Finding Spiritual Whitespace {guest post & book giveaway}

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Do you ever wish you could just slow down and discover who you’d be if your life wasn’t filled with so much rush? 

The other day my friend told me she felt lost: lost in the hurry of carpool and kids, deadlines and dirty laundry… and she was tired, and I shared with her some things I’ve been learning through my friend Bonne Gray’s beautiful book Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul to Rest.

In, Bonnie shares how “underneath all of the stress and expectations we put on ourselves, and the ones that others put on us, our souls long for space to breathe.” Bonnie calls it “soul rest: a place where we can rest, not in what we could be or what we should be, but just as we are. Jesus invites us to come to Him when we’re struggling and carrying heavy loads, so He can give us rest.”

bonnie-grayToday I’ve invited, Bonnie to share a peek into her heart and inside the pages of her beautiful book, Finding Spiritual Whitespace.

“I once felt lost and tired.

Even though no one could tell.  By looking at my life from the outside.

But, deep inside, in my secret heart of hearts, I’ve always wanted something I could never quite keep a hold of — not long enough to make it my everyday home.  For my soul and for the me that wanted to be free.

I’ve always wanted to know who I really could be — if I was free to rest.

Do you ever wish life could be different? That somehow you could just rest?

Underneath all the stress, the expectations we put on ourselves and the ones others put on us, we all long for space.

Space to breathe.

Space to just be me.

Where we can be real.

To take care of our hearts, with the grace and kindness we often pour out to others.

LongToBreathe_SpiritualWhitespace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


We don’t want to be numb anymore.

Just doing.  Coping.  Surviving.

All the while, there is a part of us that longs to come alive.

The part of us who longs for beauty, even though the daily road feels rough.  Or even broken.

The part of us who remembers what it’s like to have desires is hungering for quiet. For rest.

Who wants to feel more intimately connected with God.

To our dreams.

To our stories.

To who we really are deep inside.

Who doesn’t want to hide.

Who longs to be known.

With others.

A Deeper Part

There’s a deeper part of us who longs to uncover the stories we’re living in our everyday lives — hidden — so that they can be shared.

We don’t want to journey alone.

We don’t have to.

What we all long for is deeper rest.

Refreshment.

Comfort.

Real conversation.

Encouragement.

Peace.

Beauty.

As is.

What we all long for is soul rest.

Soul rest is a kind of rest we can savor — not as we should be. Nor as we ought to be.

We can enjoy rest for our souls — as we are.

This ache for soul rest is something Jesus longs to touch.

It is an ache that Jesus himself must have also felt as He journeyed in-the-the-skin through the realities of daily life.

Jesus invites us to experience this rest — by offering us an invitation.

If we dare to take the journey.

“Are you tired? Worn out?

Come to me, all you who are struggling hard and carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest.

For I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”

Jesus’s invitation, Matthew 11:28-30

Will you dare to rest? Will you d
are to be real?

To whisper —

I am tired.

But, I still carry dreams. Desires. A story.

I want to be happy.

I miss the quiet.

I want to feel.

I want to let go of who I’ve been — so I can discover who I can be — when I take the time to rest.

I want to be present.

I want to love. And be loved.

You'reWorthIt_SpiritualWhitespace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus invites us on a new journey.

To pause.

To draw close.

To come into an intimate special space.

The rest we all long for really can be found.

Dare to take a new journey.

Create space in your life.

Feed your soul.

So you can care for what’s tender.

Because behind your most tired moments lie the deepest parts of who God made you — longing to be known and restored.

You’re loved.

You’re cherished.

You’re worth it.

The real you.

If you dared to rest — to uncover the real you God made — what would you want more of? What would you want less of? What can feed your soul today?”

FindingWhitespace_alt3DHow many of us find ourselves running on empty with no time for rest, no time for ourselves, and no time for God?  Bonnie Gray knows what that’s like. On the brink of fulfilling a lifelong dream, she saw her plans shatter into a journey through painful memories and anxiety. In her search for answers, she made an important discovery: we all need spiritual whitespace

Infused with biblical encouragement and thought-provoking prompts, Finding Spiritual Whitespace shows us how to create space in the everyday for God, refreshment, and faithright in the midst of our stress-frayed lives. And it couldn’t have come at a more perfect time in my life personally. I’ve loved reading this book {more than once}, and I know you will too!
Order a copy here.

Enter to WIN:
What is one way you could carve out time for whitespace and rest this summer? Let’s take time this summer to let our souls be breathe. Click “share your thoughts” and leave a comment under this blog post to enter. Two winners will be selected and announced next week. {if you are reading this via email, please click here to participate in the giveaway on my blog!}

 

Bonnie-familyBonnie Gray is contributor at Crosswalk.com, Relevant Magazine, and DaySpring (in)courage. A UCLA graduate, Bonnie has been missionary, ministry entrepreneur and Silicon Valley high-tech professional. Bonnie blogs at FaithBarista.com in Northern California with her husband Eric and their two sons.

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. Wow, this so resonates with me and how I have been feeling.

  2. I get up early before all the family starts to stir. Even still, my soul resonates with this. Quiet, peace, space to feel. Yes, please!

  3. Donna Spitzer says:

    I feel frozen inside myself. Having just lost my husband of 43yrs Jimmy, on April 4th, I feel I’m stuck in a mire of lost’ness…I know it sound crazy, But I’m questioning my salvation, my life, my whole existence…
    I knew Jimmy wasn’t going to pull through this time, he had just been in ICU 3 weeks earlier, his body was so worn out, so weak…So, I said Lord, if it’s not your will to heal his body here on earth, Then please take him home…I said it, I meant it…But now I question, did I give in to soon, did I give up to soon? I feel so lost without my husband, my best friend, the man I literally grew up with. I thought I would be at peace with his passing, Knowing NOW he isn’t suffering anymore…But I’m not. I’m hurt, I’m angry, I’m miserable And I can’t feel comfort from the Lord…I think my heart has dried up….All I do is cry…I have 2 teens to finish raising alone, No life insurance money, his med bills & nursing home bills took all of his pension & social security. Now all of that’s been cut by more than half. I pray for peace, for comfort, understanding…But all I hear is my own crying…

    • Oh Donna, I am so so sorry. My heart aches for you sweet friend. Though we have never met, we are sisters in Christ and family at heart. I’m asking Jesus to give me some promise of comfort, strength and hope from His word to pray for you today. And I’ll post them here later today.

      For now know this: what you are feeling is absolutely normal. You have lost the love of your life; your best friend; your soul mate. Your heart is in deep grief and it’s okay. I know it’s scary and you fear it will never end but you will be able to breathe again, and hope again, and live again. Your heart is crushed and needs time to grieve your indescribable loss. Please know I am praying for you today.

  4. Susan G says:

    Almost every woman (and man) needs to find that ‘rest’. Can’t wait to read Bonnie’s book and pass it on to every family member and friend who also needs to ‘rest’.
    Thanks Renee!
    Bless you and Bonnie!

  5. Lysbeth Chamblee says:

    Even Jesus needed time to be alone and time to rest. Why should we be any different?

  6. A solitude retreat

  7. Jalisa Ray says:

    This is such a perfect timing. As I sit here in tears of frustration and overwhelm wanting to get away from it all I decided to check my email and I come across this post. I have come undone too many times these past few weeks…. I need to experience that whitespace… In order to carve out time for it this summer I need to make it a priority….

  8. Christi says:

    I have been trying to figure out how to accomplish this in hopes of getting closer to God. I’ve been thinking about fasting, meditating and praying for a couple of days next week.

  9. Barbara Hill says:

    I have a longing. For a deep intimate relationship with Jesus. If we don’t meet Jesus in the secret place in our heart, we can’t have that deep relationship. It seems that may todsy want to have only a superficial relationship with Jesus. My prayer is that we will open that secret place to the LORD so He can meet us there.

  10. Barbara Hill says:

    S

  11. Darlene P says:

    I think this would be a great read and gift for someone, especially moms. Sometime we just get so busy with day to day things caring for everyone and doing everything we forget that we need to rest. Even when trying to rest sometimes our minds just go back to what needs to be done next and we never fully rest.

  12. Paige E says:

    I’m trying to figure this out some this summer. I. Am. Tired. I don’t want to just survive, driving 80 mph to the daycare to get the kids and take them to apts or swim lessons, or dinner… squeezing in my poor husband after bedtime and realizing I wouldn’t know what my own interests were if someone asked. Where do I feel connected to God, where I can be fully present and enjoy His work? Nature is a place I’ve always loved to go and rest and feel closer to God. To feel smaller, yet somehow a part of all of this that he loved so much that he sent Jesus to die for. One thing I’ve planned so far (yes, I’m saying so far! There must be more!) is a hike with my husband. The kids are still a little too small to keep up or enjoy, so instead of forcing a family affair, I think we will just go find a path in the Virginia mountains and hike. Enjoy God’s beauty. Breathe fresh air and a lack of phone service. That’s my planned whitespace.

    • Praying for you Paige. This season of motherhood is stretching as best, exhausting at worst. Praying for little pockets of soul-care time for you; and heart to heart time for you and your hubs. A hike sounds wonderful to me!

  13. Kathy S says:

    This blog post speaks to my soul. I will hang on to it and read it daily. I’ve tried several different ideas on how to achieve this, but the truth is that what I need is something I can’t achieve on my own. I have been seeking ways to have more time for prayer and to keep on top of all of my responsibility in life. I’m starting to think that I need to let God into more areas of my life.

  14. Julie Lemons says:

    2014 I was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, soon followed Antiphospholipid Antibody syndrome and then this June sjogren’s. All three are autoimmune diseases. Lupus is usually triggered when the body is under stress!! The other two are overlapping diseases are are often seen in Lupus patients. I’m that person this book speaks of. Not a day goes by without stress. Stress over my health, Stress over my Husbands health, the demands of my children, my home. I am that Mother, my rest comes when my body crashes from the Lupus and I can’t go anymore. I then sleep for hours because that’s all I can do, just to recover to start it all over again.

  15. Polly Schneider says:

    I think I need to get up earlier to have more time in the morning to just sit and spend time with the LORD. I try to spend a least some time each morning, but I really desire to spend more.
    We always go camping which is a nice time of relaxing and just slowing down a lot. Thanks for this giveaway.

  16. Debi Schuhow says:

    I have this book, and have bought several to give away so I don’t need to win one. I wanted to share that this is an EXCELLENT book, one that I read to soothe me over and over again. Bonnie has a wonderful writing voice and I really can hear Jesus speaking his tender love over me.
    If you have PTSD, depression, anxiety, or been abused in any way this book can facilitate your walk with Our Tender Savior-Jesus.
    God Bless.

    • Thank you for sharing your heart about the book Debi. I”m reading it again now and loving it just as much as the first time!

  17. Anastasia Corbin says:

    I need to look at my weeks and actually pencil in white space in my afternoons. I also need to take more time in my mornings before everyone is up for the day.

  18. I need to stay focused on His beautiful face and not the ugliness going on in the world!

  19. Melinda says:

    Sitting on my sun porch at 5:00 am works best for me!

  20. Deborah says:

    I would love to find Whitespace! It is much needed. I believe I should quit my second job and between growing more intimate with Jesus that I could possibly volunteer where I can make a difference in someone’s life. This sounds like an excellent book and I can’t wait to jump right in! God Bless!

  21. Debbie Parsons says:

    This sounds like everyone I know! Sounds like a great book–Can’t wait to read it!

  22. Michelle says:

    I will write down the verses from Matthew 11:28-30 and try to remember to go to Jesus for my rest. This post was just what I needed to hear. I am so tired! Thank you!

  23. Lying in my hammock would be the perfect place.

  24. patricia woodson says:

    I’m putting away my computer on Sundays starting the 5th and spending time reading all the christian books I have amassed and “mean to read.” Then I’m going to meditate on those thoughts and His glory as I spend time in my garden.

  25. Brenda Jordan says:

    I will turn off the phone, put aside the electronic devices, and escape to the porch . There I can swing and enjoy God’s nature as I spend time with Him.

    • I”ve done that recently. A social media and internet-free weekend and it was amazingly refreshing. Unplugging this weekend to, to just savor some soul rest. 🙂

  26. Debbie Walker says:

    I’m turning 62 next month. Retired 1 1/2 years ago from a very busy, time robbing, time demanding, family time robbing job. I gave up any free time for myself for 25 yrs at this job, because I felt I had to devote that time to family. I felt guilty for the time I didn’t spend with them, so any free time was theirs. Now what that caused was making my family feel I’m at their beckon call. They call and want my help with one thing after another. I felt they needed me, but actually all I am is a servant. now in retirement, I feel I have no purpose but to serve everyone else’s needs and desires. I feel my life doesn’t matter. I’ve asked God – was this my purpose for being here? The book sounds wonderful and wish it was a few years earlier, maybe I could have found some white space. I’ve lost years of white space and the one thing you can’t get back is time

  27. This sounds like a wonderful book. It’s hard to just find that time to spend with God but its so necessary!

  28. I love to sit on my porch swing, which faces a pasture, and just take in God’s beauty and wildlife. It reminds me to stop and…

  29. Michele S says:

    In content creation and page layout, white space allows the beauty of the word, image, page to stand out. I love how this can also be a metaphor for life as it helps me to see that for us to live our most beautiful lives we too need that whitespace. How can we see the beauty that God pours into our life without a clutter free space, and time to just be with Him, in His Word? This summer is the first time in many years that I do not have a paying “job” to pull me outside our home. And for the first time ever I’m not freaked out about that. My white space is right now – this break to grieve the passing of our mother, our family;s move and change to a new community to care for and be with our dad, the transition of our now adult children to married life and / or university, work. It is a time to reflect and give Praise to God. I appreciate the timeliness of this reflection on whitespace – thank you!

  30. I love to try to slow down enough to look through the eyes of the little children ( not always easy with 2 babies and four others under 4 years old). It is amazing all the great things God has given us, but we are so busy we miss the beauty.

  31. Not sure where to find rest, but it is something I am desperately in need of. This sounds like it would be a good read.

  32. Julie B says:

    I need to spend more time with my husband ( movies, walk). Also just some me time reading or enjoying something I like to do. Love to win a copy of the book. Thanks for the chance.

  33. Suzanne Wurster says:

    I think I can find whitespace by redefining the items I put in my day each day. This would allow me to spend more time with God!!! I would love to win!

  34. Paula McRee says:

    I thought I was the only one…..

  35. Divagal30 says:

    Having just gone through a divorce I try to not have time to think or what to do with the rest of my life. Time to really breathe

  36. I cannot wait to read this book! I have been struggling with finding this kind of space and need so often to “be still.” Than you fir writing this!

  37. Pam Moody says:

    Wouldove this book my spirits has been not what they should be and my faith is feeling.

  38. Anita smith says:

    I am 41 years old.I have 7 girls been married 23 years this August have 2 grand babies and one on the way. I do not know what it is to slow down lol seems like when I try the more I find needs done would love to get this book and here some insight on how to slow down and take time for more important things.

  39. Sammie Warwick says:

    I thought when my children grew up and moved out that I would have so much time on my hands, even working full-time. Unfortunately, I filled all that time with other useless things. I could get up early to have my quiet time instead of waiting until evening, when something always comes up. I can also cut out internet time. I can do it! Thanks for giving me that push I needed. I can’t wait for the book.

  40. Tammy C says:

    So needed to hear this. Exhausted from serving others and have lost myself and dreams I once had in the process. Not sure at 41 who I am. Spending more time in his word and looking to Him for rest and fearless living.

  41. Wow this really hits home, I run at a crazy pace both at work and in my personal life. And I crave the rest that is promised in God’s Word, but struggle on how to acheive this in my life. Definately a subject that needs addressed and is very applicable today

  42. I love to get up early in the summer before my children bring the grands, my husband rises or either my mother or mother-in-law rise to spend time in the Word.

  43. April Anstey says:

    I’m gonna try and get up before my kiddos rise and shine for the day, so I can spend that quiet time in the Word.

  44. I was intrigued by the title of your book, because I’d never thought of spiritual and whitespace as going together! I think this book would be perfect to give to my daughter whose double golden birthday is in 12 days! Please choose me to win a copy for her on this special day in her life. Thanks for the peek into an intriguing book!

  45. Rosario says:

    Coping. Surviving. The need not to rush. The desire for soul rest. I identified with this and more as I read. The words ‘Spiritual Whitespace’ in the title stirred my Spirit. It gave me hope that this book is an excellent tool to find the stillness I’ve been praying for. God you are faithful to answer.

  46. This describes how I’m feeling–numb, disconnected from myself, longing to know God’s dream for my life, but feeling like I don’t have a clear direction. I know I need to connect more with God. This summer, I’ve been faithful to read my devotions and Bible study but I am doing that amidst the chaos of the rest of my family. I need to carve out time by myself to pause and be quiet and hopefully find that white space mentioned! I’d love to win a copy of the book. I think it would help me reconnect with God and with myself.

  47. One way I could find time to rest is to get lost in a book this summer. : )

  48. Susie Johnson says:

    I would love to have this book. I feel like I never stop. I am my Dad’s caregivers. It is the best job I could ever ask for, but I really need to take time and rest. I need to learn to do that!

  49. Kim Heilwagen says:

    I need to change my morning routine to meet with God. This is so hard for me.

  50. Brenda Schiesser says:

    I am committed to spend more time in Bible study this summer and beyond. I am in a P31 study right now and on Tues nights at church.

  51. Rest…peace…We all need this, and I am eager to read this book!

  52. With college and post college sons home this Summer, working long hours and opposite schedules and sharing cars, life feels a bit chaotic. My morning time with the Lord makes all the difference with how my day goes and my perspective on it!

  53. Carolyn Rivera says:

    This sounds like a perfect on time book, the Lord always directs me to the book in the season I’m in right now… I find myself struggling more to find this place of resting in Him. With a full house of guys, (two teenagers and a husband and a dog that demands a lot of attention.. Kinda like a baby.) I need the rest that He can only give… Spiritual rest!

  54. Theresa says:

    i want what you described. I.Am.Tired. I’m not sure how to make that white space happen. I’m praying.

  55. My 22 year old daughter just told yesterday she was trying to find a bible study she and I could do, separately but the same study. She is an ER RN working 12 hour shifts and I am a full time Secretary. I had just recently t told her we both need to make more time to spend resting with God. Although this is not a bible study it sounds like something I could use. I am trying to find more time every evening just to sit outside and listen to the birds, resting. Would love a copy of your book.

  56. I want to make sure that I don’t put too much pressure on myself in regards to my to-do list. It’s ok if I don’t get everything done on that list and it is also ok to relax!!

  57. As a mother of 3 plus all those under my wings in our family ministry at church I help oversee I feel like I’m forever being pulled, pushed, listening, heart breaking for my students or plain busy with life!! Love reading this excerpt & looking forward to the rest of the book! Now how to find that space

  58. i am spending time on my deck in the early morning with my bible and journal. We have had a year full of change, disappointment and loss. I want a reboot, a fresh start – to really recover the joy of my first love with Jesus.

  59. I’m going to mountain hotel by myself Aug 4th

  60. I would love to have this for my amazing daughter-in-law. She is such a strong woman and has just started her walk with Christ. She has had a very tough life growing up and we are truly blessed that God brought her into our lives. My son, who claims to be an atheist, brought her to meet us 3 years ago and the were married 6 months later. They have tried for 2 years to get pregnant and then in February they received the wonderful news that she was pregnant. Pregnancy was going amazing. Baby’s heartbeat was very strong and she was moving and jumping all over the place. At 4 months (18 weeks 6 days) Sophia Angel Grace was born into our lives. Unfortunately with being so early, she did not survive. My fear was by losing their baby it would cause them both to pull further away from God. But our God is amazing. Daniella has turned to God in every way! She has been a leader of encouragement and faith. Sharing her belief with my son and encouraging him to turn to God for strength during the weeks since Angel Grace was born. This Sunday, July 5th, Dani will be baptized and I know she will continue with her search and love for Christ.

    • I just read a story where the U.S. is in danger of losing it’s “AAA” credit rating as well. So if, eventually everyone loses their credit rating who has the advantage? Gold makes sense to me, because it’s not involved in the currency race to 0. (I’m not sure who’s in the lead for the race to the bottom of the toilet; but I would think with the U.S. &#l;u02stimu82s” packages, bailing out everything and everyone in sight, that they would ultimately be the winners/losers.)

  61. Katrina says:

    Time in the morning? Ridding myself of “shoulds”.

  62. Roberta says:

    I am going to restart my Vitamin D supplements so that I will not be so tired and then I will be able to getup early in the morning so I can start journaling in my quiet time.

  63. Finding who I am in Christ is my mission the next few months. My husband and I are both hurting people. We are doing a “reset” of ourselves then together to allow God to work in us and restore our marriage. He moved out today and we will start counseling in a week. We have tried unsuccessfully to heal while living together so this was suggested by his counselor. I guess it could be called marital white space.
    So we are both seeking healing and desire to be restored. Praying for God’s will in all things. May His Word fill my soul as He walks beside me during this time.

  64. Wow! This speaks to my heart! I need to take the time to spend with Jesus each day, not doing that right now. I know when I spend that special time, my day goes smoothly and I seem to have more time.

  65. So here in my life. I am blessed to taking the courage given by Him to leave a successful carreer and begin with a blank page everyday, working to the margin, not from the margin. God is good all the time and all the time God is good. Wanting to make a note of every blessing every day, his gifts. Cannot wait to read the book.

  66. At the end of the day, often the house is quiet and I have some time to myself. This time is open for prayer, reading, catching up on email, etc…but it could be my white space if I let it be! 🙂

    • I struggle with this, and even though I have always carved out time for me, I have recently allowed the pressures of life, work, family, to override my need for space, or what I call, downtime. For me, this is usually time to create something. Creativity feeds my soul! I can pray for others, listen to worship music, or just be silent. Yesterday, took this time and enjoyed the day in my sewing room. Restful, expressing my innermost self with my hands.
      Thank you for a nice giveaway!

  67. Ada Victoria says:

    Rest… Yes and please Lord! No special place needed.

  68. I would definitely rest better and have less stress if I wouldn’t over-think things. I would have more time to strengthen my relationship with God. Thanks for the giveaway, would love to win this book!!!

  69. This book sounds likea great read that anyone can relate to! I have been making an effort to sit down and read my bible and devotions every morning, even if the kids are awake. It’s important to me that they see how much of a priority it is to me, to have that time before I start each day and the chaos begins!

  70. Leigh F says:

    Wow….I really need this book. This blog describes exactly how I feel….lost, going thru the motions of life, just surviving but with no real joy. I can’t wait to read this book.

  71. So need to read this book…just surviving.

  72. Christina says:

    Thank you for the post. Someone was just sharing about stopping for rest and here it is again. Nothing I thought I needed but maybe God is talking to me?

  73. Wow, this is exactly what i need “Whitespace”. I can relate to feeling overwhelmed because i feel like I’m always trying to fill everyone’s expectations of me. (((Which is exhausting and impossible))) I like to be led by the holy spirit not the pressures of the world; therefore my first step is to fast so God can lead, guide and direct me on how to get the whitespace i long for. Thanks, I look forward to reading your book!

  74. I often feel so overwhelmed, and I tell God, I am NOT ignoring you, I cant find time.. I pray, but I dont get that close deep connection because of constant interuption.

    sigh.

  75. With everything I feel that I am responsible for, there is just no time for me. I am a wife, mother, grandmother, friend, employee, confidante, sole caregiver to a mother with dementia, and the list goes on and on. Most days I feel so overwhelmed that I want to escape. I know that I need to escape to spend more time with the Lord. When do you get to the point where you learn to totally depend on him?

  76. I need to breathe. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the expectations. Not just from others, but from within myself.

  77. Donna R says:

    Don’t “make” the time, TAKE the time. Our jesus at the top of my to do list

  78. Sounds like an excellent book and just what I need! Whitespace!

  79. Donna Torrado says:

    I like the night time to have total quite. I love devotionals in the morning but to much busyness and talking for me. Even if I get up early they somehow manage to magically wake up early too.

  80. Beth Stoy says:

    IThank you for this. It resonates deep within. I seem to always be on the go. Whether it be working, volunteering or helping friends out. I try to find a time for solitude, but never seem to be able to sit at Jesus’s feet long enough to be completely filled up by Jesus. I need to do a better job at this

  81. Jennifer says:

    I need to let go of the “shoulds” and just be – enjoying this precious summer with my babies, and trusting God to provide what is necessary, and having faith to let go of what He assures me is not. Praying to receive, release, and rest. 🙂

  82. The idea of white space for my soul speaks to my heart. It has been almost a year since we lost my dear son Sean to an accidental heroin overdose at age 29. I am still trying to grapple with the circumstances of his death. My church/friends have been a great comfort but as time goes on- the care lessens and people think you should be moving on. I know that he was a believer which brings comfort but my mama heart still longs to hear his voice call me and give him hugs. This has forced me to slow down, look at my priorities and cherish my family- husband/ 3 sons/ 2 dtg in laws/ and 1 grandchild. I understand how Jesus felt as he wept at the tomb of Lazarus. But my soul still longs for that deep rest

  83. Malinda says:

    I too am among the many other women that get caught up with the many responsibilities of being a wife/mother. I have just recently attended a youth camp with the youth of our church. In one of our sessions we were asked the question as to whether we would come back as a different person as to the person in which we came to camp. I was very convicted of this and I am praying that each and everyday I grow in Christ. It is my goal to start each and everyday with him and let him prepare the day ahead. I believe that if we as women can do this, we will better equipped to do the tasks that he has called us to do.

  84. Bobbi Lynn Miller says:

    I want to give myself permission to STOP and drink in the little sweet moments ,rather than continue to drive myself to FIRST complete all the tasks that i “think ” have to be done , AND THEN i will slow down for those moments of relaxing with my family ,and even with God . This is such a struggle for me.

  85. First, being able to sleep would help; then I could wake up earlier and feel more rested.

    I got of schedule, when I went on a mission trip, to Costa Rica, with my daughter and our youth group. For whatever reason I have had trouble getting back into the groove, and back on schedule. I am praying, for God’s help, in this area.

  86. This is me! My goal this year was to go to bed before midnight. I’m failing so I need this book!

  87. Thanks so much for this gentle reminder of Jesus calling us to His rest! We’re so caught up in ‘doing’ that not only do we forget to ‘be’ but, sadly, we don’t know what/how to. Would love to have a copy of the book to read and share with family/friends.

  88. This came at a perfect time! I’m struggling with health issues and major overload at work. Everything has me overwhelmed. I’m ready to have a joyful life and my soul longs for the “white space”. I believe scheduling on my calendar my “white space” along with the help from this book will give me the rest & connection to Jesus I’m needing right now. Thank you for bringing this book to us. I appreciate the opportunity to win a copy.

  89. Thank you for sharing this post. Sometimes I think as women we get so overloaded but don’t know how to get out of it. We may know what we need to do but getting there is hard. Thank you for the reminder that we all need to find those places and that we will not completely get there without our Lord and Savior.

  90. Missy B says:

    I made a summer bucket list of things to do. I try and do 1 thing on the list a week or a few during the month.

  91. Jennifer L says:

    I would love to win this book. So hard to find the quietness in a house full of boys.

  92. Rachel Brunswick says:

    I have been wanting to get up early in the morning to accomplish quiet time with the Lord. I have yet to actually get up though!

  93. Kelli Wright says:

    Thank you. I so needed to read this today. Am so tired of being so busy and doing multiple tasks for almost everyone but myself. It seems like the more I do, the more there is to be done. My to-do list seems endless and never seems to be enough hours in the day. My soul needs the rest you talked about. I often feel like I am not enough and have no purpose…God used your words to speak to me. Thanks again

  94. This sounds like I book that I must read. It’s on my read list. I really would love to win a copy of this book as my heart and soul longs for this kind of rest. Thanks for the chance Renee and Bonnie.

    Blessings,
    Cindy

  95. Michelle Austin says:

    I am thinking that since I live in a lake community that I should walk to the lake and spend time by the water before alot of people are at the beaches…nature seems to soothe me and I have been spending most of y time in the house and stressed for a few years now.

  96. Delores McPherson says:

    There is so much busyness in my life that I find myself shutting out what I desire most – that intimacy with Jesus.

  97. Charity says:

    Whitespace is what we all need, so we can truly understand how God loves us and we can enter into the kind of relationship He wants with us and we lo g for.

  98. Could really use this book right now. Really going through a lot.

  99. Jennifer says:

    Oh how this is me! The rut, the what next? Thank you for digging deep to support us all!

  100. I am so tired and stressed beyond words from work. Hubby is retired, but time never seems the tight time for me. The real me is so lost. Not from the Lord but from who the real me is.

  101. A nice detox bath a couple times a week…ok, once a week 😉 Or even go out and walk around our 80 acres once a week – maybe even with My Man 😀 Or both! Now, to remind / make myself to do these things…

  102. Crazy as it sounds, this Summer with College-aged sons and our work in full time ministry has been the busiest ever–juggling schedules, cars and just generally going non-stop. My morning quiet time is my lifeline but craving ‘white space’ in general….

  103. Oh, how this is something I so deeply need.

  104. Marissa Boone says:

    I long to just sit at the Savior’s feet, but I am in a whirlwind of constant chaotic activity. I work full time and have two kids that are 4 and 8. My marriage is teetering and I have contemplated leaving because of the dysfunction that my husband is involved in. I feel responsible for so much and so fearful and angry. My faith has always been very strong and still is, but I am absolutely exhausted. I spend time with the Lord everyday, but know that I have been not been fixing my eyes entirely on Him. It’s so often to press through in our own strength and to keep digging. Even though we may be catching glimpses of Him, it isn’t enough, He must be our number one priority and all else will fade away. God bless.

  105. This so spoke to me, I am a wife, mother and teacher and I know that tired feeling it has been a big thing this year for me. I know that God will give me rest he does. I have found my self longing just to rest I feel so out of anything to give to anyone most days. I need to have my cup refilled but finding time to get away to a ladies conference hasn’t work out this year so I am in a spiritual drought. I would like to get a copy of this book in order to fill my cup.

  106. This book seems to cover everything I really need to put into practice in my life right now. Would love to get the full scoop on how to find that white space!

  107. Donna S says:

    Oh boy! I am not alone. This just sounds like my life.

  108. I have felt an emptiness that I keep thinking is from other factors, like exhaustion (no sleep with a 11 mo old who wakes frequently), lack of quiet time, lack of time with my husband, etc. But the deep truth has revealed itself to me a few times- I’m lacking quiet quality time with God. I need to reduce my time on social media (where I go when I need a break and have no energy to do anything else. Small bit by bit, I will seek God. Fill my soul, Lord.

  109. Keri pascoe says:

    I’ve tried not to overschedule my boy this summer. It’s ok to just veg because I know when school starts, it’s going to be crazy and chaotic again. Just trying to do nothing is harder than I thought it could be!

  110. barbara rivera says:

    Quiet time early in the morning. When the world is quiet and I can hear the still small voice of God.

  111. Michelle says:

    I JUST sat down in tears, after a long day, just put the last load of laundry in, I said to myself, I’m so tired, I need to rest….I feel so grumpy and burned out in every way…then came upon this! Perfect timing.

  112. Terri Bruntmyer says:

    Wow! Reading the blog post about this book really hits home! I so want to read more! With my long commute to work, chores at home and stressful job I never have time for myself, and struggle to make time for my Bible. Most evenings I only sit down for a few minutes to eat dinner, then before I know it, it is 10:30 and I am too tired. My job is very busy, very stressful, many days I don’t even get a lunch break. I feel overwhelmed, exhausted, stressed. “our souls long for space to breathe” hits the nail on the head, that is exactly how I feel. I am too busy to breathe and just be me! I ache for time with my Bible, for Bible studies, for hobbies I haven’t touched in a few years. I seem to have lost myself in the stress and busy days. I am determined to find a way to read this!

  113. One moment I am sooo connected…and then, the next day….poof…everyday struggles and i just get tired. Tired of fighting, tired of the struggles, tired of the stress… all while making sure I steer clear of all my past demons…
    Great exert from this book..thanks for sharing.

  114. This book sounds wonderful! So needed by so many of us!

  115. Rest. Wow sometimes “rest” feels like it is a bad word. To rest is to feel guilty that your not doing something you ought to be doing. But in reality I long for rest… I put my “dead” phone on the charger and then sit on the porch swing and try to focus on nothing. Trying to just let myself be… To listen… To offer up my “here am I.” The older I get the more I discover there is so much I do not know. And wishing I had more time to learn and grow.

  116. Loretta Dettmer says:

    I really thought I was the only one who put too many demands on myself. This book is just what I need. Hopefully I can make it a priority to read and learn to live my life, and to enjoy life as God intended.

  117. Kristi H. says:

    This is just what I need! I have many unrealistic expectations of myself, which has been a big part of finding myself in a place of being homebound with several health issues. Yet, I’m still struggling to really rest in the Lord. He has been nudging my heart daily- to let go, rest, listen & follow His lead through each moment. When I do, I am more able to see from His perspective, worry less, have renewed joy, have a sense of balance within myself & just BE. Sadly, this only last for a short part of the day. I’d love to return to the days when it was long-lasting! I believe God is giving me this time to focus on Him, His Word, truths, promises & desires for me. This will bring the best healing and the ability to give from an overflow of Him within me! I praise God for tools like your book!

  118. I try to set aside time in the morning. I also utilize time in the car to talk with God.

  119. BarbaraSwarthout says:

    I would love to get this book. It sounds amazing.

  120. Justine says:

    How sad to read all these comments and see that we are all placing unreasonable demands on our time. So important to carve out some whitespace to be with the Lord.

  121. Been searching for the next”right” book/devotional! This is perfect

  122. I know how important having white space can be in my life. I’ve been struggling the last few years trying to find it, and when I get a few moments where I have it, it’s like coming up for that big gulp of air after jumping into the deep end of a swimming pool. You don’t realize how depleted you are until you’re gulping that “air”. My problem is finding it daily. The demands of motherhood and a profession where I’m responsible for so many and so much, I admit that there are times I want to go far, far away and just be. I have found it is a choice to not allow the circumstances of my day rule over my time, but even then that becomes another thing I have to do. God has been good and gentle in teaching me to lean on His strength and to let go of being so responsible. I’m looking forward to reading this book and gaining more insight as to how create white space in my life.

  123. Kim Stewart says:

    Great subject that Bonnie is covering – can’t wait to read this!

  124. Kelly G says:

    Wow! My husband andnI both lost our jobs within weeks if each other due to cut backs. It was a total shock to us. We have three children, and my husband is a part tume music leader at our church. So to take time for me, to rest, are very difficult. This book is exactly what I neex.

  125. I go in phases with this. Sometimes I am really good at carving out time and other times I get so caught up in the craziness of being a mom to small kiddos. Things get going so fast that I usually don’t realize how wound tight I am until I’m close to a breakdown. I’m learning that rest for me isn’t always a nap (although a lot of the time it is!) but a ride alone in the car, reading, a real conversation, or doing something to take care myself. Im excited about this book because I need inspiration for keeping my quiet time the top priority!

  126. EILEEN GRASSO says:

    I’m weary…already…and we are deep in the midst of this battle called ‘cancer’ …. my husband has been diagnosed with a very rare and aggressive form of pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer…”incurable,” we’ve been told…but our Abba is Jehovah Rappha…THE God Who Heals…and, is faithful…one day at a time we praise and thank Him for the healing that’s on the way…according to His will…His timing…on one side of heaven or the other…in the Mighty Name of Jesus…

  127. shannon horton. says:

    After a year I’m still feeling lost. … a divorce , the murder of my 31 yr old brother by his wife’s hands and me trying to find myself after years of abuse. For me I need to carve out time of sleep to just be quiet and find out who I am and who God made me to ve, my purpose.

  128. I try to spend time early in the morning doing my devo. Jesus needed time alone therefore we should too.

  129. Oh my this just reading this blog has sent my mind swirling. I am in need of whitespace. I’ve read some of these posts and we are ALL facing battles. My brother died back in October and it has sent my life into a tornado just swirling about, I have stayed close to Jesus and He called me out of my job as my church secretary and everything is just confusing for me right now. I haven’t slept good in months and I am having difficutlies forgiving things of the past and those who hurt my dear brother (he died of natural causes but he was so beaten down emotionally). I am thankful for those who have the gift of writing such books as this, that make us dig deep within ourselves. Thank you and have a blessed day 🙂

  130. Just hung a hammock between the Aspen trees in my yard. This Sabbath I took a few minutes to just relax, breathe and watch the leaves dance in the breeze. It was like heaven on earth for a few minutes!

  131. I found some white space fishing at a pond with my family. There was a nice breeze in the shade and I fell asleep.

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