How to Rest in a Season of Unbelief

by Ashleigh Beason, LPCA

We all struggle with unbelief in some way, shape, or form: unbelief that God is good in the midst of hardship, that He loves you even when it seems no one else does, that He is faithful in times when we desperately need him to show up, and that He is in control when nothing is going the way you planned it. As humans, unbelief and doubt come naturally but always leave us feeling anxiety stricken and fear oriented.

Rest–a word that today’s society often longs for but not many actually experience. Why is that? Perhaps it’s because our culture is obsessed with the virtue of work, perhaps it’s because balancing all that life brings does not allow for rest, perhaps it’s because everything around us screams, “Now!”

But I often wonder if we don’t spend time resting because we don’t trust God with our time, we forget who He is in the midst of our busy-ness, or because we don’t believe He is who He says He is. We can know intellectually who He is but our actions do not demonstrate that. Hebrews 3 says that the Israelites were “unable to enter (God’s rest) because of unbelief.” This is the importance of believing God is who He says he is, so we can enter into His rest. In fact, the very next verse says “the promise of entering His rest still stands…only to those who have believed,” and isn’t that something we all want to experience? This is a promise, rest.

He is in control when everything seems out of control and not going the way you planned

He is loving even when it seems no one else is

He is faithful when we need him to show up

He is good in the midst of hardship and nothing is going right

Doesn’t that give you a sense of rest and peace?

Rest is something God wants for us so deeply. Rest it is something that was fully experienced in the garden of Eden…uninterrupted time with God, believing in His goodness, faithfulness, and loving nature. But then Adam and Eve started to doubt his goodness, faithfulness, and love so in their unbelief they ate from the tree and fell away from God’s rest and presence. Isn’t this what we all do daily? We doubt one characteristic of God and anxiety creeps in.

We read on in Hebrews 4 that rest is something we have to “strive” for. It does not come easily because it is not what is natural. Unbelief is natural, hurriedness is natural, work is what is natural. But even in our striving it is no mistake that the end of Hebrews 4 about entering into God’s rest is about Jesus who is the only reason we are able to enter into rest with God. This verse reminds us that even in unbelief, hurriedness, anxieties, and fear we can “draw near, with confidence to the throne of grace” to God’s presence, to the place of rest “and he will give us grace in our time of need.” Jesus will meet us in our place of unbelief and doubt and remind of us His character, of His peace, goodness, faithfulness, and love.

The enemy does his best work to make us doubt the most when we live a hurried life so take time this week to rest: to RE-SET, to create a garden experience for yourself, reminding yourself of God’s character and the importance of spending uninterrupted time in His presence. Perhaps rest is what you need most.


Ashleigh Beason, LPCA

Someone I Love Committed Suicide How Will I Survive?

by Donna Gibbs

As the struggles in our world continue to escalate, so does the rate of suicide. What used to be only occasionally heard of has now become an epidemic. It is a rare person who has not in some way been impacted by suicide. For far too many, suicide has hit too close to home. It’s personal now.

Some of you reading this blog right now feel that your world has stopped. Someone you love has committed suicide. You can hardly process this tragedy. And you don’t know how you’ll ever survive.

While I can’t possibly cover everything related to processing the complexities of a suicide in the confines of this space, I will address three issues that often times create a challenge for those left behind.

1) Because the ramifications of suicide are so wide-spread, we think of suicide as the most selfish act a person could take. And while it is true that the ripple effect of suicide is immeasurably enormous, it is important to understand that the person who takes their life is not intending to be selfish. Your loved one didn’t intend to bring you harm. But their thinking was irrational, and their judgement warped. Whether they made an impulsive choice, or one that was well-thought out, their intention was simply to get their pain to stop. They felt trapped by something – a mental illness, a crisis, a diagnosis. In their mind, suicide was the most reasonable solution. Clearly, they were unable to consider all of the consequences to those around them. But to conclude they were just being selfish is likely an inaccurate and incomplete assumption.

2) Those who lose a loved-one to suicide have great concern about eternal consequences. “Is suicide the unpardonable sin? Is my loved one in hell as a direct result of taking their own life?” The answer is no. The bible is clear that the only unpardonable sin is the rejection of Christ. Suicide is not a rejection of Christ, though it is evidence of a critically incorrect conclusion regarding Christ’s love and power. Yes, suicide is a sinful choice; one that can be forgiven.

3) Guilt is the most common emotional experience I’ve seen in those who have lost a loved one to suicide. If you have recently lost a loved one to suicide, you are naturally analyzing your most recent conversations with them. You are also picking apart your responses and comments. Your actions and inactions. When something unthinkable happens, we naturally look to place blame. And with a suicide, the easiest place to put that blame is sometimes with ourselves. We question ourselves, “Why didn’t I see this coming? I should have .” (You fill in the blank). Guilt is a relentless bully driven by “What if’s” and “Should have’s”. And when it comes to suicide, it is a false guilt that is experienced. Beating up yourself may seem easier or more honorable than feeling anger at your loved one who took their life. But the reality is this: you would have never handed them that gun, or given them those pills. You would never have made that choice for them. They made the choice. Therefore, the responsibility for that choice is theirs. Not yours. As painful as this is, allow them the responsibility for the choice they made. And release yourself from the responsibility of a choice you would have never made for them.

If you are struggling in the aftershock of a suicide, and contemplating suicide yourself, please reach out for help. The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. In addition, there are Survivors of Suicide Groups located all over the country. You can also reach out to a trusted friend, pastor, or professional counselor. You don’t have to walk this journey alone!

To learn more about how to cope with the tragedies of life, visit: www.becomingresilientbook.com


https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/EB6yiiWFhyMSy2BTpJMGOQ74vG8pmHwQblN-ipL4KLHyhBuek6LqZVammowmeF0Lct4k_kkM3BTlfeFyU5j3j3Q7heqfvK2yb5diuNC0R4TSyasgM9JllZ6T9n5pvDLqu_GOrS4dspFV9oWDuw

Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. 

Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.

Marriage or Relationship Challenges?

Dealing with marriage or relationship challenges? Donna Gibbs was recently invited to write an article for Focus on the Family on this very topic. Follow the link below to read the article, and learn more about how insecurities might be impacting your marriage (and what to do about it!) 

https://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/marriage-challenges/how-to-stop-being-insecure-in-a-relationship

For more helpful information just like this, follow us on fb @summitwellnesscenters or sign up for our free weekly blog and newsletter.

“The Only Constant In Life is Change…”

by Donna Gibbs

“The only constant in life is change”. We’ve all heard that phrase. Oh, how painfully true it is! Our lives are an ongoing process of change. Our bodies age daily. Circumstances change. People come and go. Some changes we welcome. Most we dread.

When I consider change, I often think of the caterpillar. This creature experiences the greatest transformation of any other creature I can consider. I’m not sure why God designed it this way, but the poor caterpillar experiences a seemingly painful process that involves it’s digesting itself. Yuck! Actually, as we follow the caterpillar’s process, we learn that it is a beautiful metamorphosis resulting in a picture- perfect butterfly. Who would have thought that the disgusting transformation inside a mysterious cocoon would result in something so miraculously and beautifully unsuspected?

Perhaps you’re feeling like you are in your own version of a cocoon recently. You know that change is on the horizon, but you fear what is to come, and you don’t like the growing pains you experience along the way. You feel like you are being “digested,” but for no good purpose! Let me assure you, if you are cooperating with God, your painful transformation has great purpose, and the result will ultimately be as breathtaking as a magnificent, newly released butterfly.

Friends, let’s trust God’s process for change. We fear change because we doubt. Trust is the answer. If God can transform a simple caterpillar into a unique butterfly, He can be trusted to guide our process of metamorphosis as well!


https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/EB6yiiWFhyMSy2BTpJMGOQ74vG8pmHwQblN-ipL4KLHyhBuek6LqZVammowmeF0Lct4k_kkM3BTlfeFyU5j3j3Q7heqfvK2yb5diuNC0R4TSyasgM9JllZ6T9n5pvDLqu_GOrS4dspFV9oWDuw

Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. 

Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.

Can a Secret Make you Sick?

by Donna Gibbs

Can a secret make you sick? 

You bet it can! Sometimes a family or an organization keeps a secret… and it makes them sick. Sometimes an individual keeps a secret… and it makes them sick. A secret is anything held in the dark that carries shame or fear. The resulting sickness is one of an emotional, physical and/or spiritual nature. 

Secrets keep us stuck! Why? Because where there is a secret there is also oppression. The enemy lurks among our secrets. Consider some of these examples: 

Maybe you were sexually abused as a child. You may have been threatened with harm if you told the truth. The secrecy has given the enemy tremendous space to shame you. To confuse you. To torture you with disgusting images and memories. 

Maybe you had an affair. You’ve kept your secret silent for fear of repercussions. You work diligently to protect this secret from potential exposure. But the truth rings loudly in your own mind as you experience the pangs of regret. 

Maybe you struggle with an eating disorder. One of the “rules” of the eating disorder is that no one know about it. So you cover your restricting and you purge in secrecy. No one knows the lonely prison you are in. 

Maybe you had an abortion years ago. You’ve never even uttered the word out loud, or even in the silence of your own mind. You can’t. The word itself makes you sick to your stomach. You avoid anything related to the word, and intend to take this secret to your grave. But there are certain dates and seasons of life in which it is becoming harder to run from your secret. 

Secrets certainly make us sick. They invite anxiety as we live in fear of being exposed. These secrets also invite depression as we live with unbridled shame. The silence of the secret is deafening. A secret can become sickeningly overwhelming and torturous. 

But when God reveals truth, and a secret is exposed in a healthy manner, the enemy’s power is chained, and freedom can begin to be unleashed. 

If you are carrying a painful secret, it is likely preventing you from becoming resilient. You don’t have to shout the truth from the mountain tops, but a conversation with God about the truth is imperative. If you’ve felt shame in your secret, you may have never even had a conversation with God about this issue. 

You may also feel it necessary to share this secret with a trusted counselor or pastor. I encourage you to take this step. Exposing your secret to someone you trust will feel terrifying. It may make you cry. It may even make you sick. Much like the ripping of a band-aid, your disclosure may sting, but the sting will diminish with the guidance of a trusted professional. This disclosure will also likely unleash some of the freedom that you’ve always thought was out of reach. The enemy no longer will have the same leverage to oppress you, and you can begin the process of taking your life back. 

Don’t let a secret keep you stuck or make you sick. Today is the day to begin your journey to wellness! 


Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. 

Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.

Categories

ALL POSTSACCOUNTABILITYANXIETYBECOMING RESILIENTBIBLE STUDYBULIMIACHANGECHRISTMASCHRONIC CHALLENGESDEPRESSIONEATING DISORDERSGRATITUDEGRIEFHEALTHHOLIDAYSHOPEINTERNETLUSTMARRIAGEMARYMINISTRYNEW YEARPARENTINGPEACEPORNOGRAPHYPURPOSERESOLUTIONSRESTSCHOOLSILENCING INSECURITYSUICIDETHANKSGIVING

Recent Posts

“The Only Constant In Life is Change…”

Feb 15, 2019

Laughing Together, But Crying Alone. What About My Grief?

Feb 1, 2019

Be Still

Jan 25, 2019

Laughing Together, But Crying Alone. What About My Grief?


by Donna Gibbs

I remember when my youngest son was 1 year of age. Like all young ones, he expressed all emotions equally…he responded at equal pitch whether his emotion was sad, happy, hungry, mad, etc… Isn’t it interesting how the older we get, the less balance we have in expressing emotion? We are socialized to express positive emotions loudly, but negative emotions are to be suppressed. Think of our cliché, “Laugh and the whole world laughs with you. Cry and you cry alone”.

Yet, we know that there is a time for every event in life…and grief is just as normal as eating and sleeping. Grief is inevitable this side of eternity. ALL of us will face some form of grief in this lifetime. That grief will represent some type of loss: death, divorce, job loss, infertility, betrayal, trauma, etc… When grief does hit, we are likely to experience a variety of jumbled and unpredictable emotions: confusion, apathy, sorrow, rage, guilt, jealousy, helplessness, loneliness, sadness, disappointment, fear, inadequacy, rejection, distrust, etc.. In fact, you are likely to feel emotions that you’ve never experienced before; and to a depth you didn’t previously know was possible. You may even feel that you are going insane. Recovery from grief to growth doesn’t require a special skill or degree….it just means processing what you feel when you feel it. This takes time, and in some situations may require the help of a professional. The old cliché, “Time heals all wounds” is simply not true. Sure, time can sometimes take the edge off of our pain, but you and I have both seen some old, bitter people – time alone did not serve them well. It is what we do within a period of time that brings healing.

Here are a few additional tools that may be of help:

1) Journal – dedicate this to your journey to growth

2) Connect with others through church and support groups

3) Avoid premature decisions

4) Eat nutritiously, Rest, and Exercise (grief is stressful to the immune system)

5) Talk about your losses and begin building new memories

6) Communicate with (and nurture relationships with) the loved-ones you still have

7) Don’t confuse feelings with facts. Believe against the grain, cling to God when you can’t see what’s ahead and you don’t feel like clinging.

8) Be careful with the question “Why?”. This often leads to an unproductive quest, and a quick trip to depression. Replace this quest with the question, “What now?”

If you are concerned about someone else who is grieving, make sure you listen, without condemnation. Allow them to grieve. Share memories and stories – it is helpful to them to be able to talk about their losses. Give practical help with chores and daily demands. Offer a touch when there are no words. Don’t use clichés or pat theological answers – those are rarely helpful, and often hurtful and offending. Check on them during painful holidays and anniversary dates. In the end, don’t underestimate the simple importance of your presence and relationship with them. God has created us to share burdens together!

For more information regarding bouncing back from life’s hurts, check out Becoming Resilient, written by Donna Gibbs, at https://www.becomingresilientbook.com.

Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. 

Categories

ALL POSTSACCOUNTABILITYANXIETYBECOMING RESILIENTBIBLE STUDYBULIMIACHANGECHRISTMASCHRONIC CHALLENGESDEPRESSIONEATING DISORDERSGRATITUDEGRIEFHEALTHHOLIDAYSHOPEINTERNETLUSTMARRIAGEMARYMINISTRYNEW YEARPARENTINGPEACEPORNOGRAPHYPURPOSERESOLUTIONSRESTSCHOOLSILENCING INSECURITYSUICIDETHANKSGIVING

Recent Posts

“The Only Constant In Life is Change…”

Feb 15, 2019

Can a Secret Make you Sick?

Feb 8, 2019

Be Still

Jan 25, 2019

Be Still

by Pam Nettles

Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.
Psalm 46:10

Many years ago I encountered a period of multiple stressful events that led to a season of depression and anxiety. I felt stuck, helpless, and often hopeless, and wanted God to answer my prayers on my time frame…immediately, and in my way! I was exhausted from trying to fight the battles, many of which I had no control over to begin with! It was during this time that I learned the meaning of the term ‘synchronicity’. Simply put, everywhere I turned I would hear or see messages consistent with Psalm 46:10. After repeatedly hearing this message I began to meditate on this verse, as well as several others, that God laid upon my heart during my quiet times with Him.


As I read, prayed, and meditated on His Word I learned several meaningful concepts. ‘Be still’ is a verb. In today’s performance-based society we are better ‘do-ers’ than ‘be-ers’. We think about ‘being still’ in a negative connotation; to do nothing, be avoidant, or as being lazy. (Which is difficult for those like me who want to have control of our circumstances.) Actually ‘being still’ is quite the opposite. To ‘Be still’ requires taking an active stance of giving up our desire for control in order to quiet our hearts, minds, and souls, and to have faith and trust in God to accomplish His will for our lives, in His perfect timing! (Jeremiah 29: 11-14)


Often, the remainder of this verse gets overlooked. The second part of this verse reminds us that God is all-powerful and to be honored, praised, and respected. When we give up desire for control and lean upon God we acknowledge that we believe that He will do what He says He will do and that He will give us wisdom and discernment to direct our paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)


During this season I intentionally tried to remove the unproductive worries and distractions that were keeping me from focusing on God’s truths. I began expectantly looking for opportunities to ‘be still’ with him. One day I was picking my niece up from preschool and I noticed a prayer garden near the entrance of her school. I took the opportunity to walk through the gates and stood in awe at what was before me! On the brick wall of the garden was a concrete tablet engraved with the verse Psalm 46:10. I stood there for a few quiet minutes and then quickly took a photo of the wall to show a friend that had been encouraging me during this time. Several days later, I printed the picture to give to her and I was so disappointed when I noticed there was a large shadow cast on the verse! Of course the perfectionist in me wanted to retake the picture but I couldn’t as the location was several hours away. So I apologetically gave the print to my friend and expressed my disappointment about the shadow spoiling the picture. Immediately she looked at me and said, ‘Don’t you see? The picture is perfect!’ God had still another message for me through that experience. Immediately as my friend commented I heard the ‘still small voice of God’ reminding me that he was hiding me in His shadow; under the protection of His wing!


When we lose focus on God’s promises and commands, or make decisions without prayerful consideration, we waste countless amounts of energy; leaving us weary and overwhelmed. We experience anxiety instead of peace. We may even put ourselves in unhealthy or dangerous situations. During times of waiting on God we are often unaware of how God is working in ways to align His perfect plan for our growth, protection, and/or blessing. Ultimately He wants to fight the battles for us!


God graciously led me through one of the most difficult seasons of my life and many other struggles since that time. It was during that time he used my experiences and growth to lead me in to Christian Clinical Counseling. He taught me to lean on Him. He also taught me what empathy means. To understand the struggles of others, to sit with them in their pain, and a deep desire to share the healing we get when we trust the ‘Ultimate Healer’! His plans and time are always perfect! When we allow ourselves to ‘Be Still’ we can rest in His shadow, under His wing of protection, and have confidence that He has a perfect plan (and perfect timing) for our lives!


Related verses
(Psalm 91; Exodus 14:13-14; John 16:33; Psalm 37:7, I Kings 18-19, 2 Chronicles 20:14-17)


Related songs based on these scriptures
Hillsong – Still Hillsong -Be still


Goals, and Necessary Endings

By Donna Gibbs

“Necessary Endings”. That phrase just sounds… wrong, doesn’t it? But if you are seeking a goal that God has orchestrated, then the journey will automatically involve some endings. And these endings will indeed be required. Endings are non-negotiable components of achieving goals. 

I’ve spent the last year processing endings. For those who know me well, you know that the counseling ministry of A Clear Word Counseling Center was very close to my heart for many years. In 2007, after serving ten years as a single practitioner, I allowed the necessary ending of my independence and responsibility only to myself as I followed God’s leading to open a non-profit and expand the counseling ministry. After a tremendous amount of personal stretching and many hours of hard work, an organization was born. To be honest, it felt more like the birthing of a baby. I poured myself into developing the organization, developing an annual comedy night and an annual golf tournament that would fund our Client Assistance Program, and growing and nurturing an amazing team of clinicians and staff. I remember often reflecting on how grateful I was that God seemed to have shined His blessing on that organization. He allowed us to be used to help people… truly help people. Lives were being saved and changed. Oppression was being lifted. Marriages healed. Depression released. It was a truly great decade! When you pour into a ministry like that, and you see God using it in the most intimate way in the lives of countless people, you develop emotional ties. When something is so sacred, you want to hold on… and never let go. So, you can imagine the emotions I experienced when I recognized that God was leading something new for that organization. And that is precisely why the term “necessary ending” became an important one for me. 

It is impossible to follow God to a new place without letting go of the old. We can’t accomplish the new without releasing what has already been. Endings are necessary. Indeed, I had to allow the ending of A Clear Word in order to energetically embrace my role in the graduated ministry of Summit Wellness Centers. 

What about you? What goal do you know God is orchestrating in your life? Is it related to your ministry? Or perhaps a relationship? Your health? Your finances? If you are pursuing a goal, remember that endings will be necessary. Some endings are radical and complete. There is no residual of the past, no contact. Other endings are more like endings of patterns, methods, or particular structures. But remember this: an ending in some manner will be non-negotiable. You can’t add(a new goal) without subtracting (from the old). It’s basic math! 

God has a word about these necessary endings: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:18) 

So today, let’s learn to embrace necessary endings. Rather than focusing on the unknowns and anxieties of a transition, let’s welcome the basic math that comes with obedience to a new, God-ordained task. Where God has led, He will also assist in the necessary release. 

For more about necessary endings, I suggest the book by the same title, written by Henry Cloud. 


Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. 

Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.

No One Wants the Successful Outcome of a Destructive Goal

By Donna Gibbs

There is a day, week, and month for most any observance under the sun. And among many other observances in the month, January is National Be on Purpose Month. It’s quite fitting, don’t you think? We are all more aware than ever of goals and commitments for the coming year. And without intention and purpose, we’ll likely not meet the objectives that are in our sights. 

But while we’re talking about purpose, there is another essential ingredient that we must address: wisdom. You see, we can work intentionally toward anything. In fact, we can work with great intention toward a destructive goal! Toward a goal that will ultimately harm! And who wants the successful end result of a destructive goal? But in wisdom, we receive purpose, which can fuel intention towards a healthy and God-honoring goal. 

Solomon, who wrote much of the Proverbs, spoke of wisdom in the first chapter. Solomon makes a point to separate the foolish from the wise. And the distinctions are clear. A foolish person doesn’t seek instruction. A foolish person has their own agenda, and seeks that agenda very intentionally, but perhaps against the advice of a more knowledgeable consultant. To the contrary, a wise person is teachable, and constantly seeks learning. A wise person yearns for guidance and instruction, insight and understanding. 

To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight, to receive instruction in wise dealing, 

in righteousness, justice, and equity; to give prudence to the simple, 

knowledge and discretion to the youth— Let the wise hear and increase in learning, 

and the one who understands obtain guidance, to understand a proverb and a saying, 

the words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. 

Proverbs 1:2-7 

So this month, Be on Purpose, as the observance declares. Yes, focus on your goals and continue your resolve toward your objectives. But don’t do so with blinders. Wisdom is the beginning of healthy purpose. Seek biblical wisdom. Be teachable. Reach out for competent and biblical help and coaching, rather than thinking you have it all figured out on your own. Remember, no one wants the successful outcome of a destructive goal. 

Be on Purpose, with godly wisdom. And thrive! 


Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse.

Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.

Resolutions: “Better is the End of a thing than its Beginning”

by Donna Gibbs

It’s 2019 and many of you are pushing successfully towards your New Year Resolutions. 

But many of you are already at a quitting point. 

Did you know that a large number of New Year Resolutions are dropped by the end of the first week of January? 

Here’s why. We fail to achieve a goal because of a few correctable stumbling blocks: 

  1. We made a superficial goal to begin with and our heart is not fully engaged. We just impulsively picked a goal because it seemed like the popular thing to do, but we don’t really, really want it. 
  2. We failed to write down our goal. Without a measurable goal in mind, it’s hard to know when we have achieved our objective. 
  3. We forget the why. We lose sight of how life could be once this goal is achieved. We quit imagining the outcome and become complacent. 
  4. We give up too quickly. By definition, a task that requires a goal, or requires resolve, is a task that has brought intimidation. The quest of a goal typically brings discomfort. It requires more work than we expected. It may cost more than we were prepared to pay. Pursuing a goal may even create conflicts. In an effort to squelch the discomfort, we quit. And we quit prematurely. We even give up on a goal that is very important to us, or very much needed. 

If God has laid on your heart an objective for 2019, then follow Him in obedience. Resolve to accomplish that which God is leading. Then, write down your goal. Display words or phrases related to your goal on chalk-boards or bulletin boards in your home and/or office. (These must be displayed in convenient locations that you will see throughout the day. You will certainly need the reminders.) Then, stay the course! Don’t give up! Persevere! Tell a trusted friend about your commitment and invite their accountability. When you have a failure, evaluate what you can learn from it, dust off your boots, and continue your course. A verse I clung to last year was “Better is the end of a thing than its beginning” (Ecclesiastes 7:8). I kept that verse in front of me all year long, cheering me on towards my commitment, and validating me when things got tough. What does that verse mean for you? Yes, the beginning is going to be hard. But it’s the end result that you can look forward to celebrating! 


Donna Gibbs, co-owner of Summit Wellness Centers, PLLC, is author of the recent releases, Silencing Insecurity and Becoming Resilient. Donna has authored numerous other books, and is commonly featured on radio broadcasts across America, and occasionally internationally as well. Donna has been providing individuals and families the hope and help they need for twenty years as a national certified counselor, board-certified professional Christian counselor, and licensed professional counselor supervisor. A member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), she is a leading professional provider for Focus on the Family, Christian Care Network, r3Continuum, FINDINGbalance, and Samaritan’s Purse. Follow Donna’s author page at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaGibbsResilience/ for daily encouragement, the weekly blog, and updates regarding events and speaking engagements.