Sarah Markley
About the Author

I'm the mother of two little girls, the wife of an amazing husband who'd rather play the guitar than anything else and I love to write. I spend my weekends watching my daughters ride horses and play soccer. I blog daily and my greatest wish is to see women healed...

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
Recent Posts

Reader Interactions


  1. Sarah,

    I know this push-pull and have also experienced the refreshing feeling of being stripped down to the core to just See Him (and him). As much as I crave that simple life for always, it can’t be, and I think it’s in the living the chaos–the whirl and twirl of life–when he wants us to Trust Him. He allows the chaos and distractions to come in and invade that quiet nothingness of just-Us times–it’s training, it’s true training. It’s hard, yes. But, even that is Grace.

    Rich blessings as you navigate the living, Sarah…

  2. Well, its just me and the kids, no spouse but when the kids go to their Dad’s house and I need to retreat that’s what I do. Retreat. I like to go to parks and stay for hours on end, no music, no phone-unless its the kids calling me-a journal, my Bible and a pen. There is something about sitting out in the open, in the trees listening to God’s music from the leaves blowing in the wind, the birds singing, squirrels chattering and water lapping on the shore of a lake if I’m lucky enough to get there. My mind just opens up, my heart softens and I listen. If I’m in a really bad place then I will barricade myself in the house and do some serious one on one time with God. When I do this I usually come out of it a different person–good right? Thats the point!

    Day to day things I find time each day to pray and I am slowly working through a Bible study–Believing God by Beth Moore.

  3. my personal retreat – running. best time i get with god, hands down. with my husband? we take whatever time we can grab – a weekend away or just a dinner, we love to be just us. the older the kids get, the more time that is, too. i like that you call it the stripped down version.

  4. Mark and I try to go to breakfast every Saturday morning. It’s often the highlight of my week (and sugary pastries help too!). Sarah, I love your heart for relationship and meaningful connection that shines through in all you do, in the beautiful woman you are.

  5. God Can You Hear My Prayer? I Want To Get Right With God. I Will Overcome & Soar.

  6. Beautiful! My husband and I have really gotten lost in the day to day of caring and providing for kids. We just recently broke away and went to the Farmers Market and it was so simple and so lovely. We need to do more of that. Same with my relationship with the Lord. I need to steal away daily and just spend time with Him. Great post!

    • so interesting you posted this. 1st, i love the farmers market. 2nd i was just at one yesterday and i specifically thought how fun it would be with just me and my husband.

  7. I love this reminder that we all need this, those times to just be with loved ones and enjoy the pleasures of life and time to be with God and be silent in his presence. I love how you call it revisiting the stripped down version of your soul, I’ve never thought of it like that, but it’s a great way to describe it.

  8. Well we are now empty nesters and we still make time to get away together. My family laughs when I tell them that we need to get away together…and they make comments like “don’t you get enough of each other now that the kids are gone?” My response…NO NEVER! I feel exactly as you have described it here…and we all have distractions in our daily lives regardless of thie physical presence. Lovely…thanks for sharing. Fondly, Roberta

  9. For my husband and I there hasn’t been a “just us” time. He came along after a failed marriage and two children, and rescued me. We try to get away several times a year. This is hard as the adult children have come home, with children of their own, still have two teenagers along with that. We have, and will continue, to repeat our first date…a college football game, 21 seasons and counting. We discovered a small-town fall fest in TN, a now yearly tradition for 10 years. These are our times, and I certainly treasure them! I love the reminder of how I also, even more so, need to carve out an “us time” with God….thank you!

  10. So wonderful and so true. It’s so easy to let all of the stuff pile on and simply forget. With 3 kids now, my husband and I have been “escaping” more often, just the two of us. Because with each child we have lost a little more of “us.” The same goes for my God. With each child, I lose a little more of my relationship with Him because I let the stuff pile too high.

  11. Sarah- Bless your sweet heart for sharing this post. My husband and I have been married only a little over a year. We don’t have any kids yet. But it’s still so easy to get distracted. By all the social media, obligations, family/friends and this, that and the other. Last weekend, we spent it at home, just the two of us. We talked, we laughed, we hung out. We so enjoyed each other. There has been arguing and tears in the past, I guess it’s part of growing together? We always work it out. I think this will help when harder times come our way. When we pray together and keep God first, everything works out eventually.

  12. Wow! Lovely Sarah, I so enjoy your writing and your way with words. Sometimes that back-to-us feeling doesn’t happen when we just get away for dinner, it seems to take more, like shedding layers one at a time; allowing ourselves to unwind and let down our guard. I haven’t done that with the Lord for a while, thank you for reminding me How to get back to my first love…. God Bless, Christina

    • that’s right. sometimes it is shedding layers one at a time. i feel like it takes us a few days to really get to the point where we feel like we are “away.” thank you for your comment!! =)

  13. After having my baby girl this past year, I felt as if I never had a moment to myself. I was missing my time with God. My time to digest the world around me and look at where I was spiritually. So I found a chair and stuck it in the corner of my bedroom. It’s my praying chair, a chair I come to, even for a moment, to be quiet and talk to my Jesus. I hope that I talk to him on and off throughout each day, but this is a special, intentional place I go to as a retreat. It keeps me sane. It keeps me connected.

    • i love that meg. praying chair. it’s hard being a mama to a newborn, whether you have older children or just the one. so glad that you have been intentional about retreat in such a difficult season.

  14. Oh, how envious I am of you. I really mean that. I miss my husband most during the summer months. When the world is teeming with life and beating to the pulse of “family”. I see happy children holding hands with dads. Moms reading on a beach chair. Laughter surrounds me…..and I have to muster up a fake laugh just to remind myself that I am here. That my two girls are here. That God loves me. It’s hard, though. I wish he had wanted to work it out. Instead of spiraling away, like a pinwheel, towards “other”.

    • I know how you feel when you say you have to muster up a fake laugh to be reminded that you are even part of things. I’ve been there too. It hurt so bad to see the typical family unit when I would be out with my kids and it was just me. I did get past that point of thinking I was wrong in keeping with my decision to have him leave since he would not work on things. I’ve even become ‘ok’ with just the 3 of us doing things. But, now at this point I really want to have that ‘someone’ in my life. I want to be able to have a partner in life to share things with and do things with. What I want most is a man who will pray with me. Seems like a simple request doesn’t it? I’m waiting on that day!

      • I, too, simply want a man who will pray with me. It isn’t a simple, easy thing to find, though. You would probably be shocked to learn that my ex was a minister. But his faith was high-brow intellectual one. All the best ivy league divinity schools and yet no praying with me.

        But I want to tell you that you will find someone again if you believe in it. I believe in it for me too. It has been three years since he moved out. One year since the finalized divorce papers. I haven’t been ready, but am now. I pray about it each day. I also visualize what it will be like to find that person.

        I will keep you in my prayers too.

  15. All too often I push aside the needs of my family, the needs of my husband, and my desperate need for God. And those are really the only things that matter. What if we lived life according to our values? Imagine how much happier we would be. Since I have started to do so, oh my word, life is so much more fulfilling. I have time to breathe and time to be used by God more effectively.

    • i love that janna. what you are talking about, really, is living life with intention. weighing things against what you believe is important. what a great lesson to teach! thank you!

  16. I retreat with my husband. We’ve been married for almost 6 years. We’ve just entered our 40’s. We have a motorcycle that is our “retreat.” We’re a blended family with 2 “adult” aged children & 2 teenagers. Needless to say this can go from being a whole lot of fun to a whole lot stress! 😉

  17. Loved this! Absolutely beautiful! Need to work on getting away with my hubby! I need it so badly…I just started going walking/jogging with God in the early morning…peaceful, beautiful, necessary!

  18. This really helped me a lot, even I wish to get away with my best friend sometimes, but we’re still “young” in the eyes of our parents etc, I guess the day will come when we can do that, It really does help you discover a lot. I can relate to this a lot. I love your blogs, this was really insightful and thought provoking. Once again great points about your life experiences that has taught me so much. God bless you Sarah.

  19. I need some get-away time with my hubby. We need to re-learn how to put us back on the list, instead of last. Thank you for sharing this beautiful post!

  20. I dont know what to think or say. I feel a little bit confused. Sometimes I feel God is telling me to let go and move on. And some other time I hear stories like yours and beilive there is hipe for my broken marriage and that I just need to wait on Him. I pray each day asking Him to show me where I should be headed to and remembering He is in control. What I Am certain about is that this time of from my marriage is kind of my retreat to spend time with God, refresh my perspective and grow stronger in the Lord as I was devastated and overwhelmed. I was loosing my focus on Him as I battled each day with the enemy through my husband. God is wise!

    • Caro, i am so sorry for your pain and for your loss. i’m glad that you can find a way to grow stronger in Christ, even in the midst of your hurt. thank you so much for sharing this comment. and yes, God is wise! =)

  21. Ah yes, the cares of this life. They can be so draining. Even our 20-year old son is beginning to feel the pinch of those insistent cares that suppress and restrain all that is free and real about who we are. It’s so hard! Building times of refuge and renewal into our own lives with God and into our human relationships is important beyond description, especially in a world that moves so fast! Thank you for such a great reminder!!

  22. Sarah,
    Stripping down my life, craving simplicity and cutting out all the “noise” around me has been a near daily practice for months now. It’s taken a lot of focus and “checking in” with myself. Some days its a quick escape to the back of a coffee shop, other times its a more thought out day trip to the coast, and sometimes all I get is half an hour to curl up in my big comfy chair with my headphones or a book. Wherever it is, I know I can quickly invite Jesus and get that recharge that I need. Thanks for the reminder, I needed that today!

  23. Wow. Just visited your blog and viewed your video. What an incredible story. You are ministering to people everywhere. I plan to share this with someone in need of it right now. Thanks for your openess and honesty!

  24. I really enjoyed these posts, but find myself wondering if……sometimes it’s really hard being a single mom. Pray for me, I’m going to try and bring it back to the simple things in life and with Jesus.