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In All Things English, Faith, Lifestyle, Reading on
9 May, 2017

5 Things Jane Austen Has Taught Me About Life (Pt. 1)

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Well, I certainly hope you’re not tired of hearing about Jane Austen yet. I have been reading through all of her novels within the last year, and I never tire of being able to apply her stories to everyday life.

I was folding laundry the other day (how exciting, I know), and apparently I do my best thinking when I’m completing mundane tasks. As I was matching socks and hanging up shirts, I was reflecting on some of my favorite moments from Sense & Sensibility, which I was reading at the time. The more I thought about it, the more I realized just how many things Austen has taught me about life, love and everything in between. Today I’d like to share just a few of them with you.

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In Faith, Motherhood on
3 May, 2017

Trust in You – A Real Life “Call The Midwife” Story

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Hi friends! You may have noticed that lately I’ve been sharing a lot of guest posts, and you may be wondering why. So – before I share today’s post by my friend Valerie – I wanted to give you a little insight into why that is.

I think it’s important to talk about life. And I don’t just mean “what I ate for lunch” or “my favorite drink at Starbucks” or “that’s a super cute shirt” type of conversations. Sure, those things are fun to talk about, but I mean really talking about the struggles in our journeys. The purpose of this is two-fold: 1) to encourage others, and 2) to remind ourselves of all that God has done in our lives.

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In Faith, Home Decor, Lifestyle on
27 April, 2017

Loving The Space (And Place) You’re In

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“It was such a blessing to find myself thriving in the middle of the pain. Unless you find a way to do that, there’s always going to be this fake illusion that once you get there–wherever “there” is for you–you’ll be happy. But that’s just not life. If you can’t find happiness in the ugliness, you’re not going to find it in beauty, either.” Joanna Gaines

In January 2016, something really exciting happened for me and my husband – we closed on our very first house! We were so excited (and a little stressed), but it’s safe to say we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into.

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In Faith, Motherhood, Trials on
19 April, 2017

My Journey with Postpartum Depression – God’s Story

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Have you met my friend Helen Gentz from Helen’s Corner? Well, today you’re in for a treat! Helen is here to share with us her journey with postpartum depression. She has such a beautiful story to tell, and it honestly brought me to tears when I first read it! My prayer is that you will be encouraged just as I was. – Jen

It was a Sunday evening.

My 2 year-old son was fast asleep. And my 7 month-old daughter had finally gone down for the next few hours. It was my husband Joel’s prime time to decompress after a full day of teaching, preaching, and hosting friends. Mine, too, but I didn’t need to decompress because it was Sunday evening. I needed to decompress because it was like any other day. There I was, sitting in our TV room. Arms crossed. Anger. Tears. And my dear husband sat by me, unaware of how it got this far…this bad…this desperate.  

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In Authentic Beauty, Faith on
6 April, 2017

Faith, Fitness & Freedom in Christ

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Happy Thursday, friends! Today I have the joy of passing my pen to my friend Marsha, who is sharing with us her struggle with body image. Ladies everywhere, I pray you will be encouraged just as I was. – Jen

My testimony starts as a Jesus-loving young girl consumed with how she looked. I watched my mom struggle with her weight, and she desperately did not want me to deal with the same issues. Unfortunately that made me (and her) hyper-focused on it, and I began to believe I was fat, ugly, not good enough, and would never find anyone to love me.

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In Faith, Motherhood, Trials on
23 March, 2017

Trusting in God When Your Child is Sick

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Today I have the honor of hosting my friend Liz from Plunge Deep Climp Steep! I am excited to share with you her story about how she learned to trust God more through the difficulties with her son’s health. I hope you will be just as encouraged as I was. -Jen

He was two years old, blond hair, blue eyes. I felt frozen in time as I watched him go backwards off his chair and onto the wood floor. I gathered him in my arms on the floor as he went from shrieking to shaking, convulsing for about 30 seconds before I was able to talk him down to calmness. My voice seemed to help him gain control.

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In Faith, Marriage & Love on
16 March, 2017

Above All Else: What It Really Means to Guard Your Heart

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Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23

As much as I love these words from Proverbs 4:23, “guard you heart” is quickly becoming my least favorite advice in Christian circles. While I am sure it often comes from the mouths of well-meaning believers, I think the majority of us presume all the wrong things about what it means to follow this command. Too many times, we assume this verse suggests we should protect ourselves from getting hurt, but I don’t believe that’s what this scripture implies at all.

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In Faith, Trials on
7 March, 2017

Taking The Small Steps – Guest Post by Paige McGoldrick

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Hi everyone and Happy Tuesday! Today I have the pleasure of hosting a very special guest blogger, my friend Paige McGoldrick. I have known Paige for a few years now and her family has a very special story, so of course I got really excited when she asked if she could guest blog for me! I pray you are encouraged by her words today, just as I was.

In some seasons God doesn’t call us to move mountains, He just asks us to take baby steps every day. Almost 4 ½ years after watching my father die, I am finally able to look back and see how faithful God was during the excruciating time of terminal sickness, death and grief. And as I look back, I see not only how my whole life was changed drastically from a major life event, but also how God was guiding me through the little steps every day.

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In Faith, Marriage & Love on
1 March, 2017

Why Love is Not the Same as Romance

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As many of you probably know from my tweets and posts, when I watch television, any show I watch has to meet at least one of these two requirements: 1) It must be British, and/or 2) It must not take place in present day. My only exception to this is the inexplicable loveliness that is Gilmore girls. But that’s a story for another day.

It’s no secret that my favorite period drama series is, of course, Downton Abbey. But a close second would have to be BBC’s Lark Rise to CandlefordI stumbled upon this show on Amazon Prime not even a month ago, and when I saw it I remembered that a friend had once recommended it to me in a comment on my blog post about Jane Austen. So, of course, I had to give it a try.

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In Faith, Trials on
21 February, 2017

Victory Comes From Surrender

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Today I have the pleasure of introducing you all to my sweet friend Amy from Cosentino Living. Amy and I connected on Instagram awhile back, but only recently discovered how similar our paths have been! I hope you will be greatly encouraged today as Amy shares her story of God’s faithfulness in her life. Plus, when you’re finished, you can head on over to her blog to read a guest post from me! -Jen

One Sunday back in 2014, I had the incredible opportunity of sharing my testimony before my church family. To this day I’m not entirely sure how the Lord made that happen; it’s not as though I have some drastically crazy testimony. (Although for the record, I think any testimony of the Lord changing someone’s life is a testimony worth sharing! And if you have Jesus in your life, then you have a testimony, my friend). Somehow, God found a way to have our pastor hear my testimony, and decide it would be meaningful for our church body to do the same. Crazy, I know!

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