Uncomfortable Christianity

I have never listened to the sound of my own voice more than I have in the last several weeks.

This coming Saturday, the 20th, I am going to be speaking at the 1:38 Women’s Conference in Erie, Pennsylvania. And one of the ways I prepare for my hour speech, is that I record myself giving the talk on my voice notes, and then listen to it several times per day – while I’m running, while I’m cooking/cleaning/running errands. So let’s just say, I’ve gotten my fair share of my own pipes for the next decade.

But I’ve gotta tell ya – the timing of this talk, and the preparation leading up to it – in conjunction with Lent, it has really given me a profoundly deeper meaning to these 40 days of fasting and sacrifice as a way to join in Jesus’ suffering, preparing us for Christ’s Passion and Resurrection on Easter.

You see, having to listen to my talk twice a day…it’s not some jovial stand up routine. It’s not like I’m listening to Kristen Wiig do a comical retelling of some hilarious hijinks she witnessed at a supermarket or something on SNL. No – this is the testimony of my life. It is reliving the pain and suffering I went through – and my loved ones went through – during my anorexia. It is an emotionally gripping talk that frankly, is difficult to give.

Every day since Lent began, I have revisited that place, not once, but twice a day, in preparation for this speaking engagement – which I am so excited and humbled to be co-headlining.

But the thing that has been so powerful to have my mind be so consumed on during this Lent, is not just the suffering…but Jesus’ rescue and redemption from it. That is what hits me over and over as I’m going through this talk – the incredible gift that is Jesus’ redemption and forgiveness from all of the deception and manipulation and lies I was consumed by during my anorexia. I never fully appreciated the magnitude and love of Jesus’ death on the Cross, until I realized that my eating disorder put Him there.

My sin. My lies. My destruction and all the horrible things that accompany an eating disorder – they were on the Cross. That is what He died to save: me. And you.

And this daily reflection of that, as we’re leading up to that most holy day: Easter, when we celebrate in humble gratitude His coming to earth, taking on our sins, and – out of immeasurable love – saving us from death through His death — it has given me this renewed appreciation that I am so grateful for.

Yesterday, I was watching Mass online with my special gentleman, and the second reading hit especially close to home with me, given my current closeness with my own story of destruction, forgiveness and redemption. And it is this:

From Eph 2- “God, who is rich in mercy, because of the great love He had for us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, brought us to life with Christ.”

That was me: dead in my transgression, and Jesus absolutely rescued and redeemed me from it, bringing me quite literally back to life.

What I have walked away with this Lent, is a renewed appreciation for how much God loves me and you. How deep and personal that love goes. How unwavering. How forgiving and healing that love is. And if we have any doubt, all we need to do is look upon the Cross, to see our Savior hanging there for me. For you.

We still have a couple more weeks left of Lent. And I’d like to invite you to join me in reflecting on your own story. Your past. That history that you might not always love remembering, because there might be pain there. Or loss. Or shame. Or guilt. Or anger. And I’d invite you to just go there with a heart that is open to receiving where God played a role in your healing. A role in getting you through those difficult seasons. Moments where, looking back now in 20/20 hindsight, you can fully see His love playing out.

Because I’m here to tell you – this exercise doing just that with my own past, it has made the meaning and purpose of Lent not only more powerful, but immensely more personal than ever before.

After all, this Lenten season is the Gospel boiled down to a single sentence: For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believed in Him might not perish, but have eternal life.

And I’d be willing to bet, if you look hard enough, you’ll see the Gospel is written into your story too, just like mine.

What a love story, indeed.

If you’re interested in joining the live streamed conference and listening to my talk on Saturday, you can join here: https://www.138women.com

“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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115 responses to “Uncomfortable Christianity”

  1. Wonderful post… I’ll be praying that your talk goes well and that many will be blessed by what you have to share…God bless.

    • Thank you so much Mark! Oh my gosh that’s so wonderful of you. I really appreciate your prayers! Means a lot! Hugs and love xox

  2. Good read, interesting perspective. Similar topic: I’ve spent the last two days working on my mother’s yard; she has 12 flowerbeds, several rose bushes. Needless to say the thorns worked me over and HOW. I commented to my Mom that I have no place to complain as these thorns are wimpy in comparison to the crown that the guards placed on Jesus’ head. Moral: Thank God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit everyday for the “graces” we have. Hugs and Love. You will do outstanding at the conference; however, I will hold you in my thoughts and prayers. 🤗 & ❤️.

    • Thank you so much HJ! Oh wow what a gift you’re giving your mother! And wow – that is so true. Nothing like the crown of thorns! Powerful to keep that perspective. Thank you for your prayers! Much appreciated! Love the emojis by the way! Haha 🤗💛🤗💛🤗💛🤗

      • Well, the truth be told; Almost 3 years ago, Mom, 80yr now, tore a hip muscle (gluteus medius, middle of three at hip). During dr visits located 3 bad vertebrae. Short story 2 yrs ago Jan & March 3 surgeries and recovery. Just after the fall, as she became bedridden, I abandoned my residency and took a room at hers and became the primary caregiver; took leave from work until she became somewhat mobile. Now I hang around to help; she’s recovered as much as she will and gets around with a cane (walker for long trips and wheelchair when needed). We have always been close and are traveling partners; it works well.

      • Oh my gosh that’s terrible, I’m so sorry to hear that. She’s lucky to have you 🙂

    • Thank you Laurel! You’re so right – he finds a way to make goodness come from every situation! Amen to that! Hugs and love xox

  3. Is this the same gig you had to cancel last year? What time on Saturday? Do you know if it’ll be recorded and available on the website if I miss it?

    I’m very glad you got this engagement! What an opportunity to spread the Gospel, inspire people who also struggle, and get your speaking re-started!

    Your talk here was incredibly dynamic! I know that conference will get a lot of hearing you! Schedule a lot of time after to talk to everyone! I’m sure many will want to see you there as they did here.

    Safe travels! I’ll be praying for you!

    • Hi Jeff! Yes! It is that same conference! I’m not sure what time on Saturday but I’ll let you know! And yes! It will be available! Thanks so much Jeff – I couldn’t have done this without you making Memphis happen!! I am just so grateful for that opportunity. Not only was a blessing, it was FUN! And it was even more FUN to meet you and your family!! My mom and I still talk about it! Haha hope your week is off to a great start! Hugs and love to you and your girls! Xox

      • It was a great time for us too! Hillary tells me she’s been enjoying your blog lately and enjoying it. My best to your mom!! I was so excited to meet “Mrs. BBB” in person!! We’re all well. Great week to you too!

      • Oh that’s awesome!!! I’ll definitely pass that along 🙂 she’s buzzing with excitement for the big move!

  4. Beautiful and yes, I traveled back in time with a heavy heart, but so happy that God redeems and loves us no matter what. He molds us by our experiences into what He desires.

    • Thank you so much Angie! Amen to that – He is the ultimate redeemer! And brings good out of everything! Hugs and love xox

  5. Wonderful news! Your witness to love is powerful and I think you connect with a vast variety of people by your straight talk and honest sharing. Truly a blessing.

    I’ll say a prayer for your courage.

    Your voice to the rest of us is very soothing. Don’t worry about that.

    • Thank you so much Gerry! I so appreciate your kind words and prayers! I’ll certainly need the courage! Haha Your words were soothing to my soul tonight – thank you with my whole heart! Hugs and love xox

  6. Hey C! So excited you’re going to get to speak Saturday, after they had to cancel last year. Wow, hard to believe it’s been a whole year. Talk about prep time. 🙂 But now that folks have the remote thing down, perhaps God will open many more opportunities for you to speak that way. Have been and will be praying for you through Saturday, and I know you will be AWESOME!

    By the way, has He given you any more contact opportunities with that young lady from the laundry room? Continuing to pray about that too.

    Be sure to let us know how it goes Saturday! 🤗💛

    • Hi Kenneth!! Oh gosh thank you so much! Yeah me too – finally full circle! Haha yeah I’ve had a couple extra minutes to cram 😉 hehe I am very grateful for your prayers! And on the laundry friend front…unfortunately not. Thanks for the prayers on that front too! Hope your week is off to a great start! Hugs and love xox

  7. Lovely post and God bless you 🙏 I have recently read this by Alan Watts and It resonated with me;

    “How is it possible that a being with such sensitive jewels as the eyes, such enchanted musical instruments as the ears, and such fabulous arabesque of nerves as the brain can experience itself anything less than a god.”

    “Jesus Christ knew he was God. So wake up and find out eventually who you really are. In our culture, of course, they’ll say you’re crazy and you’re blasphemous, and they’ll either put you in jail or in a nut house (which is pretty much the same thing). However if you wake up in India and tell your friends and relations, ‘My goodness, I’ve just discovered that I’m God,’ they’ll laugh and say, ‘Oh, congratulations, at last you found out.”

    • Thank you so much! Oh wow what powerful quotes! Thank you for sharing those with me! Hugs and love xox

    • Oh gosh thank you so much Eric for your prayers! Greatly greatly appreciated!! Hugs and love xox

  8. Blessings on your speech! That’s awesome; you’ll be engaging and so encouraging.
    Also, I really like the new image on your blog front! The artist did an amazing job capturing your spirit. ☺️♥️

    • Thank you so much Hannah!! I appreciate your prayers and encouraging words! I’m. Healthy mixture of nervous and excited! Haha thank you! I will let her know! 🙂 have a wonderful evening! Hugs and love xox

  9. Before we married Pat wrote: “there seems to be quite a bit of harmony between our personalities.” What did that mean? The healthiest way two people can interact with each other is to be close and at the same time to be truly interdependent. This is where two people, actually like each other and become involved with each other, but with neither sacrificing themselves or compromising their values. What they have is a balanced relationship, and unfortunately it is not all that common. It develops into what we had, Quiet Love. Quiet love primarily means feeling safe and comfortable, experiencing new stages of life, growing personally and as a couple, and supporting each other. Patricia and I were lucky enough to discover that quiet, intense love that is basic to life itself! We had the eyes to see and the words to tell the truths that are most real to each other.

    • Oh wow, thank you so much for sharing that – what a powerful thing to read from your love. You’re so right – it is two independent people, choosing to come together and live in harmony with one another. gosh i love that so much. so so much. i always am so inspired by the love you and Patricia shared and still share. it is beautiful beyond words. Hugs and love xox

      • Thank you; glad you liked my comment. I loved how Pat wrote me loved poems. Here is one of my favourites:

        12th Anniversary Poem (fragments) 1981

        I know the scent and shape of you:
        I know you all, yet not at all.
        I linger with a connoisseur’s delight
        over a contour of bone, a texture of skin,
        gloating over treasures of silk and ivory
        that are mine alone,
        and yet no-one’s but yours.
        For you and I are so entwined
        that we can read each other’s mind
        at times, a simple exercize.
        Then comes the stumble of surprise
        when, reaching out in haste, I find
        the stranger self behind your eyes.
        Far apart upon the lawn,
        two tall trees confront each other
        never to touch, ever alone:
        yet beneath the grass and stone
        intertwined their roots have grown,
        so intimately webbed together,
        neither one can tell his own.
        So with us: which flatly proves
        futility of arguments
        On which is which, and whose is whose.

  10. What a fantastic post and beautiful challenge that I will take you up on. I will post it when my thoughts are together for God’s glory always. Beautiful! Love you as always, treasured friend. Hugs! XO😃♥️

  11. What a fantastic opportunity! Public speaking is never easy and being your worst critic only makes practice even harder. On the one hand, having poise and polish makes you look confident, but at the same I know you will be authentic too.

    • thank you so much! yeah, i am really excited! i appreciate your words of encouragment! Hugs and love xox

    • thank you so much Channique! 🙂 I appreciate you stopping by! Hugs and love xox

    • aw, you’re kind to say that. thank you so much! have an awesome day! Hugs and love xox

  12. Yes!! What a powerful read that gives so much inspiration. What an awesome testimony and testament to the power of Christ in our lives. Thanks friend and your light will shine wherever you have to present. Blessings

    • aw thank you so much! 🙂 I’m so glad this resonated with you. amen to that – His presence is life changing! 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  13. Great photo of you. They say eyes are the windows to the soul well you clear are one happy, contented, highly spiritual young women. Love reading your blog. Great to see you doing so much practise for the speech, the more practise the better it will be. Best of luck on Saturday. 🙂

    • aw thank you so much! gosh, what a kind thing to say! 🙂 yes! lots and lots of practice for sure! glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

    • awww, thank you Kenneth, I appreciate it! hahah have an awesome day! Hugs and love xox

  14. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of what Lent and Easter are really all about – our own sin that put Jesus on that cruel cross. We get busy in the Easter festivities and let the magnitude of that slide. I am with you, with a renewed appreciation for the greatest sacrifice ever given – and for ME. I will be praying for you Saturday! Godspeed <3

    • Thank you Mindy! Yes! He redeems us all! what a beautiful thing to celebrate! and gosh, thank you for your prayers! it means a lot! Hugs and love xox

  15. “And I’d be willing to bet, if you look hard enough, you’ll see the Gospel is written into your story too, just like mine.” What a lovely way of putting it! Thank you. And thank you, God, for your healing and saving grace.

    • aw, thank you so much, Penny! God has been so gracious with me, giving me a second chance. I am so grateful for His healing and saving grace indeeed! have a wonderful day, my friend! Hugs and love xox

  16. What a great opportunity to build up the body of Christ, and to let God turn the ashes of your past into the beauty of His grace!

    • thank you so much Mick! Yes! His strength is seen best in my weakness! 🙂 hope you have an awesome day! Hugs and love xox

    • thank you so much! yes, His Word really is! it is powerful and so loving! Hugs and love xox

    • Thank you so much Shauna! I’m so glad this resontated with you. and gosh, i so appreciate your prayers!! Hugs and love xox

    • thank you so much for your prayers and kind words! It really means a lot! Hugs and love xox

  17. Dear Caralyn, I always love your blogs for their honesty and openness. (I also love seeing pictures of you with your “special gentleman.” He’s as handsome as you are lovely. 😉)
    When Father says He tosses our sins into the sea and remember them no more (Micah 7:19; Jeremiah 31:34), it is not as though His mind could actually “forget,” but He simply chooses not to think about them. In the same way, we must not live in the condemnation or history of our sins, but sometimes it is good to remember so that we can avoid the error of our previous ways (Galatians 5:16-23)
    “God did not keep bad things from happening to God himself and there is no darkness into which he has not descended. He knows the texture and taste of everything I most fear.” (Tish Harrison Warren, Prayer in the Night)

    • aw, thank you! haha yes – he’s quite a handsome fella 🙂 thanks for saying that! you’re so right, and what a comforting truth. He CHOOSES to see the good in us! that’s a great reminder for how we should also live! 🙂 so glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  18. “This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long.”
    Keep sharing your testimony. You encourage others on to faith and service.

  19. You precious, precious girl! Thank you for sharing and expressing your understanding of what God has done for us. No matter how much we try to stretch our imaginations we can never fathom the depth of Gods great love, His redeeming love is beyond all measure. Bless You!

    • Hi Veronica! thank you so much for your kind words! you’re spot on – His love and redemption and mercy are beyond all measure! amen! what a gift! Hugs and love xox

  20. Caralyn,

    Thank you for sharing
    That’s exciting –

    You prepare so well (on something emotionally challenging… 😮), and you will be fine…

    (I will miss, due to the timezone diff.)

    • Hi Peter. I have always, and do denounce white supremacy. what happened in Atlanta is truly TRULY terrible. I have actually just written a post about this very topic i’m publishing tonight.

  21. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

  22. On the one hand we do need to personalise the death but we also need to understand that his sacrifice is the basis for salvation of everyone living and dead. Repentance and action are required. Share the truth of the bible message and on March 27 after sundown remember that Jesus concluded the covenant that assured us all of his role as our redeemer.

    • thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this. amen – repentance is required! Hugs and love xox

    • aw thank you so much!!! i’ll be posting the talk on Thursday! 🙂 thanks for sharing in my excitement! Hugs and love xox

  23. Thank you so much. Family is good to have, God continue to bless you with your family. My family have all left and I don’t know why, the 4th generation that are left seem to not care for me, but I pray daily for them. The family of God is my family, and my son and grandson. Jesus has never left me all these years.

    • thank you so much for sharing your heart on this, and for sharing your story. my heart is with you friend. praying that you can reconnect! Hugs and love xox

    • Oh my goodness, you’re so kind to say that, Jorge! thank you so much! Hugs and love xox

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