About the Author

Kristen Strong, author of Back Roads to Belonging and Girl Meets Change, writes as a friend offering meaningful encouragement for each season of life so you can see it with hope instead of worry. She and her US Air Force veteran husband, David, have three children and live in Colorado...

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things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. I love the illustration of our hearts being like the old testament tabernacle. Wonderful words to remember this morning. Thanks for sharin the words God lays on your heart.

  2. Kristen,
    This is so me, sometimes. I take words that aren’t really meant for me to heart. The enemy stands at the door to my heart and tries to weasel and connive his way in. He know that once he gets a foot in the door it won’t be long until he’s all the way in. When I sense “red flags” like are these words/thoughts making me anxious, are they condemning, are they tearing me down vs. building me up, then chances are they are words I need to pivot away from and slam the door on in order to safeguard my holy of holies. Wise words here Kristen and, as always, a much needed reminder!
    Advent blessings to you friend,
    Bev xx

  3. I love the whole story,and how true it is. I only wish I had heard this year’s ago!! Thank you for sharing. And may the Lord Bless you.

  4. Trusting for wisdom to know when to pivot and when to enter into the deeply humbling process of growth through the (uncomfortable) insights of others.
    Hope that elbow is not hampering your Christmas celebration!

  5. I too, love your analogy of the temple. I know this will become a reminder someday. Considering the source gets trickier as I somehow can’t get my filter in place quickly enough. You given me a way of focusing.

  6. I love your comparison of our hearts with a tabernacle. That is a great illustration. I often wonder why it can be so difficult to give kind words any space in our hearts, but we readily accept cruel words and allow them to shape our thoughts and beliefs about ourselves.

    Side note: I hope your elbow is doing well. I can relate. About six years ago, I slipped on the ice and crushed my elbow. The surgeon told me it was broken into seventeen pieces. He didn’t expect me to regain full range of motion. But our God is the Great Physician. My elbow is good as new. Hope yours is, too.

    • Oh my GOODNESS Carol, broken in seventeen pieces?! Incredible. And wow, how painful. What a road you must have traveled toward healing. Thank God! And you give me hope for mine to regain full range of motion too!

      So much love to you, Carol. xoxo

  7. This is so wise and so needed!! I love the thought of pivoting away. We so often allow other people’s words or actions to tear us down. You are so right, if they are not a trusted part of our “inner court” we should just pivot! Love this!

  8. This WAS me. I am learning to stand firmly on what God says about me. It’s an amazing place. Trusting in God’s love for me, my family and for all of His awesome creation. I am expecting God at every turn. We all have the power of Jesus finished work – NO CONDEMNATION! EVER!

  9. Kirsten,
    I’m sorry about your elbow, and hope it mends well. Your husband sounds like he’s a blessing to you.Thank-you for kindly sharing your words, and of truth with us. I appreciate your friend’s sound advice.

    I hope you, and your family have a joyful, blessed Christmas,

    All the best,

  10. Amen! Thank you.
    I recently heard a description of the Father’s voice being:
    Affirming, Inviting, Defending.
    It gives AID.

  11. So perfect. Thank you for your spirit led insight.
    The enemy uses our past wounds of agreements to steal our joy. Words, not meant for our hearts are spoken to severely separate us from God. I take these hard words and ask God to interpret them for me. I take these words captive and compare to His word. I then recieve clarity on whether I am to look in that mirror or pivot!!!!
    Keep speaking truth I love your insights!

  12. Well, aren’t we on the same page, I’m about to start studying wisdom again. Pivoting is wisdom, no doubt. the devil is always on instant replay or the loop, so we’d better interrupt him. But even better is the mercy seat of our heart, where Jesus resides, the secret place, the holy of holies. I just wrote about the same thing. His blood is on it, He was the propitiation, which actually means mercy seat. He took our punishment and place, and by His wounds we are healed. Praying restoration for your arm and shoulder, healing in Jesus name.

  13. Wow I’ve never visioned it this way before. Thank you for helping us frame it in God’s perspective! I’ve taken many remarks to heart over the years, and didn’t realize I could do something else…I’m going to ask God to help me with this. 🙂

  14. Kristen,

    The Bible has a lot to say about this. Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
    —Ephesians 4:29

    Hearing ugly words makes me cringe and feel awful about myself. I take those words to heart and tend to believe them. The devil knows how and when to hit me. I must learn to pivot and not hear those words & let them sink to far into my psyche!

    Blessings 🙂

  15. Some places are just for you and God alone, a holy of holies. – That sheds a whole new light on my prayer and listening. Wow – what a gift – thank you!