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Archive for the tag “god”

Faith in the Raw


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T
his quote sums it up almost perfectly for me. No matter how many times I have told myself, “I will just give up. This is too hard,” I can’t throw in the towel. My desire to have a baby with my husband isn’t a desire like walking into Kohl’s and seeing that beautiful Vera Wang handbag that I would love to have. It’s a desire that goes much deeper, and one that can’t fully be expressed in words. So, here I am. Another month. Another cycle. Part of me wants to throw in the towel and just say, “Screw it!” The other part of me says, “You can’t give up. You want this child. Have faith.” 

Faith. You would think that as a Pastor’s Wife and Christian I wouldn’t struggle with faith, right? Wrong. I struggle with having faith just like anyone else struggles with it. There are times when I have incredible faith, and then there are times when it is difficult to even have the faith the size of a mustard seed. Today is one of those days. It’s been over 3 years and nothing has changed. I have no answers as to why my body isn’t conceiving our desired child. No magic tricks to share that got us success. No babies to even speak of. Just the same charted cycle month after month after month. The same “negative” pregnancy tests. The same ovulation predictor kits letting me know that there is nothing wrong in that department. Just the same. 

This morning I read from Hebrews 11, and verse 11 struck me. 

“Because of faith also Sarah herself received physical power to conceive a child, even when she was long past the age for it, because she considered [God] Who had given her the promise to be reliable and trustworthy and true to His word.” Hebrews 11:11, Amplified Bible

 

It is sort of obvious as to why this verse would stick out to me, right? I know. And then again this verse also had me telling God, “Please Lord, please don’t let me have to wait till I am as old as Sarah before I receive my child of promise.” Seriously, this is a concern of mine. I have shared it on numerous occasions with my husband. I want that “physical power” that Sarah received. I want her faith. But wait, didn’t she laugh first? Didn’t she think it to be a joke? Yes, she did. So, then where was her faith? Maybe it was in the fact that in the back of her mind she continued to cling to her desire, and when God shared that she and Abraham would have their child of promise she clung even tighter to that desire and hope. She may have been laughing on the outside, but maybe in the depths of her soul she was shouting, “Yes, Lord! Yes! I believe it! I receive it!” Maybe. Just maybe. 

I can share from my own experience that even though my husband and I have three children between us, the desire to have a child together is strong. Our desire to have this precious child doesn’t mean that we don’t love the three children we have now. Our child of promise is wanted. It is already loved. It is prayed for. My soul yearns for this precious child. My heart longs for Ada and/or Liam (maybe the Lord will choose to bless us with just one, or maybe He will bless us with both). 

So even though part of me is screaming, “Screw this! I am done! I have had enough of this emotional roller coaster. I am sick of the same crap every month. I am tired of seeing pregnancy announcements, birth announcements, gender reveals, and the likes plastered all over my social networks, all while I am over hearing dying inside. I have had enough of it!,” I can’t ignore the other part of me. The other part that whispers, “Don’t give up Jaclyn. It’s not a lost cause. Your pain will turn into joy soon.” And it might sound weird and crazy to some of you, but even though there are times when I am so mad at God and want to scream at Him over this pain, He is where I find the greatest comfort. I can do nothing apart from Him. I am afraid of the dark pit I might find myself in if I let go of Him for even one second. So I cling tighter to Him. I rest in Him. I bury my sobbing heart in Him. And I allow Him to hold me while I break into a million pieces. And He lets me. There is no other place that makes sense for me to be than in His arms. It is the only place that makes sense. 

I will continue to press on in faith even on the days where my faith isn’t even the size of a mustard seed. Why? Because I know my God is greater than any pain I might have. He is bigger than any doubt. He is more powerful than any disappointment and discouragement I might face. He is my God who loves and adores me no matter what. He is making a way even if I can’t see it. And He is forever faithful. The enemy will not have the victory because I am the precious daughter of the Most High God, and in Him is where I find my strength, hope, and faith. 

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Stamp of Approval


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We all want a “stamp of approval” on our lives. I mean nobody likes to be told that how they behave, how they parent, how they treat others, how they live their lives, and anything else that involves their decisions is well, let’s just say not up to par. I will admit that I don’t like being told that some of my decisions and choices aren’t always the best, and sometimes I have issues with authority (oops, how did that skeleton get out the closet). But lately, I have felt God making me more aware of that fact that not everything people do in their lives has His official stamp of approval. Oh, we like to put it there though don’t we?

How many times have we done something, said something, or behaved a certain way and thrown God’s stamp of approval on it knowing good and well He was probably shaking His head at us the entire time. I mean, come on. 

I have noticed a lot of “stamps of approval” lately that have been placed by human hands, not God’s. It upsets me, and it breaks my heart. Since when did we become so blind to the fact that if it isn’t in line with God’s Word then it does NOT get His stamp of approval? 

You can’t live with your significant other and have sex outside of marriage, and turn around and proclaim that God is in control of your life. No. God’s Word is very specific when talking about sex outside of marriage. Scripture tells to even flee from the very hint of sexual immorality. Shacking up with your significant other before marriage falls into this category. So, I am sorry, but God’s stamp of approval does not get placed on this. 

You can’t cuss and drink like a sailor, and then turn around and sing God’s praises. “From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this ought not to be so.” (James 3:10) “Do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery;” (Ephesians 5:18) God’s stamp of approval doesn’t get on this either. 

Divorcing your spouse because you “fell out of love,” or for any other reason other than abuse, adultery, or abandonment, and then saying that God is opening up a new door for you. No, God’s stamp of approval doesn’t get on this either. “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Mark 10:9)
I realize none of this is like swallowing sugar….more like salt. It’s not easy for me to type this. I am more of a warm and fuzzy kind of gal, with a side (ok, maybe an extra side) of sassiness. But it really breaks my heart that God’s name seems to be placed just about everywhere now. We like to think that if we include His name then everything will be ok. 

Look, I am a divorcee. I went through a divorce, and I know the pain that it brings. It’s not easy. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. I won’t go into details of that chapter of my life (that’s another post), but I will share that it was a hard struggle for me. And I also know that divorce was never in God’s plan. Ever. God is not an advocate of divorce. Just like he’s not an advocate for shacking up, cursing, drunkenness, wrong behavior, nasty attitudes, lying, cheating, stealing, and the likes. 

Oh there is grace. His sweet wonderful grace. And we can have it at no cost to us, well let me take that back. His grace is freely given to us, but we do have to lay down our pride, self-centeredness, and our ego. We can make poor life choices and be forgiven. God doesn’t turn His back on us when we make decisions that don’t line up with His Word, but that doesn’t mean He approves of them either. So, maybe instead of putting His stamp of approval on it, we should strive to make better choices and seek His way. Maybe instead of looking at our poor choices and thinking to ourselves that God orchestrated the chain of events (you know, so we can feel better about ourselves), we should ask Him to show us His way apart from those poor choices. 

I am by no means perfect, and I don’t have everything figured out. God knows that, and I would never claim to be the girl who has it all together. Really, I am a broken soul in desperate need of my Savior everyday at every moment. I fail Him daily. I make poor choices. I hurt people. I don’t always have the best attitude. I can be snotty and plain out rude. I don’t always love my spouse like I should. I don’t always give my kids my best. And there are times when I try to put God’s stamp of approval on things I have done so that I can feel better. I confess. But that doesn’t mean it’s right. It doesn’t mean it’s ok. I cling to Jesus everyday because I know if I don’t, I will slip right back into the pit He rescued me from. And it’s a dark pit that I don’t ever want to return to. 

Friends, this post isn’t meant to be judgmental or cause you to have a pound of guilt strapped around your neck. And isn’t meant to make you feel bad about yourself. This post is as much for me as well. My prayer is that this post will cause all of us to take a good hard look at our life choices before we try to put God’s stamp of approval on them. And if they don’t line up with His Word, I pray that we wouldn’t try to force His stamp of approval on them. I pray that we would seek His way above our own way, even if it isn’t the easiest or most comfortable. I pray that we would rest in His grace, love, and mercy, and trust Him to always lead us in the right way. 

“But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:14)

Grace & Peace, Jac

He’s The Remedy


I am going to start this post off by getting the ugliness out of the way. I didn’t sleep very well last night, at all. I was having some pains that were making it difficult to get comfortable. At 1:30 am my eyes popped open, and I wrestled with myself to go back to sleep. There was no way I was going to get up and do anything at that time of the night (I mean, those days are long gone). I finally got myself back to sleep only to have my eyes pop open again at 3:40 am. Ugh. This time it was a combination of needing to go to the bathroom and Alaska (our husky mix pup…..she is almost 7 months old, so get a picture of Godzilla in your mind) whining at my feet. I got out of bed and headed straight to the bathroom. I thought I would figure out Alaska’s problem after I dealt with mine. Alaska surprised me as I came out of the bathroom. She was sick. Again, picture Godzilla being sick. At 3:40 am, this dog had to get to sick. Really? I mean, doesn’t she know people sleep at that time of the day? So, half awake I proceeded to clean up her mess, only to discover this wasn’t the first time she had been sick while I was getting my beauty rest. Seriously?!? After I got everything cleaned up, Alaska and I headed back to bed. My alarm woke both of us up at 6:30 am, and we started this cycle all over again. Alaska, this time, was escorted outside so that she could be sick to her heart’s content without having to worry about having to clean it up. (Yes, I do have a heart and I love my dog dearly. Don’t start thinking I am all Cruella Deville over here.) Let’s just say the spring in my step this morning hasn’t been very “springy.” More like a zombie walk where one foot just gets dragged along for the journey. 

It was finally time to take the kiddos to school. Austin, Kirstin, Princess (the Chihuahua), and myself loaded up in the car and headed to school. I felt like it was a David Crowder Band kind of morning, so I hooked up my iPhone and played a bit of the Remedy album and a bit of the Church Music album for our morning commute. God has such a way of speaking (or singing) into our lives at exactly the right moment and with exactly the right words. We tend to miss it at times, but this morning I heard Him loud and clear. As the music played my attention was perked when the song “Remedy” played (from the Remedy album). 

He is the one Who has saved us
He is the one Who forgave us

He is the one who has come 
And is coming again
He’s the remedy

Oh, I can’t comprehend
I can’t take it all in
Never understand
Such perfect love come
For the broken and beat
For the wounded and weak
Oh, come fall at His feet
He’s the remedy
He’s the remedy

 

I began thinking on how the worst of days cannot compare to the saving grace and saving power of Jesus. He is the remedy for it all. He comes in like the knight in shining armor and makes everything right. Not even a lack of sleep stands a chance against Him. 

Then, my attention was drawn again to the song “Shadows” (Church Music album), as I heard these words:

Life is full of light and shadow 
O the joy and O the sorrow 
O the sorrow 

And yet will He bring 
Dark to light 
And yet will He bring 
Day from night 

When shadows fall on us 
We will not fear 
We will remember 

When darkness falls on us 
We will not fear 
We will remember 

When all seems lost 
When we’re thrown and we’re tossed 
We remember the cost 
We rest in Him 
Shadow of the cross

 

Again, God was reminding me that He has me. Zombie walk and all. He has me in His hands, and He’s not letting me go. No matter if I am plagued with a lack of sleep, unexplained secondary infertility, not feeling good, and whatever other situation and circumstance I can find myself in, He has me. 

I can rest in the shadow of the cross, knowing that Jesus Christ is the remedy for it all. He makes all things new. ” See, I am making all things new.” (Revelation 21:5) He makes wrongs right. He turns darkness into light. He holds me safe in His arms despite the chaos that may surround me. He brings joy where there is pain and sorrow. He brings hope when it seems all hope is lost. He brings love where there seems to be none. He brings grace where there is shame. He is the remedy. There is nothing too great for Him. 

Come fall at His feet, He’s the remedy. He’s the remedy. 

Listen to Remedy here:http://youtu.be/4DPdWn7m3I0

Listen to Shadows here:http://youtu.be/7TF35CmGB4k

I Am Spoiled


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As I was preparing the coffee pot this evening for mine and Brian’s evening cup of coffee, I got to thinking about how over the years I have been accused of growing up a spoiled little rich girl. Yea, for some reason some people have actually been offended by my aspirations to better myself, get an education, and live a certain lifestyle. I will admit, this usually makes me pretty defensive. But this evening, I began thinking about it a bit more. I am going to take it as the Lord opening my eyes to how “spoiled” and “rich” I really was growing up, and still am.

I grew up with loving parents who provided a roof over my head, clothes for me to wear, and food for me to eat. My parents taught me manners and proper social etiquette. I was raised to believe in Jesus Christ, and taught Christian values and morals. (I may not have always followed them as a teenager, but I came back to them when I woke up from my selfishness.) My parents never let me do without the things I needed (there is a difference in what we want and what we need). I didn’t get a horse, a brand new car, or every thing I thought I just had to had. My curfew was earlier than most of my friends, and I wasn’t allowed to watch certain shows.

So yea, I would say I was pretty “spoiled” and “rich” growing up. Probably not in the way that the world deems spoiled and rich, but I was spoiled with LOVE. I was rich because of the upbringing I had. My parents never gave me a reason to question whether or not they loved me or wanted me. I was cared for, loved on, and nurtured in the best way. I was brought up knowing the love of the Father, how important faith is, and that our hope is found in Jesus.

And now, well, I am still spoiled and rich. I still have faith, hope, and love. I have a roof over my head, food in my belly, clothes to wear, and a family who loves me. I may not have the wealth of Bill Gates or the fame of Taylor Swift. But I have a God who loves me more than I can comprehend, and He has blessed me beyond measure.

So yea, I guess you can say I am still a spoiled little rich girl. 🙂

Keeping the Faith


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This verse of scripture is one that might seem a bit odd for my post today, seeing as though I am not posting in celebration to an announcement I have been longing over three years to announce. I don’t have that announcement yet. No clever “we’re having a baby” announcement. No cute picture of a tiny pair of TOMS in the middle of my feet and my husband’s feet. No picture of an ultrasound showing the beautiful picture of a miracle made reality. None of that.

No, this post is one of sharing my struggle of a desire still being unfulfilled. A heart left empty yet again. A longing still aching to be made reality. Another month of a heart breaking into a million tiny pieces that nothing and no one can put back together. Not even all the king’s horses and all the king’s men could fix this. It is a pain so deep and so real that it can’t be understood by anyone who has never experienced it. And still a pain that I believe can only truly be understood not only by those who have experienced it, but also by only a woman. I don’t think men can even fully understand the full extent of a heart broken by this desire to have a child.

So, why this verse of scripture then? Why would I choose a verse that is used in celebration? I used it partly because I am told over and over again to keep believing. Keep having faith that my child of promise will come. Keep clinging to my Heavenly Father and trust in Him, that He hears my prayers and is answering them in His time. And the other part is because when this child of promise is made a reality, this will be the verse of scripture painted above his/her crib. It will be not only my reminder of a promise fulfilled, but it will be there as a blessing over my precious miracle.

Call my crazy if you want. Honestly, most days I question my own sanity in more ways that just in this. Again, some days are easier than other days. Some days I can go without shedding a tear over this, and other days it takes all I have not to burst into uncontrollable weeping much less even get out of bed.

Yes, I have a beautiful daughter that I am thankful for. She is a blessing. So, please don’t  be one of those who questions why I would want another child if I already have one. All I can tell you is that I have a longing and a desire to be a mother again. I have a longing to feel a child growing within my womb and to experience the miracle of birth with my husband. And it isn’t one that can be satisfied by anything else. It isn’t like wanting an ice cream cake, and instead choosing a cup of greek yogurt. This is much deeper.

I am told, “in God’s time,” “keep believing,” “you have to have faith,” and “don’t think negatively.” I know all of these are said with well-meaning intentions, but honestly it doesn’t do anything for my deep hurt. Do I believe God can work miracles? Absolutely. Do I have faith that God will one day bless me with my child of promise? Most days. Do I enjoy feeling down and heartbroken? No. But I am human, and I fall short more often than I would like to.

I know I am probably all over the place with this post, but that is how raw emotions are. One minute you feel this way, and the next minute without warning your emotions are on the way opposite side of the spectrum.

I have names for my children of promise: Ada Willow Turner and Liam Eli Turner. (Again, call my crazy if you want to.) I pray that Ada and Liam would grow inside my womb to be healthy, strong, warriors for the kingdom of God. I pray that God will bless me with these precious miracles soon. I pray that my body is healthy enough to carry them and support them. I pray that my broken heart would be mended by the discovery of one (if not both) growing and developing within me. I pray that my sorrow would be replaced with joy. I pray that the enemy would not steal this precious gift from me.

So, 1 Samuel 1:27 is appropriate for this post. To serve as a reminder for me to not lose hope despite how I feel, and to speak life over what appears to be without life for the moment. I must keep believing. I must stand firm in my faith. I must not let the enemy use my emotions to cloud what I know to be true. I must continue looking to the Lord and seeking His face always.

Weaknesses Are the Key


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As I was doing my morning study of Gideon today it was hard for me to hang on to layers that God was peeling away from me. This study has been causing me to come face-to-face with things about myself that either I have tried desperately not to see, or I have just been so out of touch with my Christian walk lately that I couldn’t see them. Either way, God is doing a work on me as I mentioned in my previous post. It’s a hard work to go through, but at the same time it is a sweet season.

Isn’t that how God is though? He loves us enough to take us as we are, but He will never leave us as we were first were. This is true for every season of our life that we find ourself in as well. Who you were when Christ first drew you to Himself is not who you were a year after that, or even 3 months from that. Who you are today is not the same person you were yesterday or last year. God is continually doing a good work within us. We just fail to recognize that at times. And this is the truth that God brought to my attention today.

You see, I have been so focused on my weaknesses in my life that I forgot all about God’s goodness. Oh sure, I had the head knowledge of His goodness, but lately my heart has had trouble acknowledging His goodness. So this morning as I was faced with the statement from Priscilla Shirer, “Our weakness is the key to unlocking the favor of God in our lives,” and then left to ponder the question, “What is your 300” (reference the number of men Gideon had in his army to face the Midianites), I was broken to the core. God got through to me, and I couldn’t hold onto the layers He was desperately wanting to peel away from me. I had to acknowledge that it is through my weaknesses that HE is made strong. His grace IS sufficient for me. My weaknesses are not necessarily a bad thing, as I have been viewing them. They are the very thing that drives me to HIM. Without weaknesses, how could God’s power be revealed through us?

I thought I would share some of my “300” with you. Not as a way to boast or as a way to get you to feel sorry for me, but as a way to be transparent with you and show you that I struggle too. Also, by sharing my “300” I hope it encourages you to be honest with yourself and face your own “300,” but not in a negative way. Face them with the thought that these things are what is going to bring about God’s favor in your life.

My “300”:
1. Secondary Infertility
2. Insecurity
3. My Past
4. Finances
5. Being a good Wife
6. Being a good Mother
7. Being successful in my business

These are all areas that I struggle with. Not necessarily in the fact that I think I am awful in some of the areas, but I do have my doubts that creep in from time to time. There are times in these areas where I go into panic mode and lose sight of God’s goodness, and I try to take full control. BUT GOD. Today He has reminded me that as long as I try to control everything, His power cannot be revealed.

Friends, God will take the “300” in your life, in my life, and use it to bring about some of the greatest blessings. We cannot even begin to truly comprehend His complete goodness, but we can start to acknowledge it. We can let go of our weaknesses and stop trying to do everything ourselves, and just give it over to Him. I am convinced that if we want to see true victory in our lives, if we want to see God’s power displayed in our lives, then our weaknesses are the key to do that.

Grace & Peace, Jaclyn

Sweet Season


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Do you ever feel like God is doing something in you, but you just can’t quite put your finger on it? That is how I am feeling lately. I can sense God doing something, working within me. But if you were to ask me to explain it, I couldn’t put into words adequately.

I started Priscilla Shirer’s study Gideon a couple of weeks ago, and God has been using it to speak right to my heart. I started out thinking I was only going to prepare to lead this study and that God was going to use it to touch other women’s hearts. But God. Oh, those two simple words. How they change everything. God has been peeling back the layers of my heart with every lesson. He is doing a work within me right now, & it is a much needed work friends.

I will be honest and share with you that my walk hasn’t been as close as it should be, but He is changing that. He is bringing me back to Him. He is revealing to me & reminding me of His great purpose. He is reminding me of His calling on my life. And it is oh so sweet. I cannot wait to share with you along the way friends. This season of my life is one where my Almighty Father is drawing me into himself & allowing me to taste yet again that He is good. He is showing me that I am not much different than the insecure fearful Gideon, whom God chose to use to do great things. This is a sweet season.

Taste & see that The Lord is good. ~Psalm 34:8

Freedom


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What does the word FREEDOM bring to mind for you? Do you picture yourself? Do you picture someone else? Does it call to mind a financial freedom? Relationship freedom? Health freedom? Spiritual or emotional freedom? 

There are a lot of possibilities when it comes to what freedom can mean for each person. For the purpose of this post, I want to share some areas of freedom I have experienced. You see, there has been a lot of bondage in my life. Some was easier to break than others, while others seemed to be a bit more difficult. But when freedom came, it was oh so sweet. 

Spiritual freedom: I grew up in a Christian home. I went to church every Sunday and attended Sunday School. I knew about Jesus and knew all the songs about him. But as a teenager I drifted far from him. I slipped into a deep dark hole of bondage that had a strong hold on me. Drugs, alcohol, sex, and any other rebellious behavior was the norm for me. I still attended church and was even part of the youth ministry, but my heart was far from God. It wasn’t until after I suffered a miscarriage in my adulthood that I recognized my great need for Jesus again. I needed Him like I had never needed him before. And He was there to welcome me with open arms. And when I ran into His arms and allowed Him to embrace me, I experienced a freedom that I had not known before. True freedom. I didn’t need drugs, alcohol, sex, or anything else to try to make me happy. I had Jesus. The One true happiness and joy. He brought me true freedom. 

Financial Freedom: This area is an area still growing and developing, but still there is a sense of freedom here. I don’t mean a freedom that allows me to spend money wildly and without a care. But it’s a freedom where I recognize that all we have belongs to God in the first place. I can trust that the bills will be paid and our needs will be met. Why? Because it’s in God’s hands and not mine. I know that my security doesn’t come from the size of my bank account. My security comes from Jesus Christ alone. So even though we have bills to be paid, there is a sense of financial freedom knowing that our God is taking care of us everyday and every moment. Freedom.

Health Freedom: I always struggled with my weight and body image. I was never the super thin girl, and I was never the super big girl. But I never saw myself to be a beautiful woman created by God. I wasn’t the “Seventeen Magazine girl.” I tried to deal with my body image issues in unhealthy ways. Not eating. Binging and purging. And even when I thought I had finally “gotten it” and thought I was healthy, I still wasn’t as healthy as I could have been. I had no clue how important exercise and nutrition were, and that they go together at all times. Finally about a year ago, I connected with a now dear friend through social media, and this led to my journey that I a currently on. I became a health and fitness coach, committed to daily exercise, and took my nutrition serious. This has brought a freedom in my health. How? I have more energy. I don’t crave junk. I don’t give into my sweet tooth more times than I blink. I am more toned and flexible than I ever have been. Overall, I just feel good. Freedom. 

Your areas may be different than mine. You may have areas of bondage in your life that you desperately want to experience freedom. I don’t know what your areas of bondage are, but I do know that freedom can come. You can experience freedom in your life too. Freedom isn’t just for a select few. Freedom is for anyone and everyone willing to welcome it at any cost. You may have to make some sacrifices. You may have to cut ties. You may have to face ugly truths. But dear friend, it is oh so worth it. Freedom can be yours. 

Grace & Peace, Jaclyn

Breaking Comfort Zones, and Experiencing Grace and Love


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Yesterday was a day where I felt the Lord leading me out of my comfort zone, yet again. You know I have discovered that when God moves you out of your comfort zone in one area, more than likely He is about to move you out of your comfort zone in another area of your life. And it is really futile to resist, because one way or another, you will be moved out of it.

So, back to yesterday. I felt the Lord nudging me to check up on a friend who has just had a baby. I have not been a very good friend in checking up on her consistently, as it has been difficult for me. Not that I am not happy that she is experiencing one of the greatest joys a woman can ever know, but simply because I have found myself in a place that I never thought I would ever be. The place of secondary infertility. (If you haven’t read my story on this, I encourage you to go back a few posts and start from the beginning.) It’s not that I am not happy for my friend. It’s not that I am mad at her for getting pregnant and having this precious baby. It’s just a hard and difficult area in my life that I have to daily work through (some days are better than others). So, we have texted back and forth during her pregnancy and since her baby boy’s arrival, but I will admit I have been guarded. I have tried to pull back. I have even been a bit snotty. Yes, I am confessing here and being real with you guys. I have my faults and weaknesses just like anyone else, even as a Pastor’s Wife.

But yesterday as I was getting ready for church, I felt the Lord nudging me to check up on her. You know just to see how she was doing and how precious baby was. I tried to resist a bit, I admit. But I sent the text. We texted back and forth, and then it happened. The Lord had to do it again. The Holy Spirit was prompting me to apologize. Say what? Yep, He was telling me I needed to apologize for my behavior. I was like, “Seriously, Lord. Do I have to? (Just like a kid, right?) I mean, this is going to be uncomfortable.This will not be easy. It’s going to be awkward, God. What if she is mad at me? What if she shares with me that I have hurt her feelings or something? God, I will be exposed!” yea, all those thoughts went through my head. As I stood there with my phone in my hand, staring at our text conversation, I did it. It was hard. It wasn’t easy. It was awkward and uncomfortable. As I waited for a reply I even began replaying the conversation with God in my head. Then came the reply, ” I appreciate your apology. I know it’s been rough on you, and I think about that (and you) all the time.” What? Her accepting my apology really wasn’t took me off guard. It was the next statement. She was thinking about me. Even with my wrong attitude, she thought about me and my feelings. Talk about humbling. It still gets me as I look at it this morning. It’s not surprising in a way that this behavior is out of character for her. It’s surprising in a way, that despite how I behaved she never thought ill towards me. How Christ-like is that?

Does this mean, that my struggles with my feelings about my infertility are gone? Not at all. But I do feel a sense of peace and a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. God doesn’t push us out of our comfort zones as a means of torture. He pushes us out of them as a means of growth. He wants us to grow and blossom into the men and women of Christ that we are created to be. And we can’t do that in our comfort zones. I was hit with the uncomfortableness and the awkwardness yesterday, but most of all I had to face my own sin. I had to come face to face with my wrong attitude, and admit that I hadn’t been acting in a way that was Christ-like. And you know what I got in return? I got the love of Christ overflowing back to me. I received grace and love.

I pray that when God nudges you to step out of your comfort zones, that you are obedient. I pray that you experience the grace and love of Christ overflowing back to you as you break the bounds of your comfort zones. I pray that you choose to offer grace and love to those who step out of their comfort zones with you. Comfort zones are meant to be broken so that God’s love can be made known.

Grace & Peace, Jaclyn

Awake My Soul


Awake my Soul by Chris Tomlin

This song has been speaking to me a lot lately. You see I was once the dry bones. I was once without life. Without hope. Without light. I was in desperate need of the Father’s love & life.

I lived my life as a teenager in total opposite of what I have been taught. I went to church. I was part of the youth group. I believed in God. But all of that wasn’t enough to make me a disciple of Jesus Christ. It wasn’t enough to just go through the motions.

I partied. I hung out with the wrong crowd. I did things I shutter at the thought of today. I had not a single care in the world. Was it that my parents didn’t love me enough? No. Was it that I didn’t know right from wrong. No. Was it that my parents didn’t care? No. It came down to one word: REBELLION. I was living a life of rebellion. Rebellion against my parents. Rebellion against everything I had been taught. And rebellion against God.

I was in a dark place. I was in a barren place. A place without life or hope. I was the dry bones in the dry valley. Did I realize that at the time? Not for one moment. It wasn’t until I became an adult, that my eyes were opened to the fact that I was a walking skeleton. I realized my desperate need for God. I needed my Savior. I needed Him to speak life into me.

The girl that was once the dry bones is only a memory to me now. I feel for her. I see her pain now. I see her emptiness. She has allowed me to see though, that there area my other people just like her. Walking skeletons without a clue of how much they are in need of the Savior’s love.

I am alive in Christ now. I am no longer the walking skeleton. The breathe of God swept over me & He spoke life into me. I get chills just thinking about how
much He loves me. And I can’t help but picture myself at His feet thanking Him as I weep for joy, for speaking life into me. He has redeemed me. He can redeem you.

I know He has called me to share His great love with others. My story has purpose for Him. My passion for health & fitness is not the only passion He has given me. I have a passion to speak into lives & share the love of Christ with as many as possible.

My friend, I pray today that you will awake to His great love for you & to your desperate need of Him. He loves you with a crazy limitless love. And He is waiting to speak life into you. May He resurrect your dry bones today.

Grace & Peace, Jaclyn

<I would love to pray for you in any way I can.

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