Prayer can be a challenging practice, but Amy shares a simple but profound method she was taught that has reminded her to listen. God speaks when we’re listening! Want to try something new to reinvigorate your prayer life? Watch Amy’s short vlog, print the downloadable and spend some time with God. He’s waiting just for you!
Amy Carroll is a speaker and writer for Proverbs 31 Ministries. She’s the author of Breaking Up with Perfect as well as the director and coach of Next Step Coaching Services. As a woman who loves a great story and a challenging idea, co-hosting the Grit ‘n’ Grace podcast has become one of her favorite things.
Amy and her husband live in lovely Holly Springs, NC. You can find her on any given day texting her two sons at college, typing at her computer, or trying to figure out one more alternative to cooking dinner. Share life with Amy at www.amycarroll.org and find out more about her speaker coaching services at http://www.nextstepcoachingservices.com/.
I was sick when I was pregnant and not just a little bit. Doctors diagnosed me with hyperemesis, which I loosely translate into “throwing your guts up day and night.”
When I got pregnant the second time, people assured me every pregnancy is different. And they were right. The second time was worse.
I sank into despair
For a woman who had led a largely sheltered and happy life, the sickness and helplessness overwhelmed me. Even though I knew the suffering would end with a blessing, my baby boys, I drifted from discouragement to despair. And then I sank. I also followed a harmful pattern that made everything worse. For the first time since I had fallen madly in love with Jesus, I didn’t pray. I didn’t read my Bible. Instead, I withdrew from God.
Just a month after my second son was born, I developed a close friendship with a woman named Linda whose sons were the same age as mine. We were both sick during our second pregnancy, but her nausea had a different source. It was caused by the chemo she was receiving for a rare and aggressive form of breast cancer.
Faced with a terminal illness, a new baby, and a grieving family, my friend didn’t react to overwhelmed by pushing God away. She drew close to Him.
In her truly overwhelming circumstances, she administered David’s remedy given in Psalm 62:8, “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.” (NIV, emphasis added)
What my friend taught me about seeking God
Instead of withdrawing from God like I did, Linda’s secret was that she withdrew each day with God. Linda brought all her emotions to God and let Him help her. She didn’t try to fake cheerfulness in His presence or avoid Him completely. Instead, she trusted Him with her feelings and found Him to be her refuge.
If you’ve made my mistake and developed a pattern of withdrawing from God instead drawing close, I have an action step for us to take. Let’s set a reminder on our phone or a write a note on our calendar each day at a specific time that says, “Pour out your heart to Him.” When our daily time arrives, let’s take the next five minutes to bring our honest feelings to God and ask Him to help us with them.
Creating a new pattern of withdrawing to Jesus in overwhelmed times instead of hiding from Him means we access His power, strength and peace to face the day. We’ll not only build deeper trust in God, but just like my friend Linda, we’ll strengthen and inspire others.
One Small Win: In the past, have I responded to overwhelmed by withdrawing from God or with Him? What steps can I take to either change or strengthen that pattern?
Amy Carroll is a speaker and writer for Proverbs 31 Ministries. She’s the author of Breaking Up with Perfect as well as the director and coach of Next Step Speaker Services. Amy and her husband live in lovely Holly Springs, NC with a bossy miniature dachshund. You can find her on any given day texting her two sons at college, typing at her computer, reading a book, or trying to figure out one more alternative to cooking dinner. Share life with Amy at www.amycarroll.org and on Facebook.
Is it hard for you to reach out for prayer? Do you feel guilty or like you are being a burden?
I took some time to talk with my good friend, Renee Swope, and ask her about a blog post she wrote about asking for prayer called, “When You Need Prayer But Hesitate to Ask“.
She shares why we fear asking for prayer, what we are missing out on by not asking, and what baby steps we can take in order to ask without feeling like a burden.
Mentioned in this episode:
Renee’s Office in what was her master bedroom:
What do you do when everything you know comes Undone?
From a “conquer the world” kind of a gal to a “cowering in the corner” woman, Michele Cushatt walked through a long journey from fear and panic to an unwavering confidence in God after a devastating cancer diagnosis.
Join us for a special message from Michele recorded before her surgery in November for the beginning of her fourth battle with cancer. Michele wants to share with listeners:
– God sees you and will provide you with the strength you need
– The peace she carries wasn’t easy but is only through God
– No matter how dark and big your circumstance, God is BIGGER
Listen in and check out Michele’s book Undone where she reveals more about her journey and shows how complication turns into a beautiful canvas, angst into joy, and the unknown into an adventure.