About the Author

Jennifer Dukes Lee is the author of several books, including Growing Slow. She and her husband live on the family farm, raising crops, pigs, and two humans. She’s a fan of dark chocolate, emojis, eighties music, bright lipstick, and Netflix binges. She wants to live life in such a way...

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
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(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. Thank you for writing this Jennifer! It has so encouraged my heart today. Jesus did say, In this world you will have trouble, not a cushy life!

  2. Thank you Jennifer for these encouraging words. I needed them. God bless you and may the Lord encourage you as you have encouraged me and others here.

  3. Suffering—both the kind we walk through ourselves and the kind we carry for others—cracks us open in ways that give God greater access, I’m learning. He’s with us, as you said. Patiently teaching us His nature. Always seeing us. Always listening. Always present.

    And that lie that God isn’t truly GOOD—wrestling with that one. I know it’s true, but this lyric from an Upper Room song is challenging whether I believe it’s ALWAYS true. The line is “You do all things well.” When the surrendered and selfless must walk the hardest roads, do I still believe that this is the very best plan? When God could have written the story differently, but doesn’t, do I trust that He’s authoring it well?

    And yet, I find grace in the questions that demand more than a polite answer because they bring me continually back to God—and we can’t linger in His presence and remain unchanged.

    • Twyla, your honest words resonated with me so much. Thank you for writing them. During the past 7 years I suffered immensely because of a condition that occurred over night, without any warning sign or symptoms. I learned to trust God with everything and I have to say, this has changed my life tremendously. Without medication, only with the help of my deep faith, through strong discipline and healthy eating, this condition disappeared in the same way it came, over night and without any warning. I was so flabbergasted at first, but then I went on my knees and thanked God for teaching me a huge lesson. Ever since, I truly believe that God reaches us “best” when we are suffering the most. No one, not even God, ever promised us a painless life. I am more than happy to pick up my cross daily and follow HIM, it’s so worth it, even though I often can’t explain Gods ways.
      Blessings to you – I pray that God continues to lead you,
      (Edmonton, Canada)

      • Vera, your story is incredibly encouraging. Honored that you’d share. I get what you’re saying, and have found it true too. I wouldn’t trade the stretched-out seasons that pull me constantly to my knees because I know God differently there. He’s near and dear in a way I wouldn’t give up for an easier road.

        In a way, the things I walk with others through are the hardest to reconcile. I want to fix it. Make it go away. Because it’s not fair (and God doesn’t promise fairness this side of heaven). These are the things that challenge me to trust that God “does all things WELL.”

        But I know how paper-thin the space is between heaven and ground when we must depend on God moment by moment. If that’s the only redemption this side of heaven, it’s still more than enough.

        • Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, Twyla. I hear you, I find myself in the same place when it comes to my friends, I want to solve the problems, ease the pain, take away the burden…but I learned over the years that this is NOT my job. My job is only “to provide the loaves and the fish”, the rest leave to God. Or, to speak with the words of today’s message, to “walk alongside my friends, to support them and helping them to strengthen their faith, and to praise God for walking with us through it all”. It’s not easy to see others suffer. During my many years of prison ministry and then after-care ministry, you see so much brokenness and pain, suffering…all in one person.
          My motivation is what some wise man said many years ago: we can’t all be Mother Teresa, but we can support one person at a time.
          Love and blessings,
          Vera / if you want to continue by email: (vsager@telus.net)

    • You ask such good, honest questions, Twyla. I love this: “I find grace in the questions that demand more than a polite answer because they bring me continually back to God…” Thank you for that.

  4. Wow! I have felt all these thoughts ! This is not going to get better, your prayers are waisted,God isn’t going to come through for you. The brokenness in our family is overwhelming at times & seems so impossible to heal. I pray daily & try & trust my Jesus with the outcome, it’s so hard. Please pray for our family

    • J, It’s my honor to pray.

      Lord, right now I lift up J and J’s family. I don’t know the details, but you do. They need a breakthrough. They need healing. They need to know that you are working all things for good, even though the enemy means it for evil. Be with them today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

  5. Thank you for this reminder how God will NEVER leave us or forsake us. He’s always with us. It’s been a tough year for many, and we have one Hope, our Savior and our God. He walks and talks with us every day. He knows and sees all things. He knows what’s best, for HE created us. He loves us No Matter What. Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. 🙂

  6. “Sometimes, life feels more like winter, where you’re trapped in an unforgiving blizzard.” So good to know that God is with me when the blizzard comes.

  7. Thank you all for posting your thoughts. I feel your pain along with my own. Your words have lifted me, and I know God is SO good. I pray for each of you. Life is hard, but we have HOPE and we know we are just passing through. One day we will be with Him and there will be NO pain.

  8. Jennifer,

    God never promised us a rose garden life. He said we would have trials & tribulations. I find it’s in the midst of those trials that I lean in closer to God. I yearn for Him more. The lessons I learn stay with me forever plus I become more Christ like. Romans 5:3-5 says it best: Not only so, but we[a] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

    Blessings 🙂