Several years ago, this blog started with a different name. It still has that name if you plug in the old website address (RefineAndRestore.com) but for professional reasons, I changed it to my name which was more easily searchable.
But the heart and mission of this blog never changed.
Sure, there have been a few pivots and side-steps I’ve taken along the way. But for some reason I continue to gravitate back toward this initial message I was given many years ago after asking God for many months in prayer what message He had for me. At the time, I didn’t quite know how to articulate the spiritual growth journey I had been on and the process I knew I would continue to walk out my entire life in a few concise words.
I was driving with my husband one day talking about this desire of creating a website (something he had heard me talk about PLENTY of time before). One with a message and mission that could stand the tests of time. One that I would not get tired of talking about and would encompass my faith as a whole. I had finally sensed some direction a few days before and it continued to stick with me. (Something my husband gently pleaded with me: to wait to share my thoughts until something seemed more concrete, because his poor wife is multi-passionate and has about a bazillion ideas a day and he was a bit tired of hearing about them only for them to change the following day).
Looking out the window at the busy freeways of Southern California that we drove on, I told him what I had been mulling over.
“I keep getting drawn back to this blog name of Refine and Restore. You know, about the refining process I go through everyday–whether it’s learning patience with my kids, repenting from idols in my life, loving you on a daily basis (haha)–and restoring my heart back to the truth of God’s Word and who He really is. I think I’ve always been drawn to before and afters. This would basically be like demonstrating the before and after process of spiritual growth and how God is always working to help us grow spiritually through the refining moments of our life…”
I waited, unsure of his response.
After what felt like forever….”Yeah I like it,” he affirmed. (My husband can be hard to win over sometimes.)
“Really? You do? So, like… do you think Refined and Restored dot com, or Refine and Restore dot com? Or maybe Revive and Restore?….” I trailed off at the possibilities.
“I think I like Refine and Restore.”
I rolled that one over and over in my mind, letting the words decide their meaning. It seemed right. It had a certain truthful ring to it. Excitement surged through me as I decided, “Yeah, me too!”
And that’s how this message initially started!
My passion has never waned from this message, which is surprising since I tend to have an eclectic and varied taste, always interested in trying new things. It’s continued it’s pulse over the years, becoming so much more than I ever anticipated it would be! From a blog, to a podcast, and now… (drum roll please)
… my 4th published work (1st nonfiction book) titled
“Refine and Restore”
will be bound and shared worldwide in less than 12 months with FaithWords publisher!
(I’m also contracted by B&H for a sequel book of Big and Little Coloring Devotional).
To say I haven’t worked hard to get to this point would be lying to you. I’ve definitely worked my tail off to keep growing as a writer and become a multi-published author.
But there’s also a real element of trust in God for many things throughout this process that are out of my control. A belief that this message (that wouldn’t let go of my heart) needs to be read, discovered, and mulled over by you, too. To grow you, inspired you, and ignite your heart to believe in the gifts and passions God’s given you. To believe that God is real and good and vibrant (not boring) and has a beautiful purpose and plan for your life.
Although there are parts of this process I’ve been able to control somewhat (like doing the work of writing and submitting a book proposal) so much of this process has been out of my control (like a publisher deciding to take me on as an author), requiring trust and leaning on Jesus for direction. Fear of failure and rejection has nearly taken me out of the game at times. I’m so thankful now I kept going.
It’s because of you I’m here and I want to thank each and every one of you for cheering me on to keep going! YOU are the ones I’m writing this book for. YOU are the reason I will be staying up late, waking up early, and sacrificing time away from my family in order to pour out words to you in order to help you believe in His love, deepen your faith, and discover your purpose in Him. I also want to thank the nay-sayers, negative nancy’s and those that didn’t believe in me because it made me stronger as I turned back to Jesus for His strength, made me even more sure of my purpose because of the spiritual attacks I felt, and helped me grow into the writer that I am now.
I hope you know this isn’t your typical book. This is literally the life and message God has called me to share which I will be talking about for life.