When Life Has Dealt You a Bad Hand

We tend to get this idea in our heads that Christian leaders have everything in perfect order; that they are always holding a good hand. We think that they have had a great Christian life and have never been tempted to sin or been through troubled times. But this is far from the truth. When we look through scripture we find that God oftentimes chooses the weak or the least expected to do mighty things for Him.

Where the Light Felll

I have said many times that we need to have more times of testimony. Times when we share about our troubles and weakness. And then also to share how God has gone through the fire with us. How can others be encouraged or know that God is an amazing God when we aren’t sharing these things?

As I picked up Phillip Yancey’s memoir, Where the Light Fell, I found the story of his life heartbreaking. But I learned some things in my reading that I will share with you today.


We cannot let our past dictate our future.

Philip and Marshall Yancey, watched their father die when they were very young. They were raised by their mother and “aunt” whom they never felt they could please.

We all have our stories to tell. People have hurt us, often in terrible ways. Perhaps we were born into poverty or places full of drugs, alcohol, and crime. Maybe we were treated poorly by parents, family, or even leaders. But God has a plan in mind. Consider Joseph when he told his brothers,

“You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.”

Joseph, Genesis 50:20

God is ready to take whatever life has dealt you and turn it into something good. Your experiences can make you empathetic toward others who have gone through the same things. Trust me, they are out there looking for someone that can lead the way out. You may be that person.

Romans 8:28 

Where the Light Fell @philipYancey
#book review
images created by Mandy for free in Canva.com

BEFORE WE CONTINUE

I would like to leave a note here… I’m a seasoned Christian. I have learned to handle life’s challenges with God’s help. This does not mean that we don’t need occasional help from specialists, therapists that can help us through all the junk life has thrown at us. If you are struggling with depressions or having thoughts of suicide, please reach out for some help. Talk with a counselor or reach out to the suicide prevention hotline. They are there for you.

Test the Spirits.

Mrs. Marshall was heartbroken. She and her husband had plans to be missionaries, but when he contracted polio they followed the teachings and encouragement of the church leaders to reject treatment in the iron lung because God would heal him. He died two months later.

She continued following the instructions of this very conservative church to raise her children. And her harshness was hard for the boys to bear. Scriptures tell us to test the spirits. You would think, one could always trust what the church is telling you. But there are leaders and churches who are leading so many astray. We must vigilantly read the scriptures and pray for God’s guidance.

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit but test the spirits to see whether they are from God because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  1 John 4:1

Where the light fell
1 John 4:1
When you get a bad deal
#bookreview #philipYancey

On the otherhand, parents are doing the best they know in raising their children. Maybe we should give them a break.

Philip and his brother, Marshall were treated harshly by their mother. Disappointments in her life caused her to struggle all through life. Though she took direction from the church, it wasn’t always great advice. She was doing all she knew to do to raise her boys right but her frustrations came out as dissatisfaction and faultfinding toward her boys.

I know in my own life as I have grown and looked back, I can now see what was going on with my parents at times. I can see that what they said was not really directed at me. Sometimes, it was purely my own perception of the situation that was wrong.

When we realize this we need to have a little compassion. As we become parents ourselves, these realizations may come to fruition. When it does, this is the time to let go of the hurt and hatred so that relationships can be repaired.

Forgiveness is always the first step; and the sooner, the better.

It doesn’t really matter if a person comes and apologizes, we must forgive them. Otherwise, it will eat away at the soul. Unforgiveness does nothing to the instigator. It only drives you deeper into an unfulfilled life. (depression, anger, sin, and other things). Remember, Christ: He was wrongly accused, beaten, crucified, spit on. But what did he says from the cross before He died?

Forgive them, for they know not what they do.

Jesus, Luke 23:34
Where the Light Fell
#forgiveness

Remember the parable Jesus shared about the Unmerciful Servant. We have been forgiven so much, so we ought to also forgive those who sin against us.

35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.” Matthew 18

While our lives can have a direct influence on our children. It is still their own responsibility to find God and follow Him.

Parents, we need to examine our hearts as well. If we are getting out of control, it’s time to take a step back. Keep our mouths closed and stop from striking out. We do need to be willing to apologize to our children when we have been too harsh. Kids are resilient. And when we are willing to apologize, we will find that the situation is over and forgotten. But if these things keep happening, a child will retreat further and further. They will have difficulty finding it in their heart to forgive.

Though it is true that each child must come to God on his own, we can certainly create for them a more direct path to God. We need to do what we can to display the character of God before our children. We do have that responsibility,

Parents, don’t provoke your children to wrath.

Ephesians 6:4

And Proverbs 22:6…

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a Child

Rather, Let’s Hit our Knees in the Prayer Closet.

I just cracked open Hope McCardy’s book, 31 days of Praying God’s Wisdom for My Husband. In the first chapter, she shares how she was praying for success for her husband. She would constantly share her prayers with her husband. But he finally shared that this was causing extra stress on him. She learned that some prayers need to be silent prayers and kept in her prayer closet. She shared two principles that have been confirmed in her after decades of praying for her husband.

1. It is my responsibility to pray and pray and pray some more.

2. It is God’s responsibility to answer in His own time and in His own soveriegn way, and even when the answer is not to my liking, my trust must be in God and Him alone.

Hope McCrady, 31 Days of Praying God’s Wisdom for My Husband.

These truths apply to our children as well. I saw that the Yancey boys had a mother that wanted them to be missionaries since she didn’t get the chance. Then she began to push so hard. They weren’t able to live up to the task. So they questioned God and ran away from Him. Mrs. Marshal might have seen different results if she had gone into her prayer closet and prayed silently for her boys. (Remember The War Room Movie?)

Questioning is Not Always Wrong

Philip Yancey was always questioning his faith. What is Real? What is really a sin? He tested his teachers and mother at every turn. But in His questioning, he found the truth. He found a faith that he could grab onto and believe in. Not only that, he has been able to answer many questioning people through his books. His life and questioning of it gave him the knowledge to explain the truth to others that possibly, we who have always accepted the faith of our families cannot. Just take note of some of his book titles.

The Jesus I Never Knew

What’s So Amazing About Grace?

Prayer: Does it Make a Difference?

The Scandal of Forgiveness: Grace Put to the Test

WHY? The Question That Never Goes Away

Reaching for the Invisible God: What Can We Expect to Find?


I would like to thank Net Galley for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book. I have given my review freely and with honesty.

back to school

Back to School How NOT to worry about your Kids

Here we are! It’s time for school again. It’s easy to worry about all the things our children can face attending school. But God doesn’t want us worrying. So I thought it would be a good time to share some helpful resources. I polled some blogging friends for help. (NOTE: There are some affiliate links in this post.)

Teach Your Children Truth

I’d have to say that even before praying for your children, which is highly important, we must teach them daily from the Word. Proverbs says,

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. train up a child.

Proverbs 22:6
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The God Who Fights For You

The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles.

Psalm 34:17
God Fights for You
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Throughout the Bible we see that the godly are not exempt from troubles; however, God is always near to us. He is ever watching and He will help us through. Isaiah always shared comfort in that God was walking through those trials with us. He hears our cries and He provides what is needed as we go THROUGH the trial.

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foot care feature

Foot Care – How to Have Healthy, Happy Feet

We don’t often think about foot care until the pain is excruciating. I recently have acquired an issue with my feet. I suspected that RA was affecting my healthy, happy feet. So did my rheumatologist. There’s a thing called Rheumatoid Nodules. RA can cause painful nodules to develop on various parts of the body, including the feet. I visited my orthopedic specialist. He suspects a neuroma of the foot. “A neuroma is a painful condition, also referred to as a “pinched nerve” or a nerve tumor. It is a benign growth of nerve tissue frequently found between the third and fourth toes. It brings on pain, a burning sensation, tingling, or numbness between the toes and in the ball of the foot.” My orthopedic specialist focuses on knees and shoulders; so he has referred me to a foot specialist. So… we wait. {story of my life}

In the meantime, I started looking for ways to relieve the pain. My knees have been pretty painful as well so one evening I decided to take an Epson salt bath. It always relieves some of my Ra and Fibro pain. I was pleasantly surprised the next day that my foot pain was relieved as well… at least for the day. Then I purchased some Metatarsal gel footpads. These were very comfortable. Once I started walking, I never really felt them in my shoe. However, at the end of the day. I had a painful sore at the edge of the pad and between my toes where the hook had been. I only wore them one evening and the next day.

Foot Care Handbook

It turned out that NetGalley, the source I use for reviewing new books, had a new book by a reflexologist, Stephanie Tourles. It is a Foot Care Handbook. I downloaded the book to see if it might have some good advice for me. It’s a neat little handbook with five chapters.

Chapter 1 Greet Your Feet: Foot Care Basics

What would your feet tell you if they could speak to you? Probably something like, “You’re killing me! Quit wearing those ridiculous shoes!” There are basic things we should be doing for the health of your feet and, consequently, the rest of your body. Stephanie shares these basics with you and how to do them.

Did you know that you should be able to move each toe individually? It was news to me. I can only move my big toe separate from the others. I’m going to try to work on changing that!

Chapter 2: Foot Care Fitness: Stretching and Strengthening

Foot Fitness? Sure! Stephanie offers several great stretches and exercises for your feet. Foot care will relieve your pain in just a short time, I can tell you they are simple and profitable exercises.

Chapter 3: Foot Massage to Relax and Revive

The benefits of foot massage include reducing stress and anxiety, soothing the nervous system, and boosting circulation while minimizing any swelling. There’s more but I know this… It is helping my foot issues without having to get injections or surgery. A very good benefit.

She offers a recipe or two for homemade massage creams with essential oils! I didn’t have all the ingredients so I made do with what I had for the time being. Mary Kay’s Mint Energizing For Feet and Legs. Feels so good and relaxing, too.

Chapter 4: An Introduction to Foot Reflexology

I’ve always found it interesting that there are pressure points in your foot that create paths to all other parts of your body. Stephanie gives a great introduction to reflexology in this chapter. You might find you can relieve a lot of your pain and other issues if to study this chapter.

Chapter 5 Common Foot Problems, Uncommon Remedies

Here Stephanie talks about most of the common foot problems and offers suggestions on how to deal with them. An investment of $10-15 could save you lots of dollars for surgery and doctor visits.

Mandy

UPDATE: Finally, two weeks later, I saw the foot specialist. The massage and exercises must have helped because he said my movement was good. No stiffness in the ankle. He decided I wouldn’t even need an injection between my toes. (PTL!) He gave me a Hapad shoe insert to try and sent me on my way… well until six weeks is up.

PS. Wide size shoes have been a great help for me

I live in Skechers! Here are the ones I love! the STATEMENTS are very flexible. You can actually fold them! The GetAways have awesome memory foam support at the ball of your feet.



Foot Care Handbook

This book is set to publish in December 2021, but you can order in advance now.

I would like to thank Net Galley for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book. I have given my review freely and with honesty.

Why We Need to Honor our Historical Heroes

History repeats itself, but in such cunning disguise that we never detect the resemblance until the damage is done.

Sydney J. Harris

Education About our Heroes is Key

When I was in elementary school, we talked about the founding of our nation, our great presidents and leaders, and their character and devotion to liberty. I read and soaked up every biography I could get my hands on. It was important to know about the people that were responsible for building this country. My grandparents’ teachers took it a step further. They memorized speeches and poetry about our nation. My grandmother could quote many of these even just before her death at the age of 85.

You might say, “big deal! What does that matter?”

We are so Forgetful

The big deal is that if we don’t know where we came from we will tend to forget the good and repeat the bad. I’ve been studying the festivals of the Israelites. Erin Davis says in her book, 7 Feasts, “we all have spiritual amnesia, but there is a cure” (Psalm 103:2) I guess it has to do with the carnality of man. We just tend to digress instead of improving and learning from the mistakes of the past (our own and our ancestors).

Thomas Jefferson implied in the Preamble of our Constitution, that there was work to be done. That indeed, still here in 2021, we must work “to create a more perfect union”, always improving. Looking at where we came from and determining that we will not return there. We must do better. But we cannot do better if we are constantly wiping out and erasing the areas that need improvement.

Learning from our Past

In ancient times, empires would blot out anything bad that happened. (This is why there is no record of the Hebrews being in slavery in Egypt. It ended up bad for them; so it was blotted out of the history books). Our culture has been consistently working since the 1960s to blot out of our history books anything they don’t like. To the point that we aren’t really getting much history at all.

It is important for us to look at our past, the good and the bad. Then celebrate what we did right and learn from what was done wrong. Where wrongs were made, we remember to not do that again. We won’t remember in the future if we tear down statues and rename streets and buildings. We must leave them as a reminder. And when we see these statues we tell our children about the mistakes and how were are trying to not repeat them ever again. If we don’t teach our children they won’t even understand enough to tell their children.

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”

― Ronald Reagan

Inspired by a book!

  • The above is inspired by Eric Metaxas’ If You Can Keep It. A must-read for all Americans. It should be required reading for studying the beginning of our Nation. You know George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. But how many of these people are you familiar with? George Whitefield, Alexis de Toqueville, Benjamin Franklin, Nathan Hale, Paul Revere, Cincinnatus, Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, William Wilberforce, Squanto, Joshua Dewey. There’s more, but you can learn about all of these in this little book about our republic. You do know that we are a republic, not a democracy, right? Eric also has several biographies on these great heroes.

Teach Your Children Well

I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings of old,

Which we have heard and known, And our fathers have told us.

We will not hide them from their children, Telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord,

And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.

Psalm 78, NKJV

The Psalmist instructed us to teach our children even the dark things in our history. To tell our children the good and the bad. He was speaking of how the Israelites rebelled many times against the Word of God, but God forgave them and blessed them. This isn’t to imply that we teach our children they can do whatever they want and God will overlook it. No, God allowed them to suffer because of their wrongs, and then He drew them back to the fold of righteousness. This is what we should not forget.

Too many of us have let this all fall into the schools’ responsibilities. This we cannot do. We must teach our children at home as well. I don’t necessarily mean you should homeschool (though I am an advocate). I mean the important things should not be left to the schools. Teach your children to be patriotic (love their country) and to have good character. The schools will expose them to their literature. We should be reading biographies and historical lessons at home and discussing them around the dinner table. Teach your children to think things through and not just believe what they are taught. The Bible even warns us to test our pastors to make sure what they preach is biblical. (I fear most of us don’t go home and “fact check” our pastors.)

Get Involved in What Your Children Are Learning

We can’t leave the education of our children to the schools alone. We must get involved. Here’s a thought, read your child’s required reading along with them and discuss them. Family time can be learning time, too. Be more selective in what movies you watch as a family and the books you read together. There is a lot of educational help online. I once received a weekly email with a story from history to read and discuss. Homeschool websites are available even if you don’t homeschool. Homefires offers a monthly page of videos and books to use that correlate with each day in history.

You can stear them into developing discernment and creating their own beliefs and attitudes. When my children were young, we enjoyed reading about heroes. Even adult books can be read together in small snippets which children can understand when you are reading together.

A few useful books

The below are books part of a series of biographies called The Sowers Series

Other Heroes I have written about

This blog carries many stories of heroes of faith, especially women.

Susanna Wesley

Elizabeth Elliot

Honey for a Child’s Heart includes an extensive bibliography of books listed by age and ability

legacy link-ups

It’s Your Turn

Are you writing about heroes? They can be from the past, your family, the Bible. We want to read what your have written. Link-up with us for the Month of June.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

How to Have Confidence That God is Enough

How can we know in our hearts that God is enough

Life is hard.  It’s tough. And it’s definitely not fair. 

God is Enough

Life seems to be tearing so many of us apart inside. Somehow, we must learn that our God is enough for all our needs. I know in my own life, that God’s graces are the only thing that has brought me through. In recent years, I have been fighting auto-immune diseases that are causing me great pain. But through it all, God’s graces have been enough for me. (My story was written several years ago HERE.. However, I am planning an update of that series beginning in May.) 

Certainly, there are times that I am discouraged  

I wonder how much more I can bear, but then if I get my eyes back on Jesus and His graces, He carries me through. Just like the poem, “Footprints” says when things are the toughest, that is when Jesus carries me! Then when we look back, we can say as Jacob did, “God was here, and I didn’t even know it!” (Genesis 28

God is Enough Genesis 28:16

One of the Best Gifts from God is Faith 

One of God’s greatest graces to me has been the gift of faith. Thankfully, through every trial, my faith has pulled me through. I have been able to rest in his sheltering arms to get to the other side of the mountain. 

You can take a test to find your spiritual gifts and find that faith is not your strongest gift, but we all have a bit of faith. 

To begin with, we have enough faith to believe that God exists. 

Secondly, we took the step of faith to believe He sent His Son to pay our debts. 

And now we just have to grow that faith until we have a victorious life. Just as the hymn by John H. Yates says… “Faith is the Victory that Overcomes the World!” 

The Apostle Paul told Timothy that his mother and grandmother had the gift of faith and that he (Timothy) had the same gift and he needed to “fan the flames of that gift“. (2 Tim 1:6). We need to work at building our faith. When God gives us a gift, He plants the seeds in our lives and we must do our part to make them grow. He often places us in situations that make our faith grow IF we take the right actions. 

Let’s consider some actions that will grow our faith. 

F – Fear Not 

(or worry not, or fret not, or doubt not, you fill in the blank) (2 Timothy 1:5-14) 

God is Enough 2 Timoty 1:6
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Paul continued in verse 7,  “God has not given us the spirit of fear and timidity, but the spirit of power, love and self-discipline.”  We have to use that self-discipline to stop worrying and start believing the God can work it out. God saved us and he has brought us through so many things already. We need to lean on those facts, rather than worrying about the future (which, by the way, we have very little control of). 

So take on the Australian attitude .. “No worries!” or 

maybe the Bahamian idea “No Problem, Mon!”   or 

the retro theme “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!” 

Choose what you may, just STOP WORRYING! 

A – Acknowledge our Concern & Ask God for help. 

Did you ever notice that the base word in “confidence” is “confide”?  So … maybe in order to have confidence, we should confide in the Lord about our fears and concerns. God wants to know about our concerns. 1 Peter 5:7 And we can have confidence that God will help us!

God is my helper Hebrews 13:6

Matthew 11 says “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” 

It’s true, you know, He really does care.  #confidence #Godisenough Click To Tweet

I – Invoke Your Heart to Praise 

Invoke seems a hard word. Maybe indicating the forcing of something. But isn’t that what we must do? Sometimes praise is hard. Hebrews 13:14-15 says “let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God“. 

Continual Praise .. that means, at times we must praise the Lord, even when it’s hard. 

Even when we don’t want to. 

I am reminded of a time in college. Easter break was coming and I was so ready to get home for a few days. We woke to snow on the ground that Friday and I received a phone call from my father saying I should not come home because the roads between us were too dangerous. I was heart-broken. I went to my final class that morning with a heavy heart. We began class each day with prayer, and guess who the professor called on to pray… ME! 

I didn’t want to pray. 

What could I say to God at this moment? 

I was bummed. 

We bowed our heads and the words came from my mouth. “Thank you for the beautiful snow.” Wow! I really couldn’t believe the words were coming out of my mouth! Where did that come from? But guess what … staying at school brought new opportunities and a wonderful Easter weekend. 

I think if we can muster up a bit of praise and singing, we’ll soon have forgotten the worries and find the joy

T – Trust His Promises 

god is enough Prov 3:5,6
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We’ll never understand what’s going on in the world, but God knows. He sees the whole picture and He knows best. When you feel worries and struggles coming your way. Get into the Word

Better yet, live in The Word always. 

Memorize His promises and lean on them. 

Sadly, too many of us never pick up our Bible, open its pages and read. And those of us who do, do it way too little. There are so many ways to get the Word into your mind. You don’t have to sit down and read it anymore; now you can listen to it on a CD or MP3. You can carry a little scripture card in your pocket. You can tape verses to your mirror or your computer monitor. 

We need to memorize it. Hide God’s Word in our hearts. 

psalm 119:11 God is enough

We can’t trust His promises if we don’t know what they are. 

H – Hide in the Shelter of His Arms 

After we do the aforementioned things, we can then rest in his arms. No Worries

God’s got our back. 

He’s got our future. 

He is in control! 

I love the illustration we were given in the Online Bible Study, A Confident Heart by Renee Swope; we’re in a God Sandwich! The Psalmist said, “You go before me and follow me. You place Your hand of blessing on my head.” (Psalm 139:5) 

God Sandwich
This verse is called the God Sandwich!

That’s when we know that GOD IS ENOUGH. 

Rest in this truth today. We can rest knowing that God is all around us taking care of the details.

So How About it? Let’s Start Living By Faith! 

Mandy Signature
Savannah, GA

This post was inspired by the book, A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope 

Mentoring Resource…Adorned- Living Out the Beauty of the Gospel Together

I have been waiting years for a women’s mentoring resource like this.

This post was previously written in Mandy’s older blog GGMandy dot com. This is an excellent resource of which I still highly recommend.

ADORNED

Living out the Beauty of the Gospel Together

by Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth

{There are affiliate links on the page}

{I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review}

As a pastor’s wife, I have tried different times to encourage our ladies to live out the Titus 2 woman model. I used Bible Studies on the topic but I never seemed able to really get the point across. It wasn’t easy to explain nor or to share why we should live this kind of life. Partly, I had older women whom I respected questioning the principle. I didn’t know how to answer them. But mainly, I didn’t have the right mentoring resource to help me.

Today, we have millennial women begging for direction. But the situation is worse. The older women think the younger women do not want their help. They feel the young women do not want to hear their message. But this is not true.

And I believe “Adorned” is the mentoring resource we need.

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Review: Holy Hustle Planner

The year of COVID-19 has me way behind in 2021. We didn’t celebrate Christmas until mid-January so it’s no wonder that I am just now getting my schedule and plans in order. Is this true for you?

Show me your way, O Lord.

Teach me your paths. 

Lead me in your truth and teach me. 

You are the God of my salvation. 

On You, I wait all day.”

Psalm 25:4-5,

Finding God’s Plan

Finding God’s path has been challenging to say the least. I am baffled how someone with Chronic Illness can struggle even more with being “shut-in”. How is it that my days seem full when I don’t really have that much to do?

Well, being Type-A, I am always wanting to get more done than is physically possible. Those BIG planners only make me have lofty ideas. This planner keeps me from pushing myself too much. I just list my to do’s for the week. (only one per day, max) I’m not nearly as frustrated about what I manage to complete.

images provide by Crystal Stine

PLANNERS GALORE

I have found a lot of beautiful planners. But seriously, they are bulky and way too complicated for the chronic gal. I need simple but pretty. I don’t need stickers or all the minute details; just a place to record doctor’s appointments and a checklist for the things I need to do this week.

Even after 10 years of chronic pain,

I still struggle with overdoing it.

THIS PLANNER WORKS FOR ME

Crystal Stine has come up with the perfect planner for me. It’s pretty with its faux leather cover. It’s lightweight, like a paperback. And simplistic. It offers monthly calendars at the beginning, Then 52 weekly calendars with encouraging quotes to cheer you along the way. And the nice thing is it’s NOT already dated. Start using it anytime and even go into a new year.

Perfect for teachers or homeschoolers or anyone who has a different fiscal year. In the back you will find a year layout where you can put things for the new year or maybe things like birthdays!

I love this #holyhustleplanner! Click To Tweet

And, Oh! By the Way…

Crystal has a whole book about how the handle this Holy Hustle. AND a Bible Study, too! Wow! we can really get on track ’cause she is providing all the guidance we need.

So Go For It!

Purchase yours now!

Mandy





Becoming a Woman of God

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,

Hebrews 12:1

This scripture reminds me of my younger days, cheering on the team of whatever season it was. From the time I was small, we rushed about on Friday nights to get to the ballgame. It was just part of life. My brother was 5 years my senior. So, of course, we cheered him on often as well as our favorite teams.

More importantly, this scripture follows the great Hall of Faith in Hebrews 11 which lists many of the great men and women of God that have gone on before. They lived great lives as an example for us. And there have been many more since that we could add to the list.

Who are you following?

I’ve been thinking lately of the women in my life who have lived godly lives. They left examples for me to follow.

  • Elaine, my mother, demonstrated motherhood, a good marriage, and hospitality.
  • Ruth, Leona, Birdie – my grandmothers who were godly servants. Women I wanted to be just like.
  • Miss Gale – a Sunday School teacher who prayed the sinner’s prayer with me and encouraged me to be confident in my faith.
  • The Hesses, missionaries to Haiti
  • Evelyn – a neighboring farmer’s wife who taught me homemaking skills through 4-H.
  • Mrs. Crouse – a university professor who taught me the importance of health and godliness.
  • Mrs. Charlotte – my pastor’s wife who lives a life of joy and how to be the perfect pastor’s wife. (She introduced me to my husband!)
  • And so many other church ladies who displayed godliness in their own ways. There were other women that I missed getting to know as well.
  • Women whose works I am reading now such as Lysa Terkhurst & Susie Larson

Women I Read About

How many women are there whom I wish that I could know, or at least sit down for a few hours with a cup of coffee and pick their brains?

The woman who really challenged me the most has to be Elisabeth Elliot. I first read her words in my early twenties. I thought she was a little too strict for me. No one needed to live that holy of a life. However, by the end of the book, I was dumbfounded and a great believer in what she had to say.

I regret not taking her words to heart sooner in my life. I am thankful that God protected me from a lot of mistakes I could have made along the way. Looking back, I see how immature I really was.

Becoming Elisabeth Elliot

I recently picked up a new biography of Elisabeth Elliot by Ellen Vaughn. Oh, how I have been soaking up the words. Still, pricked in the heart by the commitment of a young college girl, but knowing it is never too late to become a godly woman. Indeed,

” being crucified with Christ, as the scriptures say, was not morbid but in fact the very gateway to life itself.”

Elisabath Elliot

Those who Guided Elisabeth

elisabeth Elliot Becoming Elisabeth

Ellen Vaughn has helped me know Elisabeth better by introducing me to the women who impacted Elisabeth’s life. This book is not just a biography of Elisabeth but also a glimpse into the lives of many other amazing men and women. Here are a few just to pique your interest…

  • her own parents, Thomas and Katherine Howard
  • Amy Carmichael
  • Betty Scott Stam, a martyred family friend, and missionary
  • Katherine Morgan, an “icon of what a missionary should be”
  • and, of course, her dear husband Jim Elliot

She was fortunate to meet and know some wonderfully godly men and women, but she also soaked up the words of earlier greats such as Deitrich Bonheoffer & Jonathan Edwards.

The Challenge to be a Godly Woman

And so, I now am considering the people that have impacted my life for good. What have a learned from them and what can I still learn from them? Are there women still living that I need to be spending time with and soaking up wisdom and spirituality?

Journaling May Help

Ellen was able to discern a lot about who Elisabeth learned from because Elisabeth had journaled nearly all her life. I was often encouraged to journal but never stuck to it. Thus, I am now trying to catch up and remember all the events in my life. What things had importance to me? Did those things matter and how did it make me the woman of God I am today?

Where are you on this road toward godliness? Are you the woman of God whom you desire to be? the woman God wants you to be? I believe this book Becoming Elisabeth Elliot may help you on your journey.

Let’s Encourage One Another Toward Godliness,

Mandy

I would like to thank Net Galley for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book. I have given my review freely and with honesty.


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