Popular Christian blogger turns author
There are oodles of blogs for women out there today. The ones I get excited about are those that are honest, real, funny, and have the power to altar our thinking on the world and our relationship with God. One of those is by Kristen Welch. Her blog, wearethatfamily, is a favorite among women, especially moms, of all ages and stages in life.
Kristen has successfully made the leap to books with her new releases Rhinestone Jesus. I’m thrilled to have Kristen here today to share about her book. If you find yourself needing the courage to say yes to whatever God might be leading you to then this is the book for you.
In high school, Kristen Welch wore a big, sparkly rhinestone “Jesus” pin to school every day and carried her Bible wherever she went. (Yes, she was that girl.) But she didn’t realize her faith, though sincere, was shallow; much like her artificial accessory, it would one day tarnish, no longer a true fit for who she was. As real life catapulted Kristen into places and situations she’d never imagined, there came a day when she stood shocked in the slums of Africa and realized in one desperate moment that Jesus wasn’t enough for her. At least . . . she wasn’t living like He was.
On the brink of a risk bigger than any she’d ever taken, Kristen knew she didn’t stand a chance—unless she was willing to put aside the rhinestones and get branded by the real thing. Rhinestone Jesus is the story of one woman’s journey from comfortably living a safe, “good-girl” faith that didn’t cost much, to realizing that God was daring her to say yes to a bolder, more authentic, more dangerous way. This story of spiritual adventure throws the doors wide open for any woman who’s ever thought of herself as “just a mom.” Kristen will inspire and empower you to say yes to God right where you are—and stand amazed at how your life will shine.
I like safety. I like control. I like comfort.
I like a plan.
When I said yes to God, I didn’t know where it would take me, but I knew I couldn’t live another day for myself. I didn’t know leaving behind my safe, comfortable life and the American Dream would take me on a journey of wild obedience.
But it has.
There has never been a wild thing about me–not my hair, my clothes, my lifestyle, my past. Nothing. I have always lived a calculated, well-planned, safe life. If you watched the first ten years of motherhood on video, you would hear me say “be careful” in a sing-song warning to my children 1,784,200,290 times.
But now, with a God-sized yes tucked under my belt, people assume I am courageous.
That’s what happens when we see people do something scary. But more often then not, they are terrified—I am terrified. We don’t need more courage to live out our faith. We don’t need more bravery, we simply need peace to look fear in the face and discover that love is the cure for what scares us.
Whether it’s losing our life for the sake of the gospel or dying to our wayward flesh, we can let our fear strengthen us. Fear is a present weakness; it is also a catalyst to keep saying yes.
So, you must know, I’m still scared to death. But I have peace in my fear.
“Give up yourself, and you will find your real self. Lose your life and you will save it. Submit to death, death of your ambitions and favorite wishes every day and death of your whole body in the end submit with every fiber of your being, and you will find eternal life.” CS Lewis
Fear isn’t just uncertainty wrapped up in the unknown. When we peel pack the layers, we discover a lack of trust and a loss of control. That’s the root of fear.
Our yes to God should scare us.
Not to keep us immobile, but to keep us dependent on the One who asks us to say it in the first place.
Fear keeps us moving towards God.
“We loudly keep track of all the failures of commission around us, but never mention the countless failures of omission, all the mistakes that were made by not being bold,” Seth Godin.
The times I have been most afraid in my life—quitting secure jobs, saying yes to a God-sized dream, entering my teenager’s bedroom—these are the moments I have felt most awake. We think playing it safe and living within our comfort zone is the way to feel alive. But when we get dirt under our nails and follow Jesus into risky places, this is where we realize our comfort was actually slowly killing our joy.
Yes, there is fear in obedience. But peace keeps us on the journey.
And the joy that follows our yes to God is wild.
Kristen Welch grew up in a suburb of Houston, Texas. In the 1990s she attended a small Bible college, where she met her husband and graduated with degrees in Christian education and English.
For the first ten years of marriage, she worked alongside her pastor-husband in youth and children’s ministry in Arkansas, New Mexico, and Florida, often writing her own curriculum and resources. During this decade, she endured the ups and downs of life. It wasn’t until she became a busy mother of three that she began to blog about her life. Her book Rhinestone Jesus: Saying Yes to God When Sparkly Safe Faith Is No Longer Enough is her journey of her wild yes to God and it may be exactly what your heart’s been aching for.