Two weeks ago I was asked to teach bible study for some of my favorite women in the world. And we should just get one thing straight right away: I used to hate speaking {with every ounce of my being} but now I kinda love it.

Basically I’m a complete mess with it but God always shows up and so it’s kinda really fun.

Never place a period where God has placed a comma. - Gracie Allen

This past spring and summer, several women from our church gathered together and wrote an eight-week study on Matthew 7:7-11. This past Monday was the first night and I unexpectedly was given the opportunity to kick it all off.

We’re looking at asking — how God invites us to come to Him with the big and the small and the crazy and the ordinary.

And since we’re talking about the relationship between asking and receiving, we’re also talking about how sometimes we ask and ask and ask and yeah, ask some more… but nothing seems to happen.

And yet. God is at work. In us, around us, through us.

Never place a period where God has placed a comma. – Gracie Allen

From the get-go I didn’t feel equipped to teach {honestly I never really do} but He continues to provide these opportunities, saying “Just share the story I’ve given you and let Me do the talking.”

And so last week dozens of women opened Week One, Day One of the devotional we wrote. They read a piece of my story, a small excerpt of chapter 3 {broken & mended} from my book Even If Not. And then this past Monday, October 10th, we talked about Ezekiel 37 and how even the most desolate, dry, desperate places can come back to life, can be filled with beauty and hope and joy again.

Because nothing is too broken for God.

We talked about being rooted in Him through every valley. We talked about asking but not receiving what we wanted — yet always receiving more of Him. And always finding that He is more than enough.

When we let God do the mending, broken things become blessed things. (free printable)

Several months ago Tori made this print for my book, one of the nine prints that email subscribers receive. On Monday I sat in my car, said “Your words tonight God, not mine,” and then took the print with me inside as a reminder.

The story isn’t over yet.

Your story isn’t over.

He welcomed the asking, never failing to pour out more of Himself. He blessed what was broken and mended what was messier than I’d ever want to for real admit. It was never a period. It was a comma all along.

Within one minute of posting all of this on Instagram late Monday evening, I received a text message from a friend.

If you’ve been around this little corner of the Internet for a while, you may remember that this time last year we walked together through 31 days of why every story matters. Just over a year ago I asked my friend if she would consider writing one of the blog posts. I didn’t know until Monday, October 10th, that she had in fact drafted something to go up on the blog. As I sat in bible study, she was scrolling through old notes on her phone and came across the words that we both intended to share last October… but I’m pretty sure God meant them for 2016.

With her permission, I’d love to share her encouraging words about why your story truly does matter. She stepped into my shoes and wrote it from my perspective, and I think you’ll see that she knows me and this message pretty well.

When we let God do the mending, broken things become blessed things. (free printable)

“It’s day ten of this journey of discovering why every story matters. Right about now you might be starting to ask yourself, Kaitlyn why do you even care this much? Why are you so concerned with convincing us that every story actually does matter?

The answer is simple. I care because He does. The Maker of the sun and the moon cares so much that He chooses to daily step into your story to make it into something beautiful, in a way that only He can. He doesn’t leaves us to write the chapters on our own. Instead He comes alongside us, grabs our hand, and teaches us which stroke of the pen will come next.

He didn’t leave us to write our stories alone, and I don’t think we are meant to walk through them alone either.

And the beautiful thing about stories is that we all have one, no one is exempt. Sure most of my chapters are different than yours, but they are all bound together through the same grace. Some chapters we willingly flash to the public and others we keep tightly sealed, saving the knowledge of their existence for ourselves, stealing a peek at their hidden pages only every now and then. But the truth is that all of them matter, all of them have a purpose, and all of them come together to write a part of an even bigger story {the ultimate story of redemption}.

Exposing our real story, from cover to cover, is the most terrifying yet liberating thing we could ever do. True freedom is gained when we are truly ourselves, accepting our story for what it is, and sharing it with others.”


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