About the Author

Aarti is a television personality, chef, cookbook author, news + documentary producer, third-culture kid, and chaser of the polyglot palate. She's fascinated by the fact that Jesus knew how to cook and spends way too long imagining what's going to be on the table at the heavenly feast. She's married...

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Reader Interactions


  1. Thank you for you witness!

    I’ve loved you as a chef since I watched you in the contest and even more in this space. As a fellow people pleaser, thank you for the encouragement and perspective for my journey.

  2. I’ll tell you right now..I LOVE to see you on tv any time & would love to be your friend because your smile is always beaming & you are such a positive, happy person! THANK YOU for being the wonderful person God created you to be!

  3. I don’t know who you are but you can bet I will follow you now. All Jesus asks is this, when I come back will I find you faithful. Yes, yes, yes

  4. Wonderful! May we all discern the praise of God as most important! Thank you for sharing! And the visual of the martini glass spilling! …out of the small mustard seed sized base comes forth a much bigger sphere of influence spilling over the rim of our beings. Go God go!

  5. Dear Aarti, As a people pleaser who is trying to reform, I am so grateful for your words this morning. It spoke to me and was like a hug to my soul. Thank you for continuing to share God’s love and inspiring us as well. God Bless.

  6. Thank you for your honesty. It really is hard for me sometimes to acknowledge my beliefs.

  7. Well I don’t normally comment but you struck a cord with me. I love watching you on tv cooking and smiling…. Most recently with Selena Gomez. May God Richly bless you and keep you faithful as you boldly share His love. Praise Jesus for His Spirit that enables you.

  8. Thank you, Aarti, for your brave witness and honesty about something so many of us struggle with: people pleasing. Your words encourage my soul, giving reassurance and peace.

    It is so true that: “The world’s approval is a counterfeit version of His friendship.”

    Following Jesus and caring what He thinks of our walk and talk, rather than what others think, takes courage. I am thankful that despite all my failings, His grace extends even to me. As it does for you and the world through His sacrifice. His love for us is deep. And nothing could come even close to the joy living for Him brings.

    He sees us. He knows us. He cares for us. We don’t walk this journey alone. And yes: God is so grand. Thank you for blessing us with your words.

    God bless you.

  9. I, too, have loved you from the first time I saw you compete and win the Food Network Contest. Your warmth could be felt as I watched every episode and I was drawn to you immediately. I learned a lot from your article. I’m guilty of being a people pleaser as well. I don’t know why it’s so important to some of us that everyone likes & approves of us. I don’t approve of everyone. And I don’t like everyone. But when it comes to them approving and liking me…that’s a different story. I am getting better at it as I grow in my walk with the Lord. I loved how you pointed out that Jesus does force us to pick a side. We are either for him or against him. He even says that he will spit us out of his mouth if we are lukewarm. Rev 3:16. Thank you for sharing your heart and past insecurities, and your humble beginnings wearing shoes with holes them…I wish I could give you a big hug. Thanks again.

  10. Thank you Aarti. When I had cable TV I watched Guy Fieri’s cooking show that he shot right in his backyard. One episode you were cooking with the other chefs and you won! Thank you for encouraging us and sharing you experiences so that we know we are not alone in our struggles. May God continue to bless you and your family.

  11. This was so timely and inspiring to me at a time when I was faced with a challenge. The challenge was to be bold or be accepted. Thank God that my love of my Savior gave me the boldness to speak up!!!! Thanks for sharing!!!❤️

  12. I KNEW we were kindred spirits lady. Since I “met” you on Food Network Star I felt the sisterhood. Now I learn you, like me, are a people pleaser and birds-in-flight viewer. Those are always majestic moments for me when I see a flock in flight. I pull the car over and just wonder in God’s design. Love you girl!

  13. Once again dear lady, you spoke to my aching heart this morning. I read through tears but feel strengthened. Even at 81 and on Session (board) of our little Presbyterian church) I am still a people pleaser. I was bullied over being short and heavy all through school and had LOW self esteem. I know as a daughter of God I am unconditionally loved by Him and thankfully my family. Today I had to take a strong stand against a decision our church is making. It hurts and is frightening but I must please our Lord. I don’t mind not going along with the decision made but don’t want to be devisive either. I request prayer from any of your faithful followers of our Lord and from you. I love you as a sister I know I’ll never meet in this world but will share a relationship with in heaven. Keep on keeping on as I’m sure you will with God’s help. You are blessing sooo many.

  14. What you said was so true Aarit. People look at what we do and say. They look at what we wear. Were we live. In general they look at everything about us. If we don’t fit in to that type of person they want us to be what they want us to be. If we don’t fit in they will not want to know us. We have to remember not to try and be people pleasers to get people to like us. If they are guanine they will like us for just who we are. We will not have to try and fit in. There are people like that will do anything to fit in. In God eyes that is wrong. The only person we have to please is God. Not people. We will not please everyone. Why should we want to. We should be remembering we are to be ourselves and not put on false self to have someone like us. Even if they are popular. Everyone seems to like them. Why can’t they like me you. Don’t try to fit in somewhere that you know you only get yourself into trouble with trying to please them to like you. God wouldn’t want you do that. God made you just the way you are. You are special to him. All that matters is what God thinks of you. Not people. If they like you. Not expect you do things to get their approval. They will let you be yourself. Who God made you to be. Not try to do things to please them. That is wrong in God’s eyes. As they if they cared about wouldn’t expect you live up to them. A person like that is not worth of getting to know. Just pray for them. God wouldn’t want you be with them. I did try to get to know this person. Who is friends with a friend of mine. But in the end she didn’t want to know me. God said I will give you the friends. That will treat you right and will like you want to do things to get them to like you. They are not worth getting to know God said to or having as Friend. I was glad I listened to God. As if I had got this person friendship it might have worked out. I would God showed me doing things to get her approval. Trying to live up to her standards to get her to like. God said to me that not right. Just pray for her. You don’t need her as friend. Even though she is friends with your friend. You got over nice friends. Who will not expect you to any thing else but yourself. Like you for who you are. Thank you again incourage for another excellent reading. God bless. Dawn Ferguson-Little. Xx

  15. Aarti I have loved you since the first time I saw you on t.v. competing & knew there was something special about you. I am also a people pleaser & it’s so hard for me when someone doesn’t like me. I’ll keep trying harder & harder but my wise husband would encourage me to let it go & move on. Sometimes it doesn’t matter what you do people are people & have their own issues.

    I think you are such a breath of fresh air on the food network & think about you encouraging just with your smile & your demeanor with Guy & the rest of the gang. You are so sweet with your comments while judging & I want to just send you a big hug!!!

    Lord bless you Aarti with great success on the Food Network shining for the Lord!

  16. I love this, Aarti! I even love your name! Often I am timid about sharing what God has done for me in my life. You are encouraging me to speak up and let my heart messages see the light of day! Thank you and may you be richly blessed in all that you do.

  17. Thank you so much for this! I watch you all the time on the Food Network and love you and your talents…all of them..Bless you …trying to rest in who God made me to be and let go of people pleasing myself.

  18. This fills my cup. I recently added my favorite verse to my email signature. It was my sloshing, I was a bit worried it would get push back. I have received some wonderful messages and great chats from people. God is so good. This post just made me go find you on Instagram.

  19. WOW! Thank you for sharing that. I’m sorry you went through that, yet God’s plan was to make you grow. So AMEN to that! I so appreciate your boldness and respect you for it. I always appreciate the fact that you are one of the few on GGG that don’t use the Lord’s name in vain!! THANK YOU! You are an amazing person. Thank you for sharing your heart. I’m so grateful that (in) courage has given you a voice.

  20. Love this Aarti and love reading about your love for our Jesus! Thank you so much for sharing and please continue to do so! Keep shining for Him! God bless you, friend! ❤️

  21. Thank you!!! Very well said! I understand & am currently being delivered from the religious spirit that has hindered my journey with the Lord. Thank you Jesus!

  22. Thank you for standing out in this way! I love the cooking shows, and love this even more, to know that you stood up for yourself and the Lord in you!

  23. Once again, in God’s perfect timing; He has used someone like yourself to solidify my hearts heaviness and it’s need to be free to be free in Him. I know that I know; but the fear of man/ people pleasing has gotten in the way of truly abiding in Him as I should. I’ve just began and will be teaching the high school ladies group at church/ the book Gospel Treason and whoa- thank you for your transparency- it’s def given me that reminder kick-

  24. I followed you exactly for that! I could see Jesus in you! I knew it must be hard to proclaim Him in the land of unbelievers, so I have been praying for you! I also think Bren is the support and encourager you needed in a mate! Bless you, Aarti!

  25. I am so happy to call you a sister in Christ like you stated it isn’t always easy, but so worth it!! I honestly love watching you on GGG and love your energy and personality. I especially loved when your husband was on with you competing and you guys win . God Bless you and know I will be praying for you ❤️

  26. Glory to God as you write encouragement in these worldly days. Be strong, be courageous. Blessings to you and yours

  27. What’s fantastic writer you are Aartie! That and clearly so much more, thank you for sharing!

  28. Well said and such a good word for so many of us. Keep on being your awesome self.

  29. What a wonderful reminder. Thank you for sharing and for keeping your focus on God and not this world. Your staying strong, and vocal, for God plants seeds in other people pleasers. I appreciate you. May God bless you and answer your heart’s desire and deepest prayers.

  30. For sure the spreading of your faith is a BIG reason I continue to follow your page! Keep shining your light!

  31. I’m so happy that you wrote this. I sometimes struggle with this. I am a people pleaser too and I want to to be bolder. You are an inspiration to me. I love your vulnerability, because if you didn’t talk about your human weakness, I would still be thinking that you have it all together. Thank you for being authentic.

  32. I love your heart for the Lord and your spirit!!
    I too am a people pleaser.
    I’m working on just being me at 55 years old.
    I enjoy watching the happenings of you and your family over the years.
    You’re a blessing to many!! ❤️

  33. The Lord put it on my heart to share this with you….

    “The Lord has broken through my enemies before me like a breaking flood. Therefore the name of that place is called Baal-perazim. (which means, Lord of the Breakthrough).”

    I love this because it helps me to realize that it is not just God’s actions, but also his character that I can depend on. God’s nature and his heart never change, even if his actions aren’t always predictable. 
    God’s ways are higher than ours. But the fight of faith isn’t about twisting God’s arm so he will perform a specific outcome for us. Faith is so much deeper than our external circumstances. The battle we face every day is to trust God’s heart and believe for the impossible.
    We are always going to need breakthrough in our lives. Jesus told us, “In this world you will have trouble.” (John 16:33). Our fight, the trials, and the hardships will continue as long as we are on this side of glory. But until that day, we can hold on to the promise given by Jesus in the last part of that verse, “But take heart I have overcome the world.”
    So when the mountains loom large in front of us,, I pray that our faith will stir up and we will believe for more. I pray the Lord would remind us of what He has done and never forget who he is.
    Breakthrough isn’t just something God does, it is WHO he is!
    “Then I will say unto my soul, ‘Don’t be discouraged; don’t be disturbed, for I fully expect my Savior-God to break through for me.’ Then I will have plenty of reasons to praise him all over again.” (Psalm 43:5).

    His love will see us through, so we invite You to love on us as only YOU Lord can today!!! I speak breakthroughs over my friend and I ask for a new encouragement over she and myself today, in your beautiful,wonderful , and powerful name! Amen”

  34. I am a avid watcher of Guy’s Grocery Games and love seeing you on the program and your writing on different Christian venues.
    God has placed you in such an awesome place for such a time as this.
    Thank you for sharing. Standing up for your beliefs-especially when they are different from others is hard.
    I know in the culture we live in right now communication is so affected by the divisive spirit in our country. It seems as if any subject can be divisive.
    As a believer I feel that I can share my viewpoint and beliefs as I feel everyone should be able to-even if I disagree them.
    The thing that separates us believers from the world is how we do it. What spirit are we sharing it in? Are the fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control) present in what or how we share?
    Even if it is shared in the right spirit people can still reject it-and they do. We are left with the decision of whether or not we will live our lives out honestly according to what we believe.
    I am 65 years old and can tell you that there will be people who will walk away, but there will be others that will be drawn by the Spirit to you. You will have opportunities to encourage and share things with others just because of where the Lord has placed you. I can testify to the joy that has come from living my faith out through the years. It has far out weighed the loss. It might sound funny, but it is so freeing and fulfilling! Such a rich life!

  35. Aarti, I love that image of our glasses sloshing over with our adoration of Jesus. I want to be that kind of woman too, who instead of trying to fill up on the world’s approval, remembers that true satisfaction comes from our obedience to God and friedship with Christ. So well said, friend. So very proud of you!

  36. Thanks so much for your words & encouragement. Thanks for rising up & sticking up for Jesus.
    In my time of grief after losing my step daughter who I had the privilege of raising you responded to my comment. Your kindness has got me through some rough days! Thanks so much

  37. I don’t mind reading nor listening to you write or talk about God. I find that it helps me to understand other people in what they are trying to convey.
    Be proud that you love Him! I am. ❤️

  38. Thank You…. I am so excited to hear your voice regardless of popularity….. I have always been a fan even more so now.. May HE bless you with all you need day by day

  39. Thank you so much for sharing your heart today! It obviously resonated with many people, including me!! It made me smile from ear to ear after a long, tough day. Like someone commented, it was like a hug to my soul! I will refer to your tweet often. I am feeling way more confident now to share my faith, how God has worked in my life. I have you to thank for that! God bless!

  40. Thank you Arti! I too am a people pleaser! Be true to who you are and your love of Jesus..

    Badass from Boston

  41. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I work in the mental health field, and I hold back my faith quite a bit. I hope to be in a place where I can share my faith more freely soon!

  42. Aarti,

    I used to be shy & feel I didn’t have a testimony. Fast forward years later & God has given me a big testimony. Plus after 17 years at a Christian church I learned about having a relationship with Jesus. Now I’m out there speaking my mind not caring what others think. Also raising hands with open palms in praise & adoration of Jesus for what He did for me on the cross. Don’t care what the world says about me-just want to hear the immortal words well done thou good & faithful servant. God said if you do things for the world’s approval that is all you get.

    Blessings 🙂

  43. Love this perspective and encouragement! I first “met” you while watching Food Network…loved your bubbly personality then, but love you even more now as a sister in Christ! You go, girl…martini and all!!! xoxox

  44. Thank you Artie! You are so very encouraging! I too have held back from talking about my faith at times, but this is a great reminder that God is good always and will bring about what He has meant for us no matter what! God bless you!!

  45. So refreshing and much needed to be stated in these turbulent and faithless times! You’re truly blessed in the spoken and written word! I have always enjoyed your FN shows/persona, but more importantly moved by your open, joyful Christian spirit. This, alone, made me an instant new follower of your social media presence! #authentic & #humble you!☺️ From one one people-pleaser-mama to another (who always appreciates a half-full )…God Bless You! Linda P.

  46. This is a great article. It’s as if you were writing about my struggle. Thank you . Much needed and appreciated.

  47. Thank you for sharing your faith! I have always enjoyed you on food network! Your upbeat personality was great! When I started following you on Facebook, and realized you were a Christian, I understood why! God has given you insight and a beautiful voice to share His truths with your readers! Please continue to share what He teaches you! I have learned a lot from reading your posts! God bless!

  48. It’s so good to hear how the Lord has patiently led and grown you, dear Aarti. Thanks for sharing in honest authentic ways, from the heart. ♥️

    Love you!

  49. That makes so much sense. I am a true believer and would never turn my back on a person and their beliefs even if they do not align with mine. But I am a person who feels that I hide my beliefs on social media in fear of the criticism.
    I read your article and think to myself; is there a legitimate reason for my fear? I don’t speak to or even know alot of the people on my social media. I am just me. Do I even really care? Deep down no.
    Anyway thanks so much for this. I enjoy watching you and seeing you cook. You look genuinely happy . I look forward to continuing to read your articles.
    Have a great day and God bless

  50. Yes! Yes! Yes!
    I have also struggled with self-esteem issues, and mistreatment from those who should have loved me. AND God still finds me worthy. So I am always ready to speak of the peace and hope within me for the sake of my true friend and Savior, Jesus Christ. Yes, I loved the visual of the martini, perfect!

  51. Aarti, I have always been a fan, but when you started writing for (in) courage, I was so excited! I knew how much I loved you on Food Network (since you won!), but this really solidified it even more! Thanks for being such a wonderful example of how to be that light in our circles of influence!

  52. I watched you become the Food Network Star, and liked you from the beginning! I am happy for your success, and when I found out you were a Christian just a couple of years ago, I was even happier, because my faith was given to me by Jesus 45 years ago…i am 75 now. Keep talking about Him and cooking to His Glory. He will never let you down. And, I liked the cocktail analogy. You are the first celebrity I have ever responded to! Your posts speak to me when I need them the most.

  53. Thank you for sharing this…as a fellow people pleaser, the past 18 months have been a very difficult refining and training ground (of sorts) for mento become used to speaking truth against lies and light into the darkness. I am so thankful and have been blessed by your words…and may our Lord Jesus Christ return quickly! And I have always loved watching you on the Food Network. Keep letting His light shine through you!!

  54. Aarti,

    Well, sweet (in)sister, a bonding moment: I’m a recovering pleaser :).

    I almost cheered right here– “Why does God make us pick a side? Perhaps it’s because He knows how intoxicating validation is to us — because He made us to seek His. The world’s approval is a counterfeit version of His friendship — one that leads to sorrow because it so often blurs our vision.”

    Why do we settle for second best, ya know?

    So lovely getting to know you through your words <3.

  55. Thank you! It was much needed. I have a tendency to want everyone to like me and everything I post. Reading this article help me to realize that while some may not like me or my post, there are so many others that do! Thank you for sharing and being transparent. It has help me a lot.

  56. It’s so awesome to see a celebrity share their love of our LORD! Never, EVER stop being the person that God inspires you to be. I’ll be praying for your boldness.

  57. Yay for you! So glad you continued on the right path. Loved this post. Continue marching forward.

  58. I love everything about this and I am SO grateful you choose to share His word with us! I liked you before I knew you were a follower of Christ and I like you even MORE now! xoxo

  59. Thank you, a very welcome read as I lie here in a nursing home recuperating from diabetic surgery. Many years ago when I was still able I considered myself a gourmet cook. I miss it. Mostly I miss good food. Your appearances on Guy’s show and Chopped bring me joy. I wish you many blessings.

  60. Praising God that you stood strong in His Light on His Path for you and continue to reflect His Light in obedience and honoring Him. Keep following his Footsteps. He is Everything. It is Marvelous to know Him…best blessing ever!

  61. Love this article. The pure character and love shows through this writing. Thank you Arti for expressing you faith so eloquently and sharing God’s love! God bless you and your family.

  62. Thank you for taking a stand for God! Yes, all of us want all followers to agree with us, but the only one that matters is King Jesus. You were created and given talents for His glory and boy you are on the right track!

  63. Love this article, ‘I have fought the good fight I have finished the race I have kept the FAITH!’
    2Tim 4:17
    We press on….I relate to this article, thank u, we are not alone on this adventurous journey with God. Much love dear sister in Christ.

  64. Aarti , thank you for your words of encouragement. I needed to hear this, right now, and here it was! God works in mysterious ways. He sent me to those words. So please don’t stop sharing faith filled messages

  65. Aarti,
    I really appreciate this word of encouragement. I have been struggling with wanting acknowledgment from my siblings only to be constantly being disappointed. After reading your testimony, it helps me to try to put into perspective where my validation should come from. My biggest fan is My Father in heaven. Thank you again for sharing your heart to help mine.

  66. Aarti, what a beautiful testimony you gave in this article. I have seen you many times on Food Network, but now I know that your radiant smile comes from knowing Jesus as your personal Savior. What a blessing for the body of Christ. Thank you