Living Radically

If you would have asked me at the beginning of December what I’d be doing mid January of 2017, I laugh now to think of my answer.

I would have carelessly rattled off something about the craziness of “pilot season” auditions, the monotony of life as a nanny, and the fickle stupidity of trying to find a respectable date in New York City.

And, *sigh*, I just shake my head at how none of that even matters. And just how, where I actually find myself now, mid January 2017, is in a whole ‘nother stratosphere.


What am I doing? I’m helping my mom get her life back after her strokeAt home.

At home.

I’ll tell you what, there’s not much more humbling in life than sleeping in your childhood bed, as a mid/late twenty-something, single, and with an uncertain/unplanned future.

That, friends, is a slice of humble pie.


And as I was having an (admittedly) selfish moment of self-pity, with text messages positively blowing up my phone, all from group chats making plans for Saturday night in NYC, that I had an “ah-ha” moment. A bit of a lightbulb situation.

I’ve been looking at my decision to come back home for this season as a bit of a…oh, I don’t know…a pause. A time out. A period of stagnation.

But actually, what I’ve done…is radical.

Radical: “Characterized by departure of tradition.”

Yup. I’d say that pretty much sums it up.

If I’m honest, that word scares me a little bit. I think, especially with the election season still in our rear view mirrors, we hear that word, and we think of “Far-Out Libs” or alt-right nut jobs.


But I’ve come to have a bit of a new appreciation for the word, as I’ve been thinking more and more about my radical decision to give up (albeit temporarily) my life in NYC, my acting career, my job, being in daily physical contact with my friends, and hopes at finding a boyfriend….what I’m doing is actually a complete act of faith. 

And the more I swirl that around in my mind, the more I realize just how much, whether I realize it or not, I am totally and completely depending on Jesus right now.

Because here’s the thing…listing off all those things that I’m “giving up”…there’s not a single ounce of me that is getting anxiety or heart palpitations thinking about it. And, in all honestly, I probably should be starting to sweat under the collar when I really think about it.

But I’m not. I’m at complete peace.

And I can only attribute that to one thing…

Whether I realize it or not, I am completely trusting Jesus. I have completely surrendered my life to His plan. Because you know what? I don’t understand what the hell is going on in my life right now, but I’ve got to believe that He’s going to see me through…in abundance. And all those things on my “list” of things I’m “abandoning…” God is going to have me end up right where I’m supposed to be. And right now, that’s being with my best friend…my mom.

Growing up, my entire life has been one giant exercise of surrendering to Jesus. And honestly, I’m kind of chuckling thinking about it, because really, my life has been one big “practice drill” for the main event — right here, right now.

The anorexia, the ulcerative colitis…those derailments of my life — for a good 4 or 5 years, collectively, when all was said and done…I had to completely hand over my life, my body, my plans, my everything to Jesus, and He has never failed me. Not once. He always brought me through, to a place that was better than anything I could have planned for myself.

I can only see a tunnel vision of possibilities for my life, but God…He creates the picture. He is the artist of my life, weaving the tapestry. All I can see is the back of it…with all the threads in a giant mess, criss crossing and doubling back on themselves. It’s not until I turn the tapestry around to see that God has been, truly, creating a beautiful masterpiece the whole time. I just couldn’t see it from that perspective.

My decision to come home and be with my mom during this crucial time in her recovery, sure, it’s radical. But it’s also an act of faith. I do believe I am doing God’s will, being with the woman who gave me life when she needs it most. And in doing so, I am in complete surrender.

But I’m not afraid. Because Jesus, I trust in You. 

And if I’m really trusting in Jesus, then I’ve got to be forthright about something that has been moving in my spirit.

I’m getting such a strong nudge to do something that…well…it scares me to even give voice to publicly. Because in doing so, I am putting it out there. On the record. Documenting a goal that I am now accountable to.

But I think God has given me this quiet season in my life to finish up writing the book that I started when BeautyBeyondBones began, a little over a year ago. I have been called to complete it, but have never found the time, between my job and my friends and keeping up the rat race in NYC. And, now, I find myself with the time to do it.

Turning BBB into more than just a blog…that scares me. But just like everything else in life right now, I’ve got to just hand this over as well, and say, Jesus I Trust in You.

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341 thoughts on “Living Radically

  1. Hi BBB,

    Yes, you are living the words out. This is the nuts and bolts of a life of faith. I will pray for your book. When the Lord has the right timing, He gives you time to do it. Now with life under your belt, maybe its time. I am in the same boat. My blog is actually secondary to my book. It is a long road, but it will be worth whatever God is bringing out of it.

    Have a great week. In Christ,


    On Thu, Jan 19, 2017 at 4:00 PM, BeautyBeyondBones wrote:

    > beautybeyondbones posted: “If you would have asked me at the beginning of > December what I’d be doing mid January of 2017, I laugh now to think of my > answer. I would have carelessly rattled off something about the craziness > of “pilot season” auditions, the monotony of life as a nan” >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Gary! Oh thank you so much for your prayers. I love that – “When the Lord has the right timing, He gives you time to do it.” THat gave me goosebumps! THat’s going on the fridge! hugs xox


      1. Oh, hey I liked your courage photo with the two fingers hugging. I noticed that was your picture. Can I use that in a post? I just didn’t want to use that without permission.


      2. haha aw thanks. yeah, i really liked that little image too, so I just had to put the saying on it! haha Yes! absolutely! I’d be honored it you used it 🙂 Go for it!! hugs xox


  2. It is both terrifying and so peaceful to hand the reigns over to Jesus. I’m at a point of being patient and letting him work on me before my life moves on. I’ve been reading about being patient and letting God work and I came up on something interesting. One author (I think it was Joyce Meyer) wrote about what to do while you wait. I was like, well you just wait…. duh. Nope, pray, serve, and expect. Continue to pray to see His wisdom, serve others, and expect your prayers to be answered. Wow! So we don’t just sit there twittleing our thumbs? My ADD brain is so happy to know what to do while we wait! (and I obviously have no idea how to spell twittleing…)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks for this kind reflection. You’re right, it’s terrifying, but with it come a strange sense of peace and freedom. I’ll definitely check that author out. haha it looks correctly spelled to me!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 grateful for you! big hugs xo

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I once heard that “the land between is fertile soil.” It’s a scary place to be – but you grow so much in that time of taking your leap of faith and seeing where God will have you land. And you will never regret being their for your mom! God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Caralyn,

    How odd. You wouldn’t know of course, that I had started writing a book for my daughter about three years ago, and nearly lost it when I lost all my data. Thankfully, I still have the printout I read to her when I finished 13,000/- words. It then lay somewhere.

    Last year in July, I met a man who would later become a friend, and then virtually family, and when I found out that he had illustrated a book, and being intrigued by him, I ran my unfinished book by him, and was fairly surprised by his well-thought out response with good reasons, why I should finish it.

    Months passed, and then as the season ripened, with several confirming indicators, I decided to start the blog, knowing that if I could sustain this, I would be able to finish the book at the right time. Little did I know that the blog would turn into my devotional and badly needed time at my point of life, to get time with God and go deep with Him in reflection and dialogue. I will certainly now pick up the unfinished book when the time is ripe and finish it, and even if I don’t, I would have discovered the blog and people I’m getting to know through it, not even counting the significant changes happening in my family’s life by virtue of sharing our stories.

    I really hope you are able to write your book, and that God will really speak to you and through you in your writing. Beyond the shadow of a doubt, it will reach far out.

    We’re continuing to pray for you, your family, and your future husband. I was touched by your post about your mom, and think that it is such a blessing to have Godly parents you can look up to. I’ve been a parent to my parents for so many years now, that I had to deal with and continue to deal with many issues of frustration, burdensomeness and the inability to go beyond the relationship we’ve been circling in for as long as I can remember. You can guess I’ve lost it uncountable times, and I still can’t understand how God can change people like me, and continue to work in me. At the end of the day, it’s an honour to serve and love them. We used your post in our family prayer time today, and were blessed by the reminder to love and serve our parents. It was humbling, and I’m grateful for your honesty.

    Many blessings to you and your parents,


    1. Hi Indi! Oh wow, what an incredible story. You’re right, it’s funny how those things turn out. Sometimes writing is really therapeutic. and i love this blog community! so many wonderfully kind new friends! including you and your family! 🙂 thanks for your continued prayers 🙂 Yeah, i really do look up to my parents so much. it sounds like your parents are really lucky to have you in their lives 🙂 And gosh, I am so touched and humbled that your family found this post meaningful. that seriously brings my heart so much joy. i hope your week is going well. big hugs to you friend xox


  5. I am so sorry to hear about your mom having a stroke and that is amazing that you have headed home to help her through her recovery. I will be praying for you both during this season of your lives.

    And good luck with writing the book, I look forward to seeing you announce that it is about to hit book shelves.


  6. You should totally finish a book. Not a lot of people have the courage to talk about the kind of stuff you blog about. I think it’s something girls need. (Piece of advice, I write a lot, always, always reads tuff twice. And get a second opinion.) I think it would be awesome for you to share your story.


    1. oh thank you so much for the encouragement! Yeah, I’m pretty much an open book! hahah maybe irresponsibly so! hahah That’s great advice. Yes, I’m rereading it right now actually, and it’s hard to get through…my writing has changed a lot since then. I’m thinking of a total fresh start! but I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the encouraging words. Big hugs to you xox


  7. God Bless you today and every day for the gift you are and the gifts you give to all around you, especially your mom!! xoxoxoxoxo God Bless her to as she recovers. There is so much more that is done today, offered today, etc. to help stroke patients recover. I pray that she will to the best that she can ❤ ❤


  8. So proud of you for living by faith and allowing God to help you through this time of transition and future uncertainty. Even though, it can be a scary time, it can also be a beautiful time of growing and increasing faith…really, it’s the best place to be: secure in the Father’s hands and totally dependent on Him. I will be praying for you. 🙂 Thanks for being such an inspiration to so many. I have started a new weekly event called, Friday’s Friends, and I have chosen to feature YOUR BLOG on Friday, February 24. I hope you like my entry, and I hope you keep inspiring many more along this journey! 🙂


    1. Thanks you so much for this thoughtful response. You’re right. It is definitely a time of growth and dependence on God. And wow! That’s so awesome! I’m absolutely honored that you’d feature my site! Can’t wait to read it ! Hugs and love xox

      Liked by 1 person

  9. What a beautiful and moving post. My prayers are with you and your mom. My mom is one of my best pals in this world, so I understand (and appreciate) your dedication!


  10. Hey BBB,

    Thanks so much for liking my post earlier! I appreciate that. More importantly, thanks so much for sharing your heart here for the world to see. That is so admirable. I really loved what you said, “I can only see a tunnel vision of possibilities for my life, but God…He creates the picture. He is the artist of my life, weaving the tapestry.” This is so true. Jonathan Helser once said in a sermon, “Have you ever pointed a flashlight at the stars? Or have you ever pointed it at the sun? It seems kind of pointless. But that’s what we’re doing when we point our dreams at God’s dreams over us. His dreams are like the sun compared to our little flashlight.” Often we can only see the little light at the end of the tunnel of possibilities, but man does that light shine the closer we get to it. Keep following the Light, my friend. God bless you, and especially with your endeavour with this book! I look forward to hearing more about you and your heart. 🙂

    Grace and peace,
    – Cody Wilkinson

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Cody, gosh thank you so much for such a kind and thoughtful response. It really means a lot. What a powerful quote – I’ll have to look up Jonathan’s stuff online!! Thanks for the encouragement. Hugs and love xox


  11. What a great message! I have truly enjoyed your posts and thank you so much for your likes on my page as well! You sound like you have been through a ton but retained your core values and gained strength in the process. Also, your Mom must be so proud to have you at her side!!!! Josh


    1. Thank you so much Josh! Oh gosh, I’m so glad that you’ve been enjoying my posts! thanks or taking the time to read them 🙂 aw, I’m the lucky one to be by *her* side 🙂 hope you’re having a great week so far. big hugs xox


      1. Haha, who doesn’t love a big hug! You are lucky to have each other for sure. And no worries on reading posts, if someone takes the time to read mine, I try to do the same!


  12. Although I don’t live in NYC, nor am I in the acting world, I can completely understand the rat race of life, and trying to find the time to do something that needs to be done, or that you’re called to do. Keep the faith and know that you have the support of many to walk along side of you.


  13. Thanks for stopping by my blog, The Little Red Wagon blog on WordPress! and liking my Faith post! Thank you for bravely sharing your journey! I have a very similar story and would love to connect with you. If I can be there to encourage or pray for you, I would love to help!
    God will give you ALL you NEED! Keep trusting Him! I am so proud of you!


  14. “And the more I swirl that around in my mind, the more I realize just how much, whether I realize it or not, I am totally and completely depending on Jesus right now[…]Whether I realize it or not, I am completely trusting Jesus. I have completely surrendered my life to His plan. Because you know what? I don’t understand what the hell is going on in my life right now, but I’ve got to believe that He’s going to see me through…in abundance.”

    Oh, I love that 🙂 You are like peter going above the water:

    [Jesus Walks on Water…27But Jesus immediately spoke up: “Take courage! It is I. Do not be afraid.” 28“Lord, if it is You, Peter replied, “command me to come to You on the water.” 29“Come,” said Jesus. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water, and came toward Jesus.… (Matthew 14:28)]

    When Jesus says: “Come with me”, you can trust that He will guide you and protect you. Maybe this doesn’t make sense for the rational mind, since the Holy Spirit works in a different way and from a higher perspective, but every new and then, you got to take a leap of faith. We see only a small part of the great divine plan. But if we are courageous enough to go the way, we are gradually becoming more and more aware of it.

    + Blessings to you,


    1. Oh gosh, thank you so much, Mark. That is seriously so kind you to say. I find so much comfort in that bible story. How all Peter had to do was keep his eyes on Him. Thanks for always being so encouraging. it means the world. hugs xo

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I’m sure your book will be wonderful. You have a lot to say. Write with relentless tenderness and listen to the life-giving words in your heart 🙂 Embrace the totality of all feelings, memories, pleasures and fears, pain and beauty. Everything can be transformed into the light of grace.


  16. I wish my faith was as strong as yours but it’s a work in progress. You’re right that hardships bear beautiful truths as well. I’m praying for you and your mom at this time and good luck with your book!💗


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