About the Author

Elizabeth is a writer and creator of the Hope and Wholeness Blog. She’s a Louisiana girl but currently resides in the great state of Texas. Elizabeth is a seeker of Truth, a lover of freedom, and someone who brings joy and coffee into peoples’ lives.

Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. I can relate! I turned 30 last year and promised myself at the beginning of 2016 that it was going to be THE year, I was going to enter my 30s strong, etc….. And while I did keep to that promise in many ways, by the end of the year anxiety, panic attacks, and depression had set in, keeping me mostly close to my own home, affecting my relationships, the whole bit. It was a sobering reminder that we aren’t just “there” because we think we should be. Ironically, the anxiety flared just after my 30th birthday. I’m still in the fight of my life, but I can tell God is working in me through it. I’ve often wondered why I’ve had to suffer so long (anxiety has been a fairly persistent, on-and-off visitor since age 11), but it’s not about my timing or understanding. That’s been a tough one to swallow. Thanks for sharing!

    • I can relate to the struggles with anxiety. Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing. I’ll be praying for you Amber! And I’m so glad that God uses all these things, even redeeming our pain for the good of us, His children.

    • Amber,
      I have suffered with anxiety (OCD) and depression since I was a child. I just want to encourage you to seek (if you haven’t already) professional medical help. I always thought if I just prayed harder, tried harder, kept striving to be a better Christian then the anxiety would go away. Actually, the more I tried, the worse it got. Anxiety is a mental illness which in my case needed medicine to be treated. Once on the medicine I was better able to read, digest, and grasp God’s Word which then layered His peace upon my illness as well. Simply put medicine and His Word are what keep me in the ballgame (and believe me I’ve tried everything). I am 55 and still have episodes, but it’s definitely more manageable. I will be praying for you….and ps. there is no such thing as perfect. Take it from a recovering perfectionist.
      Love and blessings and ((hugs)),
      Bev xo

      • Hi Bev,
        I have been an incourage reader for a few years now, and have read a lot of your comments, so I am sorry if this seems too forward, but I had a question. I also suffer from OCD and I just wanted to ask what medications you found helpful. I have anxiety over taking anything, and just started something yesterday but feel fearful of it helping. Thank you so much for any advice you could give.

        • Camille,
          Not too forward at all….rather than post my answer here because I think I could some share some other helpful things in addition to what medication I have taken….some helpful coping strategies…importance of things like counseling, etc.

          I invite you to contact me at my personal email address : bevduncan103@yahoo.com

          I too felt nervous and fearful about taking medicine. I wrestled with feeling like a failure or I was crazy and all sorts of other things. The fact is – it’s an illness like diabetes and it can be treated from many angles. I’d be happy to share with you what has worked for me.

          Please do contact me at my email address so we can correspond that way….

          Praying for you sweet sister…you are NOT alone and God gets OCD!! Promise!
          Love and ((hugs)),
          Bev

    • Wow thank you so much for that, Amber. I have struggled with the ups and downs of anxiety for years too. And I’ve gone to see several counselors and that has helped so so much. Thank you for sharing your heart and your struggle. The Lord has GOOD purpose, even in the pain and darkness of anxiety and depression, just keep walking forward. You are exactly where you need to be. When you are weak, He is strong.

    • Thank you so much for sharing Amber! Believe me, you are not alone! I am in my 20’s and I also suffer from anxiety. Jesus is always with you and there is no reason to fear. He loves you and is with you and for you! You do not have to be perfect to be loved by Him! He loves us all the same! Thank God for that! Please Jesus, fill Amber with Your peace which is unlike any other. Bless her with peace as she goes about daily life and help her when anxiety rears its ugly head in her life. Help her to remember she is beautiful and precious in Your sight and You will never leave her. May she always trust in You! Thank You Lord Jesus, our Prince of Peace! Amen!

      “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 ❤

      “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” – ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:6‬ ‭NIV‬‬ ❤

      Blessings always Amber! Sending love and hugs your way! Xoxo ❤❤

    • Amber,

      I agree totally with Bev. Talk to someone and see if medicine won’t help some. I have seen many students get better with meds. Praying for you. May God guide your life and being about some peace.

      (((Hugs)))

  2. It never stops! Each decade is filled with something new.
    when I entered my fifties I said it was time to know the bible(yes that’s way too late).
    But the blessing is each day is a gift from God.
    Good luck on your journey, Elizabeth.
    Life is a roller coaster… and wish I had known sooner the ride would be so much easier knowing God was in control and there’s nothing to fear

    • Thank you for that encouragement Deborah! I love hearing from women with a perspective from years down the road. I feel like I constantly need to be reminded that God is in control and there is nothing to fear. Thank you for your faith!

      • I agree with Deborah, It never stops, but God’s love never stops either !
        I’m in my fourteens and I take it as years to learn fortitude ! why not ?
        And I’m still discovering His Love for me in ways I could never imagine !
        Roller coaster for my heart but in His safety hand 🙂
        PS : Sorry if I did mistakes, I am french 😉

  3. Thank you for sharing this! It helps me so much. I am just in my early twenties, about to graduate college, and especially after reading this sweet and comforting post, if I get nothing else out of my twenties, I want to look back and say, “Wow, the Lord was at work, and He grew me so much, and I know He will continue to do so.”

    • YES! Meredith, oh my. I wish I could grab coffee with you right now and hear how your senior year is going and your hopes, dreams, and fears for the future. If I could go back to my senior year, I would saturate myself in trust and remember that God is GOOD. He is not going to leave me on my own. I wasted so much mental and emotional energy with worry. You are in a sweet place, friend. The Lord has beautiful plans for your future and all you have to do is trust and obey 🙂

      • Aw, that would be such a treat for me too! To hear your thoughts and how you are as well in this season! If we ever find ourselves in the same city, we’ll just have to grab coffee! 😀
        I will remember all you said, and write that reminder on my wall: Trust and remember that God is good. And you know, I even need His help to trust Him, so I’ll be praying up a storm for His help and sweet reminders of all His truths! Will be praying for you as well, that this season is marked not by perfection, but by God’s faithfulness and His perfection, and His deep love for you. Hooray! 😀

  4. Amen, our twenties are some of the craziest days or some of the most monotonous days.. seriously. Where would we be without Jesus? Thank you Lord for allowing me to know you. Thank you for writing 🙂 I loved it!

    • Thank you Jasmine! You are absolutely right. Some days I feel like a wild success and some days a complete failure. Neither are of true importance. Yes, where would we be without the grace and love of Jesus? So glad to connect with friends and have the safety to be honest here!

  5. Sounds like you’ve got a lot of things figured out, Elizabeth! You’re on the right track. Great stuff!

  6. Wow, your post encouraged me this morning, Elizabeth. I’m also just about to turn 25 and constantly wrestling with disappointment. I resonate with what you say about arrival. I had also expected everything might just fall into place, answers would come easily to me, and a career would show up and fill me. Only our Heavenly Father can do that, and how patient he is with me as I try to understand that waiting, soaking up this journey, rather than arriving is hos desire for me. He wants us most to rely on him, like you said, for all strength and wisdom. I hope I will choose him today!

    • Yes! Absolutely. I feel like I’m just now learning how to put my hope in nothing but Christ. And you are absolutely right, the journey glorifies Jesus much more than any arrival. Praying for you as we navigate our twenties. Thank God for His grace and understanding and knowing that we are messy humans.

  7. Elizabeth,
    I am in my 50’s and I have let go of the myth that as some certain age I will have “arrived”. Every decade has held its triumphs and trials. Through it all it has solidified one Truth that God is good, He can be trusted, and He will never leave nor forsake me. Perseverance through my years has increased my reliance and dependence on God. More of Him, less of me. I have finally come to the conclusion that I will not “arrive” until I leave this world and step into eternal life with my Lord. That has helped me to appreciate the journey, draw close to the Lord and enjoy Him everyday, and focus less on some man made goals in my head. Hang in there girl – the journey’s just begun…keep relying on the Lord and you will be running the race He has for you to run. Great post!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Well said, Bev. This is not our home, rather a journey. So it’s about how we travel…do we complain or enjoy the length, the ride, etc. And do we serve and bless others so they too join us on the journey? So glad we have the Holy Spirit’s guidance all along the way!

    • Thank you Bev! I love hearing from women who have experienced more life. Thank you for the reminder that God can, indeed, be trusted and He is good. So encouraging to hear from you!

  8. You have already been blessed with great wisdom in how you reflect and write. Thank you for sharing this article with many readers of many ages. I’m turning 40 in a couple of months, and wrestle with similar sentiments and struggles…a recovering perfectionist, I’m always asking God for the ability to take one day at a time, to be more like Him in how I love others, and for forgiveness and grace when I make mistakes and outright sin. He’s such a good Daddy, to love us unconditionally and to give us wisdom when we ask! As we go through new phases of life, we may have different challenges, but He is constant! Amen?

    Elizabeth, you ARE bearing fruit and blessing others in your 20s! Praying for more and more, as you stay close to Him.

    • AMEN! Ah thank you Alison! I feel like I will always be a recovering perfectionist, but thank God for forgiveness and grace upon grace. What an incredibly good God He is. Thank you for your encouragement!! It means more than you know!

  9. You’ve said it well, Elizabeth. I went into my twenties with the exact same mindset; and found out pretty quickly just how wrong I was. At 57 now I can look back and I’m so thankful for God’s grace and mercy. You know what? I’m still learning today and still loving our gracious Savior; hang in there, it does get easier and we do grow smarter!

    • Thank you so much!! That’s so comforting to hear. Thank you for the perspective and wisdom from farther down the road 🙂 I treasure that. I’m learning every day that this life is absolutely not about me. It is all about Jesus and the redemption He is working. He is so good.

  10. Elizabeth – thank you for being so real – so transparent. AND so willing to learn at 20 something. At 67, I’m still learning, searching, growing, seeking, and I know I will continue to grow till I no longer have breath. You are on an amazing journey, may it always be so!

  11. You are wise at an early age. I am in my 60s and wish I had figured this out much younger!! You are very blessed! Just keep being led by the Holy Spirit!!

    • Thank you Sharon! You too! I pray that we both realize that God has us exactly where He wants us in this journey 🙂 He has beautiful purpose, and He can be trusted.

    • God bless you too, Melissa! It’s amazing how every season of life has so much purpose, whether we see it or not. I know the journey has only begun. Thank you for encouraging me!

  12. I turned 56 this year & I still haven’t “arrived” & im still learning. I’ve come a long way & learned a lot & one of the things I’ve learned is we won’t actually arrive until we reach our final, eternal home. I am much wiser & at peace then I used to be & I am filled with joy. I learned the secret to that joy, wisdom & contentment is to totally live for God every day & in everything I do. I wish I knew that in my 20’s & 30’s, it would of saved me a lot of pain, heartache & regrets. Even though I’ve been a Christian my whole life, always involved in church, Christian school, Biblestudy’s etc., it wasn’t until I decided to seek Him & His ways first & to live only for Him that I really truly found Him & His peace & joy.
    God is good, He deserves all my praise.

    • You are so right, Loree. Arrival isn’t possible until we are with Jesus and fully redeemed. I love hearing your perspective from later down the road! It is more encouraging than you realize. I’m so blessed by your story 🙂 Thank you for sharing! Thank you for encouraging me to pursue Christ!

    • Yes! Thank you for speaking that blessing over us, Madeline. I love that you’ve written for (in)courage too! You are a gifted writer and so beautiful inside and out. Thankful for you and thankful for a gracious God who is so worthy of our praise 🙂

  13. Elizabeth,

    Thank you so much for this post. I just turned 25, and I thought I was the only one struggling through my 20’s. This has been one of the roughest decades for me: adjusting to the “real world,” sticking out in the workplace due to my age, finding a career that fits and romantic heartbreak experiences. Praise God that He is so much greater than your situation and Mine! He is such a good Teacher, and I think it is wise and godly to point us twenty-somethings to the Lord and let Him control the plans for our life. Thank you for your honesty. To all the other twenty-something girls out there-trust God!! He’s capable of our messiness!

    • Kristen, I’m right there with you. Post-college is just hard. Way harder than I expected. But I’m actually so thankful for hardship because it pushes me deeper in my relationship with Jesus. I run to Him, and He gives so much grace and comfort. You’re right, He’s such a good Teacher! And He uses even our worst mistakes for good. That blows me away. Hang in there!! In the rough seasons, the Lord is laying a foundation of trust in Him that will sustain us for eternity.

  14. I think wisdom comes in realizing how little you know. I thought I knew it all in high school but then went to college and realized how naive I was. I graduated college and was again slammed with how naive I was about the real world. I am just barely out of my twenties at 32, and I personally have found marriage and motherhood to be the most humbling of all. We are ALL making it up as we go. The mistakes continue, and now the stakes feel even higher because it isn’t just my life it affects but the lives of my husband and my three daughters who look up to me. I am in the process of learning to shift my goal from “arriving” to *growing* into the woman God is calling me to be; it’s the direction that matters more than the details of the journey. I’m not saying the details don’t matter, because they do, especially in the present season, yet we can’t let them deter us from the direction. The mark of maturity isn’t what we know; it’s a life that breathes “God, I want to know you more.”

    • I love this so much, Kay!! Thank you! “Wisdom comes in realizing how little you know.” THAT is wisdom right there. I need to write that down and remember it. I often get caught up in trying too hard that I miss out on freedom. I pray that I live with a heart that purely desires more of the Lord.

  15. Elizabeth,

    I feel I have “arrived” sort of. Each decade has its ups and downs. While I don’t like change or trials. I have learned that each trial brought me that much closer to God. My last trial with my aging dad’s dementia brought me super close to God. I witnessed a miracle and have renewed vigor for Him and His word. Each year I learn more and more about myself and God. This is just a journey God has put us on and we need Him to show us the way!

    Blessings 🙂

  16. Elizabeth, when I read this, it gave me such encouragement for our 26 year old son. He’s gone through job trials, friend disappointments, discouragement and doubt, self-esteem issues, mistakes. He loves the Lord and is seeking employment and has been going through the valley in that area since last July. But, I forwarded your posting to him last night as encouragement along with others comments, as I can relate at my 64 yrs and I wanted him to be encouraged that others are still trying to figure it out or it took more than a couple of yrs into the 20s. This is what he wrote, so God Bless you for sharing your heart and being real. Donna
    (I had to smile at the DFW Airport part as we live in Dallas!)

    John said:
    This is absolutely beautiful. It is possibly the most insightfully rendered critique of an experience so intimate to my own in many ways. What an authentically honest heart she has. Love, “And if my expectation is arrival, I will be disappointed every time. The truth is, I’m just at the starting line of life, learning what it means to live, work hard, fail, know who I am, and give grace to myself and others.”

    Thanks for sharing!
    Love you, J

    • Ahhh, Donna! I am just now reading this and am incredibly encouraged and humbled. I am so so glad that my words could encourage John. I am definitely a peer who is also struggling to figure it out. I pray that both of us will have the courage and humility to endure and trust the Lord. He has good in store for both of us!

      It’s SO comforting to know that we are not alone. Praying for John. What a blessing that he has a mother who seeks ways to encourage him and build him up. Way to go, Mama!

      PS: YAY DALLAS!! Yep, I’m living in Texas and loving it 🙂

  17. My Queen of Heaven friend you have done it again, you’ve shattered the glass in the most stunning of ways. Thank you for your rawness, for the gift of a deep breath and an exhale of claiming that I am not alone. This is a season of learning.
    Time is a healer.

  18. I think the true “arrival” actually comes when we leave this earth…. so give yourself some grace and know that we’re all in the same boat, no matter what our age. Let God lead you – only He knows the way!

  19. I am so glad I stumbled upon this. I have really been struggling lately with allowing God to take over. I have always wanted to know where I am going and what career I am pursuing while I am still studying in my undergrad. But just as you said, it’s so important to let him guide you and allow you to rely completely on his strength. He has great plans that were made just for us.

    • Hey Kylie, I’m just now seeing this. But GIRL. Yes. I remember being in undergrad (not that long ago) and feeling like I had to have it all figured out by the time I graduated. Thankfully, I’ve learned that that is an unrealistic expectation. I’ve been set free by hearing SO MANY other people’s stories who are years post-graduation and are still are figuring it out. You have time. The Lord has a plan. Just be faithful with what is right in front of you. He will provide, friend.