About the Author

Emily P. Freeman is a writer who creates space for souls to breathe. She is the author of four books, including her most recent release, Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World. She and her husband live in North Carolina with their twin daughters and twinless son.

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  1. Emily,

    This is such a beautiful post. Recently, I started following you over at Chatting at the Sky and I admire your honesty and vulnerability.

    This is the perfect exercise to engage in as we approach Christmas and the end of 2014. This year has been filled with twists and turns, ups and downs and through it all, the Lord has been right there beside me. He has planted Himself right in the midst of my messy, beautiful life. Over the past few months, I’ve been in a season of waiting. It has been extremely difficult, but God has used this time to draw me nearer to Him.

    I lost a friendship this year. A friendship that I truly cherished. One that lasted almost half my life. I am truly disappointed in how that situation turned out. But God also revealed to me why that relationship wasn’t the best for me. I still struggle in accepting it. But I am getting there.

    I am truly thankful for my health. I faced a life-threatening illness 2 years ago and I am now fully recovered. So, so grateful for life.

    I have been looking for a job for over a year now and I get frustrated at times. But I am so happy that I have grown closer to God during this free time. God works in mysterious ways and I believe that this was His plan all along. I was too busy with my previous job and I wasn’t putting in my God time.

    While I am a bit anxious about what the new year holds, I am fixing my gaze on the one who holds the future! I am looking forward to the wonderful gifts He has in store for me in 2015!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family,

    Donna

  2. Emily,
    What great questions to use to get a reading on where my life really is right now…Sometimes I think we are afraid to get up close and personal with ourselves.

    A brief summary…I am excited to be celebrating our first Christmas as husband and wife this year…what a blessing this year has been! Feeling oh so happy!

    My heart yearns for my prodigal son to come back into the fold…I get anxious when I examine the what ifs too closely. I hope and I pray and I trust…but there is a bitter sweetness about what is right now.

    I have wonderful friends standing beside me. God has blessed me with the gift of women with whom I can share the good, the bad and the ugly and yet, they still love me. Praise!

    I am joyful over the orphans I work with in Pakistan getting to experience their first Christmas with gifts ever. I am excited about the love of Jesus being shown to them through Redeemer Christian School…yet I worry about funding and where the money will come from to keep the doors open. I tread unknown ground as God calls me to something way bigger than myself.

    I could go on…but that’s a snapshot. Also SO very thankful for my sisters-in-Christ at (in)courage…may you all be blessed with a joyous Advent and Christmas season!!

    Love and blessings,
    Bev

  3. Good Tuesday Morning!

    Thank you Emily for the reminder to pause and reflect upon all of the blessings and crosses in life. It is wonderful to be able to allow God to create peace and serenity in all times of our lives. Happy and Peaceful Holidays to all!

  4. I haven’t given myself the space to answer these questions in a long time. I think I need to create a quiet moment to do so today. Thanks as always for helping me see better, Emily:)

  5. It is a GREAT practice and those questions are really good! THANKS! I do something similar each month. As a matter of fact, today is my day to answer my own set of questions!!!!

  6. Dear Emily. Thank you. This Tuesday, I will use your unwrapping to begin this story that God has placed on my heart. My story. I’ve started so many times but could never write it. This week I received a bucket load of grace which has given me understanding and perspective and courage to really write it. I will begin here with you’re unwrapping. Today. Thank you for the direction. Pray for me. <3

  7. I first heard your message about Tuesdays at Allume. I’ve thought of it every Tuesday since. Your words make such a difference, my friend, such a difference.

  8. This is good and I was reminded of one of my favorite quotes: “The required cheerfulness that characterizes many of our churches produces a suffocating environment of pat, religious answers to the painful, complex questions that riddle the lives of hurting people. This culture of mandatory happiness actually promotes dishonesty and more suffering.” Tullian Tchividjian

    I’m learning in my recovery program what it means to bring all of me, the real me, to the table. It feels good to take masks off that have been plastered on my face for years. Yes, it is painful, but so freeing ..and by doing that I invite others to be real too.

  9. Thanks for the blog and questions! I’m unwrapping some guilt and anxiety here–Christmas can be a tough time for me. My adult children are not living near me and I am grateful for this as their lives are chaotic and messy and far from how they were raised. So as THE DAY approaches, so do their expectations for financial aid–which is not forthcoming. In the past, my mother was able to help me balance these emotions and assist in the Christmas visits. She passed away in 2013, and I still miss her a great deal.

    On the other hand, I’m so thankful and grateful for my wonderful job, amazing women co-workers (they are amazing and I’m not slighting men–we just don’t have any in our office!) and great friends outside work. I have a wonderful, loving husband who is committed to Christ, a beautiful home, and my health. God is good–more than I deserve.

    Thank you again.

  10. Thank you for this message on this Tuesday and I am so thankful for the messages of love, faith, and hope i receive in my e-mail from all of you. God has given me a long life of happiness. sadness, trials, and storms, but was always there lifting us up. These words on Tuesday makes me so thankful for all of my blessings!
    Love and Blessings for a MERRY CHRISTMAS,
    Emily H. Lucas

  11. This is a great practice! I seldom take time to reflect; I just keep barreling ahead through life. But I do recognize when thing begin to irritate me, and I don’t like to admit that I can be irritated! Thank you for the permission to take a step back and think about the source of those feelings. It seems to me that practice would make life more sacred. I want to live a more intentinal life. What better way to start!

    Thank you for your post.

  12. Yes, I was doing the same thing about 2:30 am PDT. I lost my job a week ago. I’ve been thinking about my last Christmas with my Mom, how she did all the Christmasy stuff, but wasn’t there for me. I want to be the, “I’m here for you person,” even if I don’t do any Christmasy stuff. I have three grown daughters and I want them to say, “She listens, she takes time, she doesn’t always understand, but she listens.”

    Shalom from my mother’s heart

  13. Oh. Emily. I just read your Chatting post and then clicked on over to here.

    I just want to breathe all of this in and exhale stillness. In the hustle and bustle of this season – even for those of us who intentionally reject the full frenzy it could be – our souls can still get trampled.

    Our own moments here are full of hope and also loss, brimming with good gifts and also aching with unresolved pain. And you’re right that it all needs unwrapping. Thank you for always reminding me to tend to the matters of the soul, not as indulgence but as necessity. {And after all of these years, I still need reminding.}

  14. I love the way you lead us gently, opening our eyes to those invisible parts of our souls and lives we gloss over. You are a straight up gift from heaven.

    Beautiful, beautiful post.

    xoxo

  15. 4 1/2 months ago, I lost my dear friend, former nanny to my children, and my best friends’ mother all wrapped up in one incredible person. She fought a quick battle with ovarian cancer, and bravely lost. Exactly 2 weeks after her funeral, my own 87 year old mother came down with a very aggressive infection and we weren’t sure she would survive it. The past 4 months have been a whirlwind of hospital visits, nursing homes, appointments, errands, caring for 2 houses, paying bills and being the primary caregiver on top of my full time job AND my first semester back at college. I am incredibly grateful and proud to say that yesterday she spent the night back in her own bed, fully healed, at home. Getting to sit at her dining room table and eat supper with my siblings, looking at my mother, I was reminded to breathe it all in and enjoy each day given. Your post is a wonderful reminder to slow down and fully enjoy every moment I can.

  16. I love the idea of this practice and see where it would be so valuable. I so relate in the area of not realizing my need until I am in the middle of a crazy lady spiral (from your post on your blog). As always thank you for your thought…so helpful and encouraging.

  17. I am sad this Tuesday that there is evil in this world that seems to go unfettered with no justice for the victims. I am sad this Tuesday for all the times that no one takes the risk to stand up for or beside the righteous. I am sad this Tuesday for all the trust that has had a continuing beating for many years. Through all this, I am happy this Tuesday for the love and trust I have found wrapped in the arms of our YHVH Go’el.

  18. Oh my I like that list of questions – I so often find the weight of the mixture of all these presses in on me – it can be such a roller coaster of emotions. I relate to that waking up moment you mention when the day ahead and the day behind drop on me – mmmm – I’m off to do some pondering. Thank you again

  19. Oh I loved this. So real.
    God reminds me that He is with me through angels and miracles. They are often not dramatic, but obviously not coincidence! When a song comes on the radio, when a friend calls when I’m in tears, or when I am prompted to reach out to someone. His power whispers “I am here, and I am orchestrating. Trust Me.” Then, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!
    Amen!

  20. Thank you for your beautiful prompting…

    This Tuesday finds me unwrapping mixed emotions. I have just had my first, Christian children’s picture book published – Incredible Intimidation. I have such great joy within…God told me 2 years ago that I would have joy like I’ve never known…He was right and dreams really do come true. But I also have this anxious tug in the middle of my joy…I’m awaiting the arrival of my author copy, I’ve seen it in digital galley proof, but have yet to hold it in my hands, and I’m taking orders and trying to believe for a quota and hoping for success, I’m planning my launch and thumbing through the pages of my mind deciding what to share in testimony to the Great God who lead me, inspired me, and gave me this story and my life, which is the story. And then in the practical moments…there’s washing and cleaning and baking to be done…Christmas is coming, He is coming. What a beautiful Tuesday it is.
    Blessings.

  21. What am I anxious about? The way my stress is mounting and seeping out in ugly ways to those I love.
    What am I excited about? The way that this stress is drawing me near to Jesus and His sufficiency- as He alone can help unwind this tightly wound gal.
    The anxiousness and excitement mix together in a strange brew of fear and hope.
    Thank you for your post and transparency Emily and for welcoming us in to this ordinary Tuesday where extraordinary grace is present.:)

  22. Four years ago, when I entered blogging world and started writing for real, Tuesdays Unwrapped and Multitude Mondays were the two things that kept me going. it’s funny how just four years in this fast-paced world can become so nostalgic…

    – ringing Christmas with friends growing stronger across oceans & cultures
    – a son so grown up and all day in another language learning
    – a daughter who is delighted she is ‘just like her mama’ even if that ‘just like’ is bossy & control-freak…ish 😉
    – dreams I can’t even begin to understand…a God calling to bigger, greater sight of Him amidst the truth of how small I am…a calling shaping that is utterly overwhelming, humbling & God-sized
    – the new face of Noel without mama, now stringing to 13…& still, the joy & hope rise…
    – friends who open souls to breathe…

    <3

  23. Thank you Emily! A beautiful Tuesday for me. Good news about my son Michael’s eye appointment this morning. He had a tumor on the eye ball removed this year that was malignant. His doctor has him come every three months since the surgery to check it but she told him today that after the next three month appointment in 2015 he would only have to come for a check up every six months. Sounds like good news. Please everyone please pray for his full recovery. Thank you Emily Freeman for giving me the opportunity to THANK THE LORD JESUS CHRIST this Tuesday.for ALL my many blessings. Merry Christmas everyone. God bless you. Love, Frances Bouchillon

  24. Great post Emily! Thank you for sharing.
    I’m excited about the opportunity I had to have met Mark in January.
    I’m anxious over Mark’s brokenness that overwhelm him and he distance himself. I don’t hear from him during those dark days. It has become a battle.
    I feel lonely relationally. I miss my friendship with Mark.
    I’m celebrating the blessing to have met Mark. ( yes I am). You see I’ve been asking God to meet some one for a long time. And Mark came.
    Now having met Mark and everything that is happening has bought me closer to God. I’m asking I’m knocking and I’m seeking God. And I get to pray for Mark every day.
    I’m thankful for the relationship I have with God my Father through Christ Jesus. I’m grateful for Jesus being with me in my mess and that God is able to redeem it.
    All praise to Almighty God who raises the dead!
    For He has blessed me with two wonderful best friends along with praying women from my church who pray with me every Sunday after worship. These ladies are all standing with me. God bless each one, richly!
    Not seeing or hearing from Mark has me disappointed. I wish he would trust me to be there for him during the dark days.
    I see hope in Jesus. Because on the right day in the right place at the right time Jesus was born. I believe God knew exactly what He was doing when He orchestrated me and Mark to meet. He has a plan for Mark’s life and He has a plan for my life.
    So I wait in quiet hope for help from God.

  25. Thank you Emily for this sweet pause for reflection on my Tuesday. As I reflect today, I am reminded that I’ve been given grace for THIS moment. I have several pressing items that demand my attention but I will appropriately use the grace God has extended and not squander it on cares for tomorrow.

  26. Emily, Your posts are like a breath of fresh air to me. as are your two books I’ve read. I’m excited that you are coming out with another book. I love your idea of Tuesdays. Thoughtful Tuesday, I think I’ll call it. Or Thankful Tuesdays. I so needed to hear your words today. I need to stop in the busyness that is. Christmas and be present in the little moments and thank God for the ordinary days. I know what a blessing they are.

  27. Thanks so much for that list of questions. I wrote them in front of my journal and plan to use them. as a busy mom I get stuck internalizing things but I’m an extrovert who needs to express my thoughts. This may even be a good tool for my husband and I to use to help connect! Thanks.

  28. Lovely, as always, Emily. Thank you. This week, I’ve been wrestling with some of the uglier, more insecure pieces of myself. They rise up every once in a while and make me miserable for a few days. Saying them out loud sometimes helps, so I’ve been doing that. And that simple act somehow lessens their power over me. A good Tuesday practice, I think.

  29. Thank you for this, so easy to run from facing ourselves to love and care for our souls in the way we care for others. God help us to examine our lives and may your Holy Spirit prune restore and flourish us to His Glory!! .. Help us truly understand your intention for our living under your love and grace! We are in battle with “opposite world” and sometimes overwhelmed with heartbreak to the core of our being and disappointment but we cling to Gods promises to see us through.

  30. I really enjoyed reading your post today, which is Wednesday. As I work on Tuesday, Wednesday would be my day to reflect. I had easy answers for most of the questions but the one that made me pause was the question asking who am I standing up for? I had to stop and think about that one. In my case, I think it is those who I lift up for salvation on a daily basis, and those who I lay before the Lord regularly to be drawn back into His fold; those who have chosen to pull away. Thank you for sharing these thought provoking questions with us.

  31. Hi Emily,

    I really enjoyed reading your post today, a reminder that the Lord is always with us in our ordinary moments, I am retired (early) and I am building a home down south, a friend needed some financial help and I loaned it to her, now I am having problems getting the money back and I need to finsh our home, but I can say that through time I have drawn closer to God, he is faithful, and he never leaves us because he came to be with us.

    Merry Christmas

  32. Emily,
    It’s not Tuesday. I just now read your post. It has grabbed my being at the very core of my existence this year. Many blessings are mine but I seem to push back and not talk about my losses, the sadness that envelopes my soul at times and the cries of my heart that are so deep that tears cannot come. I am going to take up your thoughts and embrace them, using them to let God speak to my fears and bring hope that only can come from Him. Thank you so much for sharing your heart. You have gifted mine this Christmas! May God’s blessings continue to flow in and through you as you minister in His name!

  33. Emily,

    Great post! So true that God came down into our broken messy world to be with us~!
    It’s not Tuesday-rather Friday. Your post speaks volumes. I could not have lived this year without God and His unfailing love! It has been a tough year for me with my aging father’s health issues and my own work issues.

    What am I excited about? Time off for Christmas Vacation

    What am I anxious over? My father & is ailing health including dementia

    Where do I feel lonely? At work sometimes

    What am I celebrating? Christmas, my dad in good health for now, family, my wonderful hubby!

    For what am I thankful? My dad’s good health, his living in assisted living, family, health, jobs–mostly that Christ came down to be with us!

    Who is standing with me? My friends and family

    Who am I standing up for? My dad, American Cancer Society

    What has disappointed me? Work. My job has changed and I don’t feel that useful.

    Where do I see hope? Job possibilities, my wonderful hubby, & mostly God!