About the Author

Candace is a wife, mom, Jesus follower, serenity seeker, and writer sharing her messy life to encourage others.

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  1. I have a frame on my kitchen window sill that my friend gave me years ago… it says “Friends are God’s way of taking care of us.” I believe that 100%,

    I’m so glad you found a new healthy community of friends who can support you and bless you and walk with you through this new season of your life!

    It’s amazing to me, how God provides these friends at particular turns in our lives. I don’t know if I could have survived so many hard places in my life without them…

    • I love that framed quote you shared, Chris! What a wonderful gift from your friend. He really does take care of us by bringing exactly who we need at the perfect time.
      I’m thankful to have you in this beautiful online community, my friend!

  2. This is exactly what I’ve been praying about recently. I am an introvert and I have entered a new phase in life, which for me is wonderful. My boys are in college here in town (I am a single mom), so they are still living at home, but they are busy and nearly independent. Which means lots of peace and quiet at home! I love it. But, the Lord is pushing me to get out of my comfort zone and get connected with people (shudder), and with a women’s Bible study group.

    • I completely understand the “shudder” part, Michelle! My first step was starting in an online Bible study through Proverbs 31 ministries. It helped tremendously! I’ve been doing those for almost 2 years now. They are free and it is a very loving community. You may want to check out their website.
      We are finishing up the current study in the next couple of weeks. I’m not sure when the next one starts or if we are taking the summer off. I would love to see you there. They also have Facebook groups that you can join to go deeper in the study and connect more. Many of my Facebook group members are now friends I travel to Christian conferences with as well. It has been an incredible and rewarding journey!
      It sounds like you are in an exciting new phase of life. I’m so thankful to connect with you today.

  3. Oh Candace, I am so thrilled to see you here at {in}courage, sharing your heart so bravely and wisely. This is a powerful piece that’s sure to touch hearts wounded by that Daddy-shaped hole that was left untended.

    I love what God is doing in your life, and feel so blessed that our paths cross so frequently. You encourage my soul.

    • I’m so honored to be here, Linda. It’s a beautiful community. I certainly hope this will reach many who have struggled with that sad, deep hole so many of us are left with.
      You encourage me as well and I’m incredibly blessed to call you my friend!

  4. So glad I’ve gotten to know you on this big ‘ole internet. Your encouragement makes a difference and I’m always glad to cross paths with you. I’m excited to read more of your story here, Candace! Thanks for sharing yourself!

    • I’m truly thankful we have connected as well, Kristin. I never imagined feeling so close to people I’ve never had an opportunity to meet in person. It’s a beautiful gift. Thanks so much for visiting me here!

  5. i am so glad that I met you through our online blogging. You have a gift with writing and have been a true friend via cyberspace. I was blessed with a couple of good friends in elementary school/junior high that are still good friends even though we don’t talk often. Besides that I have my mom and sisters and one other good friend and then a bunch of people from church that would help if needed. At my stage of life, it is all the time I have–friends take time; which is fine, but my kids take most of my time.

    • You really are in that stage where kids take so much time, Tammy. I get it. I’m quickly leaving that stage. As you know, my daughter has moved out and my son is a teenager, so I finally have time to nourish some friendships.
      It’s great you still have friends from those early years. I moved around as I got older and lost touch with many people. We still talk on Facebook occasionally, but I miss seeing them.
      I’m blessed to have you in my life, my friend!

  6. Candace, this is just beautiful and I feel blessed to call you my friend. Reading this makes me more determined to make more time to get together with you! I love you my friend!

  7. Oh wonderful to see you sharing here today, Candace. And a post I could relate to very much as I’m quite the introvert too. I have discovered though that I do love one-on-one time with other women. It’s the big groups that tend to scare me most. Even there, though, God is teaching me that He goes before me and that I do not need to be afraid to follow.
    So blessed to do community with you in this online world.
    xoxo

    • I’m so blessed to have you in my community as well, Beth. I can completely relate to the difficulties with big groups. We used to be in a huge life group with our church. I found I couldn’t even speak in it. When we switched to a smaller group, I’ve been able to open up and share more, although it still makes me a little nervous. Like you, I’m learning to rely on God in those moments. XO

    • Beth,
      I totally agree about big groups of people all at once. I don’t care for small talk or a lot of noise. I more prefer the small more intimate groups where you can really get to know someone.
      Blessings 🙂

  8. So true Candace. We do need friends. It is hard sometimes to make time to let them in, but we do need God’s blessings that quite often come from true, loving and caring friends.

    • Time is such a precious commodity to us mommies, Jen. I really think that is one of the biggest obstacles as we get older. When we are young, all of our time is spent nurturing friendships. You are absolutely right though, God’s blessings can so often come through them. We must try to let them in.

  9. What a beautiful post! We are made for community, and I love that quote from Mother Teresa.

    • Thank you, Akaleistar! It has taken me years to learn the importance of community. I spent many depressed years alone, refusing to reach out. Those days are hopefully behind me. That’s one of my favorite quotes from Mother Teresa. She was a very wise woman!

  10. How beautiful and perfect! Gosh, the walls we build to keep people, pain, and problems out. You spoke the truth sis: the walls suffocate us from the relational intimacy we’re created for. I can definitely identify with the expectation of abandonment due to a non-existent or unpresent father. It hurts so bad. And with new relationships, that wound throbs with pain reminding us of that false core belief that inevitably, people will leave because we are so leavable. What a journey to learn to live beyond that. What courage you have through the Spirit of Christ! May you find solace in knowing your journey has been charted by the hands of the Savior-and He is good.

    • Those walls really do suffocate us. What a perfect description! May you find that solace in Christ as well. He can heal all of those painful wounds of the past in order to thrive in relationships today.

  11. I am so proud of you! I can see how you’ve grown, and I can relate to so much of your struggles with this! I’m blessed to call you friend, and can’t wait to read more of your blog! Love you!

    • I’m so blessed to call you friend as well. I love you dearly, Veronica. Thank you for our beautiful blossoming friendship that is truly helping break down my walls!

  12. What a beautiful post on friendships. I have been blessed by so many beautiful women in my life, both IRL and on line. I cannot imagine my life without any of them. Thankful to have connected with you through blogging and praying our on line connection will continue to grow.

    • Thank you, Barbie! Friends are such an incredible blessing. It’s taken me a long time to realize this instead of seeing them as painful and stressful. I’m so looking forward to our growing connection as well!

  13. I love this, Susan: commUNITY! I’ve never looked at it like that. A new perspective can be so eye-opening. Thanks for the linkup invite! I’ll put it in my calendar.

    • Yea! Yes a simple shift can change the view -radically! So glad you will join the dance Candace.

  14. Candace-

    I wrote about being afraid of friendship a couple of years ago now and your words just gave that bit of deja-vu needed to remind me not to keep building up walls. Thank you for sharing this honest struggle -most of us wouldn’t admit it but I know that I least wrestle with this too. Praise to the One who is our friend and provides all that we need -even community and relationships! Love from a #RaRaLinkup sister!

    • Those walls seem to build up so easily, but tearing them down is a much bigger struggle. Community is incredibly beautiful and difficult at the same time. You are so right though, Bethany, He provides exactly who we need.

  15. Candace,
    So thankful for your honesty and openness. Being an introvert is hard. My hubby and I are both introverts, although he more than me. I find quite often that I need good friends to do life with. I enjoy eating lunch daily with 2 co workers and talking over life. This weekend one friend is coming with me on a women’s retreat. She has been going through some hard stuff and needs a break.
    I am awed at how God knows what we need & who can supply those needs. I have a good covenant friend & we share everything. We talk about 4-6 times a week. We can bear each other’s burdens and enjoy life!
    Blessings 🙂

    • It sounds like you have a great inner circle, Beth. Being an introvert is really difficult at times. I completely agree. My husband is incredibly social, so he makes me get out more than I normally would. I hope you have a wonderful time at your retreat this weekend. I absolutely love those weekends away with friends!

  16. Thank you for sharing your story. Us introverts have the wrong idea about friendships. For many years of my life I’ve honestly no desire for friendships. But The Lord is showing that I am wrong. Thank you for the encouragement that even I may find sisters in Christ.

    God bless!
    Marissa

    • I spent many years the same way, Marissa. I had absolutely no desire for friends. Let the Lord continue to work and He will bring the right people into your life. You definitely have sisters in Christ, including me! It’s so nice to meet you.

  17. What a lovely post. I’m an introvert too but I value good friends and how friendships can help us grow and learn.

    I struggle with connecting. I get uncomfortable, nervous, and anxious about how others perceive me. I force myself to go to events so I can make a new Christian friend or two and I still haven’t been able to connect. While at Bible studies, etc. I think I’m connecting but when I email or try to contact someone, I get crickets. I have a sense this isn’t by accident. The Lord will place who He wants me to connect with at a particular time – I know it.

    Thanks so much for sharing. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one who wrestles with these things and hopefully I find a community like you’ve shared here.

    Blessings to you.
    xoxo

    • Connecting is difficult for me too, Jennifer. My anxiety kicks in high gear at any social event. I really have to force myself to go as well. I can completely relate to you! The Lord will absolutely bring the right people in His perfect timing. I honestly prayed about this for years before I found myself in some communities. I still catch myself retreating into isolation far too often, but I’ve come a long way. I have no doubt you will find your people as well. I’m so glad we have connected and I look forward to getting to know you more.

  18. Hello everyone am looking forward to sharing with you lady. On courage, when Gods present are upon on me. That’s when am more effected! Being in Gods will…….for my life…..and yes I need support be hide me. Thank for allowing me to share.