Leslie’s Journey – Taking Her Life Back


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How often do we  get through life pushing our past into dark hidden corners, stuffing it into tight spots, shoving it into closets praying no one will ever find the secret fear, shame, and guilt the past harbors?

Survivors of abuse, any abuse, are pro’s at shoving, stuffing, and hiding… and then we are shocked when we realize the ugly remnants of our past have actually seeped out into our reactions and responses over the past 10, 20, 30 years. So we finally talk about it.

taking back your pastOur voice arises from the dark hidden places and much to our surprise we realize how freeing it is to be heard. We desire to conquer the past, to put it behind us once and for all, no longer harboring any undo fear, or guilt and shame that is simply not ours to store and carry.

When this process takes place, this is when the survivor moves to thriver. And it’s a beautiful sight.

This week I have the great honor and blessing of joining one survivor, Leslie, on a journey of taking her life back. She’s unearthed her past, spoken on the various abuses she’s been through and finally wants to face head on the one incident in her life that had held her captive for many years.

LeslieFlakeWe are going to the mountains in Colorado where Leslie was abducted and held for five days. It was around 1984, 24-year-old Leslie applied for a job through an employment agency working for a new car dealership in Amarillo, TX. She was under the impression she was to help go to car auctions and drive them back to the dealership.

Having landed the job, Leslie, along with two other young women and a young man (under age, 17 who had lied about his age to get the job) headed out to Colorado with their employer, David Benz ( who at the time gave a fake name).

Traveling the ten hours to Colorado no one suspected that the man behind the wheel was a convicted kidnapper and rapist. He had escaped from the Pueblo Mental Institute out of Pueblo, CO.

Place a period where God placed a commaFor the next five days these young people were held captive in the mountains of Colorado. And this week, Leslie and I are going back to the area she’d tried to keep hidden in her past for so long.

Join this brave survivor, as she takes back her past and courageously reclaims her present and future.  Where we will be staying might not have the proper internet to be able to post … please stay tuned as I plan to help Leslie capture this time in the way she sees fit to share.

Leslie newspaper story



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