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Jennifer Slattery Christian Blog and Commentary

Jennifer Slattery

Author and speaker Jennifer Slattery has addressed women’s groups, Bible studies, and writers across the nation and her love for seeing others embrace freedom in Christ is evident in each of her six contemporary novels and on her devotional blog, JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com She has a passion for helping women discover, embrace, and live out who they are in Christ. As Founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, she and her team partner with churches to facilitate events designed to help women rest in their true worth and live with maximum impact. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband. Visit with Jennifer on Facebook at JenSlatte.

I rarely, almost never, tumble unexpectedly into sin. God usually gives me ample warning. That ugly comment I blurted in an unguarded moment can usually be traced to a root of bitterness I fed the week before. That burst of pride that soured a ministry event probably arose from days where busyness overshadowed my Bible reading time. That half-truth came from self-protection that came from unchecked and unrepentive pride. I'm routinely "tripping over" the cracks of sin, deceiving myself into believing I'm a victim in the warfare of life, when in reality, most falls arise from neglected pathways. 

Proverbs 4:26 says, "Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure" (ESV).

We live in the midwest. We get blizzards, tornadoes, thunderstorms, and have hot, humid summers. We’ve also got the beautiful deciduous trees with thick trunks and branches. Which means, we’ve got roots–the ones that wiggle beneath sidewalks, uplifting big chunks of cement. These ruts and raises turn an easy jog into quite an obstacle course.

Most times I navigate over the bumps and crevices with no problem, but every once in a while, when I’m tired or lost in thought, the raised cement catches me off guard and sends me flying. Not a pretty sight. In fact, I’ve been known to stop traffic, and not in a good way. (Nothing like seeing a thirtysomething howl like a toddler before falling prostrate on the cement. Yep. Attractive.) So I pick myself up off the ground, tell the gawkers I’m okay, and glance back at the mammoth boulder I tripped over. Heat sears my cheeks as I realize I stumbled over not a boulder, but the tiniest of cracks.

After one particularly embarrassing fall, I decided to choose my route a bit more carefully. I forewent the raised slabs of cement, opting for a smooth roadway instead.

I think our spiritual life is like this sometimes. Often we can traipse through life without a bump or a stumble. During those times, it’s easy to get over-confident. Sin will never happen to us. We’re strong. But then, when we least expect it, we trip over a bump in the road. Might not even be a big bump. But it’s big enough to send us flying.

God knows this about us and has provided warnings in His Word, like the one quoted at the beginning of this post. He wants us to choose level paths–to live with intentionality. This level path we choose might look different for each of us. If we struggle with drinking, it means no hanging out in bars. If we struggle with impure thoughts, we probably need to avoid many of today’s secular novels, movies, and television shows. If we struggle with disinterment, we might need to toss out those clothing catalogs. If we struggle with gossip, we might need to be selective about who we spend our time with. I know. Sounds restrictive. Perhaps even unnecessary, but take it from a fellow pavement-eater, choosing level paths is much more pleasant than loosing skin.

What about you? Any rerouting God might want to do in your life? Maybe you’ve already made a hard right, veering on a new, smooth course. We’d love to hear about it. Join us at Living by Grace as we talk about ways to avoid that rather embarrassing fall.

Make sure to sign up for my free quarterly emailing. As a thank you gift, subscribers receive a free, 36-lesson Bible study based on 1 Timothy (download link sent separately, in a welcome email). They also receive great content (short stories, devotionals, recipes, and more) sent directly to their inbox each quarter. You can sign up HERE. (You can check out this month's mailing HERE.) 

If you love fiction, check out my latest novel, Restoring Her FaithHERE, and you can preorder my next one, releasing in September, HERE.

Here's more about the story:

She left belief behind…
Yet this family could change her mind


With two boys to raise, a fledgling contracting business to run and a family ranch to keep afloat, widower Drake Owens finds his hands aren’t just full—they’re overflowing. When Faith Nichols is hired to help him renovate the church, he’s drawn to the beautiful artist, but he can’t fall for a woman who isn’t a believer. Can love restore her faith…and his heart?

And make sure to check out Wholly Loved Ministries' latest release, Drawing Near, a 90-Day Devotional designed to help you deepen your faith and draw your relationship with Christ.

Each day, God beckons us to Himself, calling us to rest in His love and grace. As we do, He heals our hurts, overpowers our fears with love, and restores us to the women He created us to be. This 90-day devotional, written by women who are learning themselves to live anchored in God's grace, will help you deepen your faith and grow your relationship with Christ. You can grab your copy HERE.

I am limited in every way. My strength and wisdom are insufficient, my love is lacking, and my most fervant efforts, on their own, lack power. When human logic and insecurity tell me to work harder, longer, faster, God’s Spirit draws me into His loving, empowering embrace. He tells me to come, to let His presence overshadow me, to let His will be done through me. 

Revelations 3:7 tell us: “This is the message from the One who is holy and true, the One who has the key of David. What He opens no one can close and what He closes, no one can open.”

Ministry isn't about working harder nor setting and achieving our loftiest goals. It’s about drawing near to God and letting Him work in and through us. He wants us to get out of His way so He can change the world, heal hearts, touch lives, through us. This has become a daily, sometimes hourly, reminder for me. One I quickly forget once I turn to my to-do list, and therefore, need to be reminded of again.

Christian, if you are purchased by Christ, redeemed by His blood, He has opened a door for you. That’s why you are here. He’s got a great work for you to do, and He will give you everything you need to accomplish it.

I love Revelations 3:8 “I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that no one can close. You have little strength, yet you obeyed my word and did not deny Me.”

We have little strength in our own power. God knows this, but whatever He's assigned, it’s not about us. He’s already got it covered. His Word tells us His strength is made perfect in our weakness. He doesn’t ask us to start a weight-lifting campaign. He asks us to abide. (John 15:1-4)

(((Quote: If we want to live empowered, we'll prioritize time with God, letting His thoughts fill us and His presence consume us.))) If I want to live empowered, I must prioritize time with God, letting His thoughts fill me, His presence consume me. When I do, my hunger for Him grows. My passion to write igrows. My creativity stirs like an overwhelming fountain. It’s a beautiful, empowering, inspiring thing.

The more time I spend with Him, the more I realize my need for Him.

Stop and listen, prayerfully to the following song, and ask yourself, where am I right now? Am I abiding in the holy of holies, or am lingering in the outer court?

If your answer is the latter, will you let God take you deeper? Will you let Him draw you close, hold you close, and speak to your heart?

Make sure to sign up for my free quarterly emailing. As a thank you gift, subscribers receive a free, 36-lesson Bible study based on 1 Timothy (download link sent separately, in a welcome email). They also receive great content (short stories, devotionals, recipes, and more) sent directly to their inbox each quarter. You can sign up HERE. (You can check out this month's mailing HERE.) 

If you love fiction, check out my latest novel, Restoring Her FaithHERE, and you can preorder my next one, releasing in September, HERE.

And make sure to check out Wholly Loved Ministries' latest release, Drawing Near, a 90-Day Devotional designed to help you deepen your faith and draw your relationship with Christ.

Each day, God beckons us to Himself, calling us to rest in His love and grace. As we do, He heals our hurts, overpowers our fears with love, and restores us to the women He created us to be. This 90-day devotional, written by women who are learning themselves to live anchored in God's grace, will help you deepen your faith and grow your relationship with Christ. You can grab your copy HERE.

Hearing From God

What do you do when faced with a tough decision? How do you handle uncertainties and doubts?

Have you ever forged ahead in an area only to find you landed smack dab in a mess?

The Israelites were a chosen people, rescued from slavery, from the land of Egypt, by God’s mighty hand. Imagine watching the Nile River turn to blood before you. Imagine, with a powerful army behind you, seeing the Red Sea part, allowing you to cross it on dry land, only to see it come crashing back over your enemies.

Again and again, God showed Himself strong and mighty on the Israelites behalf, giving them what they needed at every momentHe sheltered them from the sun’s hot rays by day, and lit their way with a pillar of fire by night.

This God, their God, walked with them, beside them, guiding them every step along the way.

Oh, the trust! The security! The faith the miraculous acts of God must have created.

But then time passed, they forgot all God had done, and they began to forge ahead–only to land smack dab in a mess. Psalm 106 verse 13 says, “Yet how quickly they forgot what He had done! They wouldn’t wait for His counsel!” (NLT).

How, oh how could they have been so foolish? They had access to the living God, the God who had proven His faithfulness again and again, and they squandered this most precious blessing.

But before I grow too smug, I’m reminded of all the times when I’ve done the same. The Bible tells me again and again that God will guide me. That He’ll speak to me, and as His child, I will hear His voice. But then life sideswipes me and I become fearful, or I get busy office-620822_1920and feel I must make a decision regarding something right now!

In those moments, which occur much more frequently than I care to admit, Psalm 106:13 could’ve been written about me.

Why is this? Often, I’m impatient, and in my impatience, negative thinking runs amuck, planting then feeding doubts. What if God doesn’t give me an answer in time? What if He doesn’t answer me at all? Surely if He intended to, He would’ve done so by now.

Other times, I simply go through life on autopilot, relying on my wisdom and living in my strength–not a wise move.

The answer? Slow down. Trust. Listen. And wait, knowing God will guide me toward His best, in His perfect timing. The Bible promises this. In Isaiah 30:21 we’re told, “Your own ears will hear Him. Right behind you a voice will say, ‘This is the way you should go,’ whether to the right or to the left'” (NLT). In John chapter 10, Jesus tells us His sheep, which are those who have a relationship with Him, willrecognize His voice.

I think more often than not, the question is not, Is God speaking? but rather, are we listening. Have we, through time, prayer, and practice, cultivated a listening ear? And do we truly want to hear what God is saying, or have we shut Him out through our lack of surrender?

Other times, I believe God is asking us to wait, and as we wait, to trust–that He will guide us toward His very best, in His way and His timing.

Most times, I believe God has already made His way clear. You may have heard it said that the Bible is man’s roadmap for life; oh, how true that statement is. Throughout bible-1089930_1920its pages, Scripture provides clear and timeless guidelines on everything from how to have a successful marriage to how to manage one’s finances. That, my friend, is God speaking to you. So slow down, open your Bible and your heart, and listen.

Your turn. What are some ways you’ve learned to hear from God? What are some things you believe hinder our ability to hear from Him? Can you share a time when you felt as if God wasn’t listening or responding only to find He revealed His will at the perfect time? Share your thoughts and stories with us because we can all learn from and encourage one another!

Make sure to sign up for my free quarterly emailing. As a thank you gift, subscribers receive a free, 36-lesson Bible study based on 1 Timothy (download link sent separately, in a welcome email). They also receive great content (short stories, devotionals, recipes, and more) sent directly to their inbox each quarter. You can sign up HERE. (You can check out this month's mailing HERE.) 

If you love fiction, check out my latest novel, Restoring Her FaithHERE, and you can preorder my next one, releasing in September, HERE.

And make sure to check out Wholly Loved Ministries' latest release, Drawing Near, a 90-Day Devotional designed to help you deepen your faith and draw your relationship with Christ.

Each day, God beckons us to Himself, calling us to rest in His love and grace. As we do, He heals our hurts, overpowers our fears with love, and restores us to the women He created us to be. This 90-day devotional, written by women who are learning themselves to live anchored in God's grace, will help you deepen your faith and grow your relationship with Christ. You can grab your copy HERE.

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