About the Author

Jen encourages women to embrace both the beauty and bedlam of their everyday lives at BeautyandBedlam.com. A popular speaker, worship leader, and author of Just Open the Door: How One Invitation Can Change a Generation, Jen lives in North Carolina with her husband, five children, and a sofa for anyone...

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  1. Jen,
    I did have to chuckle because, I too, had a window that remained cracked for quite some time due to an errant golf ball. I have many reminders around my house that serve to remind me and my grown children of wisdom based on feelings vs. Biblical truth. I have a hole and a water stained mark in my kitchen ceiling that is waiting for my son to pay to have fixed. Instead of not obeying his parents, he and his friends would sneak out onto the flat roof outside his bedroom window and hang out there under the stars. Their continual weight caused the roof to leak – right into my kitchen area. When my son gets “wise” ideas, I point to the hole in the ceiling.

    Thanks, Jen, for having the boldness and conviction to stand up for Christians not “soft serving” scripture. What was meant to be a sword has been dulled into a butter knife. I needed the reminder to stay fixed on the Truth!

    Blessings,
    Bev

    • Bev – cracked window women unite! That is too funny. Those boys of ours, we gotta love them. 😉

      Thank you for your continual encouragement. It’s hard to yield against the enemy with a butter knife, yet that’s what too many are choosing. I needed my own reminder.

      Blessings to your family this New Year.

    • Bev,

      Awesome way to put it!!! We have dulled the Word into a butter knife. I am hoping that 2014 becomes my year of making sure that it remains as it should: a sharp Sword of Truth.

      Jen,

      I am trying to put the butter knife away. Thanks for sharing this, it was much needed!!

  2. Jen, this is such a timely word. I appreciate your willingness to speak the truth and remind us to measure wisdom by the authority of Gods word, rather than our own thoughts and feelings about it. Thank you for standing boldly for truth. Love to you, my friend.

    • Thank you, sweet friend – it’s a challenging time, for sure and it’s so easy to let our feelings rule our decision making.
      Sometimes I’d rather just turn and run rather than confront and when I had to look my dear friend in the eyes and say, “I love you and you will always be a dear friend, but I can not stand by or agree with your decision,” it was so much more painful for her than me.

  3. Thank you Jennifer for standing firmly on the Truth. I always enjoy hearing from you. You are inspiring to me in this crazy world! Blessings to you!!

  4. In college I traveled to Arizona with a youth group, and on our bus trip I heard Steven Curtis Chapman’s song, “Burn the Ships.” It tells the story of the explorer Cortez who’s men began to complain and worry about their hard life in the new land. He ordered the ships burned to prevent them from deserting and returning to their old life. Chapman likens it to our walk with Christ–“no turning back” as another old song says.

    I was convicted of a pattern of sin in my life and knew I needed to “burn the ships.” I asked the Lord for a reminder of my commitment, and there in the middle of the Arizona desert, in a gift shop, I found a pair of sterling silver ship earrings. I bought them.

    Sadly, I continued to stumble in that area, and ironically, I lost one of the earrings.

    I still have the other one. It serves as a reminder that God takes our sin and our commitments seriously. He also lavishes grace, and leaves reminders that though we stumble, because He lived and died in our place, we are not utterly cast away.

  5. Well-written and convicting. If that tangible reminder reminds your son as well as it reminds you, I would have it framed (maybe a frame within a frame? – shattered glass around the ball-within a box frame- such as is mounted for a desk top) and give it to him to keep always. A reminder we don’t know better 🙂 You could have Prov 37:1 mounted behind the ball.

  6. I love this because first of all I am guilty of being wise in my own eyes, but also because it calls us to remember Who the ultimate authority is. It’s really, really hard to stand up for what you know is right when everyone tells you that you are being judgmental or intolerant. But it is entirely possible to stand up for the truth AND be loving and merciful. We don’t have to compromise truth ever.

  7. LOVE this blog! I completely agree that Truth is being watered down. I am up for the challenge to stand firm in God’s Truth and obey him in the hard things. I have a long way to go, but it’s my desire to live a life of obedience…no compromising or feeling the need to worry about being politically correct. I do have a physical reminder in my home that obedience to God is the only way to live a life of peace: a painting I painted 20 years ago after a bout of disobedience that sent my world into a state of chaos. And I mean CHAOS. It’s a daily reminder that I am not wise; GOD IS. Life is messy. Only Jesus can clean it up. And He did this for me. LOVE that God taught me this lesson!

  8. What a challenging story. As a momma of two little ones, I find myself daily struggling with the foundation of my actions and teachings that my husband and I are trying to share with our children. My desperate prayer is that we are able to raise them to see God in who we are and that they would understand the truth of His word as we attempt to understand it, as well. This desire for them to know Christ drives me to know Christ even more.

    My physical reminder is a small rock that sits on my desk. On it reads “looking forward” and it’s a reminder of my life verse, Philippians 3:13. I am a person who literally holds on to every negative memory I’ve ever experienced…even if the memory isn’t that big of a deal. So having this rock on my desk reminds me that I can’t change what has happened, but with God’s strength I can focus on what lies ahead and the prize He has called me to.

  9. Jen,

    Superb post! It is about time that Christians unite and stand up for what is right. If we don’t stand for something we will fall for anything our lame, turkey president & congress try to pass onto us.

    My song for this Christmas was “It’s Called Christmas with a Capital C” By Big Fish. It states “You can call it something else but that’s not what it will be–it’s about the birth of Christ and you can’t take that away!”

    I am purpose driven lately to make sure Christ is known and that I show Christ in all I do and say. I want to shine like him and show the world the truth! I’m in no way wise in my own eyes! He is the author of my story!

    Have a blessed New Year’s celebration and a great 2014! 🙂

  10. Thank you for sharing Jennifer, and I could’nt agree with you more….and continue to share the thoughts the Holy Spirit impresses on your mind 🙂

    Love and blessings
    Lisette

  11. Thank you, Jen, for sharing. I have come to a place in my life where I am finally able to just love people for who they are rather than judge them for their beliefs. It saddens me to see America turning on the very principles and foundation it was born upon. As Christians, our voice is more important today than it has ever been before. We are truly under spiritual warfare daily. Being a living example is of utmost importance, but I fear it is no longer enough. Posts like yours remind me that I am not alone and we all have a voice.

    Amy

  12. Timely sharing of truth. I am now inspired to sharpen my knowledge and pray even more than before, about wisdom in sharing God’s truth and not my version of His truth.

  13. Oh, how I need a huge does of that Godly wisdom! So often, I am seeking wisdom, and then–I feel roadblocked and sidetracked and exhausted! Thanks fo rthe reminder that when we take the easy way out, and settle for being ‘wise’ in our own eyes, we actually short-change ourselves with a poor substitute for God’s wisdom.
    What a great New Year’s prayer I have now!

  14. The #1 temptation of man is pride. It’s the enemy’s specialty. In the last year I have found new life in humility. In admitting that I don’t know anything! Lol. In admitting that the only reason there is any wisdom in me at all is because the Holy Spirit resides there! Also, the peace that comes when we realize we don’t have to be wise, is intoxicating.
    Great post. My symbol just may be a print of his to read when I get off track. 😉

  15. Thank you, thank you for sharing this. My feelings get in the way of so much and I know God is working on me in this area. I don’t want to be politically correct, I want to be correct in following my Father. I’m so thankful for His grace and mercy and the amazing Spirit that continues to guide me.

  16. Love it! I have 2 holes in the wall my daughter left. Was painting another bedroom this past summer when my youngest daughter came running up to me very upset about something she did. Since I was in the middle of something, I said I needed to finish what I was doing( and take a breath of Jesus) before I went and see what the problem was. When I finally got there, I saw I her crying hysterically on the bed and 2 holes in the wall. The “breath of Jesus” definitely helped because all I could do is just laugh. I mentioned that it was obviously a horrible flip because the holes were so uneven and laughed even more. Yes, this out of character for me. I’ve always been the screamer first and listen second. She punished herself enough without me, I didn’t need to do anything. I hope I could always remember to take that breath before I speak and focus on what is truely important.

  17. Jen, these are wise, wise words. We had one of those cracked window lessons in our girls’ bedroom; we switched it out with a window in the basement, but we need to replace it, too!