my name is hope

In yesterday's post, I shared a bit about the "wilderness" season I am in. There have been some amazing resources that have served me really, really well in this time. I have to give the disclaimer that while I have always been a bit of a melancholy soul, the last couple years of our life have been a pressure cooker for that melancholy. I have struggled with anxiety amidst the petri dish that is my life. These resources have been so, so eye opening and helpful for me.

I'd love to share them with you. If you are walking in your own wilderness season, I think these could be resourceful for you:

  • One Thousand Gifts - by Ann Voskamp. It seems like the entire world knows about this book, and yet, I continue to give copies to people who have never heard of it. It is amazing. Amazing, amazing, amazing. Like re-read 5 times in a row amazing (I have!). Read out loud passages to anyone in the room amazing (my husband has fallen in love with it too!). It has changed my life and, next to the Bible, has been the most impactful book I have read in my Christian journey.
  • Jesus Calling, by Sara Young. As I shared yesterday, this is one of the ways I start every day. I read the day's passage and journal about it and the verses that go with it. It is a true gift to me. Each day feels as though it was written just for me. The funny thing is, nearly every other person I know who also reads this book feels the same way. We also read the Jesus Calling for kids with our kids before we hit the road for school. Love it too.
  • My name is Hope, by John Mark Comer. My husband and I were able to get away for a few days last weekend and visit Portland, OR. It was a gift of a weekend on so many levels. One of the huge gifts in it was that we got to attend an amazing church called Solid Rock Church. John Mark Comer is the lead pastor there and we were blessed to get to hear him teach Part 3 of a series titled "my name is Hope". His book was written as his way of sharing all he has learned about walking with anxiety and depression, and more importantly, walking victoriously along side of anxiety and depression. This message series and book will indeed bless many people. If you are in a season that is stretching you in this regard, I would pull up a seat and watch the videos. Order the book. My favorite quote was, "Anxiety is momentary atheism." Ouch. So true. If my worries are eclipsing my trust in God, I am not really trusting God, right? Get ready to do battle - you have a fight ahead of you. But, you will have the tools to wage a Bourne Identity level fight. Or maybe a Sidney Bristow level fight. You choose. Just kick some booty.
  • "At the end of my rope", by Mike Erre. This is a message taught by Mike Erre, a pastor at Mariner's church. I listened to this message via podcast the other day (you can download it in iTunes if you search Mariner's Church in the store. Look for "at the end of my rope" for the Irvine Campus). God has clearly gifted this friend of mine to teach His word! It is courage for the weary soul and hope for anyone who feels like they have more than they can handle on their plate. You just might have more than you can handle. And, what Mike asserts is that God is actually in the business of giving us more than we can handle so that we have to rely on Him. Pull up a seat and watch the video if you have the time today. You will be glad you did.
My hope is that these will encourage you wherever you are. Encourage means to pour courage into, so may courage be poured into your heart, mind and soul.

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