A Poem by Lisa Enqvist
Waits beyond the mountains
I refuse to hear
I refuse to see
All that I am
Someone listens, nods and smiles
Understands my pain
Torn up roots and broken branches
and grow again
This poem was written by Lisa Enqvist in 1962, describing the power of Christ’s listening ear in her aunt Göta Wallenius (born 13.3.1913 and died 12.2.2003). Lisa said her aunt helped her survive, just by listening.
I so longed to reshare my dear friend Lisa’s poem today, as it fit so beautifully with what God had shown me through my daughter yesterday. It felt like God’s listening ear to my freshly pruned life also, as it did to Bettie, when I shared it with her:
Our youngest looked out our window and said: “Mum, isn’t our tree so pretty with the leaves. Why does Papa even cut it right back. It’s so ugly like that.” I told her it was to keep it healthy and help it to grow.
She then asked: “but why aren’t the trees on the other side of the street cut back like ours?” I told her: “that’s a good question. I guess different trees need different things.” Then, I asked my husband about it and he said: “Our tree is a grafted tree – the branches were grafted in and so it needs to be cut right back to the base every two years.”
“right back to the base” wow! We are grafted into the tree of Jesus – and so we need to be cut right back to that base (Jesus) too – crazy thinking about that needing to happen every two years. Not just a slight cutting back but right back to the base. This is SO encouraging to me here in this place – I pray it blesses you too, together with Lisa’s poem and the song Bettie shared with me that God gave her in a night full of pain, to comfort her.
Father, thank You that You always hear our hearts. Thank You for sending Göta Wallenius to sit next to Lisa and listen to her aching heart. Thank You for binding up and healing Lisa’s broken branches and for replanting her torn up roots into Your heart and affections for her. Thank You for letting her poem fall on my own freshly pruned branches and dangling roots. Thank You for reminding me of how you once sent a Finnish woman my way also to clasp my hands, invite me to share my story and weep with me.
I invite You now to multiply Your living witness and testimony through Göta and Lisa. Let their testimony become Your listening ear to many other hurting hearts and souls. Replant each of our dangling roots into the good soil of Your heart and loving affections for us. Show us how each uprooting and pruning is growing our delight in You and uncovering Your true heart and affections in us. Grow bountiful leaves of healing and abiding fruit from the branches you have cut back. In Jesus’ mighty Name, Amen.
As a teenager, Lisa Enqvist decided she would never be a missionary, never return to her father’s Gospel ship “Ebeneser,” never marry a missionary, never have kids who might feel as rootless as she was. And, she prayed, “Please, God, don’t ever send me to India.” But God knew Lisa better than she knew herself and gave her what her heart truly desired: all the things she asked Him not to give her, healing her heart more and more through the process.
Lisa is a co-founder of a Children’s Home in Thailand. She grew up in China and Sri Lanka as a missionary kid. She now lives with her husband in a small town on the West Coast of Finland. She and her husband adopted four Amerasian children in Thailand. They have given Lisa and her husband Håkan eleven grandkids.
Today, Lisa writes personal and family stories based on saved letters, documents, and personal memories. Since receiving her mother’s old letters in 1983, she has written four memoir books in Swedish and one in English: MISSIONARY MOTHER – Around the World with Five Kids. Rheumatoid Arthritis has challenged her since writing her first book.
Lisa is a registered pediatric nurse. Her earlier writing experience consisted of newsletters to sponsors of children at the Bethany Children’s Home and regular letters to family and friends scattered around the world. She has saved numerous family letters.
She attended several Swedish writer’s seminars in Finland. After reverting to English in 2011, she completed a course in writing for children and youth at the Institute for Children’s Literature and a Memoir Writing Course at Creative Writing Now. She also wrote articles for FaithWriters Challenge.
She is a member of Everything Memoir Private Group and West Coast Christian Writers. She has attended two Online conferences with the WCCW.
Her book MISSIONARY MOTHER – Around the World with Five Kids, is available from:
and other online bookstores.
Lisa blogs at: https://lisaenqvistroots.com/