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How to Heal: Living an Exposed Life

Updated: 2 days ago



Do you ever get the sense that something crazy is about to happen? You don’t know what… but you’re ready for something UNEXPECTED. 


Just recently, I woke up, and I had the feeling like something incredibly good was about to happen that day. I had no idea what it was, but I just felt it coming. 


I went throughout the day, and nothing overly exciting occurred. In fact, it was a very average day. By the end of the day, I had to lie down for a few hours because I was dizzy (lately, I’ve been experiencing dizzy spells). 


And then I got this sensation in my throat. 


You know the feeling you get when you’re about to vomit? It felt like that… only spiritual. Something spiritual was coming up. I was about to deliver up, or expulse, something. 


I prayed about the dizziness in my head. I’d started asking God if it was merely a physical experience or if there was something spiritual in nature about it. I got the sense there was. 


So as the dizziness came over me yet again, I prayed against any confusion or “spiritual dizziness” that might be over me. 


Do you know the “foggy brain” feeling? When it feels like there’s this cloud over you and it’s not emotional but over your mind? There’s something you’re missing that is just out of grasp of your understanding, but you have NO IDEA what it is, because it’s a BLIND SPOT. There’s a gap. You know there’s something you're missing, but you don’t know what you don’t know! There’s something blocking your discovery. 


I started praying for sight. The ability to see my blindspot. 


As I lay in bed—dizzy—and started to pray, a picture filled my imagination. I wore a heavy canvas robe. (A smock, for all the artists out there.) The fabric was so HEAVY. Symbolic of my current state. 


I NEED TO TAKE OFF THE HEAVY SMOCK. 


All of a sudden, I felt pain in my chest. The memories came sweeping in. And I got transported. 




Time for a story from my past. 


When I was little, I lived in Seattle, Washington. I started getting chest pains. We saw a few doctors, but no one quite understood what was going on. The stabbing pain started around the time the chaos in my home began. 


Now I know—the sharp lightning jolts to my lungs were symptoms of a word I didn’t know yet as a nine year old. Anxiety


Washington was the birthplace of my anxiety. 


My parents didn’t have jobs, so we’d go to foodbanks for free food and churches for hot meals. We rubbed shoulders with people on the streets. The undersourced. The unhoused. Little Alyssa. I was very timid, very shy, very worst-case-scenario insecure and afraid—I felt anxiety


Fast forward to July 31, 2023.



A year ago, on my birthday. 


My older brother, Hudson, was praying for me. He told me there were still a lot of problems in my life that needed healing. 


I was SURPRISED. God had already showed up in so many ways during the past year. There’s more?


Yes. 


“God wants to FINISH inward healing”. 


Whoah. Again, SURPRISE. This time, for another reason. Finish? Like, finish finish? Is that truly possible? 




Ripping open the band-aid. 


If I have learned ANYTHING, it’s this. Healing comes through exposure. 


Got scrapes, scratches, slits? Dirty, bloody, throbbing?


RIP OFF THAT BAND-AID. SCRUB THAT WOUND WITH WATER, WITH HYDROGEN PEROXIDE, WITH SOAP OR SALT—WHATEVER YOU’VE GOT. 


We cannot leave our wounds hidden to fester. We’ve got to uncover them. 


Do you have areas of weakness, insecurity, fear, doubt, sensitivity? If so—you might be thinking: Enough symbolism and hypotheticals! REAL LIFE. How do I practically live an exposed life in the day to day? 


Here’s what I’ve got… REAL-LIFE EXPOSURE means revisiting places of vulnerability and hurt IN FAITH that God is my protector, provider, deliverer, and healer. 


HERE is how that has looked practically in my life. 

  • I had beef with missions. 

  • Fear and panic tied up with being financially unstable. 

  • Baggage with my own leadership potential. 

  • Hurt from my time in Asia… specifically Thailand. 

  • Trauma from moving. 

  • Childhood pain living in Washington. 



But. Here’s what exposure with FAITH looks like. 


I realized I had all these areas of weakness, fear, doubt, insecurity. I wanted healing. So, I REVISITED them. 


ONE: I joined Youth With A Mission (YWAM)

  • Missions. 

  • HUGE financial risk and vulnerability. 


TWO: I went back to Asia


I knew I’d be going back to Asia. And I wanted that. Because I wanted the chance to rewrite those narratives previously developed through the lens of brokenness. I wanted faith to rewrite my narrative. I wanted the chance to see God as protector, provider, deliverer, healer. 


When I returned home to Asia for two months, I fell back into both missions and leadership with all the challenges and wonder and beauty. 


I returned to Thailand. 

When I did, I experienced so much healing and freedom. 


THREE: I moved to Washington

AND THEN I returned to the USA, and God told me to move. TO WASHINGTON. 


I made the move! But I had to fundraise. I got the money for my gas and travel expenses the day before I left. (THE TRIP WAS GORGEOUS BY THE WAY.)




Life currently.


Now, I’m living in Washington again, just an hour or so north of Seattle. Living and working and studying with YWAM North Cascades. Interning with a few care facilities for the unhoused and under-resourced populations… sound familiar? ;)


I’ll be completely honest. There have been moments when I’ve felt like I’m standing in my nine-year-old body and it’s the old feeling of heart beating frantically in my chest and I get that fear feeling and I don’t know why. 


But I reminded myself. I’m here. I don’t have to panic. I don’t have to be afraid. I am safe. I am actually completely protected by God in this moment. Even if I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will be okay, because Heaven is with me and taking care of me. He has a THOUSAND MILLION TIMES, and he will infinity more. 



SO. It’s in the revisiting. 


A tiny speck of faith. 


And a desperation to see God through the lens of Father, protector, provider… that healing—that shedding off that giant smock, old childhood weight, names, loads, burdens—COMES THROUGH. 


I am finite, weak, and needy—so that I may become absolutely filled by Heaven. Dependency produces provision and provokes and grows faith, because when I need to see God come through, when I am desperate, I place all my bets on God. I give all my coins at the altar like the widow in Mark 12:41–44. I lay it all out there, and then all that I have is God’s. All I’ll have to live from is God. Then, God will become my everything. And I will be filled up from God, with God. 


1 Kings 8:27—The heavens cannot contain God. 

Jeremiah 23:34—He fills the whole earth. 

Acts 17:24–25—He fills us with life and breath and everything else. 


Are there areas where you can't see out? It feels like you’re sinking? Blow the battle horn. Proclaim the victory you can’t see yet. Like Juneteenth—the Emancipation Proclamation had already been signed. But the full effect of freedom and deliverance finally came when hundreds of thousands of enslaved people were finally effectively liberated. 


The document has been signed. Declare it. Pray it out. Believe in it. Our victory. 


HE is our victory. The person of Jesus Christ. And the power and presence of him filling us. 



Back to the beginning.


Lying there in bed, praying. The dizziness, the confusion, everything else. All of a sudden, I felt something shift. My focus was directed from my circumstance to my victor. 


Why? I raise my battle shofar. I pray. I declare. That is my power. That is my faith stance. That is my activation of walking in a victory not yet seen. 




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