Oh my heavens…
I’ve spent the morning reading back through all your comments, and my heart is overflowing. Although I’m unable to write a response for each one, I’ve been thanking God for all the seeds He’s sending into the world through you. You’re sending seeds of care-taking, encouragement, the arts, giggles, and even grief. The last one may seem strange, but watching a friend grieve her husband’s death in healthy ways taught me more than any book ever could. All that you’re doing and living through when lived in Christ makes a difference in your world.
Thank you for each of your comments. You’re the beautiful field of women that I describe in chapter 15 of Exhale! And here’s what happens when we step into being Seed Senders:
A couple of weeks ago, I shared some testimonies last week of how the message of the book has impacted others, but I also want to share how it’s impacted me.
I hear the same thing over and over again from authors like me who only share what God has taught them. God always tests us on what we’ve written. That’s certainly been true for me with this book! I wrote Exhale in the middle of a fairly major home renovation. Then, a month prior to the launch of the book, my youngest son graduated with lots of family fanfare, and he got married.
It was a lot, y’all. A whole lot.
Do you know what I had to do to keep my head above water? I had to live out the lessons I was writing in the book.
- I couldn’t say “yes” to one more thing no matter how much other people thought I should.
- I had to say no to many good things so that I could live out the missions of keeper of the home, mom and author that God had assigned me.
- I had to release my over-developed sense of responsibility that constantly told me that I’m in charge of everything and therefore to blame for everything.
- I had to examine every interaction with my adulting sons to make sure I was truly helping and not meddling. (If you don’t need anything else in the book, you need the chart on p. 72 in which Cheri shows the contrast between helping and meddling. I’m seriously going to print it and put it on my refrigerator for quick reference when I’m having conversations with my adult sons!)
Now I’m going to testify to the greatness of God and the power of His Spirit. In all the chaos of the last year of my life, I can’t think of a single major meltdown. I’m not saying that I didn’t have any “moments,” but I was able to flex and adjust in ways that I’ve never been able to before.
I’m fully aware that I’m totally incapable of that on my own, so it’s not me bragging on me. I give the credit to God who is the only One who can accomplish change in the hot mess that is me! Now I’m going to say something to you with full confidence (but trembling knees ’cause this is a stretch for me).
The lessons from Exhale, when walked out through the transforming power of God’s Spirit, can change your life. I know it’s true because they’ve changed mine.
If you aren’t one of the winners below, you can get a taste of Exhale at ExhaleBook.com, and you can also download and read a portion for free (the Forward, Introduction and Chapter 1) when you click here.
Next week, I’ll be returning to regularly scheduled blog posts in our series where we’re learning to:
Listen –> Feel –> Do –> Speak
We’ll be starting on the “feel” part of our series, and I’ll send out the freebie “How to Grow Into Your Calling” on the 17th as a free extra to all who subscribe. God’s been whispering to my heart, and I’m excited to share what I’m learning!
Candice Hope (5.21.19 3:44 pm), the winner of the Exhale prize package
Heidi Blair (6.4.19 2:03 pm), the winner of 2 copies of Exhale and 2 necklaces