20140820_KristenWelch_Healing

My thoughts were a million miles away and I didn’t even hear her call my name the first time.

When she said it the second time, I realized I’d been lost in thought.

“Hey, Kristen! How are you?” We were new friends.

On the outside, I had it together. But there was a swirling storm inside. I looked better than I felt.

I was living out my yes to God leading Mercy House. But I was having a hard day. I was tired and overwhelmed. I had more questions than answers and mostly, I felt so alone. I was facing impossibilities and I just wanted to quit.

“How are you?” People ask that question all the time. It’s a greeting, something to fill an awkward pause. But few wait for an answer.

This day, my friend did. She asked and then she waited.

Maybe I was desperate for the waiting. Maybe it was the kind of day where tears just brim. Maybe she really cared.

I believed the last and I decided to tell her exactly how I was doing.

I shared my burden, the struggle, the unknowns. The dark clouds began to clear.

Sometimes healing starts with a question.

I let her in. And she tasted my brokenness. As I wiped my tears and apologized for my awkward answer slash confession, she asked me what I wanted to happen. How did I want God to answer this big question mark in my life?

And so I told her. I confessed a dream I had told few people — a big, impossible dream, a best case scenario answer. I felt silly saying it out loud.

But I also felt bold. Like speaking it meant something.

She listened and then she did something so powerful. She didn’t say, “I’ll pray for you.” She prayed for me. Right there, in a hallway, with people passing by. She grabbed my hands and asked God for the impossible on my behalf.

Nothing changed. But everything was different. I felt like I had let someone in and more importantly, laid the weight of burden down.

That was nearly a year ago.

Last weekend, I saw my friend again for the first time since my hallway blubberfest.

And I got to share the most profound news with her: Just this week, God did the impossible. He answered that big question, the one I was bold enough to ask and she was courageous enough to pray over.

Here’s what happens when we take the time to love each other well:

  • We bear one another’s burdens: I felt lighter, better after that hallway experience. My friend helped me give my burden to God that day.
  • We are reminded we aren’t alone: Some days just asking and waiting is a gift to someone in need. She couldn’t fix my problem, but when I shared it, I wasn’t alone in it. She reminded me that God was with me by praying to Him for an answer.
  • We are invited into the miracles: By letting her into my pain, my need, she got to experience the joy in the miracle.

So. How are you?

Really.

This week if you buy a copy of Lysa Terkerust’s The Best Yes, she’s giving every dime that would normally come to her as an author to a wonderful organization called 99 Balloons. You can learn more about the campaign here, or head to DaySpring to purchase your book now {psst…buy two or more copies and use code BLOOMBOOK at checkout for FREE shipping!}.

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  1. 1

    Kristen,
    How am I doing really? Like you I have a big dream in my heart…one that’s way beyond just one person – namely me. I have a hope for Redeemer Christian School to thrive in a country whose state religion is Islam and less than 1.6% of the population is Christian. I want to see children sold out on Jesus instead of being sold into slavery. But shouldering big dreams brings with it big doubts, big hurdles…I lose sleep thinking about this dream. So how am I really? Tired and in need of encouragement. There I said it. But, when I admit my limits that’s when God can step in and show His great power in my weakness. He’s already been showing me that I can’t do this alone. Thank you for listening…I could, we could, use your prayers.
    Blessings to you and all you do for Mercy House,
    Bev

    • 2
      Beth Williams says:

      Bev,

      Prayers for your dream to come true! If God is in it then nothing can stop it!!!

      Father God,

      Please help Bev and her team build a Christian school in that Islam country. Give them the financial, physical and spiritual resources they need to carry out this mission. Let them know you are right there supporting them!

      AMEN! :)

  2. 3
    Kristen says:

    Bev, thank you for sharing your burden and for being real. I pray that God would give your the strength and the courage to do His will, that you would grow more and more in knowledge, insight, and discernment as you take the steps to fulfilling this dream in your heart. That you would know yourself and know when you need to pull back and just rest in Him. You are a bright light :) .

  3. 4

    Bev I also pray for you and the dream in your hear that The Lord will equip you with the “team power” to bring it to fruition. Lord Jesus hear our prayer, bless Bev and Kristen in their individual quests to do your work, comfort and walk with them, set their minds, spirits at rest in your hands and your plans. Remember us Jesus we love you so very much, make our paths clear, chosen by you so very clear xx IJN Amen.

  4. 6

    #heart :)

  5. 7

    Kristen,

    One of the things I see in this story is that God was right there meeting your need for encouragement through the willing heart of this friend and that is a very special blessing.

    When I get discouraged with my dreams I often pray Isaiah 40:31 and God has always been faithful to renew my strength as I trust and wait on Him. Sometimes that discouragement is as simple as impatience and other times it is more than that but He picks me up and keeps me going in His strength and not my own.

  6. 8

    I too have a dream,someplace for homeless women who have been dumped by spouses to live grow and flourish in Gods love in NE San Antonio.i even have a location.but I don’t know how to go about it.prayers please,as I am one of those women,living in a domicillary with addicts who are actually favored.
    women who’ve stayed clean and straight need love too!

    • 9

      Lord, we lift Cindy’s request to you right now. We know that your heart is with those who have been abused by those very ones who should love and protect them. We ask that you would open doors and put people in Cindy’s path to help her accomplish your work. We pray for those women and children who are hurting from the betrayal and ask that they would turn their hearts toward You and receive healing emotionally, spiritually, perhaps even physically. Lord I know full well how hard it is to get back on your feet after such a time…but I also know full well that you are faithful and the giver of good gifts. Thank you that you have gone on before Cindy to pave the way for your will to be done. We ask all these things in your holy and precious name Jesus. Amen.

    • 10
      Beth Williams says:

      Father,

      I lift up Cindy and her dreams to you now! Help these women to know your love. Give Cindy the financial, spiritual resources she needs to accomplish this task. Shower her and the other women with your love, grace and mercy!

      I ask in Jesus name!@ :)

  7. 11

    How am I really? I am doing very well. Today that is ;-) It could be very different with me tomorrow. A main life struggle of mine. And I dream too but I am open handed to God and keep asking Him what His dream is for me. I feel stuff is around the corner and at the same time I have no clue. I so desire ‘my thing’ in life. Does that makes sense?

    • 12
      Alli Ambrose says:

      This makes complete sense Hope as I feel the same way. On this emotional roller coaster, one day up and the next so very down. I too feel as if my “God-plan” is waiting just around the corner to be revealed….but at the same time I have no-clue. So I understand exactly where you are. Lord please be with Hope today, give her a glimmer of what you may have in store for her. We know that your promises are just that and that you never back away from them Help us to remember this in our darkest times so we can be your shining light to this hurting world. Please give Hope a sense of your peace….that you’ve got this and that she doesn’t have just some random part but is designed specially by you for your purpose. She is unique and a precious gift to your world. I pray this is your most Holy name Lord. Amen.

  8. 13

    Love this post. I feel like I am pretty good at giving encouragement…but not good at ALL at RECEIVING it. But those times when I’ve let people in and shared my heart have been some of the most soul-refreshing times of my life. When we do this, it not only lightens our burdens, it makes us more relatable to others. Thank you for this reminder.

  9. 14

    Cindy, my burden too. No where to go with it right now, but praying. So many precious sisters. Abused & dumped but no where to go. These and their children need hope. My burden to see that happen has also been grown in my first hand experience.

  10. 15

    Wonderful post. So many layers here – the encouragement we need to not always look like we have it altogether, but to be real and vulnerable and let someone in so we can share what is truly on our hearts, even when it shows we are human and don’t have all the answers. To remember to ask others how they are doing and sincerely want to know. I had a pastoral liaison who would occasionally come to my full time job with a bag of Wendy’s and a question. How are YOU doing? Not the ministry. YOU. How can I pray for you, what can I do for you? It was a tremendous blessing for someone to remember that as much as the ministry I lead is my passion and purpose, I also have to deal with life circumstances like everyone else – I am not one dimensional. It is a reminder to pray on the spot – something I started doing a while back. A friend asks for prayer – in person, via email, on FB – they don’t get “prayers coming your way” as a response. They get my verbal or typed out intersession for them right then and there – and that helps to jog my memory down the road to CONTINUE to pray for them because I had an experience of prayer to recall and not just a fleeting promise often forgotten even if unintentional. And yes!! Getting to share in the joy of the miracle!! This bolsters OUR faith too when we can see the answer to prayer and how God has worked something out. Blessings to you!

  11. 16
    Lovelle says:

    I loved this! It’s all in God’s timing and it’s so great that you had a friend to help you through it. Congratulations!

  12. 17

    How am I really feeling? I would love some time with my son. I’m so tired of balancing him between work and other demands. I would love to just be at home, just be his mom with only his father to interfere. I’m tired of stressing sicknesses, holidays, etc. I wish I could just be home. Be a mom.

  13. 18

    Rhodora,
    I am lifting prayers to God for you right now. Please know that God loves you and sees you as His perfect daughter. The best is yet to come for you, dare to dream big.
    Now, how am I (really?). I have hope for my health. That is my big dream. That this fibromyalgia go away, and let me live a healthy life. I am in pain all the time.

  14. 19

    Kristen, I can so relate to feeling this way. Praise Jesus for friends like yours who embrace us, blubberfest and all :) Blessings… Lysa

  15. 20

    I’m not exactly sure how I’m doing. 3 1/2 weeks ago my baby boy, who was 18, was killed in an accident at work. His tractor went over a 65 ft bank and into the river.
    Some days I miss him so much I feel like I’m not gonna make it, but I just keep telling myself that God has a plan in all this. I’d appreciate all the prayers I can get for me, my 21 yr old son, and the rest of the family and his friends as we struggle to get through this time.

    • 21

      I am so very sorry Mary. Sometimes it is difficult to trust Him. So many things don’t make sense to us while we are here in this world. I can only imagine your heartache and how devastating this is for you and your family. I just know one thing for sure – HE LOVES YOU and He loves your baby boy.

    • 22
      Beth Williams says:

      Mary

      Soo super sorry for the loss of your beloved son! Life doesn’t always make sense and neither does God. Know that Jesus is here with you grieving, helping you to overcome this.

      Father,

      Please be with Mary, family, and friends of her son who was killed in an accident. Shower them with your love & peace. Help them during this grieving time. Put your loving arms around them all & let them know it will be ok.

      Blessings :)

  16. 23

    Mary,
    I am so sorry for you devastating loss. I can’t imagine what you’re going thru. But Jesus is there even here in this heartbreaking place. Praying for you today. And thanks for sharing how you are really doing so we can join you in praying.

  17. 24
    Jessi Vacca says:

    Hi, I never have commented but I have a big dream and all the prayers help. I’m working on a childrens book dealing with HIV/AIDS. My dad has had AIDS for 10 yrs now due to a chance encounter with a tainted needle…and there is not a single book introducing the topic to children, I’ve looked for my son. So I am in the process of writing and illustrating one. The publishing process intimidates the crap out of me, but I know this is something God wants me to do. This illness affects children everywhere first hand and second hand via someone they love dealing with it. So it only makes sense to have a book that’s on their level. All prayers and advice are welcome!

  18. 25

    Wow, so many needs, so many women and so many dreams. Reading about the different women answering the calls on their lives makes my heart sing! Right now, I am packing to move back to San Diego from Mobile, AL to work with women who are pregnant when arrested. I will work with them while they are pregnant, serving their time and up to three years after their release. God has allowed me to do it on a small scale years ago, He wants hurting women reached….here I go!! I have said ‘yes’. Do I know where I will live? No, I only know the area I known and love as home, Ocean Beach, a small community in San Dirgo. How will I find a small house to rent with four dogs, several cats and a bird? I do not know, however I can not live with this burden in my heart anymore without doing something about it now. So I will sell my house at a deeply discounted price, shed most everything in this four bedroom, two bath and head out in about ten weeks to stand and say, “I am here Lord, use me”. I do not know what else to do, I can not, not go. I ask like the rest of the women, please say a prayer when you think of me, so many things to work out and do. Blessings on everyone who reaches outside of themselves and speaks up. We are here to love, support, speak words of encouragement and pray for each other.

  19. 26

    What an incredible outpouring of needs and prayers this post has generated! Your friends question of how you wanted God to answer is what stuck with me. What a great reply, chased by prayer!!

  20. 27
    Krystal says:

    I’m praying for those who have suffered loss and pray for good health to all of Gods daughters. How am I doing? I’m getting married in 3 weeks to a man I’ve loved for 10 years. I’m terrified because I can’t wait to be a mother, but I have PCOS and have recently miscarried. I feel like a failure. I don’t know what would happen if I couldn’t get pregnant. I need to be a mom. It’s my calling. I’m a preschool teacher and a nanny. Being a mom is who I am, but I’m afraid my body has a different plan.

    • 28

      Krystal, I am so sorry for your loss! I want to tell you that you are not a failure. Not now, not ever! No matter what happens next, and no matter what happens in your life or what you do in your life, no matter how big mistakes you ever do, YOU are not a failure, and will never become one in God’s eyes.

      Jesus died for you, and God allowed it(sent him, actually), because they both love you so much. Because they want to be with you. They want you to share your life with them because they long to connect with you every day, every minute.

      If being a mom really is what God has called you to, then He will give you a child to mother. Because nothing is impossible for God. Because He cares for his children, and if you let him guide you and lead you, His plan for you will come true. God does not care what plan your body has, he won’t be stopped by that. God has a better plan for you than you could ever imagine, and won’t be stopped by your body or anything else to make that plan come true, as long as you let Him.

      Remember Sarah? God promised her a boy, and she got a boy, even though she was WAY too old to get children. She had to wait for God’s timing, but God held His promise.

      I pray that God will help you understand and help you see that you are not a failure, that you never have to worry about that. I pray that He will make your dream and His plan come true. Let his will be done in your life. I pray that you will be given the courage, joy, energy, happiness and strength to go through with the wedding(I know how much work it can be the last weeks before the wedding), that you can enjoy it fully that day, and may He bless your marriage! God bless you, Krystal, you and your husband.

      Virtual hug from Ava Sophie <3

    • 29
      Beth Williams says:

      Krystal,

      If God truly wants you to be a mom then He will make it happen. It may not be right away–maybe after a few years of marriage. Remember this God loves you soo much He only wants the best for you!

      Jeremiah 29:11 is my life verse: “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord. “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you”. “To give you a hope and a future”. Have patience my sister in Christ!

  21. 30

    Cindy,

    God has put this same dream in my heart. Please email me…maybe we could make some progress together! Corricorey@gmail.com.

  22. 31

    I am really good today, for the first time in a few weeks! And all because I was met yesterday the same way you described here! It is power in those words, friend! It is power in listening to people that way, and it is power in asking that question AND waiting for the response, ready to listen to how he/she really is!

    I’ve been okay several times the last few weeks, even though they have been really hard, but last night and today is the first time I am really good since three weeks ago. Because my friend asked me how I really was and because she listened. She didn’t have the right answers, and she didn’t have much to say, but she listened, she said she was right here with me, that I am not alone, and reminded me of Jesus’ love. And that is powerful. I think I can be so bold to say that it is more powerful that giving the answer to my question. Because knowledge and answers is not always the most important.

    I also believe in praying for people right there and then instead of saying and promising that we WILL pray. Act right away! Give it to God right away.

    Thank you for asking, and thank you for sharing the story with us! God bless you even more, and congratulation with your dream come true!
    -Ava Sophie

  23. 32

    Cindy,
    Keep me abreast too. I have a related background went back to school and am now working in a treatment center helping women in need, addicts and many who have suffered abuse or attacks. I’m in Illinois. We have a place called WINGS that might be a good prototype for you.
    Beth MAMFT
    gbeth99@gmail.com

  24. 33
    Ticelli says:

    Kristen,
    nice post! indeed many times i feel when pple ask how are you, they are not sincere in listening to ab answer. for me i am really overwhelmed with ny new job bht each time someone asks, i would say i m fine. i fear that i will irritate others by sharing my burdens.
    but yr post has inspired me to want to the person to listen to others and to share in their life journey with God. thank you

  25. 34

    TIcelli,
    I understand how you feel. New job and feeling overwhelmed. I find that when I go to bed praying and reading my Bible, and wake up and do the same. Asking God to work through me because He is the Creator of the world, then I go in, pronouncing blessing on everyone and usually have a great day. I when I don’t, I give it to God anyway to teach me again. I often think Lord, please change my co-workers, but I end up confessing, God change me. Make me an example of Your love and grace.
    How am I feeling? Really..angry because I am doing a re-finance to clear my debts and my HOA is taking a long time to produce info i need for my credit union. My 50th birthday is in 11 days. My closing should have been last Friday. But God is good and I am touched by reading these posts and being confident that God is able.
    So very encouraged by everyone sharing and my heart breaks for Mary especially. My daughter is almost 18. I already prayed for you. That you can give back to God his great gift to you. And ask God to hug your son and let him know you love and miss him.
    Be blessed in Jesus Name.

  26. 35
    Beth Williams says:

    Kristen,
    Just absolutely loved this post! I have read a few other posts like this.

    I am like the friend you met. I want to know really know how you are today. Yes stand there and cry on my shoulder. I will encourage you and pray for you right there in front of God and the world. I love intimate friendships with people. If I dare ask How are you–Then tell me!

    How am I? Today fine. This year has been tough. Moved father into assisted living, had medication issues landed in hospital & rehab. Now back at assisted living & liking it. Hubby about lost job & I work a job I don’t like much! I know God is in Control of this world.

    Blessings :)

  27. 36
    Tammy Corn says:

    How am I? It probably would take me hours to really let someone know. I voluntarily resigned from a job that I had for the past 8-1/2 years a few weeks ago, due to unfair treatment from a mean unsaved boss that made the environment such a negative place. I am also trying to find another job and the stress and worry about that has been unnerving to say the least and very hard at times.

    Please pray for me that God’s strength will help me endure the “waits” and the possible “no” that I may receive from Him with respect to thinking that I would be offered a certain job, but only receive silence. He has given me the resources to take care of my needs for a while though, and I am truly thankful for that. I know that He loves me and will always give me His best, its just hard not feeling like I am a failure right now. Please pray for me.

    Tammy

  28. 37

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