Don’t We Wish Life Was a Whole Lot Tidier?

I love you guys in this blog community so much. And I hope to heaven it goes without saying that I love my extended family. Lord have mercy, oh so much. But every now and then we are challenged to figure out how to demonstrate a balanced love to all of the above. This is my attempt and it will no doubt fall short of the place I wish it would land. I remember Kay Arthur telling a group at a Deeper Still event (in the Q&A segment) how painful it is to be totally misunderstood by something said or quoted out of context. She said, “If I somehow get my words wrong, haven’t we been together long enough for you to know my heart??” It hit me so powerfully.


My hope is that, if I somehow miss the mark and don’t find that perfect balance between honoring this flock and honoring my family, I hope so much each entity has been with me long enough to know my heart. I have never been more honored by a series appearing on this blog than my beloved sister Gay’s 7 installments. They were, each one, completely genuine and written in complete honesty. And they all still stand as a testament to the inconceivable power, grace, and healing of God.


But her story goes on.


And so do the rest of ours.


And life is hard, the devil is mean, the flesh gets weak, but the love of God stays strong.


I simply write today to say that you will never waste a prayer on anyone around here. We are all flesh and blood, weak in our natural selves, but (many of us) deeply committed to our pursuit of Christ. We’re not playing a game here. He is everything to us. Our joy. Our Strength. Our Refuge when we’re hurting. Our Rock when we’re rocking.


We established this blog with an unwavering commitment to remaining real in our witness and in our encouragement and exhortation. Thus far, we have to my knowledge held onto that commitment for dear life and, goodness knows, that’s a praise to God alone. This post is just an attempt to continue in that vein. We want to stay real with you. And what’s real is that Gay’s story is still being written even amid a painful turn of events and by the faithful God who spoke her name before the foundation of the world.


And my story is still being written. And I know your hearts well enough to imagine that right now you would say, “And mine, too.”


I wish it was tidier but it’s not. Gay has suffered a hard blow. I am heartbroken for her and also just plain heartbroken. One of these days there will be a next chapter from Gay, whether it’s here or elsewhere. It will not negate a single one she’s written. It will simply add to. It also does not negate a single thing I wrote or shared in Mercy Triumphs. I love her so much. I know you love her, too. We do not condemn here. We do not shame. We believe that our God can conquer all, recover all, redeem all, and use all.


I wish we could have it more together around here sometimes, sisters, but we remain completely cast upon our Savior and we live one day at a time. I love you immensely and I thank you for your patience with us. We are works in progress, all of us. Would you be so gracious not to press too hard for more details right now? To tell you the truth, they’re in flux and less than clear anyway. Let’s just leave some space for the beautiful healing mercies of God and let most of our talk take place from our knees.


You mean something to me. Something down deep. I want so much to serve you responsibly.


With much love,









882 Responses to “Don’t We Wish Life Was a Whole Lot Tidier?”

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  1. 51
    Heather says:

    You and your family are precious to our King and to this corner of the blog world. Praying for His mercies to rain down.

  2. 52
    Paula Risius says:

    Sister Beth,

    I hurt for you when you hurt—I don’t NEED details—God knows! But I do want to tell you how Gay’s testimony just blessed my socks off! Her story with Jesus is just getting another chapter. Praying!

  3. 53
    Irene Talaasen says:

    Thank you for your honesty and sharing your struggle. We all have struggles and Our God is able!!! in all of them . Hebrews 4:16 Grace, Grace greater than all our sin!!

  4. 54
    Kali says:

    Praying for her. And for you. And all the other hearts involved.

  5. 55
    holly smith says:

    With full love and acceptance, I pray for you, your team and your dearest ones. On my knees…and knowing full well that God can.

  6. 56
    Gretchen says:

    We love you as dearly as you love us, Beth. You are so precious to us, and your family is, too. I know you know (and I hope Gay knows) that you are not alone in this. I will be on my knees before the throne of grace on behalf of your family. And I am looking forward with great expectation and hope to how our great and faithful Father will work this all out for your good and for His glory. He will have the final word.

    Love and prayers,


  7. 57
    K says:

    “I have seen his ways, and will heal him: I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners.”
    Isaiah 58:18

    Praying comfort and healing over Gay, and your family, Beth. Thank-you for humbling yourself as a servant leader and sharing, even though it was piercingly painful.

    As you so eloquently and wisely brought out in the James study…James 4:6. He gives greater grace. May you experience His greater grace during this trial of faith.

  8. 58
    Lee Keefer says:

    So very sorry to read this. Thanks for trusting us to help to pray. I will be lifing Gay in prayer, also you and your family.

  9. 59
    Sarah Edwards says:

    Psalm 139:7-10

    Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
    If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths ,you are there.
    If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
    even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.

    Love you all!!! We fall down at the feet of Jesus
    xoxo Sarah

  10. 60
    Marissa says:

    Will be praying for the Lord’s nearness to be your good and for courage for you and your family. l’ve been reading through the classic Hind’s Feet on High Places this week and your post makes me think of Sorrow and Suffering accompanying Much Afraid on her journey through danger, tribulation, injury, and all the attacks of her Fearing relatives. May the Shepherd’s absolute nearness and commitment to do the work he has begun give you joy in the midst of grief. M

  11. 61

    Our walk is through the maze of mountains & valleys of life. Part of fearing no evil, is not fearing the judgment of men. One thing that sticks with me, is something i heard in a sermon by Dr. John Barnett…

    Christians are one of the only groups that have a knee-jerk reaction to shoot our wounded.

    We are all a work in progress, and only the LORD knows our hearts – our personalized battles – and already sees us as we will be, at the end of our transformation…

    As someone who has faced a hard (and lonely) battle for the past 15 years, I can attest to the pain of finding myself in the valley, yet again …as well as entertaining cocoon thoughts (feeling so defeated that i curl into a ball & hibernate for a time).

    This week, i’ve been listening to Session 7 (The Kindness & the Goodness of the Lord) of the Living Beyond Yourself study.

    Mrs. Beth, you hit the nail on the head:

    “The Enemy does everything he can to make us quit, and then snarls at us and says, ‘You quitter!'”

    I’ve been called a coward for the past 15 years. Just today, I thought i’d write you to tell you what a revelation this is – so timely – as it is now for Gay.

    I will be praying for her.

    Thank you, Mrs. Beth, for all you have done. You won’t ever know, this side of heaven, what all that is.

  12. 62
    Lydia Patterson says:

    Praying for you and your sweet sister, knowing that God works all things together for our good and praying that in some way He will be glorified in our (ALL OF OUR) imperfections! Love you both!

  13. 63
    Kelly says:

    I love how honest you are…it makes us all relate so well to you and we know you are one of us..thank you for that…your sister reminds us all of our sisters and brothers, our triumphs and our failures…We are all alike living in this tiresome world. I will pray for your team and your sister…

  14. 64
    Amber says:

    Praying for Gay. And you. I know the devastating heartbrokenness of seeing a family member go through such trials. I pray, knowing that the redemption will continue and hoping that as few as possible are hurt in the process.

  15. 65
    kendal says:

    so very sorry. taking a moment to pray for gay. and for you. it takes courage to write what you did today. at my blog, i think if i don’t write it it isn’t true….but it doesn’t work that way, huh?

  16. 66
    Janna says:

    Dearest Gay, Beth, and the rest of your dear family affected… so many of our sisters have said it most eloquently here, so I will just say I am praying for you. Our Redemption stories continue until we are safe at Home – face-to-face with our Saviour. Praying for God’s Victory in your situation. ((hugs))

    • 66.1
      Kristi M says:

      Beautifully written: Our redemption stories continue until we are safe at Home–face-to-face witho ur Savior!

      I needed to read that today!

  17. 67
    1choirgirl says:

    So sorry to read this Beth; I know a bit about Satan’s power, but our Jesus’ power inside us is no match for him! Praying for Gay, you, and your families!!

  18. 68
    Leah Hayes says:

    Dear Gay,
    Somewhere out there tonight you sit. (((((hugs))))) my dear sister. I wish I had all the right words and the right formula to tell you what to do to fix it all. I like to fix things, but some things I just don’t know how fix. Contrary to popular belief even duct tape has limits.

    God isn’t disappointed in you. He isn’t overwhelmed and ready to walk away. Wherever you are at this moment, He Is with you. In Psalm 23 when it speaks about walking through the valley of the shadow of death and that we didn’t have to fear evil, I think He really meant a dark desolate evil place where there was and is real fear and that ominous things cast a shadow over us and all that is around us. It sounds like there is a good chance you are in such a place tonight. And I hope that you see that He is with you there tonight and isn’t going to leave. I hope you are able to sense His presence and that you are able to be comforted right where you are. ((((hugs))))

    Gay, I am asking God now and will continue to ask Him as you come to mind, that He would show you that He is with you where you are. I often pray that God would make things so clear that even I can’t miss it. I am praying that for you. I hope others will join me in praying that for you too. Not only that you will know that He is in your presence, but that He is glad to have you in His presence just as you are this moment. I pray that He will make Himself known to you in some tangible way. You are His daughter and nothing can separate you from His love. Nothing can separate you—not even where you are today and what you are going through—NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING can separate you.

    Gay, I am glad you are part of the siesta community. Nothing about where you are or what you are going through changes that.

  19. 69
    Marjie Scheib says:

    With LOVE Lord I lift up to you, your child, strengthen her as only you can. Guide and protect her under your mighty mighty wing. When it is dark, it is because we in the deepest crevice of your wing.

  20. 70
    Phyllis says:

    Dearest Beth and family, so so very sorry to hear of your hard time, thank you for being honest yet so respectful of your family. You are so right “Life is hard, the devil is mean, the flesh is weak, but the love of God stays strong”. Will be on my knees and praying over this one. sincerely Phyllis.

  21. 71
    Teri Butcher says:

    I lean on the redemptive power of Christ each day, sometimes I fail miserably, but my God never fails. Praying for Gay. Praying for all those who love her. I bless you my sister as you endure this new chapter, praying it ends swiftly, and with an excellent outcome. Much love.

  22. 72
    Tina says:

    You know, those posts by Gale moved me to tears, and made me jump for joy at the greatness of the God we serve. After each installment, I prayed for protection for her. I prayed God would surround her with a hedge of protection against attack and a hedge of thorns to prick her mightily should she fall outside His boundaries.
    I am so sad that she suffered a blow. I know we are not supposed to hate, but I honestly just can’t stand the enemy of our souls. I hate him for robbing us of such joy and stealing some of our most precious members.
    I’m praying for Gale. God love her. Life is so hard, and our enemy is SO MEAN, it’s all grace that any of us survive.

  23. 73
    Diane says:

    Oh Beth!! You know God is with you all, and your sister is a child of the King. We all fall, He’s there to help us when we cry “ABBA!”. I don’t have anything to offer but my prayers and a reminder of Psalm 125:2, “As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surrounds his people both now and forevermore.”
    Diane in Utah

  24. 74
    Kellye says:

    I am praying. Love you.

  25. 75
    Rebecca says:

    Simply beautiful. Not the hard blow or your heartbreak, but in God working through it, because He is.

    Your transparency is sweet and, at times, more than we ought to know. Yet you share it to help us–help us grow closer to the Merciful Jesus you so passionately teach us about. God powerfully uses your testimony–through it, you will overcome–and so will others.

    Prayers and blessings to all.

  26. 76
    Elizabeth says:

    We will be praying for Gay and your family. We love you dearly.

  27. 77
    Rosalie Castleberry says:

    Praying for you and everyone involved. All your Siestas know what a rocky road we are all on. All of us are just seconds—-just inches—–away from taking our eyes off Jesus. When that happens—even for that second—-we are in such peril because we can’t make it by ourselves. We all have our addictions. Just started your prayer book on strongholds today. We are all there. Let NO ONE cast the first stone. Love you and praise God for you every day.

  28. 78

    Lifting all of you up in prayer. Jesus knows and sees, heals and restores. Always.

  29. 79
    Lynne says:

    Oh Beth, thank you for your honesty and transparency . . . my heart breaks for you, your family and especially for Gay. Her powerful testimony stands as strong as I know she will be once again. Sending prayers and HUGS for you both!

  30. 80
    Trinna says:

    I am praying and believing God for you, Gay and your precious family.

    God is who He say He is.
    God can do what He says He can do.
    Gay is who God says she is.
    She can do all things in Christ.
    God’s word is alive and active in her.

    God, give her strength to believe you.

  31. 81
    TraciG says:

    Oh, Beth. I can so hear your heart.

    Last week my mom informed me that a lady who was very integral in my spiritual growth during my h.s. years has been relieved of her duties at the bank she works at pending an investigation that she has been taking money for years. And years. Lots of it. While she served at church in every ministry possible.

    And while on some level I’m frustrated with her and even a little mad, the thing that struck me most, and continues to, is that while my sin may not be embezzling, I have a whole host of them that I give in to each and every day. And to our Holy LORD, they are just as ugly as one of the biggies. I can be all shocked and dismayed that someone I looked up to messed up big time, but God has been impressing on my heart that I need to be a little more dismayed (maybe a lot more dismayed) about my own sin.

    It makes me more and more amazed that He even loves a little bit, let alone enough to pardon us from what we deserve. What a God. And He continues to love us and cover us with Christ’s blood. Praise you Father!

    I’ll be keeping you and Gay and your family in my prayers. Keep that my little home church family in your prayers too would you? The ugliness there is just beginning.

  32. 82
    Rebecca Scott says:

    I don’t usually comment, but I just wanted to say I am heartbroken for you all and am praying for Gay and for you and your family.

  33. 83
    Becky says:

    I printed out every one of Gay’s 7 installments- they are such an encouragement to me. As my family has been praying for a precious one who is in bondage to addiction, we were very moved and encouraged by Gay’s testimony. We will certainly be in prayer for Gay and this hard blow in her life as we continue to pray for our loved one. Our love and prayers go out to you and your family.

  34. 84
    beckyjomama says:

    Oh. My heart breaks for you all. We know that He is still on His throne. I am on my knees before that throne on Gay’s behalf and for all that love her. He is so good to be waiting there, arms open wide and new mercies waiting. SO faithful.

    Gay, you are loved here. You are treasured here. You are prayed for here. No judgement. No condemnation. No guilt – if we tried to throw it, it would just come back into our own guilty faces. We all stumble. This side of Heaven, we all fall.

    And, when we do, He is there. PRAISE HIM! He is so faithful

    Mama Beth, you owe us no explanation. Your witness IS real, it IS true. He is so mightily visible through this ministry – even, and especially, in the reality of the day to day. When you show us that you are really just one of us, it only serves to make us love you more!


  35. 85
    Emily says:

    Amen to the above comment! Beth, your love for the Lord is contagious. I told myself the first time I took one of your classes that I wanted to love the Lord the way you do. I never realized my relationship with Him could be so deep. I stand amazed at how you stand seemingly unshaken by all the “negativity” of the cruel secular world. Then I remembered reading in Psalms 55 this morning when David said…”He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.” Thank you for your witness, your honesty, your transparency, and your heart for the Lord. I will be praying for your family. Love you Beth!!!!

  36. 86
    Nicole Graves-Keller, TX says:

    Sweet Beth,
    Praying for you, your heart and your dear sister. Asking God to comfort,love deeply, and show Himself mightily. Love you and your sweet family
    (Psa 119:50) This is my comfort in my affliction; for Your Word has given me life.

  37. 87
    ULCARDSFAN says:

    Dearest Beth, Gay, Amanda, Melissa, and LPM village,
    I am praying that God’s peace will be especially close to you at this very moment.Thank you Gay for sharing your story with us and thank you Beth for trusting us enough to be so transparent with this “heartbreak”. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted. Thank you Jesus for your mercy and restoration. Much love, Linda

  38. 88
    Lauren says:

    So, so much love to you and to your beloved sister Gay, whom we have come to love, too. I know I have. And honestly, there is no judgment here. I battle my own food addiction and while that’s more socially acceptable than alcohol or drugs, it’s still an addiction and still an idol. Gay, you are just as loved today as you were the day before this last blow. Our hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. We don’t trust in ourselves. We trust in HIM. And HE is your Redeemer…and Mine. And I KNOW that He has redeemed you. And you will still sing forever that Jesus Saves. Because He does. Again and again. Bless you. And bless you, Beth, and your whole family.

  39. 89
    Mary Lou says:

    Praying. Life is hard. God is good and He is good all of the time. There is no pit so deep that God is not deeper still…Corrie TenBoom. Love from another cracked pot who loves God and who believes He is so much bigger than anything we ever face here on earth. Blessings…..

  40. 90
    Monica says:

    “From the ends of the earth, I call to you when I begin to lose heart. Lead me to the rock that is high above me.” (Psalm 61:2) Your authenticity and transparency are a true testament to Christ’s work in your life. He is in control. There is now no condemnation. Praying, crying and believing with you.

  41. 91
    Barbara says:

    You are deeply loved too!


    Please continue to pour out your mercy and grace on Beth and Gay. Give wisdom and peace. Please use the situation for Your good and may You be glorified some how, some way in all of this.

    Please, Jesus.

  42. 92
    Julie Ratcliff says:

    Praying for you and your precious sister! I love the fact that we serve a God that knows what she needs even when we don’t. I truly believe that mercy will triumph in this situation! He is for us and not against us!

  43. 93
    Molly says:

    Love to you, Beth.

  44. 94
    Kathy Wallis says:

    Beth, my heart is broken for you and Gay. May the Lord hold you close. Thank you for trusting us and giving us the honor praying for you. Love you my sister.

  45. 95
    Diane Bailey says:

    I know in my heart that Gay will return from this setback. It is easy for me to encourage you, but you are the one who must live with this each day. You know as well as I do that this setback did not sneak up on God.

    Thought it has setback Gay , it has not setback God. He is still with her. I am praying for her submission to the One who Sits Down by the Father and that she and you, will rest you head between His shoulders. Deuteronomy 33:12

    Love you!

  46. 96
    Bobbie says:

    We need no other details, Beth. I’m heart broken that Gay has been dealt this blow, but know that this family (our blog community) will hold you all in prayer. Our God is amazing and will keep you close. Hugs to the family!

  47. 97
    T Smith says:

    Praying for you and Gay.

  48. 98
    Stephanie says:

    Praying, praying, praying. And believing that our God works everything for good to those who are His.

  49. 99
    Annette says:

    I’m so sorry for another season of despair for your fragile and most loved sister.

    Brennan Manning in Ragamuffin Gospel said, “To live by grace means to acknowledge my whole life story, the light side and the dark. In admitting my shadow side I learn who I am and what God’s grace means. As Thomas Merton put it, “A saint is not someone who is good but who experiences the goodness of God.”

    I don’t think it will ever be neat this side of heaven. But one glorious Day, praise His Name, it will. In the meantime, let us live by lavish Grace. Hugs to you, my friend.

  50. 100
    Sandra says:


    I am so, so sorry. I have an ache in my heart right now, anyone touched by addiction understands well the pain you all are experiencing. There are no words, except the ones to Him on her behalf.

    Prayers for Gay, you, and all those in her circle of influence.

    Thanks for your honesty, but mostly thanks for sharing your love and passion for Our Lord with all of us.

    Love you!

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