About the Author

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, heart-encourager, and grace-needer. She's the best-selling author of "A Confident Heart" and her new book, "A Confident Mom" is releasing Fall 2021. Renee is also the familiar voice of a friend to women around the world as former Proverbs 31 Ministries' radio co-host and executive...

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  1. Renee,
    It used to be terrifying for me to admit that I wasn’t doing “fine”. I was that girl that had it all together and I felt like that was what was expected of me. It wasn’t until God brought me to the end of myself, with no where else to turn, that I started to open up. I have since realized, as you so beautifully expressed, that God is actually glorified in my weakness. When I am weak then He is strong and by being “fine” all the time, I was actually robbing God of His opportunity to take center stage where He belongs. I was also robbing others, as you said, to feel normal around me.
    I love your definition of “FINE” and will call that to mind when I’m tempted to answer, “I’m fine” when I’m really not. Thanks for a post that encourages us all that we can be human.
    Blessings,
    Bev

    • Hi Bev! Thank you for sharing and your encouraging heart. Isn’t it such a relief to know we don’t have to have it all together? Not for Jesus; not for others. So grateful for this grace place and community where we’re free to not always be “fine” {together}.

    • I too have had this same experience. I have had the fear, doubts, questions, does the person really want to know? We don’t want to burden others with our situations, they usually have enough on their own plates. But, when we do take that risk we might as was the case in today’s reading of having an opp. to make a new friend, pray and get to trust someone who truly cares.
      I agree, pray and let God take care of the rest. He always knows what is best. Mary

  2. Thank you so much for this Renee. I too am learning it’s ok to not be fine all the time. The Lord has shown me there is a lot of pride in myself when I pretend to be fine in order to look put together in front of others. It’s so easy to hide our real hearts in the shell we call bodies. And I’m seeing with my own eyes this is a barrier to authentic community which I long for. Indeed praying that God’s strength would be made perfect in our weaknesses.

    • Yes indeed. Pride and a barrier to community. Such good insights to add to the list of reasons we don’t need to pretend we’re “fine” anymore. Thank you so much for sharing Stephanie!

  3. Thank you, Renee, for your honesty. You always hit me where I am. As a mama with grandchildren with my oldest, one starting college and an adopted sweetheart of five years old who struggles with so much that we are still discovering; we are at so many different crossroads. I don’t feel ‘fine’ many days lately. God has brought us through some much loss and blessing these last three years. I am thankful there are many roads to ‘normal’ and God is with me and my family walking down all of them. Thank you for your willingness to be faithful and real. God bless you and your sweet family!

    • Lee, so much of what you describe sounds so very heart-familiar. Yes, many roads that lead to God’s normal for us. It takes time for our hearts to adjust to all the changes and be ok with them. I love that we can even find beauty in the brokenness of not being “fine.” So glad you’re here today.

  4. Renee,
    It takes courage to allow ourselves to feel or to even realize when we are weak. You demonstrated courage when you allowed yourself permission to be able to say this is what is really going on… what I love most of all is you had a friend that really cared enough to ask and mean it. Its not often we “strong” women have that in a friend. We are expected to be that for others but they don’t necessarily know how to listen and pray. I have one friend that I can do that with but many who expect that from me. Blessings on you and your friend for the honesty that you both have.

    • Those friends are a true gift, August Rose. And yes, you’re right. We strong (yet oh so weak) women need courage and grace to ‘not be fine’ and just let God be enough. I hope that in our weakness and honesty others can see how much we need Him, and them sometimes too. 🙂

  5. How timely this post is. I’m in a situation with a family member this week who has not been honest for the past year when questions are asked. We haven’t been able to care for the individual well because we haven’t known the truth about what’s really going on. If we open ourselves up to others in vulnerability and honesty, then they are able to help and encourage. Be brave sisters, people close to you want to care for you. Will you let them?

    • Oh Ali. My heart hurts a little reading your post. Praying for your family member to realize it’s ok to not be okay. And that it’s safe to let you love them and care for them. Satan has a way of casting shame on us for needing others. Praying for grace and His nearness to be your good and their’s today. Let’s be brave!!

  6. Renee,

    I have had many times when I found it difficult to be transparent and ask for prayers. You see, I have a prodigal daughter who has this need to learn everything the hard way. Fear and pride kept me from “spilling it” and asking for prayers. I didn’t want people to think badly of my daughter or me. So I kept it all inside and prayed by myself or with my husband. But then I remember the cartoon of a man sitting in a boat waiting for God to rescue him because his house was under water. He had turned down help from others waiting for God to just do it. As if those other boaters were not “God’s” help. I have learned to become humble and transparent and ask for prayers. My daughter is still prodigal, but I know God will use her current situation to bring her back to him. Thanks for sharing your story.

    • Oh Paula, I know that hard place. Sounds like you’re finding just the right balance of being transparent but also honoring your daughter’s story. So hard when we need someone to cry with and carry our broken hearts to the cross, yet we don’t want them to think less of the one we love or of us. Thank you for sharing.

  7. I think that how I answer that question would be depend on who is asking, where we were and the circumstances. If I were in the church lobby, or any public place, I am most likely to not want to draw attention to myself by showing emotion. I also wouldn’t admit to just anyone how I really feel. There are select few friends who know me well and who I would trust with opening up to. That being said, the answer is often found in your own outlook on life. You can choose to positive in any and every situation. It is definitely not an easy thing to do, but with prayer and through God’s power, you can change your attitude on how you perceive a certain situation, remind yourself that ” … all things work together for the good of those who love Him ….” and that nothing we go through isn’t already known by God. He has the answers, the knows the outcome and he gives us the strength to get through it – including providing a listening ear or friend at just the right time.

  8. When I got the email this morning on this topic, I thanked God. I have been struggling with this for quite some time. I am a strong woman who would never walk away from anyone in need of my time. My struggle is people IWW me as so done who doesn’t have struggles. I struggle all the time but I know God is beside me during this struggle and that eventually it will be alright. Somehow I have ended up alone….I don’t have anyone I can share my human pain, feelings, insecurities or hurts with. If I answer honestly when asked “how are you?” …the story quickly turns to what is bothering them or they smile and walk away. I know that sometimes people don’t know how to deal with their “rock” needing help…but what do I say? When it rains and I have no umbrella…I get wet. If I cut myself…I bleed. When my heart is broken I am sad too. I’m human and like them I have my moments too. I just don’t know how to convey that to others in a way that will matter. I pray…yes all the time but human me needs to be able to lean on a kind shoulder sometimes….frustrated.

    • I hesitated and almost changed the subject of this post, because I didn’t want to talk about a topic that has lots of layers, complexities and questions with not-so-easy answers. What DO we do when we have no one who really wants to listen? No one who has time to step into our messy, “I’m-not-doing-so-great” days?

      I’ve been there, many times. In different seasons.

      And I knew God wanted us to “go there” today. So, I said okay and pulled up a chair to start the conversation. Im glad you’re here at the table Joyce, open and willing to share the hard stuff.

      Jesus, You know how much Joyce longs for a heart-friend to be there for her, too. And only You know who and where she can find that. Bring a new friend her way, a new woman in town who doesn’t know anyone, and who needs the kind of friendship Joyce would love to build.

  9. Hi Renee,
    I have come to discover that I have friends for everything….I have those I can go to lunch or dinner with, those that I am competitive with, and then there are those whom I share my innermost being with. I share my true feelings and concerns, and yes, fears. I can be honest, and shed those tears that need shedding, listen to their wisdom, and then pray about it. Thank you so much for posting today. It makes me realize how very lucky and Blessed I really am!

  10. Renee I really enjoyed your blog about being fine. As for me I’m NOT fine not in the physical sense or the emotional sense for that matter. I’m going to be real with you and I’m going to try to spare you the details if I can. As of the last week of June I took a fall and wiped out busted my head open taking an ambulance ride to the hospital to get stitches to my noggin. Well the next day I had delayed chest pains so I made an appointment with my dr. He said that’s not uncommon. But for my peace of mind he ordered chest ex-rays to make sure everything’s OK. Well I’m still in pain. When I called him back to find out the results of the ex-rays he wants me to come back to see him today July 11,2014 at 1 P.M. central time. I’ve been prayin’ my heart out that I’m going to believe the report of the Lord and NOT the dr.’s. Please do the same Renee. I thank you in advance. P.S. Don’t get me wrong Renee I still like my dr. 1 MORE THING! GOD BLESS YOU! <3

    • Beth I am so sorry for the pain you are experiencing this day. It is nearly 1pm (in my time zone anyway) so please know I am praying for you now as you meet with your Dr. I pray that you know God’s peace and comfort in the midst of this turmoil.

    • Im praying for you right now Beth!! Have you seen the doctor yet? Please let us know how you are. Here are some promises from HIs heart to yours:

      I will never abandon you, Beth. Hebrews 13:5 I see all your hardships and I care about your suffering. Psalm 31:7 You can trust that I will cause all things to ultimately work for your good because you love me and are called according to my purposes. Romans 8:28

  11. Hi Renee,
    I experienced this just this week. My husband struggles with bipolar disorder, and has not been doing well for over a year. I finally shared some of my struggles with some church friends this week. Just being able to tell someone what we are going through, and being able to cry with someone, helped tremendously. They are praying for me, and I feel so relieved to share my burden. I don’t know why it is so hard to ask for help, but I am so glad that I did.

    • Joselyn, if you don’t mind me asking, what symptoms does your husband show? I’m sad to say that my son was addicted to prescription drugs for 2 maybe even 3 years. He quit his job, he will not work, he is hateful at times. My life is a basket case. I am learning to lean more and more on Jesus and trust his word, but it is the hardest thing in this world that I have ever been through. He will not go to a doctor, he only does what he wants and chooses to do. He also has OCD now that drives me crazy. Since he will not see a doctor I was just wondering if he might be bipolar? I work with a girl that is on medication for it and she is doing great.

      • Praying for you and your son Patsy. Here are some promises for your heart, straight from HIS!! I pray they will give you strength and hope:
        I will save you, Patsy, in the midst of your troubles. Psalm 138:7
        I am near to you, Patsy, whenever you cry out Deuteronomy 4:7
        When problems arise, Patsy, call to Me and I will answer you. Psalm 86:7

        • Patsy,
          My husband was moody, but more than just moody. He would suffer severe depression, and then swing into severe anger. He also started drinking alcohol every night. The medication helps his mood swings to even out, and he even acts happy sometimes. I was able to find a general M.D. (medical doctor) that had experience treating bipolar disorder. I would encourage you to make an appointment with a doctor, and go with your son if you are able to. I will be praying for you. May God grant you peace in this time of trouble. “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27

    • So proud of you Jocelyn for being brave. Im know that took courage but I can feel the peace and deep sense of relief in your words, knowing you are not alone in this. Here’s a verse God laid on my heart for you ~ No matter what happens, He will not leave you. When you pass through the waters, He will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. Isaiah 43:2

  12. God bless you Renee. I too try to keep my struggles to myself. In recent months I have learned that if I ask for prayer, or let someone in on a situation that I am struggling with, I find out that other people help me feel normal and that I am not alone.
    You have the sweetest way with words. God always sends you my way when I need you the most.

    • What a sweet gift on encouragement you are Patsy. 🙂 And yes, you are so right. When we’re willing to be real and let people in, it’s amazing how listening ears and “me too” nods can make us feel normal and like we’re not the only one who struggles. Thank you for sharing!

  13. Renee, I love the open, honest, transparent way you share your heart with us…we’re right there with you! For the past 14 years I have had the blessing of having a dear friend named Linda, with whom I can be really open, honest, and transparent. We get together weekly, sometimes twice a week, for lunch, prayer, and accountability, sharing our joys and sorrows in this daily walk of life. I have written a little more about our friendship with photos at this link on my blog…
    http://bethwillismiller.blogspot.com/2009/12/bedouin-dinner-with-beth-moore-in.html

    • Wow, what an amazing gift of friendship you and Linda have. Those kinds of relationships don’t just happen. Im sure your friendship is something you have both obviously committed to and worked on. {{Beautiful}}

      PS> Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement. I love being here and being part of (in)courage!

  14. Yes, It is very difficult for me to truly share what is going on with me, my kids or my personal issues. I expect everyone to judge me, or make fun of how I feel about things. So most people just hear, I’m here, or I’m fine. Only a select few hear all the details and even then they sometimes judge me and consider me high maintenance. It is a tightrope for certain.

    • Thank you Maryann for being honest, and for sharing how it can be difficult. It’s especially hard if we’ve been judged or made fun of.

      Im praying that somehow, today’s conversation here might give us the courage to go first. What if we are the ones in our generation who decide to be real no matter what, because we’re held so closely in the arms of God that even if no one understands or gets us, we know He does and we know that here, in this community, there are many who get us and love us just as we are.

      Let’s link our arms and our hearts and create a safe place for our souls to be brave so we can go into the world, just as we are! Loved. Cherished. Known. Accepted. Secure. Significant. Even on the days when we’re not fine.

  15. This is why I started blogging. As we began the long journey to adoption, with all the ups and downs, I wanted a place to share exactly how things were going and how I was feeling, and people could choose if they wanted to read or not. I struggle with being too real, when all people want is a “fine, everything’s great.” I’m grateful to have found close friends who really want to know, and I love being a friend who really wants to know the truth, even when it’s messy. Thanks for this post, Renee. We need to wrestle with issues of intimacy and trust, and that it’s okay to ask for help and prayer.

    • Thank {you} Melanie. I love that you named this “wrestling with issues of intimacy and trust.” That’s exactly what we need to do, together.

  16. Sure needed this devotion today. God is always right on time. I am one of those I’m fine people. And yes I know in my heart that when its not fine it’s ok to say so. Without the prayers of others I don’t think I would make it. I need to learn to share more with my friends. Thank you for reminding me its OK

    • Grateful Karen, that God used today’s words to nudge your heart to remember how He loves to love on you through others support and prayers. 🙂

  17. Renee,

    I’m not fine and since you gave me strength and the ability to join your blog. I need and request prayers.

    My daughter just got engaged and my husband doesn’t think that her finance will lead their household in a spiritual way, has taken advantage of our daughter since they live together and many more than I can type. I see in this young man a man whom loves God and loves my daughter to the end of the earth. Yes, I think differently and want to show the love of our Lord to remind them to follow God. When friends at church congratulate him, he asked them not to. Please help me.

    • Sheryl, thank you for sharing and being open with your needs. Im praying right now for you and your family. I am asking Jesus to move in a way that only He can – to unite your husband’s heart and yours, to give him the desire to come alongside your daughter and “be” love as she and her fiancé walk in love towards marriage. He can make a way where there is no way, and that is what Im praying for!!

  18. Thank you so much for this post. People seem to look to me to be strong and solid in my faith but I have had years and years of illness and loss. I am 70 years old and just learning not to deny others the blessing of praying for me and sharing my load. Now I am feeling stronger because of it. And let me encourage you about Apraxia. Our grandson was diagnosed with it and after years of verbal and occupational therapy he is talking up a storm at age 7. God designed your little girl, put you in her life as her mother. He doesn’t make mistakes and you will be a great mother with a great daughter! Blessings to your family.

    • Thank you sweet Betty!! God has moved in miraculous ways in our sweet Aster’s life and speech over the past two years. She’s five and a half now and talking so much more. Still a long ways to go but she’s come soooo far. It’s just amazing. And there is nothing I love more than being her mama! Just had a lot of hard transitions and adjustments to get us here. 🙂

      So glad that God got your attention and showed you the power and blessings of letting others be there for you through prayer. It’s amazing what an impact that can make!! Thank you for sharing the difference you’ve experienced!

  19. Joyce- I can so relate. God is faithful. Sometimes it’s very nice to have support/ comfort from others though. I continue to struggle with those same things you mention. may we all find strength in God as He leads us to see others as He sees them/ us.

  20. I am living with several chronic invisible illnesses, and although I may look fine, I am anything but fine. I can’t tell you how many times in church I would answer “fine”. I guess it’s easier to say, than trying to explain that I’m in pain, so tired and exhausted on a daily basis, ect. I have been hurt from lack of compassion and understanding within my church and no matter how many times I have asked for care or prayer, I feel hurt. I know that God feels and sees my hurting heart. I just wish others could see it too.

  21. I’m fine! It has coming my normal words the last four years. I’ve been through major 10 hour back surgery, to a complete year recovery, to the lose of a friendships, betrayal, helping take care of my sick dad, to losing my dad, to having our first daughter being a senior this year, to my middle daughter moving to the middle junior high building and my youngest daughter’s best friend moving from next door next month.

    I have harden the skin over my feelings and heart to anybody near me. I’m always afraid to cry because I don’t know if I can stop. I know God has taken care of me every step of the way. I have a deeper relationship with Him because of all of the last four years. I know He is there for me every step of the way. As for community, I have pushed that part of my life away.

    Thanks for these words of encouragement. I will try to work on this a little harder.

    God Bless!

  22. I think that it is also an encouragement to new Christians when we open up. Sometimes when you are a new Christian and you have a problem or something goes wrong they might start to think they “lost” their salvation. So it is important for them also to see us ‘older” Christians be real and yet also show that in that realness God is walking through this with us so that new Christians don’t give up and think that they are not good Christians.

  23. What has grown to my fear, is that my ‘problems’ are nothing compared to what everyone else is going through. There are so many that are hurting and in real trouble. My little bumps in the road are nothing. I know that God cares for all things, but at the same time, I want to be there for everyone else. For the real trials. Can both happen, I want to believe it. I see my mom and grandmother carrying so much. I feel so weak and not up to standard. Thanks for your posting. I am going to meditate on it and what God is saying to me, my ‘problems’, my helping attitude… “I can do everything” attitude. I want to let God be my strength.

  24. Its very difficult for me. I am a private person and my circle of trusted people is very small. Especially if its a person I don’t do life with daily. I tend to believe more often than not, people want the “I’m fine” answer and look uncomfortable when you open up. Sometimes I get very tired of the surface relationships. It makes me pull inward and not want to be around it. Its very difficult to imagine putting myself out there repeatedly if I’m the only one willing. Maybe something God wants me to work on. Thanks, Renee.

    • Paige, I so relate to what you said in this post as I too am a private person with a small circle of trusted people who tends to retreat inwards. About 6 years ago, I decided to be totally real with a friend as I was too weary to carry all of my burdens by myself … I opened up and asked her to lift me up before God in prayer. I soon realized that God changed me through this. He soon allowed my authenticity to speak into the lives of others and now 6 years later I have built four “deep” friendships with ladies who probably would still just be saying “I’m fine” to one another if one of us had not been willing to be obedient to God and say “my life is a mess … please pray for and with me”. Paige, I think you too will find that many people are just hiding behind masks – they want nothing more than to know that they are not the only ones whose lives are “not fine” but they are living in fear … fear of judgement … fear of rejection … because everyone else around them “seems” to be living such “great” lives. So Paige I challenge you to keep putting yourself out there as God can, and will, use your authenticity to crack through the masks of the people around you and he will give both they and you true freedom in Him. I pray God continues to stretch you and mould you.

  25. I say I’m fine but inside I’m not. My son married an abusive woman 12 years ago. We have recently found out just how abusive she is. My husband and I are not allowed to see our grandchildren as a form of her punishment towards us for standing against her control. Our son goes in and out of the typical abusive cycle with her. He treats our family with such disrespect. If she knew he had relationship with us, she threatens him. Such a terrible mess and so extremely painful. I spend time asking God to come to our defense. But the injustice continues. And I deal with anger and grief. My husband is being blamed because he suggested divorce. I typically don’t think divorce, but in this situation I honestly have. It is such a sickness. I feel stuck.

  26. I think that I live in the I’m fine world because I don’t want to burden others with the things I carry with me that make me “not fine.” so, I just give it to God – all of it, He can carry it. and occasionally I will open up to someone and share what I am really feeling.

    I have a grandson, who at 28 months was diagnosed with apraxia. we all took sign language classes and communicated with him in that way. Now he is 10 and after speech therapy he talks a million words a day!

  27. Renee,
    I am so not fine. But had you met me in the lobby of the church, I would have said “I’m fine. How are you?” Someone commented that it’s pride and I do think that’s part of it, but I also figure people have their own problems and are not able to deal with me and mine. Sounds like pride, too, doesn’t it? All I know is, I’m at the end of my rope and I am not fine. So thank you for your post. I’m going to call a friend now and tell her I’m not fine.

  28. Great timing to receive this email. As a single mom, I have been through so much and have wanted to really let people know how I am, but since over hearing the woman’s group leader tell someone I always had problems when I had taken the risk of being real with her when she asked me one day how I was doing , I stopped being real. After that, I always said I was fine when I wasn’t. Stupid me thinking she really cared especially since she was head of our woman’s group Had shared the real me with her one day asking her to pray for me and my family. It took a long time for me to get over that and even still to this day, I am quick to say I am fine. I have a few close friends and they are who I share with now. We as Christians need to be careful how we treat each other, especially those in leadership positions.

    • Absolutely agree . There are many people especially in church who really do not want to know My prayer is to find just 1 friend that I can be real with . I have been a single mom to 7 children for most of my adult life I have always wanted someone to talk to but so far God has not answered that prayer .

  29. What a wonderful post, Renee. I was here about 15 months ago where I simply had no energy to tell people I was fine when I was an absolute mess (and had been for the last 5 years trying to hold in a family secret. I love your acronym for FINE!) For me, it wasn’t so much that I didn’t want to tell them I wasn’t fine, it was that I wasn’t ready to tell most people the WHAT of why I wasn’t fine, and I was not comfortable saying I wasn’t fine but then not sharing any other details. It certainly wasn’t a 5 minute catch-up topic, and I didn’t want to see these people day after day and still have the same depressing, “I’m not fine” response and, as you said, appear to become high maintenance.

    But after I did start opening up to select few, I found that I was so blessed with His grace to handle my situation better and that God led people into my life to not only help me deal with my situation but find a way to help my children deal with it better too.

    I think the flip side of this important lesson is to identify when others say they are fine and we think maybe they are not to be able to come back with, “well if you want to talk more sometime somewhere else, I’m here to listen.” When people don’t know if our, “How are you?” really means we want to know or are just making small talk, giving them a bigger window will help.

    Good luck with your 3 year old! Blessings to your family and you!

  30. This is another example of God at work. This is so timely for me. For so long, I have been the one that was there for everyone else but bottled myself and my feelings up with a simple “Fine” or “I’m good, How are you?” Recently it has gotten to the point that when I work up the courage to share the real me and I reach out, I have been shot down because the person(s) will start sharing their issues and I end up feeling resentful because I needed someone and I ended up having to be there for the other person. FINE has definitely come to mean Frazzled, Irritated, Neurotic, and Exhausted for me. I definitely needed the reminder that God is working his grace and strength in my weakness. I just need to get out of my own way so that God can do his work.

  31. @ Nancy -It is Very Difficult when life situations are beyond our expectations or control. Particularly when we try so.hard. to do everything right. Take care of everyone properly. Expecting the best, because we’ve invested the best we knew how into other peoples lives., and sometimes, we want better for them than they want for themselves.
    Let go ….. and breathe….xoxo

  32. So many times in leadership, we feel the need to put on this “happy face,” and always make those around think that all is peachy in our world. My husband is Superintendent over 50 pastors in our church, and just this past Sunday we were privileged to sit with one of our pastors and his precious wife over lunch. When my husband asked what he could better do to serve the pastor, the door opened for these precious people to open their hearts and pour it out. As we listened, so much of their story sounded familiar. We shared that with them. As we left this couple that day, they thanked us with tears for allowing them to share with us, and for our allowing them to see they were not the only ones in ministry who had ever experienced those feelings.
    WOW! There is a world of hurting ministers/spouses just waiting for somebody to be REAL with them. God help me to be REAL!
    Thank you so very much! You are an overwhelming blessing to me!

  33. I have reached a point where when someone asks, I say “fine” because I know they don’t really mean it. I have been hurt too many times when I did open up so I just lie.

  34. Hi Renee – My mom was died unexpectedly three months ago, and I am not doing fine. When people ask me I say OK, so that I’m getting across that I am doing as best I can, but not great. Actually, I am in the verge of tears all the time , but don’t want to sound like I am complaining. Sometimes, I have to walk away when people ask me what’s happening.

    I am currently flying every two weeks to be with my dad. I love him so much,and watching him struggle and suffer is more than I can bear. I am strong for him while there, but fall apart while home. I am not sure how long I will keep doing this – until he feels he can be by himself, or until he decides to move closer. I feel selfish for wanting my life back – mostly, though, J just want my mom.

  35. Renee, thank you for your transparency on this post as well. I think you’ve hit on one of the biggest problems in Christendom today. We Christians put on masks and learn to “do church” and make everything look just peachy, when it’s not. So we have no authentic relationships, no one to stand beside us in hard times, and no one to talk to… just because we want to maintain appearances. It’s sad, and I hate it. What happened to bearing one another’s burdens? Thanks for breaking the mold. 🙂 I pray Papa will touch your daughter with His healing hand, and will comfort your family through this time.

  36. I grew up the “perfect daughter”, never getting in trouble, always doing what was expected. It just became a habit (bad habit) that I’m “FINE”. Thanks for the encouragement to share. Our pastor has often preached that we need to take off our masks and be real with everyone or we can’t share Jesus!!

    God Bless,
    Carole

  37. When growing up my family and friends felt I was the strongest person. I could deal with anything throw at me. When I had a weak moment because of issue going on in my family, I had a melt down. Even when they asked and I explained it seemed not to matter. When you are expected to be the strong one, you act like the strong one. So my guard is up until I know the person better. Then I open up. I know that is not the best.
    When I came to know the Lord I talked to Him about all things after I got to know Him better.
    I have always work with the public and learned that they want someone to always be smiling and caring. So the guard is always up wondering when they as if they really want to know.
    I know that my environment make me keep my guard up and question whether they really want to know or not.

  38. oh, it is soooooo hard to be honest wtih people – i’m so afraid of “dragging them down” or making them feel uncomfortable! But what a blessing it is to be weak, and admit it to those who need to hear that I’m struggling. It is the shared pain that God uses to glue us together and strengthen us. it’s just so messy to let the glue flow, isn’t it?
    And God always amazes me with who he puts in my path…seems they are going through the same struggle I am! Viola! I need to remember this is for God’s glory.
    And I loved your acronym for FINE! I’m using that one.
    Thank you so much!

  39. I’m sorry to read about your son, but i understand. last summer my15 year old daughter was hurt, kicked in the head at cheer practice, it wasn’t the first time, and she lost her long and short term memory. she forgot who she was, who her family was, how to read, do math and most of all she forgot who her Lord was. We worked hard with her school and doctors getting her some school credit her freshman year with easy Bible and Art classes and one on one with a teacher. Her doctors are now concerned of her having dementia by the time she’s thirty. Its been just one year since her accident July 1st and this past year I’ve been brave, but its wearing on my heart and when i think back i get weepy and know it was God and His strength that got me through. but now its another year and more working with the school and were praying that she’s able to somehow graduate in three years and some how live out the rest of her life full. so how am i really…? a mom like you thats leaning on Jesus to teach our children to take Him at His Word that He will Never Leave nor Forsake them in this hard to fit into world.

  40. I am not fine. My folks are adjusting to a new home in a retirement community. They are believers in a very basic way. I retired early in order to take care of them. My behind the scenes personality is daily faced with phone calls about incorrect bills, visits with the community seniors about the death of one of the “ground floor” guys, conversations with my once strong dad about his fears, reminders to my mom that certain things have already happened followed by tears that my mom does remember her memory is slowly fading. And my dog is dying. I’m not fine. But, God is good. Little things like this, an opportunity to let it all out helps. Thanks for that. I will soon be in the place where I will be able to see that I was fine all along because God loves me.

  41. I too am “not fine” and I am tired of saying I am. The problem is, most people I know really don’t care. Maybe because they just don’t understand that life is traveling at warp speed and I am about to get thrown off the ride because I just can’t hold on anymore. I desperately need a friend but cannot find one who really wants to hear the messiness of my life.

    • Becky, I wrote my own comment before reading yours. I hear what you are saying loud and clear. I am so very sorry you feel this way, and I believe you hit on something that is a major problem for all of us…life is traveling at warp speed. It is sadly so true…there’s not much time for people to sit down at the kitchen table and talk over a cup of coffee or catch lunch together just to talk.
      I will be praying for God to be very close…close enough for you to seriously feel His presence. But I know you need more.
      I hope you will reach out to somebody…a minister or counselor or doctor. I pray you find the right connection. God bless you, Becky.

  42. ;You had me at the title!

    I’m known for being compassionate and encouraging. It is such a privilege for me to really pay attention and offer prayers and concern.

    But I often feel that nobody really wants to listen to me.
    Rarely in my life, and I am 65 years old, have I had a friend who really, really is interested in sitting down and listening to me. Prayer groups and small group Bible studies have filled that need for me, but not family or friends. Maybe it is my own insecurities that make this the way it is.

    I do recognize that I am always very aware of how blessed I am with the most important thing. A loving husband (who has never been my confidant), a loving family. I feel a bit selfish just wanting to pour out my hurt and pain when I know others are having real troubles.

    Thanks for opening this subject up. I may be on a separate end of the issue, but it is very real to me.

  43. This is a very timely matter for me. In the last few months I faced homelessness twice. Responsibility of being the only living relative of a challenged Brother who is a adult in a child’s mind. Loss of all my income to the IRS (under Obama they are destroying lives) and severe health issues. Now while dealing with all that my car needs repairs and my Brother has to move asap on a fixed income. I find I do not bother to talk about it out of my core group as people cannot have the capacity to care or even be remotely interested. God has definitely stepped away from me and with all my daily terrors I just do not talk about it. Why bother when the majority of people are so self involved. Selfish and we’ll off they do not care about those with problems. Most use our problems as an excuse to gossip and insult us to others. Time has shown me to have zero faith in people.

    • I agree that you can’t have faith in church acquaintances but God sees you always and He will lift you up if you keep trusting in Him.Keep reading scriptures that encourage you like 1Peter 5:6-10 and Isa 41:10. Be an over comer so you can laugh at the devil!

    • Lexie,
      I’m so sorry to hear about your situation. I’m even more sad to hear you say you feel God has stepped away from you, but I am encouraged by the fact that you follow this blog and had the courage to respond. I hope that means *you* have not stepped away from God, and He will show you in His time that he has been and is always with you. Please keep seeking a friend who will treasure you for the good and bad in your life, and God will have the right person/people cross your path when He sees the time is right. Hope and prayers to you.

      • Dear Sara, Thank you but I am under no disillusion that God is having any input in my life. It obvious to me that no “force” is working for my greater good. Yes I believe but in a different way then most. I believe that he lived as a serer and resurrected as such but has zero daily ability in our lives. I think if more people would realize that they would be stronger on their own. If in fact as followers think, he was with me my life would not be what it is. So no I do not believe as followers but I have never followed anyone to a overall belief. I prefer reality. . He never helped my poor Mother throughout her life and he has not helped me. If he was helping things would be quite different and I would not be terrorized by the IRS harassed by a disability company and left without anyone in life to care . Such is reality.

  44. This came in at the right time for me. In the Last few weeks, I’ve been worrying about how am I going to pay off my tuition?God says I will provide for you, but during then as I started to doubt;God showed me that he is always there and now my financial aid is $8535.32, I still need to pay half off it and I truly down know where its coming from because I need it before August to return to Southeastern university to pursuit my career in Practical theology. God , I need your help to provide for me ; not just now and to intervene in my mom, sister(MaryAnn), brother(Lamar) life. Amen!!!

  45. Whitney

    Jul 11, 2014

    This came in at the right time for me. In the Last few weeks, I’ve been worrying about how am I going to pay off my tuition?God says I will provide for you, but during then as I started to doubt;God showed me that he is always there and now my financial aid is $8535.32, I still need to pay half off it and I truly don’t know where its coming from because I need it before August to return to Southeastern university to pursuit my career in Practical theology. God , I need your help to provide for me ; not just now and to intervene in my mom, sister(MaryAnn), brother(Lamar) life. Amen!!!

  46. I needed to read this today. I am taking a leap of faith and leaving a destructive marriage. One that I have tried hard to forgive and forget the pass and move forward to save the marriage. I was tired of faking it that I was fine when inside I felt betrayed and rejected by my husband. I literally have hit rock bottom and have reached out to my true friends to tell them I’m not fine and realizing I have to leave this marriage is what’s best for my health. Being honest with my friends and family was a relief as they have all been my rock through this difficult time. That and God I have turned to my bible and all the resources at proverbs 31 and that is helping sustain me. Bless you for the work you do.

  47. Renee
    Thank you for the post…honestly, as I read the passage in Jesus Calling this morning, I believe that I was drawn to your blog. I truly needed to be reminded of the fact that sometimes it’s simply okay to not be “fine”. In the passage this morning, it shared that God does not want us to worship any idols, and that includes money, status and other things that would take our focus away from him. My divorce truly devastated me. I was married and had the “perfect” family for 30 years….well “perfect” on the outside. I always told those that asked that I was “fine”. I know now that had I allowed someone, anyone, to “touch” me, then I wouldn’t have made some of the decisions that I did that I am paying for now. I have been so blessed in that I have had friends that have helped me with my walk. They have also helped me to learn to forgive. I’ve been told that I have a story to tell and a message to share with others that could help them to know that they don’t have to suffer or be ashamed of abuse as well that abuse happens in homes that are of “stature”. Each day I feel that I am closer and closer to being able to help others learn that life won’t end if you say “I need help, I’m not okay”. Thank you for sharing today!
    Renee’

  48. It is so important for us to have a trusted friend we can share our heart with. Someone we know who will walk beside us through our hard times, and pray for us, without condemnation. It truly is a gift to have such a friend or friends! God, of course, is our BIGGEST trusted Friend who we can go to, but it is also good to have a friend here who we can share with. I pray this for all the women above, that God will bring each lady a trusted Christian friend who they can confide in.
    Thanks Renee, for reminding us we all need to be ‘real’…and normal. 🙂

  49. You know what I love? I love how God works in seasons and sometimes he weaves everything together behind the scenes in the most beautiful of ways. I read Lisa’s post here yesterday and yours today and mine will go up tomorrow and all of us writing this week have spoken of our weakness and God’s glorious strength. I love imagining each of us sitting to write the words for this week not knowing what anyone else would write about and this is the theme God chose. He’s most glorified when we admit how much we need him.

    • I thought the same thing yesterday when I read Lisa’s post!! Cant wait to read your’s tomorrow Alia Joy. I love when God speaks so clearly, in ways like He’s doing this week. He’s definitely trying to say something. Leaning in.

      🙂

  50. Being raised in a family where it was important to keep private things private (including my feelings, especially negative feelings) I am still working on being authentic & genuine with my church family. After 50+ years its still hard to let go of that image of having to be “just fine.” My Dad was a pastor when I was growing up and my siblings & I were expected to be “examples” for the other kids in church. Not such a great place to be when you just want to be a kid and do what kids do. That set me up for needing to have everything be “perfect” – an impossible standard that was/still is sometimes my internal bar to reach. Thank you for the reminder that when I strive for my own “perfection” I am not allowing for God to show His perfect self thru my many flaws. It is reassuring to know that others struggle with this as well….we’re not in the fight alone.

  51. God knows I needed to read this. I have always been one who hides when anyone asks me how I am doing for fear of them finding how I really am doing. I rarely ask the question of others because of it being asked of me. It sounds pretty selfish to think that way too. This is something I have never asked God to help me with because I have a lot of trust issues and sometimes wonder if he really is someone I can trust. I keep a lot of burdens to myself and I know his word says to give them to him but again the trust issues come to light. I really don’t know why I feel this way but I just do. It probably stems from being in a family where a lot was kept hidden so we just grew up doing the same thing. My son tells me I should not do that and I wonder if he keeps things from me. I try to be open and honest with him but others outside of our family not much is revealed for fear of judgement. My biggest thing is worrying and his word once again says we are to pray and not worry. Maybe one day I will believe all of this and will believe he answers my prayers and will believe that people really do care when they ask how I am doing and not just say it because they feel they need to. But I am not there yet.

  52. I read the devotion I am glad I did. I believe some of us want to be real among others. But when you tried to open up to some people the next thing you know you am being humiliated. You hear things like – where is your faith, stop speaking negative. You are having a pity party trust God. Say what God says about you. Death and life is in the power of the tongue. ( how are you able to testify “I once was sick or frustrated but now I am well and free”). You feel like you have been humiliated twice. With all these things thrown at you in a rebuking way WHAT DO YOU DO?. We may just smile and say I am fine (may be your acronym for FINE is what we probably mean). When you by yourself you will cry and bawl. Sometimes when you pour out to them you hear it somewhere else. Sometimes you have to pour out your heart before God alone as Psalm 62 says. Very few bring encouragement and identified with the situation. I thank God for that. Another reason is when you try to explain, the situation is far deeper, painful than your explanation. Otherwise it very very difficult for some people to truly open up to others.

    Please pray for me and my child. I AM NOT FINE. I am hurting not with anybody but me. Also pray for my child that evil words will not touch him. I FEEL DEPRESS at this moment but I know that God will help me. He is that kind of God. I love Him and He is my Father, Daddy Papa.

    Thanks again. Be encourage every one.

  53. I just finished reading and praying for those who wrote comments. Many are hurting. Why don’t we each pray for the person whose comment is above and below the one you wrote? God answers prayers. We sweet sisters need to lift each other up. I too lost my mom recently and my heart went out to Debbie who lost her mom recently. I know your pain.
    Delene, email me and i would count it an honor to speak with you and pray for you. As a single mom, I truly understand how difficult life can be when parenting on your own. My email is katjam4233@yahoo.com

    Blessings to each of you. Thanks Renee for this topic today.
    Kathleen K.

  54. Thank you so much for what you wrote today. It really hit home. We’ve been dealing with my husband’s heart issues for so long and waiting for the hospital to call us with a surgery date. At 1 p.m. this afternoon (Friday), they called and said be at the hospital at 6:30 a.m. Monday for the surgery. He is first on the surgery schedule for that day. We’ve been anticipatign this and I am putting on a very strong, “it’s going to be okay” facade for my husband’s sake. But I am not fine; I am stressed, scared, just want to cry. I’m so tired of being strong. I am going to email my prayer group to pray for us on Monday, but I can’t tell you how much your writing meant to me today… just to be able to express how I really feel. Thank you.

  55. This is so good! There was a season where I tried to avoid answering that question at church (which was challenging, since I work at my church and spend a good deal of time there). 🙂 My son has also struggled with apraxia, and there are times that with that situation or others I’m just not “fine”. A wise friend recently taught me another greeting. “It’s good to see you.” No more “How are you doing?” for this girl when I’m on the run and don’t have time to really listen. Listening is super-important, and if I ask “How are you doing?” I want it to mean something – and to have time to listen/ pray/ give hugs/ listen some more if everything is not “fine” with my friend. I don’t want to ask any more meaningless questions of those that may be, as I was, in pain. Thanks for sharing –

    • That is such a great plan B. Im going to copy it 🙂 Praying for you and your boy. The world of Apraxia and special needs parenting is a broken yet {becoming more beautiful} mosaic of dependence and grace like I’ve never known.

    • Yes, Sara! I also started saying, “It’s good to see you!” instead of asking how they are doing. Not only does that not lead to a masked response but it makes the other person feel good!

  56. Renee,

    Thank you for today’s post. It is so true. You feel like you are ready to explode and want someone to share your life frustrations with, but you are afraid to share with people because of what they might think or say. This week was one of those weeks. Thankfully God has provided a dear friend/mentor that I could connect with several times. She allowed me to cry, and vent all that was going on. She also prayed with me and for me through the entire week of struggles. She then also listened some more and gave some godly advice.

    I have learned that there are some people you can really share the true you with and others you keep your guard up. I am so thankful for those God brings my way who will not condemn me for having a terrible, horrible, awful, no good, very bad day. But they come along side and together we trudge through the struggles of life.

  57. Renee-

    Thank you for this post. It really resonated with me. I love your acronym for FINE – how true that can be! And I might resemble the comment about the hormones. That said, I agree it’s often easier to say we’re fine because we don’t want to be viewed as high maintenance. And as a ministry leader, and a blog writer who tries to give encouragement, I wonder if saying how I really feel might make people will look at me as weak in my faith or even hypocritical. I’ve been walking a hard road for about a year now. Many of my friends DO know some of what’s transpired. Some really listen, pray, and email or call to follow up on how I’m doing. They are a real blessing. Others mean well, but make the situation worse. They offer things like “God’s got something better for you!” or “Everything happens for a reason.” Those things may be very true, but in the moment, when my heart is breaking, I don’t want words necessarily. What I need is a hug and perhaps a few words of real truth – “I don’t know why this is happening. I’m not sure why God has allowed this. But I love you, and I’m here to listen.” I know God loves me and listens too, but sometimes, we need someone in the flesh to show us that – to be Jesus at that moment – just like your friend Kelly did for you. Perhaps this touched me so deeply because it confirms the emotions I expressed in a post regarding our need to grieve in the hard places. http://lakesidelessons.blogspot.com/2014/07/permission-to-grieve.html. Blessings to you!

  58. I just love reading about how the God of our Everything works in so many lives, in so many ways. Nothing could be more refreshing today. It’s been a long hard 3 1/2 years. None of the plans that my precious husband and I made for our retirement years has come to pass. We’ve had illnesses, falls, hospital and rehab stays, but at the end of the day, we have each other and The Lord has blessed us with the ability to cope with and adjust to new plans for our retirement. I wish I could say that I do everything right and am the perfect,me on complaining caregiver, but, by the Lord’s grace His mercies are new every morning.

  59. God heard the prayers today…a friend from long ago called me and asked, “how are you?”. She said she felt the need to reach out specifically to me today! God is so good to me and I am humbled to know how much He cares. Thank you for your posting today and for all of you who took the time to open your hearts on this subject. Thank You…..I am so grateful.

  60. I almost always say ” I’m fine,” when in reality it’s the farthest things from the truth. Since my husband committed suicide I am lonely, sad and I have a million questions that will never be answered. When I do mention my husbands passing so many people do not know how to respond. So I get alot of uneasiness on their part, then everyone is feeling uncomfortable. The LORD has brought me a long way, but I still have so far to go. Thank you for letting me comment. God bless.

  61. Sometimes it is so hard to be honest when you are not fine, especially when you feel as though the real you has been unwanted, ridiculed, shamed, mocked and beaten into submission. Most days it is easier to just smile, nod and keep it moving.

  62. Your post…it describes the me I usually am. I’m the first one to offer help and prayer for others, but the last one to ask for those things for myself. But God is teaching me to not only GIVE grace, but to receive it as well.

    These words were a great reminder: “God’s working His grace and His strength in my weakness.”

    Thank you so much for sharing. 🙂

  63. I recently sat next to a gal at church and after the service I asked her (after some small talk) if there was anything she would like for me to pray about. She paused for a few seconds and could not come up with anything. When she asked me the same question, I had a few things I could have said but I did not want her to think the only reason I asked was because I really wanted her to pray for me. Was my question a little too personal for a first time meeting? What do you think?

  64. Im sitting here, reading through the rest of your beautifully honest thoughts and stories. Thank you, each of you, for pulling up a chair and sitting here with me today. I love listening to you, praying for you and taking in all that you share. You have given me much to think and pray about. I had hoped to get to reply to each of you but ran out of time tonight. If I don’t get back to hop back over here tomorrow, I wanted you to know you’ve been such an important part of this conversation. I’ve heard and prayed over every word you shared. 🙂

  65. Hi Renee
    About 6 months ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I have been a leader at our church, always seem the strong one amongst believers. I was the one who people could count on for prayer and encouragement. I would be the one who would serve and wanting to give. Until I got the news! God stripped me of my hidden pride. It was time for my husband and I to ask for help and learn to receive. It was time to humble out and allow our believer friends to love us. AND IT WAS OK TO SAY WHEN I WAS NOT FEELING FINE.
    Thank God that even through our tough circumstances God turned everything for good. He didn’t waste a tear, nor a pain nor a sickness. I thank God that after a few months of treatment the cancer is gone. Praise be to God!

    • Oh my goodness, your story is one we all need to here. Praise God for your cancer being God. And I am so grateful to hear you say, It’s okay to need help, to need prayer, to bow out and be the one who is loved on and served for a season. Especially hard for those who are the “doers” but oh so healthy and needed. Isn’t that the only way we will get to see the full beauty of the BODY of Christ and the family/community of a church?

      Sometimes we strong-willed, independent, I don’t-want-to-be-a-burden women have to come to the end of ourselves before our hearts and hands are open to receive the fullness of all God wants to give us! {Not that I can relate or anything :).}

  66. Good Morning Renee,
    I truly know where you are coming from. My son is 3 1/2 and diagnosed with Apraxia recently. It’s the hardest thing to not be able to understand what your child needs or have people stare at you because your when your child talks you can’t understand a word. GOD has been my rock and os leading us down this path for a reason. Blessings to you and your family during this journey!

    • Blessings and prayers for you and yours Amy!! Do as much speech therapy as you can and you will be amazed by the progress over time. It’s been three and a half years now and she can say sentences now. I can’t always understand the whole sentence but I can usually understand enough to know what she is trying to say. And that feels like a miracle compared to where we were. 🙂 Sending hugs and prayers your ways tonight. I pray you can feel His grace and strength around you!!

  67. This is so honest. You feel like you need to keep it all in,to be strong but as life goes on,life just gets heavier for some and to share it is troublesome. Who really cares everyone has a issue and we just keep on keeping on the best way we know how. There are times that’s all you can do. then here comes this amazing Grace thing.

  68. Thanks for your wonderful devotions. While I don’t have really serious problems, I have a multitude of ailments…asthma,sleep apnea, allergies to many things in my environment, arthritis all over my body with problems of my back, hip, knees and my feet. My BP is rising as is my weight. I have two dr. appointments Monday. I still feel blessed. Sunday I will lead the adult Sunday School class, I will give a Children’s Message during the service. I will arrive early and set up breakfast for 35-45 people. Then, after church I will help clean up, come home and lie down so my poor, painful feet won’t continue to swell. Your post brings the joy and hope of our Lord into so many lives. Your first person accounts bring God’s Word more fully into our lives. The parables of Jesus did the same thing. May God continue to bless you….and I pray that He helps you with your problems, too.

    • Thank you for sharing your heart, your struggles and your joyful perspective Evelyn. You obviously have a big servants heart. I am praying for His strength and comfort to be yours and for the ways you pour into others lives to balance out with the ways YOU let Him pour into yours with times of rest, soaking up His presence and just letting Him love you too!!

      Your note was such an encouragement tonight :).

  69. I tell everybody I’m OK .. but that’s so no one will feel bad for be .. I have day a ruff life .. but God has got me through all of it .. some days I sit around and cry for no reason but most of the time I act like I’m in a good mood just so no one knows .. I cut up I tell funny jokes .. but at the end of the night I brake down .. I lay in my bed and I cry so hard I talk to God then I fall asleep after or in the middle of my conversation with him .. I wake the next morning and talk to him .. then I get my day started .. I feel as if I talk to anybody else I am putting my burdens on men and I cannot do that .. as if I can’t handle my own so why should I tell them so they can say poor Christy .. every time I feel like life is no worth it I cry out to god .. and never in almost 41 years has he let me down .. yes I have let him down every day .. but not once has he .. I am a special case here .. cause I have tried many time to end what was left of me .. I have tried to cut out what was bad in me and yet I have failed every time .. so I thank God everyday that I’m here I don’t know why I am but god knows and he is with me every step of the way .. God has saved me more time than I can count .. for my own self .. all the drinking the pills and the cutting .. I Christy stand here right now .. not because of my self but because of God .. he is my life light my everything .. who or what would I be without him .. he is my father my mother and sometimes my husband but most of all he is my God my lord and saver and I .. yes I Christy and truly blessed to have a farther who has never turned his back to me never once left me never one beat me nor did anything nasty to me .. I have the true farther .. the one who gave me life and now I shall live me life the best I can .. and I owe it all to him ..

    • Christy,

      Please feel free to tell a close friend how you are doing. You may be surprised to find that people want to pray for you and truly care how you are! You are not burdening us with your troubles. God wants us to share our burdens so each can pray for the other!

      Father God,

      Please send Christy a good super close friend who she can confide in. Give her the peace to talk to someone and know that they will pray and be there for her. Let her know that she is loved by all and we care for her more than she knows!

      AMEN!

  70. We talked about this at Bible study once. Most people in church put on a good face. I don’t like that. If I ask how you are–tell me. Be real, honest, open. I want to share in your burdens and pain. It helps me to realize that I’m not the only one going through stuff.

    I have a few really good friends who I can email, text or call and ask for prayers or just be me with. I can open up and tell them everything. They will pray for me and be there for me. In return I will do the same for them!

    Please women open up and quit using “FINE”! Let us know how you are doing good, bad or ugly! Everyone is going through something at some point in life and we can all be there for them!

  71. I have found it difficult over so many years as a pastor’s wife to say much else besides “fine” except to those very few that I know I can trust.

  72. Thank you Renee for sharing and opening up this discussion. Thanks for sharing everyone. I appreciate the sharing because I can relate and felt alone in my feelings. I can relate to Renee’s definition of FINE, that exactly how I feel at times. In trying to keep ourselves together the real us gets lost. Many ask: I want to be transparent but to who? Again thanks for this space to share.

  73. Hi. It’s been a long time since I have been fine. Fighting depression and some days just feel like giving up. People think I am crazy as it is. Family offers no support. I just need to find my way back to the Lord which used to give me peace. Thank you.

  74. I am not fine. But my husband so much needs me to be. Otherwise, I would just fall down on the floor with grief. Don’t care if I get back up. What do you do. And, I have no idea how to find your responses should anyone be able to help me. I am so very tired. I try. I really do. God bless all of you.

  75. My Sweet Sister Vicki,

    I am praying for you today. I have had seasons of life where this is true of me, but as the Lord has lead me to see your comment KNOW that you are not alone. That the thoughts or circumstances that weigh you down are temporary. Your creator longs to dwell in you and revive you. God is in the business of restoration. It’s His beautiful plan. Eph. 2:22 In him you too are being built together to become a dwelling which God lives by his Spirit.

    God wants to dwell with you girl! He is wildly after your heart and will remove large hurdles of sin or resistance out because he adores you. He has created you because he has a plan for you. Psalms 3:8 From the Lord comes deliverance. May your blessing be on your people.

    It’s ok to fall down on the floor and cry out to God. He is with you and will be the one to rise you back up, once he has removed whatever needs to be removed. Psalm 34:17 The righteous cry our and the Lord hears them.

    It is by Christ sacrifice on the cross that we can be righteous when we ask for the forgiveness of our sin.

    Psalm 34 continued…He delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

    I can testify this is true 7 weeks and three days ago my husband buried our infant son next to my daughter who was put to rest 7 years ago. What I have written to you today has been what the Lord is teaching me. He, our sovereign Lord, is preparing a dwelling place in our hearts. The Lord told David when he wanted to build a temple for God. Why do i need a house of cedar? Hasn’t my dwelling always been with my people since i brought them out of Egypt. It was a simple tent. We are but simple tents. Dive in the Word Vicki with your face on the floor and God will met you there.

    With love,
    Amie

  76. Hi Renee. I’m really not fine at all. I’ve been living that pretend life in front of people a couple of yrs. But today is the day I start divorce processes. From my spouse who has abused me physically, sexually, emotionally, and spiritually…. and to top it off…. he’s a minister. I can’t live this life. I’m not really living. I’m afraid for my life at times. I’m existing day to day. I’m never happy. I’ve lost me! I’m so worried that his congregation who loves him will see me as a horrible person. They don’t live in my life. I know I always have God’s embrace. That gets me thru my days.

  77. Hi Renee… thank you for this post. I’m not fine either. My mom unexpectedly passed away two months ago and I thought I had it all together but I really don’t. I feel disconnected from my faith (at times) and I feel like some people expect me to be alright. I’ve even talked to a few of my friends who all pretty much told me to talk to someone else. It’s hard to be real when people ask, I try to be, and there isn’t anyone to help me unpack my bags so I can take a load off. How’s a girl to function?!

  78. Just see want to know where does the Swope come in? Would like yo claim you as family

  79. I am not doing fine.. I am struggling with anorexia/bulimia and every day is awful. I’m trying to recover but i am never good enough and I just want to give up.