Here’s all I’ve been able to write about Ecuador so far…

on January 23, 2015 in (in)courage, Compassion with 3 comments by

I know.

I need to tell you about how I got trapped in a bathroom at a gas station on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere Ecuador.

I need to tell you about the Compassion guys I sponsored- I call them my Ecuadudes.

I need to tell you that I was the first and only team member to puke and how my mom told me she was proud because our family is always competitive and loves to win.

I want to write about Ecuador, but I’m still processing and thinking and figuring out how to tell you alllll the things I want to tell you without making you sit and listen to me talk for an hour or twelve.

But so far?

This is all I can write about. The two kids who sang. And the leaders who make them feel safe enough to be brave.

Compassion Ecuador - Jan. 2015-112

I’d love for you to pop over to (in)courage and read about it.

If you’d like to sponsor a Compassion kiddo from Ecuador, you can find one here!

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Are you new around these parts? Well welcome!

Hi. I’m Annie. I write books for my job.

You can read more about me here.

You can follow me on twitter here.

You can like me on facebook here.

You can follow me on pinterest here.

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3 Comments and Responses

When my small group schooled me.

on January 21, 2015 in Gal Stuff with 13 comments by

I just have to tell y’all what happened last night at small group because while it makes me look like a bit of a buffoon, it shows how incredible my small group is.

So we are doing Joy Eggerichs’s Illumination Project. It is incredible and I think any small group would benefit from it. This week was all about how Joy entered into ministry and the catalyst that got her there.

And during this week’s video, she spent good time talking about a painful breakup and how that launched her into a new season and eventually into ministry.

When the video ended, we discussed a host of topics, asked questions, shared some heart stuff. And when things got quiet, thinking about Joy and her ministry birthed out of a really dark time, I said, “sometimes it makes me mad that God uses the painful things in my life. Like, it’s hard for me that some of the things I don’t want to write about- like singleness- are the posts that really matter to people. I don’t always like sharing the things He asks me to share. Sometimes I don’t like sharing the parts of my life that are hard.”

And then Jordin, one of my girls, looks at me and says, “yeah. I get that. But we live in a fallen world, and we don’t get everything we want, and bad things happen to good people. I guess I look at it like a gift that God takes the bad things and redeems them to good things. It’s like when you share your stories and people are impacted, God is redeeming the hard times. God using your pain is actually really Him being kind and making your pain matter.

And then she dropped the mic.

(Not really. :) We don’t use a microphone in small group.)

But man did God convict and speak to my heart in that moment.

He brings victory in my life by going right to the place where I feel defeated and asking me to share from there.

What I was viewing as an unfair use of my pain? God is actually seeing as His redeeming hand.

What I get mad about? It’s actually God’s grace in my life.

What I wish He would leave alone? He uses FOR MY GOOD.

I call it a disappointment, a pain, a hurt. He calls it a gift.

AND HE IS RIGHT.

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I needed to be reminded of allllll of that.

Maybe you needed that reminder today, too. That God is good and right and true and using all things for the good of those who love Him.

Maybe you needed a good solid reminder that the gal on the other side of this screen (me!) is far from perfect.

Or maybe you need a reminder that your pain matters. And God will use it.

So here is your reminder:

Your pain matters.

God will redeem it.

He uses all things for His glory and for your good.

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Happy Wednesday, friend. Praying these things for you today. Really.

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13 Comments and Responses

A Brave Story : Kourtni

on January 21, 2015 in #thatisbrave with 1 comment by

thatisbravesquared[Once a week, I am going to be sharing with you a brave story sent in from a reader. You can comment, respond, encourage. Want to submit your own story or a story of a brave friend of yours? Head to thatisbrave.com!]

This week’s #thatisbrave story comes from Kourtni. Cute name, huh? This story is so important, especially during the holiday season when “family” is such a thing. Her words and name are used with her permission.

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Since I was in high school, I’ve struggled with feeling beautiful and loved. My mother was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia when I was young, so I had to grow up fast and basically play the adult role at a young age. When a girl needs her mom most, during adolescence and such, I wasn’t able to experience that comfort or encouragement. Over the years I’ve learned (still learning to this day), that the Lord loves me more than anyone and pursues my heart daily. He calls me beautiful, even when my heart doubts. I am HIS and loved so much, I’m thankful for this struggle, because the struggle is a beautiful process in learning to love and trust in the god who made me.

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If you have any encouragement for Kourtni and her brave story, leave it below in the comments.

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one response

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