Living in the Light

Fearful. Betrayed. Abandoned. Unloved. Unworthy. Unwanted.

These are a few words that defined Donna and cast shadows over her. Here’s Donna’s story…

***

Fearful. Betrayed. Abandoned. Unloved. Unworthy. Unwanted.

These were shadows from a past that would haunt me for years. A past that would hold me hostage and keep me from fully living in the light of God’s love. 

Fearful as I watched a hot plate of spaghetti thrown across the kitchen.  Fearful as I watched furniture crash against  walls. Fearful as my dad fell to the ground a few feet from my mom after he’d swung at her and lost his balance.

Betrayed after my intoxicated father sat me on the back of a horse without a saddle or reins to hold, and then swiped the horse’s rear end. Betrayed as he laughed with his friends while I went sailing through the air and landed on a barb wired fence.

Abandoned and unwanted when my dad filed divorce papers and when I discovered he failed to even get my name and birthday correct on them.  Abandoned each time my dad refused to pay child support. Unwanted as years went by without visits, phone calls, hugs, birthday gifts.

Unloved and unworthy when my dad broke promise after promise… to visit, to call, to show up for my high school graduation, to pay for college.

Fearful, betrayed, abandoned, unloved, unworthy, and unwanted. Words and emotions that I let define me and cast shadows over me … until July 2011.

Through several of my Pastor’s sermons and through a friend’s father passing away, I sensed God asking: “How would you feel and what would you do if your Dad were to die this very day?”

I had no answer.  I didn’t even know or really even think I liked my dad, much less loved him.  Fifteen years had gone by since I’d seen him.

Around that same time, God challenged me with two words: ACCEPT and CHOICE

I had a choice and I made it. Following God’s nudging, on July 1, 2011 I went to see my father and accepted him for who he is.

In doing so, for the first time ever, I was able to ACCEPT my past. God made it perfectly clear to me that I could not change my dad nor my past. My only job was to pray for my Dad. I cannot tell you the burden that lifted from my entire being on July 1st.

God took my acceptance one step further. He told me I had a CHOICE!

A choice to believe that He is who He says He is.  A choice to believe His promises; a choice to believe I was worth dying for; a choice to be filled with His joy; a choice to let Him be my Father, my Abba Daddy; a choice to live with a confident heart.

And it’s up to me to make those choices 24/7. Not just on Sunday. Not just at 9am when my day starts – but constantly make those choices.  So I get up every morning and choose to believe that God is a Promise Keeper. I make the choice – to believe He loves me like no other can nor will,  to pray for my Dad, to let go of the anger. I choose to live in the Light of Jesus so I can have a the freedom and security of a confident heart.

There are days, even minutes, that I don’t make the right choices. But the good thing is as I get better and better at making those choices my rebound time gets shorter and shorter. I get quicker at turning back to the Light.

I’m praying for you today – that together we can turn towards and live in the Light of God’s love. That He’ll give us courage to make the choices He’s asking us to make and accept what He’s calling us to accept so that we can keep turning and growing.

Lord, thank You for Your promises. I thank You that You have called me out of the darkness and into Your light. Thank You for transforming my heart into a heart like Yours. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Donna, sweet friend, thank you for boldly believing Jesus and walking in obedient trust of His calling on your life. Your story and  your faith challenge and encourage me to listen for His voice and do the hard thing of believing Him when my feelings are demanding their way. I”m so grateful for the Light and the way you walk in Him!

***
Connecting in Community & A Giveaway:
What is God speaking to your heart as you read Donna’s story o? Or is there something in chapter 5 that resonated with a change, a choice or a place of acceptance God’s inviting you to? Let’s share here and/or some of the answers to our end of chapter questions this week. Whatever is on your heart. 

Donna has generously donated 4 copies of my book {for you or a friend?} Winners will be prayerfully and randomly drawn on Monday from comments left below today’s post. Just click “share your thoughts” and do just that. {If you’re reading this via email click here to share, enter and connect.}

 

PS. Here’s a music video that Donna shared with me – it reminds us of Chapter 5. After you leave a comment, be sure to watch/listen and let it speak to your heart today or when you have a chance later to come back and stay a little longer.

 

About Renee

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, story-teller, heart-encourager and grace-needer. She's also a wife, mom, friend, daughter and author of A Confident Heart, a Retailers Choice Award winning book that became a best-seller and has been published in six languages, with over 150,000 copies sold. Renee is speaks around the country at women's events and and serves on the writing team for DaySpring’s inCourage blog. For twenty years, Renee served in leadership at Proverbs 31 Ministries and as former co-host of the ministry's radio program, “Everyday Life with Lysa & Renee.

Comments

  1. “The Lord is with you mighty warrior” Judges 6:12
    I heard the Lord tell me this as I read this chapter. I love the story of Gideon.
    I need the challenge from Renee to not silence the story God has given for me to share His light.
    Thank you

    • amy martin says:

      Donna, thank you for sharing your story, what a powerful testimony to our wonderful Father! Renee shared “Your story and your faith challenge and encourage me to listen for His voice and do the hard thing of believing Him when my feelings are demanding their way.” Having an adult daughter with autism has been wonderful & taught me so much. But when she is going through a rough patch (as she is right now) your encouragement and Renee’s prayer this morning, bring the joy of knowing my Father into focus!
      Lord Bless you sister as I know He will!

      • Donna B says:

        Amy, Thank you so much for sharing your heart this morning and for your encouragement. Praying for you and your daughter this morning. I so love how you shared that God is using your daughter to teach you much about HIM. I so love HIS GRACE!!!

        Praying for you,

        Donna

    • wonderful video! pretty pictures too!

      wonderful video! beautiful pictures!

      • Donna B says:

        Sharon,

        I so love that video and the song too!! So blessed that God used it to bless you!

        Donna b

    • Donna B says:

      Annie,

      Thanks for the verse! Love it and I love how He is also my Defender! And how is the Father to the fatherless! I love the verse in 2 Corinthians 2:14 that Renee shares in Chapter 12 ….” But I thank God, who always leads us in victory because of Christ.”!

      Victory is OURS!!!!

      Thank you God!!

      Donna B

    • margarita says:

      Donna,

      Thank you for sharing your words.
      I do remember I went through some things like that.
      I thank God I was obedient to God and I listen to the spirit.
      My father is with God,

    • Linda Boychuk says:

      Reading Donna’s story brought tears as I thought of people who had harsh, unloving fathers like her’s. But her story has a happy ending because she trusted God and sought Him, accepting her dad and choosing to trust the promises of the Lord. Her story brought to mind my own reconciliation with my father. While he did not phsically harm me, the emotional separation was so painful when I went out looking for the love he did not and could not give me. When I became pregnant at age 16, he blocked me out totally – it was as if I didn’t exist! He did not acknowledge me, address me, look at me or ask about me, Many years later when I married and had two sons, my father never came to visit or showed any interest in any of his grandchildren. When my oldest son had just celebrated his fourth birthday and my youngest ws not yet two, my husband died in an aircraft accident. My dad came to see me once to ask how I was. I was afraid he was coming to ask me if he could live with me, because he was never very responsible in providing for his family, let alone himself. Years later the Lord convicted me to reconcile with my dad, as I had purposely distanced myself from him with my list of justifying excuses (he was drinnking, smoking, living with different women and expressed no desire to know or see his grandsons. When I finally was ready, the Lord had me call me to request a meeting with my dad and the Lord reminded me over and over not to focus on my dad’s shortcomings, but on my sin of rejecting him and confessing my own, apologizing for not being a good daughter, and for becoming pregnant. After my tearful confessions, he also wiped tears from his eyes and said he had not exactly been a good father. So was the beginning of a reconciled relationship with my dad. I have continued to call and visit him, with my sons,until my sons moved out on their own. My youngest son would ask in amazement, “how do you do it? You seem to know what to talk about with your dad.” I said that I simply asked and talked about the things that my dad was interested in. My dad and I still have nothing in common, but I am honoring my father and honoring and obeying the Lord by forgiving my dad for his poor parenting. In my Christian walk, I attended a ladies’ morning meeting for years and the lady teaching from the Bible, said, “Notice that the commandment to honor your father and mother, does not come with conditions on whether they were good parents or not, the commandment is to honor them. Praise the Lord for the work in your heart and life, Donna! Only He could make these changes!
      And Renee, I really appreciated your comment that Donna’s story, “challenge and encourage me to listen for His voice and do the hard thing of believing Him when my feelings are demanding their way.” That is how I need to respond to the Lord when my flesh wants to rule.

      • Thanks so much Donna for the courage to share your story with us. It tells me that there are so many women hurting that you don’t even think and know them. Thank God for his mercy, He is using you and Renee to bring healing to women. May the Lord heals us.

    • Thank you for sharing your story .

    • Just love Chapter 5, especially how “we focus on our insecurities and cast a shadow of doubt in our minds by blocking the light of God’s truth in our hearts”. And I’m totally agreeing with you on asking “God to use our doubts to draw us into a deeper place of dependence on Him”…….this is so true for me and where I am now in my life. Thank you !

  2. Powerful

    • Donna B says:

      thanks Gail! Praying for God to use it for His glory and for His kingdom purposes!

      • I read Donna’s story and as I was not treated like that by a father. I was abused by a husband and I have carried my heart full of anger for years, so by reading your book I hope to find solice

  3. heather says:

    Wow, Donna’s story really hit home. Thanks Renee for sharing that. Also, thanks for following God’s calling and writing A Confident Heart! This is my second time going through the book. There are a number of times have underlined and wrote ‘me too’ next to an area!! God is really using your book to help me break through and see who He wants me to be. The accepting my past and making the choice to be believe God and who He says He is are both areas I struggle with at times. However, with God’s patient guidance, His word, great friends and of course your book : ), I am doing both a lot more often.

    • Donna B says:

      Heather,

      Thanks for sharing! And it is hard and I still struggle, but the great news is that it is in that accepting of our pasts and making the next right choice that will be our break through to be the women that He created us to be. I keep Renee’s book within an arms reach and when I get those doubts or those triggers start going off like crazy, I turn to the promises that Renee shares with us in Chapter 12. Praying for you dear Jesus sister!

  4. So proud of you Donna! And honored to be friends with you.

  5. As I read this, I was thinking of my dear friend, whose mother has been hurting, disappointing, and betraying her for years. I thought of my past hurts and rejections and how this might be shaping my present. I am pondering what God might be doing now to transform me.

    • Donna B says:

      Mandy,

      Praying that God will reveal Himself to you in new and exciting ways as you keep turning the pages of A Confident Heart! God is using Renee’s story to change my heart from the inside out and I am a firm Believer that He is always at work in our hearts. Let Him do the work …. you just do the obeying. Praying you are faster at it than I was ….I’m kinda of a slow learner! Praying that God will aslo change your heart from the inside out.

      Blessings,
      Donna

      • Donna, thank you for your words and for your prayers. You’re so right–let Him do the work. Amen! Praying for you, too.

  6. christine lowe says:

    I am so grateful that God does not give up on His children. Looking at my past there was shame and regret. I’m beginning to see that is satan’s work. To stay stuck in that shame is his doing. The only way out is to see myself as God sees me. I am fearfully and wonderfully made to serve my Savior. I don’t want to block the light of Gods truthin my heart anymore. I am 62 andhappy to say I became Gods daughter in 2003. I can now claim that because I am a follower of Christ and have stepped out of the darkness I will have the light of life. Thank you Renee for The Confident Heart.

    • Donna B says:

      Christine,

      Praising Jesus with you!! My most favorite title of all — Christ Follower!! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I was once challenged to read Psalm 139 and was amazed at how much it truly helped me to see myself as Jesus sees me. So thankful to be on this journey with you through A Confident Heart – for me, it was a LIFE changer! And I thank God for giving Renee her story to share and the boldness and courage to share.

      Keep running to the LIGHT!!

      Donna B

  7. Stephanie J says:

    Wow, that was hard to read. That is a painful childhood. I would love to read A Confident Heart on ways to move through past pain. Steph

    • Donna B says:

      It was hard …. but I’m not too sure I would want it any other way. It was through my childhood that I became a Christ Follower! I know God in ways that others don’t based on the experiences that He afforded me. And a few months ago, I would have not have been able to say that. Renee’s book, “A Confident Heart” was a heart and life changer for me. I believe so much in the message that God gave Renee, I will be more than happy to send you a copy of her book if you will either email me at dfbostick@yahoo.com, facebook me or leave your address here.

      Praying for you as God helps you move past your pain,

      Donna B

  8. Thanks Donna for sharing! What stood out to me in chapter 5 was where you talked about if we find our thoughts focused on ourselves, such as how we’re feeling or our fears, worries, insecurities, etc… We are not following Him! It is too easy for me to give in to being focused on me….. Worried what others are thinking about me, etc…. I have to remember it is all about HIM! I read in Matthew recently, and this reminded me of Matt 22:16, which shows us that Jesus never really cared about what others thought! He wasn’t swayed by man. We are so lucky to have His example and footsteps to follow. I need to remind myself this every time I find my thoughts drifting off to ME!!!!! Also loved the reminder that the “mind set on flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace.”. (Romans 8:6). The story of Gideon is so relatable too…… It also reminds us to focus on God’s power and Promises, and not ourselves.

    Thanks Renee…..praying for your health.

    • Donna B says:

      Loved Chapter 5!! Life changing for me! Love how God speaks to each one of us and meets us each at our own point of need. I love how Renee captured so many of God’s promises in Chapter 12. I keep my copy of A Confident Heart near by just do I can refer back to Chapter 12 when I start “freaking out”, which can be quite often! Love chasing Satan out of my thoughts with God’s promises!

      Keep focusing on HIS promises!!!

      Donna B

  9. Karen in Canada says:

    Donna – thank you so much for sharing your story! God has really blessed me by leading me to this wonderful community and book study! It really encourages me to hear what GOD CAN DO!!!!

    This song is wonderful and powerful, I feet like running into my sunny back yard and raising my hands to the beautiful light this morning while I spin around! I probably will do just that after I bring my lap top outside!!

    The community in which I live here in Eastern Canada is a very spiritually dry town, however it is ripe for havest and I am believing God to start moving many hearts hear soon!!!! Since I moved here 6 years ago after I married my husband I still do not many Christian friends and do not have a spirit filled church to call home either (we from time to time attend the church my husband grew up in, because that is the only one he is willing to attend)

    At one point this spring, I was bouncing around different Christians blogs and someone on one of them highly recommended your Book Renee ” A CONFIDENT HEART” It could not find a copy anywhere. So I finally downloaded it on itunes and have been reading it on my iphone for the past five weeks. Yesterday after looking for your book at all our nearby bookstores (reading on my iphone is neat, but not my prefered way to study a book like this) I still couldn’t find a ‘hard’ copy of your book…I did however order it online and I am so excited to get it in my hands hopefully early next week!!…. Technology is not my strenght LOL
    However – GOD has certainly used technology to help me feel connected to some powerful Christian women:) Thank you so much for being there and sharing you lives with me
    I really enjoy reading the posts when I get a few minutes, for that I am so thankful to have my iphone, I use it for everything but a phone 🙂
    Blessings to all of you from my home here in Canada to yours
    Karen

    • Karen in Canada says:

      OOPS -Sorry about all the spelling errors above, I was so excited after I typed this message I pressed ‘send’ without proofreading ( very unlike the perfectionist I am – hope you still understand my post 🙂

  10. Karen in Canada says:

    Hello again!!!
    I love this song!!
    I just wanted to share that I did bring my laptop outside!!
    I ran right into the light!! (the sun)
    I lifted up my hands and spun around!!
    Then I ran around some more while the light surrounded me and filled me!!
    Praise God for this glorious day
    I pray that we are all blessed by Jesus` wonderful love, peace and joy today!!!
    `Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. PSALM 90:14)

    • Donna B says:

      Karen, praising and raising my hands with you!! One of my most favorite songs that we sing at church! And after Chapter 4 and 5, I absolutely love it! So glad that you found Renee, this online group and soon her book! A life changer for me!

      Praying for you as you search for a church. Praying for God’s provision of both a church and friends!

      Blessings from the USA!

      Donna B.

  11. Donna — thank you so much for sharing your story, for you openness about your life and how you have been able to overcome with God by listening to Him. I love the song!

    • Donna B says:

      Alice,

      Trust me ,,,, it’s all God! He used Renee and her story so much to change my heart!! Praising Him alongside of you!! And so glad that you loved the song! It’s one of my favs!

  12. Wow, how I can relate. “I cannot change my Dad or my past. My only job is to pray for him.” That is where I have slowly found myself. The more secure I find myself in Christ, the more I can let go and let God. But everyday every hour it is a choice I have to make and I wish I could get it right more hours then I do!

    • Donna B says:

      Dara,

      You and me both on the getting it right part!! I still have my struggles, but I know that it’s God’s journey for me … one step at a time … one choice at a time! So thankful for His grace in our lifes.

      Praying for you and you choice to let go and let God have His way with you!!

      Donna B

  13. Thanks for sharing, Donna! What really stuck with me this week is Renee’s discovery that self-doubt often stems from self-focus…God illustrated this to me yesterday in the midst of a pity party I was having for myself! I was doubting myself because the house didn’t look the way I wanted–and it hit me I was letting the state of the kitchen dictate how I viewed myself! God used the study to convict me that I need to focus on him–not my performance. I went to his promise in 2 Corinthians 12:9…”My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Thanks for the great study Renee!
    Blessings,
    Jennifer

    • Donna B says:

      Jennifer,

      I know … isn’t this the best study ever! Love how Renee makes it so personal and so real! I visit Chapter 12 of Renee’s book just about every day … sometimes two and three times a day if not more! I call it Renee’s Cliff Notes for achieving A Confident Heart!

      Thanks for joining us for the journey!! Keep turning those pages. You are going to love Chapter 11…but no skipping the other chapters to get there!!!

      Donna

  14. This is all so helpful to me — allows me to see the release and acceptance and how great it can be in our growth process! Thank you! I always pass this book title on to others as must read as we can all so relate!!

    • First Renee, I’m so glad you are feeling better!
      Donna,
      My heart ached for you as I read your story. Most of us never realize the pain other people are going through. And yes we all have a choice, God gives us the choice to choose our way, where the pain never goes away, or his way where we cast our burden upon him, forgive others and ourselves and let go of the pain so we can clearly see the future God has waiting for us! Choosing God’s way makes all the difference!
      I love the video with the song, I was singing along!

      • Donna B says:

        Love that you love the song!!! It gets my toes a tapping and my thoughts turned upwards towards Him and not on myself! So blessed by your comments! thanks for sharing,

        Donna B.

    • Donna B says:

      Angela,

      So thankful that God uses our messed up lifes for His purposes and His glory! So blessed to be on this journey with an amazing group of women!

      Blessings,

      Donna

  15. Thank you for the wonderful post. It has given me lots to think about.

    • Donna B says:

      You are so welcome. So blessed by Renee’s book! And as I proccessed Chapter 4 and 5 about 10 or 11 months ago, I had lots to process as well! Praising Him that He was processing right there alongside of me and thankful for Renee and her “counseling” through her book. Praying for you as you process too!

      Blessings,

      Donna

  16. this was a great testimony. I’ve had my share of pity parties and it’s easy to wallow in such circumstances. it’s these difficult times that we have to release our guilt to God. only he can take away the Hurt. when he heals that we can move on. thanks for post

    • Donna B says:

      I love how God is not only the healer of my diseases, sickness and also the healer of my heart!! He loves for us to live in victory and in wholeness that can only come from Him!

      Blessings and hugs,

      Donna B

  17. Thank you Donna for so eloquently and rawly expressing your experiences and feelings. I am working through “issues” with my father as well and have found comfort and confidence in God’s word as I work to move on from my own troubled youth. Recently, I have felt a calling to help and guide other women who have been beaten down by life… A Confident Heart is a tool that I have referred several friends and clients too and I would love to be able to give a copy to someone who really needs it.

    • Donna B says:

      Carol,

      I love that you are using A Confident Heart to minister to others. I so love the message Renee shares with each of us. Praying for God to heal your heart and give you victory over your past. Praying for Him to fill you with his wisdom and grace as you minister to other women.

      Blessings,

      Donna

  18. Kj Chase says:

    Thank you for your transparency. those words would describe me, too. Not the exact circumstances, but similar. We need to be bold to share our stories, because they bring glory to God. The only light I contain is the light God has given me. i need to “let my light so shine before men, that they may see my good words (the outworking of God’s healing and power within me) and glorify my Father in heaven.”

    • Donna B says:

      Kj,

      You are so right on all of us being bold to share our stories. Not only do they bring glory to God, but they bring His healing to each of us. I was amazed this morning as I opened Renee’s blog and saw my story there and how He used that exact moment to heal my heart even more! God does have a purpose for all of our pain and that purpose is to glorify Himself. I once heard a pastor say that the one thing that God cannot do is praise Himself, it’s our job to praise Him!! And so that’s what I want to do with my life and with the story that He has given me!

      Giving Him all the glory!!!

      Donna B

  19. Rebecca Rodriguez says:

    Donna- Thank you for sharing your story it hurt reading it but i am glad you could share to help others that can learn from you . Thank you Renee – For writing your book. I am learning from God and your book. I have struggled my whole life with very very low self esteem. cause i struggled in learning and i has hindered alot in my confidence . I am now trying to conquer this and Help my son with his confidence because he has a bad speech delay. I dont want him growing up thinking he doesnt have confidence. Reading these stories and book really is speaking to my hear. Thank you Lord for what you have done for me already. Thank you Ladies i know there are alot but if you think of me. Please pray for me

    • Donna B says:

      Rebecca,

      Thanks for sharing your story and being so truthful with all of the ladies within this amazing group. I love watching God direct everyone here for His purposes.

      Lord, I praise you and I thank you for Rebecca and for how you are using Renee and her story to teach Rebecca about your great love. I would ask that you would replace Rebecca’s low self esteem with your promise that she is fearfully and wonderfully made. Fill Rebecca with your confidence and your wisdom as she helps her son with his speech delay. Fill her son as well with your confidence, your wisdom and your calmness. Cause them both to lean into you for encouragement. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  20. D'ana Heinlein says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your story Donna! I am from a broken home and my dad let me down many, many times in my lifetime – I made some pretty dumb choices when I was in the “midst of the storm”! I am so thankful that the Lord’s plans are perfect for my life and that HE never lets me down, forgets my birthday…… He knows the number of hairs on my head!! Thank you ABBA Daddy!!! Praying for you Donna and for your earthly father! God bless!

    • Donna B says:

      D’ana, I went there too with some of my choices! I was trying to find love and acceptance in all the wrong places for all the wrong reasons. Sometimes with guys, sometimes with drugs and sometimes with alcohol … not some of my proudest moments. But the great thing to remember is that God is a GOD of forgiveness and a God of second chances. I love how he looks beyond the sin and to our hearts! Thanks for the prayers …. especially for my Dad. I don’t believe he is a Christ Follower. He is about 77 years old and is in a nursing home because he has no other options. Material for another post at another time. But He definitely needs Jesus in his life!

      Thanks much and so thankful that we are doing this journey together through Renee’s book and her blog.

      Donna B

  21. Brenda G. Benoit-Adkins says:

    i am very grateful for all the inspiring words during this time of dealing with my son being alienated from me! I have learned to let go and let God! Please keep me in your prayers and hope to hear from you soon!

    • Donna B says:

      Lord, I pray for restoration between Brenda and her son. I don’t have all the words or the reasons as to the why for alienation, but I know that you do and that’s all that matters. I pray for repaired hearts and repaired relationships. But most of all, I pray that you will be the centerpiece of Brenda and her son’s relationship. Asking for you to do what you do best, draw both of them closer to you and as they draw closer to you, that they would draw closer to each other. Cause them both to release their agendas and replace it with your agenda. Focus their thoughts on you and only you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  22. This very much what I needed to hear today. Thank you. Love the song.

  23. Your stroy touch my heart, I have been feeling alone too,but today I realize that I needed to change my thinking and believe that I am worhty and good. That I can be all that God wants, if I stop the negative thoughts. I will not become my negative thoughts.

    Thank you for sharing your touching story. God is Good

    • Donna B says:

      Vicki, much thanks for your kind words. And yes, you are worthy, you are loved, you are fearfully and wonderfully made, you are a daughter of the King of Kings, a member of THE Royal family of all royal families! You are HIS royalty!!

      Donna B.

  24. Thanks for sharing your story, this should help alot of people to move beyond hurts from their past. You are truly a blessing.

    • Donna B says:

      Nita,

      you are so welcome and that is the prayer of my heart that God would use the story that He has given me for His glory and honor – to help others not only move past their pain, but to move closer to His heart!

      Thanks again for blessing me,

      Donna B

  25. What a profound lesson……..we all have skeletons in our closets, thank you for showing us that we choose to let them continue to hang around or we can opt to throw them out! Forgiveness and accepting those we love the most, for who they are, is one of my biggest struggles, but your willingness to do so with everything you’ve been through, makes it seem so much easier. Thank you for sharing your hardships and insight!

    • Donna B says:

      Lisa,

      So thankful that God has chosen you to be a part of this amazing study! I love how God has used Renee’s book and her story to bring us all together for His wonderful teaching of us all!

      Praying for you as you continue to turn those pages of Renee’s book.

      Donna B

  26. brittany jacobson says:

    wow that those words bascilly are the words that over shadow me
    one word that i used to own was worthless
    i would say i was worthless and feel worthless
    all the time . i struggle with the shadow of unlovable on me
    i hear that being played everytime in my ear because that was told to
    me by someone from my small group
    some times i belive that lie that im unlovable and its hard to have relationships or connect with anyone cause i keep hearing that word

    • I can relate to being overshadowed by a word or description that sticks in your head from the past….it takes ten positive thoughts to overcome just one bad thought. I too feel unloved, unworthy, etc. This chapter helped me to realize that God has loved me and accepted me for who I am all along. I pray that I will truly start to rely fully on God’s love and his light. Thank you for this study. God Bless you all and may we all continue to grow and have confident hearts.

      • Donna B says:

        Brittany and Paula,

        Thanks so much for opening up and being so real with your thoughts and your feelings. Praying for you both and asking God to show you how to replace those lies that you have heard with His promises. Anytime I get those thoughts, I grab Renee’s book and read through all of the promises that she has listed in Chapter 12. I also will read Psalm 139 over and over until it saturates my thoughts.

        Love seeing God working your hearts. Keep running and turning to the Light.

        Donna B

  27. This probably is the closest I’ve ever read to my own story. I looked my father up last summer to put an end to my constant curiosity of who he really was and also to fulfill the need to forgive him and get a lot of unending questions answered. The timing was impeccable because I learned a lot about myself through 3 months of visting him in hospice. See I found him as he was dying. He was terminal and discovering this was really my last chance, I took that whole time to learn about him. I had a lot of ground to cover after 30 years of no connection. I will never regret the opportunity, and I came away from that a much better person. I went with an open heart despite the abuse I saw in my childhood, and this time with an adult attitude, I was able to see what he truly lacked in his heart. My faith took me through it all last summer. Thank you for such a wonderful, very similar story. It did my heart wonders. I sometimes have regrets about the fact I wish I’d asked more questions, but really it just was good to close a door on my past. I feel I can go forward with a much more appreciative open heart.
    Thank you!

    • Donna B says:

      Pamela,

      Blessed by your story as well! Praising God and thanking Him for how He allowed you to meet with, forgive and extend grace to your Dad! What an amazing sotry of healing! LOVE IT!! And love seeing how God has worked and is working in your life. Praising Him for your trusting, faithful and healed heart.

      May God continue to bless you and use you in the lives of others.

      Donna B

  28. This week’s lesson has really spoken to me in who I should look to for acceptance. Struggling with my daughter’s rejection has caused me to reexamine why I cannot deal with rejection. It all goes back to my childhood when my father too rejected me. I haven’t seen my real father since I was three. My stepfather was much like Donna’s father in his abuse and alcoholism. The bottom line is we live in a fallen world and we have to deal with the results of what sin has done to each one of us. To know that our Abba Father loves us in the way that we (as women) long to be loved is something we should never forget or take for granted. This study has truly spoken to my heart and is such a blessing. I’m already a different person than what I was when I started this study. Thank you Renee!

    • Donna B says:

      Praising God with you Chris!! I love how God has prompted and is prompting so many to share their hearts here with Renee and I. I love watching Him change hearts! Praying for you as you process your past hurts.

      Loving how God is using Renee and her book to change so many hearts for his kingdom purposes! Can’t wait to hear how God will keep drawing you closer and closer to His heart! You are going to love the rest of the book and Renee’s how to’s for letting go and letting God rule our hearts!

      Many blessings,

      Donna B

  29. Peggy Kennedy says:

    Thank you Donna,
    These were words I needed to hear today, I have been in another dark mood. I have still been thinking if I cannot trust my parents who can I trust and remembering all my past sins so I cannot trust even myself. A bunch of baggage is also surfacing but you have reminded me it is my choice to let God’s o[onion shape my view of myself and He is the perfect parent.
    Thank you Renee,
    Your book is reinforcing me to focus on our loving Father instead of myself and to pray and read His Word more.

    • Donna B says:

      YAY God!! And as that baggage resurfaces, please visit Chapter 12 of Renee’s book and allow His promises to fill you up!!

      Praying for you!

      Donna B

  30. Connie J. says:

    Walking in the light for me right now means knowing that God is there and that He sees what I and my family are going through even when we don’t feel Him. Last night was one of those times. We had to have my daughter taken to the hospital by ambulance because she was having seizures. The whole time we were there, I could hear the words “I am here. I see your fear.” I made the choice to believe in those words and could feel the difference as I made that choice. My heart and soul became calmer and I experienced peace in the midst of the storm. She is better this morning. Praise God!

    • Donna B says:

      Praising God with you not only for His peace but also for your daughter doing better! We serve an amazing God who knows everything there is to know about us …. down to each little hair on our heads!! Praying for you and your daughter as you walk in the LIGHT!!

      Blessings,
      Donna B

  31. Thank you for sharing Donna! I too find that most of my struggles with insecurity come out of my relationship (or lack there of) with my father. I have never felt that I was of any real worth to him. But I’m learning to trust God’s words and promises and to believe that they are true. That my value is found in Him, and not anyone else. What I really took away from Chapter 5 was about changing my focus. I need to get my eyes off of myself, get a little less self-aware and become more aware of God. If my eyes are on him, and my ears are listening to his truth, there isn’t room for the lies that Satan would prefer me to listen to. Just this week I have taken the step to become accountable to two of my closest friends. I’ve asked them to check in with me to see if I’m listening to God’s truth. I need that accountability and hope to return the favor. Thank you Renee for writing this book. I’m reading through it for the second time now and taking advantage of the online resources. I’d love to have a hardcopy (I’m reading on Kindle) to share with a friend.

    • Donna B says:

      Kelli,

      Love how God is using the story that He gave Renee to change us and make us into the women that He wants us to be for His purposes. Love how He shows us how to trust to Him day by day, minute by minute!

      Praying for you and your journey to the center of His heart,

      Donna B

  32. Jennifer F. says:

    Thank you for sharing Donna. This truly speaks to my heart as I am still dealing with the hurt, abandonment, rejection, etc., faced from my mother. And am still battling many emotions as my kids & have had to move in with her & watch/hear her turn her back on God & follow very (blatant) pagan teachings. I cannot twll you how much it helps knowing I’m not alone in the emotions or in knowing God’s the one & only parent will ever truly need.

    Thanks again for your open, sharing heart. Prayers for your continued healing & following of His calling.
    Jennifer

    • Donna B says:

      Heather,

      Thanks for the prayers. I can use all of those I can get! Praying for you too. It took me 40 some odd years to finally let go and let God have His way with my heart and my attitude towards my Dad. Praying for God to guide, direct and guard your heart.

      And you are so not alone!!

      Donna B

    • Donna B says:

      Jennifer,

      Thank you so much for sharing your heart about your Mom. Praying for God to work in your Mom’s heart. Praying that she will find her way back to Him. Praying for you as well as you deal with the emotions. Praying for God to put His hedge of protection around you and your kids. Praying for God’s healing for your heart as well.

      Keep moving towards the Light and to your Abba Father!

      Donna B.

    • I too have issues from my childhood and adulthood from my mother. Sometimes I find it difficult to pray for her and to hope that she will ever have a change of heart. But I know that God never gives up….so I will continue to pray that she sees God’s light. It has taken me a very long time to get over the pain and hurt that she has caused and to realize that I cannot fix it. Only God can.

      • Donna B says:

        Gail,

        It is hard to pray for those that have hurt us, but when we are called to, it’s for our own good. Sometimes it is so hard for me that I have a wall hanging that states “Prayer is less about changing the world …. and more about changing ourselves.” Thinking I need to tattoo this one on my forehead! And I too as so thankful that God does not give up on us … cause I know, I have given Him more than enough reasons too.

        Praying for God to continue His healing process in your heart and in your relationship with your Mom,

        Donna B

  33. I desire to chose to live in the light of who I am in Christ. It is His battle…His power through me. Gal 2:20, Isaiah 30:15-21. Like Gideon’s battles- God longs to be gracious to us. We can choose. Thank you for sharing your life and what is true.
    Billie

    • Donna B says:

      Billie,

      YAY God!! He wants us all to choose the light!! Keep living in the light!!!

      thanks for sharing!

      Donna B

  34. Thank you so much! I would love a copy of the book. I have recently started going to church and trying to get closer to God. I relate to Dad betraying you. Despite everything my father has done I am still desperate for a relationship with him. However I am slowly realizing I need to put that passion and energy into seeking a closer relationship with HIM, the REAL Father of everyone. I am a great person and if my dad refuses to get to know me then I guess it’s his loss. Thanks again! 🙂

  35. Also, right before finding this in my email ,I was driving and a song Be The Light was on. Goosebumps!

    • Donna B says:

      Cathy,

      Praying for you, your relationship with God and with your Dad. Praying for God to heal your hurts and that as you seek God, He will reveal Himself to you as your Abba Father.

      Do a youtube search and listen to “Learning to be the Light” by Newworldson! It’s another good one too.

      thanks for sharing,

      Donna

  36. Oh how this story hits home. I have so much fear, hurt, abandonment and feelings of being unloved, I wouldn’t know where to begin. I was not allowed to see my mom as a child but began a relationship with her when I was 18. My sister and I were told she did not want us. From then to now (I’m 49) I tried to establish a relationship with her. I finally gave up last year, but not without years of a roller coaster relationship that involved being treated bad, putdown (in front of others), embarrassments, mistreatment, etc. I finally realized my mom does not have the capability of being a true “mother”. She would go months at a time without even taking my calls; I would feel abandoned all over again. My paternal grandmother raised me and she hated my mother. According to her, I looked and acted like my mother and so she hated me too (at least that is the way she made me feel). I grew up in a home of verbal, mental and physical abuse (although they didn’t consider it child abuse back in those days). I have come a long way with the pain and feeling of being unloved, but I really have a long, long way to go. My fear, pain and the feeling of being unloved by my family is so very real/existent and prevalent! I use to constantly read Psalm 27 especially the verse…when your mother or father forsake you He will take you up! I’m still a work in progress!

    • Gail N. says:

      RT,

      I just wanted you to know that you are not alone in your fear, hurt, and feeling unloved. I have not experienced exactly what you have, but I am 53 and struggle with the same issues. I, too, am a work in progress!

      Take care and remember…we are in this journey together.

      Gail

      • Donna B says:

        RT and Gail,

        Thanks so much for sharing your hearts and your stories here! And you are correct, we are not alone and we are all works in progress. My Mom and Dad separated when I was about 5 or 6. And I just turned 50 so it’s taken awhile … ok, a long while for me to get where I am today – 40 something to be exact. I so love God’s promise found in Deut 31:6, “He will never leave nor forsake us”. He is always there even when we don’t feel him!

        I love reading Psalm 139 and the promises that Renee shares with us in Chapter 12. “Living In His Security” – a security that can never be taken away from us!

        I love how He gives us the ability to make the next right choice …. so keep making those right decisions …. He is there and He loves the both of you like no other can nor will!

        Blessings and praying for you both,

        Donna B

  37. I would love a copy of this book. I have seen it referenced in many blogs.

  38. What a wonderful story of being set free!!!! My dad drank also and Long after he died I realized I missed a gift God was offering me to connect with him in a deeper way. I had helped him and been dutiful, but holding onto unforgiveness caused me to miss a blessing.
    One part of the chapter that really spoke to me was, “when we focus our attention on ourselves, we turn our attention away from God. We leave no room in our thoughts to listen to what He is thinking about us, because we have given that place away to be occupied by other people’s opinions. We become overly concerned about what others think of us instead of what God thinks about us.”
    Learning to depend on God to tell me who I am has been very freeing.
    God bless Renee, saying a prayer for healing from God and wisdom for the doctors.
    And Donna, thank you for sharing.

    • Donna B says:

      Dodi, So blessed that God is using Renee and her story to touch and transform your heart! And I love how you talked about depending on God for Him to tell you who you are. Praying for you and praising Him for you.

      Donna B

      • Thank you Donna. Isn’t it amazing how when we reach out and share with others, God blesses us and even does MORE heart-healing for us?
        My life right now is full of changes. I am in mid 60s, People I have know for years have recently died. Some are moving away to be near kids.
        What I cling to, is God is not surprised. I may feel sad at times, but he embraces and comforts me there. Sharing our stories is one way God embraces us and invites others to enter into His story of healing with us, in us and through us. You are being so faithful to respond to every one who was touched by your story.
        May God bless you and continue to draw you closer, closer and closer still into His healing love.

  39. Healing only God can give. Amazing~!! Thank you for sharing.

  40. Thank you for your message! I love your accept and choice. I grew up with a shell of parents and I can say a lot of my doubts and insecurities comes from that. I’ve been praying for healing and to get past the pain of the past. I can’t change my past/ nor my parents but I can accept them and pray for them. I love how you said about turning back quicker and finding the Light…so agree with this. I know that all my pain is serving a greater purpose for Him and his Kingdom.
    So encouraging the strength and bravery of all the info posted! Thanks so much!
    Julie

    • Donna B says:

      Julie,

      Thanks so much for your encouraging words and for being a part of this study. I love how God has knitted us all together on Renee’s blog for His kingdom purposes. Love how all of you are opening up and sharing your life stories just as Renee has. So thankful that He has given me a front row seat to watch Him work.

      Praying for you,

      Donna B

  41. Michelle Raue says:

    As I read your story Donna, I felt like I was reading my own. My Father was a bi-polar alcoholic and could be the kindest most giving man one week and pure evil the next. Life at my house was hard. I never invited friends over. When I was 10 my Dad left – went on to marry 5 more times. I would visit him when he was “up” and then not hear from him for long periods. He didn’t show for my high school graduation, paid my first semester of college then disappeared, no show at my wedding…anyway you get the point.

    What is really odd is God was using all of this in my life before I even knew God. Whenever I spoke of my Dad I only chose the happy memories. Realizing at a young age It did no good to dwell on the bad. I couldn’t change it. My Dad showed up several years ago right after the birth of my youngest daughter destitute and desperate.. I took him in and found out soon after he had Alzheimer’s. I cared for him alone for six years (my sisters and brother would have nothing to do with him). Anyway, all of that happened BEFORE I found Jesus.

    After I was saved, I looked back over my life. All of the pain, turmoil and choices I made. I knew right then that Jesus had been with me the entire time. He gave the eight year old the strength to clean the puddles of blood off the kitchen floor after one particularly violent night. He brought people into the life of that young college freshman who would help her find ways to pay for the college degree. He was ALWAYS right there. Loving, comforting and protecting me. That realization is what truly opened my heart to His love and leading. It solidified my faith in Him.

    I am not claiming I don’t have baggage from my life of turmoil in those formidable years. I do!! Jesus made Himself known to me at this time in my life so I could deal with those. This book and study is helping tremendously. But I have no doubt that He is leading me, guiding me, holding my hand and will always right there. The lesson learned from Him showing me He was there all along has made me sure He will continue the journey. He truly is the light. I choose to look at my life and my circumstances as a blessing which has brought me closer to God and not a curse I need to escape.

    Thanks for sharing Donna. I’m glad you received your blessing out of your ordeal!!

    • Donna B says:

      Michelle,

      Thanks for sharing your amazing story! It reminds me of the verse in Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’! You were living out this verse in your life with your Dad. I love watching our God work in the lifes of His daughters!!

      Thanks again for sharing. Praying for you as He leads you closer and closer to His heart.

      Donna B

    • “I looked back over my life. All of the pain, turmoil and choices I made. I knew right then that Jesus had been with me the entire time.” That is a powerful statement! Thank you for sharing.

      • Donna B says:

        YAY for God’s revelation!!! Love how He promises that He will never leave nor forsake! It goes against His character and who is to break His promises!! LOVE how is our Promise Keeper!!

        Blessings and blessings from Him!

        Donna B

  42. I am so thankful that God is faithful. We never need to doubt that He loves us and is at work in our lives turning painful experiences into blessings, for our good.

  43. Denise Cope says:

    I have felt this myself with my ex. Who was abusive verbally and physically. It is the verbal that stayed with me. God told me that I was ok and yes that I was doing the right thing by leaving and moving out of state at the time. And praise God he delivered me. I forgave and thought I let go of the hurt but these past few weeks I have found that I havent quite succeeded but you know I am not giving up or giving in. I am letting God take control. I give him praise and glory.

    • Donna B says:

      Denise,

      God I thank you for how you are working in Denise’s life. Go before her, help her forgive in the same manner as you forgave her. Help Denise let go of the hurt and be filled with your love and your peace. In Jesus’ name. Amen

  44. Renee, Donna’s story could be my story. I have always struggled with feelings of rejection since childhood and even through marriage, yet I know God has a better plan for me even when I struggle today with feelings like that still. Today is one of those days.

    • Donna B says:

      Praying for you Angie Webb.

      God, replace Angie’s feelings of rejection with the promise of your love found in John 3:16-17. Help Angie to grasp how wide, how deep, how long and how tall your love for her is. Give Angie an understanding of who she is in and who you are in her! Fill her to the point of overflowing with your love, your grace, your mercy, your compassion, your kindness and most of all, yourself! Guide and direct Angie’s steps toward your heart. Reveal yourself to Angie in ways that she has never experienced. Protect her thoughts and show Angie how to take those thoughts of rejectionthat are not of you and throw them away and replace them with thoughts of you and your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  45. Kaye Cannon says:

    Wow, timing, God’s timing. I was told by my counselor last night, with my husband confirming his words, that I AM worthy, I am NOT stupid and HE LOVES ME! Thanks for additional confirmation.

    • Donna B says:

      Praising God for the additonal confirmation! You are worthy!!! You are loved!!! You are chosen!!! You are redeemed!! And God has an amazing plan for YOU!!!!

  46. Donna,

    Wow, what a powerful testimony! I had know idea that you experienced such a shattered childhood. I’m so that your daddy didn’t love you the way he should have. I glad you said yes to Jesus and chose His unconditional love that never fails or disappears.

    Thank you for being so revealing and honest about your past. I’m sure that sharing your story wasn’t easy but I truly believe it will give others, who have experienced brokenness such as yours, the hope and encouragement they so desperately need.

    You’ve been such a blessing!!
    Love,
    Leah

    • Donna B says:

      Leah,

      Thank you so much for always being such an encourager. I love how God gives me my own little “Barnabus’s to walk this journey with and thankful that you are one of those! Can’t wait to meet you at She Speaks!

      Thanks again,

      Donna B

  47. No matter what I do, God will not let me rant and rage about my father. I have been sitting here wanting to drag him through the mud, but God keeps telling me that I am better than that and to let it go. I have accepted that my father is who he is and nothing will change. I lived 23 years before him and I will continue to be the loving woman that I have become, because of the love and acceptance that I have had all 49 years of my life from a strong mother, a loving family and my savior God!

  48. Thank you for sharing Donna.
    I could have written that title. My father was an alcoholic too. I remember enchiladas all over the kitchen floor in the middle of the night. I remember is girlfriend showing up in the middle of the night, and then the phone calls if he didn’t meet her at the bar. I was the unplanned baby of the family. When I was 14 I told my Mom to divorce him. Well daddy married the girlfriend when I was 15, in April or May. Then my Mom remarried, my step-dad was a drunk too. But my world got rocked hard on Aug 6, 1974. My step Mom murdered my dad. I’m 53 now & still recovering from all of that. I would love to read the book A confident Heart, but I get encouragement just from ya’ll being willing to share your painful past with me. It’s so comforting to know that I’m not alone in the disappointments of my growing up years. I tell myself everyday that God loves me, has a plan for my life, but most importantly God doesn’t make junk. My parents might have made me feel all those things – fearful, afraid, unwanted, unloved, abandoned, BUT GOD makes me feel Loved & Special.
    Our stories might not be exactly the same but we have over come a lot of the same emotional scars. Thank you so much for sharing Renee.

    • Donna B says:

      Patti, thanks so much for sharing your story. And you are so not alone. Praying for healing for you and your heart as well. And you so right!!! God has a HUGE plan for your life! We are both fearfully and wonderfully made for His kingdom purposes!

      Thanks for sharing,

      Donna B

  49. Tiffany Bell says:

    This story sent chills down my spine….at no age is it good to have to experience sadness such as that, but I’m so grateful that you allowed God to use it all to draw you closer to Him. I am using my own personal experiences, as well, to show others around me how faithfulness and complete trust in the Lord is the only way to make through difficult times. Blessings to you, Donna, for sharing your story.

    • Donna B says:

      Thanks so much Tiffany! I am amazed about how much of how we react or what we do in response to what others do to us all goes back to our choices. It was definitely not fun to go through but I have chosen like you to allow God to use it for His glory. All the glory goes to God! What an amazing thing when God uses our pain to draw others closer to Himself and us closer too! What a privilege to be used by our amazing Father in such amazing ways. I so love HIS grace towards me!

      Blessings for you as your journey closer to His heart,

      Donna

  50. I have a similar story of abandonment by an earthly father. God has shown me time and time again that he is my Abba, that I need to accept and forgive. Thank you so much for sharing, I needed this reminder to continually bathe in Christ’s love light so my heart will be ready to love, accept and forgive through his power not mine. God’s great timing at work! Alleluia! Go God!

    • Donna B says:

      Shawna,

      Praising Him with you Sister!! Love how He has so much patience with each of us! And I too need that reminder daily …. no make that hourly! Thank you so much for sharing.

      Donna B

  51. That took so much faith and guts to make those changes. It is so hard to accept some things until we let go and live by faith through God knowing that he will always be there for us. You are so brave.

    • Donna B says:

      Cassie,

      It is all God – His faithfulness, His strength and His grace! I love His promises in 2 Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you, my power is made perfect in weakness.” and in Philippians 4:13 “I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me”. It’s when we rely on Him that He does His best work in and through us.

      Thank you so much for your encouraging words.

      Donna B.

  52. Shannon Steckel says:

    Donna-Thank you for sharing your testimony with us. I admire to be so open about what you are going through. Will be praying for you. Thanks for sharing and God Bless!

    • Donna B says:

      Shannon, thanks for the prayers! Taking them and claiming them.

      And please know that I, along with Renee, will be praying for each of you.

      Keep turning those pages and keep your eyes on the LIGHT,

      Donna B.

  53. Susan Hutch says:

    Wow-just read Donna’s story-made me cry for that little girl.
    I wanted to hug her and love her thru it all. In chapter 5 it says,
    “its important to realize that damaged emotions and insecurities
    from our past have a powerful influence over how we see ourselves
    now.” I am living that statement. Feelings of low self-worth haunt
    me. I was a sensitive child who was told not to feel the way I did.
    I was made to feel shame over how “different” I felt. I wish I could tell
    that little girl that she was special because God made her-even with
    her sensitivity. I felt and still feel “wrong.” I look at others who seem to
    look to God for love and support -how can I get there
    too???????

    • Donna B says:

      Susan,

      I’m feeling the hugs! Thank you so much for your tender heart! God gave you your sensitive heart! Take it and claim it, you will be amazed at how God uses your tender heart to show His love!

      Not only are you SPECIAL, but you are LOVED by the Creator of the universe, ADORED by the King of Kings, CHOSEN by a God who loves you like crazy, and REDEEMED by the love and blood of His amazing son JESUS!

      And it’s in all of these things, that God had given you the CHOICE to BELIEVE Him!! A CHOICE to TRUST Him!!

      Turn to the LIGHT and keep turning to the LIGHT! Turn towards His heart and He will let you find Him, choice by choice, hour by hour , day by day.

      Praying for you and hugging you back!

      Donna B.

  54. Stephanie says:

    I have a ‘choice’. A choise to turn from doubt, anger, depression, fear, worry, self-pity. A choice to belive God’s word. A choice to walk in the light, instead of the shadow of my doubts. (learning, learning, learning…)

    • Susan Hutch says:

      Thank you Stephanie for what I needed to
      hear… I’m reading another book now & it is now talking about “choices.”
      Think that God is talking to me? Thanks again for your comment. I don’t feel
      so alone!

      • Donna B says:

        Susan,

        God loves you and you are so right. You are never alone! He is there and walks every step with you!

        Blessings,

        Donna

    • Donna B says:

      YAY God and YAY Stephanie!!

  55. Christine says:

    Hi, I have just read Donna’s journey of faith and release form the past and how it affected her relationship with her father. That is truly amazing and blessed me so much. While reading her words I thought of a young friend of mine who is held back by her past and in particular by her parents lack of care and support for her as she grew up .I so long to see her released from the unforgiveness and bitterness in her young heart.That day will come. So it was especially encouraging to read the process of how donna arrived at that point , even naming the date specifically. I think my job now is to pray in faith for my young friend that she too will arrive at a point where she too will name the date of her turning point and be able to move forward and have a renewed relationship with her parents, in particular her father. Thanks.

    • Donna B says:

      Christine, praying alongside you! Love you heart towards your friend and her parents. Can’t wait to you get to share that turning point date with Renee and I.

      May God bless and restore that relationship for His glory.

      Donna B.

  56. Reading Donna’s story makes me think about all the children who were abandoned, who have never met their father, or don’t know why he is not in their life, and don’t know our heavenly Father either. If only we could give them all the gift of knowing their Heavenly Father, as each of us do.

    • Donna B says:

      Dawn, I love the reminder and I so agree with you. I volunteer with the Global Orphan Project and have been to Haiti three times after the hurricanes and the earthquake. And the last time I went, we organized and lead approximately 120 orphans with a week of Vacation Bible Church. I also financially support 6 little Haitian girls. Love them and miss them. Haiti unfortunately has deemed and labeled unadoptable. It’s sad …. And not sure if you know Renee’s and Aster’s story. Renee, JJ and their boys adopted Aster from Ethopia. Love Renee’s heart for adoption and Aster! Brings tears to my eyes when I see pictures of her!

  57. You story has been so thought provoking for me. I had always thought that the abuse that I have suffered was because of me. I am going to sit down with pen and paper and list the people in my past and present that have hurt and abused me and write down things about them that make them who they are and look ad see why they are like they are and this is myself included! I will then try to accept these people for who they are and maybe finely let go of some of the pain and emotional bagage that I have been carrying around! I have always tried to keep the peace and it seems to have always turned on me. I know this may sound crazy but after suffering physical, mental, emotional, 2 unfaithful husbands, the easiest for me to deal with was the physical abuse because the bruises and pain would go away when the pain from the other did not! Luckily I was not severly physically abused. i would not tell people what was going on either so I feel like it was my fault there too. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us because it has really touched my heart deeply and opened my eyes!!

    • Donna B says:

      God, I thank you for Jan and her desire to seek after you and your will. Give her your eyes to see others through. Give her the courage and the boldness to forgive others as you forgive and forgave her. Fill her with your love and let her extend that love to others that you have placed in her life. Fill her up with yourself, your grace, your mercy, your compassion, your understanding, your love. Show Jan how to extend these things to others. Heal her heart. Draw her close to you. Use Jan so that others will see you in her. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.

      • Donna, thank you so much for praying for me. I did not get to check yesterday but I really needed it this morning! I start counciling this morning and I feel that God has led me to this lady and I can not wait to start! I am going to pring out your prayer and read it every day, maybe several times a day! Thank you again so much.

        • My session was more than I could have ever expected! i can not wait until next week. There were so many things that she opened my eyes and heart to this morning. I know that this will be an ongoing process but it was such a great start! She made me see that I really am worth something. God created me and that I am wonderful and I do bad things but that does not make me worthless. She helped me understand not to allow other people to make me feel worthless, belittle me, or hurt me in any way. The first day of the rest of my life started today! I praise God for this!!

  58. Oh Donna…praise God for your faith and your freedom in forgiving. What painful memories…and yet, God’s call to forgive, because He truly knows what’s best for us. He is our perfect Father. My mother was the one who I had to learn to forgive. Actually, I too chose…to obey God. I knew He was calling me to it. Even though I had to forgive over and over again. Mom stopped by almost daily, though I asked her to respect my boundaries and would feel panicked when I saw her heading toward my door. She was emotionally abusive–critical, hysterical, angry, blaming, and sometimes vicious. She did not know how to love. Now Mom has Alzheimer’s. She is finally on the meds she probably should’ve been on for many, many years. Her memory fails her miserably…and yet, she is happier and kinder than she’s ever been before. Now, at 53, I can enjoy my sweet 81-year-old mother, who never utters a critical word. She’s a pleasure to be with. It’s pretty unbelievable…and a gift that has smoothed over a lot of the past hurts. Bless you!

    • Donna B says:

      Elise,

      So thankful for you and how God is using you to love on your Mom even through the past hurts. I love how God works things out for His glory and for His purposes in all of our lifes. Praising Him for how He has filled you with His forgiveness and how you have extended that forgiveness to your Mom. Praying for you and for your daily choices as well.

      Thanks for blessing me and others in this group with your amazing story of forgivness and love.

      Donna B

  59. Blessings, Donna you said everything one needed to here like if God painted the picture of my past to you, missing out on his love made me not trusting anyone wh osays they loved me with out a a catch and believe it or not i was hard for me to trust that God really loved me but what you said was true, we all have that choice to believing in our Creator and acept the past in order to move on, these words made me see and understanding that i need to stay away from the darkness where i was once and remine in the light i am in presently, that all we are going throu is a test and blessed if he/she that are been tested, thank you for your encouraging words may God continue blessing you and yours

    • Donna B says:

      Angie,

      It’s all God and how He also chooses to use us! I am very humbled, blessed and honored that God would use me to honor and glorify Himself and to change the hearts of others just as He used Renee and her words to change my heart for His purposes.

      Praying for you as you seek the LIGHT and stay in the LIGHT! Praying for God to heal your heart and hurts as only He can. He loves you so much!!

      Donna B

      • Donna thanks, both you and Renee are blessed for allowing us to feel and see that we are not alone, thank you both for allowing God to used your temple to help us, and allowing us to open up to things we wish to scream out and say but could not. for as short as chapter 5 is it hurt me the most so far (have not read the others yet) more than chapter 4 cause it took me back to all past pain from grandma to dad to first, second and third love to be with one now and keep comparing him to what they did to me waiting to see when he will, hit, cheat, lie, used or pretend that he love me to my surprise he is totally different, but truthfully my sister remind me he is not mind my kids are not mind for all is borrowed God give and He can take away, so enjoy God’s blessing for now and know someday He might take it/them away, Father in the name of Jesus I thank You for Your loving kindness I thank You for the hearts for all that knows You and all that don’t, You said that if 99 sheep’s are save and 1 out of the hundred got lost You will go out and look for him/her, so Father if any of us is that 1 lost sheep Father God my prayer is that you take us out of the darkness that have us lost and give us that light to lead us back to You, Father may you strengthen us to do Your will in the name of our Lord Jesus this I pray in Jesus precious name Amen

  60. Angie Hite says:

    I have a lot of forgiving and work to do on letting go of my past too. I would love to read this book.

    • Donna B says:

      Angie Hite,

      We are all a work in progress with the forgiveness and the letting go. I always have to remember that those are a choice as well. Choices that I am faced with every day. Praying for you as you forgive others just as God forgave you.

      Blessings

      Donna

  61. “A choice to believe that He is who He says He is. A choice to believe His promises; a choice to believe I was worth dying for; a choice to be filled with His joy; a choice to let Him be my Father, my Abba Daddy; a choice to live with a confident heart.” By Donna, Your testimony show the cast of doubt and shadows in life, but turns with courage and confidence. Praise the Lord for your strength and your testimony. I have a shadow of doubt that continues to haunt me, in regards to a family relationship situation. I have peace in my heart after admitting for my part in the mistake, for asking for forgiveness from those affected and for lots of praying to our Lord. But my doubt comes from not knowing if I will ever be welcomed again. This is the part of my past that I am having difficultly with. Your words ACCEPT and CHOICE, hit hard at home with me, I have learned and become closer to the Lord with this situation, and I continue to work on forgiveness to release the anger and hurt daily. Thank you for your story this gives me hope and faith, that God is the light to follow forever, even in difficult times or good times. Lifting up prayers for our sister in Christ, especially those in our bible study, that the Lord touches each ones heart and each will continue to seek God as their light for each and everyday. May the Lord continue to bless you, Donna, God Bless, your sister in Christ

    • Donna B says:

      Pam Z,

      So blessed by your encouraging words. So thankful for you and for allowing God to use you. Praying for you and you continue to do the next right GOD thing with your family relationship. Praying for you as wait patiently for Him to do the work and as you pray for your family. Praying for God to continue the growth in your heart and in your life.

      Thanks again for your encouragement.

      Donna B

      • Donna thank you for the prayers,your thoughtful words of prayer bring tears to my eyes, God Bless w Love Sister in Christ……

        • Just when I think all is going to be resolved, the doubt flares up again. Again, it has brought pain fo myself and my daughter. Please pray that situation can be resolved in our hearts, in our love for our family not matter what has happened in the past, and that forgiveness with hope is placed in each of our hearts. For I have shed more tears with the question that have been ask in regards to our character… the pain endured and the escape was to run and hide, sit and cry, but I found that turning to God and discussing it with my daughter brought hope for ourselves, but the doubt still lingers for others. Thank you in advance for the prayers. God Bless

  62. Carol H says:

    Reading Nehemiah this week Chapter 1…I have read it for years…yet, for the first time I noticed it has an amazing prayer in Chapter 1:5 through 11….great cleansing prayer…for life….. Also praying for you through the cough. Hope you know the importance of getting a Whooping cough booster. The one we receive as a child needs a “booster.” I received one a few years ago when I was having my updated Tetanus shot. A lot of these “prolonged coughing episodes” can be possible “whooping cough.” Praying for a quick recovery so you can give that beautiful Aster a hugggg!!!!

  63. Rejected, abused, abandoned, unloved, unwanted but one day Like Donna, God showed me that I had a choice. Other people’s words and actions do not define me. God’s love embraced me, His son died for me, I am His daughter, loved beyond life itself. He chose me, wants me and has promised over and over never to leave me. I remind myself daily that I have a choice; I choose to trust Him. I love the promises of His word, in Jesus I am a new creation, I don’t have to understand this life, just trust the one who holds my future and accept His love for me.

  64. When I read stories like that it amazes me. What people have to go through, how people are shaped, and molded. What an amazing story! Thank you for sharing. I “struggle” to relate in some ways, because I feel as though I don’t have a story to tell. Plain Jane & simple…… and yet I struggle daily, lacking in confidence, lacking in trust…… worrying, etc……

    I am very much enjoying this study!! Thank you!!

    • Donna B says:

      Laurie,

      I think you have a story. You will be amazed at the lifes you touch and not even realize that you are touching them.

      And I’m thinking that God just used your honesty above to touch someone’s heart in this group. You are not alone in your struggles and I admire your courage and boldness in sharing them. Keep turning those pages in A Confident Heart and I’m praying that God will increase your confidence with each line read!

      Thanking God for your courage to share your heart!! And praying for God to increase your belief in Him, your trust in Him and your confidence in Him and in yourself. Praying he takes those doubts away and replaces them with His promises. Cheat a little and read and re-read the promises that Renee shares with us in Chapter 12. She won’t mind that you took a sneak peak at it. I use Chapter 12 every day to beat back my doubts.

      Praying for you and thanking Him for you!

      Donna B

  65. Kim Ward says:

    I never realized how much God loved me till he gave me a revelation about it about a year ago… He opened up my eyes and my heart to see how much he loved me after I had stepped out of his will. God loves us so much, so much to spank us when we rebel… to chastise us. I’m so thankful for God’s love. He is the light, and I truly believe when you step out of God’s will, and you truly come back to him with a repenting heart he will take your wrongs and make them right again.

    Question # 5 Answer:
    When I read the statement in this section that said, “It’s important for us to realize that damaged emotions and insecurities from our past have a powerful influence over how we see ourselves today…” a memory popped into my mind from my past. I dated a guy for about 5 years, and from the beginning to almost the end of it, he always belittled me. He always made me think I wasn’t pretty enough, smart enough, that I talked too much, that I had no worth or significance. I noticed at the time when he would say things that hurt me, I would only get sad or hurt. Some words would make me cry, or really sad. But little did I know how they would “infect” me later on, because I didn’t deal with them at the time. I’m pretty good about always putting a smile on my face even when I don’t feel like smiling. I always wants to help others, or lift others up, and sometimes a smile will do just that. I see how important is to surround yourself with people that ‘affect’ you for the good, and not “infect” you for the bad.

    Just like a sickness, you get an infection… People we hang out with either affect us for the good, or infect us for the bad. What friends are we associating ourselves with? Are they helping us grow in the Lord?… or are they infecting us with their sickness. They that are whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. What are we allowing others to put in our hearts and minds? It’s not the things that go in a man that defileth him, but the things that come out of the heart. Just felt led to share this…

    • Donna B says:

      Kim,

      WOW!! Thanks so much for sharing! Praising Him for how He has revealed Himself and His love to you! I love how He uses different things in our lifes to reveal Himself to us!

      Thanks so much for sharing your heart and your life with us.

      Blessings,

      Donna B

  66. Donna- thanks again for your message of hope! My question for you is can you expand on what you did in regards to the date July 1,2011? I guess what I struggle with in regards to my past is how does one forgive and then never re- visit that past pain? I see myself in your story and God- willing I can move forward to accept and choice just wondering and looking for insight!
    Julie

    • Donna B says:

      Julie,

      I live in Kansas City, Missouri and my mom, sisters and Dad live in Texas. And I don’t get home but a couple of times a year, three times at the most. God kept prompting me to go see my Dad. And my Dad lives a couple of hours from my oldest sister. And in the past, I flat out refused to use “my vacation” or as my mind would tell me, “waste my vacation days” on my Dad. Besides, he never used his on me … yes, I can and did justify so much when it came to my Dad. My heart was concrete hard!! And I knew that I would never go see him by myself because we would have nothing to talk about … dead silence in my mind … yes more justification. So I called my sister as she always hosts a party for the family on the 4th and told her that I wanted to go see him while I was in town. And she about fell out in shock that I wanted to see him!

      So we scheduled the visit for July 1st, 2011 out of convenience for both my sisters and off we went to visit him. My little sister picked him up at the nursing home and we all meet at the local restuarant for lunch. His two sisters and one of my cousins that I hadn’t seen in about 25 years or so also meet us there.

      So that’s why it was July 1st and why the date stuck out to me! It was one of the largest turning points in my life outside of accepting Jesus into my heart!

      And I was just getting ready to lead “A Confident Heart” in my home and had just signed up for Melissa Taylor’s online study of A Confident Heart. God was so preparing my heart for this study and the truths that Renee had laid out in the book. It was all such a God thing! There is so much more to the story and how God used Renee and her story to impact my decision to not only see my Dad, but also forgive, accept and to continue to make the right choices.

      And trust me, I will re-visit my past pain again….probably about Father’s Day this year and then again around July 1st as I head home for my nephews baby shower.. . but I now know what triggers my doubts and my behaviors so I can now anticipate the feelings, the doubts, the anger but as I stated earlier, the rebound time will be less. Renee will share more on triggers in a future chapter.

      This is probably more info that you needed … but I ramble alot … sorry … hope this helps you and I will be praying for you as your move forward toward the LIGHT …. the key is to never loss sight of the LIGHT!!

      Praying dear sister,

      Donna

  67. Thanks for sharing your story. This is all too familiar for me. I didn’t talk to my dad for years growing up. As an adult I learned that I had to accept him for who he is and pray for him. There is nothing more that I can do. He doesn’t always make the best decisions, but no one does. I can’t judge him. That’s not my job. I think it was easier for me to forgive him because my mom had already forgiven him for the abuse she suffered with him. She is an incredibly strong person and I have learned so much through her. My dad will now tell me, when he’s drunk, how proud he is of the woman I have become. I don’t hear it often, but I know that somewhere in there he really is proud of me. I have to remember that he doesn’t know how to show love and that’s ok. My children now sit on his lap and love on him, which makes him feel uncomfortable, but I think he really enjoys it 🙂
    Thanks for this incredible book. It has really opened my eyes and my heart.

    • Donna B says:

      Tricha,

      Thanks for sharing your story.Love how God has given us both the same instructions when it comes to our Dads.

      And I too love Renee’s book and stories. She makes it so real and she is so transparent. And I just love her heart! She makes me smile, laugh and cry all with the same sentence!

      Praying for you as your continue in your A Confident Heart journey!

      Blessings upons blessings for you,

      Donna

  68. Dear Donna,

    This is lovely. Your heart is beautiful. Every word of your testimony is life-giving. Thank you for sharing.

    You are bold. You are brave. You are more than a conqueror. So grateful for your steadfast to His heart. It’s deep and wide and long and high and never-ending . . . for YOU!!

    Much love, Sam

    • Donna B says:

      Sweet Sweet Sam Antha!!

      I so love your heart and your encouragement! You so shine your light for Jesus and for others! Love your servant’s heart and how you love like Jesus! So blessed to have you in my life. Thankful for your amazing gift of friendship.

      Thank you for teaching me to say “Yes” to Him and to His asks!!! Getting excited to your “YES” video to El Salvador and Compassion.

      Love ya Sam!!!

  69. DONNA,

    THANK YOU FOR PUTTING THIS SO I FINALLY SEE WHAT I NEED TO DO. MY FATHER DID THE SAME TO ME. UNFORUNATELY, NOT TO MY OLDER SISTER. THIRTY YEARS LATER AND HE STILL REFUSES TO DO ANYTHING FOR ME. BUT IS AT HER HOUSE DOING FOR HER EVERYDAY. I ALWAYS FELT THAT I WASN’T GOOD ENOUGH, LACKING.

    I AM STARTING TO FIND MY WAY TO MY TRUE FATHER, GOD AND IN HIS EYES I AM JUST AS I SHOULD BE AND JUST AS HE MADE ME.

    THANK YOU TO RENEE AND YOU FOR HELPING ME FIND MY WAY

    • Rhonda G says:

      Praying for you as you let go and let God help you forgive your father and your sister, too.

    • Donna B says:

      Praying for you Kay as you deal with your pain. Praying that you will release it and let it go and give it to God and let Him heal your heart. Crawl up into His lap and give it ALL to Him! Prasing Him for your journey to His heart! And YES! Keep your eyes on HIM!!! He loves you like no other can nor will!!

      Praying and praising Him for you!

      Donna B

  70. Your honesty and your heart are absolutely captivating, thank you for sharing!

    • Donna B says:

      Elena,

      Thank you so much for your kind words. It’s all God and his work in my heart and in my life. He gets all the glory!!

      Donna B

  71. Susan M. says:

    Renee, glad you are feeling so much better, Donna thank you for sharing your story. When I read stories like yours, I think of how many other people are going through times like yours and some worse than others and some have no way out. A verse that kept coming into my mind through chapter 5 reading and than reading your story was Genesis 4:7 ” If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.” Every time we choose darkness it desires to have us but when we choose light we are in the light and we need to stay in the light. But the mastering of choosing the light is a daily learning and listening to the nudging of the Holy Spirit to help us along~~~~~~~~forgiveness is a hard road but you made the right choice, you chose light.

    • Donna B says:

      Susan M,

      Thanks for sharing…especially the verse in Genesis. I had forgotten that one. And you are so right on with your comment about mastering our choosing the light – it is a daily learning and listening opportunity for all of us …. And yep forgiveness is a hard road and it took me many years ….

      Blessings to you,

      Donna B

  72. Rhonda G from Illinois says:

    Thank you for sharing your story, Donna. I love how you said the time it takes to rebound gets shorter as you get better at Making the right choices! Thank you (and Renee) for also reminding me that I have a choice to make–despite my emotions. We can choose to forgive like you and Renee both have shared, and this leads us into light and freedom. Having choice is very powerful and I know this word was meant to bring freedom to many.

    Thanks for sharing the song, too. We sing this worship song at church sometimes, but it hadn’t come to mind as I read. What a perfect representation of all that we are learning about our father and our savior! We are running out of darkness and shame, and oh! What sweet freedom we find there in God’s light. We are free indeed!

    BLESS THE LORD, OH MY SOUL, AND ALL THAT IS WITHIN ME! BLESS HIS HOLY NAME!

    Thanks for the encouragement today! Bless you.

    • Donna B says:

      Rhonda G,

      You are so welcome and thank you for sharing your heart and thoughts here today. I think I am the one walking away so blessed … first by God using Renee and her story to heal my hurts and pain and secondly that God would use mine to heal others. And the best of both of those it that God gets all of the glory!! It is all His doing and His work in and through all of us!

      Blessings and hugs,

      Donna B

  73. Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

    Donna –
    Thank you for sharing your testimony- I too made peace with my Dad- he was an alcholic, He and my Mom would argue & fight so much I was a kid then- eventually this led to divorce- My Dad had an affair and ultimately broke my mom’s heart- He married that woman he had the affair with. I was angry with him but I loved him so it was so hard not having him around helping me with choices, that Dad’s would help their daughters do? how to fix a flat maybe change the oil in the car-I missed out of hugs, birthday presents, didn’t make it to my graduation either- never gave us child support- we survived on welfare. But when I graduated from High School this was 1982 ( I know I’m dating myself) I made it a point to fly to Louisiana and see my Dad for the first time in quite some time-it was my first trip on a plane going that far away from Hawaii…When I got to the airport my stepmom greeted me? I asked “Where’s my Dad” She said he went to the car – he’s crying he can’t believe your a young woman, he only remembers his baby… When we went to the car my Dad’s eyes were red and so was his nose… I hugged him so so hard- and told him “It’s okay Dad-it’s okay” He said “How can you forgive this old fool” I said I forgave you a long time ago…Daddy… and you are my Hero, today and always! I’m making that trip to Lousiana this December to visit with him again – we have kept in touch since then always talking on the phone mailing letters & cards to eachother – while my brother & sister won’t have anything to do with him, I chose to keep in touch and treat him with love & respect and kindness, it’s been over 20 years since we last saw eachother- I’ve battled Breast Cancer, my Dad would call after each of my chemo treatments to see how I was doing- I love him, no matter what happened in the past… we have to move foward.
    So Donna Thank you for sharing such a similiar story… and Thank you for the video- I will hang on to the lyrics:
    INTO THE MARVELOUS LIGHT I’M RUNNING,
    OUT OF THE DARKNESS
    OUT OF THE SHAME
    BY THE CROSS YOU ARE THE TRUTH
    YOU ARE THE LIFE YOU ARE THE WAY!

    “Aloha Ke Akua” “God Is Love”

    Aloha from Hawaii oxoxoxoxox

    • Donna B says:

      Donna from Hawaii!!!

      PRAISING GOD IN MY LOUD VOICE FOR YOU AND FOR YOUR DAD!! And how God has restore your relationship. Love how you love like Jesus!! And YES!!! FORWARD is a great direction to be moving in!!

      Big Hugs from the Main Land and save travels here to see your Dad,

      Donna B.

      • Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

        Thank you so much Donna! You & Renee truly are heaven sent to all of us women who share the same hurts… To all my sisters in Christ Have a Safe & Fun Filled Memorial Weekend! Pray for our Soldiers serving- may they feel the hand of Jesus upon each of their shoulders- And to all those who have been taken from us too soon, Thank you for serving your country with your life-And all our veteran’s you all deserve purple hearts! God Bless all of you.

        ALOHA KE AKUA- “GOD IS LOVE”

        Aloha from Hawaii xoxoxoxoxo

    • August Rose says:

      Donna you are awesome in Christ! Thanks for sharing your post. I am glad I went to visit my father as well. I pray your family heals and finds the hope we have in letting go of the past. God’s blessings on you in Hawaii and I pray healing for you always! August Rose

      • Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

        August Rose-
        What a beautiful beautiful name! I can’t wait to visit my Dad in December! Thank you for your prayers- my two siblings don’t even call him – nor do we keep in touch with eachother. My sister is a drug addict on Meth- I tried so hard to help her- finally I had to give it to God because I can’t help her unless she helps herself-all I can do is pray. My brother- chose to disconnect from the family after my Mom passed away in 2005- He has a lot of anger issues- again I had to give it up to God- I had to pray hard- because I felt the need to fix it-fix my family? But I just couldn’t… I went through Breast Cancer and survived… I did this all on my own,it was the help of friends the helped me through it, because my siblings are the way they are… I forgive them and love them no matter how my heartaches.

        On the lighter side of things…. My Dad has beautiful ocean blue eyes and blonde hair… I have light brown eyes and dark-brown hair… it’s so funny when we get together with the family in Lousiana & Mississippi…

        God Bless you August Rose- I so love your name 🙂

        Aloha from Hawaii xoxoxoxox

  74. Thanks for sharing your story, Donna. And thanks for posting it up, Renee. Truly, those words (Fearful. Betrayed. Abandoned. Unloved. Unworthy. Unwanted.) resonated with me back in my childhood years and it has just recently resurfaced with my current friendship struggles. I really needed to hear those two words again: Accept and Choice. I have had good days when I have come to accept and have chosen to believe that God is for me but then crashed and burned whenever the storm hit hard. Indeed, it is truly a choice and I pray for God’s grace to make the right choices day in and day out. I would love to read the book one day. God bless you…

    • Donna B says:

      JessCC,

      You are so welcomed and praying for you as you make those choices too! Praying God to fill you with His wisdom as struggle with your friendships. Praying that not only to you see God as your Abba Father but that you see Him and experience Him as your friend as well!

      He loves you and your heart!

      Donna B

  75. Jessica says:

    Thank you for sharing, Donna! I’m 24 and still learning how to accept a “dad” that I don’t even know. A “dad” that I have no recollection of and that I’ll probably never meet – unanswered questions will never be answered.

    I looked more into what “Abba Father” means which led me to Romans 8:15-16. I find great comfort in these verses!

    Oh, and July 1 is also my birthday! 🙂

    xo

    • Donna B says:

      Happy Birthday to you on July 1st! A really good day in my calendar these days!! Praying God to fill you will His peace as you deal and live with unanswered questions. Praying for God to fill you with Himself and reveals Himself to you in BIG ways as your Daddy!

      Donna B

  76. Donna’s story spoke to me in the sense that we always have a choice, to become bitter or better; to become a victim or a victor; to not forgive and carry that heaviness or to forgive and be set free.
    God bless you Donna. Thank you for sharing your story with us. So many people you will encourage with this.

    • Donna B says:

      ANA M,

      Thank you so much for your kind words and I love your comment about become a victim or a victor. God so desires and gives us every opportunity in Him to choose victory and to walk in victory!!

      VICTORY AND FREEDOM IN HIM!!! What a great way to live!!

      Donna B.

  77. Gail and Donna,

    Thank you very much!!!!! I normally do not post comments. My heart was actually pounding when I wrote the earlier post. But afterwards I felt a release!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Praise God! He is sooooooooo faithful!!!!!

    Peace and Blessings to all!

    RT

    • Donna B says:

      Praising HIM with you RT!!! Thanks for your boldness and courage!!

      • Donna, I so want to make the right choices and walk in forgiveness! I have been reading the various stories of my sisters in Christ and have been truly touched and blessed! I am praying and looking to the Light as I go from glory to glory. I made the choice to call my mom. Although I did not get an answer (which is typical of her not answering my calls), the most important thing is I called. I did the opposite of what my flesh wanted! I plan to retread chapters 4 and 5 and continue on this healing/forgiving/making right choices journey! Still working out my salvation with fear and trembling!

        You and Renee are a God send!

        God speed to you, Renee and all of my sisters in Christ who are on this healing journey! God is ABLE!!!

        Blessings!!

  78. August Rose says:

    Donna,
    thank you for sharing that. I saw myself. For years I tried to change people or to get the to see what I see but I realized God reveals Himself to those who are seeking Him not those who aren’t open to Him. My job is not to force or pry just to love. My dad was almost the same way. I received a word that I was to get it right with my dad. I was terrified of my dad. I kept getting the same word. Finally I called and he was so excited to hear from me. He told me so many wonderful things that he never said before that my spirit longed to hear! God knew what I needed. I was also able to process the pain of the past and tell him how I really felt. He apologized to me! I cry just typing this. Not long after we rebuilt our relationship my dad was called home to be with the Lord. I so miss him! I thought God played a bad trick on me to take my dad after we made up. I realize now how much pain I would have felt had I of not obeyed. I feel compassion for my two sisters as they were not willing to process the pain or to have any contact with my father. They are still grieving that opportunity and it was in 2008. I praise God for your sharing and I can’t say enough about a Confidant Heart. Each chapter is like peeling back a layer of a beautiful flower and God revealing yet Himself! He is sweeter than the honey on the honeycomb! I am tasting and seeing that the Lord is good with each chapter and each breakthrough that comes from processing. surrendering and turning toward Him The marvelous light! Thanks ladies and much love to you both!

    • Donna B says:

      August Rose,

      Now, you have me in tears! Praising God that His plan for you included restoration with your Dad before he passed away. What an amazing gift that He personally gave you. Love how His thoughts and His plans are higher than ours!

      So blessed and thankful that God is using Renee and A Confident Heart to reveal Himself in new ways to you. I believe that the message that God has given Renee is one that every woman should read and apply to their hearts and their life. So thankful that God included Renee and her story in my healing.

      Have a blessed day and weekend,

      Donna B.

    • Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

      August Rose-

      I’m so glad that you were able to make it right with your Dad before he was called home- I feel the very same as you, my two siblings still have a chance- I just don’t think they will reach out? I love your saying: My job is not to force or pry but to LOVE…sometimes that’s all that’s left to do… LOVE like Jesus would love!

      Thank you for sharing your story too. We are so blesed by Donna B & Renee!

      Aloha from Hawaii xoxoxoxox

  79. One, among many things, that grabbed my heart in chpt 5 was about reciting God’s promise in order to turn our hearts and thoughts toward God and off ourselves. I need to make it a priority to have His promises hidden in my heart. I have horrible fear and anxiety about flying. I avoid it at all costs. Our family is flying to my inlaws this July. I am already fighting the doubt and fear of getting on the plane. As I am reading A Confident Heart, I realize how I need to take my eyes off me and claim God’s promises He has for me. I am thankful for how God is using A Confident Heart and posts like Donna’s to change lives to the glory of God.

    • Donna B says:

      Sherri,

      Thanks for sharing how God is working in your life and heart. Take a look at Chapter 12 in Renee’s book and read it over and over and memorize some of God’s promises as you face your fear of flying. Take em and claim em in your heart for not only that upccoming plane ride but for your every day walk with Him.

      He loves you like crazy!!

      Donna B.

  80. Thank you for sharing. There are so many hurts in our pasts that we need to choose to give over to the Lord and let Him heal and repair. It is only through our giving all our hearts over to Him do we get the gift of true peace. Something all of us long for but so often don’t go about finding it through our Lords healing.

    • Donna B says:

      Chris,

      I love how you talk about His peace. He so wants each of us to live in His peace. And you are so right, it goes take us constantly giving our hearts over to Him. It takes action on our part – that surrendering of our will to His will. Thanks for the reminder.

      Blessings,
      Donna B

  81. Thanks for those powerful words. It is truly a reminder to me that I have a choice in how I am going to conduct myself irregardless of how anyone else is acting. God calls me to walk in the Light of His Word. Thank you so much for that reminder. God Bless.

    Kim Fair

    • Donna B says:

      Kim,

      So blessed and thankful that God is showing up for you in BIG ways. Keep on walking in the LIGHT!! And keep making those right choices, one by one! And as you do, He is drawing you closer and closer to His Heart!!

      Blessings,
      Donna B

  82. For the first time in years I have a joy about the Lord I have longed and prayed for!!! I don’t know why I have struggled so hard to TURN, without success, until now. As I read and reread Ch 5, I am reminded of a Beth Moore lesson one of my friends at work had copied off for me a year & a half ago. In it she illustrates how our thoughts hold us in a prison cell and how God’s truth opens the door of that prison and eventually we are on the outside of it. Anyway, I have known in my head for years that I needed to take my thoughts captive, to quit listening to the voice of lies and darkness in my head. I have known that I needed to get in the Word and find what God says about me, but I always had an excuse and/or an unwillingness to believe Him. Until now! In the Ch 5 section of my journal, I have started writing verses, inserting my name, or me, or mine, or writing His promises in first person (?) so that they are mine alone. I am so excited to get up….the other thing I have struggled with for years…….earlier, so I can seek Him and His promises, His love, His heart for me in the mornings. Honestly, I can’t say that any one particular “past incident” is standing out to me right now, He has taken me through so much already, even in my hard-heartedness, but just getting in the Word and seeking His truth for me……I can feel my perspective of Him changing. I can feel joy returning. I have rediscovered a quiet expectation in meeting with Him that I thought I had lost a long time ago. His Word says that when I seek Him with my whole heart, I WILL find Him!!
    Jesus!! Come out , come out, wherever you are!! LOL! 🙂

    • Donna B says:

      LaDena,

      You have just brought tears to my eyes!! And I am praising Him and singing in His court this morning as to how He has restored His joy to your heart through His words that He gave Renee.

      Your post reminds me of His verses in Philippians 4:8 ” Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”.

      I have learned to take my thoughts and use His filter in Philippians to process those thoughts. If my thoughts do not match up to His scripture, I throw them away. For example, if I have a thought of being unworthy, I take it and filter it. I ask myself is it noble, is ist pure, is admirable …. and if not, it’s thrown away because it is not of God!

      Thanks for sharing your heart and praying for you as you seek Him with your whole heart! He is going to amaze and daze you for His glory!!!

      Blessings,
      Donna

  83. “I took my eyes off God’s strength and focused on my weaknesses.” I don’t know how many times I do this in a day. I’m not proud of it. But it’s a real struggle. I have a fair amount of head knowledge about Chrisianity. I was raised in a Christian home. Consistently attended church. But I’ve come to realize these past couple of years that I was living my parent’s faith and not my own.
    It’s difficult because I used to be a joyful person. Always looking at the positive. Not worrying about things. And now I can’t seem to stop worrying. It’s a struggle because I want that ah-ha moment for things to click. Where my faith outshines any doubts but I’m not there yet. This is an uncomfortable place to be. I won’t give up pursuing the light

    • Donna B says:

      Lord,

      I thank you and I praise you for Missi and her desire to pursue the LIGHT! Fill her up along the journey. Be her fuel, Flame her desire. Be her JOY. Cause her to focus on you and not herself or others. Lead her. Guide her. Move her head knowledge into your heart knowledge. I praise you and I thank you for the words that you gave Renee in Chapter 2, “The only way we’ll have a confident heart is if we move beyond knowing God and relying on Him – to depending on His Word with our whole heart, mind and soul.” I would make Renee’s plea that you would move the gospel of grace from Missi’s head to her heart. Cause Missi to rely on You and Your Word! Encourage Missi. Strengthen Missi. In your amazing name, I pray. Amen.

  84. Thank you for sharing Donna’s story. I am going to print it out to share with my son and daughter. Their father broke so many promises to them and is still doing so. My son has decided not to have any contact with him and hasn’t allowed his father to meet our 2 month old granddaughter. He is supposed to be purchasing a car for our daughter, but I don’t believe it is going to happen since he is dragging his feet.

    I also needed this since my mother was physically present as I grew up but she wasn’t there for me. She ridiculed me in front of my friends when I was a teen and abused and neglected me all of my life. I still struggle with self-esteem issues and wonder how she could treat me the way that she did when i love and adore my children so very much. She now wants “to be close”. This is scary for me since my mom can turn on you in an instant. Once I literally had to throw my children into my car and take off from her home because she got angry about something my son did when he was 4. I have struggled with the question of what will I do if she dies. I wasn’t sure if I could /would attend the funeral. I have wondered if I would even cry.

    After reading this I know that I need to go and see her–as much as I don’t want to I have to go and deal with all of this once and for all. Thank you again for sharing this.

  85. I forgot to add in my earlier comment that I know what it is like to have your parent not know your birthday. I got birthday presents from friends and my mother asked me what the gifts were for — when I told her she asked me when was my birthday. That was really painful when it happened. Maybe it was a blessing though because birthdays are a big deal to me and I make sure that I celebrate them for my children, grandchildren, friends, everyone.

    • Donna B says:

      Lora C,

      Praying for you my friend! Praying that God would guard your heart, your mind, and your thoughts as you meet with your Mom. Praying that God will direct your steps and help you to choose the next right thing that He wants you to take in order to bring healing to your heart. Praying for God to fill you with His boldness and courage as you forgive your Mom and your kids’ Dad. And for your kids as they process all of this too.

      God, go before Lora and make away for the forgiveness to happen. Give her boldness and your courage as she tackles this head-on. Take her hand and guide her steps along this part of her journey to healing. Heal her heart! And I pray the same for Lora’s kids. Move them to forgive and heal them too. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

    • Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

      LORA-
      I’m praying for you sister- Your story touched my heart, My Mom passed away in 2005- I’m so glad I was able to love her despite the many hurts of our past we both forgave eachother- And Lora you will attend her funeral one day and you will cry… It’s just how God works in us and through us.
      Father- please help heal Lora’s deepest hurts and give her courage to face her Mother- May they be able to press foward and draw close to you Lord, May they both have forgiving hearts. I pray all this in precious Son’s Name Jesus Christ. Amen

      Good Luck Lora

      Aloha from Hawaii xoxoxox

  86. Kimberly M says:

    “We hesitate to ask others for forgiveness because they might think we’re the only one who did something wrong, and they won’t think they need to change…You can’t go back and change the circumstances or relationships that have wounded you, but you can go back and process the pain with Jesus…the pain from yesterday can keep you from having confident hope for tomorrow.” (CH. 4) “It’s just that when we focus our attention on ourselves, we turn our attention away from God. We leave no room in our thoughts to listen to what He is thinking about us, because we have given that place away to be occupied by other people’s opinions.” Doubt is a weakness, but only because we turn away from Him for a moment (Peter walking on water). Relying on others’ opinions of us will only keep us in the shadow of doubt, because none of us can see the whole picture of another’s life as God can. Process that pain, ask for forgiveness, and keep looking ahead to the confidence He has for us!

    • Donna B says:

      Kimberly M,

      Thanks so much for sharing. Love how you have made the connections between Chapter 4 and 5 and us having a confident heart! And absolutely love your comment on how we are to keep lookiing ahead to the confidence He has for us!! He is our confidence!! Love that!

      Thanks again for sharing,

      Donna B

  87. Donna,

    Thank you for your transparency and honesty. What a blessing you have brought to so many by choosing to share a portion of your life with others as well as your love for Christ. I am thankful to God for the path that He has given us to walk, as it brought us into friendship and we are able to share our lives, our stories, and our love for God with one another and the world. He is so very proud of you, His chosen child, and He has made beauty from ashes in your life. Shine on sister! Shine on! Love ya!!

    • Donna B says:

      Deanna,

      Love my friend and her encourging words!! Thank you so much for your amazing words and friendship. God blesses me so much in and through the words that He gives you to share others. Love ya back Sista! So thankful and so blessed that He brought us together last August through Renee’s book and Melissa’s online study!

      Love ya bunches and bunches.

      Donna

  88. Herbrews 12:2 comes to my mind “Looking to Jesus the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”

    “Be ye holy as I am holy” – this comes with a price, laying down our lives and reputations, taking up our cross and following Him.

    Thank you for sharing such a great testimony as it encourages us to push forward for the prize that awaits us when we leave these mortal bodies and join our Faithful High Priest who is making intercession for us daily.

    • Donna B says:

      Sharon,

      Love those verses!! Thanks for sharing them with us. And yep, we must, we must , we must keep our eyes on the PRIZE – JESUS!!!

      Thanks much,

      Donna B

  89. Wow, thank you Donna for your story, and thank you Renee for sharing it with us. Look at how many of us have such similar childhood nightmares! Mine as not much better and I think I have blocked all the bad out of my mind over the years so I don’t have to deal with it. I know this probably haunting me everyday and I don’t even realize it. My earthly father is no longer living and I regret I never had a relationship with him and to be truthful I have always been jealous of others that had a love for their father, but I have come to know my Heavenly Father and realize He will never let me down. I thank God that I grow closer to him everyday.

    • Donna B says:

      Kelly,

      So sorry for your loss and your pain. I feel it alongside of you. Praying for God to guide you in letting go of that pain and being filled with His love, His care, His concern, His grace, His mercy and His compassion. Praying for Him to fill you with His boldness and courage to just let it all go, never to pick it up again. Laying it all at is feet…at the cross of Jesus. And I’m praising Him for the work that He has done and is doing in your heart! Praying too that you can let go of that regret as God does not want us to live in a cycle of defeat. Praying for God to finish the work in your heart that He has already started. And we have that promise in His Word to claim as our own.

      Thank you so much for sharing your heart with us. Praying for God to do what He does best … heal our hearts and make Himself known to us in new ways.

      Donna B

  90. Kimberli says:

    Thanks Renee for being a vessel for God’s Word. I know God is making changes in me to become the Proverbs 31 woman He wants me to be! I would love to give this book to my bestie! I already have the e-book. I love it!

    • Donna B says:

      Love how you are willing to share Renee’s incredible story with your bestie!!! Love it!!!

      Donna B

  91. christine lowe says:

    Dear Donna
    Thank you for so faithfully answering each post. You made me feel special with your reply. I did read Psalm 139. There are so many famaliar truths in it. I realized that it is a song the Sons Of Korah sings. I think you would enjoy listening to them. Their songs are all psalms. Psalm 139 is called Still with You. I like to have my bible open and follow along to the psalm they are singing. So glad you are part of our bible study.

  92. Kristi Stirler says:

    I remember making that same choice with my dad and that seems to have been the easy choice. The harder choices are treating my husband as a man, not another child. They are choosing to go to God first with problems, not my friends. When doubt creeps in it is so hard to remember that I am God’s chosen child! I am not the circumstances I am in, I am a child chosen by the Almighty…thank you for this study!

    • Donna B says:

      Kristi,

      Thanks for sharing. And yes you are a GOD’s child!! And He loves you like beyond measure!!

      Donna B

  93. Chapter 5 really hit a chord with me! I have always doubted my abilities because of things and situations that have happened in my past. Learning to TURN and believe what God says about me is the only way to break free of doubt and worry and I am going to do just that! And i will have “This little light of mine” playing in my head each time any doubt or fear starts creeping back. FAITH over FEAR! 🙂 Thanks so much for all you do Renee, you are truly a blessing to us all!

    • Donna B says:

      Alicia,

      Love your FAITH over fear comment!!! Praying for you as break free of those doubts and worry! Thanks so much for sharing,

      Donna B

  94. So just how can I get past my hurt to make the choice? I have forgiven the person that sexually abused me as a child. I have moved on. I have forgiven My ex husband for betraying me and committing adultery not once not twice but three times last while I was suffering from preterm labor and having been hospitalized to carry my baby to term. But, how just how can I forgive myself. How could I have put myself in those situations? How did I make such bad choices? How did I marry that man and trust in him to be a father to my daughters? How could I have made such a bad choice? I married a man who would be an alcoholic and abusive. See all the things you were saying about your father are how my girls have had to live. He never pays his child support; he is not involved in their lives for the most part. He is drinking and dealing with his new family. He missed birthday after birthday. He would say he is coming to something and not show up. He did make it to my oldest daughter’s graduation 2 years ago only to bring his pregnant girlfriend 15 years younger than him and said surprise you going to be a sister again. My daughter was so upset. When she went away to college he was not there. He could have done something bought her a pack of sheets, but no nothing. And then last year this daughter found herself pregnant. Her father was furious how could she he was too young to be a grandfather. I thought oh why we expect him too he was never their father. Our grandson has since been born and is an amazing blessing from God. How could I have made this choice for them? I have put them both through so much pain. God has blessed me with an amazing husband a godly man. He has been a “daddy to my daughters for the past 15 years. We have parented our girls as well as the two children we have had together. So they know what love is and what a dad is suppose to be. Sometimes this only makes it harder for them. They see everything their real dad is not. Sometimes they even lash out at my husband for being the dad he is. It is not fair but, I understand. The last two chapters have been hard for me. Yes, I have beat myself up for years. I know God wants to heal me but, HOW????At times I felt like Ok I gave it all to god it is over. No, more guilt!! They slowly it creeps back into my life and I am left crying out LORD WHY? I have repented for my poor choices and for not always following his ways. I just need to be set free.

    • Donna B says:

      Pray… Pray …. Pray and pray some more! And forgive yourself and extend grace to yourself. Don’t want to be preachy here … but it’s all about the praying and forgiveness. And think on the blessings that God has given you through your choices. Your daughters, your grandson, your new current husband. And let the rest go. Jesus has already died for those choices …. don’t keep hammering in the nails. Lay it all at the foot of the cross …at the feet of Jesus. He loves you and wants to carry those burdens for you. Let Him.

      Lord, fill Julie up with your gift of forgiveness for herself. And fill her up so much that the forgiveness flows outward to others. Fill her with your love, your grace, your compassion. Cause Julie to lay those struggles at your feet to not pick them up again. Cause her to focus on you and not on the things that she struggles with. And do the same for her kids. Be the centerpiece for that family. Focus their thoughts on you and your love for them. Allow them to find their worth in You and You alone. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

      Will continue to pray for you and your family,

      Donna B

      • Thank You Donna bless you. I am refocusing on Jesus and him alone. I am ppraying for him to hold me close and rebuking the lies I am believing. Thanks so much for your prayers.
        In Christ,
        Julie

  95. This story touched me where I live. The story may be different but the choices are there for me to make too. Thank you for sharing.

    • Donna B says:

      Vicki,

      So thankful God chose to use my story to touch your heart. Praying for you as you make those right choices one by one. Praying for God to glorify Himself through your choices and your life.

      Donna B

  96. what a beautiful music video. Donna, your story brought me to think about some of the things from my childhood i have tuskec aeaya nd bot dealt with. as i work through the book, Renee, i hope to be able to face them and forgive and cease the resentment and pain of being fearful and never good enough.
    off to finish chapter 5. thank you both:)

    • Donna B says:

      Julie,

      Praying for God to fill you with His courage and boldness as you face your past. Praying for His strength as you forgive others and praying that He will remove your doubts and replace them with His amazing promises.

      Thanks for sharing and I too loved that video and love singing it on Sunday mornings at church.

      Blessings,

      Donna

  97. Appreciate your story of encouragement. I had to leave my SS class on Mother’s Day because they made everyone go around and say something extraordinary about their mother. After years of hurt and abandonment, what was I suppose to say–I had nothing to say. I left before my turn came and went to a park and cried for an hour. Then recently, I saw a post about this book online and actually purchased it just a few hours ago before reading this post. I am so excited to read it and hoping it will help me as well. I am tired of feeling the burden of rejection.

    • Donna B says:

      Traci,

      I love God’s perfect timing!! So thankful that you found Renee’s book and purchased it and also found this amazing online study. Praying for God to fill you with His promises as you turn those pages. Also praying for you as you process your past and as you allow God to heal your hurting heart and works His gift of forgiveness in your heart.

      So thankful that you joined us on this journey.

      Donna B

  98. Marsha Calhoun says:

    This brought tears to my eyes…I have to admit I had a wonderful and loving, doting father..My children have not been so fortunate…I feel like a total failure at times because I did not intend to have these children then raise them in a broken home. I see my oldest struggling with pure hate..I see the youngest, who is disabled, oblivous to the changes and not being able to cope with what has been forced upon her..I feel powerless to help them as a mother should..I do not know what it is like to have a father who isn’t what he should be..but yet I see it happening to my own children! I want to help them heal..even though the mother bear in me wants to lash out on their behalf! I am, just this week!, struggling to hang on to my relationship with God, questions, hurt, anger…yet I hold on! this was powerful for me..and I just think it was God given..bless you

    • Donna B says:

      Lord, please fill Marsha with your strength to hang onto You. Fill her with your courage and your boldness to cope with things as they are and fill her with your love so that she might forgive those that have harmed her. Fill her with your promises in such a way that she can grasp and hold onto those when she begins doubting and questioning you. Protect her kids and their hearts from the hurts. Guide and direct Marsha as she ministers to her children. Give her your eyes to see others through. I pray for her oldest. I pray that you would allow Him to release the hate that is holding in and replace it with your love and your peace. Transform hearts from the inside out for your glory. Fill Marsha with your amazing love so that it overflows beyond measure. Direct Marsha’s eyes to the LIGHT. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  99. Dealing with some of these same issues right now! Would love to have a copy of your book!

    • Donna B says:

      Tamera, praying for God to guide and direct your thoughts and heart as your process through your issues. Praying that your eyes and focus will be directed towards Him.

      Donna B

  100. Amanda Huffer says:

    I just read this and ot brought me to tears. I had an instance last July as well. It wasnt with my father figure but it with someone much more dear, my spouse. I can not even begin to explain the extent of all those mentioned emotions as they swirled in my head 24/7. God showed me that I had to forgive and let go. I had to let Him work on things. It was such a revealation and has been with me throughout it all. I still have attacks to this day on my mind and my heart as the devil continues to try and tear it all apart again. Each time, I fight him off and we win with God. Without Him and the hope that He brings I am not sure where we would be today. But I am more than thankful for where we are. We are growing and changing for the better through something the devil meant for harm. God works all for His glory….good and bad. And we are receptive and allowing it. He is leading us into testimony and bringing more to Him. We are looking into ministering to other couples and men and women individually. He has so much in store for us and there is so much glory to be seen through something that was meant only for harm. “All things work together for good: to them that love God.” Romans 8:28

    • Donna B says:

      Amanda,

      Praising God for His healing in your relationship with your spouse YAY God for showing you that you had to forgive and let go. And praising Him for your obedience to his prompting! Love how He prompts us to do things that are in best interests when we don’t that they are!!

      Thanks for sharing!

      Donna B

  101. Janelle says:

    Struggling with those exact things from my ex-husband. They sometimes rear their heads (like this morning) and create conflict in my current relationship. My frustration grows because when I feel hurt (by being reminded of past behaviors & situations, etc.) then my current man feels hurt. Then I feel worse.

    • Donna B says:

      Praying for you Janelle. Praying that God gives you the courage to let go and let God take those struggles from you. Praying that he takes those past thoughts away and replaces them with His promises. And lean into Him for His healing.

      Thanks for sharing,

      Donna B.

  102. Renee,
    Reading your post above is a flashback to my childhood that brings tears to my heart as I grew up with an abusive mother and an alcoholic father he has since passed from alcohol induced dimentia, at the age of 9 or 10 we acquired a step-father fresh out of prison, and at the age of 16 another step-father that treated us with some semblance of normalcy. I learned long ago that I had a choice to accept this behavior as a lifestyle or to change when I left home to start my own family. While I was successful in preventing the behavior patterns from becoming something my children experienced, my heart cannot wrap itself around the concept of God being able to forgive all that has happened or my hardened heart towards the people I know I should have a warm loving relationship with. I know in my mind that I am saved and that God has a plan for me that is beyond anything I can imagine but my self image has been so damaged that I struggle daily to find peace. I am going to read this book and do the accompanying study!

    • Donna B says:

      Renee, so thankful that you have made the comittment to read and do Renee’s study. It will change your life and your heart. Praying for God to reveal Himself in new and exciting ways for you as your turn the pages and read each word. Praying for God to wrap His heart around yours and give you His understanding and praying that He uses Renee’s book and His Word to soften your heart and that He will show you how to forgive as He forgives us.

      Thanks for sharing your heart here with us,

      Donna B.

  103. Mary Hayes says:

    what a wonderful testimony & video with music/lyrics ~ the video with pictures & lyrics were extremely important to me, because I’m deaf & can’t hear the music, so the visual was comforting to me ~ it really touched home for me in a different way than hers. I had loving adoptive parents, but my mother was critical & overprotective because I’m deaf with health issues. The language barrier & the lack of family support to me & my family makes me feel unwanted, unloved, abandoned by family, as well as finding out that my birthmother doesn’t want to meet me nor wants her family to know about me ~ I understand the pain of rejection & abandonment; but so glad we all have a loving heavenly father who never leaves us, nor forsakes us. I strive to conquer the challenges with God on my side & my strong willness helps me defeat the odds; but over time, that gets weaker with each bad experience. I wish people would look beyond the handicap & see the person I am. I would love a copy of your book, so that I can have a confident heart & share it with my friends. I always try to share God on my facebook & what He does for me. God bless you for opening your heart to us. I’m sorry you had to endure such pain from your father & I hope/pray the Lord has healed you from the wounds & shows you that He never forsakes nor leaves us.

    • Donna B says:

      Mary, love your heart and your encouraging words and amazing story. Thanks so much for sharing it here with us. And I love that video as well. It’s one of my all time favorites. And I too am praising and thanking God for the work that He is doing in each ladies’ heart as we read through Renee’s story. God uses Renee in some amazing ways to impact our hearts for His kingdom and His purposes. And I covet your prayers. Thank you so much for praying for me. I will take all the prayers I can get, because I need them every hour of every day.

      Blessings and thanks again for sharing,

      Donna B

  104. You ever read something that hits you in the gut? Donna’s story of when she was a child did that to me. I have been walking through a time of healing these past three years, guided by the book “Healing for Damaged Emotions”. I feel I need to write my story down. Not necessarily to share with the world, but to refelct – often – of the healing He has brought to my life. And if I have an opportunity to share it, ok then.

    But what stood out to me from Donna’s story, besides the abuse, was when she wrote:

    “God took my acceptance one step further. He told me I had a CHOICE! A choice to believe that He is who He says He is. A choice to believe His promises; a choice to believe I was worth dying for; a choice to be filled with His joy; a choice to let Him be my Father, my Abba Daddy; a choice to live with a confident heart.
    And it’s up to me to make those choices 24/7. Not just on Sunday. Not just at 9am when my day starts – but constantly make those choices.”

    God is showing me the same thing through this time in my life. The healing has come, but I need to choose daily to believe His word, His promises. In my heart has been planted “renewing of my mind”. My thoughts want to follow my emotions, but God is showing me if I continue to focus on His promises, what He has shown me to be true (not the lies of the enemy that held me captive so long) that is how my healing will continue.

    Something else I have found to be true during this time of healing. “Going there”, to those memories and facing them, is hard, scary, and at times I wanted to run (why else do you think it took me three years, lol). But God is faithful. He is trustworthy. All things from Him are good. So, I want to thank you for sharing your story, for “going there”, cause I know it’s not easy. It encourages me to share my story (someday).

    • Donna B says:

      Daisy, thank you so much for your comforting words. And you should write down your story for your healing. I was so overwhelmed on Thursday morning when I opened Renee’s blog and saw my story on her blog, I experienced this amazing peace and healing as I read my words. It was in Him drawing me to share my story with Renee that added that amazing healing touch to my heart. So hard to explain, but I will never forget the feeling or will I ever have the words to speak my heart to Renee in how she has blessed me and how God has used her as a catalyst for my healing. Praisng God for Renee and the story that He has written upon her heart.

      Blessings,

      Donna B

  105. Donna,
    I hurt for that little girl who went through all that, especially from someone who should have been your protecter and I see Jesus weeping for her too. Below is a link for a song that talks about a might Savior who wants to redeem our stories. Just looking at the number of posts, I am thankful that your story has helped so many. Honor and praise to Jesus a mighty Savior who can redeem all our stories.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kN1MvK7Y-iY

    • Donna from Honolulu, Hawaii says:

      Marsha-
      Thank you for sharing this video & lyrics to “Here I Am” by Down here- I enjoyed it. Funny how God makes us listen not with our ears but with our heart.

      Have a wonderful Memorial Weekend.

      Aloha from Hawaii oxoxoxox

    • Donna B says:

      Marsha, thank you so much for your tender and caring thoughts towards me. And I too am praying that God will use the story that He gave me to bring Him honor and glory for His purposes – not mine. That it would draw each of us closer to His heart and His gift of grace would overflow from each of us into the lifes of those that may not know him or that may be suffering in pan.

      Praising Him and thanking Him for your heart,

      Donna B

  106. Lisa A. Villarreal says:

    This described my life growing up. It took me accepting GOD’s love and reading His Word to finally forgive and accept him as he is. He has since accepted the Lord but hasn’t changed all of his life. When I got married, I felt I had someone who could be the husband to me that my mom didn’t have and a father to our kids that I didn’t have. After 24 yrs., he wanted out. All those childhood feelings resurfaced, but was more devastating, painful, hurtful and total disbelief because he knows the Lord, served Him and raised our children in the Lord. It has taken almost
    2 yrs. to finally allow myself to know without any doubt, that HE loves, cares and finds me worthy just the way I am. Would be so appreciative of a copy to strengthen myself and pass on and on and on to help other women. Blessings!

    • Donna B says:

      Lisa, thank you for sharing your story with us. And prayng that God will fill you with His confidence. Praying for Him to take those doubts and replace with His amazing promises. You are LOVED. He CHOSE you and He REDEEMED you!! Hold onto those truths and claim them as your own because they are yours.

      Blessings,

      Donna

  107. Michelle says:

    Thank you for sharing. This hits home.

    • Donna B says:

      Michelle, you are so welcome and praying for you as you process it all. Praying for God to use it as a source of encouragement for you.

      Donna B.

  108. reading this brings peace to our current situation, i can hardly wait to read more on God’s word and redemption

    • Donna B says:

      Carrie, so blessed by your words and excitement to keep turning the pages. You are going to love the remaining chapters and Renee’s “How To’s”.

      Blessings to you,

      Donna B

  109. What a powerful story of pain and the freedom of forgiveness. I’ve been working through issues with my earthly dad for quite a few years now – and this has been a reminder to me of the power of forgiveness and acceptance of a person (in this case a dad!) Thanks for the challenge – and it’s always a great day to start a new chapter in my relationship with my dad!! Will be praying for him with a renewed passion!! Thanks so much for sharing!!

    • Donna B says:

      YAY God!! Love watching God at work in your heart. I can read your excitement to move forward and towards the Light in your comments. Praying that God draws you and your dad not only closer to each other, but also closer to God.

      Blessing for you and yours,

      Donna B.

  110. What a post! Thank you! No other words are needed…you said it all!

    • Donna B says:

      Debbie,

      Thank you for taking the time to read it and comment.

      Praying for God to bless you in and through the story that He gave me to share and through Renee’s story.

      May He bless you beyond measure,

      Donna B

  111. Kay Bender says:

    As I read Donna’s story it brought up many memories. My father was an alcoholic and did not show any love. As I grew he resented that I was physically handicaped. After my parents devoriced I often was hurt many times. I often got angry and eventually would not go anywhere with him. After the birth of my first child he sent word that he wanted to meet my husband and see our son. I had not seen nor heard from him in 10 years. We went, but he never showed. I never saw him again. He died 2 years later. Years later the Lord enabled me to forgive him, letting go of all anger, bitterness and resentment for thing he had done. I was able move forward in my life.

    • Donna B says:

      Kay, so sorry for your pain. And yet so thankful that God has shown you how to forgive your Dad and to let go of all that anger, bitterness and resentment. Praising God for the work He is doing in your heart.

      many many blessings,

      Donna B

  112. Michelle says:

    Thank you, Donna for sharing your story. My eyes teared up and my heart was overjoyed that you found Jesus and made peace with your dad and yourself. My father was an alcoholic and there were many times I was afraid of him as I was too young to understand. I remember having to “drive” home while sitting on my dad’s lap when I was 7. I steered and he pressed the gas and brake petals. When I was 9 I “drove” again only from the passenger seat and for a much longer distance. I remember my father coming home drunk, stumbling down the hallway as he entered the house. I remember the fights between my mom and dad. Alcoholism runs deeps in my family. Although the scars have healed and I have long since forgiven my dad, I remember the pain and the distance that was between my father and I for years. I’ve only been a Christian for about 3 years and had I known Jesus during that time the painful years, the hate, the doubt – all that negativity I felt toward myself and my father would have been drowned out by the light of Jesus. Thanks again, Donna for sharing. I’m so happy that you live each day for Christ.

    • Donna B says:

      Michelle, So thankful that your scars have healed and that you are moving forward towards the light. And I am praising Him for you and how he has revealed himself to you and to others. Praying for your heart as you continue your journey to his heart.

      Blessings,

      Donna B

  113. Ruth Otwell says:

    2 friends immediately came to mind when I read this, so I’m sharing with them. In fact, I’ve been praying for the dad of one for a year now, even though I do not like this man at all. But – he “deserves” Christ’s redemption as much as I do. Forgiveness, & the freedom it brings, are both so central to our effectiveness as a believer. Thanks for sharing.

    • Donna B says:

      Ruth, praying for you as your share with your friends. And I love your faithfulness in praying for your friend’s Dad for over a year. What a blessing you are to your friends and their Dads. Thanks for loving like Jesus!

      Blessings,

      Donna B

  114. Rebekah says:

    it’s so easy to place blame…to let others control your emotions. it takes CHOICE to stand up and say you will not let them have that control and take responsibility of how we live.

    recently, i have faced some very heart-breaking life changes. i have allowed my husband to label me in the ways Donna described of her father. i am really struggling with the decisions made recently. i choose this day to not be known by the names of defeat, but the names of victory from my Father! i am cherished, treasured, loved, beautiful, worthy, strong and victorious!

    I read this verse recently and it really jumped out to me…it made me realize though my life be thrown upside down and sideways, God is constant and He is always with me…loving on me…giving me a sense of peace.

    Though the mountains be shaken
    and the hills be removed,
    yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
    nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
    says the Lord, who has compassion on you.
    ~Isaiah 54:10

    • Donna B says:

      Rebekah,

      Love how you are taking the promises that God has given you and claiming them for yourself! Praising Him for how He drew you to this amazing verse in Isaiah. Love how He is showing you and telling you that His love for you will not be shaken. Thank you so much for sharing your heart and this verse.

      Blessings,

      Donna B

  115. Just want to thank you for sharing your story today. I grew up with an angry father. Thankful to have worked through that past (to a certain degree) and been able to forgive him. Able to enjoy a relationship, though not all that I would have liked, accepting it for what it can be.

    I need to share with my fellow sisters….God has so planned for this study at this time for me… you see my husband has been working though his addiction to pornography, had been doing well, until yesterday. While I am hurt; my Confidence is not in him but in Him. I’m going to face the light and not allow the shadow to take back the ground hard won.

    • Donna B says:

      Kim,

      Praising God for how is working in your heart and your Dad’s heart. Forgiveness is always a good thing!

      Lord, I lift Kim’s hurting heart to you and ask that you would fill it with your love, your care and your concern. Fill her with your strength as she continues her quest to face the Light and move away from the shadows. Your Word also tells us that with you all things are possible, so I’m asking that you would take this desire, this addiction away from Kim’s husband. Remove the desire and his thirst for porn and replace it with a desire to thirst and be addicted to You and to Your Word. Praising you and thanking You for Your perfect timing for this study for KIm. Praising you that Kim is finding her confidence in you. Thank you for how You are drawing Kim to yourself and to your promises. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  116. Miss Penny says:

    I’d like to enter your drawing for your book. My daughter has read it and highly recommends that I read it as well (she’s 5 states away). I’m currently unemployed and am unable to purchase one just now.

  117. Donna, I did not experience this myself, however, my mom who is at the age of 76 has. Over and over I hear her and my dad talk about what a horrible homelife with her father that she had. As a result, I really feel she is bitter, and still angry, and has no joy in her life. My sisters and myself are always reminded that our mom had a terrible childhood. We understand the pain, however, she has 7 grandchildren, and 2 great grandchildren that love her and we want her to experience the “joy” in them. She has never let go, and let God. We don’t feel we can say…”move on…” I am hoping that this book would give her some freedom to finally let go, and live a happy life rather than dwelling on the horrible childhood she had. She is missing so much as a result of this. We too, feel she is not “happy” that we are all happily married and have raised and are raising our children in christian homes. Thank you for allowing me to share. I am so glad I came upon this site. In Him, L.R.

    • Donna B says:

      LR,

      Praising God for drawing you here to Renee’s blog. It’s an amazing place to share the love of Jesus and talk God things with some amazingly incredible women. Praying for you and your Mom as you minster to her. Praying that He will provide the words through you that will move your Mom to His Joy. Prayng for God to work and move your Mom’s heart.

      May He bless you abundantly,

      Donna B

  118. Bridgette says:

    God gave me Phil. 1:6 as a high school senior, but living with the abandonment of divorce and the stigmatism of bi-polar disorder, I have not had confidence in His plan for me. At age fifty-three, I still believe He has plans for me –to give me a hope and a future…most days. I desire a heart 4 Him as I seek to develop “Take Heart Ministries” to encourage one another and lift each other up. I struggle with wanting a public ministry,but for now I am on the shelf….Very hard for an out-going sanguine like me.

    • Donna B says:

      Bridgette, God does have a plan for your life and it does include HOPE and a FUTURE in Him. Praying for you as He reveals his plans for your life. Praying that God will fill you with His confidence and His love in such a way that you know that it can only becomng from Him,

      Many blessings,

      Donna

  119. Priscila Tan Seterra says:

    Dear Donna,

    I was so encouraged by your story. Through your story, your not so pleasant childhood times with your dad up to the time you grow up as a woman of God, I am encouraged by how you obediently trust and follow God by making choices/decisions that are aligned to His will. Just last year, I had painful experience with someone I considered as my best friend. I was hurt then and bitterness and hatred started to grow in my heart for her. Because of this, I have noticed that my relationship with God was not going right each day. Since then up to this time, I am asking God to take away the pain, bitterness and hatred in my heart because I could not bear anymore the difficulty of living each day with these sins in my heart. But now when I read your story, I was encouraged to imitate how you decide and make right choices and trust God no matter what. I was also inspired when you shared that your rebound time gets shorterand shorter as you learn to make godly decisions and choices. Today, I will do the same, I will make God as true and eternal best friend so I would be able to forgive my best friend who had caused many painful emotions and bitteness in my heart. And I pray that eventually, all bitterness and hatred I have in my heart for will be replaced by unconditional love through the love, grace and mercy of God. Amen.

    thanks for sharing your story. It gives glory to His name.

    • Donna B says:

      Priscella,

      I am so sorry for the pain that you have experienced with you relationship with your friend. And at the same time, so thankful that God has used that experience in your life to draw you closer to Him. Praying that God will fill you with His strength as you choose to release the bitterness and hatred in your heart. And praying for an even greater strength for you to leave that bitterness and hatred at the feet of Jesus. Praying for God to direct your choices as you make them one by one. And that He will replace all of your doubts with His promises, His grace, His mercy, His love, His kindness, and His discernment as you keep traveling towards the LIGHT.

      Blessings and thank you so much for sharing your heart,

      Donna B

      • Donna B says:

        Priscila, please forgive me for spelling your name wrong. I have a Priscella in my life and my crazy mixed up brain went there as I was replying to your story.

        And once again, thank you for sharing the hurts of your hearts here not only with me, but with Renee and this amazing group of women.

        Have a great Memorial Day weekend,

        Donna

        • Priscila Seterra says:

          Dear Donna,

          Your reply to my message and prayer for me means a lot to me, misspelling my name is of no importance to me :). Again, I admire your openness and courage to share your life with all of us. Your story have driven me to a new level of forgiveness and love. More blessings!

  120. Fannie in Kansas says:

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. I have been encouraged by this study although I have not gotten a book. Thank you for your ministry. God bless

    • Donna B says:

      Fannie,

      So thankful that God is using this study to encourage you and draw you closer to Him.

      May He continue to bless you in amazing ways as you journey towards His heart,

      Donna B

  121. Hi Donna, Thank you for sharing your story. I let all the following words Fearful, betrayed, abandoned, unloved, unworthy define my life for a long time. Due to things that happened to me, but I am slowly beginning to step out of the darkness & into God’s light. One day at a time… God Bless

    • Donna B says:

      Karyn,

      Praising God that He is calling you out of the darkness and into the Light of His love. Praying for you as you take those daily steps towards Him and His love,

      Donna B.

  122. Actually I felt so sad for that little girl who had to experience such pain and sorrow…but so thankful that God in His mercy reached down and helped her find healing and grace to overcome. God is frugal…He uses everything the good, the bad and the ugly…with love He takes the broken pieces of a life in His hands and makes something beautiful from ALL the pieces. He is amazing. Thanks for sharing, Donna.

    • Donna B says:

      Carla,

      Thank you so much for your tender heart. And I am praising Him with you for how He has pulled me out of those dark shadows and has set me upright in His Light. And I am loving how He is getting all the glory and that He can take and use the story that He has given me to bring others closer to Him.

      To HIM be ALL the glory,

      Donna B

  123. Sharon Wright says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience with me. I come from many generations of alcoholiam, and Motherless or Fatherless children. God has been so good to me, and blessed me in so many ways, He has brought the right people, book, or just a short story like you wrote to me to help me heal, learn and grow. I still struggle with sadness some days, particularely with my Mom. She has been so damaged by her childhood, and can be very negative or depressing. I don’t know if the devil is still trying to bring me down through her or what, because I struggle with my relationship with her. I love her and feel loyal, and I know she loves me. But sometimes it feels as if all her happiness rest on me, and thats hard. I will continue to pray, and know that miracles happen in peoples lives. Thank you for being so open. God Bless, Sharon

    • Donna B says:

      Sharon,

      Thank you so much for sharing a glimpse of your story. Praying for God to fill you with His peace as He leads you down His path of forgiveness, love and joy. Praying that God will fill you with His joy as you minister to your Mom and as both of your hearts heal. Praying also that God will fill your Mom with His joy and peace and with Himself.

      May He become the Joy of your heart as you seek His face,

      Donna B

  124. Blessed by GOD using you all <3

  125. KAY PARRISH says:

    I HAD PROBLEMS WITH MY DAD GROWING UP. NOTHING COMPARED TO DONNA’S. IT WASN’T AFTER HE BECAME SICK AND MY FAMILY BECAME MY PARENTS CAREGIVER DID I LEARN TO LOVE MY DAD AS A DAD AND REALIZE I WAS LOOKING AT THINGS WRONG. I PRAISE GOD I HAD THAT TIME WITH MY PARENTS. I WOULD LIKE TO WIN A COPY OF YOUR BOOK FOR MY DAUGHTER. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOURS KAY

  126. christine lowe says:

    Rereading ch 5 and thinking about forgiveness and letting go got me thinking about how hard it is to forgive myself. You see I thought I married my dream man. I was 19 and thought I wasn’t worth much. As that marriage ended I was pregnant and thought I was worth less. I grew up without a dad and now I was going to have ababy that would have to grow up the same way I did. I was so afraid I would ruin this childs life I gave her up for adoptionwithout ever seeing her. I’m crying now just thinking about her. I just wanted her to have a better life and yet the sorrow is still there,thinking if I was just a little stronger I could have kept her.. I thought I would never get married again but Several years later I met a wonderful man. We just celebrated our 33rd anniversary. When we got married he said he didn’t want kids and I was ok with that because I didn’t deserve to have kids after what I did. I turned 30and discovered after time and therapy I wanted a child. We tried,went to fertility docs only to discover I had premature ovarian failure and would never have children. I still can’t see God’splan in this and I think it keeps me from giving God my total trust. I want a closer relationship with Him but I can’t seem to get there. I hope one day it will happen but I’m not sure it will ever happen. I guess what I need is more prayer but it’s hard.

  127. TheresaK says:

    I too have been given a choice, to stay in a marriage where my husband has been unfaithful or to file for divorce and go on my own way.. But for the past 4 yrs I have decided to stay married and to trust that God is going to restore my marriage.. I thought it would happen by now, but our timing isn’t God’s timing… Thru this time I have grown so close to God , even though I am not sure what his plan is for my life, right now I have peace that it is to continue to love and pray for my husband…

    • Donna B says:

      Teresa K,

      Prayihg for you and your and marriage. Praising God that He has drawn you closer to His heart during this time and that He has filled you with His peace. Praying for strength as you make the next right choices and praying for God to restore your marriage.

      Donna B

  128. Donna B says:

    Christine,

    So sorry for your pain and hurting heart. And you are correct, sometimes God doesn’t reveal the fine details for our lifes until they actually occur. But the most amazing news and the bigger picture can be found in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” HE HAS PLANS TO PROSPER US AND NOT TO HARM US. And His plans include our hope and our future. HE IS OUR HOPE AND HE IS OUR FUTURE!

    The sad part is that I used to stop reading at the point because I wanted it all given to me …. and preferably on a big silver platter where all I had to do is sit there….but then God prompted me to read a couple of more verses ….. “Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.” (verses 12-14)

    You see, I was missing a couple of steps … steps that required action on my part …I had to call out to Him, go to Him, pray to Him….and then He would listen to me. I had to seek Him and seek Him with my whole heart and I found HIM …. He let me find HIm and then IN AND ONLY IN HIS POWER, He set me FREE from my past… FREE from hurts,… FREE to BELIEVE Him,….FREE to TRUST Him. and FREE to GIVE Him the pain and let Him carry it for me, FREE to walk in His grace and FREE to forgive my Dad and myself.

    And it is hard …. really hard …but He wants His best for us. So please don’t give up … keep calling out to Him, keep praying … keep trusting … keep moving toward His heart and keep moving to the LIGHT.

    Praying for you dear Jesus sister and praying that God will show off for you as you seek Him with your whole heart.

    Donna B

  129. Jamie F says:

    Such beautiful words and pictures!

  130. What a powerful testimony proving that we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. Making a conscious CHOICE to accept other people, no matter what pain they have inflicted is a true sign of the power of forgiveness. I shared this story with my friends in hopes that they too can know the power that our Heavenly Father gives us. Only through the power of His Holy Spirit are we able to accomplish the many trials of this life. Because He lives in us we are able to accomplish victory and bring glory to His name. God bless you for sharing your story Donna. And thank you Renee for posting it 🙂

    • Donna B says:

      Traci,

      Thanks for the reminder that it is ALL in His power that any of us accomplish victory. And it’s through that victory that brings glory to HIM! Praising Him for all the victories won in His name this week and for how is working in the hearts of this online community.

      Thank you so much,

      Donna B

  131. Oh Donna – Thank you for your words. I cried reading it knowing, I too felt the same way – the only thing about my story is, my father died before I got to really reconcile with him.

    Fearful as I asked my dad for lunch money, knowing he’d just turn me away by telling me to ask my mother for money, I wasn’t “his problem”.

    Betrayed when my dad told me he would never walk me down the aisle when I got married.

    Abandoned and unwanted when he didn’t show up for my high school graduation, then told me I shouldn’t go to college to be a doctor.

    Unloved and unworthy for the many times he was “just there” but not emotionally there for me as a dad.

    • Donna B says:

      Song,

      Feeling your pain with you and praying for God to do His work in your heart.

      God, I thank you for Song and her courage and boldness to share her story about her Dad. God, guide and direct Song’s to find forgiveness in her heart for your Dad. Find a way to restore their relationship to each other. Fill Song with your gift of forgiveness to overflowing. Cause her to rely on you as Her Abba Father. Pave the way and fill her with your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

      Donna

  132. Wow!!! Donna, what an amazing testimony!! God is soooo very good!! And His love endures forever, and ever! Isn’t it awesome to know that we have a Daddy that loves us today, unconditionally, and will never leave nor forsake us!! Praise God!!! Thank You Abba Daddy!!!

    • Donna B says:

      Christi,

      It is amazing and awesome! Love how He loves me! And His love never ever changes! Amazing promises! And so blessed by the message that He gave Renee to share with us in A Confident Heart. It was a heart changer for me.

      Blessings,

      Donna

  133. Donna B says:

    Hey everyone,

    I just wanted to leave everyone with a big thank you, lots of love, and a prayer from my heart as we continue moving forward page by page in Renee’s book. And a GIGANTIC thank you to Renee for allowing God to use her in my healing process which began about a year ago when I first picked up A Confident Heart and still continues even as I type this. I see my healing process as a journey of daily choices – one by one choices until I reach the other side of Heaven. And I thank each of you for sharing your lifes and blessing me with your stories. And for also allowing God to use your stories to even heal my heart more this week. Please know that I will be praying for each of as you continue your journey to the heart of Jesus. Love you guys and am blessed beyond measure by each of you. <3 Donna

    God,

    I praise You and I thank You for this amazing online community that You have created specifically for Renee and her amazing friends. Your Word tells us that where two or more are gathered in Your name, You will also be there. God, thank You for showing up on Renee's blog in BIG ways this week.
    I thank You for how You are healing hearts, setting folks free from their past, releasing us from our pain and loving us in only ways that You can! I thank you for each person that visits this page. I pray God that You will continue to use it to bring Yourself honor and glory, continue to use it to change hearts for your kingdom purposes, continue to use it to draw each one closer to your heart, and to continue the work that You have started in each heart as they seek yours and as they seek to have a confident heart.
    Your Word also tells us that if we seek You with our whole hearts we will find You and that You will set us free from the captivity of our past. Thank You for this amazing promise. Thank You that your plans for us include plans to prosper us and plans not to harm us. Thank You that You are our Promise Keeper and that those promises include You as our Hope and You as our Future.

    I pray that You will go before each person as they continue turning the pages of Renee’s page. I pray that You will reveal yourself in new and fresh ways. Fill them with your courage to keep turning the pages and to keep moving toward your heart – towards the LIGHT – and out of the shadows. Meet each one at their point of need and give them the boldness to deal with the shadows that they may be living in. Please continue to move the knowledge of your grace from our heads to heart. Fill us with Your grace, mercy, wisdom, kindness, love, discernment, compassion, and self-control.

    I thank You for Renee. I praise You for the work that you have done and are doing in Renee’s heart. I praise You for how You provided Renee with this life changing message. Protect her heart. Guard her thoughts. Strengthen her. Energize her. Encourage her. Love her and let her feel that love. I thank you for how You called Renee out of the dark shadows and into the Light. I thank You for her radical obedience to the calling that You placed on her life. Protect her family. Guard her time with her family. Let the boys light shine brightly for You along their journey. Be the centerpiece to Renee’s and JJ’s marriage. Draw them closer to you and along that journey draw them closer to each other. And for Aster, I praise you and I thank You for how You have brought this little one into this family. I pray for that day that You will call into your family – into this family of Christ Followers. Continue transforming heart into a heart like yours. I thank for the progress that she has made with her medical issues and I would ask that you would continue touching her with your healing.

    “And for this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

    Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3:14-21)

    • Thank you for your amazing heart for Jesus – for us, His daughters – and for your beautiful prayer!! HE answered some of it this weekend with some much-needed down time for our family just being together. Bless you Donna for how you have poured out and into our hearts on HIS behalf!! You are loved!

  134. Meleana says:

    Thank you for this powerful heart-tugging message which went right along side with my Pastor’s message today. It is so very helpful! May God bless you as you make and teach us to make the right choices.

    • Donna B says:

      Meleana,

      Love how God works all things out for our good! So thankful and blessed that you found it helpful. Praying for you and your choices,

      Donna B.

  135. I was very touched by Donna’s story. Thank you for sharing. I hope I can break through my issues. I feel lost and a huge mess. My connection with the Lord is seriously in need. I do need prayer and not sure if I can ever measure up to what He needs me to be. I feel like a dark cloud follows me wherever I go. Please pray for a miracle. Thank you.

    Chris

    • Donna B says:

      God, I thank you for Chris and how she so boldly shared her heart and her self doubts here with the group. Asking that you would fill Chris up with yourself and with your Cause Chris to focus on the things above like yourself and not on the circumstances around her. Give her your strength in order to break through the doubts, and the issues. Cause her to find her worth in you and you alone. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

      Chris, what helped me out so much with my doubts was reading through and memorizing some of the scriptures/promises that Renee has outlined in Chapter 12. And also the remaining chapters of the book as I look to refer to them as Renee’s How To’s. And I also read through Psalms 139 quite often and focus on how God’s view’s me as fearfully and wonderfully made.

      Praying for you,

      Donna B

  136. Susan M. says:

    Thank you Donna, you have been a blessing to everyone who was touched by your testimony and took the time to write to you and express their inner feelings to you and how God has touched their lives. God’s blessings to you for your future and the plans God has made for you and the thousands of lives God will put in your future to do a good work.

    • Donna B says:

      Susan,

      Thanks so much. The prayer of my heart is that I will live my life in such a way that I honor and glorify Him in all that I say and do. Wish I could say that it always turns out that way …. but I can’t. I still have my mess ups but so thankful that He is there to cover me in His grace.

      God used Renee and her story in A Confident Heart to not only heal my heart but also draw me closer to Him….praying that God will use me for the same in the way. Love how he can take our messed up lives and turn them into His amazing message of grace and love.

      Blessings to you,

      Donna

  137. christine lowe says:

    It may be a holiday but it’s slso Monday and I was ready for the next chapter. Thank you for chapter 6. This is a place of joy for me. I got so bogged down in 4&5. Lots of feelings that were hard for me to let go even though I was desperate to dump them. After journaling and praying I went to bed and woke up to chapter 6. It was exactly what I was ready to hear. The AM/FM thoughts spoke directly to me. Also “start every dayrelying onGod’s power and living in the security of His promises. And remember, it won’t just happen because it’s possible; youhave to take action”.

    God is just a right thought away.

    • Donna B says:

      Christine,

      YAY God!!! Keep turning those pages!!! More healing can be found in Chapters 6 thru 11 and more of His promises are found in Chapter 12. Not only is HE our FUTURE and HOPE, HE is our JOY!!!

      Blessings,

      Donna B

    • Love how HE’s speaking to you — and that you started Chapter 6!! These next chapters are so life applicable as we walk through God’s promises and the application of them i our lives!! So glad you are with us Christine!!

  138. All I can say is thanks for your testimony. I live like that everyday, making me to be mean to my husband, mistreating him and taking him from granted. Your testimony and preaching from my pastor thisnweek have convicted me and made me start look at my self and make the choice to let go all the hurt he may have cause me in the pass and accept that only God can change him and me. Thanks for those word. Now nknowing that God Love me so much that he dead just for me thanks for the reminder of that. That means I am want, I am love, And I can do all things through Christ who strenght me. Thanks my God continue to use you for his Glory……

    • Donna B says:

      Shawn,

      Thank you so much for your honesty and for sharing your story with us. Praying for God to fill you with His peace and grace to overflowing and that you will become an extender of that same grace to your husband. Praying God gives you his eyes to see your husband with and His heart to love your husband with as well. Praying for God to direct your choices and that in those choices you will honor and glorify God.

      Praying for you,

      Donna B

  139. Faith Doud says:

    thank you Donna for your great words.. I saw the LIGHT in reading your message.. I NEED to accept my worry issue as being OK and not my power for placing it on my worry list but the power of God in giving it to HIM! Thank you Jesus for you LIGHT!!

    • Donna B says:

      Yay God and Yay Faith! So blessed by your sharing. Praising Him for allowing you to see the LIGHT! Keep walking to the LIGHT!

      Praying for you,

      Donna

  140. Betty Harrison says:

    I am 88 and lie in Hopewell, VA. In my spare time I love to READ!

  141. Carolyn says:

    All I can really say is thank you for sharing your testimony. I myself am currently deep into much the same issue and seeking Jesus to guide me out of it. I grew up in a family much the same with an alcoholic father who abused my mother my whole life. October 17, 2011 she lost her life at his hands. Dealing with alot of pain, worry, self worth issues over it all. But I do know and trust that my TRUE FATHER God himself will lead me out.

    • Donna B says:

      God,

      Open the eyes of my heart and give me your understanding as I come to you and pray for Carolyn and the hurt that she is going through. Guide my words to your heart as I pray for Carolyn. Fill me with your words.

      Fill Carolyn with your peace, your love, your forgiveness, your mercy, your compasssion, your grace, your promises, your confidence, your understanding, your spirit. Walk alongside of Carolyn as she processes her pain. Show Carolyn how to process that pain and leave it at the foot of the cross. Go before her, seal her heart with your love. Take her hand. Keep her in step with your steps. Guide her out of her pain. Help her process her pain. Replace that pain with your promises. Cause Carolyn to lean into you and into your love. Flood her with your spirit. Lift her eyes to you and cause her to seek you with all that she is. Strengthen her. Encourage her. Surround her. Fill her with your presence. Fill Carolyn to overflowing.

      In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

  142. Wow! Just, wow! You have such an amazing testimony. And I am going to repeat Melissa and tell you that you need to be speaking. Woman need to hear your story and know there is hope and freedom.

    Speak it, girl!!!

  143. Michelle says:

    I have always been one to do things myself. My dad got sick of changing my oil in my car so he taught me how to change my own. He took us shooting , I went hunting with him. We weren’t allowed to cry. My grandma was a single mom and was strong and did things on her own. She took care of and maintained her own home until age and Alzheimer’s took that independence away. My mom also divorced had to work support me and my siblings. So my role models in life were all teaching me to rely on myself and be tough. For many months before I began this study I have had tears welling up behind my eyes but I don’t cry. My heart has been broken for a long time and I have felt weak. Like I can’t handle the hurt and heartbreaks and the never feeling like I am enough. Constantly worrying about what others think of me. But what a weight lifted that it is not up to my strength. It is in His strength that I am made strong. I don’t have to do it alone. He doesn’t want me to nor did he ever mean for me to. But also what a hard thing to let go. I am trying to give him control. It is a process, right? A journey. Everyday giving my life over to him. My frustrations, my doubts, my control, my weaknesses, my self worth. All to Him.
    I pray He help me with this. I want to be free. I want to be a light for Him. I want to live for an audience of One.
    Thank you so much for this study. Thank you for Donna’s story.
    I pray that every woman participating in this study. That we all may find our confidence in Him.
    God Bless each one of you!

  144. I also have a father that has abandoned me but I think that it has always brought me closer to my father God as I have felt his presence in my life and his constant companionship. He never leaves me and always listens to me. I have the best Father!!!

  145. Donna you have an amazing testimony and I can relate very well to the father you described. I have many of those memories myself, but have chosen to see my past differently since coming to know Christ. Being filled with so many uplifting stories like yours has helped me so much to see that I am not alone. I praise God for giving me eyes to see now, what I couldn’t see before. Thank you for sharing this with us today.

  146. What really struck me from the book so far is that it’s time for me to let go of the fantasy of the way I want my life to be and enjoy the reality. It’s time to stop expecting people, places, and things to make me happy and it’s time to rely on the Lord for joy. It’s time to let go of what I will never have and accept what I do have!

  147. I don’t know if anyone’s heard of this, but there is a book called, “My One Word,” and the idea is that you pray for God to give you one word that sort of sums up what He would like for you to focus on for the year. My word is, “acceptance.” Everything that you said in your testimony spoke loud and clear to me, Donna. I also have a father who is an addict. When I was a kid, he made me so many promises and although he probably wanted to, he just wasn’t able to keep any of them. I have asthma, and when I was little, it was so bad that I was usually home from school so that I could have round the clock breathing treatments. I remember one time when I was like 6 years old, sick, and home from school; my mom trusted my dad to take care of me while she ran some errands. As soon as she left, my dad asked me if I was hungry. He told me that he was going to get me something to eat and that he would be right back. He left me there for hours by myself and without a treatment. I can remember watching show after show and making up reasons in my head for why it was taking him so long to get back. Other times, he would use me as a ploy to leave the house without my mom thinking that he was going to go hook up with drugs, so he would tell me that we were going somewhere and then we would end up in front of apartments and he would tell me that he would be right back…and leave me in the car for hours because he forgot about me. He also would do things when he was high that he thought were fun, but were fun only for him…like trying to see if he could climb trees with the 4 wheeler…even as I begged and screamed for him to please not try because it looked scary..and then he would say he wouldn’t and then last minute try….and then, of course, we would not make it and crash….okay, so that only happened the one time, lol….ahhh….I had no intention on writing all of that out, but once I got going I needed to continue. The worst part about all of it though, was that he was a really good dad when he could be…and so I was always so confused as a child…and still am as an adult. He is in prison now and I am so bent on not holding ill feelings towards him at all, that I try to not think about any of those things. I know that they have impacted me in soooo many negative ways, but I try to focus on the positive things that his mistakes taught me and the positive things that he added to my life; like praying before bed every night. My dad taught me “the Lord’s prayer” when I was itty bitty and would pray it with me every night (when he was there.) I cannot remember a single night of my life where I didn’t fall asleep praying because of his teaching me the importance of bedtime prayer. Even when I did my prodigal daughter thing and turned away; drunk as a skunk or high as a kite, I would pray and cry to God before I went to sleep each night. Anyway, accepting things and choosing to believe that my heavenly Father DOES love me and is who He says He is…and will come back and not just leave me here….and can be trusted….these are the things that make the difference between bitterness and peace, hatred and love, despair and hope!

  148. Charlotte says:

    Thank you for this insightful article. I shared a childhood much like yours but my mother was the angry and abusive one. I sense that you have done a lot of work on healing your past as I have myself. I would love to read your book.

  149. Thank you for sharing that. I just finished Suzie Eller’s “Unburdened Heart” study and doing your study now is really helping me to continue on with what I’ve learned about forgiveness and accepting myself by who I am NOW; not what my past was. I wonder why so many of us blame ourselves for things we have had no control over. I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one and I pray that myself and all others who do will find the strength to give that burden to the Lord so we can start living our lives with the clean slate we deserve.

  150. carolyn rivers says:

    Donna story hit close home and made me cry. I can relate. It is so hard to acknowledge that I have those feelings and also refreshing because now I can turn the pain to gain. Its always nice to know that I am not alone too.

  151. The last two chapters have been very difficult for me. My past has held me for many years. I have lived with shame and bitterness and unforgiveness for a very long time. In Chapter 5 I highlighted the following: “When we focus the attention on ourselves, we turn our attention away from God.” It has been very recently that I have become aware of just how much my past influences my present…how much I hate myself because of what was done to me and how much I hate certain others simply because they are men (even if they did nothing wrong). Knowing this displeased God just made me hate myself even more. It has become a vicious circle in my life and not one I’m sure I know how to break out of. Sunday after hearing our pastor’s sermon, I came home and cried. I know that this is not where God wants me–stuck in hatred, bitterness and unforgiveness. But the thought of praying for those who hurt me is still so foreign. After reading today’s story, I am thinking that is exactly what I need to do though. This is where it is tempting to quit. To put the book on the shelf and say “I’m done with this.” Not this time though, if at all possible. I want/need to finish this. Maybe God can use what I went through. I don’t see how at this point but maybe.

  152. Accept is such an awesome realization; I accept that God breathed life into me, He knew me before he placed me into my mother’s womb, He knows exactly what I am doing and what I will do and no matter what He will never leave me nor foresake me. He LOVES me unconditionally. Now, I MUST accept this FACT and choose to LOVE myself, LOVE the LORD and move forward to become the WOMEN of FAITH He made me to be. Thank you for reminding me with your words.

  153. Thank you for sharing your story, Donna. I identified with some pieces of your story. I too had a time where I had to make a choice to forgive my father….little did I know he would end his life just a year after I made that decision. It is SO important to heed the direction God is giving to us in our life….even in what seems so unimportant at the moment. I thought I had years and the last thing I wanted was to deal with my past just 2 weeks before my 2nd daughter was born. God knew best and thankfully, amidst so many emotions and heartbreak, I was not dealing with guilt.

  154. Donna – thank you, for sharing your story. As I was reading your story, it brought back so many feelings that I had as growing up and as an adult. I was also in a place where it was very hard to forgive my father – you cannot ever forget – because that is some of the history that molded you.
    There came a visit with a pastor that helped me several years back, andhe told me one day that I needed to ask the Lord to forgive my father and forgive him myself – but, that didn’t mean that I had to have a relationship with him. I will never forget that when I came to a place to do this, I felt like I had lost a ton that was being carried around with me. As I stated, you cannot forget and even today, there are times that I question why things had to be the way they were – and when I look around at my family today and all the blessing the Lord, has given me – I can see that it is because of that past that I rely on Him for the strength that is needed.
    Again, thank you for sharing your story and trust me you will be blessed. As well as Renee Swope.
    Love in Christ!!!

  155. Marcella R says:

    Oh my gosh, you just told my story. I did get the chance to speak to my Dad. We never had a relationship, though. His choice. He had a massive stroke and lost his memory of us except for when we were little. So he never knew who we were when we went to visit. I never got the freedom you received. I still am feeling,fearful, abandoned, unworthy, unlovable to this day. Trying to learn to get my worth from God. Hoping this study will help put that in me. Thanks for posting.

  156. Janet Worthy says:

    WOW! I am without words. Thank you, Donna!

  157. I love love love this story. i believe we should all think about and live out the two words the Lord gave Donna, CHOICE AND ACCEPT. Those two words pretty much sums up that we all need to CHOOSE GOD. He is the only one who will be able to make your strong and be with you at all times. God will never disappoint you as long as you are fully committed to Him and do His will. He will never let you down. Thanks fo rthis message. it has really lifted me today.

  158. Donna’s story, Pat’s, Becky’s etc. We all have a story, satan is behind our past stories…We have a hope for the future! LADIES, none of us are not here by happenstance, this is a devine appointment….GOD WANTS TO PUT ALL THIS BEHIND US SO WE CAN LIVE A VICTORIOUS LIFE FOR HIM…We do have to believe His promises and it is a battle EVERY DAY to work at overcoming our Fearful. Betrayed. Abandoned. Unloved. Unworthy. Unwanted feelings. I am 51 and am still working on overcoming all of these lables, but these are NOT God’s lables for us, these are LIES of satan to keep us from living a victorious life in Christ. Donna’s story, Renee’s book & God’s Holy Word is all steps to healing what satan has come to rob, steal and destroy. Thank you ladies for being vessels for God to heal us and help us be HIS MASTERPIECES that He created us to be.
    Love and Prayers to you all…

  159. Thank you Donna for your story! I have no memory of my Dad when he was sober. He drank all the time and was abusive emotionaly. He threw things etc etc etc! I did keep in touch with him through phone calls for about a year before he died. Maybe I didn’t honor him the way God wanted me to. I don’t know. I know God will forgive me that has to be enough. Please pray for me. It was hard to get over that part of my childhood. I have a wonderful family of my own now! So very thankful for them! Love to you all!

  160. God bless you Donna for sharing your story. God is so faithful…to each one of us if we will let Him be. We must remember every day, ” we are a chosen woman, a royal priest, a holy daughter, a woman belonging to God”, as Renee writes. Turning to His light every day, and not looking at our weaknesses are key to believing these truths about ourselves. His Promises are true, His Word is life.
    May you all be blessed today!

  161. Demetria says:

    Thanks Donna for sharing such an inspiring story. It really touched my heart and although I have not had the same expereinces, it still inspired me.

  162. Katherine says:

    I, thank God I did not grow up with an abusive, addictive father, but your story was very touching and it takes a huge faith and a loving God to motivate a person to forgive someone that is that abusive. My granddaughter’s father was an addict. When her mother finally divorced him he just walked out of her life and made her a very angry girl growing up. She is now 32 and has 3 children of her own, but even today I still see the scares he left on her. I am going to print off your story and give it to her to read. Maybe one day with the help of God there will be healing in her life to.
    Thank you for the testimony. May God bless you always.

  163. thank you Donna. Acceptance is SO difficult!! But such a relief, such a release from darkness. I find I am so impatient with my self and unwilling to put in the long, hard steps because it does not happen overnight. I always seem to want the quick fix, but I’m learning that is darkness & emptiness too. Looking forward to ” lighter” days—this is MY hope!!

  164. Thanks for sharing your story. God is good…I like when you said you had to accept and make a choice . I think that is key accept we can’t change people or the situation not even the past, but with that being said we can make a choice to trust the Lord and His promises. Some days are harder then others but it’s our choice on whether we are gonna trust God. I have gotten to the point where I have come to realize that I can’t blame other people for my choices because it is my choice.

  165. Absolutely Amazing !!! Everything is ultimately OUR choice. We can trust God and follow or NOT !!

  166. Thank you for praying for me. What a blessing. I am struck by what you said about “choice.”
    Moment by moment I must choose what I think or allow into my thoughts and flush what does not agree with what God says. My heart is touched by the thought that I’ve spent so much time thinking about what I think and what others think and so little by what God thinks about everything. It is my hearts desire to learn to only focus on His thoughts and desires. I desire to make Him my complete and only hearts desire.

  167. Jer29:11 Hope…. For I know the plans I have for you declares The Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you HOPE and a future!!!! God Bless you Donna!

  168. I too had to come to love my Abba, Father and cast all my cares on Him. The statement that tugged at my heart was “doing the hard thing to believing Him when my emotions are demanding their way”. To cling to His promises when my feeling tell me otherwise is a minute by minute choice. Thank you all for your comments. You are encouraging me everyday.

  169. Linda S. Aranda says:

    I loved reading your testimony Donna. Everything you said was my testimony accept the part where your Dad was intoxicated. Thank you for sharing because I have also had to make choices and was fortunate enough to speak to my father before he died. So I knew I had to make choices but also have to deal with things I never knew was there. You opened my eyes to a few plus this Bible Study has helped me build confidence in who I am in Jesus and that God is my Father. Thank you so much. Thank God you made the right choices so you could share them.

  170. Some things the Lord has been telling me this week. I know how Gideon felt, I feel that way often. I am the least qualified person for the job. But then the Lord answers me and says, it’s not you, it’s Me. I sent you into this, and I am with you. In my weakness, His strength is glorified. If I had enough strength to do things on my own, I would asume that I accomplish things on my own. I need to give God all the glory, I can do nothing in my own strength.

    I may not be qualified, but, the Lord qualifies me. He is bringing me to high places, so that His righteousness may be seen. He is taking me to the top of the mountain, so I can scream for all to hear, Glory to God!

  171. Thanks for the reminder. We need to make the choice ove and over

  172. Jearllene (Jeri) Tanner says:

    I so identify with Donna. I had a father who never was there for me or my brother. Our mom was not any better. We pretty much grew up under the guidance of our Mother’s adopted mother. We thank God for her and her wonderful love and leading us to believe in Jesus. Our Mother and Father both were married and divorced four times. I will give Mother credit, she let her husbands know if you touch my daughter in any way we are done. My mother disappeared in 1962 and we never saw her again. Our father abused us and let his wives abuse us. We never had a happy home life but in 1978 I gave my heart to the Lord and I love him so much and glad that He is an important part of my life. He put a wonderful Christian man in my life whom I have been married to for 50 years. I have had a blessed adult life and I give all the glory to the Lord.

  173. Donna your words touched my heart and reminded me of a similar experience years ago. My words were. Different yet the response was the same. Rejected…when I was the cause of a rift between my teenage mother and her father….not the much-anticipated first grandchild….rejected….when I was born a girl…rather than the boy who could carry the family name and oneday take over the farm….rejected…when even though I tried hard to fill the wrong-shaped mold to please my dad (a tomboy isn’t truly what a dad want) Daddy’s little princess was born….rejected…when four years later, the crown prince was born…the toy tractors and baseball glove became his……STILL…..I worked harder….tried harder…..gave it my all.
    Unworthy….When as Daddy’s little princess twirled and danced, glowing under the wanted attention. Of her doting father, the chubby, grimey tomboy (called “Skinny mini ” by the critical King she longed to please. Unworthy…When suddenly, after 12 years of running with the boys as a tomboy, the King proclaimed that “young ladies don’t behave like that.
    FAST FORWARD 26 YEARS:
    The chubby noboby has grown up. It’s. A chance at the happily ever after she didn’t find with her daddy.
    Rejected…the bride spends her honeymoon crying herself to sleep while her prince charming looks at anyone but her…the waitress who takes our order…the scantily clad women in the pool…even the 15 year old girls at the mall…Unwanted….the prince finally falls into bed, s boring within 30 seconds…..Unworthy…no amount of bubblebath…perfume…nice clothes…nothing…can draw the prince’s attention away from the paper doll pinups or the naemkd Tv stars

    • That would be naked Tv stars.
      Fat, ugly, unwanted from conception on, rejected, unworthy,

      God brought me through the first part years ago. I was so filled with bitterness and hatred for my dad. I could barely stand to be around him. I didn’t. Want him anywhere. Near my little girl. Depression from a really bad counseling situation was spiraling me downward. God came in and gave me a vision of my angry, unsaved dad.

      BROKEN….the only word that could sum up the vision I saw. Under the anger…under the perverse destructive humor….was a broken man longing to be loved…to have someone be proud of him…to be worth dying for. At that moment I sensed God asking me to love to pray for..to be Jesus to the jerk who was my father. I couldn

  174. I know I am late, but I wanted to share the item I’m trying to accept. To help make it more real. I’m going to accept the rejection of my foster/adopted daughter. It is such a deep hurt and it has been many years, but I know God wants me to be healed. Thanks for this study. <3

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