About the Author

Monica Bard lives in small-town Texas nurturing perseverant faith, resilient love, and Jesus-filled hope. Struggling in a hopeless marriage, Monica discovered answers and hope in God’s word and healing touch. Monica and her husband gratefully embrace their restored marriage, enjoying the outdoors and occasional adventures with their adult daughter.

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Comments

  1. Monica,
    Thank you for taking me on this journey with you. Sometimes we are like Moses – left gazing at the Promised Land, yet not being able to actually cross over into it. I don’t think Moses felt denied. He walked with God and had the close companionship of the Lord along the way and, like you, he got to cheer others on to reach the pinnacle. No matter what our vantage point – down below, halfway up, or on the mountain top, there is always the splendor of the Lord to be seen and be in awe. Thanks for sharing this beautiful story!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Bev, I love your perspective on Moses! Sometimes we have a tendency to think we’re missing out, but the truth is God is ever present in our lives and surrounding us with His beautiful creation. His majesty and blessings abound! It’s all a matter of adjusting our mindset to experience His splendor and glory, no matter the vantage point. Thank you for your sweet words, Bev, and may God bless you!

  2. Monica, thank you for sharing the view from your unique vantage point today. When we look along the heavens and see the glory of God, it’s an invitation to look along our life circumstances as well and to appreciate the front row seat He gives us to His might acts on our behalf.

    • Hi Michele! So very true. There have been some challenging times in my life, but as I look at my life I see all that God done has done on my behalf, and on behalf of my family! Our God is indeed a good, good Father:) Thank you for your encouraging words. May God bless you, Michele!

  3. So enjoyed your words – Santa Elena is a favorite trail! However, your understanding of going where God leads was delightful. Thanks!

    • Hi Sue!

      Big Bend is a beautiful place and Santa Elena is gorgeous–even from my vantage point! A beautiful reminder of God’s majesty & glory. One day, with God’s help, I will complete the entire trail:)

      Thank you for your sweet comment, Sue:) God’s blessings!

    • Hi Betsy! I’m so glad these words encouraged you today. It’s amazing how God sends the right words at just the right time:) Friends and community are so valuable to our relationship with Christ–it’s there He often places the right person and needed encouragement in our paths! It’s heartwarming to be a part of this precious (in)courage community. I’m so glad to meet you here–thank you for encouraging me with your sweet comment!

      May God blessings abound to you & yours, Betsy!

  4. Monica,
    This was such a joy to read, thank-you for sharing how your journey began, and although it was halted it was a beautiful pause. Sometimes we do need to just sit, and take all of God’s wonder in…….
    Have a blessed day all,
    Penny

    • Hi Penny!

      Indeed it was a beautiful pause:) I love how God used this beautiful pause to redirect my thoughts and turn my focus on His glory and His masterpiece! Isn’t it wonderful how He does that?!

      It’s a blessing to meet you here in this heartwarming space. Thank you for your kind comments and may God bless you!

    • Hi Carolyn!

      Limitations can be so frustrating. I’ve dealt with chronic back issues for years and additional issues this year, BUT as I searched God’s word for answers I finally understand that God loves me, just as I am. He values me, just as I am. He doesn’t see our limitations, Carolyn; He sees our strengths:) And whatever our vantage point may be, He surrounds us with reminders of His grace, His mercy, and His glory! Today I pray you feel God’s love and know how worthy you are in His eyes. As we gather in this community and encourage one another in God’s word, I trust and believe He conquers some of our challenges, too:)

      I’m cheering you on today because I know God loves you and sees your strengths, Carolyn! Thank you for your words of kindness.

  5. Bestie your words bring comfort to me that I too need to sit back and take in God’s blessings….awesome read!!! love ya!!!

    • Oh Bestie, I love you dearly! We go back a long way and you’ve always been one of my encouragers, believing in me when I doubted myself. Thanks for cheering me on!

      Love & hugs to you, treasured friend:)

  6. Monica,
    This is an absolutely beautiful reminder of God’s truth of how he created us all uniquely and how we each experience him uniquely as well.

    Thank you so much

    • Hi Sarah!

      I love your choice of the word, unique! He knit us together in our mother’s womb. He knows every hair on our hand. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. Yes, we are unique and I love that! Each His beloved child, each experiencing His love and majesty from a different vantage point.

      I pray that we can embrace our uniqueness and love one another, all while encouraging each other to treasure the beautiful reminders found in His masterpiece!

      God’s blessings, Sarah! Thank you for your encouraging words:)

    • Hi Lisa!

      To this day I chuckle with delight when I remember that fateful canoe trip:) You, precious friend, hugely impacted my life that weekend! Thanks for your sweet comments–I’m sending love & hugs across the miles to you and your sweet family!

  7. Monica, you are an amazing woman, with the faith of a true disciple! I am proud of you and all that you manage to do to share God’s love! I fondly remember our Emmaus time together and I feel that experience helped you get where you are today, among other experiences. Where will you go from here? Your opportunities are endless! How far you have come! God is so good all the time and you are truly blessed. Remember I love you and God loves you! Peace be with you as you continue your journey!

    • Precious Joan,

      Your kind words bring tears to my eyes as you, my friend, have a gift of insight and empathy, compassion, and devotion to Christ and His people. My Walk to Emmaus was a major turning point in my life. God truly met me there in those seventy-two hours washing me in His love and grace. You and so many others poured out your love and prayers for me. Your message spoke deeply to me and resides in my heart to this day. The trajectory of my life changed in that weekend, my personal relationship with Christ blossomed, and as I sat in God’s word each day, I slowly found Hope again. Jesus-filled Hope! Then, amazingly, the invisible work that God was doing in my marriage became visibly evident when Gary attended his walk two years ago. We have a ways to go and we still fall short, but oh how far we’ve come with God at the center of our marriage!

      And yes, Joan, your insight is spot on! I would not be here today without you and the Emmaus community that loves us well! Together, we serve an amazing, persistent, loving God. As I heed His call to write, I pray my words take flight for His will, not mine.

      Grace and peace to you, Joan! I love you, and I’ll always be grateful for you.

  8. Monica,

    Loved going on this journey with you. We all haves something to give no matter the circumstances or limitations. Ruth was a simple Moabite woman. She started out helping her mother in law get food for the family. Before long she was able to give her mother in law another grandchild. We never know where God will take us on our journey. Along the way we can use our skills & talents to further His kingdom. We might be prayer warriors, leaders, musical or a helper. What ever we do we need to do it to the glory of God. We can cheer lead & root/pray, cook meals what ever. We are never missing out. From any vantage point we are seeing Almighty God’s handiwork. We just need to keep our eyes open & hearts receptive to His calling. Hear & see Him we shall!!

    Blessings 🙂

    • Hi Beth!

      Thanks for joining me on this journey today! Isn’t it amazing how God uses each of us–abilities, limitations, and all–for His purposes?! When we feel weak, He makes us strong. When we think it’s not enough, He multiplies. What an awesome God we serve! I love community because we wrap our arms together and help each other keep our eyes open and hearts receptive to His calling!

      Thank you for your encouragement. May God bless you, Beth, as you serve others and walk in close relationship with our loving God!

  9. As this day closes, I offer a prayer for this community.

    We praise you God for your glorious Creation. The heavens declare Your glory and the skies proclaim the work of Your hands. Your Masterpiece surrounds us, no matter our vantage point, and reminds us of your goodness, your grace, and your love. With you, Lord, we never miss out! Help us confidently live in a way that reflects that we all have something to give, regardless of our abilities and limitations. Open our eyes to those opportunities, Lord!

    Lord, thank you for this community and those that lead, guide, mentor, and write at (in)courage. I pray this heartwarming table of friends grows larger and bolder as more women find a place at the table experiencing the joy and peace that can only be found in You. Heavenly Father, my heart is overwhelmed with the blessings of this day. You are indeed a good, good Father. Thank you! We love you, Lord, and give all glory to You. Amen

  10. You need to check out Canyonministries.com. This is a ministry that offers river rafting trips down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon and offers rim tours all with a biblical view.

    • Hi Kat! Thanks for sharing this ministry recommendation. I’ll definitely keep it in mind, and share it with my adventurous daughter, as we seek and explore adventures and opportunities to experience God’s glory in His Masterpiece. I truly do believe we’re all given prime vantage points to witness God’s love for us in His creation:) Thank you for reading and sharing this ministry–may God bless!

  11. Oh Monica! Just beautiful!! I loved your words and your perspective but most of all I love that fact that I know the woman behind those beautiful words and fresh insight! Keep writing my friend!

    • Hi Cindy!

      Thanks for stopping by with your sweet words of encouragement:) You ALWAYS make me smile–that’s a special God-given gift of yours and I just love that about you! I’m so thankful God crossed our paths in spite of all the miles between us. We serve a good, good Father!

  12. Hi Monica! I didn’t know you were an (in)courage writer! I saw this post, and thought, is this my Monica Bard? Yep! Sure is my Monica Bard. I love this beautiful story about the beautiful balance between the stop and go, the work and rest, the yes and no. Thanks for blessing my heart today!

    • Hi Laurie!

      I grinned from ear to ear as I read “my Monica Bard.” We all long to belong and that two letter word “my” confirmed my sense of belonging and warmed my heart! Reminded me of a precious weekend getting to know you and reminds me of this sweet truth: God calls us His beloved children! I’m so grateful that God connected us:)

      Laurie, thanks for reading my post and leaving such thoughtful words of encouragement. That weekend spent at Suzie’s retreat compelled and confirmed my call to write words that point to Jesus. I’m not on staff with (in)courage, but was blessed to be chosen to share this article as a guest post on their blog. I’m deeply grateful for the doors that God continues to open as I discern His call and purpose for the words He places on my heart. Hugs & God’s blessings!