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(in)courage is a place where authentic, brave women connect deeply with God and others. In the middle of your unfine moments and ordinary days, you are invited to become a woman of courage.

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  1. (in)courage,

    Okay….I’ll go first….I wish I could say I don’t feel this way but I still try to please people. I’ve always been a people pleaser and it really gets to me when people get upset with me or flat out don’t like me….it’s the kind of stuff that will keep me awake in the middle of the night. Why do I feel this way when I KNOW I only need to truly please One person and live for an audience of One?? Is there a group like “People Pleasers Anonymous”??
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Blessings Bev, I’m in your audience…. I have craved a friend that I can connect with. I have not found anybody that loves the Lord as I do. Shoot at this point I will take a simple believer. I just cannot connect to women that judge, it hurts my soul, but I will continue to try because our Savior believes in all of us! Live my faith and move mountains.
      Blessings to all, Lyn

      • Hi Lyn,
        One thing I had to try was inviting a few women over for coffee – either a small group or one on ones with people I thought I would connect with….maybe someone I briefly met at church, or someone in my neighborhood, etc. You can kind of sense if people have a relationship with the Lord or not. I had to be prepared to meet with rejection (which did happen), but I kept having to put myself out there, joining women’s groups at church, Bible studies, inviting women over. It was almost like a “job” at times to find just one kindred spirit. I believe if the Father puts that desire in your heart, He has a friend waiting. It only takes just one. I am lifting you up right now that He would put you on the right path. Go BE a friend to someone else and that is often the first step….
        Blessings,
        Bev xx

        • Hi Bev, thank you for the encouragement … I have been rejected, but was totally ok with it. I do have to put myself out there more and stop over thinking so many thoughts that tend to creep in. I know there is someone lurking for me too lol.
          Love and hugs for all you do πŸ™‚ God bless and stay strong in Jesus! xoxo

  2. Even at age 60 I long for friendships, my closest friends are many miles away and they are friends from 20 years ago, I have yet to have good friend relationships in the last 15 years, friends to do things with, etc I see others that go on friend trips and I get jealous of that, I so desire those kinds of friendships

    • Michelle. I am 62 and lately I have been asking God to show me why I can’t maintain or have lasting friendships. I too am having jealous feelings when I see others engaging with others on trips, lunch dates and the likes. Every friendship that I have had ends with me feeling empty. I desire to have lasting friendships and I want to know how to change what I might be doing that keeps me from having them.

      Yvonne

      • Yvonne and Michele, I am right there too. We moved from GA to FL and it just isn’t happening, but I will not give up πŸ™‚
        God Bless,

        Lyn

    • Michele, how I can relate to this so much. I moved from California to NC right after high school in 1990 and since I had no driver’s license, car, job, etc…I had no choice but to follow my family here. For 22 years I prayed asking God to bring a new close friend into my life. Someone to do things with and share a deep relationship with. God finally answered that prayer and the lady I am best friends with now, I just couldn’t have found a better friend. I’m still in awe 4 years later at this special friendship. I thank God for her every day. Don’t give up. Keep praying and asking God for that special someone and He will bring her into your life. I hope you don’t have to wait 22 years and I know that this is really discouraging but I promise you this, when God does bring her into your life it will be the most meaningful relationship you’ve ever had. I will be praying with you.

      God Bless,
      Marcie

  3. The Lisa-Jo and Ann conversation was great, and this video is sure to be a conversation-starter!
    I wish I could say that I don’t feel like a failure. So often the lists don’t get checked off, or the discipline is not there, or the loving response won’t come to my lips. I’m thankful for grace that covers me, but I know I should be doing better in so many areas.

    • Michele,
      How incorrect our “self-eye” can be. I see all that you do and the person that you are and I see Proverbs 31 woman. Between your schooling with your kids, your ministries, your writing, actually making vegetables come from the ground. If I was your child, I’d be rising up to call you blessed this Mothers’ Day. I think you rock!!! Far from failing!!
      Blessings,
      Bev xo

    • Oh my gosh, you said exactly how I feel. I try to be the friend I would like to have and I fall short most of the time; Then, I beat myself up for it.
      Ugh.

      • Eileen, it takes a lot of faith to believe that who I am right now is OK, and that this person who looks back at me from the mirror is friend-material. Let’s trust God together for that kind of faith. So thankful for the upholding grace that atones for all our failures.

  4. I, too, have wonderful lifetime friends who live far away. My best friend of 50 years died very unexpectedly several
    months ago. She lived far away geographically, but as soon as I talked to her on the phone, we always picked
    up where we had left off. I miss her so much. It is more difficult to make new lasting friendship as we get older.
    I have several chronic illnesses which often caused me o have to cancel times with friends. The Lord fills my loneliness
    in precious ways.

  5. I wish I could say I don’t feel this way, but I ache to be involved in my best friend’s wedding. We live 8 hours apart and I’m not able to really do anything. I just have the ache to be part of her and all my other friends’ lives, but we are all separated by distance. Visits and Facebook help, but there is a longing deep inside me for more.
    God is good though, and provides ways to make things easier when they seem most impossible.

  6. I wish I could say I don’t feel this way, but I am afraid my best friend will one day decide not to be my best friend anymore. Several years ago I had some friends just drop out of my life. No explanation no reason just no longer friends anymore. It hurt so much. And after 22 years of praying and asking God for a best friend, He graciously answered that prayer. I can’t imagine what I’d do without her. But sometimes I pull away a bit afraid to stay too close because so many friends have gone away, maybe she will too. Isn’t that horrible? I feel like I’m throwing God’s gift of this friendship back into His face when I think of this. I actually have 3 very close best friends now and I thank God for them every single day. πŸ™‚

  7. I have read the book and found so much of me in it. I do have to say I have not had a close friendship exhibiting some of the qualities talked about in the book since childhood and teen years. I long for those friendships but have had soooo many hurts I am afraid I have erected walls to protect myself. Love the book and the challenge to keep working at it. Thankful for a God who loves us!

  8. I wish I could say I didn’t feel this way but I’m always concerned with what people think about me, and at the same time I’m a people pleaser. I want people to like me, but my fear of “what I think people think about me” messes me up often. This is a fear that with God’s help I am working to overcome.

  9. In Courage,

    I feel just like the woman who says “I hear the voices saying not enough”. No it isn’t weird to talk to yourself. We need to motivate ourselves. Those “lies” are from the devil. He wants us depressed, alone, sad. If we feel like failures then the devil has won. Women need to take the “fine” masks off and just be themselves. You might be surprised to find that others feel the same way. We were made for community and friendships. Go ahead and be yourself. Tell the world how you really feel. We love you and care for you!

    Blessings πŸ™‚

  10. Great confessions, I’m right beside all of this, I have been in this place for too long, Jesus is setting me free, just another part of the lies we live with, but there is freedom, takes time, but the baggage we carry gets lighter all the time. He who began a good work, will complete to the very end. I will finish this race, I am determined, God give us strength, love all of this encouragement, much needed.
    With thankfulness and love…..

  11. Oh my sisters! I identify with all that has been said here. Deep and lasting friendships are hard to find! That makes them all the more valuable. What a precious group!

  12. I wish I could say that I don’t feel this way, but I never bothered look deeper and see what God saw. I let cruel words from people I didn’t care about when they said them turn into awful hurt when spouted those you do care for. God looks at the heart. He not only read the words in my head and heart, He put them there. He wrote them there for me to write and share and I will. And those words will reflect His, love, joy and peace, they literally or His Spirit literally consumes us. If you don’t want to be my friend, you probably don’t want Jesus for one, either. We are a pair.

  13. I struggle with wondering if what I think our friendships are, aren’t really what the other person thinks it is. Like I know someone who I consider like a best friend, but I don’t know if she feels that way about me. Also, I care about what people think of me. It’s all so hard. I have a mentor, someone to disciple me, but instead of it helping, I focus too much on her accepting me, and I think too much about what she thinks of me, and how awkward our relationship can be. Any advice?

  14. When it comes to friends, I do not have many. I have moved often and find that at my age a lot of women already have longstanding, deep rooted friendships. My last move has been the most difficult. Sometimes, I actually feel embarrassed when I show up at girl’s events (ladies conferences) alone.

    • Hi Cynthia, i know what you mean. I’ve moved a lot too. And you’re right, most people my age have their friends established as well. It’s difficult making friends as grown ups! It’s almost wierder. You still feel all the same doubts and insecurities, but judge yourself because you think you’re supposed to be past it. I’m learning though. There’s nothing wrong with showing up alone, but as kids someone makes introduction. As adults, we often have to take that responsabilty ourselves. And it just feels wierd. But i think it gets easier with practice. Most times, people will welcome you more warmly than you expected. And it’s a little less scary the next time.

  15. Yes, I totally get it also. I constantly question things i say after an encounter and instinctively hold pieces of myself back. God’s been working on all of this. But it’s an unending struggle. I assume people have heard enough and decide for them that I’ve said too much. I apologize often unnecessarily and prevent myself from believing that maybe people really want to hear all I have to say. Maybe my friends and loved ones would love to know the unedited me. They may even prefer it. Why can’t I shake the compulsion to filter myself? Who convinced me that my unaltered self wasn’t enough? My scary confession is I think it was me. I’m the one that persuades me to fill in the blanks of things never said by others. It’s often me thats’s hurt me most. Now I’m just conused. And I’m too tired to make sense of the mystery of friendship. I want to because I know God’s leading me through this next phase of trust. He’s had me in this phase of inviting people in. But now I think He’s drawing me to invite them in deeper. Into the mundane. Into my every day. In the midst of the busy. I think the busy could be a defense technique that guards me from connecting vulnerably. There’s always a worthy distraction that prevents me from peeling back the scary layers on the way to my unfiltered truth. Like I said, God’s been working on that. That’s why I’ve been purposefully reaching out and connecting. Key word. On purpose. That’s why I’m here. And I’m VERY excited about it! I joined the book club πŸ™‚

  16. Hi, me again. I don’t know if I watered down my response, and that’s part of what I was talking about. What I wish wasn’t so is this question of saying too much. Potentially “over-sharing” is the plague that haunts me. I wish I could instinctively trust that it ALL has value, and just let it fly when I land in the awkward of a moment untrusted… I know this one of those moments, and God led me purposefully to it. But even now, I question. And that’s the truth you don’t get to if you fear the “over-share.”