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Finding God Everyday Now Found Blog

How to Find the Redeeming Value

Do you like to use coupons? Some people make it into a sport all its own. I don’t go hunting for them, but when they show up in my mailbox from my favorite store for my most-purchased items, that’s a game-changer. It’s amazing how these little slips of paper can save so much money!

Let’s say I have a coupon for $2.00 off a pound of coffee. How much is that coupon worth?

Well, the paper and ink are nearly worthless. According to the teensy-weensy fine-print, a coupon is worth approximately 1/100 of $0.01 – a hundredth of a penny! Good enough to catch a piece of used gum. Not much more. And yet this worthless piece of paper will somehow save me $2.00. How? An exchange must be made. I must surrender it for the coupon to be redeemed.

A redeemed coupon – worthless when it’s stuck at the bottom of my messy purse – is exponentially bumped in value upon surrender.

Is there anything in your life experience that you look back on and think, “That was worthless”? Loss. Heartache. A bad choice. Illness. Tragedy. Just as worthless as the drops of ink are on that slip of torn paper.

What if there was a value to be discovered only through redemption? What might happen if you took that worthless thing and laid it down once and for all in nail-scarred hands?

My coupon worth 1/100 of a penny is valued at $2.00 only upon surrender. Its value increases 20,000 times through surrender! Imagine the exponential return of value upon something we call worthless when placed in the hands of the only One who is capable of redeeming!

In 2006, I was diagnosed with a chronic illness that would shake everything I understood about my own health. It would threaten a shortened lifespan by 10-20 years. It would daily threaten to take my very life. It would interfere with clarity of thought and convenience in living. It would steal finances and sleep and the loveliness of ignorance of such a reality. Worthless…right? What a waste!

Two years later, on my knees in a messy puddle of tears, I handed this worthless mess over to Jesus. I heard simply, “I have healed you.” What could that mean? I still face the physical facts every day that seek to convince me of the inherent worthlessness of this reality. But through that surrender, I have experienced the most surprising redemption.

Death threatens daily. God has redeemed me with fulness of life, recognizing even more the value of the lived moment.

Fear threatens to smother. God has filled me with a peace beyond what makes sense that my body is most secure when surrendered to Him.

Brain fog and fatigue threaten my calling to communicate. God redeems by using the very thing which threatens to be a powerful testimony of His goodness.

People look and wonder at why He hasn’t healed me yet and I look at them and say, “He already has. And He continues to do so.”

A worthless, torn slip of paper surrendered to the hands of One with authority to redeem can reveal a miracle. Within each so-called worthless thing is a hidden, exponential value.

What worthless situation is God asking you to surrender today?

 

Everyone needs a healing touch, whether in a physical, soulful, or spiritual way. While there can be frustration in facing a chronic issue, hope can be yours in the waiting. For more, get your copy of Chronic Healing today!

 

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Finding God Everyday

On the Other Side of Our Excuses

Do you ever feel like an opportunity is too much work? Too many hurdles to overcome? It would be better to just skip? Maybe it’s just me.

I knew days before that the meteor shower would happen in the wee hours on Friday morning. But the idea of rousing myself, much less my children, at the insane hour of 1 am was simply too much. So I scratched that off my planner.

We needed our rest, after all.

My husband would be away that night for work, so I wouldn’t have any help dealing with the kids and getting them back to bed.

I don’t function well when I’m tired.

I don’t like the dark…or the grass…or bugs in the grass.

So many excuses…ahem…reasons not to.

By the time Thursday evening rolled around, I’d completely forgotten the foreshadowed night display. But sleep would not come. Hours slipped by. Eyes wide open. A friend posted a song on Facebook that captured my heart – one of my all-time favorites – “Adagio for Strings.” I let the strings lull my body to calm. And at the height of the piece, like a burst of light, my memory jogged. Nearly 1 am and there I lie, wide awake. And I thought…why not?

Pajama-clad, I stepped onto the dark patio and looked up. No streaking meteors. But the stars, they captured me. God stoked my soul with the heavens of His majesty. I couldn’t wait to show the kids!

When I tried to wake them, my daughter, surprisingly, got up quickly, excited, wrapped in her cozy blanket. My son, stuck in his sleep, refused to get up. So, a mommy-daughter date it would be.

The ladies of this house don’t care for the dark. Or shadows. Or unidentifiable night noises. But suddenly none of that mattered as I lay our softest blanket like a bed on the grass. We rested, snuggled, and waited.

In the waiting, I felt my tension. As eyes adjusted to the darkness, I realized my flexed muscles held stiff, my tendency to want to hurry the moment along.

Then I saw it! A shooting star careening through the heavens. My heart leapt in wonder. My body began to relax. There we cuddled together on our blanket-topped grass, watching fiery meteors streak across the night sky – perhaps about 20 flew by during our 45 minutes outside.

What if I had allowed the hurdles to get in the way of that moment with my daughter? What would we have missed out on and not even realized?

In those wee hours of the morning, God captured my heart – so serious and task-oriented of late – and restored a sense of awe. Gazing at the vastness of even that sliver of sky, I sensed my smallness, yet His profound love for me. Hurdles faded away. Excuses evaporated.

And another meteor shot across in blazing glory.

What opportunity stands before you today, just beyond a hurdle? What beauty? What wonder?

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Chronic Healing is NOW Available! When does a chronic condition open the way for God to move miraculously? Courtney shares her raw testimony here of living with Type 1 diabetes in the midst of experiencing a healing God. Order your copy today!
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Finding God Everyday Freedom | Identity Now Found Blog

Chronic Healing is NOW Available!

A chronic condition is persistent, ongoing. And for physical, chronic disease, medically speaking, is usually incurable. Facing my own chronic issue has been a decade-long struggle. I’ve wrestled with scriptures and promises of healing, coming to realize deep-seeded beliefs about God as Healer.

As He’s shown me more of Himself in the midst of my circumstances facing a chronic condition, I’ve come to see how healing can be chronically (persistently, continually) received.

My most vulnerable and nakedly raw book, Chronic Healing: Hope and Healing For Body, Soul, & Spirit, is now available. If you face any kind of ongoing circumstance, be it physical, soulful, or spiritual, this book is for you!

Order your copy today!

 

Also available at Amazon, BarnesAndNoble, and Google Play!

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Finding God Everyday Now Found Blog

Gear Up To Declare

This blog is nearly 4 years old! And I am readying to attend the Declare Conference for the 4th time – that place where I’ve gone to find rest and inspiration to continue on in this bloggy space. Where women gather to worship. Where friends find one another for the first time. Where the #digitalevangelist is equipped.

To gear up for this year’s conference, attendees are linking our digital arms and answering a few questions…So here we go!

1. If we were meeting in person, how would you introduce yourself? Wife to Steve, homeschooling mama to two (so far!), writer, speaker, editor, writer’s coach, and native Texan. I’ve always been an old soul, an avid reader, a lover of music. Although I’m an introvert in need of recharging time on my own, I love people – meeting, encouraging, diving deep.

S & C in Vail

2. What is your favorite thing to write and why? I love writing nearly everything. But books are my favorite, by far! I enjoy the long-range project, the life-message, the time spent with God processing on paper. My first book  – Refining Identity – a Bible study, a discipleship journey. My second, an ebook – The inTentional Mama – a super-short and practical read to uplift mamas everywhere. My third releases in ONE WEEK! Chronic Healing follows my journey living with a chronic condition, walking alongside the Lord who is my Healer.

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3. What is your favorite thing to read and why? Can I just say ALL the things? Articles and blogs, commentaries and Bible reference, Christian novels, Christian inspiration, classics of the church fathers and mothers that challenge me to go deeper. I wrote recently about the books I couldn’t stand to part with during our recent move. Give me words to read, to ponder, to apply, and I’m generally content to sit for hours [if anyone will let me…ha!].

4. If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be? Have my pre-dawn writing time followed by listening to waves on a beach, toes in the sand. Dine slowly at delicious, local restaurants with people I love. Hold my hubby’s hand. Kiss my daughter’s freckled face. Tickle my son. Nap. And read.

5. What’s one thing you love about your blog and one thing you’d like to improve? I love this space dedicated to finding God in the midst of everyday life. I love the freedom to express, to share, to challenge myself and others. I’d like to tweak a few things to make the site more aesthetically pleasing and current.

6. [Lightning Round] Would you rather…

Read on Kindle or paperback? Silly question…paperback! Pen and coffee go with my reading time.

Drink coffee or tea? See above =) Coffee, for sure. But I don’t mind a cup of tea in the evenings either.

Go to a musical or a movie? Unless the musical is Les Miserables, I’ll take the movie option.

Vacation at the beach or at the mountains? Engaged on a mountain, married on the beach, I love them both! Beach ultimately wins – crashing waves, bare feet in sand, endlessness of the ocean.

Have an exciting night out or a relaxing night in? Relaxing night in. Games, pjs, cuddles, deep conversation = happiness.

Watch sports, play sports, or no sports? I’ll watch as long as hubby is nearby. Then it classifies as a date. =)

Thanks so much for joining me on this link-up intro!

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Finding God Everyday Freedom | Identity Now Found Blog

Can I Be Healed?

I don’t suppose I considered this question of healing much before I experienced a life-altering diagnosis. Have you?

I’ve been living with Type 1 diabetes for nearly a decade. A decade of confusion, lessons learned, failed attempts, successes, struggles, and wondering: What is God doing in the midst of this disease?

Several years ago, the Lord put a radical idea on my heart: that healing is not the thing to be sought…that He brings good even out of chronic illness…that He is the Healer of my spirit, soul, and body regardless of what the “facts” I presently face try to prove. As God and I tend to do, we processed this entire concept through writing and now I’m excited to share with you the result, my latest book, Chronic Healing: Hope and Healing For Body, Soul, & Spirit.

Chronic Healing dives deeply into the raw reality of my day-to-day, living with an ongoing condition, and considers the many ways God has brought incredible healing to my life. Through this personal testimony, you will be encouraged in your own circumstances. You will be introduced in a fresh way to your Healer. And you can witness how He has touched and brought healing to areas of my life such as self-pity, control issues, fear, anger, confusion, perspective, body-stewardship, and many more!

You are loved. You are seen. And the God who created you has purpose in every circumstance you find yourself in!

Order your copy of Chronic Healing today!

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Finding God Everyday Now Found Blog

My Relationships with God and Food

A friend of mine put out a challenge to me a couple of months ago: consider trying a whole-foods, plant-based diet. Our families have grown in our friendship over the past few years and this pastor and former NFL athlete had just written the foreword to my latest book, Chronic Healing.

“I just want to challenge you to take a look at it, Courtney,” he said.

This girl who’s grown up the carnivore, loving her steaks grilled medium, bacon, and chicken of all cooked varieties. This girl who’s leaned on dairy to feel full and comforted, who buys no less than three dozen eggs at nearly every grocery trip. What?

I had a terrible migraine one afternoon. My husband was to be away for a men’s retreat overnight. So the kids and I grabbed some Chinese takeout, ate an early dinner, and retired to bed incredibly early. I ate my crab rangoons, despite how I know the way they make my blood sugar go haywire for hours. And I felt terrible.

Sitting in the dark to ease the migraine, I still wasn’t tired, so after my nutrient-void meal, I found a couple of documentaries on eating a plant-based diet. (It could also be called veganism, but since that label comes with additional stereotypes I don’t feel fit me personally, I’ll stick with “plant-based.”)

My understanding was challenged. I wanted to feel good and healthy and whole in my body. I wanted to be fit, ready for whatever calling God placed on me.

After glancing at the calendar, I saw that my next checkup was 2 months away. What a perfect time for an experiment! I could handle eating plant-based for 2 months to see what changes came along the way. The next morning became my Day One.

It’s been 2 months now that I’ve eaten a plant-based diet and I’m amazed at the changes I’ve seen. So far, I’m 13 pounds lighter (without even trying), I’ve been able to lower my daily insulin requirements by about 20%, my LDL (bad) cholesterol has dropped 46 points, I feel lighter, more agile (as opposed to more lethargic, that had become my norm), and what amazes me most is that my ever-present cravings have all but ceased! I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t overwhelmed during a day with some kind of food craving.

After meals I feel satiated, yet not stuffed. I feel like I’ve fed my body nutrients rather than merely fed the beast in my belly which is never satisfied. More often, I’m seeing a few bites left on my plate because I’m able to better sense when I’m full. Smelling cooked meat or cheesy dishes may ignite my taste buds for a moment, but the moment has quickly been passing me by.

Many times, when I’ve mentioned to others throughout these past weeks what I’m doing, their response is a mixture of admiration and a certainty that they could never do that because they “love” their food too much. They could never give up ranch dressing or cream in their coffee or their seasoned steak or breakfast eggs or bacon. It’s inconceivable!

And, more than ever before, I’m seeing how tethered we as a society have become to food to comfort us. That was me! A whole life spent tied to food, idolizing food, unwilling to part with my favorites.

I’m not a dietician, and I’m not telling you to eat (or not eat) anything in particular. I’m simply sharing a piece of my story with you. My story is still developing. I’m still researching the ins and outs of this particular way of eating. But I do want to place a challenge out to you – are you eating to live or are you living to eat?

Are you selecting your food based on its nutrient density, its ability to feed your body’s cells? Or, are you selecting your food based on the cravings of your taste buds and the groaning of the beast in your belly?

“Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.” Philippians 3:19

A few final thoughts:

  • What about protein? – We’re all concerned with this one and it’s the primary question I am asked. Plants are abundant in protein. My main sources include hemp-based protein powder, hemp hearts, sprouted pumpkin seeds, nuts, and protein-heavy veggies.
  • What about refined grains and sugar?  – Simply put, I’m avoiding them. They’ve been stripped of nutrients. I’ll have the occasional dinner roll or side of pasta when eating out, but generally, I’m seeking to eat whole foods.
  • What about gut health? – Remember, I’m still learning, still experimenting. I do know how un-sprouted grains and legumes can negatively impact gut health, so my goal is to eat sprouted grains and legumes wherever possible, getting more comprehensive over time.
  • Are you using a specific plan?  – No I’m not. I created a list of meals and snacks I knew I already liked that fit within the parameters of a plant-based diet (vegetables, fruits, nuts/seeds, whole grains, tubers, legumes). And when I meal-plan or grocery shop, I simply refer to my list. I don’t count calories or points.
  • Is this for everyone? – I don’t know and I won’t presume to say one way or the other. For me, this is making huge differences in my life and in the way I approach food. (My husband eats what I eat, plus high-quality meats, organic and grass-fed wherever possible. With his diet and regular CrossFit training, he’s leaner and stronger than he’s been in quite a while.) Talk with your trusted health practitioner, consider your specific situation, and try different methods to see what works best for you!
  • What does this have to do with God? – This blog space is dedicated to finding God in our everyday circumstances. So why am I writing about food? Because food has been an idol in my life since childhood. The enemy has used food to control me and provide false comfort. Yet God is the One who created food and designed our bodies. He often used food in the Bible (a physical substance) to speak to a deeper reality, a spiritual issue within the hearts of His people. For the first time in my life, I no longer feel dominated or consumed by food. I feel fueled by it, better equipped to move forward in God’s calling on my life.

May I pray for you? Lord, thank You for the person reading these words. Thank You for Your perfect design and purposes on our lives. Thank You for creating food to bring us back to remembrance of our need for You. Help us honor You with our choices and steward these bodies well. Guide us in wisdom to Your very best for our individual needs and circumstances. Reveal to us Your next steps and give us boldness to move forward, forsaking anything in our lives that does not honor You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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Finding God Everyday Now Found Blog

The Books I Keep Close

Our family is building a new home and we’re preparing to move. With that comes my least favorite task (aside from the waiting) – packing!

Last month we loaded about half of our belongings into a storage unit, keeping only the basics for living and staging; the vast majority of my 400+ books are now packed away. Obviously, I’m a book worm – books being one way God speaks into me, challenges, and changes me. So which books could I not part with for these few months?

For my spirit…

The Bible – I’m all about having five-zillion Bible versions on my phone, but nothing compares to having my tangible copy, marked with ink and highlighter, bearing witness to countless God-chats across the years.

How To Worship a King by Zach Neese – Read repeatedly and worn with ink and dog-ear corners, this is a favorite! Exploring on a deep level the beauty and mystery of tabernacle worship from the Old Testament, Zach invites every believer to live their calling as part of a holy priesthood. I can’t get tired of this one!

The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer – My pursuit of God begins with His pursuit of me. That truth alone changes everything for me. Tozer’s book is rich and challenging. It’s coming due for a re-read soon, so I wanted to keep it close.

The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis – This title has sat on the windowsill above my kitchen sink for years. It is rich enough that merely two propped-open pages can keep me occupied while I hand-wash dishes.

Soul Keeping by Howard Baker – This one made the cut for one reason: one of my dearest friends told me to read it again. I bought and read this during my seminary years and it’s been in the attic ever since. But at her recommendation, I’m keeping it close as a reminder to read ASAP.

Prayers From The Heart by Richard J. Foster – Another title to grace my kitchen windowsill…because I’ve often found myself in the kitchen, overwhelmed with the demands of the day. This beautiful collection of prayers reminds me to stop and reflect, turning my moments back to God.

One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp – Growing gratitude is the boiled-down premise here. And, boy, I can use continual work on that! Ann’s exquisite, poetic prose draws me into a world that realizes the presence of God, becoming ever-present to Him.

For a challenge…

Think Differently, Live Differently by Bob Hamp – Another one I can’t fully put down. This book has quite literally changed my life and the way I think.

Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst – Because stewarding my physical body is a spiritual act and I’m in a season of presently walking this out.

The Shack by WM Paul Young – A novel I have read countless times and can’t wait to read again! This story has opened my eyes in a way few other books have to the box I’ve kept God in and the possibilities that are beyond my logic and understanding. God is huge and personal and loving and creative and unexpected and funny. And He certainly doesn’t live in a box of my creation.

How to Stop the Pain by James B. Richards – I hate the title of this book because it simply doesn’t jive with the message. But the book itself, I already know, will be read on repeat. My hubby read this for his recent master’s class and experienced such immense heart change that when he insisted I read it, I had zero objections. No disappointments here!

For personal ties…

In The Waiting by Marsha Day – I was deeply honored to edit this book for Marsha. So when she sent me a “thank you” copy in the mail, which arrived the day we began packing away the books, I couldn’t bear the thought of boxing it up. I LOVE seeing her precious message of hope in the midst of suffering and confusion come to life on these gorgeous pages!

Encouragement Between Loads of Laundry by Kendra Hunt – Here’s another book by a friend. Kendra is sweet and straightforward, which comes through fabulously in this, her “accidental” book. Short, to-the-point, often hilarious words for the mamas at home; it’s simply refreshing.

For writing & work…

The Elements of Style by Strunk & White – This is my go-to book for all things writing and editing. I love that it’s so short and simple. It covers about 95% of all concerns I have as a writer and editor.

The Chicago Manual of Style – For the other 5%, I have this book. It’s a failsafe, should I run into something Elements or my favorite grammar sites don’t cover.

On Writing by Stephen King – My first purchase from this particular author, basically because the few movies I’ve seen of his gave me nightmares for years! But, after hearing over and over again about the insights he provides for writers, I thought I’d give it a go. On the whole, I was pleased, though reading through his memoir section had me praying for Mr. King to meet Jesus in a personal, freeing, life-altering way. Regardless of his faith, or lack thereof, he absolutely is a gifted writer and has worthwhile thoughts to share in this book.

There’s simply something about books I find comforting, compelling, challenging. Diving into an author’s heart-message, learning from them, considering a different perspective – these are just a few reasons I’m a proud book-nerd.

What’re you reading lately? What titles do you inevitably return to time and again?

 

 

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Speaking of books…my latest title will release THIS SUMMER! Chronic Healing is my testimony of experiencing God’s grace, hope, and healing in the midst of living with a chronic illness.

If you have struggled with any sort of ongoing condition, be it physical, mental, emotional, etc, I pray that Chronic Healing will open up a fresh perspective on what God is working in the midst and what His heart is for you and your circumstance.

COMING SOON!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* This post contains affiliate links which, if used to purchase, provide my family a small fee at no additional cost to you. Thank you! 

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Adopt | Foster Finding God Everyday Now Found Blog

Facing A Season of Change

Recently, I sat down with a friend I haven’t talked with in depth for a while, just a time to catch up and let our kids play. “What’s going on with you these days?” she tossed out with a smile.

I stumbled over thoughts. Usually I can pick one or two things going on and jump right in. But this has been a full season indeed. It took me a minute to get out, “Too much!” Many things. Big things. Incredible life changes.

And the enemy has been out in full force, on the attack for months. On the one hand, it’s frustrating being in a season with so much wonderful, yet facing so many battles – living moment-to-moment wielding my shield and sword. On the other hand, it’s an encouragement that we’re on the right track if the enemy is so hell-bent on derailing and discouraging us.

I keep coming back to my word for this year: Press! And God has brought me time and again to Psalm 18, remembering that He is my Source of strength, everything that I need. But I still have an active part to play, taking the offensive position against my enemies.

“I pursued my enemies and overtook them, and did not turn back till they were consumed. I thrust them through, so that they were not able to rise; they fell under my feet. For you equipped me with strength for the battle; you made those who rise against me sink under me.” Psalm 18:37-39

What are these enemies that need to be overtaken and thrust through? Fear. Food cravings. The desire for control. Lethargy. Insecurity. Pride. The feeling that I’m just not enough, or far worse, that God is not enough.

So, in the midst of the battles, what’s been going on around here? Here are the top highlights:

NEW BOOK ON THE WAY! The very week after I completed Refining Identity, I began writing Chronic Healing. It’s been three years in the works and now we’re preparing to launch. Chronic Healing follows my journey living with Type 1 diabetes and chronicles the many ways God has brought healing to my life as I’ve learned to seek the Healer more than I seek the “healing.” This is my testimony, sharing with every reader how God wants to be right there in the midst of your own chronic struggles, be they physical, emotional, or spiritual. This book is a message of hope, freedom, truth, and naked vulnerability as you peek into the day-to-day challenges of living with an ongoing condition even as God brings about His own miraculous healing. Chronic Healing will be released this summer!

NEW HOME! We’re building a new house and preparing to sell our current one, nearly complete with the projects to get it sell-worthy. The many conversations full of dreaming Steve and I have had over the years have come in handy these past few months as we (finally) made the decision about whether to continue investing time and money into our older house or build a new one that will better suit our long-term needs. We’ve maximized every square foot of our current home. And given the next major update, extra square footage will be a huge bonus!

NEW MEMBER OF THE FAMILY! Our journey towards adoption has been long, beginning with our hearts’ longings even before marriage, continuing through facing two high-risk pregnancies, lived temporarily through our fostering experience, and moving into a permanent stage now with domestic adoption. We’re SO excited to meet the newest member of the Cohen family! Get ready to hear more about our journey as I will catalog the steps along the way, inviting you to take part in this wonderful process with prayer and partnering with us financially to make this dream a reality.

And, in the midst of all of this, I’ve been writing up a storm on new projects, editing and working as a writer’s coach, eating a plant-based diet to test its effects on diabetes for me, and continuing to teach classes at church. I’ve also had to release some things from my schedule. I’ve had to say no, or at least not now. And, certainly, I’ll have to say no as other opportunities come my way, discerning what God has for me in this season.

Through everything, this blog has been simmering on the back burner. I’ve missed this space, this open discussion of the many ways God can be found. In a season like this, full of happenings, it’s easy to overlook the nearness of His presence. But He’s so close, arms extended, reaching for us in every, single circumstance if we will only pause to take notice.

So, what’s going on with you these days? How do you see God moving in the midst of this season?

 

CH Front Cover PerfectHave you ever wondered how to reconcile the reality of a chronic condition with the existence of a healing God?

In Chronic Healing, I share my journey of living with a chronic illness, all the while experiencing ongoing healing throughout my life. God has shown me that He is faithful, He is near, He sees the daily battles, He walks alongside in every moment.

Chronic Healing is Now Available! Order your copy today and meet the One who can give you lasting hope and healing for your body, soul, and spirit!

 

 

 

Categories
Freedom | Identity Now Found Blog

Under Renovation…My House and Me

Pixabay tools-498202_1280

I just so happened to marry a fix-it guy who thinks it’s fun to spend our weekends slowly renovating our home.  The first time he suggested we “scrape off the ceiling popcorn”, I was incredibly confused.  Is that allowed?

But, as I’ve found out, with time and being married to my opposite, I have grown in my capacities to such a level that I can actually decipher what odd-looking tool he’s asking for and I can hand-trowel a wall with the best of them.

We’ve rooted up old tile and laid new floors, textured and painted, constructed elaborate tree forts, knocked down walls and created new ones and I’ve grown to be incredibly familiar with our local hardware store.   I no longer have panic attacks when he cuts a hole in a wall.  He’s quite adept at patching it and I’ve seen it so many times, I’m fairly confident I could manage it myself.  (Although, I’m happy to leave it to him and sit down with a good book…just saying.)

And in the meantime, God’s been working through these renovations to make some changes within me as well.  We rip apart our home, slowly and with hard work and intentionality, in order to make it better reflect our tastes and preferences.  We live here…working and resting…playing and crying…this is our central location.

So it’s become in my walk with God, that over the years, He’s smoothed plenty of rough edges and retextured the walls of my heart. He’s painted over and knocked down walls and installed lovely new windows so that as time moves onward I actually reflect more and more of Who He is.  He’s so intentional and willing to put in the work because He’s chosen to live here…not just once a week for church.  He’s not an occasional visitor that I have to start tidying up for.  My heart is where He kicks up His feet and relaxes and tells me about His day and listens to me tell Him about mine.  It’s home.  And it wouldn’t be home without Him here.

Now, just as my house is under perpetual construction, so am I.  Even now, I look up to see a long wall in our living room awaiting a final coat of paint.  And I see our fireplace that my hubby dreams of ripping down and completely overhauling someday.  We’re not done and, I suspect that we likely never will be.  (I’ve finally figured out that this was a silent clause in my marriage contract…”I promise to stand by your side with hammer, paintbrush and trowel in hand, till death do us part.”)

And just the same way, I know God will continue His work in me, just as He hopes to work in you!  Don’t worry about tidying up before you open the door to His knock.  He’s got His toolkit and He’s up to the task.

 

My latest book, Chronic Healing, is NOW AVAILABLE! Do you or a loved one struggle with the reality of facing a chronic condition while believing in a healing God? Here is my raw and real story of experiencing the healing touch of God multiplied in my life even in the midst of having a chronic illness. God longs to touch your life right where you are. Order your copy today!

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