“When the river runs away, I find a shelter in Your Name.  Jesus.”
~ Fernando Ortega in “Sleepless Night”

I remember what if felt like to be a little girl.

Sitting at the table of my desk.

Writing hard into the pages of my journal.

Because there was no other place for me to be.

No other place to hear my thoughts and seek some sort of answer in the silence.  My heart poured out in ink — like the first waters of spring trickling down through moss, rock, and dirt as you walk by and notice the trail is suddenly moist and soft.

I know now, that the door that closed me in the darkness of my bedroom wasn’t the only door that shut me into my aloneness.

The door of my heart was where I hid behind, where I placed all my anxious thoughts and concealed them deep within.

So, that I could step out into this world with brightness, to smile, explore and find my way.

I needed a place to put away the things that felt childish, needy, and wanting.

I was ready to grow up, to find my place in this world.

I believed that was where Jesus wanted me.

Out there, somewhere, I believed Jesus was calling me —

to leave who I was,

so I could become who He wanted me to be.

But, now I’m hearing a different Voice speaking beside me.

Before The Red Sun Rises

I’m still here, Bonnie.

I haven’t left you alone.

I remember you.

His voice is very still.

Very quiet.

But, I know it is Him.

Because I feel my heart flutter an aching dip — deep in a place where only His voice can reach.

My lips begin to quiver and I say His name.


I close my eyes, and a sleepless night clings to me yet again.

Long before the red sun rises.*

Even though Easter is this very week.

I feel the guilt of how I am not feeling the freedom that I know is wholly mine.


Don’t let me hide any longer.


Help me find my full voice.  I’m so afraid.

Because it is hidden behind closed doors.

Life On The Other Side

I get up, bare feet cold against the kitchen floor. I warm up a bowl of soup.

I sip and sit, the steam rising from my spoon, illuminated by the low lights turned on over the sink.

I begin to type, journaling onto a glowing screen, as I don’t know what else to do.

And as I do, I feel so very lonely there in the dark.

And in that very moment, when I’m slipping into the rush of my worries, a thought takes me to a scene with the disciples.

They are locked in room.

They cannot sleep either.

Unable to fathom what life would look like on the other side of the door.

They are afraid.

Feeling trapped.


At a loss for words.

Yet, their hearts and minds were overrun by questions of  now-what, what-if, how, when, who and why.

But, still, there is no easy way out.

Even though Peter and John had both seen the linens discarded in the tomb.  They too had retreated behind closed doors.

Without clarity.

They’ve never gone this way before.

They were so sure, so confident of the way Jesus was leading them.

Now, uncertainty is all that seems to consumes them.

So unexpected.

So all alone.

How Jesus Comes

This is how He comes to them.

Jesus comes to them — not just behind closed doors.

The doors were locked.

This is how I imagine Jesus came and quietly stood beside them.

With eyes of compassion and a heart bursting to touch them, Jesus whispers — “Peace to you!”

And what was the first thing Jesus does?

Jesus shows them his hands and his side.

Jesus shows them his wounds.

I don’t know why I did what I did next, exactly.  But, I felt moved to get off my chair.

I knelt on the floor.

With the taste of soup still swimming in my mouth, I press my face into the palms of my hands.

And I begin to cry.

I imagine Jesus right there in front of me.

Bending, crouching over me.

As I show him my wounds.

And I cry and I cry, as waves of memory upon memory push through my heart.

Each time I’d stop because I wanted to go back to hiding my heart, I’d picture Jesus again.

Showing me his wounds.

On His hands.

And His side.

And the tears would begin again.

Because I would remember what I’ve forgotten —

how much I longed for the touch of His hands on mine,

how much I’d give anything to be pressed into His side,

so I could feel the weight of His robes and His arms around me then.

Where We Can Hide

After some time there, I needed to get up and find the Kleenex.

I know Jesus came to me that night, as He once did 2,000 years ago.

And I am so grateful.

Because He continues to come to me now.

Even through locked doors.

Jesus knows how to enter.  Even if I don’t.

Jesus is the name I can call on.

Jesus is my hope through the storm.


He is the shelter — where I can hide.

And you can too.


“On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together,
with the doors locked for fear
Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!”’
After he said this, he showed them his hands and side.”
~ John 20:19-20a 


How is Jesus coming to you this Easter?

Where are you when you call on His Name?

Where is that you hide — when you think the door is closed — and Jesus comes to you?

Is it a song, a place, a time or are you walking, writing, painting or singing?

Pull up a chair. Click to comment.    Take a moment to share.  In doing so, Jesus comes alive.

Easter in us — in me and in you.  Jesus in us.  Right here.  Right now.  


* A lyric taken from “Sleepless Night” by Fernando Ortega.  Click to listen.

By Bonnie Gray, the Faith Barista, serving up shots of faith for everyday life.

Join Bonnie and faith friends on her blog, Faith Barista , as she continues her journey through post-traumatic stressas they travel the journey of faith together, swapping stories one moment at a time.


Photo Credit: atasteofsummer via Photobucket.com




  • Katy


    Oh my goodness, you have no idea how much I needed to read this today!! I am in this place right now myself, just looking for Jesus amidst everything….I am so glad that He came to you during such a difficult time to comfort you! And I love your locked door analogy–it’s true, He can come to us no matter what’s going on! This is truly a beautiful post–cathartic to read! Thank you so much for sharing! I think about you so often and pray that God will continue to guide you through your journey right now–you are such an inspiration! Many blessings and hugs to you!

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Dear Katy, how special it is to share in a moment together. So warmed to read your words. Thank you for being here this morning. May you continue to feel His nearness in you. Blessings!

  • Pingback: Beyond Locked Doors: Jesus, Where Can I Hide? | Faith Barista()

  • http://walkingwellwithgod.blogspot.com Bev Duncan@ Walking Well With God

    What beautiful imagery…I could feel your anguish. Yes, Jesus comes to me in good times but He also steps through locked doors when I am caught in the snares of anxiety and depression. I believe that it is in the hard times that we feel and know His presence so intimately. Thank you for your post and sharing your heart!!

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Thank you Bev for connecting with me in this stretch of this journey. Jesus is near – His presence is a blessing through you.

  • http://hopeingodforever.wordpress.com Katie

    Dearest Bonnie,

    I am so grateful for your heart as you share yourself with us in your words. But more I am so grateful that Jesus goes beyond the locked doors and shares himself with you/me/us. He is breaking walls down and helping you see yourself and heal. I know this. I am there with you praying for you, wishing I could come spend time with you in real life, but I am there in spirit. And God is going through my locked doors and walls also.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      I’m grateful for your heart, Katie — and for the journey you are living — you are a living prayer.

  • http://heartfulmemories@wordpress.com jan

    ” I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently will find me”. Proverbs 8:17

    How wonderful it is that he rose again so we can know his love. Thank you for a beautiful post Bonnie.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Beautiful, beautiful verse. Thank you for sharing it here with us, Jan!

  • http://cometomyrescue22.blogspot.com Julie

    With the help of a godly and anointed therapist, my carefully locked doors are opening one by one. I did not realize how far I had barricaded myself into hiding or that even though my heart was beating and I took a breath every few seconds, I was barley alive.
    And now Jesus comes to me in the most unusual places…and ordinary but forgotten memories of little me will come in full color and sound and smell and texture. They always make me stop in mid-motion, whatever I am doing. And it is there that Jesus has His moment with my heart, to tell me that even though I left the little girl behind, He has not forgotten her. She was real and she mattered. These in-the-moment memories seem to be His way of bringing me out of hiding. They cause me to step forward to take a closer look. To set down my bags of groceries or close my book…..and there in the memory is a kid who I thought I had buried alive in wet sand but is now very much alive and free.
    I’m right behind you, Bonnie…. or maybe we are walking side by side. Thank you for letting me walk with you as you literally share your journey with us in these posts.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Oh. Julie. You know this journey. With Jesus. Through locked doors. Holding you tight – hugging as sisters in Christ. I see Jesus in your words.

  • Maria Chambers

    thanks for sharing your heart about hiding behind closed doors, and walls of protection. We are usually there because we have been hurt deeply, and had some difficult experiences that have left us vulnerable and afraid. To know that Jesus wants us to come out into the light and fellowship with other women is so encouraging and the TRUTH that He will be with us to walk in Freedom . With love and thanks. Maria xx

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Beautifully expressed, Maria. Thank you for this.

  • http://www.heartchoices.com Debbie

    Your words were so descriptive I felt like I was there with you Bonnie. As you know my heart had been sheltered for far too long. However, it is opening up and risking. I’ve found that I can experience love so much more when my heart is opened. Jesus gives me His strength and His love as I learn to trust Him more and more.

    Jesus has been using the children I work with each day to remind me that He never forgot my heart’s desire. As I look into their sweet faces, I see how open they are. They are so trusting and they want to learn. I want to be like the children. I want to be open to what the Lord has for me.

    Blessings and love,

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      I want to be like that, Debbie! But, oh, the way of the heart opens us deeper into unchartered territory. Grateful for the kindess of your presence, as we walk the way of the heart with Jesus.

  • http://www.annaradchenko.net Anna Radchenko

    gorgeous photo. lovely words. blessings to you.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      So special to savor a moment together. Thanks for being here, Anna.

  • http://www.tjsmhanesfamily.blogspot.com Stephanie Hanes

    I just love the pictures you paint with your words and that beautiful exposed heart of yours, Bonnie. Your words are balm to my own still healing wounds. I’ve been struggling with nightmares that are really exaggerated real life events that still linger with the same pain and hurt. I wake up in a sweat, bolt straight up in bed, crying and shaking, wondering if it was real or just a dream, unable to shake the heaviness that rests in my heart. My husband notices, sits up with me, and the only way I can fall back asleep is in his arms as he prays over my hurts and anxieties and reminds me that He is always there, even, as you said, behind locked doors. This week, I’m taking a step back from social media and listening for His still, small voice to meet me right where I am and wash me over with a peace that surpasses understanding. Thank you so much for sharing your words and your heart here in this space.

    • Beth Williams

      Praying you meet Jesus this week & get relief from the nightmares of past!

      Holy God–surround Stephanie with your loving arms & let your tender mercies flow into her heart & heal her from the past!


    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      Dear beautiful Stephanie. Take the time off, assured you are thought of and remembered, as you care and tend to that beautiful heart of yours. You are courageous for following that Voice in you — Jesus — to listen, as you feel His prompting to investigate and go where these nightmares and hot flashes and heaviness that is pressing on your heart are leading you. We will be here. I am praying for you. Thank you for sharing openly right where you are journeying into. Give yourself permission to take as long as you need. Love you, friend.

  • http://www.heavensreef.blogspot.com Maxine Gonzalez

    Lovely words and awesome post…. HE is in my writing daily. HE speaks to me even in my dreams with words put together. Sometimes I don’t understand…but HIS presence is so felt.
    Isn’t it wonderful that when we SEEK HIM – we find HIM!

  • http://belovedhopeendures.com melinda

    The Passover Lamb is coming through my shut doors, as I bury my face in my palms in tears over memories, bowing before Him all wounded, and with fsilure and fear. He is revealing who I am in Him, Who He is too us while writing blog posts, and my manuscript all alone. Reaching out to show His wounds to me and others through grace words I find I am not alone. We are not alone. Praise the Lamb of God.

  • http://belovedhopeendures.com melinda

    Looking for a Kleenex for tears of joy in reading your “beautiful heart” words. So grateful for Bonnie Lord and the gift of words you have given her.

  • http://findingtheinspiring.blogspot.com Angel @ Finding The Inspiring

    I read this through tears because I can relate. You asked us to comment about how Jesus was meeting us. Recently, I experienced His presence through a song. He knows what we need, just when we need it. If interested, I wrote about it here: http://findingtheinspiring.blogspot.com/2013/03/what-easter-means-for-worn-and-weary.html

    God bless you!

  • veronica

    This was great encouragement. As I read Jesus coming to you my heart just felt warm and knew he had come to you. And that’s what he does we go and cry and he comes with this peace and a gentle touch by him in the midst of everything that goes in our life. Thank you soon much for sharing this love it. May God bless you.

  • Patti

    Hi there,
    Thank you for the picture you painted with words. It truly caused me to pause and sense His Presence with me and allowed His Love to wash over me.

  • http://gingerrwade.com Ginger Wade

    I have only recently started to get to know you through your blog, and I cannot express the beauty of what it means to see your heart so transparent before your readers.

    You have, and continue to, receive His love so fully and have shown such grace through your experience.

    May this blessing of His peace continue to overshadow and equip you as you pour out that love to others.


    • http://www.faithbarista.com Bonnie Gray

      So grateful God’s connected us. Thank you for the kindness of your encouragement and being present, Ginger. God’s love to you.

  • http://www.murmursofmyheart.wordpress.com Kristen

    Amazing, amazing, beautiful post. It is so true how Jesus can meet us deep in the hurts of old memories and He wants to; then He can free us from that pain that still lives in our little girl hearts.

    Bonnie, thank you for your bravery. Keep seeking after Jesus in the pain. For there is freedom underneath all those layers.

    As for me I have to say that Jesus is meeting me in His Word. It’s like I’m seeing new things in the passages that I have read over and over. His promises are *so* amazing and incredible – if we could only grasp the huge significance of what He says and believe it! I think in the past I would say, “that is a beautiful promise, but it was for the Israelites, or for this or that Old Testament character” . However, I am learning that every promise of His is for us too! I am praising Him today for His amazing Word that is living and active and full of amazing promises.

  • Lynn Bowman

    Holy, Holy, Holy are You, Lord God Almighty! This is the song on my heart as I read your words, Bonnie. Our God is Holy and He is ever-present. Though we try to lock Him out, especially from those places we want to forget or not allow people to see, He is there! In all His Glorious Splendor!
    I have failed so far on my Lenten journey, but this week, this Holy Week, has been really doing something to me. I find myself crying as I read the account of Jesus during this time. All He suffered for me……for us. He knows these human pains we feel, for He has felt them. And that’s the beauty of Our Savior, both human and divine!
    I pray you will continue to cry out to Rock that is higher than I (us)! He loves you and He knows all about you. Your words are so beautiful and that can only come from a heart that loves our God!
    Be blessed Bonnie!

  • julie

    Bonnie, You continue to bring your raw self to us, and, in doing so, you bring to us Jesus. Only He can open doors of grace and possibility that men have closed and only HE can shut doors of shame that keep swinging wide open in our anxious thoughts. He is the door. You are his vehicle through which I can see Jesus in my own pain. Thank you dear Sister!

  • Beth Williams

    You have such beautiful artistry in your writing!

    Touched that you were able to see Jesus in the midst of your trial and have Him comfort you! I usually try to find Him first thing in the morning in a dark room. I go & pray about my day & seek Him before the madness of a busy day begins!

    I’m seeking Him, not for myself, but for friends going through such trying times in their lives & asking for Easter Miracles to happen for them!

  • Gwen

    When I try to be with Jesus the way man says it must be done, its forced. I’ve read my Bible, since age five, I’ve sinned, I’ve repented, I meditate on His Word, I when moved without warning, I just know, I share Jesus and pray with strangers along my path, I pray with family and friends, believers not all…but when I try to remold this very close and intimate bond with Jesus my Savior, be part of a group that gets all intellectual about it all– I feel nothing. I know Jesus. I know Him. He is here when I’m alone. He is here when I’m confused with my result of a TBI. But my love and feeling about Jesus does not change…the longer I’ve loved, the more I vividly recall. Soo I remember walking as a child and singing, holding out my hand for Jesus at age five singing And He walks with me and He talks with me and He tells me I am His own. I love Jesus. I believe in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. And my relationship is not forced not intellectually explained. It simply is.

  • http://- Liz

    Dear Bonnie… this is so timely. The first few lines froze me because I was like that little girl too…. me and my journal. I truly felt I couldn’t be me in any other place. I’m much older and married now but still feel the loneliness and the hurt from so many unhappy memories… and still feel like I haven’t found my voice or full purpose in life. I know Jesus is still the same and has been there all along though I’ve let all else choke me. Literally… I’ve felt my chest hurt too sometimes!
    And I was reading all my childhood diaries about 2 hours ago. After so many years it was shocking to see that all the helplessness I felt then I still feel and its painful to recognize how much they’ve scarred me.
    I need to remember His wounds too for every hurting wound in me… where else can I hide. Jesus loves us so relentlessly, thank you Jesus. Even though I feel so undeserving and unworthy of it. I know many of us struggle with that feeling but maybe some feel like me? That ‘I’ve got to be the worst among all’?
    Haven’t been able to bring myself to sit and pray yet… coz I probably will start crying again.
    Thank you for sharing Bonnie. May the Lord heal you too and give you peace.

  • Kristy Lynn

    Thank you Bonnie! How beautifully put that we can trust Christ in showing Him our wounds because He has shown us His wounds, wounds that were made for us in the first place. I have been going through a season of healing myself from a lot of hurt from my childhood and my marriage. Healing from the lies spoken over me, healing from the utter destruction that was done to my heart and spirit. I have been trying to surrender every one of these lies and hurts to the Lord because I too know that my freedom has already been secured and fully paid for. This Easter season is such a great time to lay it all at His feet because He bore the price with His own flesh that we might be free and whole!! Much love and blessings to you always for sharing your wounds with us so that we may all grow stronger and freer in Him!

  • Marinalva Sickler

    I don’t know if I read or if I cry. It’s a hard week for me. I’m sinking inside. One year without Paul; missing my children; waiting for a guardianship trial on April for the custody of my grandson. I want to celebrate Christ ressurrection and the passing of His blessings in my life.
    Thank you for let me know that I’m not alone!

  • Dee

    Jesus comes to me as the spring this Easter. The birdsong in the trees and flowers peeking from beneath the unexpected snow. The surprise of a small, bright violiet laughing in a pot left outside during the winter is a bright promise that life continues even through the dark, cold times when life seems so bleak. The world is awakening to the color and music of spring. I hide my sad feelings because they won’t completely leave me and no one really wants to hear them, but Jesus understands that some wounds take time to heal and He’s patient. I’ll pick out more flowers to add to the pots and feel His presence all around. The beauty of the earth fills me with hope. My prayers for you continue, and it will be so good to hear more of your story and how God is bringing healing. God bless and keep you. :D

  • Adam

    I can’t tell you how many times in the past few weeks your posts have spoken directly to me, to what I’m dealing with. I was feeling so overwhelmed tonight, and saw that you had a new post up. His voice through your words came through so clearly and powerfully to me. I hadn’t even realized that I’d locked the door tonight…but that’s what I’d done. Sitting here worrying and wondering about what ifs and reading your post tonight just drove home the point that I need to always, always, always take it to The Lord. Thank you for your words….thank you for being open to sharing what God puts on your heart and how he’s working in your life …. He’s using it to help many others as well!

  • Theresa Ware

    My whole life I have felt alone. Even in a room full of people I have felt like I was seperated from the crowd. I have been married 27 years and have felt more alone then I want to admit. Door’s that I have closed because it was to painful to face what was going on around me. Only since I have seeked the Lord with all have, all that he given me have I found rest in his arms. He has opened my heart to love like I have never loved before. And is healing my heart where it needs to be healed. Thank you for your words today.

  • http://www.juliesunne.com Julie Sunne

    So beautiful and open, Bonnie. When we drop to our knees in surrender, He presses into us. Sweet surrender and sweeter communion.

  • Libby

    I have had these moments too and the tears are flowing now remembering. Isn’t it just like Jesus to do that? Come in beside us – behind closed and locked doors and show us his wounds and hold us while we show him ours. What a beautiful picture. It hadn’t dawned on me before that this is what he does, but it’s so true! The way that he invites us to share all and commune with him as he himself shares all with us.
    Thank you again for journeying “out loud” with us in this way. It’s a gift and I am thankful for you sharing your voice.

  • Kiah

    That was one of the most Amazing and Impactful things I’ve ever read!!! Beautiful, yet so revealing. I’m actually behind closed doors feeling exactly this!! Thank you Bonnie, thank you Lord!!!

  • Kiah

    That was one of the most Amazing and Impactful things I’ve ever read!!! Beautiful, yet so revealing. I’m actually behind closed doors feeling exactly this!! Thank you Bonnie, thank you Lord!!!

  • Christine

    Peace be to you, Bonnie. Enjoy this Easter like a rebirth and a lightening of the heart which you need. Rejoice in that one day. Much love to you.

  • Pingback: Middle Sisters’ Recommended Reading: Reading Links — Middle Places()

  • http://None Wendy A

    So many years hiding behind locked doors, despite wanting to be with Jesus with all my heart. But slowly, slowly, day in day out, He softens and calls us, to pass across those impossible chasms within ourselves, created by the wounds endured. In prayer Jesus once showed me how He wrote His words on my hand, in order to communicate with me, because I was deaf, dumb and blind (emotionally, mentally, spiritually etc.,) as a result of my wounds. This Easter He says I HAVE LOVED YOU SO LONG and I am able to know He has. Bless His Holy Name.