• Tamra Andress

Learning Who God Is with Amy Seiffert

Unwind with the sweetness of the human soul, the sweetness of the character of the Lord that's in today's human, Amy Seiffert. Amy is an author, a speaker, a monthly contributor to YouVersion, and a teacher. She is the author of Chin Up: Wearing Grace, Strength, and Dignity when Motherhood Unravels Our Souls and Grace Looks Amazing On You. The motherhood journey that she shares is so good, so heartbreaking, and also so hope giving.

Don't go anywhere. Just cozy up and be still. You're gonna learn some applicable ways to dissect your faith and to dive deeper into the knowing of who He is and who He wants to show off for you as. Enjoy!

About Amy:

Amy Seiffert is an author, speaker, and monthly YouVersion teacher. She also serves on the teaching team at her home church, Brookside Church. Previously she was a Team Leader with Cru at BGSU and has worked with them for more than eighteen years. Weaving biblical wisdom through her presentations, Amy inspires, teaches, and humbly invites any willing spiritual pilgrim to walk alongside her in the pursuit of truth and the knowledge of God. Amy is married to Rob, and they live in Bowling Green, Ohio, with their three kids.

Where to Find Amy:

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Show Notes: Learning Who God Is

All right, we're getting into that harvest season, and while I am such a pumpkin, spice, everything kind of girl, I really right now just wanna like, wear an oversized sweatshirt and hang out with you, put on my cozy socks, take off my makeup, and, um, unwind with the sweetness of the human soul, the sweetness of the character of the Lord that's abused in today's human soul, through Amy Seifert.

She's an author, a speaker. She's a monthly contributor to you version. She's a teacher. She's in her teaching team for her pastoral role. She's, oh gosh, she's been a part of young life, which you guys know. Part of my story, if you've read my book, you, you've got to know her. Literally hands down. She's really authored and stewarded so many incredible books that.

Want in your library, a dear wife that she was a contributor in. She has the book, Chin Up, Wearing Grace, Strength, and Dignity when Motherhood Unravels Our Souls. Ugh. Her motherhood journey that she shares in this show is so good and so heartbreaking, and also so Hope giving. She has Grace looks amazing on you, which was when you version reached out to her, you're gonna hear about that story too.

It's a hundred days of reflecting on God's. And the one that's coming out in the spring we're so excited about is starved. Why we need a spiritual diet change to move us from tired, anxious, and overwhelmed to fulfilled whole and free need. I say more to this incredible introduction. Please do us both a favor.

Will you like share and review this podcast? Tag Amy. She's on Instagram all the time and most social medias, but that's her, her gram. I won't give away the secret sauce yet. Amy. They've gotta tune in to find out what your son calls the gram. And you guys, I just appreciate you. You're always here to listen, but today just really.

Don't go anywhere. Just cozy up and be still. You're gonna learn some new applicable ways to dissect your faith and to drive deeper into the knowing of who he is and who he wants to show off for you as. All right, So sweet. So good. You're gonna love it. Welcome to the Fit and Faith podcast. FIT is an acronym representing founders, innovators, and trailblazers who are looking to live a life wholly, fully, authentically, and truly fit a space for us to connect on the raw real stories of mind, body, and soul alignment of entrepreneurs and kingdom leaders.

I'm your host, Tamara Andres, and this podcast isn't like the cookie cutter interview experience. I've been coined the entrepreneurial rabbi, and so we do go there unscripted. No matter how far, wide, deep, or high the there is. My desire is to see people rise from the inside out into their greatest calling by sharing their truest stories, talents, and tips.

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Hello, hello and welcome to the show, Amy. I am so excited to introduce you to my community and if they don't already know you, they probably already do. But, uh, thanks for being on the Fit and Faith podcast. Thanks for having me. I'm so humbled and honored to be with you. You're doing fantastic work. So, I'm.

I'm glad to join you today. I appreciate it. It's been so cool. Like I, I think it's really neat that we have the opportunity to get connected in the kingdom the way that only God could do and to utilize the spaces and things like social media to do so , and you've been such a light in my life, and it's so wild that you can have somebody in like the crevices, in the corners.

Sacred secret spaces that the world doesn't ever know about. Like literally I can watch and learn from you when I'm laughing in my bathtub to to the quiet hours of the morning when I can't sleep, right? Like, and I probably shouldn't be on social media, but I am. And right is your sweet face. So it's okay.

Like God is good all the time. , he'll show up, he'll show up. But you, you. So much. I love how you, you teach. I love how you, um, steward him in the way that you show up in social media, and that's not always an easy thing to do. And, um, I'm excited to learn about where that stems from and, and what your heartbeat is in all of these different realms.

So, author, teacher, uh, uh, writer you version app. I mean, I wanna get into your home. Church. There's so much about your bio that I'm excited to share with the community. . Thank you. I love social media too. I mean, it's like, it can be a curse as well as a blessing. True. Oh yeah. Oh yeah. That's real, and to learn how to steward it well.

It's a practice, right? Mm-hmm. . So yes, I love . I love that we have connected in that way, and can we just keep bringing Jesus and infuse it into this space, right? That's so needed. So needed and, and really, everyone always uses, you know, for such a time as this. I think the, for such a time is, this has literally been since the garden.

I mean yes, . We've needed it. We always need 'em. We're always gonna need 'em. Yes. Um, nothing is more like crucial or crazy than it was a decade ago than it was centuries ago. And so, um, yes. For such a time as this . Yes, Yes. It's keep on, Keep eye. Yes, Yes, yes. So tell us about like your, like your backstory.

I'd love for you to just share, you know, how has faith been infused since you were little, and how has your journey just kind of unfolded to be where you are now and how you're showing up. Yes, absolutely. Um, so my, I, I like to say I feel like I'm an answered prayer from my grandma. Like she had a sweet faith, um, with a Catholic background.

She had seven kids. My mom was the oldest of seven. Whoa. Right. Um, so I have. Aunts and uncles and cousins for James Cousins everywhere. Love. They're just everywhere. Um, and she was my confirmation sponsor and taught me some different things and started to put some pieces of who God was and the goodness of the gospel.

Um, but then those pieces kind of. Finally clicked in a way that I really understood when I was 15 and I went to Young Life Camp. I don't know if any any of your listeners are familiar. I see one thing. It's so great. Um, and man, there was a moment, and obviously our faith is built in moments over time.

Like, and I have many of them, right? So there's um, the moment when it all clicked and I was sitting. In by, By the lake in CAC, New York. That's where I know where it's where it was. Have you been there? Gosh. . So happy. So good. So good. Oh my gosh, it's so fun. Okay, so it was a week of such fun on the lake, but this last night when it just kind of hit and I remember sitting under the stars at the lake and asking, God, would you come into my life and can I start a relationship with you?

And I kid you not, Tamara, it felt like about 50 pounds was lifted off of my shoulders. It's almost like I could have floated. I felt so free and light and I was like, Oh. Like it was like, it felt like the, the, Yeah, the burden was lifted and I had just this, this connection. Yes. So I hold dear to that cuz that.

Like 25 years ago or something. , of course. Of course. But it feels like so real when you can put yourself back in that space. And what's really cool is I can literally put myself on the lake and sarana with you. Oh my gosh. When did you go? I was, gosh, Um, 2002. 2002. Okay. Yeah, so I was like 96, so, ok. Ok. So it was then I, I've done like Rockbridge, which is in Sweet too.

Yeah. I Ali I love young life. Young life was a huge, uh, part of my, my journey and my exploration in my relationship with the Lord. And I know the biggest seeds that were planted in my faith happened through young life. And so I love it so much for people. I also got. Not by young life, but by, you know, the flesh people.

Yeah. , who were, uh, who were actually leaders. And so I had this like disdain and I didn't hold it over the organization, but it's always tied together, you know, And something that, Oh yes, church hurt is like a real thing. Yes, it's real. And before I knew what it was, that's what I was connected to. Yeah. So I know that you.

Went like, I, I wanna know, like, from that experience because going into high school and, and were you in like a, a Christian or a Catholic school at all? I was not public school. Okay. You were a public school. Okay. Me too. Mm-hmm. . So how did you take that like revelation and that newness into a public school scenario?

Oh, I was kind of bonkers. I came back and I was like, everybody, like you . Yeah. You can, you can know God. There's a gap between you and him and it's your sin. And like I just. Evangelist on fire. I love that. Oh my gosh. Since that I've developed like a lot more finesse on what this might look like in building relationships, but , So yeah, I came home and like shared the gospel with my, my dinner table with my family.

I was like, Guys, I know, right? Um, Yeah. So then I dove into a youth group and I had never opened my Bible before I was 15 and these kids had like been, you know, since they were three. And I'm like, The book of job, like, what's happening? Like, I don't really know. , Yes. They would like pat me in the head like, Oh Amy, you're so cute.

I hear, I'm like, Well, I don't really know anything. Um, so I then started, I was, I was really thirsty and hungry to understand like, Is this like, what are these 66 books in this ancient text? Like, what's going on here? And so I just, I was hungry and it was interesting cuz the youth group kids were like, blah, blah, blah.

Like, we've known this. And I'm like, No, this is banana. It's like, do you see what God is saying here? You know? So nice. There was a hunger that God put inside of me. To not only share his word but teach it. And that was like slowly developed. Um, I went, it was so fun. So then I went to, um, Bowling Green State University in Ohio, which I actually.

I'm still here in the university town raising my kids. Oh my gosh, that's so cool. It's fun. I, I love the university setting and I got involved with crew. I don't know if you're familiar with Yeah, just prepaid. Yeah. Yep, yep. Formerly known as so I can need to hold up a sign and, um, I, and then I came on staff and I was on staff for 12 years with the crew cuz I felt like it was the only, and this is woven in my story too, but Sure.

It was the only place that I had seen women. Teaching and preaching God's word in the, The Christian. Yeah. Yeah. So Catholic church, there weren't lady priests going on. Yeah. And then, um, what did your grandma think about that? Just sidebar. She had passed when I was like this, this, she passed the summer before I went to Young Life camp.

Yeah. Wow. Well, that's interesting. She cheer me on in heaven right now. But no, we have that connectivity. Yeah, that's really wild. Okay. I know, I know. Yes. So, um, yeah, so I, I came on staff because I thought this is a place that women can teach cuz they just hadn't seen it and they're, they're very like co-lead, co do all the things.

So that was really fun. Um, but man, there are other spaces and places where I have been flat on my face and God stopped me in the track, my tracks, and. Um, was a moment where I had to lay a burden down and experience the freedom. Um, we walked through infertility. Um, my son was six weeks early, so we did the NICU for days and days.

Yeah. And then my oldest son, I have three. He was diagnosed with Crohn's disease four years ago. Okay. I don't know much about what that is. Yeah, I didn't either. I was like, What's happening? But my doctor was like, Do not Google it. And I was like, Um, okay. Thank you. That so. I wish I wouldn't have cuz it was like horror.

Yeah, of course. Oh my god. Crohn's disease is a, um, inflammatory bowel, um, disease. So it's something that you, it's an autoimmune that you have to manage for the rest of your life, so, Okay. Okay. A lot of like gut work and health and Yeah. Okay. Yes. So we have flipped our pantry. My new book in March is all about this.

Oh yes. Okay. This is a big thing. Yeah, it's a big thing. Yeah. It's connecting the idea. Why we need a spiritual diet change in watching the diet change. My son went through. Come on. I know, right? It's so necessary though. Necessary women specifically, which has been a huge part of, you know, your ministry.

Women need that so desperately, and we do, if we think that we aren't stewarding not only our kids' spiritual lives, but also their physical being. Like, we want them to be a vessel for the Lord, but their landscape design connected to their pantry is a massive element to that. We're literally giving them foggy brains.

We're giving them leaky gut syndrome and no, no. Mom is intentionally doing that, I don't believe. Right, right. But it's lack of knowledge. It's lack of knowledge. I mean, oh boy. When we, when they like immediately, Um, describe. Humira to to hit Crohn's and put into remission. Yeah, I looked into that and it's un in our insurance, it's underneath chemotherapy.

And I was like, That's a heavy hitter. Is there any other thing we can try? First he's 11. Like what are we doing? Um, and they were like, There's no research to support that diet, would've anything to do with Crohn's disease. And I thought, Call something on that. It's like, so we found a diet that changed his life.

I mean, three days in the diet, he had no pain. He gained back 15 pounds that he had lost and. Eight weeks. Yeah. I mean it was, it was a game changer. Substantial. Wow. Substantial. So it's been on it for four years. It was, You're in like all the support groups to help other moms like realize this. I mean this is like, oh, this, it calls a lot why you guys are listening to the podcast, but it's also super important that we recognize these things.

Yes. Not just Crohn's disease. That that is a huge element of need. Yes, exactly. Yes. And our, our faith was woven in there and I mean, even. Relationship and communication and trusting guide. Like there was a face off that my husband and I had in the backyard. I was like, Can do, You know what I'm saying? I was like, Can we try this diet?

He's like, You wanna not do what the doctors say? And I was like, Yes. I want a, I wanna try a different p conspiracy theorist now did on the,

Yeah, and it was like, I mean, we were at ads for a while and. He finally came over to my side. I said, Can we just try it right first? Let's, is the worst gonna happen? What do we go right into medication that can essentially ruin more and make him reliant on that and his body will build up, can build up a resistance to these things, please.

Hundred percent. Yeah. Yeah. So I, he, my son is amazing. He's been four years on this diet and. It's sweet. It's built our faith. It's been a game changer. It's, it's been quite a journey. So all to say I have found God in the everyday, ordinary life, like in the pantry, in my kitchen, like I have found him there.

You know, like, um, there's just been sweet moments where he's. Provided. I'll tell you this story. So after my son was diagnosed, we went to the apple orchard like we do every fall. And we got like these hu this huge like, like a huge bushel maybe, is what it's called. Yeah. You got it. Inside countertop and I, the next few weeks we started our new diet, it's called the s cd diet, and we're, we're, I'm cooking up chopping, I'm doing all.

Bone broth, whatever, and I'm shoving this bag of apples to the side, like I'm annoyed by this bag. It's annoying . I'm like, What are we gonna do with this bag? I'm, What's happening? So I turned the page like the second week after we've had these apples, turn the page and it said, For the next phase of the diet, you can start to give him cook down.

Pureed apple sauce. Yeah, you'll need a lot of apples as they really cook down. I looked at that bag and I was like, Ooh, God, you provided for me. I was bullying your gift of grace. I was shoving it around and you had it ready. So good. Just ready and how, what, like, that's such a simple example, right? But like this is, is evident and happening in our lives every single day, all the time.

And the manner that he brings is just, can we open our eyes? To the blessing. Yes. Can we do that? And it, it feels so abstract, I think in society, especially for me, like my lens is like through the marketplace, people not really paralleling that in their business endeavors. Mm-hmm. or in their finances connected to that.

And everything is like very, um, me centered, my control, my ability, what can I do? And I'm sure even in that moment there was a conflict of like, I can fix this. Right. As a drama for. Right? Mm-hmm. and also like a, God help me , but all like, there's a kind of this, this both and, and so what a beautiful, simple example for us to all like recognize what is the apple bag that you keep pushing around.

Yes. Not thinking the Lord for, and it ends up being the exact thing that you need. Oh, that's so good. Yes. I'm always like, what's the annoying. Yeah. In your life right now. It's actually amazing. Like, come on, let's look for it. Oh on. I love it. I love that. Yeah. . So tell me, cause I know Crew, um, is, is specifically pouring into college age students.

Mm-hmm. in where in that timeframe were you then submitting and supporting the you version? Right. So, um, I was on staff for 12 years with crew and then took a break, had my third baby and my hu and my husband, the Lord was like, You need to stay home. Like you need to really like be home with the three kids.

Sure. Which was super hard. I wanted to do big things. Um, and then , you know, and then my pastor called and said, Would you come on staff with our church? Would you join the teaching team? Um, will you. Thing, and our church is actually on campus, so it wove greatly with our, the community and the campus. Oh, cool.

Yeah, so we had students coming. So when I started teaching, um, I mean, how did the u version, I mean, Oh, I submitted some U version plans. Yep. Um, and I got rejected. They said, No, you, um, , they're like, We're not accepting new plans for a year and a half. Sorry. Like, we don't. And I was like, Cool. Cool. Sounds good.

Thanks. Right. And then once I started writing, um, and Tindale picked me up for Grace. Looks amazing on you. They had asked, did you have any like dreams or ideas or thoughts? I was like, I would love to write for you version. They're like, Oh, no problem. Like we can like try to get this connection going.

Sounds good. Wrote plans, but this is fun. After the plans were out for like two years, you version. Reached out to me and they said, Hey, we're gonna start this like two minute story of the day. We think you would be great. Do you wanna teach? And I was like, This is a big, like what the U version is like everywhere.

Like 500,000 downloads. I could say , every country in the world. Like what do we, I was like, Do you have the right person? Like I'm Amy and belonging Ohio. Like what? ? That's so funny. So yes, so submitted and went from there. So, Just like these small doors, you know? Yeah. Like it's just one step after another.

It's never this like, like, well, and it's like it goes back almost like what you were saying about the apples. It's like it was a desire of your heart. You were obedient in reaching out. Even when you did, and even with the rejection, God was like, No, no, no, just wait there. Just wait for you. Right. And it's not just the plans, it's more, it's this teaching opportunity and that's.

Exceedingly abundantly. More than we could ask Oprah. Imagine. He's like literally sitting there. I love it. Brings me to that imagery of, of Jesus holding the big, big teddy bear behind him. And the little girl has the tiny little teddy bear. Yes. And she's like, I don't wanna give you my teddy bear. And he's like, Yeah, but if you give that little thing to me, wait till you see what I have behind my back.

Yes. And there's a moment where that exchange is gonna happen. And just like the rejection occurred with the app Experie. Um, there, you're gonna be empty handed for a moment. Yes, there's faith in that action. You're not gonna immediately receive right when that happens. And so there is that like exchange time and that that forbearance or self control element comes into play, and that is, That is so hard.

Oh, it's so hard. The, the waiting. Mm-hmm. and the trusting and the hoping and trying to not grasp for control and make it happen. Yep. Yep. And that's hard. Probably most guilty of that, for sure. And, uh, because I'm good at it, to be honest. And, you know, that's a gift from God. And if I don't steward that well mm-hmm.

what ends up happening in my desire to control or fix or create or build is I get burnt out. Yes. And there's the, the conversation of rhythms of grace. No different in motherhood. No different than in your, your role through your faith and exploration is like, god's like, no, like sit and rest with me. Like be alongside an tandem of me because my pace, you're not gonna burn out.

My yolk is, is light, right? Yes. And boy, I forget it off too often cuz I am hard headed. I am with you girl much. That's terrible. But I'm like, God, I'm sorry. I'm in repentance often, God, I just like living there , and I'm good with that. I'm totally ok. My book title always Becoming is with Intention. Yes. Yes.

No perfect people in on this podcast. No. No. Yep. So good. So Amy, like in your biblical knowledge and in the cultivation of that, I'd love to know two things. One, I'm really curious about having been developed through the Catholic. In the Catholic church, how has that like shifted or, or been different for you in how you now serve in the way that you do in the doctrine that you do?

Yeah, so I would say when I grew up Catholic, I, um, it was just sort of part of my family life. Um, and I, it was just like here and there. We weren't. It always going to church. Okay, so, So even following my faith into a different church context, um, I felt like I was taking it with me and just enhancing what was, was, was there and what really spoke to me and how I'm wired.

Um, because now I'm even noticing that yes, I love the loud praise. My husband is, is our worship leader. And yes, I love like, oh, It's so fun. Like I love all that, but I also am longing for some quiet and contemplation and some of like what the desert fathers have taught us. And so it's interesting, um, how our faith can e flow in really walking behind Jesus and listening to what he has next for us.

Right. Yeah, and I think, you know, a huge element to that is just the exploration of right there, curiosity, right? Yeah. There can't be. There can't be a stagnancy, even though I'm sure that there's seasons of people feeling like lull and that waiting like we were even speaking to of like, God, when is this thing that I've been praying for gonna come to fruition?

But I think when we sit in that space of like waiting versus like applying or seeking, we end up real, like we end up just circling in our head the thing we only know in yester. And not the new version that God is literally trying to reveal and unveil to us in this new season. Yes, Yes. I So talk us, like, what does that process look like for you intimately as you prepare for people and even as you just walk out, you know, motherhood and, and being a wife and being a servant in the, in the church and being a wife to a worship pastor, that's a thing in and of itself.

Um, cuz there's a lot that goes into that. Mm-hmm. . So talk to us through, Seeking that, like really wanting to know more from the Lord, reading even same scripture and it revealing something new to you in a different season. Right? Yes. I mean I, One of the ways my husband and I used to fight about this as a worship leader, he really connects to God through song Sure.

Like singing and song. Sure. And I connect to God through his word, um, in a really specific way. I feel like just what you said, I can read something. The second time, third time, fifth time, it's new to me. Like there's something new. And my hope is always like, can I, first of all, I wanna like, I always forget God is gonna meet me in his word.

He just is. It's alive and active and it doesn't return void. It goes out and does what God wants it to accomplish. Right? And it's doing something in me. Um, so I, lately I've been trying to practice. Just five minutes of silence and solitude a day. Mm. Um, and I write about this in my next book, These practices that can be really hard to do, like we're not.

I'm not good at silence and solitude. Right. It's crazy. No, it's not practice. It's not taught very well. It's not it's example very well . No. I want you, Amy, to just start going live on social media. Look at the camera, silence , and they'd be like, They're like to refresh. Like what? sit there. Just like, that'll be a really great social Yeah.

Right. , No, nothing. I know, I, It's not taught. You're right. And it's so good to explore some contemplative prayer and like just sit there and, and what I'm finding too is if I, if I am quiet. And I have the word open and I just sit and wait. I mean, sometimes. I feel like my brain is spinning and I have like thought monkeys that I have to like gather and it's like a circus.

Other times I really feel like even just one, one sentence to repeat one word. Even like the other day, Psalm 62 8, like pour out your heart. Before the Lord. Mm. Like he is a refuge. Mm. And which is so beautiful. Like I can pour it out because he's a safe place. He's a refuge. He's not, he's going to hold it.

He's not going to run me over with what is in there. Um, and just really sitting in the words and reimagining what that scripture can mean for me right here. Getting quiet and a thing. The thing about practicing just five or 10 minutes of silence is that I have to trust God to take care of running the world while I'm not

Right. That's so true. For those 10 minutes, no will happen. I have things to do way my kids are gonna spill something. Yes, absolutely. But are the emails the to-do list, like all the. It drives. It like literally makes me like break out a little bit, like five minutes, right? I have to literally, Amy build sometimes on my Mondays and Tuesdays pee breaks in my schedule, which sounds absurd.

I'm with you, legit. I will keep going and then I'm uncomfortable and irritated. Why? Cuz I have to use the restroom. Hey, it's terrible. So I have a couple questions because I've heard like so many different forms of mindfulness and meditation and manifestation. It's all there. Yes, Yes. Right. All God's idea, by the way.

Mm-hmm. , don't let the woo woo win. Right. Um, is this knowing that. . Um, oftentimes when we are going to sit before the Lord, we're going with, uh, either a request or even an element of gratitude. Yes. And yet I've been told that if you're practicing actual silence, it's not you coming with any idea or preconceived idea.

It's actually you just coming and just like, literally just be quiet. Yeah. And I find that. I don't even know that I've ever cleared my brain enough to do that for myself, let alone to come before the Lord. So for sure. How like is there a how I know how right. OK. Breath work. Maybe. I know. So I can have a hard time with that idea of like, I'm with you, like coming and I have all this in my brain, right?

That God cares. Like truly he cares about it. Um, first Peter five, seven says he cares about it. And so I have these four prompts are up on my Instagram right now that you can kind of work through in your silence and journal where I just start with God, I feel all the feeling words like what am I feeling?

Yeah, what's, what's here? God, I feel, um, and then God, I need, and to name what you need in that quiet. I think it's powerful for us as women specifically cuz I think we have a hard time saying what we need. Yep. So true. And we, we definitely don't vocalize it when we even know what it is. No. And then it's everybody else's fault cuz they haven't done the thing that we need, that we never vocalized.

Right. That was in always like, I cannot read your mind. Right, right. I see your face is cockeyed and. Trying to get there. What are you asking? We ask this of our kids all the time. Yes. What are, What do you need? What's your question? Is what we say to our kids all the time. What's your question? They're like, Oh no.

Okay. To even teach that, Right. To teach them to identify that need to notice and name the need is I think a huge practice for us. So I feel I need. Those two are an like an eye centered, but it's okay. Like we can pour out our hearts before the Lord. He tells us to, like that's there. Mm-hmm. . And then the last two kind of flip the script to God, like, help me.

So I've talked about feelings and my needs, and then I say, God, you are. And I try to name some. Part of his character that relates to my need right now. Like you are Jehovah Diary, you are the guy who provides Cuz I need you to step in . Yeah. Or whatever. Say this out loud. So the last thing I wrote down is accurate, right?

Yes. So even naming his character, you know, shifts my perspective right there in the middle of my living room. I can start to look at him. And then the fourth one is, God, thank you. Cause it's hard for me to get to gratitude if I have. Feelings and thoughts and worry, and that's, I don't, I don't know if God asked us to like, push it aside.

He wants us to come to him with it. Yeah, it's really good. That's really good. And, and to know that he cares about that and every element of that. Yes. Is it, it. then we don't come carrying shame. Exactly. And I think, uh, you know, one of my missions and main, main mission in both personally and professional development is like to obliterate shame and activate purpose.

And I don't feel like if we are constantly hiding behind shame that we can actually ever activate our gifts the way that God wants them to be. Because we're not being fully realized in him. Yes. And in through him. Yeah. Oh. And so I love that. Hope people, I feel I need. Mm-hmm. you are. And Thanksgiving.

Yeah. God, thank you. Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . Yeah. I love that. So they can go to your Instagram right now and they can get these journal prompts and practice Okay. Alongside you. All right. I'm gonna try it. That feels good. Feels like, Okay. I read this check box, I'm like, what do I need to do? Yeah. Yes. Hold my hand.

Yeah. I think simultaneous. There's also just like, What if, what if it wasn't any of that? Like what if there was just this exploration? Uh, and you know, we talk about being all the time. Mm-hmm. , I'm terrible at being, I'm, I'm, I'm really good at being a daughter of the Lord. I figured that out in my identity.

I know that that's the precursor to everything that I do. I'm so grateful. And yet my Martha comes out every day , but she'll like me some Martha. And so it feels like a merry activation in the way that we're gonna be sitting with the Lord. And I just really believe that if we can practice this more, myself included, I'm raising my hand here.

Mm-hmm. as an opportunity and a conviction point in this podcast is for us all to practice this more and for it to become the habit, not in a habit. Check this box you've accomplished. Thing, but in a, a ritual of practicing our faith. Yes. Jesus did it. Jesus did it. And the good thing about this is we're saying start small, like five, five minutes even.

Yeah. You know? And I always feel like. I mean, the first time I did it I was like, uh, I mean, I might was, my brain was everywhere, but in the last like two years, I look forward to just, I try to do it for 10 minutes before my kids come home. I work from home. Am I write from home? Timing matters. Timing matters.

And so I think, okay, I'm gonna spend these 10 minutes. With a warm cup of something. I'm gonna be by the window. I'm gonna, I'm gonna remember that God is gone, . I'm gonna put everything down. And I remember that when my kids come to the door, I'm gonna look at their eyes like all, all of the, like quieting of the busyness for just a little.

It's really, really good and I like it in that time. That's not a time that I. I would choose. Right. I would think to put it in with my morning routine. Yeah. Or put it in at the end of the day. Um, but I really like it in the middle of the day as like that like sound checkpoint to come back into alignment cuz otherwise that busy can totally run in and wreck havoc on your family time later.

Oh, for sure. And I ne I can. Feel it when that happens. I was reading this morning, um, it's a book called The Two Day ceo, and so it's talking about like only being a CEO running your business for two, two days a week, which seems impossible. But anyway, his introduction, I only got to the intro, so I'll let you know.

Yes. He says, uh, he says that you. Have to practice like an element of silence in the other pieces of your week. Otherwise, the busy actually runs into your family time. And if you wanna be a two day ceo, you have to recognize that your presence matters. Even when you're with your family. Being in your flesh and being present are two totally different things.

100%. I can be sitting with my family. Like I was at Taco dinner last night. Taco Tuesday is today. Yeah, but we did it on Monday. Hey. I can be in my head and not actually be present at all, and I just wanna get away from that. So I love infusing it at that hour. Yes, yes. That, that practice of presence, it's huge.

I know. Yeah. Well, and it, the knowing of his presence. Right. And so talk us through kind of that piece. Because I know there's like specific methodologies when we're studying the word that you can go through. I know that people are really, I think, seeking to hear from the Lord right now. Mm-hmm. , they don't even know how to do that.

Like what is practicing being in his presence? What does actually his revealing the word to us, even as you're saying, I'm gonna put the word in front of me and something's gonna pop up. Well, what does that mean? Is the word gonna jump off ? Like how? Like literally though, I'm thinking of the people who, who aren't immersed in the Christianese culture of the words then and the language that we're saying.

Yes. What is the presence of the Lord to you? Yes. You know what, lately, um, walks have been really sweet for me where I, I don't, sometimes I put in music and sometimes I don. and I try to connect to God through nature, through the big, big, big sky through the trees. Looking up more. Cuz man, we are so like looking down at our phone, at our feet.

Oh, like we're just, we're so like, and to just like to put my shoulders back, look up, notice name the beauty, and, and ask God to like show up like God. Would you just show me something about yourself today? Or just talk with. I think the idea of just talking with God can feel a little bit funny cuz you're like, it's not like two way, Like, it's not like he.

Um, but like that, the idea of pouring out your heart to him, just like, what would you wanna tell your best friend right now? I just, eh, here's all the things. And sometimes I put my earbud in and there's nothing in there so people don't think I'm crazy. What am I gonna walk? I'm talking to my best friend.

It's hot tip. Yeah. That's awesome. I love that. Cause sometimes I start saying things out loud. Sometimes I Of course, of course. Yeah. But walks, I think walking can be huge. Yeah. Just you're outside, you can connect with nature. Yeah. Um, and then when it comes to seeking God, I mean, I, I went to the listener who is wondering like, I don't know how to do this.

I would say, How are you wired and what do you like? If you like music, can you find some God centered music? Because I'm telling you what scripture is woven through there. And you will find out things about the character of God, that he is faithful and he is good and he is merciful and compassion. You know, like maybe that's how you're.

Or if you're a reader, I would say the book of Psalms, slap d smack dab in the middle of the Bible. . Yeah, that's our open, the very middle of a Bible or go on the version app or anything. The psalm. Start with Psalm one. Read a psalm a day. And when you're reading a Psalm, Find, you know, what'd you find out about God?

And what did you find out about how people interact with God with this song? Some people are downright angry, frustrated, Where are you? God, you've abandoned me. I need you to show up cuz my enemies are right in front of me. You know, like, There's some the solve that's good cause that it goes back to your, I feel, and the recognition of like how are they feeling when you're reading the Bible can be a really good perspective on it's okay that you're mad, it's okay that you're frustrated.

It's okay that you're lonely. It's okay of all of those emotions cuz everyone's felt 'em before. Yes. And so there doesn't have to be isolation in our faith walk. And I think that's honestly something that the church, and I say the church as a collect. It hasn't done really well. When we think about discipleship and we think about really bringing people along for their faith, it's one of the reason I love having the U Virgin app and I love having resources that are in my inbox, is that nobody is, is catering to or not catering to me, it's a choice.

Yeah, And it's a choice. Every time I pick up my Bible and it's a choice every time I go on this walk with intentionality or it's a. Every time I take this five minutes with the Lord and it's not contingent. That's the difference. It's not contingent on somebody else dictating what I should and shouldn't do what I should and shouldn't feel what I should and shouldn't say how I should and shouldn't act because that becomes religion.

Yeah. And that's, I don't think he's in the middle of that at all. We know he is not. In fact, from the Pharisee and Sades example, Mm-hmm. . Yes. Yes. I, I think that too. I think relationship. Think of God as a friend and what would you like to do? Mm. Go on a target, run with God. Like, Let's go . Let's come on, Let's go.

What do we need? You know, like the, the, the Ella like. Having play and fun and that's why I like taking walks. Nature. Yeah. Seeing what you find, like to enjoy that. But yes, the pe I, I think also being with others who are seeking faith and seeking God is really, really helpful. Really sweet. Um, I have a friend in my life, she started to do this and I was, Taken off guard.

And then I was like, I love this. We'd be talking on the phone and then she'd be like, Hey, I gotta go, but will you, Will you stop and pray for me? Will you just pray for me? I need help. And I was like, ok, sure, let's go. Yeah. Like on demand was, It was kinda, It was. It was great. I just felt like, oh, I was like not ready for it, but then I started doing it back to her.

Mm-hmm. and it just felt like this sweet part. Ask, like inviting God in to our daily, like I think I was literally washing dishes on the phone and she asked if I would pray for her, and I was like, Okay. Yes. Like right now. Right now. And that connection has been sweet. Yeah. There's a vulnerability there.

And yeah, to have someone praying for you and being in the everyday parts of life. It's huge. I love that. And I think when it is pre-planned or like you're in a space where you're anticipating, Oh, they're gonna call on me or it's gonna be my turn, or Yeah, she's praying, She's praying like I'm with one eye.

Okay, I'm next. I'm next and ready. I'm queue up. She said that. So I won't say that. I'll go this first. Right. Like literally that happens to the best of us. Okay. And to the least of us all, all of us are inclusive and I love that it's just spur of the moment. I was just chatting, um, with a content creator who literal.

Faith, It's called lit with prayer. I'm not sure if you follow him on social. Mm-hmm. ? No, I will. Vain is his name. And he has an incredible ministry that's just blossomed over the last year, and he just prays. He goes on and he just is like, Hey guys, I just wanna pray for you tonight, and whatever is on his heart.

And he literally told me that his strategy was never content batching because. It seems so inauthentic. Mm-hmm. . And any time that he did that, it never landed and that he just wanted to off the cuff, what was on his heart? Who was on his heart, what did somebody comment earlier that, you know, he thinks is something that they need right now.

And he would speak into so many different people's lives and praying for this person right now. And he would just call it out. And I think it's such an element of desire for me too. It's just. Why do we, why does it have to be perfect? Right. You don't have to know where to put the vow or the art, or the should or the could or the Lord, or, uh, it doesn't matter.

Mm-hmm. like conversation isn't like that. Yes. Yes. And so I, I just love, I love that piece of how prayer integrates with our faith as a predominant way of communicating with the Lord and gets us. Ourselves when we can get outside of ourselves. Yes. Cause I know it's prayer, especially prayer out loud, especially with prayer with your loved ones can be really hard.

Mm-hmm. , do you, you and your husband pray together? Is that something that you had to evolve into through your relationship? Um, yes. It actually became more of a priority when. . Our son was born early. Yeah. Um, we would, so he was in the NICU and we were at my parents' house, which was a mile from the hospital.

And we would go back and forth and we would lay in bed and just pray. And that's been something we do often that night before we fall asleep. I'm like, one of us is like, Will you either pray for me, pray for our kids, or like if there is a kid that is going through it, , it's a no brainer. We're like, We need to pray for our middle right now.

Yeah. Um, so yeah, it's been at night in the quiet. Mm. Yeah, that's really good. And just a, a conviction point for people who are listening, cuz for me it's, it's harder to pray with my spouse in the season of life that we're in. Um, and so I found myself recently sending him voice memos where I'm just praying over him in the middle of that day when I have just like space, um, where I get to be.

And so I'll send him something and he's like, well, That was exactly what I needed or unexpected. And so it's not daily. It could be, um, if I wanted to, but I love right now that it's an element of surprise and that he just knows that I'm thinking about him and that I'm praying for him. And that is, I think, One of, if you wanna talk about intimacy in your relationship, one of the sexiest things that you could do and really prepare for what communication, what the evening looks like, like it just changes the trajectory of the rest of your day when you can do something like that.

Yes, I'm with you. And I love that, Tamara. I think that's so it's like surprising delight in your marriage that Yeah. You know, we're going on 21 years, so anywhere we can like do a little surprise. Yes. I Little scary. It's so you, the kids, like, I fall asleep, my kids are in my bed holding my hand every single night.

I know people tell you shouldn't, but we do. There's seven and nine and I love it. Um, and simultaneous to that, like I don't fall asleep with my husband and so we don't really have. Sacred like space that a lot of people would, especially marriage counselors, would tell me that I need mm-hmm. . But we find it in other spaces based on our, our desires as parents.

Yeah. And things that we didn't have that we wanted when we were little. Oh yeah. And so, We'll, probably my parents or my kids will be in therapy and have to be reparented and all that stuff. Oh, for sure. Yeah, that's fine. It's a given. It's fine. Fine, Right. God's got them. I am trusting, but I do fall asleep praying with them, which is pretty special.

And to hear when I pass that baton on certain nights where one will pray for the other sibling. Oh, that's the best, the best. Oh my gosh. Tell me some of your parenting strategies or tactics or even resources that you present in the home to the kiddos. Um, in the stewardship of, of their faith. Yes. Okay. So my kids are now 15, 11, and eight.

Um, and for years we, we love the Jesus Storybook Bible. Don't know if you're familiar mm-hmm. , I know I'm writing it down. Oh, you, yeah, you're gonna. It's amazing. The Jesus Story book Bible, Sally Lloyd Jones is, um, the one who put it together and I learn something every time. Um, her whole thing is taking like the prominent stories and saying Every story, Old Testament to new whispers, the name of Jesus in some way.

Mm. Oh yeah. So we just read one of those, um, at night and then we, so we, we like , my daughter, she lives like label things, like call them the things and she's like, It's family bible time, everybody. So it's like on the schedule, let's go. It's just like we brush teeth and I'll grab my floor. . Oh yeah, totally.

I love it. It's like a thing. So, um, it's funny cuz I've watched, like I, we still put our. Younger to, to to bed together. Like, like we read together. Then they go in their separate rooms. But, um, I would say like once a week, my high schooler still wanders in, sits on the floor and listens. I love that. Um, and so we read and then pray and then just teaching them like, who do you wanna, Is there somebody in, like, I try to, to do some prompts for them for praying.

Like, is there somebody in your class that maybe is on the outside in some way? Like they're a little, That's good. They feel left out. Like, could we pray for them? And they always, I mean, the stories come tumbling now. Oh yeah. So, so and so and so. Yeah. Um, yeah, cuz we al often ask the question just like, How was your day?

What, you know, how was your day again, how was your day? God, who's like, How are you doing? Right? And we're like, Sorry, God, we forgot to ask how you're doing and what you're trying to teach me in this season and all those things. I think that that's really, I love that prompt in and of itself. Yes, it's huge because I want them to notice their classmates in the marginalized, cuz Jesus came to the marginalized, said, said, mm-hmm.

I'm bringing you in. Like, um, yes. And so even after they pray, I also, I'm a huge fan of, um, let's pray, but if we're the answer to our own prayer, let's, let's do something about that too. And so, Ooh. Yeah. Do you know what I mean? So I'm like, Hey, so maybe you could invite so and so to play kickball with you tomorrow on recess, You know?

Mm-hmm. Just helping them see like we have agency and influence, like we, we can pray and we can also do things. So, um, so that's been huge, I think, to foster that together. Um, and recently we were, we finished the Jesus story Bible. We've, we've cycled through it so many times. I like, love it. Um, and now we're in the Psalms, we're reading, they each have their Bible and I, they were reading a psalm a night and just have, having them underline.

One verse that they like. Out of that song I, I'm teaching, I want them to see the character of God in their own little Bibles. So, so good. And I think what's cool about that is because they're, they're learning about each other even in that process. Like, what, What did you see that I didn't see? Yeah. And that's so interesting that you saw that.

And it only cuz I have a boy and a girl and you, it sounds like you have two boys and a girl. Yep, yep. Sandwich. Yep. Yeah. Yeah. And so there is quite the bickering when it comes to just like, relational boy, girl, like competition. And my daughter's like, I don't wanna be competitive. I don't wanna do that. My hu My son's like, it's a.

And everything is erase. Like, calm down brown. No thank you. Not necessary. Why is he always mean to me? I'm like, I don't know, sis. I don't know. So to do that as an activity, it's like the same. We do something, um, where we do compliments. And we will do it around the kitchen table or the dinner table, and we'll say, Hey, you know, co coop, let's, uh, give everybody a compliment.

What do you, what do you think is the best thing about them? What character or quality do you love about them? What did you notice that they've done? That's something really cool in the last week that made you surprised or grateful. And so we have these conversations and one person goes, and then the next person goes and everybody has that moment in the hot seat of they have to speak.

And also a lot. Receiving because I think we're really bad at receiving and we don't teach that. Come on. Yep. Yes. So it's interesting to watch what it, how it unfolds to their compliments of others and recognizing, like you said, the marginalized in scenarios like that. It's just in a little bit of a different way, but I want them to experience the character of God through that.

Yes. And so I think that there's that extra layer that could be added in for our faith walk. I love. I love that. That's awesome. Compliments, right? I've taken it. I'm gonna take a run. I'll credit you at the dinner table. So good. I mean, that idea of giving, giving and receiving, actually preparing for a conference and the New York Times came out with an article in the spring that was saying the, The Pandemic of Loneliness that is hit to all of us for sure.

That they used, like studies used to show or they, they used to try to combat loneliness. And isolation was like support. But what they're finding is it's not only, um, like giving support, but that there is a giving and receiving that feels like there's this mutuality of connection. And, and I would thought, Yeah, that's the way God.

Built the body that we would absolutely give and receive. Yeah. And that eliminates loneliness. There's, there's community and connection that happens there. So yeah, it's really good. Well, I think of just like even literal body connected to that exactly is if like something wasn't getting access to the blood flow, that thing would literally cut off.

So as much as it's shooting blood one direction, it also has to receive blood for that ever to be the case. And so cycles, yes, that cycle. So critical. I love it mean. Cool. Amy, so much richness here. We could talk for hours forever. This is so much, so much goodness and sweetness. I told her before she came on that like in all of her, her content that she shares and all the writing that she does, I just, I, there's such a sense of his sweetness in you and through you, and that's not often, especially.

Somebody in the public eye, that's not often a word that you see, or a essence that you sense, and so you really represent a character of God's sweetness and I'm, I'm grateful for that in the way that you serve. Yeah. That's kind. Thank you. My pleasure. You guys, I want everyone to have access to your books.

I want them to have access to your ministry, and so inviting women to discover grace. Tell us about, I know you have your podcast and your books. Tell us all the things. Where's the best PO place for them to get? Yes. Um, I love the Instagram. The gram is fun. Um, which my son now calls Instagram. I'm like, knock it off.

What's happening? ? Oh my gosh. I will not repeat that because if I do, my son will totally background. Yeah, don't share, don't share that. So I was like, I don't, I don't know what to do right now. Um, and so funny. So anyways, Instagram I do love. You can find Um, Yeah, she has, Obviously The grace looks amazing on you.

A hundred days of reflecting God's love. We're gonna get our hands on the newest one when it comes out in the spring called Starved. Love the cover of that one. It's gorgeous. Oh, I died. I was like, I'm dead. It's amazing. They did phenomenal. Good. And then what's probably, I mean, I love Chin Up. What is, what's your favorite piece that you've worked?

Oh, you can't, That's like asking your favorite kid, right? Like what are we ? We all have a favorite kid. It's ok. I'm just kidding. I'm sort Just kidding. Seasons, seasons favorites, right? Exactly. Oh man. You know what? I think it's always the one I'm working on. So a starved is done, but I can't wait for it to come into the world because.

I, I just, I think we need a spiritual diet change. I think what we're consuming is not filling us up. We're starving and yeah, what do we doing? I'm super excited about that because I just think about even from a social media, which is where our conversation started, there are so many, um, Amazing preachers and teachers and pastors.

And we, and this is literally in my, my reading this morning in first Corinthians three, it says, and I underlined it. I wanna say it correctly, but it's a, it's got a, um, An exclamation point to it. And this is something that I found really always interesting is like little things like that that you wouldn't you take for granted.

You just read right past it. Cuz we know punctuation and we know grammar, but why would they put an exclamation point there that that means something? And of course I have my mini bible in front of me so I can Yes. You're like, I gotta like search on mini Bible work with me right now. Totally. They're all, all stuck.

Gosh. So it's three, it's first Corinthians three and it is, Uh, so then no more boasting about men. And in my other version it says, So then no more focusing on human leaders. Come on. and I was like, Ah, ooh. So all you influencers out there, uh, who are listening, can you please put him first? Because I believe that that's a call to the marketplace, to the thought leadership, to the content creators, to the social media, digital world, that until we get it right, he's, he's waiting.

To get it right. So let's just not put a precursor to the word, not put a precursor to his presence. Yeah. And I think it's gonna, it's gonna, for such a time as this, it's gonna box. I love it. Rock some people. So starves coming out in the spring. Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . Yes. Yes. Amy, Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Thank you. Oh, you are too. I appreciate it. Thank, You've been so fun. I'm excited to continue to follow along on your journey and learn from you, and I hope you guys do the same. All right, sis, have a great day. All right, you too. We'll see you.

Hey y'all. It's me again. Before you go, let's solidify the flame that was ignited within you today by sharing the spark with your own community. Whether it's mentally, physically, emotionally, relationally, or spiritually. I would love for you to take the step right now by declaring your takeaway. Snap a pick of the episode and share it on your stories.

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