The Living Room with Joanna Weaver

Joanna Weaver

Join best-selling author (and fellow struggler), Joanna Weaver in the Living Room – a podcast for Christian women featuring inspiring interviews with Christian leaders and solo shows shaped to a woman’s heart. All designed to give you practical tools for living, loving, and leading like Jesus. Learn more at bit.ly/tlrpodcast

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All Episodes

"God never forsakes His people in the wilderness!" In this episode, Lauren Chandler shares powerful truths from her newest Bible Study, With Us in the Wilderness: a Study of the Book of Numbers. We are all prone to walk through wilderness seasons when life is difficult and God feels distant. Lauren reminds us that even when God feels far away, His presence is always near. In love, God allows wilderness seasons to draw us nearer to Him, but the wilderness will not last forever. While the Israelites wandered in the wilderness and struggled to trust God before experiencing the fulfillment of His promise, we can learn to follow His leading and experience His presence every step of the journey. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Numbers in the Hebrew Scripture is called "In the Wilderness"  Being in a wilderness season does not necessarily mean we are doing something wrong God's love followed Adam and Eve out of the garden; His presence is always with us in the wilderness Your faith can be strengthened and deepened through the wilderness In Numbers, the tabernacle of God's presence was in the center of the camp Our lives should be centered and grounded in God as well God doesn't ask us to come to Him already put together Go to God undone and allow Him to put you back together Find a way to connect with God every morning and stay connected to Him throughout the day The Lord was leading the Israelites through the wilderness, they just had to keep their eyes on the pillar of fire and pillar of cloud Choose to live from the shadow of God's presence rather than the shadow of your fears He is the God of the wilderness just as much as He is the God of the promise Like Moses, we can take our complaints straight to the Lord Be faithful with your gifts and opportunities but continue to find your identity in being a child of God We are defined by God and His love for us, not by what we can do for Him Don't ever believe you outgrow the gospel, we need it every minute of every day The Lord bless you     and keep you;  the Lord make his face shine on you     and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you     and give you peace. ~Numbers 6:24-26 Links from Show Bible Study Book: With Us in the Wilderness: a Study of the Book of Numbers Teen Girls' Bible Study: With Us in the Wilderness: a Study of the Book of Numbers Leader Kit: With Us in the Wilderness: a Study of the Book of Numbers Steadfast Love - Bible Study Book: A Study of Psalm 107 [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Lauren Website | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Lauren's interview?

Nov 24

43 min 37 sec

"There is so much available to you as a child of God every day!" In this episode, Juli Bevere, shares her personal story of learning how to fully live as a child of God. Juli married into ministry when she married the oldest child of John and Lisa Bevere. She partnered with her husband, Addison, and his siblings, in co-founding SonsAndDaughters.tv and authoring I AM: Find Your Identity. Claim Your Freedom. Embrace the Adventure. As children of God we are invited to step into the fullness and adventure that God has waiting for us, believing and living His truths. When Juli began the work of finding her identity in Christ alone she discovered it was both an undoing and unraveling of her past hurts, lies, mistakes, and preconceived ideas as well as a building up into God's truths for her life. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God uses small and seemingly insignificant things for His glory There is so much available to us on a daily basis as children of God Walking in close Christian community is critical for personal growth I am called: even our daily mundane tasks are meaningful and can hold great purpose Our calling is not found in a formula, but in a growing relationship with Jesus Sons and daughters of the King do not have to carry the weight of trying to sustain their own lives God's will is not a distant destination but rather being present with Him right now If we walk close to Jesus, we will be in His will rather than trying to find His will You cannot determine the real you apart from Christ; only He knows the real you When we fully surrender to Jesus, we no longer have to worry about how things will work out Balance is an illusion because some things require more of us in certain seasons God's will is not always easy; but often requires an active faith and partnering effort with Him Our growing is a becoming process, not an event God often uses the cracks in our lives and our weaknesses to reveal His glory Freedom and joyful adventure come after you discover your identity in Christ We were designed to need God daily (Matthew 6:11) Our only job is to stay connected to God; He will guide our steps and produce His fruit God loves you and He wants you  Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. ~ John 15:4 Links from Show I AM: Find Your Identity. Claim Your Freedom. Embrace the Adventure [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Juli Bevere Website | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Juli's interview?

Nov 10

52 min 59 sec

"Show your children a life worth imitating!" In this episode, Rachel-Ruth Lotz Wright, shares from her book, Jesus Followers: Real-Life Lessons for Igniting Faith in the Next Generation. Rachel is the granddaughter of Billy Graham, and gives some insights about their upbringing to provide spiritual wisdom and practical advice for raising the next generation of Jesus Followers. If we want our children to look to Jesus and trust Him completely throughout their lives, we have to demonstrate an authentic love for Him in our homes. The good news is that whether or not you were raised in a godly home, it can always start with you. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Our choices can be the hinge for generations to come Make your faith your own and then let your kids see it Demonstrate a love for God by being in His Word Our hunger for the Word grows as we meet with Jesus "I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better." ~ Ephesians 1:17  Enjoy and love your kids consistently through each stage of life Many battles for our kids are won through our prayers As our children grow older, we need to release control and trust the seed of God's Word planted in their hearts will grow Pass the baton to your children so they can learn to run Be the same person at home as you are in public The way we live speaks louder than the words we say When we continually put the Word into our hearts, we always have enough to pour into others Pray for your kids and share God's Word with them every day No matter what is going on in the world, lead your kids to see it through faith rather than fear Show your kids the joy that can only be found in Jesus in the midst of trials Train up a child in the way he should go;     even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 Links from Show Jesus Followers: Real-Life Lessons for Igniting Faith in the Next Generation Rachel-Ruth's Bible Study [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Rachel-Ruth Website | Facebook | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Rachel-Ruth's interview?

Oct 27

38 min 35 sec

"God is still writing your story!" In this episode, Sheila Walsh shares powerful truths from God's Word and her personal journey in her newest book, Holding On When You Want to Let Go: Clinging to Hope When Life Is Falling Apart.  Early on in her public ministry, Sheila broke down on national television and felt like her usefulness and worthiness was gone and  therefore she had reached the end of her road. But God was not finished with her yet. She learned to look to Jesus in the midst of her pain and has inspired millions to do the same. When Covid-19 hit in 2020, Sheila felt the once-familiar spiral once again and began to seek the Holy Spirit for direction on how to live in these new challenging times.  Sheila reminds us to release control over the broken and missing pieces in our lives to the One who holds it all. Will you find shelter in the God who is big enough to receive you as you are? { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We can learn how to access the full-weight of the promises of God "The silence of God's voice will make you wonder if He's even there. The absence of God's presence will make you wonder if He even cares. He is and He does." ~ Chuck Swindoll The Psalms can speak for us, giving us a language when we don't know how to express ourselves "We live by faith and not by explanations." ~ Warren Wiersbe We must ask ourselves if we believe Scripture to be true, then how would that change the way we are acting We can bring every missing and broken piece of our lives to the foot of the cross True worship declares God's goodness even when we can't see it Only God gets to write your last chapter  "Be Still" means letting go of what you are trying to control and holding on to the One who always has control (Psalm 46:10) There is no condemnation and there is no separation from God (Romans 8) God is the God of the messer-upper Learn to take small steps toward God rather than toward a specific outcome The more we get to know God, the more we know we can trust Him Our God is big enough to receive our questions and to love us in the midst of our doubts Every time we walk into a room the atmosphere should change because of who lives in us We are always on mission to bring the light of Jesus every where we go While disagreements are inevitable, our greatest calling is to love Repentance is an action, not an emotion Reading the Word of God out loud will lift your spirit "Hold on to Jesus with everything that's in you and on the days when you feel yourself slipping remember you are being held" I would have despaired had I not believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living. ~ Psalm 27:13 Links from Show BOOK: Holding On When You Want to Let Go: Clinging to Hope When Life Is Falling Apart STUDY GUIDE: Holding On When You Want to Let Go Study Guide: Clinging to Hope When Life Is Falling Apart The Bible App - You Version  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Sheila Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Sheila's interview?

Oct 13

41 min 43 sec

"It's the little things that make us who we are!"  Stress. Anxiety. Constant headaches. Are you suffering from a life of hurry? In this episode, Jennifer Dukes Lee shares from her newest book, Growing Slow: Lessons on Un-Hurrying Your Heart from an Accidental Farm Girl. Running full-force as a news reporter, Jennifer and her husband discovered that they could no longer sustain the pace of their city life. It was when they transitioned back to their family farm that God revealed the powerful gift of slowing down and recognizing the value in each season of life. So many of us suffer from the constant pressure to produce results, hurry to the next stage in life, prove ourselves or be more than we are. But God never intended for His people to live that way. Jennifer shares how we can live the life we've been given without regrets when we learn to flourish in the season we are currently in. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Slowing down requires that we adopt a new mindset Having the life we truly desire means we have to slow down rather than speed up Time is not the enemy; it can be your friend God makes everything beautiful in its time (Ecclesiastes 3:11) If you pick up the phone first thing in the morning, you are already sending your body into fight or flight mode for the day Growing slow becomes a super power Growing slow gives us permission to call out and validate the good, small things After planting seeds, there is a period of time where it looks like nothing is happening Like farming, winter seasons in our lives are very necessary, slow, and healing In agriculture, 1/4 of the entire growing season is in the dormitory of winter God can slow down seasons of productivity to create something new in the soil of our hearts We were not made to be productive all the time; we cannot create constant harvest and results Winter is an opportunity to celebrate, rest and prepare our hearts for the coming season Sometimes it is when we come to the end of ourselves that we finally make room for Jesus Hurry does not always have to do with our calendar or to-do list A hurried heart can make you feel behind in life Establish your own unhurried life habits 3 Practical Tips for Growing Slow and Becoming More Productive:  Get up 10 minutes earlier than normal to intentionally welcome the day and give it all to God Sit down while eating to fully taste and enjoy it Stop multi-tasking There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1 Links from Show NEW BOOK: Growing Slow: Lessons on Un-Hurrying Your Heart from an Accidental Farm Girl  Habbits of the Unhurried PDF [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Jennifer Dukes Lee Website | Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Jennifer's interview?

Sep 29

43 min 29 sec

"The journey is the destination!"  In this episode, season 18 winner of The Voice, Todd Tilghman, and his beautiful wife, Brooke, share from their book, Every Little Win: How Celebrating Small Victories Can Lead to Big Joy. Like most of us, the Tilghman's have experienced significant lows in their marriage, ministry and personal lives right alongside the highs and victories. And like Paul, they have learned the art of being content in every season. While Todd's experience on The Voice was a big win, it is not what made him or his family who they are today. Long before winning the national competition in front of millions of people, Todd and his family learned to be faithful and grateful in their simple, every day life. Rather than accredit the victory to their own talents and abilities, Todd and Brooke view their lives as evidence to the overwhelming, abundant grace of God. God wants to reveal Himself through your life as well! He wants to fill you with joy every day as you shift your focus to recognize the little wins all along the way. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God began preparing Todd and his family for a transition and shift in ministry The Voice was a platform God used to lead them into a new season They had to overcome fear and intimidation each step of The Voice competition You can find rest because your future is already written Look for the little wins every day We tend to idolize the big wins which can make the rest of life feel like a disappointment One of the anecdotes to anxiety and depression is gratitude If you look for things to be thankful for, you will find them Normal, every day life is a gift that many of us take for granted You don't have to pretend that the rough moments don't happen to choose to highlight the good Life is a balancing act; the journey is the destination Pray for God's direction and then walk confidently into the doors He opens Be faithful with whatever God has placed in front of you God reveals Himself in new ways as we step out in faith Until the time came to fulfill his dreams,     the Lord tested Joseph’s character. ~ Psalm 105:19 Links from Show Every Little Win: How Celebrating Small Victories Can Lead to Big Joy [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Todd & Brooke Website |  Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from the Tilghman's interview?

Sep 15

41 min 12 sec

"When we change the language, we change a culture!"  If you've ever felt limited, discouraged and disappointed by your body, this is for you! In this episode, Jess Connolly shares from her newest book, Breaking Free from Body Shame: Dare to Reclaim What God Has Named Good. The feeling that we are not enough has become prevalent amongst women today, especially in regards to our body image. Having personally struggled with a miscarriage, an auto-immune disease and the pressure to look a certain way, Jess understands the physical and emotional pain, frustration and disappointment that many women face. It wasn't until she chose to change her thinking and allowed God to determine her worth that she experienced freedom from it all. God made you, loves you, has compassion on you and wants to set you free to live your best life! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We are living in a body conscience world which often leads to shame - feeling defeated, disappointed, frustrated or grieved The enemy uses our emotions to distort the truth about who we are The work that Jesus did on the cross defeated shame and fear Honor God with your words and always speak life about your body We need to call our body what God calls it - good. We will experience weakness and physical pain because we live in a fallen world, but the Good News reminds us our body is still good because God made it and will use all of it You do not have to pretend that everything is fine; God wants to comfort you and embrace you with compassion All of our bodies have limits but we are called to glorify God with the life and body He has given us "The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance." Psalm 16:6 Learn to thank God for both what your body can and cannot do It’s a daring, brave, courageous, bold move to believe what God says above what we feel Rather than striving to make your body good, recognize it as already good and therefore treat it well Ask God to set you free from shame and guilt and give you the keys to your freedom Call out what is good and beautiful in the women around you When we learn to judge ourselves less, we're less likely to judge others Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. ~ Romans 12:1-2 Links from Show NEW BOOK: Breaking Free from Body Shame: Dare to Reclaim What God Has Named Good You Are the Girl for the Job: Daring to Believe the God Who Calls You 034: Living Out Your Call Part 1 with Robin Jones Gunn | The Living Room 035: Living Out Your Call Part 2 with Robin Jones Gunn | The Living Room [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Jess Connolly Website |  Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Jess' interview?

Sep 1

34 min 4 sec

“You can survive anything if you'll redefine everything...” Today's Best of The Living Room Summer Series features Katherine Wolf and her book, Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. Having overcome a massive brain stem stroke that nearly ended her life at the age of 26, Katherine is a living testimony that God's grace is truly sufficient. She reminds us that God wants to help us pivot, persevere and overcome even our deepest trials so that we can truly live the life we've been given! BONUS - Don't miss your opportunity to win Katherine's book bundled with books from all of the authors featured in The Best of the Living Room Summer Series plus a $75 Amazon Gift card! Find out how below. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Rather than holding on to what was, learn to embrace the new Suffering can become a treasured gift that shapes your life in positive ways Nothing can take away the peace, joy and all good things found in Christ (Psalm 84:11) "Joy is the secret weapon of the Christian life" - GK Chesterton We get to take our worries to the foot of the cross rather than live with them Until we surrender our unmet expectations, we cannot receive the gifts that God has for us Walking through suffering with joy and perseverance can be one of the greatest testimonies Decide what voices you will allow to speak into your life (who will be your "soul board of directors"?) Live with gratitude and seek to recognize the good in every situation Determine to establish your hope in the Lord True hope is a future promise lived out now "Hope is believing in advance what will only make sense in reverse" ~ Philip Yancey What is true about God in the light is still true in your darkest moments Receiving suffering can be a big part of living a life worthy of your calling (Ephesians 4:1) The greatest things that God has done are inside of you (2 Corinthians 4:17) God is always doing something new When someone else is suffering, less words can be the best words When one person suffers in a marriage, both truly suffer A great marriage establishes true friendship and chooses to cheer one another on God has given us everything we need to adapt, persevere and overcome (2 Peter 1:3) Stop marinating in what you thought your life would look like and accept what your Good Father has allowed Always trust that God is good and remember that He is able to redeem all things True beauty is all about walking away from shame and discovering God's voice Links from Show Hope Heals: A True Story of Overwhelming Loss and an Overcoming Love Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Katherine Wolf Website |Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Giant Summer Giveaway Our contest is ending August 30th, so be sure to enter soon - and as many times as you like! You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six episodes!! Each time you use the hashtag, you'll get another entry On September 1st, we'll search the hashtags and randomly draw a winner! Thanks for helping us spread the news!! Having a Mary Heart Video Bible Study available ONLINE!!! Designed to go with my best-selling book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, this 10-session study repackages the previous DVD Study teachings in a course format - but also includes a FREE study guide! Perfect for groups and individuals.

Aug 18

51 min 16 sec

“Is the life you lead the life that longs to live in you?” Today's Best of The Living Room Summer Series features Rebekah Lyons and her book Rhythms of Renewal: Trading Stress and Anxiety for a Life of Peace and Purpose. Rebekah's story of embracing the unexpected curveballs in her life rather than allowing them to steal her peace has resonated with so many women. Having special needs children has greatly shaped her sense of purpose and trust in God. She shares ways we can all function within the rhythms God established for us, and through doing so, discover our God-given purpose and the rest He offers for our souls. BONUS - Don't miss your opportunity to win Rebekah's book bundled with books from all of the authors featured in The Best of the Living Room Summer Series plus a $75 Amazon Gift card! Find out how below. Also, stay tuned for another interview with Rebekah Lyons, on her upcoming devotional, A Surrendered Yes: 52 Devotions to Let Go and Live Free, releasing this September! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Your environment doesn't have to determine your peace Relapses remind us of our frailty and our need for God every day Rest and Restore are input rhythms that God pours into our lives when we partner with Him Connect and Create are output rhythms that God designed us to experience for our good and His purposes You cannot give what you have not received The effectiveness of our creativity is dependent upon our ability to rest We are invited to pour out our hearts to God rather than stuff everything in God is a holistic God who dwells in every area of our lives and wants to help us become whole When we offer our worst to God, He offers His best in return - His righteousness, grace and love that covers it all Our diet greatly influences our mental health and God wants to partner with us in our health journey God's boundaries are a part of His offer for intimacy with us "Your spouse and your children are irritants. They refine you and show you who you really are." - Dr. Emerson Eggerichs  As we say "yes" to Jesus, His grace is released to enable us to do what we could never do on our own God wants to meet you in the midst of your pain and He never withholds the daily portion that you need Links from Show Rhythms of Renewal: Trading Stress and Anxiety for a Life of Peace and Purpose Healthy Rhythms Quiz Love & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Episodes You Might Enjoy TLR 001: Living Fully Alive with Susie Larson TLR 018: The Relentless Presence of God with Michele Cushatt TLR 023: Four Ways to Move Forward   Connect with Rebekah Lyons Website |Instagram | Facebook | Twitter  Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Giant Summer Giveaway You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six episodes!! Each time you use the hashtag, you'll get another entry On September 1st, we'll search the hashtags and randomly draw a winner! Thanks for helping us spread the news!! Having a Mary Heart Video Bible Study available ONLINE!!! Designed to go with my best-selling book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, this 10-session study repackages the previous DVD Study teachings in a course format - but also includes a FREE study guide! Perfect for groups and individuals. Get 20% off by entering the following code: LIVINGROOM20  INDIVIDUAL STUDY If you're a Bible Study Leader, there's also a group discount...just enter code: HAHMLEADER20 GROUP STUDY

Aug 4

59 min 30 sec

“If life was ice cream flavors, I wouldn’t have chosen pain and suffering...” Today's Best of The Living Room Summer Series features Michele Cushatt and her book I Am: A 60-Day Journey to Knowing Who You Are Because of Who He Is. Michele's personal journey through cancer forced her to discover her identity in Christ alone and has inspired many women to do the same. She reminds us that it is often the crucible of suffering that brings purity and depth in our walk with God. While life doesn’t always turn out the way we planned, it doesn’t have to shatter our confidence or steal our joy. BONUS - Don't miss your opportunity to win Michele's book bundled with books from all of the authors featured in The Best of the Living Room Summer Series plus a $75 Amazon Gift card! Find out how below. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Faith is not a transactional relationship that depends on doing all the right things. Cancer and trauma can make visible on the outside our brokenness on the inside. Our natural reaction to pain is to shut down in isolation or push ourselves too hard in perspiration. Rather than running or hiding, we are invited to sit and work through our pain with Jesus, the One who knows and understands it all. We often don't realize what our identity has been tied to until it is taken away. People often source their identity in careers, roles, talents, appearances, and relationships. But if it can be taken away, it’s not who you are. Our identity must be entrenched in God's love, the one thing that never changes. In the moments of our pain, we need God's presence, not His performance. The foundational cement under true confidence is humility. Humble confidence is found in honest self-awareness, owning our mistakes and recognizing areas for growth. We are invited to love God for who He is rather than striving to earn His love for what we do. Links from Show I Am: A 60-Day Journey to Knowing Who You Are Because of Who He Is Michele Cushatt's Inspired Life Mastermind Abba's Child: The Cry of the Heart for Intimate Belonging [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Michele Cushatt Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Giant Summer Giveaway You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six episodes!! Each time you use the hashtag, you'll get another entry On September 1st, we'll search the hashtags and randomly draw a winner! Thanks for helping us spread the news!! Having a Mary Heart Video Bible Study available ONLINE!!! Designed to go with my best-selling book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, this 10-session study repackages the previous DVD Study teachings in a course format - but also includes a FREE study guide! Perfect for groups and individuals. Get 20% off by entering the following code: LIVINGROOM20  INDIVIDUAL STUDY If you're a Bible Study Leader, there's also a group discount...just enter code: HAHMLEADER20 GROUP STUDY Don't Miss an Episode... We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Michele's interview?

Jul 21

37 min 23 sec

“There is beauty in every step when you just keep walking with Jesus!” Today's Best of The Living Room Summer Series features Debbie Lindell and her book, She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live.  Debbie's personal struggle to believe that she had what it took to lead others and learning to seek God and rely on His truth and power resonated with so many women. She reminds us all that it is not enough to know or even understand the truth of God's Word, we have to embrace it for ourselves. BONUS - Don't miss your opportunity to win Debbie's book bundled with books from all of the authors featured in The Best of the Living Room Summer Series plus a $75 Amazon Gift card! Find out how below. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The enemy wants us to doubt God's truth about who we are We have to believe that God can use us and then rely completely on His power If we rely only on ourselves, we will never see the supernatural power of God manifested in our lives Get alone with Jesus so He can speak His truth and direction into your heart God specializes in changing hearts When we choose obedience, it gives God access to change our hearts If we'll give God our time, He can transform our faulty thinking God longs for His children to look to Him first and He never fails to respond When we commit ourselves to God, He will work in His timing and His ways  (Psalm 37:5) As the bride of Christ, we are invited into an intimate relationship with God which requires intentionality The more time you spend with God, the more you begin to hear and understand Him God speaks to us in many different ways when we are actively listening Our responsibility is to seek God with all of our hearts; it is up to Him to speak to us how He desires Prayer is the baseline for understanding who God is and what He can do in and through us   Links from Show She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live She Prays: A 31-Day Journey to Confident Conversations with God Designed For Life Conference 2021 [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Debbie Lindell Website |Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Giant Summer Giveaway You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six episodes!! Each time you use the hashtag, you'll get another entry On September 1st, we'll search the hashtags and randomly draw a winner! Thanks for helping us spread the news!! Having a Mary Heart Video Bible Study available ONLINE!!! Designed to go with my best-selling book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, this 10-session study repackages the previous DVD Study teachings in a course format - but also includes a FREE study guide! Perfect for groups and individuals. Get 20% off by entering the following code: LIVINGROOM20  INDIVIDUAL STUDY If you're a Bible Study Leader, there's also a group discount...just enter code: HAHMLEADER20 GROUP STUDY Don't Miss an Episode... We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Debbie's interview?

Jul 7

1 hr 3 min

"You were made for life and life more abundantly!" Today's Best of The Living Room Summer Series features Susie Larson and her book, Fully Alive: Learning to Flourish Mind, Body and Spirit. Susie's personal story of  walking through years of chronic health issues and dealing with the residue of past pain resonated with me and many others. She shares important lessons God taught her about the connection between the body and the soul reminding us not to settle for less than Jesus came to give, an abundant life! BONUS - Don't miss your opportunity to win Susie's book bundled with books from all of the authors featured in The Best of the Living Room Summer Series plus a $75 Amazon Gift card! Find out how below. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show 1. Even Christians face hardships Jesus told us to expect trials in this life, but we get to choose how we will respond. For the believer, life on earth is as bad as it will ever get. What we tell our soul about who God is and our troubles will determine how we fare, not only through that trial, but on the other side of it. “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 2. You can rest in God's love Nothing heals our soul like God's love. Every time you are tempted to look down on yourself, practice saying "You love me, Lord!" Pick a memory of when you felt most alive. Buried in that memory is a sign of what God wants to restore. Place it before God and together, hand in hand, you can experience true life again. "This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." 1 John 4:10 3. Recognize Satan's lies and replace them with God's truth You can't outrun a lie. You've got to turn around and face it and put it under your feet. Don't run away when old traumas and hurts arise, but rather run to God. If the Lord brings things to the surface it means the Lord intends to heal it. "We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ" 2 Corinthians 10:5 4. Put your hope in God When God doesn't show up the way we thought, we can feel stuck and discouraged. The answer is to live with expectancy rather than expectation. Expectation is premeditated disappointment because we have a specific outcome in mind. Waiting is hard, but heroes are made in the waiting. "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope." Romans 15:13   Are you carrying hurt that continues to weigh you down? Are you feeling emotionally, physically and spiritually exhausted? Run to God today and begin your journey of wholeness by simply saying "Lord, heal my soul, make me whole!" You were made for life and life more abundantly. It is time for you to fully live! Links from Show Fully Alive: Learning to Flourish Mind, Body and Spirit Fully Alive DVD Study Guide Susie's Facebook Live on "Expectation versus Expectancy" Your Powerful Prayers: Reaching the Heart of God with a Bold and Humble Faith The Uncommon Woman: Making an Ordinary Life Extraordinary [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.] Connect with Susie Larson Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Giant Summer Giveaway You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six ep...

Jun 23

44 min

You are deeply loved and desired by God!  This summer, we're going to revisit some of The Living Room's most popular episodes. But I thought we'd start off with a solo show I did on "Finding Intimacy with God in the Busyness of Life" to give you a peak at the heart behind the podcast and announce some very good news! Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Video Bible Study is now available ONLINE!!! Designed to go with my best-selling book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, this 10-session study repackages the previous DVD Study teachings in a course format - but also includes a FREE study guide! Perfect for groups and individuals. Get 20% off by entering the following code: LIVINGROOM20  INDIVIDUAL STUDY If you're a Bible Study Leader, there's also a group discount...just enter code: HAHMLEADER20 GROUP STUDY Now on to the show...(and the BIG SUMMER GIVEAWAY!) { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } We'll be discussing... Sin may have ended the Garden of Eden, but it did not end our relationship with God. Jesus didn't just wait for people to come to Him, He came to us! Friendship with God is not about what we DO; it is all about what He’s already DONE! Intimacy with God is not something OUTSIDE of us, it’s God living WITHIN us! We don’t have to EARN His favor – He’s already EXTENDED His favor. Acknowledge the presence of God. He is with you, He is for you and He is at work! Invite God to take the throne. We will never truly know God until we truly surrender our lives to Him. Enjoy a living conversation with the Lord by talking to Him all throughout the day. We will never truly know God until we truly surrender our lives to Him. - Joanna Weaver, TLR Episode 007Click To Tweet Links from Show Having a Mary Heart in a Marth World  Practicing the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World Sample Chapter Blog: The Day Love Was Born Blog: Spiritual Mountain-Climbing 101 [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Giant Summer Giveaway You could win copies of all the books featured this summer - PLUS a $75 AMAZON GIFT CARD!! Here's how you do it... Listen to every episode - TLR 061 to TLR 066  Write down the secret hashtag mentioned at the end of the show - for example: #TLRgiveaway Share the episode on social media using its individual hashtag - get bonus points if you share ALL six episodes!! Each time you use the hashtag, you'll get another entry On September 1st, we'll search the hashtags and randomly draw a winner! Thanks for helping us spread the news!! Don't Miss an Episode... We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What has helped you to cultivate intimacy with God?

Jun 9

23 min 10 sec

"The Holy Spirit makes the grace and love of Jesus real to us!"  In this episode, Jeannie Cunnion shares from her newest book, Don't Miss Out: Daring to Believe Life Is Better with the Holy Spirit. Having already served Jesus for 40 years, Jeannie realized that she had been missing out on all that the Holy Spirit was intended to do in her life. While Scripture teaches that God gives us the Holy Spirit to help us the moment we put our trust in Jesus, many of us still try to live our Christian lives in our own strength. As Jeannie's desire for more of God grew, so did her awareness of the powerful work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit invites each one of us into a beautiful intimacy with Him and longs to empower us to live out God's purposes for our lives. For all of you moms who long to help your children to love and live for Jesus, there is a special part in this episode that will speak right to your heart! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The Christian life is fueled by the power of the Holy Spirit The Holy Spirit is not just for the gifts of the Spirit or Fruit of the Spirit We can welcome the Holy Spirit's presence and power into our lives on a daily basis Jesus relied on the power of the Holy Spirit and told His disciples they needed to wait for the Holy Spirit (John 14-16) The Bible refers to the Holy Spirit as our intercessor, comforter, helper, champion, counselor, and strengthener If we try to live the Christian life without the Holy Spirit we will limit how far and deep we will go The Holy Spirit makes the grace and love of Jesus real to us Grace is the power and the desire to do God's will (Philippians 2:13) The Holy Spirit convicts us of sin, which opens our eyes to our need of a savior, and assures us of the righteous standing we have in Christ (John 16:8) He is working even when we are not aware of it The Holy Spirit transforms us - when we abide in the Spirit, His fruit becomes more evident in our lives (John 15) "His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness." (2 Peter 1:13) When we learn how to commune with the Holy Spirit, He invites us to be a part of a sacred intimacy with the entire Trinity When we feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit, we have the choose to yield God's Word instructs us how to set our minds on the Holy Spirit (Galatians 1-5) The Holy Spirit speaks as an advocate whereas the enemy speaks as an accuser We cannot fill the role of the Holy Spirit in our children's lives When we walk in the Spirit we can plant seeds into our children's lives, but only He can make them grow "I've discovered it's not how intensely I struggle but how completely I surrender" ~ Ken Gire But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby) will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him (the Holy Spirit) to you [to be in close fellowship with you]. ~ John 16:7 AMP Links from Show NEW BOOK: Don't Miss Out: Daring to Believe Life Is Better with the Holy Spirit Don't Miss out: Book Club Kit 5 Reflections on the Holy Spirit  NEW BIBLE STUDY (Releasing December 2021): Never Alone - Bible Study Book: Parenting in the Power of the Holy Spirit BOOK: Parenting the Wholehearted Child: Captivating Your Child's Heart with God's Extravagant Grace BOOK: Mom Set Free: Find Relief from the Pressure to Get It All Right [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Jeannie Cunnion Website |  Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list,

May 26

51 min 15 sec

 “You don't need a new list of things to do, you need a new way to see!” Do you feel overwhelmed by endless responsibilities and expectations? In this episode, Kendra Adachi, shares tips for from her book, The Lazy Genius Way: Embrace What Matters, Ditch What Doesn't, and Get Stuff Done. Weary from trying to be perfect and please everyone around her, Kendra realized that being all things to all people is not a sustainable way to live.  She discovered that experiencing a meaningful life is not about doing more or doing less, but doing what matters most to her. If you are tired of trying to measure up, this is your invitation to rest in God and seek His will for your life, releasing all of the guilt and expectations that were never meant for you! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The Lazy Genius Way is choosing to be a genius about the things that matter most and allowing yourself to be lazy about the rest We cannot be everything to everyone without facing exhaustion No one else can decide what matters most for your life What matters most to us can change in different seasons Train yourself to ask: "what matters most in this situation?" Trying to meet endless expectations or create a certain image causes us to miss true life You do not have to be perfect or good at everything It's ok to let some things go Magic question: "What can I do now to make life easier later?" Not every area of your life deserves equal priority Redefine what it means to be vulnerable and real (you don't have to be a mess to be real) Not every approach or system works for every person; the key is to discover what works for you Being different than others should be normal We are always in a learning process and it is ok to make mistakes Take everything to your gracious Heavenly Father who wants to help you discern what is most important Admit when you mess up, receive forgiveness and let go of the guilt Top Tips for Living The Lazy Genius Way Decide Once - Limit your decision making by making certain choices once and then never again (e.g. Monday uniform, kid's birthday gifts) Start Small - Don't get overwhelmed by trying to do everything, instead pick one thing to do Live in Your Season - Release the guilt from not doing things that are not meant for this season Schedule Rest - Discover what makes you feel like yourself, and find ways to experience those things on a regular basis Be Kind to Yourself - You are your own friend   Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. Matthew 11:28-30 Links from Show BOOK: The Lazy Genius Way: Embrace What Matters, Ditch What Doesn't, and Get Stuff Done The Lazy Genius Podcast [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Kendra Adachi Website | Instagram| Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Don't Miss an Episode! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Kendra's interview?

May 19

55 min 54 sec

  “Conflict is normal. There is no relationship without conflict or tension!” Are you tired of losing relationships over disagreements? In this episode, Ashley Abercrombie, shares powerful truths from her upcoming book, Love Is the Resistance: Learn to Disagree, Resolve the Conflicts You've Been Avoiding, and Create Real Change. In a world that is growing increasingly divided, Ashley encourages us to lead change and love others well by learning to engage in healthy conflict. When done right, conflict has the potential to grow love instead of tear it down. God has given His church the ministry of reconciliation. It is time to set aside our need to be right and choose to lead in love and live out the Word of God. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We don't have to make someone who disagrees with us into our villain Differing opinions do not need to cost us relationships We need differing opinions Every person is made in the image of God and can teach us something about Him "Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand." (Philippians 4:5) Christianity is not meant to be comfortable; God calls us to crucify ourselves daily (Luke 9:23) If we want to live Biblically, we must learn to think Biblically "If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other." (Galatians 5:15 Paul addresses disputable matters in Romans 14 because the people of God will not always see things the same Our judgment can cause others to fall, when God wants to help them stand (Romans 14) When we start pointing our finger at someone else, we have stopped loving People will know that we are followers of Jesus by our love, our unity and our fruit (John 13-17) Things grow when there is diversity (e.g. poly cropping) Follow the example of Jesus - A part from Him, the disciples would not have naturally chosen to walk or eat a meal together Unity is not assimilation or uniformity; it is joining together in love through Christ "Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification." Romans 14:19  Seek to understand one another so that you can love each other better We are called to build bridges - if our opinions are not filtered through love they will never bridge someone over to the love of Christ. (1 Peter 2:9) We have been given the ministry of reconciliation (reconciling people to God, ourselves and others) Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. Hebrews 12:14 Links from Show NEW BOOK (Releases August 2021, Pre-order now): Love Is the Resistance: Learn to Disagree, Resolve the Conflicts You've Been Avoiding, and Create Real Change Why Tho Podcast  The Biggest Little Farm PREVIOUS EPISODE: 029: Rise of the Truth Teller with Ashley Abercrombie | The Living Room BOOK: Rise of the Truth Teller: Own Your Story, Tell it Like it is, and Live with Holy Gumption [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Ashley Abercrombie Website | Instagram| Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God Speak" on Facebook,

May 5

47 min 7 sec

 “You don't need to 'move on' and 'get over it', but you can move forward in Christ!” Are you walking through a season of deep grief or loss? In this episode, author, ministry leader and my dear friend, Rachel Wojo, shares from her personal grief journey. Rachel's first child, Taylor, suffered from a rare metabolic disorder causing gradual neurological degeneration for many years and went to be with Jesus in 2019. Rachel learned to rely on the sustaining power of Jesus as she walked through the intense heartache beside her daughter for all those years as well as the sorrow of her loss. She is the first to admit it hasn't been easy and hasn't always looked pretty, but God has been faithful. Rachel's testimony is a reminder that our deepest grief and sorrow can actually be the window to discovering God's deepest love! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Grief may not get easier with time, but you can grow stronger in the Lord in dealing with it You can walk and grow through anything with Christ (Philippians 4:13) Increasing your physical activity helps your mind and body during grief Recite the Bible verses you know and allow others to speak God's Word over you Stay connected to your community throughout your grieving process The first step out the door can be the hardest; pray through it There is not always a linear progression to grief, it can be very unpredictable The rollercoaster of emotions we experience in grief is a call to Jesus You don't need to have yourself all put together before turning to Jesus God understands your grief, who you are and every emotion you are experiencing There is a beautiful joy paired with the deepest sorrow God is right beside us in the midst of our pain and suffering God captures every tear and takes note of the weight and depth of our suffering (Psalm 56:8) Even though He knew Lazarus would be resurrected, Jesus wept beside Mary and Martha  (John 11) You don't need to have words to minister to someone, your presence and embrace can speak even louder We should not compare grief because no loss is the same Empathize with someone else by admitting "I can't imagine what you are going through" God invites us to pour out our hearts to Him (Psalm 62:8) We have hope in the midst of our grieving (1 Thessalonians 4:13) God wants to use what the enemy means for evil and use it for good God can do miracles of the heart in you and through you All the strength, endurance and joy you need is found in Christ (Colossians 1:11-14 NLT) Trust in him at all times, you people;     pour out your hearts to him,     for God is our refuge. Psalm 62:8 Links from Show Letters to Taylor One More Step: Finding Strength When You Feel Like Giving Up Rachel's Shop [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Rachel Wojo Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Don't Miss an Episode! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Rachel's interview?

Apr 14

54 min 27 sec

“Start small, but begin!" Do you wish you understood the Bible better? In this episode, Kristy Cambron, shares powerful tools and resources that have brought the Word of God alive to her and many others from her Verse Mapping Series. Kristy is a vintage-inspired storyteller, writing both award-winning historical fiction and Bible Studies. When she recognized her own tendency to choose other things before spending time in the Word, Kristy embarked on a personal journey to understand it better. She discovered the personal and life-changing truths God had woven throughout His story and her desire to know Him only grew! God wants to speak to you too, my friend! His Word is rich and powerful and applies to every moment of our lives today. He wrote it with you in mind. It is not beyond your grasp. With a few simple steps, you can begin to understand God's Word and discover His good and perfect will for your life. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Begin with prayer and worship to invite God into your time Expect God to speak to you when you go to His Word Invite the Holy Spirit to reveal what is most important for you in that moment (Ephesians 1:17) Our spiritual vocabulary expands as we study God's Word Verse mapping records your journey with the Lord Never be afraid to admit when you don't understand something and ask for help When you understand a story within the lens it was created, you can apply it accurately to your life today Verse mapping can retrain your mind to understand Scripture better Your study, worship and relationship with God is going to look unique to how God created you (Psalm 139) Don't be afraid to start small The goal is to walk away with one truth that you can put into practice Your craving for the Word of God will increase as you read it 5-Step Approach to Verse Mapping  Select your verse Design - Write verse in multiple translations Develop context - Research root meaning of words Actions - Discover the story around the verse Outcome - Identify what the Holy Spirit taught you and how you plan to use it Open my eyes that I may see     wonderful things in your law. Psalm 119:18 Links from Show NIV Verse Mapping Bible Verse Mapping Bible Study Journal Verse Mapping Luke: Gathering the Goodness of God’s Word Verse Mapping Acts: Feasting on the Abundance of God’s Word The Paris Dressmaker [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Kristy Cambron Website | Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God Speak" on Facebook, you can still use the Bible Reading Journal. God longs to speak to us and I know He will meet you as you open His Word. [To learn more about how the plan works, read "Get More Out of the Bible by Reading Less (Really!)"]   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Kristy's interview?

Mar 31

43 min 41 sec

“If we will release our plans into God's hands, He will do far greater than we can imagine!" In this episode, Rachel Dodge, shares her journey of learning to trust God with all her dreams.  As an English professor, Rachel always had a desire to write, but she never imagined it would unfold the way it did. As she continued to seek God and trust His leading, she was amazed at how beautifully He wove together her upbringing, education, interests, and skills in ways she had never imagined possible. Combining her love for the Lord and literature, God led her write the devotionals, Praying with Jane: 31 Days through the Prayers of Jane Austen and The Anne of Green Gables Devotional: A Chapter-by-Chapter Companion for Kindred Spirits, which uniquely inspire and encourage women to go deeper with Him every day. God wants to write your story as well. He wants to reveal to you the underworking of His hand to bring purpose to your pain and every part of your journey. If you feel like God is stirring something new in your heart and don't know how to get from where you are to where you feel God wants you to be, this is for you. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Like Moses, God calls us to use whatever He has placed in our hands (Exodus 4) Keep doing the things you know God has placed in front of you each day God often wants to do something in us before He does something through us Deepen the message and let God broaden the ministry God will not take you to a place He hasn't already prepared for you and prepared you for God uses every season, especially our suffering, to teach us and mold us into His image You can be real with God because He already knows your heart Allow God to hedge you in with His love and protection and keep your eyes on Him God will lead you to the next step on His path and bring purpose to your entire journey Look for ways to walk beside other believers; God made us to need each other Trust the Holy Spirit to write your beautiful story and wait on Him with active faith I know that you can do all things,     and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. Job 42:2   Links from Show NEW DEVOTIONAL: The Anne of Green Gables Devotional: A Chapter-by-Chapter Companion for Kindred Spirits DEVOTIONAL: Praying with Jane: 31 Days through the Prayers of Jane Austen Mount Hermon Christian Writer's Conference  Children's Devotional/Booklet: Anne of Green Gables Devotional for Young Readers [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Rachel Dodge Website | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God Speak" on Facebook, you can still use the Bible Reading Journal. God longs to speak to us and I know He will meet you as you open His Word. [To learn more about how the plan works, read "Get More Out of the Bible by Reading Less (Really!)"] Don't Miss an Episode! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Rachel's interview?

Mar 17

46 min 1 sec

“Your story does not disqualify you!" Are you still clinging tightly to the broken pieces and shattered dreams in your life? There is good news, my friend! In this episode, Sharon Jaynes, shares from her newest book, "When You Don't Like Your Story: What If Your Worst Chapters Could Become Your Greatest Victories?" about the redemptive power of God. Sharon demonstrates how God can use the parts of our stories that we wish were erased to grow us and reveal Himself to us and the world around us. While we can never change the past, with God we can always redeem it! If you are still carrying the hurt of your past, this word is for you. The issues that have bound and held you for far too long are going to be broken as you release them into God's hands. Today is your day of deliverance! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Your story does not disqualify you The Bible is full of personal stories of redemption Like Rahab, God wants to turn our stories around and use them for good God doesn't comfort us just to make us comfortable, but so that we can comfort others (2 Corinthians 1:4)  Sharing our stories is a part of overcoming the enemy in our lives (Revelations 12:11) It is in the hard parts of our story that God meets us most Rather than say "why me?" we can ask God "what now?" We have to let go of the broken pieces we cling to and allow God to make something beautiful with it Healing starts with the decision that you want to be free and made well When we've embraced lies as our identity we have to renew our minds through the Word to tell a new story We often think it is easier to stay in disfunction than to be healed and move into the unknown When we refuse to believe what God says about ourselves over our own thoughts we bind and lock ourselves up We have to keep our story centered on Jesus and His power to redeem When we offer the difficult and weak places in our story to Jesus, He can use it in powerful ways Sometimes God will not talk to you about your future until you deal with your past The power of our past is broken when we open up and share our stories STEPS TO HEALING:  Choose healing - decide that you want to move beyond the hurt and pain toward healing Leave the pain place - forgive those who have hurt you Leave the shame place - receive God's forgiveness and forgive yourself Tell your story And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 Links from Show NEW BOOK: When You Don't Like Your Story: What If Your Worst Chapters Could Become Your Greatest Victories? Praying Wives Club  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Sharon Jaynes Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day [To learn more about how the plan works, read "Get More Out of the Bible by Reading Less (Really!)"]   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Sharon's interview?

Mar 3

49 min 8 sec

"If we really understood what Christ has to offer us when we surrender and trust Him, we would want it every day!"  Do you wake up weighed down from the pressure of all that needs to get done? In this episode, Christy Nockels shares from her book, The Life You Long For: Learning to Live From a Heart of Rest.  After years of traveling music ministry with her husband, Christy began to experience burnout in her life. She recognized her life had been marked by doing things for God rather than truly living from Him. In His perfect timing, God revealed her worth a part from her platform and extended His invitation to truly rest. He extends the same invitation to each of us - to live from a heart of rest! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show True rest comes from surrender and trust in Jesus Our deepest longings are met when we live from a place of surrender Our identity can easily get wrapped up in what we do The bulls-eye is our relationship with God and recognizing we are His beloved God calls us to community over capacity We have the opportunity to invite God's glorious presence and power into our mundane Anything we lay down, God fills and returns in far greater ways Surrender yourself to being built by Christ rather than trying to build something for Him (1 Peter 2:4-5) When we live from the bulls-eye, the outer rings of our life are reclaimed (Ephesians 2:10) When we make time to orient ourselves around Christ, we don't have to worry about being in God's will Our hustling can hold us back from all God wants to offer us True rest in Jesus propels us into action God has always given us permission to rest The capacity of the beloved is all about what we can hold and receive from the heart of God and allowing that to overflow to the world around us We can choose to trust God and live in His rest or run ahead (Isaiah 30:15) Commit your way to the Lord;     trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,     your vindication like the noonday sun. ~Psalm 37:5-6 Links from Show BOOK: The Life You Long For: Learning to Live From a Heart of Rest  PODCAST: The Glorious in the Mundane [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Christy Nockels Website |  Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Christy's interview?

Feb 17

50 min 59 sec

“God's Word can shine on the darkness in our hearts and our world today!" Wow, you guys! This episode is so timely. If you've wondered how God wants you to respond to the turmoil in our world, Mary DeMuth highlights our great need to pray and live biblically so that our responses are shaped by God and not human opinions. We talk about her personal journey and recent books, "Pray Every Day:90 Days of Prayer from God's Word" and "We Too: How the Church Can Respond Redemptively to the Sexual Abuse Crisis." In times of great turmoil, confusion, and conflicting ideas, Mary provides simple, yet powerful ways we can begin letting the truth of God's Word shine on our hearts, praying His will rather than our opinions, loving the marginalized, and disagreeing with others in healthy ways. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God doesn't ask us to tidy up our prayers. He invites us to pour out our hearts openly! Prayer is not transactional; instead it is always relational. God wants to be in close relationship with us when we are going through any stress or trauma. We've been given a great privilege to enter God's presence. It is not about us trying to perform Christianly; rather it's about us being discipled by Jesus. We don't always have to lead change. Sometimes God calls us to intercede for change. The overarching theme of the Bible shows God's redemptive story for each one of us. We have to know the Word of God to be able to think Biblically (Biblio-centric world view). Keeping our peace in the midst of turmoil requires we look to eternity and the promises of Jesus. Faith is often stretched and purified most in the midst of persecution. Look to God's Word to shine on the darkness so that His light can come. We can learn so much about God through loving and welcoming traumatized people. Loving people well requires more tables and less platforms! We can love each other even when we disagree by refusing to tie our words to our worth and needing to win. Kingdom bias looks at the brokenness of our world and asks God how to be a part of restoring it. If we only spend time with people who look like us and share our opinions, we are not representing the body of Christ. The Word of God calls us to lay down our lives, rather than fight for our rights.  If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14 Links from Show NEW BOOK: "Pray Every Day:90 Days of Prayer from God's Word" PODCAST: Pray Every Day Podcast  BOOK: We Too: How the Church Can Respond Redemptively to the Sexual Abuse Crisis  BIBLE STUDY: Into the Light: A Biblical Approach to Healing from the Past  21 Days to Healing Email  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Mary DeMuth Website |  Instagram | Twitter | Etsy Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God Speak" on Facebook, you can still use the Bible Reading Journal. God longs to speak to us and I know He will meet you as you open His Word. [To learn more about how the plan works, read "Get More Out of the Bible by Reading Less (Really!)"] Don't Miss an Episode!

Feb 3

43 min 8 sec

“Life shakes us up. Abiding settles us down!" In this episode, my friend and mentor, Jodi Detrick, shares from her new devotional, "The Settled Soul: Tenaciously Abiding with a Tender God". She shares powerful truths and practical steps for an abiding life amidst the chaos and challenges in life. Jesus invites each one of us to unpack our entire lives and fully reside with Him. No matter what is going on around us, we can live with peace and purpose by staying close to Jesus. Whether you are in a difficult pruning season, a quiet and seemingly dormant season or an abundant and fruitful season, settle in with Jesus. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Not only does Jesus abide in us, but we are invited to abide in Him Abiding literally means "home" - we are invited to unpack our entire lives and make ourselves at home with Jesus Abiding also means "remain" -  He asks us to stay attached and settle in Like a Gardener, God cares for the us, lifts us up, prunes us and knows exactly what we need The Father is a Gardener who is hands on and willing to get close even in the mess The Gardener is also a Father who tends us with a tender heart The father of the prodigal son shows us how God draws us to Himself and offers us all that He has (Luke 15:11-32) Discontentment and disappointment in ourselves often leads to feeling unsettled The God who never grows weary is not tired of you (Isaiah 40:28) The dormant seasons when we don't see movement are crucial to our growth Like vines in a vineyard, we depend on one another to grow Don't let your wounds decide your faith When you are wounded by life, you need the Life Giver Make peace with the unfinished - every plant starts out small and incomplete God is building a grand work of eternity in your life There is always new depth and more of Jesus to discover Keep showing up and tending your connection with Jesus As we tend the connection, fruit naturally grows Six Simple Practices of Abiding 1. Think about Jesus 2. Talk with Jesus 3. Talk about Jesus 4. Love Jesus and let Him love you 5. Trust Jesus and believe what He tells us 6. Engage meaningfully with others who love Jesus Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing... By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. ~ John 15:5,8-9   Links from Show DEVOTIONAL: "The Settled Soul: Tenaciously Abiding with a Tender God" PREVIOUS EPISODE: 008: The Jesus-Hearted Woman with Jodi Detrick | The Living Room BOOK: The Jesus-Hearted Woman: 10 Leadership Qualities for Enduring and Endearing Influence FREE PRINTABLE: Jesus Thought Prompts [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Jodi Detrick Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God Speak" on Facebook, you can still use the Bible Reading Journal. God longs to speak to us and I know He will me...

Jan 20

42 min 28 sec

"Jesus not only loved us first – He loves us first every day!" In this episode, my friend and best-selling author, Susie Larson, shares from her new devotional, Prevail: 365 Days of Enduring Strength from God's Word. During a health crisis, Susie determined to cling to God’s Promises, searching the Bible for evidences and any opportunities to learn from. She began to see her difficult journey as an invitation to follow the Lord on His terms, deciding that if He guides our way, He also gets the say. God's promise that the pure in heart will see Him became a reality for Susie. As she responded to God's loving and purifying work in her heart, she experienced His presence in a sweet and powerful way. God's invitation to you and me is the same. If you feel like you're just surviving, remember God loves you. Draw near to Him, give Him full access to your heart and you too will see how good He is! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We are tethered to a good, good God. Prevail means to prove more powerful than your opponent and to be the last one standing. Jesus won a sound victory over the enemy for us. We need to stand in it. The love of God changes us. "If you spend 15 minutes a day pondering how much God loves you, it will change your brain structure" ~ Dr. Tim Jennings Every moment, every hardship, every battle has eternal implications – our part in believing matters. Don’t lead by your feelings. Don’t contradict what God has said to you. Are there any “idols” in your tent? You can recognize them by the fruit it produces in your life. If you are guarding your idol to the point the “uglies” come out, you’ve got to be careful. The fastest growing churches are in countries that vehemently oppose Christianity. If you have to let go of love to hang onto your cause, you’ve lost your way. You can have as much of God as you want. You draw near and He draws near. He rewards those who diligently seek Him. You can have a right assessment and a wrong a spirit. If you are more angry about someone’s stance than you are concerned about their soul, you’ve got a wrong spirit. "Things are not falling apart; they are falling in place" ~ Anne Graham Lotz We are going to see moves of God we’ve only dreamed of – but God moves on the humble. So Lord, search us… God hasn’t given us a spirit of fear – you can’t walk in Kingdom power and walk in fear. (2 Timothy 1:7 NIV)  As people of God, we need to pursue community with people – actively reaching out to communicate value and love to people. Remind your soul that nothing is impossible with God. Your faith is so precious to Him. Lord, show us the gap that exists between what we do and what we truly believe, and then fill in those empty spaces with more of You. Awaken our heart and do the impossible in our lives. Links from Show PREVIOUS EPISODE: 001 Living Fully Alive with Susie Larson | The Living Room  NEW DEVOTIONAL: Prevail: 365 Days of Enduring Strength from God's Word BOOK: Fully Alive: Learning to Flourish Mind, Body and Spirit SUSIE'S PODCAST: Faith Radio Faith Radio Interview with Dr. Tim Jennings [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Susie Larson Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Subscribe & Get a Bible Reading Journal! You can get your free "2021 Word of God Speak” Journal by signing up in the form below. The Bible reading journal features: Instructions for using the journal - including tips for getting the most out of your Bible reading Daily assignment schedule - one chapter a day Space to record your Bible reading highlights Bonus: "Pray Every Day" pages to help you focus on a different part of your life each day Hope You'll Join Us... Whether or not you take part in "2021 Word of God...

Jan 6

50 min 27 sec

"The more we seek after Christ, the more we find peace and rest!"  Are you tired of striving and trying to be everything to everyone? In this episode, my friend, Kelly Balarie, shares from her newest book, Rest Now: 7 Ways to Say No, Set Boundaries, and Seize Joy. Kelly gives simple ways we can begin connecting with the heart of God and enjoy an abiding life in Christ on a daily basis. In a season of emotional and cultural unrest, Jesus longs to offer us His rest and joy. Rather than living led by obligations we have an opportunity to activate spirit-led rest.   { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God created us with responsibilities, but we were not created to strive You don't have to work hard to prove who you are When you fully discover who you are in Christ and how loved you are by Him, you are free to live and love like Jesus Rest is the recovery and healing of self through the Biblical truths of Christ The more we follow Christ, the more we find peace and rest Admitting our weaknesses creates room for God's strength to come in “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule." (Matthew 5:3 MSG) Connecting with others in authentic ways can bring true rest Boundaries should create a reserve of love so that you can better observe the call to love Jesus wants to walk beside us in everything and show us what to do Our call is to connect with Jesus and cultivate Holy-Spirit awareness Jesus did not feel obligated to do everything; He didn't heal every sick person or answer every question Take inventory of your plans for each day and ask God what He really wants you to accomplish Never hesitate to reach out and ask for help "There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience." (Hebrews 4:9-11 NIV)  Jesus wants to fill us with joy in our rest (Luke 10:21; John 15:11) Set things down and step away to connect with Jesus True rest requires trusting God Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. Matthew 11:28-30 Links from Show BOOK: Rest Now: 7 Ways to Say No, Set Boundaries, and Seize Joy Rest Now Resources PREVIOUS PODCAST: 009: Getting Battle Ready with Kelly Balarie | The Living Room [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Kelly Balarie Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Kelly's interview?

Dec 2020

45 min 29 sec

“As Christians we are all called to ministry and all parts of our lives are a part of that calling!” In this episode, Kadi Cole shares from her bestselling book, Developing Female Leaders: Navigate the Minefields and Release the Potential of Women in Your Church.  Having only seen women in one role in church ministry, Kadi sought God's will for her own life and discovered her unique gifts and calling did not fit the expected mold. She has since committed her life to helping others discover and walk in their gifts. God has given the Church so many resources and gifts through its people. It is our job to recognize, equip and release each one to fulfill her irreplaceable role. Extra Bonus: My daughter, Jessica Downs, joins our conversation and shares about her personal journey and calling while serving as a children's pastor and a new mom. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Each person brings unique resources and gifts to the Church We should challenge all of our assumptions and paradigms with God's Word As a leader, we need to connect with a lot of different people to challenge our own biases Scripture does not reflect gender bias in gifting Everyone in Scripture is for everyone; we can identify with male or female characters based on similar experience or gifting As culture continually shifts, women often feel like they are not enough or too much Understand your top spiritual gifts and focus on your role alone Stewarding what God has given us is a part of our sanctification We are called to advocate for others (i.e. the marginalized or oppressed), and to trust God to be our defender We need to be both honest and honoring about ourselves and others Self-awareness is the ability to understand what is going on inside of you and how it is affecting other people "A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of." Luke 6:45 We cannot avoid hurt or offense; we need the Holy Spirit to help us restore relationships towards true unity Addressing hurts and conflict should come out of a place of healing through the Holy Spirit and be motivated by love rather than revenge Restoration requires: confrontation, healing, and reunited fellowship Restoration happens when we are both honest and honoring about ourselves and others The Church misses complete reconciliation and unity when we leave any section of the body of Christ out Perfectionism is one of the main temptations Satan uses to hold women back My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. John 17: 20-23 Links from Show  Developing Female Leaders: Navigate the Minefields and Release the Potential of Women in Your Church  Kadi's Leadership Support Group: Ministry Chick Joanna's Leader Access Pass   [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Kadi Cole Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Kadi's interview?

Dec 2020

1 hr 10 min

“Real ministry is not the big mission we go out to accomplish, but the person right in front of us!” In this episode, New York Times Best-Selling author and speaker, Karen Ehman, shares from her newest book, Reach Out, Gather In: 40 Days to Opening Your Heart and Home, about seeing beyond ourselves to the needs of others. We can too easily become consumed by our own lives and personal needs that we overlook others and miss the opportunities around us. While some people may be more naturally gifted at hospitality, God calls us all to reach out and notice others, especially the ones who least expect to be seen. Karen challenges all believers to choose a life of welcome, opening our homes when possible and our hearts always. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show "If your circumstances have you down, go find someone who has it worse than you and make their day. Somehow it will make your day as well!" ~ Karen's mom You can be hospitable wherever you're at; there are always people who long to be welcomed in Become a person who is always on the lookout for the marginalized and lonely Hospitality is less about impressing or entertaining people with your home and more about refreshing and loving the people God brings into your life People will never forget how you make them feel Start small by intentionally taking time to truly listen and connect with someone Soul sharing: caring for that deepest part of another human being Listen between the lines for heart drops (when someone says something without saying it) Reaching out and gathering in is a great way to point people to Jesus "[God] comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God" ~ 2 Corinthians 1:4 Look at your natural talents, passions and spiritual gifts for ways God wants to use you to reach others Start by showing love and hospitality to your own family Go find your old self - someone who is going through what you've been through Choose not to compare or judge We tend to hold back in fear of being judged when we ourselves have a propensity to judge others Your unique gifting is needed Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Romans 12:13 Links from Show NEW BOOK: Reach Out, Gather In: 40 Days to Opening Your Heart and Home Proverbs 31 Ministries BOOK: Keep It Shut: What to Say, How to Say It, and When to Say Nothing at All Thanksgiving Printable BLOG: The Art of Gratitude with Rachel Wojo [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Karen Ehman Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Karen's interview?

Nov 2020

43 min 37 sec

“You are perfectly designed for God's unique purposes for your life!” In this episode, Holley Gerth shares from her newest book,  The Powerful Purpose of Introverts: Why the World Needs You to Be You. While common stereotypes often make introverts feel like they are not enough, the truth is that God wired each of us diversely on purpose. The good news is that being introverted or extroverted does not make one better at leading or loving people, they just do it differently. So rather than living in comparison, insecurity or fear, Holley encourages us to fully embrace who God created us to be. To my introverted friend, hear this: there are specific God-given strengths within you that our world needs more than ever before! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The brain and nervous systems of introverts are wired completely different than extroverts Extroverts are wired to look for ways to get more dopamine which is often found in large groups of people, whereas introverts have a more stable dopamine level within themselves already "Half the population is made up of introverts" - Myers Briggs Foundation Introverts will often become passionate about a specific cause and step up in a way that appears more extroverted Introverts and extroverts can love people equally, they just do it in different ways Both can make great leaders; many successful leaders are introverts We may appear more or less introverted in certain seasons or roles, but our initial wiring doesn't change Research shows that we all become more introverted as we age Understanding who God made us to be should lead us to praise rather than pride or insecurity Self-awareness can help us to understand and appreciate others better also To better understand someone, you can ask "how can I love you well right now?" Introverts do well with structure and fulfilling a specific given role Some people are designed to be highly visible and lead out front while others are designed to lead from behind and quietly champion people or projects Introverts can provide a calming presence in the midst of chaos Extroverts can help energize and inspire introverts We are exactly what God wants us to be right now and He loves us just as we are The goal is always progress, not perfection Trust God to complete the good work He started in you (Philippians 1:6) COMMON QUALITIES OF AN INTROVERT: Prefer to work in quieter, more independent environments Highly observant  and often notice what others miss Have a capacity and a need for solitude Take time before making decisions or responding I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;     your works are wonderful,     I know that full well. ~ Psalm 139:14 Links from Show BOOK: The Powerful Purpose of Introverts: Why the World Needs You to Be You PREVIOUS EPISODE: 011: Hope Your Heart Needs with Holly Gerth | The Living Room QUIZ: What percent introvert are you? PODCAST:More Than Small Talk [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Holley Gerth  Website | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Holley's interview?

Nov 2020

41 min 41 sec

“God is calling the women of this generation to partner with Him in bringing about His purposes!” In this episode, Alli Worthington shares from her book, Standing Strong: A Woman's Guide to Overcoming Adversity and Living with Confidence, about partnering with God in accomplishing His purposes.  Through her own journey of learning to hear God's voice and experiencing the pain of disobedience as well as the joy of following His leading, Alli has learned to trust God in the unknown and step out in obedience and faith. Do you hear God's whisper? God is calling you to stand strong because you are meant for more, my friend! It's not about the kind of work He calls you to or how impressive or small it may seem, because whatever He calls us to is Kingdom work. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God partners with people through all different kinds work to accomplish His purposes on this Earth Noah partnered with God by doing the hard work of building the ark for 100 years Our life's grand purpose is to respond to Jesus' invitation of salvation and tell others about Him Our calling looks different in different seasons as we continually ask God to show us His desires for our life Mother's prayer: "May she grow to be a great woman of God, fearless in her faith and strong as she faces her future." We stand in our way when we give in to self-doubt and adversity Don't be afraid to act on God's nudges and trust Him to get your attention if you are going down the wrong path Confidence is a skill that is built up overtime God will give you the strength to do whatever He is asking of you Correction from the Lord is direction, not rejection We need to stop telling God what we cannot do and why we are not good enough or we will miss out on partnering with Him in His Kingdom work Don't use humility as a cover for disobedience Jesus wants to fill us with His Spirit, His power and His very nature in order to accomplish His purposes 5-Second Secret - Bring God into every equation and speak His truth, then countdown from five and act LEARNING TO HEAR GOD'S VOICE: Invite God to speak and spend time seeking Him Give God space and time to speak to you on a regular basis Allow godly influences to speak into your life Respond in obedience when you hear Him speak For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7   Links from Show Alli's Book: Standing Strong: A Woman's Guide to Overcoming Adversity and Living with Confidence Podcast: Alli Worthing Show Business Coaching: Called Creatives Life Without Lack: Living in the Fullness of Psalm 23 by Dallas Willard  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Alli Worthington Website |Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Alli's interview?

Oct 2020

53 min 16 sec

"No marriage is easy or perfect, but every marriage is worth fighting for!” In this episode, Lara Casey, the CEO of Cultivate What Happens, shares her personal marriage journey. Lara and her Jewish, military husband struggled for many years before God not only answered her prayer for a shared faith, but overtime He also healed the pain from all the earlier hurt and rekindled their love for each other. When it seemed easier to give up, Lara relied on her faith and pressed in deeper to God. He used Lara as well as a matrix of relationships and the power of His Word to lead her husband into a relationship with Him. I also share the story of God's healing in my marriage. If you are struggling in your marriage or are married to an unbeliever, God wants to encourage you today! It was when Lara and I came to the end of ourselves that God was able to create a beautiful masterpiece out of all of the broken pieces. He can do that for you too! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show There is no such thing as an easy or perfect marriage Every time an argument arises choose to pray first When we recognize how much God has forgiven us, we can easier forgive our spouse Don't allow someone else's lack of faith to hold you back from practicing your faith Any exposure to Scripture is powerful (Isaiah 55:11) You don't have to lure others to faith or pretend your life is perfect, but rather live out your real faith in front of them "What if God's primary intent for your marriage isn't to make you happy . . . but holy?" ~ Gary Thomas Sacred Marriage The time between your hurt and your miracle is an opportunity to practice faith Seek God rather than a perfect marriage and trust Him with the outcome Our purity and reverence for God and our respect and love for our spouse can draw our spouse to God (1 Peter 3:1) Rather than resent an unbelieving spouse, ask God to change your heart so you can present the sweetness of Christ Humility is one of the strongest displays of Christ to others You cannot change your spouse's heart, only God can Spend time with Christ and allow His aroma to spread to your spouse Trials are what ground your faith and strengthen your words A "gentle and quiet spirit" is one that is free from fear (1 Peter 3:4) Renew your commitment to your marriage (no matter what!) Get a big-picture mindset and commit to a long-term marriage Don't lose sight of the temporary nature of struggles and the powerful hand of God to change things in His timing Submit your heart to God and ask Him to give you a new love for your spouse Anchor your relationship by praying together often Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. ~ 1 Peter 3:1 Links from Show Previous Episode: 006: Cultivate What Matters with Lara Casey | The Living Room Book: Cultivate: A Grace-Filled Guide to Growing an Intentional Life Book: Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live On Purpose Book: Sacred Marriage: What If God Designed Marriage to Make Us Holy More Than to Make Us Happy? Podcast: Cultivate Your Life Podcast Cultivate What Matters PowerSheets  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Lara Casey Website | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email...

Oct 2020

53 min 8 sec

“God is either everything or nothing!” Have you ever felt torn between loving Jesus and loving yourself, wanting to live for Him but still doing things your own way? In this episode, Lisa Whittle shares from her newest book, Jesus Over Everything: Uncomplicating the Daily Struggle to Put Jesus First about her personal struggle to daily keep Jesus number one and how He changed her perspective. We all have different distractions and things we run to in difficult times, but Jesus wants to deliver us from it all. It is not until we relinquish our right to live our own way that we truly discover freedom and the life we were created to live. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Deadly Overs: Our go-to behaviors that we think simplify our lives, but instead complicate things by making it all about us Over-apologizing, over-explaining, over-indulging, and over-working are all examples of "deadly overs" that stand in the way of getting closer to Jesus When we put Jesus over everything truly uncomplicates our lives We will never be satisfied until Jesus is in His rightful place Connecting with God through striving doesn't work Evaluate if there is anything you are doing on a habitual level to escape from life and give it to Jesus When God puts His finger on an area in your life, He will also give you the strength and grace to deal with it Holiness over freedom - when we do not keep the guard rails of Scripture on our freedoms we begin to enslave ourselves, but in Christ we can experience true freedom Jesus guides us into holiness because He knew that on the other side is pain and enslavement "I run in the path of your commands for you have set my heart free" ~ Psalm 119:32 “Everything is permissible,” but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible,” but not everything builds up. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:23  Whatever you are resisting letting go of the hardest is what you may need to relinquish to Jesus True holiness leads to wholeness and everything God created us for You will never regret giving more to Jesus For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. (Colossians 1:16-18) Links from Show PODCAST: Jesus Over Everything BOOK: Jesus Over Everything: Uncomplicating the Daily Struggle to Put Jesus First FREE QUIZ: Deadly-Overs Quiz [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Lisa Whittle Website |Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Lisa's interview?

Sep 2020

44 min 34 sec

“You can survive anything if you'll redefine everything...” Life rarely turns out the way we expect and it's not always easy to adjust when suffering redirects it all. In this episode, Katherine Wolf, discusses her newest book, Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. At age 26, Katherine suffered a massive brain stem stroke that nearly ended her life. During the long years of surgeries and relearning all basic life skills, Katherine and her husband, Jay, learned that God's grace is truly sufficient. As you look to Him, God will give you unexpected peace and even joy in the middle of your deepest trial. Maybe your life has taken an unexpected turn as well. God wants to help you pivot, persevere and overcome so that you can truly live the life you've been given! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Rather than holding on to what was, learn to embrace the new Suffering can become a treasured gift that shapes your life in positive ways Nothing can take away the peace, joy and all good things found in Christ (Psalm 84:11) "Joy is the secret weapon of the Christian life" - GK Chesterton We get to take our worries to the foot of the cross rather than live with them Until we surrender our unmet expectations, we cannot receive the gifts that God has for us Walking through suffering with joy and perseverance can be one of the greatest testimonies Decide what voices you will allow to speak into your life (who will be your "soul board of directors"?) Live with gratitude and seek to recognize the good in every situation Determine to establish your hope in the Lord True hope is a future promise lived out now "Hope is believing in advance what will only make sense in reverse" ~ Philip Yancey What is true about God in the light is still true in your darkest moments Receiving suffering can be a big part of living a life worthy of your calling (Ephesians 4:1) The greatest things that God has done are inside of you (2 Corinthians 4:17) God is always doing something new When someone else is suffering, less words can be the best words When one person suffers in a marriage, both truly suffer A great marriage establishes true friendship and chooses to cheer one another on God has given us everything we need to adapt, persevere and overcome (2 Peter 1:3) Stop marinating in what you thought your life would look like and accept what your Good Father has allowed Always trust that God is good and remember that He is able to redeem all things True beauty is all about walking away from shame and discovering God's voice Not only so, but we 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. ~Romans 5:3-5 Links from Show Hope Heals: A True Story of Overwhelming Loss and an Overcoming Love Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Katherine Wolf Website |Instagram | Facebook | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Katherine's interview?

Sep 2020

50 min 5 sec

“If we allow our dreams to drive us, then we may miss where God is leading us!” In this episode, Tracey Mitchell shares from her book, Becoming Brave: How to Think Big, Dream Wildly, and Live Fear-Free. God has dreams and purposes for every one of our lives, not one more significant than another. He gifts us with unique skills and opportunities to make a difference, but His greatest purpose is always to draw us closer to Him. Tracey shares the joy of walking closely to her Savior and trusting Him to reroute her life when needed, to bring purpose in her trials, and to give her the bravery to stay faithful in her daily life as much as in the big moments. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show God wants to make us brave no matter what we're facing Almost all prophetic children in the Bible came from barren wombs - John the Baptist, Samuel, Samson It was not that God was withholding something from each woman. He was reserving something that was larger than what she could imagine for an appointed season We have to learn how to be fruitful in what seems to be unfruitful seasons What's in you will always come out in a moment of stress When we're in the fire, we need to remind ourselves that everything we've believed is true and tell others of God's goodness In times like our current situation, we need to let God teach us how to navigate a new "operating system" Thinking big can mean trying something new or just taking a simple step of obedience to God's voice We don't bring our dreams to God and ask Him to bless them, we allow heaven to send God's dream for us Sometimes we are afraid to dream because of risk - fear of being disappointed Don't let fear override the plan and purpose of God for your life Believe God for more - but trust Him with the results Joseph was willing to serve someone else's dream - we need to do the same Just because my dream isn't coming true today doesn't mean it will never happen - it may be someone else's day Quote: "I never doubted my ability to make things happen, but I never weighed out the cost to my joy" Make sure the end result measures up and mirrors the purpose - was God glorified or was it all about us? Tracey's Prayer: "Flay me open, Lord, and show me my motives" When our motives are right before the Lord, we will experience joy. When we don't we'll be exhausted Invite spiritual mentors to keep you accountable: Why are you doing this? What's the purpose behind it? In this increasingly divided culture, we need to be gracious, reasonable women Whenever I feel the need to insert my opinion in every subject, I'm probably walking in pride - Joanna Lord, help us be brave and humble. Submitted to God and willing to dream His dreams I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted. ~ Job 42:2   Links from Show Book: Becoming Brave: How to Think Big, Dream Wildly, and Live Fear-Free Book: Downside Up: Transform Rejection into Your Golden Opportunity Tracey's newest book: The Invitation to Intimacy with God [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Tracey Mitchell Website |Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Tracey's interview?

Aug 2020

48 min 45 sec

“Where does your allegiance lie?” In this episode, pastor's wife and author, Christine Hoover, shares from her newest book, With All Your Heart: Living Joyfully Through Allegiance to King Jesus. After a difficult season of feeling grieved and starved for validation, God did a deep work in Christine's heart. She began to recognize false allegiances that were keeping her from experiencing the peace and joy of living with a whole-hearted devotion to Christ. It can be so easy to get caught up in self-reliance or seeking the approval of people and neglect our call to "seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness" (Matthew 6:33). But only Jesus deserves our allegiance and He alone satisfies! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The Kingdom of God is past, present and future Jesus came and established the Kingdom of God The Church is presently the Kingdom of God We look forward with anticipation to the Kingdom of God that is to come The primary allegiance that pulls us away from Christ is self We have an internal war with our flesh that tempts us to rely only on ourselves "There is a throne in every kingdom of our heart" - Ray Stedman We have to identify the false kings in our lives (anxiety, approval, comfort, etc..) When there is bad fruit being produced in your life, trace it back to a false allegiance When you recognize a false allegiance, repent and turn to Jesus Our false allegiances affect others negatively as well God will allow things to be shaken to reveal our weak places and give us the unshakable Kingdom of God Until we determine that Christ is Lord of all, everything can be shaken King Escape is the ruler of this modern age Rather than escape into distraction, allow God the space to speak "Loneliness is sometimes God's call to aloneness with us" Jeanne Mayo Kingdom work is bringing our hearts under the rule and reign of Jesus Rather than striving to do everything, take some time to wait and hear what God wants "They also serve, who only stand and wait" - John Milton The Kingdom of God is a corporate kingdom and is meant to be done together Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind. ~ Luke 10:27   Links from Show By Faith Podcast With All Your Heart: Living Joyfully Through Allegiance to King Jesus [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Christine Hoover Website |Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Be Still Devotional Journal During troubled times like these, we all need God's peace... I pray that this 7-day devotional helps you lay down fear and trust God more. Featuring excerpts from At the Feet of Jesus, each entry takes you to Scripture and features simple exercises help you pour out your heart to the Lord. As you draw close to Him, Jesus will give you the peace you need. Sign up for your Be Still: Finding Peace in Troubled Times Devotional Journal here   I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Christine's interview?  

Aug 2020

44 min 3 sec

“We can spend our whole lives being busy - or being purposeful"  In this episode, Liz Bohannon, author of "Beginner's Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose and Impact Now", shares how to live a life of integrity and courage to continually pursue the unique passions God places on our hearts. Early on in her career, Liz felt convicted that her daily life and community did not line up with her passion to help women and girls living in extreme poverty and conflict zones. This conviction compelled her to buy a one-way ticket to Uganda and set her on the course to discovering what it means to live every day actively seeking God and relying on Him. There are a lot of good dreams and priorities out there, but not all of them are a part of God's plan for you. Rather than trying to do and be everything you see in others, God wants to free you to be you and to live with confidence in His ability to use your life to impact others every day. (Liz's passion to educate and empower women across the globe led her and her husband to start a socially conscious fashion brand, Sseko Designs. Be sure to check out their beautiful shop in the links below!) { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show True passion drives you beyond intellectual beliefs and strong opinions to action It is just as important to keep the promises we make to ourselves Bold promises push us to go further God doesn't ask us to take on anyone else's values, priorities or expectations "All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one" Matthew 5:37 Get alone with God and ask Him what is most important for your life, then act on it We cannot cheer others on well unless we are rooted and secure in our own God-given priorities Finding your passion has nothing to do with luck and everything to do with pluck Pluck is spirited and determined courage We don't find our passion and purpose; we build it one step at a time Building a life of purpose, passion and impact comes from seeking God and taking steps as He leads You don't have to be extraordinary to build a life of extraordinary impact Growth Mentality: When you recognize and accept that you are average and continue pressing forward When we accept being average, it makes more room for God to be BIG If you are paralyzed by a big vision, narrow it down to as small of a goal as you can The "work" we are called to do is simply understanding that we are already loved, forgiven, acceptable and good enough Jesus went before us so we don't need performance or perfection   There’s nothing I can do to make God love me less or more.  I don’t have to hurry or worry Jesus settled the score. ~ Jefferson Bethke  Links from Show Book: Beginner's Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose and Impact Now Sseko Designs Shop [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Liz Bohannon Website |Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Liz's interview?

Jul 2020

1 hr

“There is not a cookie-cutter approach to women's ministry!” Are you a women's ministry leader or have a desire to see a thriving ministry for the women of your church? There is nothing more powerful than women coming together around the name of Jesus - but we need to rethink women's ministry in order to reach the hearts of women today. And no one knows their hearts better than the God who loves them so much. The Holy Spirit wants to help us shape a ministry that changes women's lives. Nobody understands this better than my friend, Cyndee Ownbey. She has devoted much of her life to ministering to women through her popular website, Women's Ministry Toolbox, and has recently published a book called, Rethinking Women's Ministry: Biblical, Practical Tools for Cultivating a Flourishing Community. Women long for connection and friends to grow beside and God wants to use the church to cultivate those relationships with each other and with Him. In this episode, Cyndee walks us through the challenges and joys of women's ministry today and how we can keep it both current and purposeful. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We have to prayerfully seek out God's heart and His desire for the women of our area Consider the unique demographic you are trying to reach Survey the women of your church and community to discover what their needs and availability are Incorporating all of the generations takes intentionality Find ways to create a mentoring culture between generations Take time to consider how your ministry affects women in all different stages of life Intentional icebreakers are a great way to create connection Use assigned seating at events or find ways to encourage ladies to engage with those they don't already know Don't try to do it alone; We are stronger with a team When we do everything ourselves, we rob others of the opportunity to use their gifts and experience personal growth and joy Stop and pray before you jump into any opportunity When creating a team: Start with prayer Get advice from leadership Search for people with specific gifts to fill specific roles Invite them to prayerfully consider the opportunity Use social media as a tool to engage your women outside of the church Honor people where they are and help them navigate forward Take small steps toward changing the culture So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up. Ephesians 4:11-12 Links from Show Women's Ministry Toolbox  Rethinking Women's Ministry: Biblical, Practical Tools for Cultivating a Flourishing Community   Connect with Cindee Ownbey Website | Facebook | Pinterest| Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Cindee's interview?

Jul 2020

41 min 53 sec

"Will you be faithful to serve God when you are still in the shadows?"  In this episode, writer & host of The Christian Woman Leadership Podcast, Esther Littlefield, shares her journey of learning to trust God and lead with confidence. Esther has always had a desire to lead women, but it didn't happen overnight. One of her biggest challenges was confidence. After looking in other directions for validation and confidence, she discovered it was only available in Christ. As she remained faithful to obey and serve God with whatever He placed in front of her, He eventually opened the door, both in the church and the business world, for her to lead women like she had always dreamed. Whether you've always felt called to lead or have recently had it thrust upon you, God wants to equip and strengthen you for the work He has called you to! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show We are all leading in some area (i.e. parenting, work, church, friendships) To discern where and how God wants you to lead: Pray and reflect on the areas you are most excited about or feel God uses you the most and ask how He wants to use you to lead in that area Act in response to God's direction Rather than trying to find God's will, “Watch to see where God is working and join Him” (Henry T Blackaby, Experiencing God) A closed door does not mean a broken dream; sometimes it just means "wait" "Closed doors are not rejection, they are direction" ~ Joanna Weaver Be faithful to do what God has in front of you right now and trust Him to show you the next steps "Deepen the message. Let God broaden the ministry" ~ Joanna Weaver God knows where and when we are ready to lead others; we will replicate what we are Confidence grows as we take small actions of faith and obedience Your worth has to come from God, not the role you feel called to Acknowledge the areas you feel insecure or lack confidence and take them to God Invite God into your fears and broken places Confidence in not about you; it is about the God who lives in you Look in God's Word for the truth of who He is and what He says about you The root of confidence is trust in God God wants to bring wholeness to every area of our lives, not just the ones we feel called to lead in True confidence and flourishing operates out of our close walk with the Lord But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,     whose confidence is in him. ~ Jeremiah 17:7   Links from Show The Christian Woman Leadership Podcast  Morningstar Media Services [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Esther Littlefield Website | Facebook| Instagram Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Esther's interview?

Jul 2020

39 min 14 sec

"Parenting may be one of the hardest jobs, but it is so rewarding!" I've been looking forward to this discussion with with my adult kids, John Michael Weaver and Jessica Downs - but to be honest, I've been nervous! After all, I told them I wanted them to be honest about their upbringing as PKs (pastor's kids)...who knows what they might say? It ended up being a precious conversation as we talked openly about what they found difficult in their growing up years as well as the things that worked. John and I definitely didn't do it perfect, but John Michael and Jessica identify some key things that helped them come to love Jesus - as well as His Church. Including the massive impact of a godly father who was the same in the pulpit as he was in our home.    Perhaps you raised your kids just like we did, but they've chosen not to follow the Lord. Perhaps you didn't have an idyllic childhood or a father (or church) who consistently showed you the love of Jesus. I want to invite you to bring your pain to the Lord this Father's Day and allow Him to heal your heart. Though we can't go back and change history, God wants to write a new story in our hearts. In our families. In our churches. And even in our world! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } We'll be discussing... Embrace Family Boundaries (Heart over Rules)  Teach your kids how to recognize God's conviction and to live counter-culturally Establish boundaries and who you want to be as a family Resist putting pressure on your kids to be perfect "Jesus is more concerned about how we treat the people He created and died for then our personal righteousness" ~John Michael (ref. our righteous acts are like filthy rags Isaiah 64:6) Try to help them understand the importance of their hearts versus legalistically following rules Distinguish between doctrine and personal convictions Trust the Holy Spirit to lead and guide your children into their own personal convictions Remember, "God gave you your children...not to rule but to guide" - Julie Olson Lindemuth Cultivate an Atmosphere to Personally Encounter Jesus  Demonstrate a love for the Church, God's people and His mission Reinforce that your children have a unique, God-given purpose and calling Help them engage in the life of the church and find their place to serve and grow Make Jesus a part of everything (i.e. school, work, discipline, sports) Be the same person at church, at home and everywhere else Be humble and honest about your own shortcomings and quick to ask for forgiveness Invest in as many opportunities as possible so kids can personally encounter Jesus  (church camps, conventions, etc...) Be available to them in the good and bad, exciting and mundane, ups and downs of life Love your spouse well in front of your kids Create a Church Environment that Kids Enjoy Become an active part in a church that values kids and youth Allow church leaders, teachers and Christian adults to connect with your kids and speak into their lives Surround them with friends and families who are like-minded Give children & youth opportunities to memorize God's Word and instill His truth into their hearts Encourage mentorship and create moments where other godly people can affirm your kids - Bar/Bat Barack Don't underestimate your role in the lives of other children and teens in your church Talk positively about the church to your kids Even if you weren't raised in a healthy Christian home, it's not too late to create your own with the Holy Spirit's help. Start children off on the way they should go,     and even when they are old they will not turn from it. ~Proverbs 22:6 My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. ~2 Corinthians 12:9 Additional Resources Parenting Episode - 033: Mama Bear Apologetics with Hillary Morgan Ferrer | The Living Room

Jun 2020

1 hr 17 min

 “What if all God created you to do was to live a simple life of loving Him?” In part one, my dear friend and best-selling author, Robin Gunn, spoke to how we can live out our call by sharing her personal journey of growing in confidence. As we keep our eyes on God, He wants to give us the ability to trust His power at work in our lives and His ability to accomplish His purposes. In this episode, Robin continues the conversation by addressing the myths associated with pursuing our dreams and living out our call. With the expansion of opportunities there can be a lot of pressure on women today to discover their purpose, fulfill big dreams and make their mark on the world. Rather than live in fear that we will miss God's amazing plan for our lives, God wants to free us to simply walk hand in hand with Him every day. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Show up and do what is in front of you Be prepared for obstacles and trials along the way Continue walking in faith even when you can't see the bigger purpose Accept what God has in mind for your life, rather than trying to fulfill the expectations and dreams of other people When we walk with God every day, we don't have to be afraid of missing His will God walks beside us in all the ups and downs of life, because He knows we need a journey Jesus had 30 years of obscurity, Moses was exiled for 40 years, and Joseph was confined by the pit and prison all before their most impactful ministry years We keep wanting the final product, but God uses the process We have to trust that our Good Father knows how and when to set us up for true success The deep work God does in us is more important than the broad influence He entrusts to us Continually ask God for wisdom - that's your compass Make yourself available to God and walk in obedience today Godliness with contentment is great gain. ~ 1 Timothy 6:6 Links from Show Previous Episode 034: Living Out Your Call Part 1 with Robin Jones Gunn | The Living Room Finding Father Christmas Series Becoming Us: A Novel (Haven Makers Book 1) Being Known: A Novel (Haven Makers Book 2)  Video Joanna referenced [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Robin Jones Gunn Website | Facebook | Instagram| Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Robin's interview?

Jun 2020

31 min 24 sec

 “True confidence is found in Christ alone!” In this episode, my dear friend and best-selling author, Robin Gunn, shares her personal journey of growing in confidence. Robin is the author of nearly 100 books and in many ways has become a mother of the faith to this generation of women through her faith-filled stories that depict real life struggles and situations. As an author and a person of faith, she has had to learn to rely on God's empowerment to fulfill His calling on her life. When we look to our abilities we will always come up short, but when we choose to accept that the One who calls us is also the One who both equips us and determines the outcome, then we can have confidence that His purposes will be accomplished. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Our job is to walk in faith and obedience and trust God with the results Blessings always come inside obedience God puts boundaries on our lives to truly set us free Your confidence in God and His ability to work through you grows as you step out in faith more When we recognize a gift or calling from God in our lives, we have to rely on Him to make it possible Apart from God we can do nothing (John 15:15), but we can do all things through Christ (Phil 4:13) In Creation, God only made one part at a time and He still called it "good" Guilt does not bring the life and change that God desires for us Have faith that what needs to get done will get done and trust God with the rest King David did not get to build the temple but He still fulfilled the purposes of God in His time (Acts 13:36) God wants to give you confidence to do only what He is putting before you, rather than taking on the expectations of others Be willing to dream a dream that may not be fulfilled in your generation Be faithful to do whatever part God has placed in front of you in His strength Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 1:6   Links from Show Christy Miller Series Becoming Us: A Novel (Haven Makers Book 1) Being Known: A Novel (Haven Makers Book 2)  Spoken For: Embracing Who You Are and Whose You Are [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Robin Jones Gunn Website | Facebook | Instagram| Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Robin's interview?

Jun 2020

31 min 6 sec

“Every Christian needs to understand why they believe what they believe!” Moms, we've all experienced a time when our little one is about to get bulldozed on the playground and that "mama bear" protective instinct kicks in. What if we were that protective over the hearts and minds of our children, determined to give them every tool necessary to fight the influx of false ideas and come out standing on a strong foundation? In a culture that is constantly changing, we have been given this responsibility of teaching our kids how to form their beliefs about what is true and what is false. God is calling us to stop standing idly by and instead "Let [our] reasonableness be known to everyone" because "the Lord is at hand!" (Philippians 4:5 ESV). In this episode, Hillary Morgan Ferrer, founder of Mama Bear Apologetics, shares how we can intentionally build a moral foundation for our kids. When we know what Scripture says, we can more easily identify when it is being misused and share God's truth in love. Hillary's new book, Mama Bear Apologetics™: Empowering Your Kids to Challenge Cultural Lies, breaks down the lies that are perpetrating our culture and how the Bible refutes each one. The good news is we don't have to know everything to begin building this kind of foundation our kids can stand on. God wants to help you, my friend! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Apologetics: to give an offense or reason for something The Bible is not just authoritative; it is proven, reasonable and true Good apologetics separates the people from the ideas; demolishing ideas, not people Try to build bridges of agreement before dismantling false ideas and areas of disagreement The Mama Bear doesn't hate other ideas as much as she loves her children Emotionalism (the more I feel something the more true it is) is a dangerous theology The enemy does not want you to be reasoned and informed with the truth Our kids need to know why the Bible is trustworthy and worth suffering for Culture today assigns false definitions to God's morals (e.g. just, love) Pray for your kids to have a personal encounter with Jesus Seek to give your children tools for Biblical thinking, rather than make everything black and white without reasoning Make room for your kids to ask questions Be the first to address objections to Christianity with your kids and how to refute them You don't have to understand everything at once; it's ok to take information in bite sizes Learn your kids' personality types and identify how you can best help them understand and experience God Teach the "thinker" that God is noble and that there is enough influence to reveal He exists and He is good Teach the "feeler" that God is transformative and trustworthy Teach the "doer" that God moves and acts, often through us, and get them involved in projects that show radical transformation See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy,which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ. ~ Colossians 2:8 NIV Links from Show Book: Mama Bear Apologetics™: Empowering Your Kids to Challenge Cultural Lies Mama Bear Apologetics Podcast Global Prison Seminaries Foundation [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Mama Bear Apologetics Website | Facebook| Instagram | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Hillary's interview?

May 2020

50 min 39 sec

"If God doesn't keep His emotions from me, why am I working so hard to hide mine from Him?"  Do you ever feel stuck in your hurt or labeled by the pain of your past? In this episode, international speaker and author, Esther Fleece Allen, shares from her books No More Faking Fine: Ending the Pretending and Your New Name: Saying Goodbye to the Labels That Limit. After a long season of silencing her pain, Esther discovered the healing and intimacy with God that takes place when we turn to Him and honestly voice our hurt from hardships and disappointments. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show NO MORE FAKING FINE: Ending the Pretending We're told to "fake it until you make it" - but that's nowhere in scripture. Scripture is full of laments - people pouring out their hurt and hearts honestly before God. God wants your "sad" - Let God heal your memories and speak truth to the lies. Lies can become our belief systems. We have to challenge our thinking and habits with the truth of God's Word. Jeremiah was the weeping prophet, Paul had a ministry of tears, Jesus wept, and the Holy Spirit grieves. The enemy makes us feel like we will always be stuck in our lamenting, but God promises to lead us through it. Healing can take time, but it is worth persevering and pursuing God in the midst of our pain. Your lament won't be your final song - God gives us a new song when we seek Him during times of despair or distress (Psalm 40) YOUR NEW NAME: Saying Goodbye to the Labels That Limit We cannot allow our circumstances, hurt or feelings to label us. God gives new names: Jacob to Israel, Abram and Sarai become Abraham and Sarah. Jesus comes to give us a new name, a new covenant. He makes us a new creation and gives us a new spirit, a new heart. Be kind to yourself and give the Holy Spirit time to work in you. Naomi (sweet) named herself Mara (bitter). Don't rename yourself too soon! Live out of your new name! Jesus is our Redeemer - He redeems everything that touches our lives. Jesus is collecting your tears in a bottle (Psalm 56:8) - He is with you and wants to meet you in your pain. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise. ~ Psalm 51:17 As for me, I call to God, and the Lord saves me. Evening, morning and noon. I cry out in distress, and he hears my voice. ~ Psalm 55:16-17  Links from Show  No More Faking Fine: Ending the Pretending Your New Name: Saying Goodbye to the Labels That Limit [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Esther Fleece Allen Website | Facebook| Instagram  Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Esther's interview?

May 2020

50 min 7 sec

“Fear is not a sign that you should not do something!” Are you feeling stuck or paralyzed by fear? In this episode, business coach and the author of Fear Is Not the Boss of You: How to Get Out of Your Head and Live the Life You Were Made For, Jennifer Allwood, shares how we can courageously take one step after the other. An early desire to decorate houses turned into a career of encouraging and motivating women to show up for their lives without feelings of guilt, fear or being overwhelmed. We all desire to feel confident, but confidence begins with courage and obedience. When you give your life and dreams over to God, He will free you to walk in boldness and partner with Him every day to experience His abundant life. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Our brain cannot always differentiate between logical and illogical fears Everybody wants to feel confident, but confidence starts with courage and obedience We need confidence in our Creator, not in ourselves When something feels bad or difficult, it doesn't always mean it is bad for us We cannot put our feelings over obedience God is calling us to walk in obedience and to simply keep showing up God will always resource us to do what He is asking us to do We all deal with different fears: fear of failure, fear of success, fear of what other people think, etc... Imposter syndrome: Feeling like a fraud when you compare yourself to others We are not defined or validated by titles; Our value is found in being God's child It takes a humble confidence to recognize the gifts and talents God has given us When we give our hearts to Christ, we also give up the right to control our lives It can bring comfort to know God is in charge when we know how good He is God's will is not as narrow and difficult as we think at times Put action to your faith - start down a path and trust God to guide you along the way God is not going to let you deter from His will without letting you know God allows us to make some of our own decisions because He wants us to mature and become more like Him in the process Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9 Links from Show Fear Is Not the Boss of You: How to Get Out of Your Head and Live the Life You Were Made For The Jennifer Allwood Show  Be Still - Devotional Journal One Thing Monday Archive (YouTube) [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Jennifer Allwood Website | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter ONE THING MONDAYS  The Lord has been laying some important things on my heart to share with you and, if they resonate with you, to be shared by you. You can access the videos at: ​FACEBOOK​ ​YOUTUBE​ ​INSTAGRAM​ Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Jennifer's interview?

Apr 2020

49 min 16 sec

"God can take everything the enemy intended for evil and use it for your good!"  Have you ever felt added pressure on your marriage from a circumstance completely out of your control? Challenges like infidelity, financial upheaval, rebellious children, or a traumatic accident can shape and influence our marriages dramatically. In this episode, bestselling author and international speaker, Carol Kent, shares from her newest book, Staying Power: Building a Stronger Marriage When Life Sends Its Worst. Carol and her husband, Gene, have walked through difficult seasons together as they faced the initial shock and acceptance of the permanent incarceration of their only son. They partnered in writing this powerful book with Dave and Cindy Lambert, who have experienced heartaches of their own, to provide practical insight and wisdom for all couples to withstand the inevitable stressors and outside circumstances that too often weaken or destroy marriages. If your marriage is currently undergoing great hardship, you are looking for ways to strengthen your marriage or you are just stepping into marriage, this is for you! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show All of the answers to today's problems are found in the Word of God Bad things will happen because we live in a fallen world - We will not be completely free of stress, pain and suffering until we get to Heaven Staying power is the commitment to stay connected to God's Word and to our spouse in difficult times When tragedy strikes we have the opportunity to allow the situation to become a platform to glorify God and His Kingdom When you are in the middle of suffering, look for ways to serve and bless someone and you will experience joy Make pre-decisions: Before suffering strikes choose to respect and listen to your spouse and serve them sacrificially no matter what Practice automatic forgiveness: Remind yourself that your spouse loves you and has good intentions towards you so you can be quick to forgive him Control your tongue: Intentionally find ways to uplift, encourage and affirm your spouse Agree to disagree: Each spouse will process and respond to hardships and tragedies in a different way Time-outs: Allow yourself and your spouse to take a break from all the decisions and heaviness Be willing to accept help from other people Decision making is hard in marriage, but every day is full of the need to make important decisions 10-second rule: "Just do the next thing you are reasonably certain Jesus wants you to do and commit to it immediately in the next ten seconds before you change your mind" - Clare De Graaf Evaluate, meditate on God's Word, discuss it with your spouse and move forward with a decision Relinquish your expectations to God and allow Him to give purpose to your pain and joy to your heart Forgiveness does not negate the wrong done to you, but it sets you free from bitterness and anger to walk in joy and love God can take everything the enemy intended for evil and use it for your good She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. ~ Proverbs 31:12 Links from Show New Book: Staying Power: Building a Stronger Marriage When Life Sends Its Worst Previous Book: When I Lay My Isaac Down: Unshakable Faith in Unthinkable Circumstances Speak Up Ministries Speak Up For Hope [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Carol Kent Website | Facebook| Instagram | Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you...

Apr 2020

48 min 41 sec

 “You are loved no matter your past experiences or mistakes!” Have you ever felt the pressure to uphold a certain image? Many of us have learned how to pretend and perform in front of others, wearing a mask and living a life we were never created to live. We can be so afraid to admit our brokenness and allow others in, but that is exactly where God wants to bring healing. In this episode, Ashley Abercrombie, author of Rise of the Truth Teller: Own Your Story, Tell it Like it is, and Live with Holy Gumption, shares her story of learning to live out loud, allowing others to share in her story and to be real with her as well. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show "There is not greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you" - Maya Angelou As we share our stories, we give people permission to share theirs as well. As we pursue wholeness over perfection, we discover we don't have to pretend and perform. We don't have to lie to live. We can be loved even though we've made mistakes and in spite of the things that have happened to us. Living bound by hatred and unforgiveness only leads to shame. God wants to help us break free and experience His life-altering grace. Give yourself permission to: Admit to God that you're broken Own the fact that you're not perfect Suspend judgment about yourself and others Receive God's grace If we are not changing, we are not becoming like Jesus. "I don't have to find myself, I can allow God to reveal what He's always had in mind." ~ Joanna Don't create yourself in your own image - let God make you into the image of Christ. Ask: God, what do you want to deal with? Listen: God's leading via internal impressions, Scripture, faith community, service, solitude, worship, and prayer. We are not free agents, we are part of a community. The Lord knows exactly where you are. He knows exactly what you have and what you need. Living with Holy Gumption is not contingent on what you have or don't have. It's found in knowing you are uniquely created to be right where you are - you have something to give to the world! Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. ~ Matthew 10:39 Links from Show Rise of the Truth Teller: Own Your Story, Tell it Like it is, and Live with Holy Gumption Why Tho Podcast   Previous Blog Post: The Practical Power of "One Thing" [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Ashley Abercrombie Website | Facebook | Instagram| Twitter Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Ashley's interview?

Mar 2020

42 min 54 sec

“There is beauty in every step when you just keep walking with Jesus!” In this episode, my friend and the author of She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live, Debbie Lindell, shares about her journey of learning to seek God and rely on His truth and power.  Debbie and her husband, John, knew early on in their marriage that God was calling them into pastoral ministry, but she struggled to believe that she had what it took to lead others. Currently, God has positioned them as lead pastors of a large church and ministries that are making a global impact. Debbie discovered along the way that it is not enough to know or even understand the truth of God's Word, we have to embrace it for ourselves. For nothing is impossible when we choose to believe that God can use us to accomplish His purposes through His power. God wants you to embrace the truth of who He created you to be so that you can represent Him to the world around you. { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show The enemy wants us to doubt God's truth about who we are We have to believe that God can use us and then rely completely on His power If we rely only on ourselves, we will never see the supernatural power of God manifested in our lives Get alone with Jesus so He can speak His truth and direction into your heart God specializes in changing hearts When we choose obedience, it gives God access to change our hearts If we'll give God our time, He can transform our faulty thinking God longs for His children to look to Him first and He never fails to respond When we commit ourselves to God, He will work in His timing and His ways  (Psalm 37:5) As the bride of Christ, we are invited into an intimate relationship with God which requires intentionality The more time you spend with God, the more you begin to hear and understand Him God speaks to us in many different ways when we are actively listening Our responsibility is to seek God with all of our hearts; it is up to Him to speak to us how He desires Prayer is the baseline for understanding who God is and what He can do in and through us The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. ~ John 10:10 Links from Show She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live She Prays: A 31-Day Journey to Confident Conversations with God Designed For Life Conference 2020 [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Connect with Debbie Lindell Website |Instagram | Facebook Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Don't Miss the Giveaway! Be sure to visit my FACEBOOK page and/or Instagram page to enter to win both of Debbie's books, She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live and She Prays: A 31-Day Journey to Confident Conversations with God. Once you're at either page, find the giveaway graphic and follow these instructions: 1. LIKE Instagram pagemy Facebook page (1 entry) 2. LIKE and Follow my Instagram page (1 entry) 3. TAG a few friends in the comments below the giveaway post at either page. Each tag is a new entry! Giveaway runs through March 17th and the winner will be announced under the original post the next day. Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Debbie's interview?

Mar 2020

1 hr 2 min

"What if we stopped saying, 'Lord, change him' and started praying, 'Lord, change me'?" If you're like me, you may have entered into marriage with some false expectations and even found yourself thinking "he's not the man I married!"  In this episode, my husband, John and I talk about embracing our differences rather than resenting them. As we begin to recognize and appreciate our spouse for who they are rather than trying to fit them into our mold and expectations, it frees both of us to become all God has created us to be. Let's choose to love each other fully, not for who we think the other person ought to be, but for who they are! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } We'll be discussing... Embrace your differences as a gift rather than an issue We often expect our spouse will be like us or like our parent The way we want to be loved is not always the way our spouse wants to be loved Look for ways to work together on household chores rather than expect your spouse to do certain tasks a certain way Communicate your expectations to one another and be willing to listen and adjust Accept and love your spouse where he or she is rather than try to fix them Don't allow the seed of discontent and disillusionment to destroy your love for your spouse Practice asking your spouse "What can I do to help you?" "God hasn't called us to be successful, He's called us to be faithful!" ~ Mother Teresa Make room for each other's opinions Proverbs encourages us to seek the counsel of others and this includes our spouse (Proverbs 11:14, 15:22, 24:6) Mutual Submission - when you don't agree on a decision, choose to wait and go to prayer God created woman as helper/helpmeet, meaning "one who gives an answer" (Genesis 2:18) Women, your opinions matter and can give great counsel, but were never meant to rule your husband Become a student of your spouse and learn how to love them best Balancing Marriage, Family and Ministry Make room for your spouse to have a personal walk with Jesus When you intentionally love God with all your heart first, you'll have love for your spouse, kids and the church Ministry follows family Be fully present wherever you are (church, home, etc...) You are never called to ministry at the expense of your family Be the same person everywhere you go Set your personal and family priorities, being careful not to overcommit to too many activities There will be seasons where ministry will require extra and that is ok, but don't allow that to be the norm Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. ~ Ephesians 5:21-25 Additional Resources 016: Choosing to Forgive | The Living Room  025: The Gospel-Centered Enneagram with Beth McCord | The Living Room 026: The Art of Becoming Us with Beth McCord | The Living Room Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage by Beth McCord Having a Mary Spirit: Allowing God to Change Us From the Inside Out TDF Inventory - Cognitive Process - (I think is the test we took) Previous Blog: The Gift of Marriage Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Don't Miss an Episode! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!)   The Living Room Community Looking for a community of Jesus-hearted women to learn and grow with?

Feb 2020

45 min 4 sec

“The way you view life is not the only way!” In the previous episode, Beth McCord, founder of Your Enneagram Coach, shared the core motivators behind each of the nine Enneagram personality types from a Biblical perspective. Each personality is God-given and designed with longings that only He can fill. In this episode, Beth shares from her new book, Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage. Every marriage represents two personalities who have to learn to value each other and work together. Understanding the different personality types can help us to better love and value all people, especially our spouse. Be sure to check out Beth's tips at the bottom for how to love and support each personality type in a way that understands his unique perspective and points him to Christ! { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Understanding our spouse's Enneagram type helps us to walk beside and support them Understanding our own Enneagram type helps us to own our faults and grow to become more like Christ God uniquely created each individual and each personality type When we become aware of our type and the types of others we can better love, understand and value people “It takes a lifetime to really, truly know someone, so always strive to be a student of your spouse." (Eye2eyemarriage) Every personality type brings value and reflects God to the world No combination of personality types is better or worse for a marriage The key to every personality type is being aligned with the truth of the gospel Christ is the only Spring of Living Water who can quench your thirst The more you drink from the Source, you will be changed and see your relationship change God promises to renew us every day as we continually surrender and depend on Him Begin to accept your spouse, rather than always expect certain things from him Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. ~ Romans 15:7 CLICK HERE to print Graphic PDF Links from Show Previous Episode: 025: The Gospel-Centered Enneagram with Beth McCord | The Living Room Beth's Book: Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage Free ENNEAGRAM Assessment Free Download: Core Motivations Free Download: Mistyping Guide Exploring You Course  Becoming Us Marriage Course  [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.] Connect with Beth McCord Website | Facebook| Instagram | Twitter | YouTube Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Win Beth's Book & Discovering You Course! Be sure to check out the contest that has been running on my FACEBOOK page and enter to win a copy of Beth's new book, Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage, as well as her “Discovering You” course filled with tools to help you understand the nine Ennegram types and nail down your own number. Here is a direct link to the GIVEAWAY post with all the instructions. Once you're there, be sure to: 1. LIKE my Facebook page 2. SHARE the GIVEAWAY post on your page 3. TAG a few friends in the comments below the GIVEAWAY post. Each tag is a new entry! Giveaway runs through February 25th at midnight and the winner will be announced under the original post the next day. Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Beth's interview?

Feb 2020

44 min 30 sec

“God's Word speaks to the core longing of your heart!” In this episode, Beth McCord, founder of Your Enneagram Coach, breaks down the deep truths of the Enneagram from a Biblical perspective. Rather than using this personality assessment as a sword meant to harm others or as a shield used to protect ourselves, the Enneagram serves as an x-ray that reveals underlying truths in our lives. God created each person uniquely on purpose. When we understand our God-given uniqueness and continually align ourselves with the truth of His Word, we can live with a deeper sense of purpose and appreciation of others. (Don't miss the BIG GIVEAWAY opportunity at the end!) { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Just like everything else in life, we have to filter the Enneagram through the truth of the gospel The Enneagram is a personal growth tool that helps us understand why we think and feel certain ways Every personality type has core motivations: fears, desires, weaknesses and longings The Enneagram can help you identify patterns that get you off course so you can get back in alignment with the gospel and who God created you to be With clarity provided by the Ennegram, we can own our shortcomings, ask for forgiveness and walk in the power of the Spirit We cannot save or change ourselves - our job is to trust God and walk in obedience to the Spirit as He works in our lives God designed each of us uniquely on purpose and He does not make mistakes In Christ, our relationship status never changes We become misaligned when our minds and hearts wander from believing any of God's truths If we are being led by our core longings alone, we won't become all that God wants us to be The progression of an idol is desire, demand, judge, and punish God's Word holds the answers to the longings of our hearts There is no right or wrong, better or worse personality types When we become aware of our type and the types of others we can better love, understand and value people Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 1:6 Links from Show Beth's Book: Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage Free Enneagram Assessment Mistypes: Deciding Between Enneagram Types Enneagram Core Motivations PDF Joanna's Book: Having a Mary Spirit: Allowing God to Change Us from the Inside Out [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   BIG GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY Be sure to visit my FACEBOOK page and enter to win a copy of Beth's new book, Becoming Us: Using the Enneagram to Create a Thriving Gospel-Centered Marriage, as well as her “Discovering You” course filled with tools to help you understand the nine Ennegram types and nail down your own number. Once you're at my page, here's how to enter: 1. LIKE my Facebook page 2. Find the post with the giveaway graphic and SHARE it on your page 3. TAG a few friends in the comments below the giveaway post. Each tag is a new entry! Giveaway runs through February 25th at midnight and the winner will be announced under the original post the next day. Connect with Beth McCord Website | Facebook| Instagram | Twitter | YouTube Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter Get Episode Updates! We'd love to have you join our special Living Room Podcast email list. Even if you're already part of my regular list, by applying in the form below, you'll be notified when new episodes air - and get a special gift for joining (among other things!) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Beth's interview?

Feb 2020

45 min 17 sec

“Is the life you lead the life that longs to live in you?” In this episode, national speaker and bestselling author, Rebekah Lyons, shares from her newest book, Rhythms of Renewal: Trading Stress and Anxiety for a Life of Peace and Purpose. Having dealt with several unexpected life changes, Rebekah discovered that life often throws curveballs we never planned for. But these curveballs do not have to derail our lives or steal our peace. It is in the midst of our pain that we often encounter the deep love of Jesus. Rebekah shares ways we can function within the rhythms God established for us, and through doing so, discover our God-given purpose and the true peace and rest He offers for our souls. (If you have kids with special needs, I think you're really going to enjoy our discussion at the end.) { USE PLAYER BAR @ TOP OF PAGE to listen to show, subscribe and share } Important Takeaways from Show Your environment doesn't have to determine your peace Relapses remind us of our frailty and our need for God every day Rest and Restore are input rhythms that God pours into our lives when we partner with Him Connect and Create are output rhythms that God designed us to experience for our good and His purposes You cannot give what you have not received The effectiveness of our creativity is dependent upon our ability to rest We are invited to pour out our hearts to God rather than stuff everything in God is a holistic God who dwells in every area of our lives and wants to help us become whole When we offer our worst to God, He offers His best in return - His righteousness, grace and love that covers it all Our diet greatly influences our mental health and God wants to partner with us in our health journey God's boundaries are a part of His offer for intimacy with us "Your spouse and your children are irritants. They refine you and show you who you really are." - Dr. Emerson Eggerichs  As we say "yes" to Jesus, His grace is released to enable us to do what we could never do on our own God wants to meet you in the midst of your pain and He never withholds the daily portion that you need “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 MSG Links from Show Rhythms of Renewal: Trading Stress and Anxiety for a Life of Peace and Purpose Healthy Rhythms Quiz Love & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs [Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]   Episodes You Might Enjoy TLR 001: Living Fully Alive with Susie Larson TLR 018: The Relentless Presence of God with Michele Cushatt TLR 023: Four Ways to Move Forward   Connect with Rebekah Lyons Website |Instagram | Facebook | Twitter  Connect with Joanna  Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter   Move Forward With Confidence If you feel stuck or just need a little clarity as to how to move forward in 2020, this simple "MOVING FORWARD" worksheet may help. (Designed to complement the "DECADE IN REVIEW" worksheets.) I'd love to hear from you... What spoke most to you from Rebekah's interview?

Jan 2020

58 min 27 sec