About the Author

Melissa Michaels is the NY Times Bestselling author of Love The Home You Have and The Inspired Room book. Her blog, The Inspired Room, was voted Better Homes & Gardens Readers' Favorite decorating blog in 2014 and 2015. Melissa is a church planter's wife and a mom to three human kids and...

Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Melissa,
    I love the part where you talk about what we already have is what God needs. He has already gifted us; we just need to tap into God’s story using our God given gifts. For years I had used my gift of leadership to lead MOPS groups, Bible studies, small groups. That was, in some ways, an easier gift to use. Now in my “middle years”, God has called me to use my gift of writing and encouragement to encourage other women in their faith journey. He has given me a lifetime of experiences and stories to draw from. What makes this gift harder is that it calls for me to be vulnerable…to be real. With each post I write, God is peeling away a layer of a mask I have worn for a long time, but you know it is really freeing. I’m not exactly sure where my story is going, but I am “all in” for the ride.
    Blessings to you in your story,
    Bev

    • Thanks Bev, yes, I have found that too as we grow in faith and in age our gifts are used in new ways through the stories we have lived and experiences we have had! That was one of the big things for me when I started with my business and blog, I felt more confident at that age that I did in fact have experiences to share! God uses us right where we are but sometimes it does get harder as we go when we become more vulnerable and real with sharing hearts.

    • Bev,

      Your post here reminds me of a book by Emily Freeman “Grace for the Good Girl”. In it she talks about peeling away the masks women wear to cover up some thing they feel is unworthy of attention or God. It is a good read and I highly recommend it.

      Thank you for being so willing to open up and share yourself with other women. Often times women find themselves in a spot and feel that no one truly understand what they are going through–they feel alone. It only takes one person willing to be used by God to shed light and make others aware they are not alone in their journey!

      God Bless! 🙂

  2. I needed this reminder today. The story is changing in unexpected ways for me and today God is quiet and the details are hard. Thank you!

  3. Thank you for reminding us that at long as we are living (and then even after!) our story is still being written. We are not ever done, or failed, or arrived.

    And I love to connection to “Use What You Have!”

    “Our stories aren’t over when times are hard or things go wrong. Or when God seems quiet. Or when people hurt or desert us. Or when we get the best possible news and we feel like we have have finally arrived at where God wanted us to be, only to find out the story wasn’t over yet and we are back in the wilderness again.”

  4. I really needed to read your story today. We have been struggling with God’s answers this weekend. We are active in our church and we are getting ready to start a 31 week entire church novel called “The Story” by Max Lucado. I am very excited about this venture that it will help grow our church family and strengthen the individual families. I am sort of at the place you are where my kids go to school each day and I am not sure what God’s purpose for me is. I do have a blog and would like to start seeing some income along the way, but that is not showing up yet. I applied for a part-time job at the school, but it is leaning towards that is not what I should do either. We are just having some financial struggles and not sure where our next step is. I can’t really get a job in another town as that would not help our situation and I can’t do a full-time job away from home, because I just can’t handle that. This weekend, my husband’s car died and my car still is about 15 months away from being paid off. So, I just been praying for what he wants us to do that is his will. Thank You for your story.

    • Yes, I’ve been in those chapters! Sounds like you are doing the right things, praying for new clarity but exploring possible directions He may open up for you!

      Thanks for sharing, Angie.

    • Angie,

      Prayers for clarity. May God come and allow you to “use what you have” to glorify Him. I pray your answers come soon.

      God Bless! 🙂

  5. The long story would take too much space, so the shorter response would be if everything always quickly and smoothly fell into place I think we would miss out on a lot of growth and personal deepening of our faith as we learn to trust God through the twists and turns and perplexities of how He leads and guides in our lives, lives that He wants us to yield and trust to Him. The unfolding of His plan usually takes much longer than we ever thought possible but when we look back we can trace the path of the work He was doing all along and in every detail.

  6. I read this and feel like I could’ve written this. We are where you were before you started the church. Thank you for sharing-it’s good to be encouraged to remember we are in the midst of His glorious story!

  7. I loved what you wrote. And I would only add that what I’ve learned from the Bible (and have learned to cling to) is that God isn’t “writing” our story (as He goes)…it has already been written before the foundations of the worlds. The story of my life and where God takes it may be new to me….but it is history to Him…and I find peace and comfort in that fact. 😀

    • That is one of the mysteries, comforts and challenges of a Christ follower, how the story is both written and we can trust His will, yet our free will to follow Him and to cooperate with His story are daily choices with twists and turns that God will use in our life!

  8. Melissa,

    Thank you for this. It’s always important to hear that “the trenches” are leading us to some great victory. It is so true that God can take the gifts and abilities that take a lifetime to develop… the strengths that we know we have, but don’t know how they could possibly do His work…. and combine them and use them in ways that we can’t even imagine. My personal experience recently has been a combining of rhythm and word. I love words, and am a drummer who’s “suddenly” too busy with little kids to make it to church worship team practices, and was feeling that my reduced contributions were beginning to open up a distance between my activities and my spirituality… a distance that God has used to great advantage. He has a funny way of flowing into the empty spaces and filling them with blessings… and now I’m beginning to contribute with worship poetry… rhythmic spoken word… and it scares me right out of my socks… and into His arms.

    Thanks again!
    Heidi
    http://thewordspoken.org

    • That is awesome, Heidi! He does have a funny way of bringing our gifts and the season of our life together in a way that can totally scare us!!, but that faithfulness to serve in new ways bring about blessings we never would have seen otherwise! Love your story!

  9. I remember praying very hard this time last year about a move to WA from GA. Amazon was trying their best to recruit my husband, but it wasn’t the right thing in the end. Funny thing is that we ended up moving 5 miles up the road into our dream house. We’re still waiting on the next piece of the story to be revealed, but for now …
    Psalm 84:7 / They journey from place to place, gaining strength along the way; until they meet God in Zion.

  10. Thank uou for this encouragement Melissa. My husband and I have been in that stage of life where we feel God wants to do something big for several years now. We have stepped put on our own before and it was a huge mistake. This time we are doing our best to be patient but it is very hard at times. Currently we are on the very edge of a huge promotion possibility at his job which would mean moving 7 hours away and possibly within the next two month! We are excited yet scared…still waiting though! That’s the hard part! Literally, we could hear something today or a week from today! It would be so good, in our eyes, to get this position but, only God can know. We have debts from our first years married that we want to pay off so that we can find ourselves back in our passion of ministry. My husband, like yours had been a youth pastor, worship leader, pastor and everything else he needed to be in ministry from a very young age ( his father was a pastor) his dream and gift is preaching but due to some hard times in his life and then having our three children , paying the bills has had to be moved up on our priorities which had meant our dreams taking the back burner. We have tried to honor God by taking care of our family in this way and I pray this job could possibly be our answer to that dream one day closer to coming true again in our lives but most of all seeing my husband back where he loves and thrives! Thank you for the encouragement that the road is bumpy but God will take you where he wants you if you will follow HIS timing!

  11. I love this. Encourages us to be faithful in the everyday things before us and not just wait for life’s big moments to show God (and others) that we mean business when we say we’re following Him.
    Thankyou

  12. Oh my lands! I have been crying out to God for encouragement and this was it today, thank you! We are early on in our church plant and I am feeling the same things you felt, and it’s just been hard! I can’t really put into words all the emotions but I feel on a whole new world after reading your words! Thank you again!

  13. Thank you for sharing your heart. I truly needed to read this today. I am on a journey where I have NO IDEA! I have many dreams and ambitious career choices but do not know how to piece it together. I have no job and many bills, however I have GOD who gives me peace & HIS joy in the midst of this uncertain time. I would love to share your story on my blog. Can you please tell me how I could do this. God is AWESOME!

  14. Melissa,
    Praise God for His leading and for you and Jerry listening and obeying.
    It was a delight to read your post today. May the Lord continue to do a mighty work in and through you and your family.

  15. Your words encourage me and cause me to question my fear. While I know God is the author and maker of all time, I’m in a wait that I don’t want to be in right now (who really ever wants to wait, right?). I just started going back to school for a career that I am uncertain if this is really where I am meant to be. The stress of being a wife, mom, employee and student are really closing in, but I feel like I have to make some kind of move and put forth some effort so God can use me. I just wish I had some vision of where He will use me next (ugh!).

  16. I have experienced a time of waiting as well. Six years ago The Lord stirred my husband and my heart to move to Seattle from Portland to be closer to our goddaughter and support her parents in pastoring. We kept praying, believing and wondering of we heard right. Three years later a possible job opportunity came available but it would be another 3yrs before the job was offered.
    We waited because we wanted God to get ALL the glory. We also wanted to examples of trusting God and waiting. The faith walk continues. We are so glad we believed.

  17. Melissa, i clicked on your story when I visited {in}courage to check out my own little guest post (this Thursday–Sept. 19th–thanks for asking:-)
    I’m delighted to find another Christian writing soul in Seattle. We MUST get together somehow. Anyway, thanks for sharing your story. I looked at the Voyage website–your church plant sounds like what God did with us in the 70’s…and He’s up to a revival again, it looks like.

    God bless you and your work!

    Jody Collins

  18. Thank you so much for this. I’m in a period of waiting, unsure how God will help resolve can difficult situation and where He wants me to go from here. I believe part of the process is leaning how to wait… to listen. Thank you for the encouragement!

  19. Melissa, thank you for this…I love your outlook on life! I fancy myself as the star of a colossal movie and often wonder which way to turn, ask what is my God-sized dream, what’s next, etc. I had to look up what beautiful but unfamiliar harbor you stepped out into. I raised my family in Federal Way, and my son still lives in Bremerton. I am going to tell him about your church. Thanks so much for this! When I go back to visit him, I will come by church and say hi!

  20. Melissa,

    Superbly written post!

    I’ve heard it said “into every life a little rain must fall”. I believe in the truth of that statement. God didn’t promise us “rosy” lives. He stated their would be trials and tribulations. With each trial He is refining us, making us more like Him and drawing us closer to Himself.

    Prayers for everyone that they draw super close to God during their trials and learn to use the very Gifts God has given them!

  21. Melissa, Thanks for inspiring us with your story. I love how God directs our steps and gives us the courage to step into new adventures. It’s a process, isn’t it? This hearing from God and stepping out. But He is faithful. Part of my adventure journey started when my husband and I finished our honeymoon in Bellingham, WA (near where you live) and ended up staying there for nine years. We, too, had to wait on God at times, and certainly trust Him for finances and decisions, and then with the kids, when they came along. But what a great journey. And now I’m trusting him with a new book that’s scheduled to release next year. I’m always praying the Lord has His way. And I love the verse, “Commit your ways to the Lord and your plans will succeed.” No matter what happens, when we commit everything to the Lord, we succeed. Such a comfort. Blessings to you and your husband as you serve.