Out of Egypt

When a friend prayed with me a few years ago, she sensed she had a word from God she needed to share.

It was more of a question really.

It seems God was repeating a personal word I’d heard some time before from our Pastor, yet not fully understood or heeded at the time.

He asked, “Are you prepared to leave Egypt behind?”

As I prayed and puzzled over this, it soon became clear that ‘Egypt’ represented those things which held me captive, were enslaving me to some extent and preventing forward momentum.

Eager as I may have been to let go of them, in many ways they represented all that had become close and familiar.

For example, my childhood was riddled with abuse and dysfunction. I hated it but I knew no different.

Growing up under its shadow was all I knew to be ‘normal’, the very fabric of my being, a deep part of who I was as a person.

In order for full healing to take place, I needed to unearth the dark places in my soul, recognise the pain, address it with appropriate help and support, and find a way to live free of its effects.

It took many years of counselling before a large degree of emotional healing occurred in that area.

Now it felt like God was asking this question of my life in general.

Was I ready for seeing life through the lens of His word rather than viewing everything from my experiences?

Could I accept, believe and receive the truth of who I am in Christ?

By faith in Christ, we are:redeemed, renewed, radically and deeply loved, forgiven, free from guilt and shame, forever set free to live without walls, given every resource we need to be whole and healed….and so much more besides.

He longs for us to see ourselves in the mirror of His word rather than viewing the distorted images playing in our minds.

We all have areas in our lives which need transformation, change and healing.

Our willingness to allow access to them in order for healing to take place is another matter entirely.

I’ve written about this more openly and shared what is helping me in this post from Words of Joy.

The poem below is an acknowledgement of how hard it can be to move forward.

‘Leaving Egypt’

When the prison you know

has walls papered over

with past experiences

faded, worn and torn,

fraying round edges,

it can still feel cosy

warm and familiar

like a house,

a home boxed in

with hedges.

We cling to what we know

with surprising tenacity

in spite of pain

leaching into our souls,

a heavy weight with capacity

to drown us in

suffocate breath and life,

holding us down

hard and fast

in an embalmed state.

Leaving Egypt behind

to enter our Promised Land

can feel like strange unravelling,

so we dig heels stiff,

resistant, into hot sand,

with each tender step

we tentatively take

a reminder of how far

we still have to travel

for our safety’s sake


9 thoughts on “Out of Egypt

  1. Beautiful poem, Joy. I think we all have our Egypt. And as contrary as it is, it really is hard for us to leave it behind. After all it is what we know. And most of us are afraid of what we do not know. God bless and give you strength and courage to find your way to the land of milk and honey.

    • Hi Joanna. Thanks very much for stopping by to leave a lovely enouraging comment! You touch on the challenge we all face in moving forward ~ “most of us are afraid of what we do not know”. So true. Yet with God-given courage we can take the first step and then the next and so forth. And eventually we will find ourselves in “the land of milk and honey” of His promises. Blessings 🙂 x

  2. Dear. Joy
    Reading your post today was a gift straight from our Pappa. I have such a battle at the moment to take my eyes off some past abuse and to fix my eyes only on Jesus. I remember how at times the only verse that I could cling to, was that verse in Psalm 27 (I think) that says that even when your mother and father desert you, He will take us into His family. Great post, dear friend, and thank you so much for sharing your past abuse.
    Blessings XX

    • Dear Mia, I’m so pleased that my speaking out in this way has blessed you. The battle you speak of is a recurring one, isn’t it? I know how it feels to revisit the past. Keeping our eyes fixed firmly on Jesus is the only way to get through these times. We always have the reassurance of His continual Presence, love and support to give us hope and a future. Blessings of peace and strength to you, my friend. 🙂 x

  3. Yes; Joy, I echo what others have said here. I too have an ‘Egypt’ – for me it was a slightly different picture. I felt that God was saying that ‘I have stayed too long on this mountain’ – and indeed it feels as if I go round and round and pass the same landmarks… I too want to strike out into open sand and trust the Lord to get me where I need to go.
    ‘A strange unravelling’ is perfect. I feel that I am coming undone, but I know that however strange and uncomfortable it might be, He will put me back together.
    Thank you. Elegant and powerful, as always.

    • Helen, our desire to “strike out into open sand and trust the Lord to get me where I need to go” is always tempered by how much we allow hesitation, fear and dread to hold us back. You speak faith filled words by declaring, “He will put me back together”. Yes, indeed! And it is faith and trust that will enable us to become unravelled before God tenderly puts us back together again. May you know His peace, my friend, as you co-operate with Him in the process of change. 🙂 xx

  4. Pingback: A new identity | Poetry Joy

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