About the Author

Alia Joy is an author who believes the darkness is illuminated when we grasp each other's hand and walk into the night together. She writes poignantly about her life with bipolar disorder as well as grief, faith, marriage, poverty, race, embodiment, and keeping fluent in the language of hope in...

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing Paul’s words as a Scriptural rebuke to our feelings of inadequacy and failed-before-I’ve-even-begun reluctance. I like to remind myself that Paul boasted in his pitiful neediness and in the grace of God, reminding his readers that his strength was not made perfect in his great pedigree or his amazing command of Greek, but in his weakness.

    Thank you, Lord, for Alia’s anointed words. Carry her through this process of bringing her book into being, keep her strong and healthy for the work of it all, and bless the outcome with a warm welcome and great success.

    • Oh yes, failed before I’ve even begun. I’ve been so convicted of my view of God lately. I believed I had worked through so much of that and then as this book moved further along, I’ve realized how prone I am to bury my talents in the ground for fear of failure or loss or a hard master. I think I’m being reasonable and humble but really it’s operating out of scarcity and a view of God that isn’t willing to risk making a fool of myself and risking it all.

  2. I needed to read this, this morning. I sat this morning finishing up preparing the Sunday School lesson and I was feeling tired and broken after a long tasking weekend of constant go and worrisome events. I was questioning whether I should be the one teaching these lessons, or if I should ask if someone could take over. And your words filled my heart with hope and my eyes with tears. Thank you.

  3. Alia,
    I am so excited for your book….why? Because you write so beautifully from the broken place where many…no all of us reside. Like you, I feel like my brokenness stands out a little more because the thorn in my side is living a lifetime with an anxiety disorder and depression. God’s grace truly can be a kind psychiatrist who doesn’t look at you like you are a cyclops. That thorn keeps me utterly relying and depending upon God. That’s precisely what I see in you and your writing and your life arrow doesn’t point to Alia Joy; it points to the One who is our strength in our weakness. I’d rather read your writing, that is raw and real, than the advice of a supposed “expert” who speaks from a place of seemingly having their whole act together. Thanks for keeping it real. Write on!!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Thanks Bev. Ooof, that dependance. It’s such a hard thing and yet there is no other life we’re called to. And yes, God’s grace and his strength showing up for me has looked like a thousand different things along the way. It doesn’t look like healing the way we’d sometimes imagine it, but it does look like presence and hope.

  4. I too needed these words for I am facing doing a ministry I love but am too weak at times to do. Lord, I join in thanking you for the very weakness I would love to remove. I know that in my weakness You are glorified. Be with Alia and help her mind to focus on the work and on you and not on the waves. Amen.

  5. I am crying here, absolutely adoring your words this morning as this is exactly how I feel! Unqualified, not strong enough and why me but it’s his grace, his strength, his purpose for his glory. He qualifies us both dear sister. He gave you the words I needed to hear. Thank you for the courage to write them and allowing God to use you in this mighty way. You have been a huge blessing to me today!

  6. Alia,
    This is a very profound message you shared with us this morning. We all have our thorns and often feel vulnerable and “unqualified.” From a very deep rawness you courageously share a message of hope and encouragement that Jesus meets us right there. I am so excited for your book. If your words here meet so many of us in our places, imagine what a blessing your book will be. Thank you, sister! Many blessings to you.

    • Thanks so much for your encouragement, Karen. I truly appreciate it and that’s my hope for the book. That people would come to know the goodness of God and the beauty of His strength in our weakness.

  7. Thank you for sharing these words of encouragement. My life is sweet but there are times when I feel very unworthy of receiving love and forgiveness. Your words remind me to BELIEVE. Please continue your writing.

    • Yes, we all have those areas of doubting we’re worthy of love and forgiveness. We all need those reminders of grace from time to time.

  8. Beautiful testimony Alia,
    to His abiding presence, His all sufficiency, His beauty making out of ashes …
    and His ‘Everlasting love’.
    Thank you !

  9. Sweet Alia, I always look for your posts and am looking forward to your book and the way God will work in hearts because of your faith, your labor of love in this book. Write on, indeed! I come from a very broken family and difficult childhood so I am constantly trying to “prove” my worth. Again and again and again, the cycle repeats: Hold the Truth, Know the Truth, begin to live in Truth…but slowly creeps in the “need” to “prove” the Truth, flurries and hurries of “good works” then exhaustion, depression, doubt. Ah.
    On a side note, as a girl who “collected words” you may enjoy Peter Reynolds children’s book The Word Collector. The message in the book is a good one for you as you finish your manuscript. You are “giving your words” to the world. Thank you, thank you.

    • Oh thank you so much, Paula. I’m honored you take the time to look for them and read them. I so appreciate that. And that cycle is so vicious and yet it’s so freeing to remember we can’t add one thing to what’s been done on our behalf by a loving and merciful God. And I will check that book out, thank you!

  10. Alia,
    My heart just resonated with these words and your heart. God loves a contrite heart, an honest declaration. Your transparency gives strength and hope for me who suffer with mental deficiencies, medications and no formal experience in forging words, yet I know the voice of the Holy Spirit and His call. I well know the voices of distraction, defeat and discouragement also. You are futher than me, you are working on your book. I don’t know if that is in my future. Yes, we are saved and being saved every moment by
    His grace and lovingkindness. My prayers go up to heaven for you as you continue in His strength.

    • Yes, we are being saved and we are saved. I’m glad you got some encouragement for your journey with writing and telling your story whether it’ll be in a book or some other thing, we are all called to bear witness to the grace and goodness of God in our lives.

  11. Beautiful writing on a dark path few of us have to take on the way home. Thanks for sharing about the thorns we carry … and reminding me that God still (and always!) uses my rapid- cycling, crazy brain in amazing ways!

  12. “I count myself among the foolishness of God, the ridiculousness of the Cross. The message of Christ crucified is a stumbling block because I have done nothing to earn his tender mercy.” Wow!! I love this. So positively true.
    You have a gift ,no matter how hard it is to wield sometimes , it’s important. Press on-You’re gifts are being multiplied.

  13. I always look forward to your posts, thanks for sharing and the reminder that God is working in us moment by moment, day after day, and we can be confident in that promise and not be hard on ourselves as we are “practicing” to be more like Him and don’t always get it right, but have each new day ahead to enter with confidence.

  14. Alia,
    This has been a blessed reading gift to me and several others from comments before mine. I pray that God will continue to renew and restore His Grace and Power upon you every moment. Continue to look into Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith. Like Paul said, “God’s grace is sufficient for you and His Power works best in our weaknesses.” That you’re honouring God by your obedience, He will sustain and enable you to complete the good work He started in you. God bless you abundantly and remain strong in the Lord! You’re an inspiration to all of us who are broken but have been restored by His marvellous Grace. Thanks for sharing.

  15. sometimes I feel so discouraged but feel better after reading your email. I know God is there but sometimes I feel that I am alone and have alot of self pity I guess I have to be more confident in God’s love and presence in all of our lives

    • Discouragement is part of our nature. We are prone to doubt, prone to wander, prone to lose sight of the promises we have and the grace we know. To feel alone. And in that loneliness to sometimes wonder if God is really enough. I feel that too sometimes. I think we must be people who learn to hope, who learn to trust in the God we cannot always see. Isn’t this faith? Not that we would always get it all right but that we would continue to reach our hands toward Christ and that we would ask for Him to help us believe. To remind us again and again when we forget. He does, he will. He is faithful to meet us, no matter how discouraging and painful life can be sometimes. Saying a prayer for you tonight. That he would meet you right where you’re at.

  16. Alia,

    Praying for the strength to finish your book. Your writing is spot on in our lives today. Each of us has a thorn in our flesh. God won’t take it away lest we boast in our strength. I’ve had to depend on God a lot lately. Only He could heal my aging dad & see me through those trials. Often times I feel unqualified for the job. I know deep down that God doesn’t call the qualified-NO He qualifies the called. Those He wants to do His work-He will give them the strength & ability. Share your words with the world & you will be blessed by God.

    Blessings 🙂

  17. This is so beautiful, Alia. And so so encouraging to me right now, as I walk through PTSD. Thank you for encouraging us all. That book will be a blessing. May God pour out His anointing upon it to give renewed hope and faith to His people.

  18. I will read your book and buy a copy for family members who would love it, so write on. Don’t stop writing!

  19. I can’t begin to tell you how much your words mean to me! I’m so looking forward to your book. I too have felt unqualified, but the Lord has reminded me that He used unschooled fishermen to do the greatest work of His kingdom. He is using you greatly too, Alia.

    • Right? There are so many reminders in scripture and even in my own life. God has set this path before me and opened doors I would never have imagined. I know that all God wants is my faithfulness and obedience in this and when I panic and worry about the results, I’m reminded that those things don’t matter the way I sometimes feel they do. God is so good at reminding me why I write, why I tell my story, why in the end, it’s about Him.

  20. I just love this..”I count myself among the foolishness of God, the ridiculousness of the Cross.” That’s good stuff. Any and all glory to God alone!

  21. My husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease about two weeks ago. Sometimes he’s fine with no symptoms and other times, he’s agitated and delusional. I feel so inadequate in caring for him. We’ll be married 50 years in September. I’m so afraid of letting him down. I pray constantly for strength, patience and for the presence of my LORD. Thank you for this devotional. It really spoke to me.

    • Oh Barbara, this is such hard stuff. My grandmother had Alzheimer’s disease and she lived with us while my mom cared for her. It’s such a painful disease in so many ways, my heart breaks for you. Praying for you tonight and for your dear husband. May God be near and bring you comfort, strength, and patience, and also for you to have grace for yourself as you walk this hard road.

  22. Alia as always your words weave a beautiful message I resonate with in many ways. They are the kind words that are like honey to my soul. To be reminded that I am not the only one who walks with a thorn… to be reminded that the thorn does not disqualify me and makes no sense at times to the outside world… it is what draws me near to Jesus and where I meet Him. Your words are a gift. They are a way Jesus comes to me. Thank you friend.

    (Also especially loved this: “It is enough to walk in the garden barefoot and unashamed when the throne remain.” Amen).

  23. Thank you for your words of truth to encourage us!

    I, too, have been given a story to share. Mine came first as a children’s book, and has continued with a weekly article for a school newsletter, and now a website/ blog. It’s one of the scariest but most fulfilling adventures ever.

    As a result (partially) of my insecurities to put myself “out there” for scrutiny, I self-published the children’s book. I know it was a gift from Him just to be able to write it, and I am content to share it as I have opportunity. As He continues to build my confidence I take more steps.

    We are never alone!

    Thank you,
    Becky