About the Author

Bonnie Gray is the author of Sweet Like Jasmine, Whispers of Rest, wife, and mom to two boys. An inspirational speaker featured by Relevant Magazine and Christianity Today, she’s guided thousands to detox stress and experience God’s love through soul care, encouragement, and prayer. She loves refreshing your soul at...

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

Reader Interactions


  1. Bonnie,
    While I sit in the early quiet with darkness all around outside, I am drawn by your words into the peace and rest of being God’s beloved. For me, personally, I NEED this time alone in the morning to read and reflect on just who I am in God’s eyes. I, too, have had a painful journey to get to this place of feeling okay just as I am…but the journey was and still is, worth it. This week I was late on getting my blog post out. My own self imposed deadline hung like a noose around my neck. I realized that this is not where God wanted me to be…instead He wanted me to put the deadline aside and just be and abide in Him. Nothing I would have poured out would have been of any worth, had I not spent the time with Him first. Ironic, how I need to be reminded of this time and time again. Thank you so much for the beautiful reinforcement of this precept this morning. Your words help me to just be and breathe in His love.
    Blessings and thanks,

  2. Bonnie. These thoughts of yours have been my hazy thoughts of late. Hurrying from one network(ing) to another, anxious if I miss something, feeling behind when I know I have. With bloggesphering, how can we measure what’s enough? And why am I even caring? soul care, even for an off the charts extrovert like myself, is my first priority and it loses its savor in the crush. Then no one is served. Taking deep breaths. Thank you.

    • Sue, what touches your heart will touch ours… live and organic… splurge some soul goodness on you… creativity comes in extrovert and introvert flavors.. 🙂

  3. “The soul does not survive on successes and the soul cannot be fed with productivity or achievement.”

    Yes, so true. I am a driven, visionary person struggling with the anxiety produced by striving to be successful and productive. Graciously, God handed me an unforeseen opportunity just recently that has caused me to slow down and be humble enough to recognize my life isn’t measured by success and productivity. It’s being beloved by God. Thank you for your words that are a refreshing reminder.

    • sounds like an opportunity you’ve been invited to experience… ! how awesome. may it refresh and give your vision wings and flight… i’m a vision person too… we just need to relax with the conviction that the vision won’t go away but actually be ignited by rest (like oxygen to a match). love your spirit, Stephanie!

  4. Dear Bonnie. As I read your words I reflect on not only doing God’s will but my own personal well being spiritually and physically. God has asked much of me. I have been driven to accomplish what He has commanded of me. In so doing I have forgotten that unless I am grounded myself, feel the peace of God, rest when need be, go to that special place where god and I have precious moments together I will never accomplish what needs to be done. I thank you for that reminder. In my zeal to please God I have forgotten myself in many ways. In my quest to rectify wrongs I have done wrongs unto myself. There should not be a price to pay for doing the mighty work of God. There should be joy. I have been willing to pay a price that God never asked me to pay. I thank you for that reminder.

  5. Bonnie,
    This is just exquisite. That’s all I can say, except to add- the Lord used your book to change my life. I received a huge ‘heart healing’ through it, and I want you to know I’m grateful for your obedience in writing it, even though it was hard. Thank you, dear sister!

    • i can’t tell you how much that encourages my heart, Kimmygirl. writing has changed mine and to know it has brought me #kindreds to share the journey – SO happy! in January, I’ll be inviting friends to gather 1-3 friends to launch Whitespace Groups — supported by an Online Spiritual Whtiespace Book Club – cuz I realize presence – being with real people – it what makes the journey more real and connected, so email me if you feel prompted, ‘k? 🙂 faithbarista(at)gmail.com

  6. Well, you had me at … Carmel! Just the mention of that special place brings a smile to my face. As you know I enjoyed a weekend there only recently. But I long to live this life moment by moment. I thank you for your words of advice to me during my fall break this past week. I wrote one page at a time with Jesus. That visual was so helpful to me Bonnie. I know social media can be so addicting. Instant responses and connecting with people. I am a cross between a popular sanguine and a peaceful phlegmatic. If I have too much of one or the other, I’m cranky. So I try to have moments in both.

    Love your post here today.

    Blessings and love,

    • thanks for sharing your words. it’s absolutely clear and i can hear your voice in both pieces, Debbie. Now, that you’ve been there meeting with Jesus just one page at a time, keep meeting with Him there. 🙂 xo

  7. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of what is important. And since you quoted Nouwen (one of my all-time favorites), I couldn’t help but think of his book, Life of the Beloved. One of the best things you will ever read (if you haven’t already)

    • yes, it is on my nightstand, Julie. it has fed my journey in becoming the Beloved and I hope my voice can be alongside Nouwen’s. Nouwen speaks my soul lanugage. His book “The Way of The Heart” changed my life in my twenties and led me own experience, which I call “Finding Spiritual Whitespace”. 😉

  8. thank you again! I find myself in that struggle constantly of “do I stop and meet with God, or do I go accomplish? I bet I can squeeze in something here in the early morning..” How silly it seems when I take a breath and realize that any accomplishment I may have would come from Him anyway! I MUST sit with Him – I need Him more than I need the air to breathe! I fight the need for soul rest with hearing that negative voice speak – “laziness” in my ear! To rejuvenate in the Lord; THAT is true accomplishment, power, strength, wisdom, and especially discipline! Thank you for reminding me what is first and foremost – I am too busy NOT to take time with the Lord for strength, direction, cleansing, and wisdom! Just to worship Him brings all these to pass!

  9. “…within this world of instant and absolute communication, unbounded by limits of time or space, we suffer from unprecedented alienation. We have never been more detached from one another, or lonelier.

    Self-presentation… is continuous, intensely mediated. Curating the exhibition of the self has become a 24/7 occupation.

    I could not have summed up my thoughts better than those two statements you wrote above about social media. There are time I have stayed on FB and Instagram WAY to long and it’s absolutely soul sucking. Immediately after I closed the windows to both of those apps, I would realize that I felt a sense of complete isolation and loneliness that was overwhelming. I was comparing my life to everyone on social media (and we all know, social media can be the last depiction of real life for most).

    My best friend and sister talk about this all of the time. It’s so important to just be present in our lives and not engulfed in a fake sense of reality by sulking in self pity through social media outlets. For me, social media can become about comparison and jealousy and I know that is not the kind of fruits God wants me to be producing. There have also been times where I’ve had to step back because I can see myself becoming to concerned with “self”. I’ve actually fasted from social media before and I am very careful to limit exactly how much time I am spending online through outlets like FB, Instagram and Pinterest. When I do this, my soul is joyful. I use that soul sucking time I would be on social media and spend that time instead with God.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love blogs, Instagram, FB, Pinterest, and any fun social media site or app and the connections it can make. I am all over those and my friends know they can always come to hear about the latest fashion trend or cool online site but there are times where I must step back and rest in God. I know from personal experience I must step back because it can leave my soul feeling empty. I counteract it with being present in my life, weather its enjoying time with friends, my family or just creating art myself in a quiet space. Time spent with God is always so much more soul satisfying than time spent online.

  10. Bonnie,
    What a timely message for so many of us to quiet the noise and aimless striving to simply be His. It is so important for us to slow down and no longer measure our worth on what we produce. Love that: We are not a brand, we are beloved. Blessings to you!

  11. Here i sit with my cup of tea reading your words and absorbing them deep into my soul. And what happens? I look out my window and see 8 wild turkeys eating the grain i threw out about a half hour ago!. Yes the lawn needs to be raked! But for the moment i am reminded that God feeds me as i feed the birds, and if God opens His hand freely as i do then i must realize how well cared for i am. I love you Jesus and praise Your Holy Name. Thankyou for caring and loving me. May i and all who share in this message experience Your LOVE!

  12. Thanks again, Bonnie, for touching my life this morning! You reminded me that I need to stop, rest & pray Psalm 143:10 before I take off today!
    Bless you!

  13. Thank you Bonnie. This summer experiencing a similar need to renew my mind(set). I think I am ready to live that rest. Shalom

  14. I loved this. A lot. In a world where we can come quickly obsessed with other’s “experience” of our character it is easy to cheapen even our own worth.
    God is not interested in this.

  15. I’ve read through this twice. The first time rushed, as I was clicking through all the places I long to connect to online. The second time I savored the words and let them sink into my soul. These words today are spoken from the Father, to me. Thanks for being His instrument. Pray for me to let them stir around my soul enough to change me and convince me of the truth.

  16. As Debbie, above stated, you “had me at Carmel”… My favorite and special town that I retreat to every year for the past 25 years…….unfortunately, I haven’t been able to take my retreat for the past three years. I just offered up a prayer yesterday, that I would, in Gods timing, be given the opportunity to take the beautiful drive up the coast and be refilled……
    Your mentioning your past two years experience with severe anxiety REALLY a hit home with me. I too, have been “blessed”?!? With the very same thorn for the past two plus years. The anxiety has caused me to isolate my whole life, often keeping me locked in my own home and mind for days at a time. Your post reminded me at HE is in charge, not me. And, that I am called to retreat with him, instead of the world. You’ve blessed me with new thoughts and perspectives on my own journey, despite and regardless of my souls loneliness. I am reminded to place it all in the cup of His tender loving mercy. Thank you so much. I feel joy…a rare commodity these days!!! You will be in my own personal prayers.

  17. Last night I entered into a spiritual direction small group inspired to ask God, “What is my calling?”
    I expected a job description with action steps and the confirmation to proceed… (Just as any “good” boss would do).
    What I came away with were only the words “beloved daughter” with the only “action” to lean on Him.. Nothing profound… No eureka moments or earth shattering revelations that I didn’t already know to be true.. ( in my head)
    Then I got your blog.. Beauty in words poetically written and in God’s perfect timing… God’s call for me.. Rest.. Be Loved.. Chose quiet over busy accomplishments…. Accept Belovedness as His only request..
    How simple.. How true.. How transformational both for myself & for the world around me..
    God grant me courage to journey to just be His Beloved for in the end it’s all that truly matters.

  18. For the first time in over 25 years, I find myself having to find a job outside the home. When my children were young, it became obvious I needed to be a stay-at-home mom in order for me to be available for my older son’s special needs. I never regretted that decision, and my husband had a good paying job. Now, things are quite different. Hubby hasn’t had full time employment for a while, and it has become increasingly hard for us to manage. I am now 56 years old; my skills are rusty to say the least, and EVERYTHING is done online! My computer skills are good, but there is no PERSONAL interaction with prospective employers! “Brand influence is a commodity” is relevant when trying find a job, but how can I market myself when I’m not sure how I come across in an online job profile? I’m not sure I can compete in a market of younger, more efficiently skilled people, and I don’t want to! I love being a homemaker! I love making menus and food shopping, then preparing tasty, but economical meals for my husband and myself! I am fearful of putting myself out there…and yet, I am WILLING to do whatever is necessary to help get us through this time. I am trusting God’s provision, and I know that I can do all things…if that is His will. Need some prayers of encouragement and discernment.

  19. Wow.! This is so beautiful! So refreshing and so encouraging! Thank you my Dear Sister in Christ, for letting Gods spirit speak thru you and remind me that life is not about production and trying to be the Best, but about slowing down and hearing HIM even when the world tells you differently and even our familys say this is what life should be. Thank you,,,Thank you!!! Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart!

  20. Hi Bonnie
    Thank you for the gift of your book. My father left at the age of 6. At the age of 40 I am still dealing with the impact of his actions more that I ever have before. The heartache is sometimes unbearable. Your book helped me not feel alone in it. Thank you for that.

  21. As always, thank you Bonnie, for having the courage to speak up about us really having permission to rest in Christ. The January groups sound like a lovely idea to connect with other Christian women in person. Hope you are having a happy day in Christ:)

  22. Thank you, Bonnie, for the practical suggestions of how to feed our souls with quiet things, stillness, prayer, and choosing the small. As I read through the list, I found myself thinking, “Oh, yes. Moments such as these would undoubtedly help me to experience God in deeper, more intimate ways.” And how exciting to contemplate that “work will be transformed into a soulful expression of who we are as people of faith, loved by God!”

  23. By taking a painting class, and by writing songs with the guitar that I just learned to play this year- this is how I find soul rest, and feel His presence more closely. This article hit the nail on the head. You have a gift, Bonnie. But I’m sure that as each gift is realized, it has come at a personal price. Thanks for writing.

  24. I so needed the reminder that I am His beloved. It is hard to slow down when my heart isn’t in full trust. Lord please help me trust You.

  25. Thanks so much for writing this post. I’m new to this blog world and I’m starting to see how very quickly it can take over my life. I been blogging for a month and love what I do and I’m enjoying all the new bloggers out there. But your post is such a great reminder to slow down and be in relationship with God. It’s God who inspires me and fills me.

  26. Hello Bonnie. I am not a person who easily journals or ever responds to blog invitations like yours. However, I felt that I must respond to you. Weeks a go a friend and I began reading your book to each other and praying together. I couldn’t put your book down as I felt it drawing out of me the deep hidden hurts of my own childhood …never acknowledged to myself as I was afraid to recognize the effects that it had on my relationship with God, my Father. I have been able to read my Bible but praying had become increasing difficult and eventually non- existent in my life. The well of grief began to rise up in me as I read your book, then slammed it down in anger, unwilling to acknowledge that I didn’t trust God let alone believe that He really loved me. I cry a lot but am coming to realise the finding Spiritual Whitespace is the stepping stone to learning to trust God and believe that he does love me. My friend and I have challenged each other to find a place in our homes that will be our ” Whitespace”. Now I longingly look to it as a place to begin my journey into the arms of a loving Heavenly Father that I can trust with everything and learn to believe that He simply loves me. I have been so lonely it is sometimes unbearable. I have to trust God…there is no other option. He does love me…the option of not believing is despair…resting is really believing. Thank you for being transparent enough to write from your heart.

  27. Sweet Bonnie,

    Thank you for taking the time that you need to refresh your heart. It’s a gift to God as well as to others. Because of your practice of soul care, you have been able to extend that same care to others. You are teaching us by example, which is the most valuable lesson of all (actions, not empty words). This post was exactly what I needed to read today. <3

  28. Bonnie,
    I faced this crossroad – the Cross, once again intersecting the world – again in August. I was caught in the push to gain more readers and make my blog known and lost my umph to write. So I stopped. I took time off – a fast is always good when overwhelmed and pulled down. When I came back to writing, I was able to celebrate my “blogiversary” by enjoying both the venue and experience of my blog AND the ability to step away when needed. Real life (inner life) must always come ahead of outer life. I am so grateful for you and the message God has drawn out through your healing journey. It is one so many of us need to hear again and again. Bless you, sweet Bonnie. Social media brought us together – and for that I am grateful.

  29. dearest Bonnie,
    as I returned to reread this post again today I followed the link provided in the words “to become the beloved”…and it was all there waiting for me…the image of the dandelion…His invitation–Matthew 11:28-30…your words of wisdom “Dare to be real” . I’ve been overwhelmed and weary and I needed this gentle reminder…thank you…bless you.

  30. Well said Bonnie. I feel like this describes my year. Going through this journey with you has given me a lot of peace in being silent across the web. I’ll speak only when I have something to say, but otherwise, I’m just listening, being, living. And I know that these things will in turn give me something more to say, and I’ll speak again. It’s a healthy ebb and flow instead of feeling guilty all the time for not “producing” more. I’d rather be at peace letting God produce His wonderful and transformative work in me. And in that, I have faith that the gifts He’s given me to share will not be wasted, but refined. Love always to you friend <3

  31. Bonnie,

    This doesn’t feel comfortable. Letting God love me. I squirm at the thought. God is holy, holy, holy, and I’m wicked. Feel unworthy of His love. This is hard. It’s easy for me to pray for others to serve them. But to receive love it’s hard. The Bible says my heart is wicked deceitful who can understand it Jeremiah 17:9.

  32. Bonnie, this entire article touched my heart. Especially pondering how Jesus Himself was careful to connect with people one on one and with the Father continuously. That is how He stayed refreshed and strong because He cultivated a rich relationship with His Father. I want my heavenly Father to get more of my full attention throughout the day. Since unplugging from facebook, there isn’t a constant interruption, afraid I will miss responding to someone or hurting someone because I miss a post or forget to “like” something. I want to connect with people face to face…facebook, while handy at times, was slowly stealing away genuine relationship. Thank you for writing this, heading over to Atlantic Wire to read the other article.

    Love and Blessings,

  33. Bonnie,

    I need quiet and spiritual whitespace. This year has been rough to say the least. Moving dad into assisted living then medication issues landed him in hospital and rehab for about 10 days. All was ok for a while then he fell 3X in 1 month and then again 2 months later. Back to hospital we go again. He is well now though. But through all this I worked a stressful job that I don’t like and my hubby almost lost his job.

    Believe me I choose the quiet everyday!!! I love your writing and this poem:

    So choose the quiet.
    When you come to a fork in the road in a day-
    between choosing the quiet or filling it up
    by performing, or pleasing, or disappearing – or stop
    Choose what’s harder but more soul-filling
    Enjoy something no one would be able to point at it
    and say “Look she did something”.
    Choose instead to be loved.
    Let God love you.
    Choose the quiet.

    We all need to learn to love the quiet and let God love us as we are!!

    Blessings 🙂

  34. Dear Bonnie,
    Thank you kindred friend. You always from way back encouraged me to be real and share the real me with Christ and others. Love you!

  35. Dear Bonnie,

    Reading this article rings so many bells inside me. For instance, it dawns on me that I’m so closed in alone in loneliness and life of no direction. It tells me that there is life out there, even mine own life awaits me to get out and live it “as is.”

    Thank so much for availing yourself for God to use you.
    I believe this is the beginning of our journey together.

    God bless us.