7.5.2016

I wanted you to be one of the first to know

If you’ve been coming to my blog over the years, you probably know that releasing a book is one of the most terrifying feelings for me. I mean really, who in their right mind opens up the most raw places of their heart for all the world to come in and stay a while?

Excuse me while I reluctantly raise my hand in the back of the classroom to claim that level of insanity.

But really, vulnerability is a small price to pay for the amazing seat I have to watch as the messages God places deep in my soul go out to women (and even some men!) everywhere.

And since you’re my blog friends whom I deeply love, I wanted you to be some of the first to hear about my newest book releasing this summer called Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely.

For most of us, the rejections of our past are affecting us more than we realize. All of us are either trying to heal a past rejection, deal with a present rejection or fear that an unexpected rejection is just around the corner. And that’s exactly why I wrote Uninvited.

With Uninvited, you’ll be equipped to:

• Stop feeling left out by believing that even when you are overlooked by others you are handpicked by God.
• Change your tendency to either fall apart or control the actions of others by embracing God-honoring ways to process your hurt.
• Know exactly what to pray for the next ten days to steady your soul and restore your confidence in the midst of rejection.
• Overcome the two core fears that feed your insecurities by understanding the secret of belonging.

It won’t be in stores until August 9th, but if you pre-order today you’ll receive several limited time resources that won’t be available after the book releases:

• First five chapters delivered to your inbox immediately
• 10 printable Uninvited themed coloring pages
• Lock screen collection with quotes from the book
• Exclusive bonus video from me

Pre-order your copy by clicking here.

I really believe this book will help you come to know in the deepest parts of your heart that with Jesus you are forever safe, forever accepted, forever held, completely loved and always invited in.

Today I’m giving away 3 copies of the Advanced Reader Version of Uninvited. To be entered to win, leave a comment below telling me what part of the Uninvited message resonates with your life right now.

6.22.2016

A few really scary days…

You might have noticed I’ve been a little silent on the blog lately. But I want you to know it hasn’t been by choice. I’ve missed you dearly. Which is why I really must update you on what’s been going on in my world.

About a week and a half ago, I was rushed into emergency surgery.

My large intestine had somehow detached itself from my abdominal wall and twisted to the point where blood flow was dangerously restricted. A large section had to be removed. After several days of recovering in the hospital, I was able to go home which is where I am as I type these words.

I’ve been hesitant to explain too much about what happened to me because it’s honestly a crazy story. And I’m not really into crazy.

But, I treasure you as a friend and sometimes friends just need to be invited in and told the bottom line.

God miraculously saved my life.

I don’t say that with drama. I say it with tears in my eyes and the deepest gratitude in my heart.

The surgeon called me on Friday to tell me there was no sign of cancer in the pathology report. Praise God.

But then he said something else that I can’t stop thinking about. “Lysa, I don’t like throwing around the word miracle. But the fact you survived this is a miracle. The pathology report showed your cells were in a state of death.” I didn’t know what to say.

I had no words. Except “thank you.” Thank You, God. Thank you friends who prayed me through this. Thank you to this surgeon who finally figured out why I was in excruciating pain for days and days in that hospital bed.

Thank You that I still get to do life.

So, here I sit. But this quiet morning is different.

I have a sacred realization. And I have a complete refocus on just how precious every second of every day truly is.

Might we all dare to whisper “it’s a gift” to God today?

When the baby is crying and the deadlines are pressing and the stress is mounting and the enemy whispers “just get through this crappy day.” Look up and shame the enemy back to hell by acknowledging today is a gift.

A gift from a good, good Father. And then look, seek, and dive deeply into what a true gift it is.

5.16.2016

The Problem With Pinterest

Have you ever looked at social media and felt like everyone else’s marriage was more romantic, their style more hip, and their house more beautifully decorated than yours?

The comparison struggle. is. so. real.

I’m thankful that my pastor and friend, Steven Furtick, agrees. And he’s here with us on the blog today with some practical tips on how to start seeing beyond the traps social media can lure us into.

“And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)

What – or who – is your standard of comparison? Often, we are insecure because of unrealistic images against which we judge our spirituality and success.

I call it The Pinterest Perspective.

PCMag defines Pinterest as: A socially oriented photo-sharing site in the form of an online pinboard.

I have a slightly different definition:

Pinterest is a visually driven social media platform strategically designed for nonstop, twenty-four-hours-a- day, seven-days-a-week reminders that your kids are not as well dressed as your neighbors‘ kids, that your home is decorated in the most amateur fashion imaginable, that the pictures you take are bland and artless, that you did a terrible job planning your wedding, and that you live a generally tedious, monotonous existence—unlike everyone else, whose lives are categorically awesome at all times.

Yes, I have a bit of a problem with Pinterest.

Of course, I’m not against social media in general or even Pinterest in particular. Social media is just a tool. And the results it generates reflect the intention of the user. That’s where the trouble starts.

See, any time you’re considering your real life accomplishments or problems from a Pinterest perspective, you are judging yourself against an illusion. When we compare our underwhelming reality to other people’s staged, cropped, filtered photos, we jump to the wrong conclusions. Because we started with the wrong context.

The problem with Pinterest is the problem within us. It‘s the perfect platform for our tendency to pretend, to pose, and to perform, all in an effort to bolster a shaky self-esteem.

I want to challenge you today. When you are faced with the temptation to compare yourself to the glories of others, try contemplating the glory of God instead, in the way Paul describes in 2 Corinthians 3:18.

I know this sounds a little abstract – (really pal, contemplate? Contemplate this laundry basket…)

But it can be really simple. To contemplate simply means to think about. To consider. To dwell on.

And there are practical ways we can compare less, and contemplate more:

• Some of our social media scrolling can be so routine that we don’t even realize we’re doing it. But decreasing your time on it might be as easy as moving apps around on your phone. Take the Bible app or First 5 and put it on the first screen in the easiest place to see. Place the social media icons on the last page. This will force you to make the conscious decision to swipe all the way over to your social media accounts, while your Bible apps remain front and center.

• Instead of going on Instagram or Facebook first thing in the morning to see what everybody else is doing and reading their comments on your feed, spend some time in God’s Word. It would be good to do this before you go to sleep as well. Feed yourself something more substantial, and see if you feel stronger.

• Make it a point to write down and say out loud what you’re thankful for several times a week, if not daily. Focusing on what you’ve been blessed with is one of the first steps to getting out of the comparison trap.

God has so much He wants to show you, but maybe you’ve allowed yourself to become blinded by the images and illusions of this world. 2 Corinthians 3 promises a new point of view and a new level of freedom for those who will dare to remove the veil.

UNQU-Book Cover We’re giving away a signed copy of Pastor Steven’s new book (Un)Qualified: How God Uses Broken People to Do Big Things. This book is for anyone who’s ever felt like they just didn’t have what it takes to get through another day. It’s an amazing resource that can apply to your life no matter what season you’re in. To be entered to win, post a comment below with how you’ll be shifting your social media perspective this week. Click here to purchase your copy.