About the Author

Angie is the proud wife of Todd Smith of Selah, and the blessed mommy to Abby, Ellie, Kate, Charlotte, and Audrey Caroline, who passed away the day she was born, April 7th, 2008. Angie was inspired to write Audrey's story, and began the blog www.audreycaroline.blogspot.com in honor of her. You...

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  1. I enjoyed learning about where I am and where I am going in Chapter 5. Gives you a perspective of life in general.
    Chapter 6 was SO needed. I loved the 3 main points that you bring to the table about what God tells us : (1) Love all. Please One. (2) Be who I’ve created you to be. (3) You are enough because I am enough in you.
    “You are already perfectly loved, and you only have to please the One who has already declared you a delight to his heart”. – This brings such freedom when we actually think on this and DO IT!!! This is an area that I find hard at times. It is so easy to try to worry about what others will think. This would mean we are living in fear which is not how God designed us to live.
    I identified VERY much with feeling the need to control internally. However, I’ve never really thought about how much of that control is driven again out of fear. I found the quote “Freedom only comes when we find security in Jesus, when we realize that life is hard but he is good and no matter what happens he’ll get us through it” to be another one that can bring such freedom. I have grown up in the church and can’t really remember my life without Christ but there are SO many times that I haven’t rested in His security and found myself trying to control out of my fear.

  2. I LOVED the love all. Please one. Statement. And the part about you don’t have to be perfect, because you are perfectly loved- WOW! I am so enjoying this book. It’s amazing 😉 God bless!

  3. I am a Settler. I am probably my own worst enemy. I take on new ideas just like an Explorer – knowing I’m being led by God. I can feel it. Then, when it comes to wrapping it up, going for broke, taking that big leap, I just circle around and circle around not doing anything, becoming a Settler. My husband thinks I’m afraid of success. I don’t know what it is. Not sure why I can just jump into the pool, eyes shut. I know there’s water in it because I’m the one that put it there…help me to know, Lord. Then, help me to act, moving forward to your divine plan for my life. I’m sorry I keep thwarting the good you have in store for me.

  4. […] Holly’s book makes for a great personal study or small group study.  The ladies at Bloom, an online book club, are offering video discussions.  Here is the link to the one on Chapter 5 & 6. […]

  5. These chapters were extremely powerful for me. I feel like I need to constantly “be in control” for fear that if I’m not, I’ll be to blame for things going wrong. For example, I worry about my family get hurt or killed and I feel sometimes like if I don’t worry about it I’ll become complacent and it will for sure happen. I’ve been challenged to completely change my thinking. Of course I knew that my thinking is wrong but I never found the proper tools to compat it. These chapters have helped me tremendously with the addition of slowly reading my way through Angie’s second book as well. I’m so thankful that Bloom inspired me to buy Holley’s book :).

  6. This book is a splendid resource for so many. I can think of a few sisters I want to buy and share these secrets with. The message of being enough in God’s eyes is something we all need to hear. I think we feel that somewhere we are always lacking thus the over care taking and trying to please others. Thank you for the opportunity of learning along with you all.

  7. It is a battle in my heart to check the motivation all the time. This “cleaning out my closet” can sometimes also be a legalistic way for me to process what God is doing me in my heart. It seems wise to take a deep breath and look at things through a lens that has passed through scripture. Praying that this will be my first criteria as I check out my motive. Thank you Ladies.

  8. Thank you for sharing the idea that I can have unsafe people in my life that I do not have to open my gate wide to them. This helped me gain a different perspective on dealing with certain people and gave me me permission to guard my heart towards those that are unsafe.

  9. Chapter 5 was moving but chapter 6 really spoke to me in so many areas! I am so thankful for all your insight and the 3 main points that were in the Chapter were so needed by me!

  10. I love what Holley said in the video about having a gate, not a wall…. like Angie, I have unsafe people in my circle, and this video gave me direction and wisdom. Thanks

    From the reading: The contrast between external & internal control was eye opening for me — I need to pray for more “God control.”

  11. I had trouble viewing the video on Sunday night. Not willing to wait it out. I was wondering about the control issue in Chapter 6. I really liked the comment on page 105, “And you are not responsible for the ungodly responses of others.”
    It seemed to me that I was alot on both of the charts about control. I have had to buffer my relationship with my husband due to some issues. In the meantime, I have been working on my relationship with God and getting that back where it needs to be. When I reach this chapter, I am wondering if I am trying to control things so that my daughter and I do not get hurt, or if I am trying to control things period. I am learning to let go and can calm myself most times, but with the insight from the chapter, I am questioning what I am suppose to be learning. Thanks!!

  12. Whew! What invigorating chapters. Chapter five was such a blessing in reminding me that God has us in the exact place He wants us to be if we’re seeking Him and His will. It’s so refreshing to be reminded that our journeys look different than anyone else’s (p. 79). I am always so quick to look at other people’s lives and wonder why I didn’t get married at that age, have kids that many months after marriage, get a job I love right out of college, etc. etc.

    The area about the “Promised Land” was convicting because I realized how quick I am to receive God’s blessings but then want to move on to the next thing. Like Jessica mentioned in the video, we can always get so bogged down by where we’re not, rather than fully appreciating and living in where God has us. This section helped me to see that my “Promised Land” is my husband. We got married last August 2011 after waiting almost two years. Those two years were hard because we so desperately wanted to be with each other – we were so thankful and joyful that God allowed it to happen when it did. I realized that we haven’t even been married a full year and I’m already worrying about jobs and wanting to have children! I was really able to stop and think about how blessed I am to just have my husband. I love him greatly and should dwell on the fact that God has given him to me, rather than always wanting to be where I’m not.

    Chapter 6 had so much, and I really related to it well. There was an issue I had with a family I was a nanny for this past fall. I was trying to meet their expectations and thought they were upset with me. Usually, I need to think through things before I approach someone. However, they sensed I wasn’t “happy” and basically forced me to talk right then because they like to just get things out in the open right away. Instead of working through it, like I wanted to, they told me I was quitting (they wouldn’t say they fired me). I was upset with how things ended because I don’t like ending on a bad note… even though I wasn’t satisfied with how things were going, I wanted to work through them, not give up. The top of page 105 caused me to really ask God to let this go (I’ve been replaying the scene in my head since it happened – trying to figure out how things could have gone differently). It also doesn’t help that I see the family in the grocery store… I’ve seen them twice and literally hide to avoid them because I’m ashamed of how things turned out.

    The end of the chapter also struck me because I, like Angie mentioned, have a family figure who is unsafe. Ever since I was a child I tried ignoring them, being short with them, until finally I just tried reaching out to them and loving them like Jesus. I thought things were going well at that point until they betrayed me, yet again. Their patterns of betrayal are unsafe and, unfortunately, I’ve had to go back to ignoring them – although not in the same, unforgiving way from when I was a child, but in a way as to try to keep myself self. I know that, ultimately, according to the book we need to seek security in Christ and not safety because anything can happen in this sinful world. However, I don’t believe it will do any good at the moment to actively communicate with this person until they are willing to take responsibility for their actions.

    I’m in a talkative mood tonight 🙂 It’d be great to have someone to talk to because I feel as though I could go on and on about these two chapters… which reminds me of another thing the chapters made me think of…

    Like I mentioned, my husband and I just got married seven months ago. We moved to a new town and are attending a new church. We’re both introverts, and it’s difficult to make friends. Sure, we get along with the other couples our age… but it’s hard to truly feel as though you fit in. While we get invited to planned activities, we never really have anyone to just hang out with or spontaneously do something with… I wish I had that. I know I could just ask someone to solve that problem – but it’s just so difficult… that insecure fear. I have a lot to learn and plenty of room to grow, that’s for sure 🙂

    Can’t wait for the next chapter!

    If anyone ever wants to talk, feel free to contact me through my page – I’d love to listen. 🙂

    • p.s. just to clarify my last paragraph about friends… I meant ask someone to hang out myself in order to solve that problem – not ask someone else to solve the problem for me hehe 🙂

  13. I LOVED these chapters and this videos! The section about not being perfect but being perfectly loved SO GREATLY touched my heart. <3 I also LOVE the explanation of "guarding" our hearts as a gate not a wall. I would TOTALLY buy that mug!!! :0) Love you, ladies!!! Thank you for ALL your inspiring words and videos!

  14. Sorry I fell behind…traveling all last week with my hubby (yay!!), the holiday (Easter) and then a little surgery (skin cancer, the not-so-bad-basal cell kind).
    WOW – God’s timing. Gotta love it. The whole concept of having my boundary as a GATE and not a WALL. So timely. I have been through counseling with issues with my past and how to deal with my father…this is a perfect tool for me to use.
    Thanks God for providing this for me TODAY. Last week I wouldn’t have applied it to this situation, but it was meant for me. today.

  15. I think sometimes we are wanting to be outwardly controlling because things in our life are so crazy e.g. addictions in the family, mental illnesses. Our natural response is to try to control what we can, because there is so much in our lives that is out of control. I agree with Holley that it is because of fear that we try to control. Some family situations are frightful indeed!
    Leaning heavily on God and letting go of the situation invariably leads to us getting better. Sometimes He leads us to a support group or counselling that helps us specifically with our family situation. The need to control can be a sign that we need a bit of help, and that’s okay.

  16. I have been struggling with the focus of these chapters recently. I feel like I know where I’m going, but I have gained new insight into the Egypt, encampment, setting out, and Promise Land experiences I am facing. I am also more aware that these areas are also seasons in my life, and I can’t rush them to get to a new phase. I need to be open to the lessons God is teaching me through them.

    Chapter 6 hit home, for me. I have been asking God to give me a friend who is more than a friend (not just my husband), someone to be transparent with about my walk with the Lord and the struggles I face as a mom of 2 young children. I feel like there are some women in the church who are safe people, but I don’t feel “worthy” of their friendship. Holley’s words were such an encouragement to me. We were not created to walk through this life alone. I am praying that the lies of my “worthiness” for friends will be overtaken with the truth of God’s word. THANK YOU FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT IN THIS CHAPTER!!!!!

  17. I liked the bit in chapter 5 about praising God and celebrating when you’re in the promised land in certain areas of your life, and the encouragement not to neglect Him when you’re there.

    Question about chapter 6: These ‘Unsafe’ people you talk about – how can we forget them? I say this because I have a family-member who brings up things in my past; gets angry; upsets me, and has me apologising for getting upset when really she should be apologising too. But how can I not love her? She’s not a Christian. If I consciously decide not to share stuff with her, won’t that alienate her and damage our relationship? I do love her lots and want to be close to her, even if sometimes she’s insensitive and it hurts. Why are you saying we should cut ourselves off from certain people? Surely God will help us to love everyone in our lives, and to deal with the hurt when it comes? Jesus didn’t cut Himself off from Judas Iscariot. He was one of the 12 closest people to Him.