when I heard another voice, a lying voice, an accusing voice. I was walking down the hallway of our home; at the end of the hall was a mirror. I saw my reflection, and in a split second, I heard, “God doesn’t love you” It was a whisper, and it was convincing. I stared at myself and saw nothing but ugly. Hate for myself enveloped me, and from that point on, I became uncomfortable in my skin. My insecurity turned to sheer disgust of myself. I was trash. Unworthy. Unlikeable. Unattractive. Unredeemable.
No other voice sounded as convincing than that one. I truly felt the words penetrate my young heart. My countenance changed. My attitude changed. My friends changed. I felt black inside. So what happened from the time I heard the audible voice of God to this moment right here?
I had a few incidents in my life that placed me on the side of having no voice. Touches that were unwanted and betrayal from those trusted caused me to sink into myself. I had my first boyfriend at 14. I didn’t know what to do with his hands all over me. I was paralyzed in fear to speak up. He won’t like me if I say something. And Oh, how I wanted to be liked and feel pretty.
The voice that declared over my life, “God doesn’t love you,” felt right. It felt true. I was dirty and filled with shame. I was unlovable. And the secrets were too humiliating to reveal. The reflection in the mirror became my enemy.
For about a year, I felt lost. I don’t remember much between 14 and 15, except I wanted to die. I suffered in silence, not knowing that I had parents warring over my life—a father who began to reach into my world and take me on father-daughter dates. Every weekend we would go to a flea market or a thrift store. We would get frozen yogurt. And my Fathers presence and consistent love began to pull me out of my tar pit, one day at a time.
I didn’t know it at the time, but now that I am a parent, I see it; God revealed to my dad I was drowning and needed help. My father began to speak over me in casual conversation. He listened to me when I talked about my dreams, things I liked, and so on. He sat with me, ate with me, shopped with me, and never once did he preach to me.
My eyes are brimmed with tears as I write this memory. It was the voice of my father, his whispers of life, and his constant way of reaching me that brought me out of the dungeon of self-hatred.
I turned 15, and I genuinely don’t know when things changed in my heart. It wasn’t a big alter moment. It wasn’t a big revelation. It wasn’t a prayer meeting. No, it was much more. It was a constant flow of living waters. It was declarations of my father’s words over my life. A persistent presence. A continuous “I love you, a bushel and a peck” that he sang over me.
One day at youth group, my godmother/youth leader saw me and looked me in the eyes and said, “There’s my Holly.”
I can still remember the moment she saw the cloud was gone. And because she saw it was lifted, I believed it too. And I have never looked back since that day. I live under the sound of my Fathers voice, His declarations over my life. His whispers that He is still speaking, songs He is singing over me. The mirror never tells me what is true; it only tells me what I think. But God, the one who knows me best; His Whispers of what He sees, His words of who I am, that is my truth! Do you Hear his Whispers?
Side note- It took a year of my father speaking life words over me to undo one lie of the enemy spoke over me.
“Even King David himself speaks to us regarding the complete wholeness that comes inside a person when God’s powerful declaration of righteousness is heard over our life. Apart from our works, God’s work is enough.”
Romans 4:6 TPT