A Vision of Hope

As I was sitting at the airport this morning, scrolling through my phone, I came upon an email from a catholic publication I follow, informing me that today is the feast day of St. Mary Magdalene.

Mary Magdalene. The biblical woman that most people incorrectly remember as a prostitute.

I have such a big spot in my heart for this inspiring woman of the bible, because her story resonates with me so personally. And in fact, it hits incredibly close to home.

I think it is sometimes glossed over, but when Jesus met Mary Magdalene, she was possessed by seven demons. And He expelled them from her.

Yeah — uncomfortable topic. Exorcism from demons. Her past history has been sanitized as a “sinful woman,” but the fact is, the bible explicitly states that she was literally possessed by seven demons.

Luke 8:1-3 “After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with Him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out.

I think she is such a beautiful and important character that God includes in Jesus’ life. Because despite how incredibly captured and enslaved she was in her sin — to the point of literal demonic possession — God still used her in tremendously important ways. Not only was she with him throughout His ministry — and famously washed His feet with her tears and hair — she was also one of the few people present at Jesus’ crucifixion. But I think most importantly, she discovered that the tomb was empty and was the very first person that Jesus appeared to.

I don’t know about you, but that is just remarkably encouraging. I mean, isn’t it?! That Jesus could take a life that was so broken and desolate in sin, and being controlled by evil — and transform it to such a vision of hope, and an instrument to share the gospel.

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When resurrected Jesus appeared to her, He instructed her to go to the village and share what she had seen. She was the first evangelist. She was the first to spread the good news. The fact that such an honor was given to a) a woman, and b) someone with such a past — that powerful truth is not lost on me.

If you’ve read my story of my anorexia, then you will know why this hits so close to home for me, personally. And that is because, I am a firm believer that my eating disorder was a form of spiritual warfare.

Again, an uncomfortable topic, but the degree to which I was held captive by the darkness and the evil that had taken residence in my heart — it was causing me to slowly self-destruct through starvation, day by day, nearly to the point of death.

And I have shared openly on here, and on various podcasts, I also had a powerful experience at inpatient where I believe that an evil spirit was released. I was with my therapist, curled up in a tiny ball, and it was as though I was watching the scene from above. I heard this loud, scary, cavernous voice come out of my mouth, “I LIED” — and for the first time I told the truth about all the deception and manipulation I had been doing during my anorexia. I cried. I smiled. I asked for Jesus’ forgiveness and for the first time, truly embraced recovery.

You can read more about that here…

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But when I learned that Mary Magdalene had been possessed by seven demons, and then went on to live such an incredible life — it gave me so much hope.

I just thought about how she must have felt, washing the feet of our Lord with her tears, and drying them with her hair. And just the overwhelming gratitude, love, and admiration for her literal savior. Her rescuer that saved her life and transformed her heart.

I feel a direct kinship with her in that.

Her story is one of remarkable hope. One of redemption, that I think we all can take comfort in: There is no situation too desolate or far gone for the power of Christ’s transformative love. There is no person too broken, no circumstance that is “unsaveable.” Christ can make us new. He can renew even the most oppressed heart.

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I don’t know about you, but that is the Good News. And that is the truth I want to build my life on, today and everyday.

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5


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154 thoughts on “A Vision of Hope

      1. Hello thanks, i’m a huge fan of sharing and as a writer,thespain mu goal is for others to value good stories and that they have a voice and a story worh telling. Take good care of your sweet self!

  1. God seems to always take the lowliest to elevate His purposes. I’m reminded of Rahab the prostitute from Jericho who sheltered the Israelite spies and were spared when the city was razed. She’s even listed as a direct ancestor of Jesus!

    One might summarize the Sermon on the Mount as “Blessed are the lowly, for they shall be elevated!”

    As I’ve said before, it’s always pained me that my friend should have gone through such darkness, but God has elevated you in your BBB ministry. For that I praise God and give thanks for you!

    Thank you for such a great summary of Mary Magdalene!

    1. Hi Jeff! I think you’re so right about that — and what an ecouragement — He doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called! Yes! There are so many powerful examples like that in the bible — there’s that saying…Abraham was old, Noah was a drunk, Moses was a stutterer, Martha was a worrier…etc. He uses ALL of us no matter what. Thanks for always being in my corner. Hope you and your girls are having a great week so far! It was definitely a hot one over the weekend in NYC! Thank you for your email! I survived — and so did my AC unit!! Although…a date I was supposed to go on cancelled on me because it was “too hot.” Ugh — boys. hahha big hugs xox

      1. Oh good!!! Yeah dog days of summer as they say. Safe travels my friend!

  2. I’m with you. I’ve always found it so sad that Mary is such a misunderstood figure. This is a beautiful reminder that she, and all of us, are much more than what is often believed.

    1. Thank you so much Amy! I agree — very misunderstood. But such a powerful example of redemption! big hugs xox

  3. Nicely put. One of my radio theater plays, in the late 90’s,was about her life based on what scripture gives us. I wrote in a horrific scene where Jesus cleaned her of the demons. It won a Silver Microphone Award. I felt it was important to give her true story an audio stage. Glad you detailed her identity. God’s grip. – Alan

    1. Thank you so much! Oh wow that sounds like an awesome radio play! And WOW! congrats on your award. I wish I could hear the scene! thank you Alan! hugs xo

  4. Powerful story! Sometimes I feel we forget there is more to this world than what meets the eye. I am so happy that you’ve found peace.

    1. Thank you so much D! You’re so right – lots more to the world! Hugs and love xox

  5. Great post! 🙈
    What i learn is that some ppl carelessly title ppl when they dnt know that things change in a friction of a second and this person you are looking down on becomes better than you … i wish ppl remember her story and brake from this unlawful actions … Thank you for sharing lovely sis 💖

    1. Thank you so much Elber! You’re so right about that – God has the power to change situations in the blink of an eye! big hugs xo

  6. Beautiful, inspiring post! We so need the pure truth of the Gospel, the Good News. Jesus sacrificed Himself to save us, and He saves us every day!

    1. Thank you so much Kevin! You’re so right — this world needs the Good News now more than ever!! bighugs xo

  7. Excellent comparison my friend. Rock bottom is a familiar foe for us both, and you and I help people, including ourselves, climb out of it and refuse to return! Get behind us Satan.

    1. Thank you so much – you’re aboslutely right — even in rock bottom we have the power, through God, to turn things around 100%! AMEN! hugs xox

  8. Your brilliance, and sensitivity to Holy Spirit come across the pages so frequently Caralyn, with all pointing to Jesus Christ, His Grace and Mercy, given to all who will receive His gift of Salvation. The gift is free to us, but is the most expensive gift ever given. The cost was the sacrifice and crucifixion of the Son Of God Himself, Jesus Christ, the Messiah, King of kings, Lord of lords.
    As you mentioned, when reading Scripture, we read of Mary Magdalene at the cross, then seeing where tomb was, to see where her Saviour was buried. The next morning she and another Mary went to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus, to discover the tomb was empty. We read in Mark’s Gospel, that Jesus then called out to Mary M. As she was leaving, then told her to go tell the disciples.
    As you correctly said, Mary M. was the first evangelist / missionary, and also was directly sent by Jesus.
    I wonder in these days how so many can be against Women Pastors / Teachers Evangelists still. Some say they can teach children but not adults. “Hogwash” I would say to that.
    It was proven at the crucifixion and resurrection, that the men were not all around Jesus, but the ladies were going to do everything possible for Him, even after death.

    I wrote something many years ago, about the famous, outstanding ladies in the Bible that God used. I give it to people who say women should not be in those ministries, or to some women who continue put themselves or their gender down.

    I believe, in your life, Caralyn, Holy Spirit had you hand picked for service and ministry. As you were being prepared, and seeking more of what He would have you do, the enemy of your soul infiltrated your life in some way in an attempt to destroy you.
    Of course, our God is Greater, and His hand was upon you the whole time, and Holy Spirit dwelt in you continually, so the plan of the evil one could not work.
    As difficult as it seems, God allowed you to go through the difficulties and trials, and was strengthening you for His future plans.
    Due to your hurting experiences, you are now able to understand and assist hundreds, even thousands, directly, because you have been there. Your Victory over ED, can be related to so many people and their struggles, as you explain and emphasize so well.

    Romans 8:28
    28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

    We know you are called, we know you went through difficult, horrible times, we know God is working through you, for your good, and the good of many.
    God’s Word is always True.

    I thank you for going through all your suffering, and coming through the end Praising and Glorifying Jesus, to all who will listen, or read.

    God Bless you Caralyn,
    Luv, 😀🌹❤️😘

    1. Hi George! Thank you so much for this powerful response. I think you’re so right about that — God instructs all of us, and uses all of us — no matter man, woman, country of origin, race, etc — all to carry out His message and His mission! God has definitely carried me through, and I am so grateful for His healing. Thank you for this beautiful encouragment, George. I am blessed to have you as a friend. big bighugs x

  9. Forward Day by Day
    Monday, July 22
    Saint Mary Magdalene
    John 20:16 Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher).
    For me, Mary Magdalene represents closeness to Jesus. She reminds me of Jesus’ fragility, his tenderness, his human need to be cared for even in death. Mary is my window into Jesus’ humanity, which I always seek to understand and feel connected to.
    I can only imagine how dramatic this moment is for her. While Mary is still in deep mourning, her teacher appears. Her dear friend, whose death she is still wrapping her brain around, is now in front of her. She must be awash in so many feelings.
    Mary is the first to witness and tell the story of the resurrection. I like to think Mary was chosen because she was deemed the strongest of Jesus’ disciples — no betrayals, no denials — she never leaves him once, until he’s sealed in the tomb, and even then, she can’t stay away. May we all have Mary’s strength to abide, to bear witness, and to tell the good news.

    1. Closeness to Jesus — I love that so much. A window into His haminty — amen! this is so great. thank you for sharing! big hugs xo

  10. Thankyou for this beautiful reminder that no one is beyond the reach of HIS grace and the power of HIM in our lives can literally create Beauty from Ashes. Yes indeed there is hope in Jesus. 🙏🏼

    1. Thank you so much! You’re so SO right about that! Beauty from Ashes!! big hugs xo

  11. Spiritual Warfare is something I am very ignorant of and somewhat afraid to look into. I have a book gathering dust, “On Spiritual Warfare” because I thought it was about fighting sin. I cracked it open and set it down. I live in the twilight zone where I absolutely believe in the Truth of it (My Guardian Angel, hopefully, nods approvingly), but am scared to follow the thought to it’s ultimate conclusion. Since this is something you experienced personally, I will have to read your account and use you as my native guide. Can you suggest any resources where I might educate myself without…well, frightening myself?

    The world is complicated enough dealing with people, and I don’t feel adequately prepared to deal with spirits. Although this is something my Spiritual Director mentioned: There are Divine Persons (Triune God), Angelic Persons (Demons being fallen angels?), and Human Persons visible and invisible (like the creed). So living virtuously ought to include preparing for assailants from all persons. To quote Plato: “Wise men, in times of peace, prepare for war”.

    Perhaps this is why God worked this way through Our Blessed Mother, through Mary Magdalene, and even through you: Acknowledging that this is an imperfect generalization, I think most Men are ready and willing to fight any enemy they can see, but it is Women who we turn to for patiently enduring invisible sufferings beyond compare. I may have quoted this before (it’s a favorite of mine), but this is what Kipling observed in his poem The Female of the Species.

    If you’ll pardon the lengthy (but, I believe, apt) excerpt:

    But the Woman that God gave him, every fibre of her frame
    Proves her launched for one sole issue, armed and engined for the same;
    And to serve that single issue, lest the generations fail,
    The female of the species must be deadlier than the male.

    She who faces Death by torture for each life beneath her breast
    May not deal in doubt or pity—must not swerve for fact or jest.
    These be purely male diversions—not in these her honour dwells—
    She the Other Law we live by, is that Law and nothing else.

    She can bring no more to living than the powers that make her great
    As the Mother of the Infant and the Mistress of the Mate.
    And when Babe and Man are lacking and she strides unclaimed to claim
    Her right as femme (and baron), her equipment is the same.

    She is wedded to convictions—in default of grosser ties;
    Her contentions are her children, Heaven help him who denies!—
    He will meet no suave discussion, but the instant, white-hot, wild,
    Wakened female of the species warring as for spouse and child.

    So I will Pray thanksgivings that you endured such trials and that I am able to learn from your example.

    AMDG
    -Scoot

    1. Afterthought, look at this from your post about spiritual warfare:

      A surprising paradox in all of this, is that you’d think that when you’re “down and out,” you’d be the most vulnerable to spiritual attacks. But I think the opposite is true. I think that when we have a momentum going; when we’re on fire for the Lord and eagerly chasing after His plan for our lives, that is when Satan is going to do everything in his power to throw as many road blocks in your way as possible. That he’ll bring along seven friends to trip you up and shove you off course. I don’t think that is a coincidence.

      Seven friends? How many demons did Mary Magdalene endure?

      I’m not sure if that’s intentional but it sure strikes with force.

      1. Yes!!! Seven is a very powerful biblical number, and it’s what I’ve heard my mom say 🙂 hehe She’s the wise one — ALWAYS 🙂

    2. Hi Scoot, thank you for your response. I definitely can understand the fear of diving into spiritual warfare. One resource would be the Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis. And gosh, thank you for saying that, I am incredibly humbled. I think God uses broken, unexpected people, because we all can see a bit of ourselves in them. It makes doing His will something we can tangably see doing! Amen! Thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement. Grateful for you! big hugs xo

  12. This is just what Jesus does. He will take our ordinary and complicated lives and turned it into something extraordinary and inspiring to others.

    1. Thank you friend. Amen to that! He turns it into something extraordinary!! Hugs and love xox

  13. A very sweet and inspiring piece about hope.
    Thank-you.

    The story of Jesus healing Mary Magdalene reminds me of His gift to me. As I may have stated in the past – but maybe not – in February of 1990 before retiring one evening I asked aloud:

    “God, what am I suppose to do with my life.”

    I never expected an answer. When I awoke the next morning I lounged in bed – an experience came to me: a presence came in through my groin area and curled-up into a ball in my stomach and a name came to me. It was someone with whom I had met about a month earlier who was (is) a prominent member of the town where I reside. 1990 was before most had internet access so off to the phone book. I thought she would never be listed – but she was.

    I called her she answered and I relayed the story. She said that she had been curled up into a ball and had been thinking about killing herself. I made a verbal contract with her not to harm herself. The next day I spent the afternoon listening to her story from a compassionate place within. When she had finished I offered he names of local therapists and support groups.

    She said: “The universe put you out there to here my call and that’s all I needed.” The woman and I became friends and remain so until the ever expanding now.

    As a result of my answer from God I surrendered into my “seeing” and healing gifts. This has been a great blessing which continues to sustain me. The love that Jesus embodied and taught is the healing force that flows through me for the benefit of others.

    1. Oh my gosh, this story brought tears to my eyes! God definitely used you to minister to her and save her life. Thank you Lord, for using Kai to do your will!! You’re absoluetly right – when we surrender our plans, He comes in and uses us in His kingdom! hugs xo

    1. Thank you Darlene!! I’m so glad this resonated with you. You’re right! no such thing! big hugs xox

    1. Thanks Lorie! You’re so welcome – isn’t her life so inspiring?! Hugs and love xox

    2. Thank you Lorie, yeah same here! ISn’t her story just so powerful!? hugs xo

  14. My dear friend,

    This time I want to answer your lovely report with a poem that I have just written:

    Hope for a change

    When we deeply regret our sins with our tears
    It is Christ who washes them away

    He provides us a new beginning
    Gives us strength and courage

    His biblical Word: resonates like an echo
    “From now on sin no more…”

    Old dresses are putt off
    Replaced by clean clothes

    The lie changes to the truth
    The dirt gradually to cleanliness

    A process of consciousness
    Distinction between right and wrong

    In everyday life, we should sieve:
    Separating the bad from the good

    How much dirt is there still left
    That we do not see yet…?

    Consciousness is:
    To recognize oneself

    To make us visible
    What and how we really are

    “Every saint has his past
    And every sinner his future…”

    DidiArtist, 23.07.2019

    May the Lord give us the power to understand even the smallest sin we commit in our daily life in our thoughts, words, Hand deeds.

    Hugs and love, my dear friend
    Didi

    1. Oh wow, what an incredibly beautiful and powerful poem, Did!! THank you so much for sharing it with me. Amen to that — every saint has a past and every sinner a future!!! love that. hugs xo

  15. Wow! You did it again. You managed to weave your story, with another true story, one taken from the word of God, and minister. With love and tenderness you shared the good news that Jesus came to heal the sick, and set the captive free. Very nicely done.

    1. Oh gosh, thank you so much Mark, I really appreciate that — He really is the ultimate Savior and Healer! Praise God for that! hugs xo

  16. Awesome post.. Keep it up.

    Having experienced such exorcisms in front of my own eyes, the only way to remain completely delivered to be close to the one who delivered you – Jesus. The bible specifically says to be careful to not let such spirits take hold as they can come back 7 times stronger.
    Of course most churches don’t speak about such topics hence why there is such confusion in the body of Christ, much to Satan’s happiness; because he could continue to enslave the humanity further.
    “My people perish for lack of knowledge”.. Certainly is the case the body of Christ is powerless to stop it because much of our leadership don’t take the time to teach us the important truths. But I digress…

    So what is the truth? Someone, even Christians, can be so enslaved to their sins that it opens doors for evil spirits to take hold and control. I know this because I’ve seen it first hand.
    Have you ever met someone who keeps getting into bad relationships? Or every relationship that he/she has/had, starts of great but then turn disastrous?
    Have you ever seen how some ladies get out of one abusive relationship, only to fall into another one..?
    These are results of evil spirits having hold of someone’s life; in that particular area.

    And this is only one aspect. Other aspects can be from financial issues, health issues, etc… And we as Christians have the power to cast these spirits away from our lives. But it only works when we have the knowledge.

    Perhaps Mary Magdalene was a prostitute… Perhaps she was a different person… Scripture is subject to interpretation and that often leads to various theories. All I know is that it is plausible that she had so much demonic influence on her and her deliverance is something to be noted.
    Mary is one person that we should strive to emulate in the sense that she knew where her deliverance came from and she chose to stay free by being in the presence of Christ and accepting God’s will and plan for her life. That way she remained free and she also became His instrument here on earth.

    I’m happy that you were delivered Care and with this blog, you’re continuing His good work. Keep it up..

    1. Amen — be close to the One who delivered us! Thank you for this wonderful response. You’re so right about that — her deliverance is what we need to remember! And amen – those people are definitely included in the Bible for a purpose — to give us hope that we can indeed turn our lives around and be used for Good! big hugs xox

  17. I clearly remember the day (in a Protestant church) that I knew what it meant to be forgiven of MY sins. What, Jesus went through to save ME. That it was an amazing act of love. That I could NEVER repay such a debt in any other way but to do my best to live as tight of a Christian life as I possibly could. Then I proceeded to wander from church to church looking for a road map on how to do just that. It wasn’t until I came to the Orthodox church and converted, that I finally found what I was looking for. Some psychologists are finally catching up to Christianity and understanding that sometimes, evil is evil and not a psychosis. That real evil exists in the world. I believe it is dangerous to overlook such beliefs as outdated or superstitious. I’ve seen too much to think there is only/always a clinical explanation for what is going on. Sometimes it’s just weird spiritual “stuff” that needs to be dealt with in a spiritual (read: Proper Christian) manner. Jesus did not tell, Mary M. “Go to a psychologist and talk about your mother.” He dealt with the thing as it was… a real THING that needed to be addressed directly.
    I am so thankful you were able to get rid of that “thing”, Cara. God is SO good, loving, and merciful!

    1. Isn’t that feeling just absolutely heavenly, literally! Like nothing else in the entire world. life changing to say the least. Thank you so much for sharing your story. You’re right – there is evil out there, but Praise God that He has overcome the world!!! big big big hugs to you xox

  18. Honestly, so many people in the New Testament gives hope. Jesus was able to use tax collectors, a zealot, a woman possessed by demons, and even a murderer (Saul/Paul) for some amazing things.

    1. You’re so right about that Brendan! The Bible is full of those inspiring people we can strive to emulate! amen!! hugs xo

  19. Dear Caralyn,

    “But because you are not of the world, since I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. If you had anything in common with the world, the world would love you as one of its own. But you don’t have anything in common with the world. I chose you from the world, and that’s why the world hates you.” John 15:19

    Careful to remember humility and selflessness is what true serving of the Lord requires.

    Do you wish to speak with someone that the world or system rejected and tried to destroy by means of its many possessed agents and their extremely hostile actions doing great harm to person and property. Actually attacked on several fronts by diabolical forces through Satan’s minions here on earth, the same forces and sorts that attack our President! I know from whence i speak.

    Most fitting is that Mary Magdalene may have been a destitute person with no purpose lost and wandering aimlessly in the streets and her afflictions could have been any number of human conditions but her seeking the light and knowledge of truth from Jesus is what gave her life true purpose and meaning as she then on and served His will.

    We must remember the servant can’t serve two masters.

    Also we all must remember that we are fallen and in the fallen world where Satan has his time until the Second Coming; therefore none of us is safe from falling prey to his many lying designs to snare and trap God’s own, as well we should take care to realize that demons are far more intelligent than humans. This battle ensues until we leave this life so one must remain totally vigilant as once I was lost and sinned then was delivered from my stumbling only to be tricked again into sin. There is much trickery at work some very obvious and in your face but most is very subtle and truly deceptive; that is why I despise all forms of deception or such people, and I’ve grown to recognize these pitfalls that perhaps Mary Magdalene could not or would not until she met Jesus and really began to know Him.

    I assure you it’s going to get a lot worse before this world will claim any true victory over the evil one!

    “In the same way continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippians 2:12

    Brother in Christ Jesus,
    Lawrence Morra

    1. You’re right about that, Lawrence — Jesus gave her life purpose and she followed His will. And amen – we can’t have two masters. Thank you for this response! hugs xo

  20. Dear Caralyn,

    I realized I made a typo excluding a work in the message which I correct here.

    Most fitting is that Mary Magdalene may have been a destitute person with no purpose lost and wandering aimlessly in the streets and her afflictions could have been any number of human conditions but her seeking the light and knowledge of truth from Jesus is what gave her life true purpose and meaning as she then went on and served His will.

    Thanks be to God. Our Lord, Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ!

    Brother in Christ,
    Lawrence Morra

      1. Dear Caralyn,

        It wasn’t me that wanted or planned to emphasize that paragraph with the most appeal to you, but then I did do that didn’t I, did my mistake turn out to be, not one at all, by His will.

        Gotcha covered! 😀👌

        Lawrence

  21. Another amazing post. You have given so many such a beautiful metaphorical, scriptural grounded vision of hope and the tools they can use to get their lives back on track, no matter the disease, addiction or problem they face. Bravo! So well done!

    1. Thank you so much Sandman! Oh gosh, you’re kind to say that. Amen! Nothing is too far gone for God! hugs ox

      1. haha gotcha!! I appreciate it so much!! have a great Tuesday! hugs xo

  22. Everything Jesus did and does in intentional. He planned it when he appeared to Mary Magdalene first after his resurrection and gave her the task of telling the disciples. For all eternity she is the first person to see Jesus after his resurrection. Jesus bestowed that honor upon the woman he rescued from seven demons. There is a message there about how completely Jesus restores. 🙂

    1. Your’re so right about that — His ways are ALL intentional!! So so true!! He completely restores! big hugs xo

  23. Wow. That is crazy! I also believe that many of the things we go through can be spiritual warfare too. I just got done reading Revelation 20, where satan gets forever thrown into “the lake of burning sulfur” forever. he knows his time is short, and that is why there is such warfare happening– he wants to steal, kill and destroy before his end. Interesting how my devotional time is relevant to this post.

    Also, were you born again when you had that moment in outpatient? the enemy cannot inhabit a person sealed by the Holy Spirit (a good explanation of that is here: https://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/don_stewart_61.cfm).

    Anyways, thank you for this post! It was very needed!

    1. Thank you so much. You’re right about that – spiritual warfare is a real thing. He’s a thief, absolutely. That moment at inpatient was really powerful. I was born again during baptism, but it was definitely a breakthrough moment

  24. WOW, fabulous post! Thank you for sharing about this woman whom Jesus elevated and honored. We all have a “story”, past issues of some kind or other, but we are so loved by the Lord who redeemed, and restores us daily. God bless you!

    1. Hi Fleur! Thank you so much for this wonderful response. You’re so right about that! He redeems and restores!! Hugs and love xox

  25. I mostly drop the saint when I think of these people in the story. I try to remove the distance. And for most of the people I hear preaching, I sense the blindness of ORIGIN in the stories passed along. There is this significance of HOME in my life. There are so many prejudice which begin at home, over issues of equality, on matters of power and how it is wielded. So your friend Mary is from Magdala – what do you even know about her village on the Sea of Galilee. The name Magdala meant “tower.”

    Smithsonian magazine had a story on your friend Mary who has became the embodiment of Christian devotion, defined as repentance. For centuries, most obsessively revered, yet in one age after another her image was reinvented. If you ever read the da Vinci Code. Mary is “only elusively identified in Scripture, which has served as a scrim onto which a succession of fantasies has been projected.”

    Home. Dust. Culture, of origin. And washing of feet. Yes, mostly I drop the saint when I think of these people in the story who are as real as me. Obsessive as I am. washing my feet.

    1. You’re right that they are as real as me. The saints had struggles and trials and just like us. And yet God used them to do great things. So they can be our role models and they can join us in prayer to God. That’s how I see it. 🙂 so glad you stopped by. Hugs and love xox

      1. I would respectively disagree with the previous comment. You shouldn’t drop the word “saint” when talking about believers in the past, just as we shouldn’t drop it in context to ourselves. Just because the definition of this word has been changed from it’s original intention doesn’t mean we have to abide by that standard. A true believer takes the word of God as their standard and one of the indisputable articles of the faith (Jude 3), not an article from a magazine or best selling book; Has not God made the wisdom of the word foolish? (1 Cor. 1:18-25). Paul said “greet every saint” (Phil. 4:21), “the called saints” (1 Cor. 1:2) and “To the saints in Colossae” (Col. 1:2). There are over 75 usages of the term in the bible clearly showing all who believe are saints. This Mary isn’t “just our friend”, she is our sister in the Lord! Now I wonder what the real source of someone denigrating a fellow believer is….let me think….

  26. You’re are preaching little beauty! 👏🏻 I agree that all enslaving bondages are demonically sourced, and only through the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ can one be set free-you and I were! 🙏 Just came back from my first trip to NYC late Sunday night-delayed flight from La Guardia. Thought of you and of a couple NYC travel vloggers (that were very helpful) when I was there. I especially thought of you at Saint Patrick’s! 😇 Would of loved to have met you!! Please pray that I can continue to blog my heart/message consistently (using your blogging tips e-book😉) ! TY!! ❤️

    1. Awww thank you so much!! I will definitely keep you in my prayers!! And amen – Jesus sets us free! I’m so touched that you would think of me while you were in NYC! Isn’t St. Patrick’s just gorgeous after they restored the marble and the columns?! Hugs and love xox

  27. Thank you for this authentic post and for your beautiful display of faith. If it weren’t for the treasures and gifts of our Universal Church, on my own I would not have the strength to keep on keeping on.

    1. Thank you so much 🙂 I agree – we are very blessed to have a community of faith to walk the journey with us. Hugs and love xox

  28. Mary is truly inspiring because she, more than most, is proof positive that no one is beyond the reach of Jesus’ loving, forgiving and merciful arms. Absolutely no one. Not even me, wretched sinner that I am.

    1. You’re so right about that Rollie!! No one is beyond His arms!!! Hugs and love xox

  29. I think it’s interesting how you mentioned that you starving yourself was a form of spiritual warfare because I dealt with the same problem except that I was the opposite. I used to use food as comfort and at one point I had to pray and ask God to help me with the problem as I had failed to get over it by myself. Great post. Be blessed!🥰

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your story, Emerance. I’m so glad that God has delivered you to healing too!! Hugs and love xox

  30. Beautiful tribute to our Lord Jesus Christ, first and foremost, and then to this woman of such great faith and loyalty to our Savior. I believe that every woman, in some way, can identify with her.
    God’s Blessings to you.

    1. Thank you so much 🙂 I agree – we can all see a bit of ourselves in her! Such a powerhouse of biblical femininity!! Hugs and love xox

  31. Thank you for leaving a like on my blog post about Anne Lamott. I hope it left you with lessons. And please do follow me to read more about my ruminations (because I am just new here in WordPress, hehe).

  32. Yes, you’re right. Jesus Christ has not come to condemned the world but to convict the world. (Jn.3:17) A sinner today can become a valuable asset tomorrow. Paul the rascal became a valuable asset. God is wonderful. Thanks for sharing this post.

    1. Thanks Chris – yes – God is able to turn our lives around no matter what! He is SO wonderful! Hugs and love xox

    1. You’re so right! No one is hopeless! Thanks Clara for stopping by 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  33. Such truth in this post. Jesus is all about restoration, raising us up from our depleted selves and giving us new life. The Ezekiel passage resonates with me as well as this post. I can very much identify with dry bones being given new life as my therapist and doctor nurtured me through PTSD and depression. Today my faith is stronger as I experience new life in Christ.

    1. Thanks so much friend 🙂 you’re absolutely right – ALL about restoration!! So glad it hit home with you 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  34. Loved this! Jesus doesn’t leave us as we are – he changes us for the better, and is with us through the process 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Becky! I’m so glad this resonated with you! you’re so right – He is with us every single step of the way! hugs xo

    1. Thanks so much Amanda 🙂 oh yes! The Bible is full of inspiring women that we can look up to! I don’t think that’s a coincidence 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  35. I do not know where they have laid Him.
    The stone is taken away from the tomb.
    Oh! They have taken Him away!
    Oh! Where is He?

    Disciples came and saw the empty tomb
    But went away so soon to their own homes.
    They’re satisfied with just the facts.
    But where’s my Lord?

    Where is He, my Jesus?
    Where is He, my Beloved?
    Where is He Whom my soul doth love?
    Jesus, my Love, I just want You.

    My heart is broken from my deepest need.
    Don’t ask me, angels, why I’m weeping.
    Nothing but Jesus fills my inner being.
    Oh! Where’s my Love?

    Someone is standing right behind me.
    It’s just the gardener I can barely see.
    Sir, if you carried Him away…
    Oh! Where is He?

    Where is He my Jesus?
    Where is He my Beloved?
    Tell me where you have laid Him
    And I’ll carry Him away, I’ll carry Him away.

    And then I heard a voice say, “Mary.”
    That sweetest voice that penetrated me.
    It is the voice of my Beloved,
    Jesus, my Love.

    I have found my Jesus!
    I have found my Beloved!
    I have found Whom my soul doth love,
    Jesus, my love, I just love You!

    But Jesus told me not to touch Him yet.
    He must ascend first to the Father
    And to My Father and your Father
    To My God and your God.

    Go and tell My brothers,
    I ascend to the Father
    To My Father and your Father,
    And My God and your God, go tell My brothers.

    *not my original hymn, but seemed relevant to share

  36. I love this post! Mary Magdalene truly does have an amazing testimony! I am so blessed to serve my Lord. He is good, and His faithfulness endures forever!! 🌻🌻

    1. Thanks so much Taylor! I agree – a powerful story of redemption! Hugs and love xox

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