Asking for help, embracing growth, and moving forward.
Caitlin Zick had a profound moment at the age of sixteen where God called her out of a crowd and her life was forever changed. From that moment, she began to discover who she was as a daughter of God, fall in love with Jesus, and realize the power of the Holy Spirit in her life. Caitlin and her husband Cole became directors of Moral Revolution in 2017 and openly share their marriage story and first years of sex in marriage to start a healthy conversation and begin to unfold God’s design of sex. They have been married and in full-time ministry for eleven years and have started their own little zoo, known as #thezickzoo. You can find their wild on Instagram with their little animals: Caleb, Connor, Cade and Chloé Rose.
Caitlin’s new book Look at You Girl is about seeing yourself the way that God sees you. People always ask Caitlin, “ how did you write a book? How do you have time to write you have 4 kids and a full-time job?” It’s really easy to make excuses and keep our capacity low. I’m all about high capacity and asking the Lord to increase. I hustled by waking up at 4:30 in the morning going to Starbucks sitting in a corner and working 2 hours for one sentence.
Caitlin opens up about how journey through counseling is a part of her untold story. It’s been a thing that has been shamed for so long, especially when you are in a place of leadership. We worry and think people view us as unqualified to lead if we are also in counseling. In actuality, we’re going after being healthy so we have the capacity to lead the way God has called and designed us to. The lies that kept Caitlin from seeking out professional help were, “my story is not that bad, other people have it worse, so I should just be able to get over it, clearly, I’m fine… I should be able to figure this out on my own.” Caitlin’s teenage years had a lot of promiscuity that led to trauma, that took longer to get out of than it did to get into. It lasted from 7th grade until 10th grade when she met the Lord. The pain kept her stuck even though she had done all the things “I needed to do.” Its what kept her stuck when she thought “I’ve prayed, repented, I confessed to a mentor, but I’m still not having healthy sex in my marriage”. It took her breaking through denial to reach out for counseling. Caitlin shares, “I knew God didn’t intend our marriage to be unfulfilling. Sex felt like a chore or duty it was not a bonding intimate interaction with my husband. When searching for a Christian counselor I was nervous because I had never seen a leader lead well in marriage counseling. In my first session, my counselor diagnosed me with PTSD. I only associated that with Vets coming back from war. She showed me, you had moments of pressure when you said no and felt trapped which lead you to do what you didn’t want to do. All these things that came out were things I had told myself to get over because I had put myself in those situations. There will be a million excuses to not go because it is hard work but if I wouldn’t have walked thought that pain I would not have the beautiful marriage and sex life that my husband and I have now.” The work of therapy is hard, but it is so worth it! Rebecca shares: “You have to put effort into your own recovery, into diving deeper into yourself and not being in denial of the character habits you have obtained that might not be healthy, enough to sustain the call that is coming.” Go to counseling so God can take you further, you won’t get anywhere if you get hung-up and things go unresolved. Forgiveness is the first part of the journey, healing and transformation is the next step.
God takes us on a journey, not an instant thing so that we can fully receive ALL of his promises. The hard work is worth it and helps you get to a healthier version of yourself. “You can’t walk barefoot for 10 years and expect not to have calluses on your feet.” The things we live through build calluses on our hearts, minds and emotions. It’s ok to admit that, and not be in denial. All of us have a story to tell. Don’t minimize what you have been through, dive deep and do the hard work. Making sure that you find someone who you can share your story with is so important, this is the first step to diving deep. Even if it’s something you said you would take to the grave. To find someone in your life that you can bring it to the light is a step to diving deep. Find someone who can tell you the truth, the things you need to hear and not necessarily want to hear.
Caitlin shares about the women who speak honestly into her life. “It happens in my core group with 6 women we meet biweekly and we go there.” We want to see ourselves clearly and our blind spots. Ask yourself: who in my life has an all-access pass I am going to share vulnerably but I also accept your feedback. Give yourself to process and ask the Lord about it. It’s helpful to correct our course when we are going away that we don’t want to go but we couldn’t see it and they could. “Honesty room”- Allows you to say to your friends what hurt you that they did so it avoids losing friendships. Ask: How did I become this way? Take it to God and allow Him to show you the things because it could come from the way that you were raised and He’s patient with you as you walk through it.
When you see from a perspective of how you were raised that can be eye-opening. Caitlyn states “It gave me permission to know this is why I have been like this but it also gave me permission to change.” Seeking professional help when it’s time but also important knowing that you can change.“Its that Surviving or thriving like we can survive in our brokenness and terrible habits or we can have that motivation or permission to thrive. To say you know what I could keep surviving in this but I would rather thrive and have the fullness of what God has for me so I can have the abundant life that He promised.” So many people are surviving in their brokenness because it’s familiar. – WOW how true is that? The root word of familiar is family so you end up surviving in familiar instead of breaking out and thriving in God’s fullness. The power of words. We need to speak what we want. It’s about receiving and declaring what you want for your life.
How long did it take to go from forgiveness, healing, transformation? Caitlin shares it her took a year and a half. Some of the reason was that they couldn’t afford it so she had to go biweekly or at other times she was breastfeeding and couldn’t go. She shares, “My biggest piece of advice is to take time to debrief with the Lord after and journal. Because I was a brand-new Mom I was going to counseling and then back to business. With what I know now I cut out two hours of time one hour with my counselor and the next hour with the Lord journaling and processing.” Accept the process for however long it takes. Transition your thoughts from I have to, to I get to. Then you can see it as I get to do this so you can be excited about it. Counseling is not shameful, it’s powerful. It’s you making the choice to find true inner healing, wholeness, freedom and the abundant life God has promised you and going after it. Not settling for surviving anymore but saying I chose to thrive and be motivated for the future generation to pass on a different legacy because of my hard work. Rebecca shares, “Getting caught in thoughts of viewing the lives of other people and they are thriving but I have felt the Lord tell me they are 5th generation pastors you are going to be ok, you are doing this for 5 generations from now.” Caitlins a first-generation Christian, so at times she struggles with envy and jealousy when she looks at the lives of others. “I am bitter that you get that mom and that history. I have to get real and mourn the loss of that. I don’t want to let the things I didn’t have I don’t want that to continue to impact me. I have never arrived the journey is better than the destination. I’m going to go after it so that it doesn’t get passed on. If doing it for yourself isn’t enough motivation look at your children and do it for them.” Just because you have the thought doesn’t mean you have to take ownership of it. You can dismiss it and say I’m not going that way. A way to think about having certain thoughts is “You get to choose come in and play or go away you can’t stay.” We have the ability to control what we think.