Posted by: Robin~AllThingsHeartandHome | February 17, 2009

Guest Post!

Guest Post~Julie West Garmon

Julie has been one of my BFF’s since 8th grade! She and I got married within a week of each other…(hers lasted, mine didn’t) we


had kids together, learned how to be wives & mom’s together, mourned together, laughed together…we’re forever buds.

Julie is an amazing writer. She writes for Guideposts and lots of other Christian publications. Check out her website here and she helps write Girls, God and the Good Life blog~


Julie was helping pull me out of a pit the other day and I asked her to write her encouragement to me as a guest post. (She had already written it for a devotion for church, she’s always 2 steps ahead!)

I soooo loved the word picture of me and my darn pallet…see if you can relate? 

                                     Jesus said to him, “Arise, take up your pallet, and walk.” John 5:8

         I have this theory.

        I think some of us, maybe most of us, struggle with at least one thing in life. My one thing is fear. It’s weird. If I allow even one pipsqueak of a fear to tiptoe through my thoughts, it stirs others.

        What if your mind goes blank when you’re speaking to a crowd of people?

        What if this mole isn’t just a mole?

        What if Thomas hurts his leg again?

        When I’m really honest with myself, I hate the truth—it feels more natural to worry and be afraid. Maybe I get charged on the energy. Who knows?

        Sometimes, many times, in my prayer journal I write, “Jesus, I know I must be wearing You out with this same old same old.” But He never panics. His timing is always perfect. I sense Him smiling at me—laughing in a kind, relaxed sort of way. As I read these seven words from John 5 I can almost here Him say:

        “Arise, take up your pallet, and walk, Julie. You don’t have to stay in your fear, all huddled under the sheets today. You’ve been stuck here on your pallet before, remember? Get up, girl. Get outta that sick bed. You have a life to live. Freedom—if you want it. You can do all things through Me. I alone strengthen you.”

        When I take His hand and let Him lead, the fear scrams. Every single time.


Lord, I’m reaching for Your hand today. Let’s dance again.  

My one thing, like Julie’s, is also fear. Julie’s fear leads her to worry. My fear leads me to extreme stress. Today, I’m going to take up my pallet and take His hand…what’s your one thing?



  1. My big thing right now? The funk created by a combination of the grief of losing my brother and then the smack down that my fibromyalgia caused on my body when I had emergency surgery two weeks to the day of my brother’s burial. The surgery cost me the Bachelor’s program I was about to enter, and the subsequent year has been a year of fighting to get over the physical weakness and to find some sanity in the midst of grief. Through Gitz, God reminded me that He is helping me become more through all of this. I am not going it alone.

    Disclaimer: I have been afraid of am multitude of things ever since I can remember. I thought the Incredible Hulk was in my closet as a child, and there were snakes in my floor after the lights went out. I would take up this mat but something might reach out from underneath it and grab my leg. 🙂 Truly, I grapple with fear in the above mentioned struggle. I am afraid that if I go back to life and everything is okay, then life will come crashing down around me again. We have had a long five years of tragedies and difficulties. But there were tremendous blessings, too. It is just going to take some courage to get back into life.

    Robin, you truly are an encourager, and you have been a joy to me as I try to pick myself up and dust myself off and get back into life. My health is improving now… Julie, this writing was perfect. I hope with all my heart I do it. I want to pick up my mat and walk (and walk, and walk, and walk). Thank you. And again, I have always enjoyed your writing in the Guideposts books.

  2. Anita, you said: “I’m afraid that if I go back to life and everything is okay, then life will come crashing down around me again.”

    Chills on top of chills…Mike and I were just talking about that, we both feel that EXACT way, at Bible study someone said almost that same thing…I have a post I wrote a few weeks ago (not published) where I was fighting with those thoughts…and Pastor Pete’s messages…I have a feeling God is wanting to do something…I’m afraid to voice what but He’s up to something…
    I’m sure none of that made a lick of sense but when I read your comment…it was a God Thing.
    love you~

  3. So, I clicked on Robin’s blog today and see my name in all red! Wow! Such an honor to be your guest blogger–(Is that what I’m called?)

    Anita, I love your gut-level honesty. Anything I want to say doesn’t reach the depth of where you’ve been. I’m so sorry about this past year(s) for you. I glad Robin has connected us. She’s good at that!

    Fear. After I came out of “The Bad Year” I couldn’t look back at it for a long time. 1994. I was terrified that it would knock me down again. But good came from it. My first publication in Guideposts magazine was about my bad year–story is called Resurrected.

    My favorite quote is from The Inward Journey, by Gene Edwards. It’s “Thank you, friend pain.”

    Love to you today, Anita.


  4. Julie, what beautiful and insightful words! One of my mother’s friends used to gift her with a subscription of Guideposts. I felt awful about the fact my mother is not a reader, at all. And then one day when I was about 10 I picked one up and it became such a source of encouragement and inspiration to me. I realize now that subscription was meant for me, not my mom.

    In all honesty, ONE things does not come to mind… many things that I am only now beginning to take stock of… fear is right up there, but worry is so much more prevalent for me I think. This is one of those things I will go chew on for awhile… ohhhh you are making me think!

    Blessings to all three of you and everyone who shows up today!

  5. This is what I love about your blog, Robin… I get so much out of your posts (so great, Julie… thanks for this) but I also get so much out of what your peeps comment. I love truthful, open hearts.

    I think my “one thing” is that, while I’m a total dreamer, I’m also a total realist. Both of which have served me well in life, but at this point in my illness I stop myself from dreaming because of the realities of my limitations. I hate to think of limiting my life before life does, but to step out into disappointment time and again is beyond discouraging. I have to pick up my pallet and trust He’ll help me find a balance between living with hope and living in the now.

  6. Control. If I give up control and let God, what if He does not understand the full situation, (ha ha), if he does not know what I really need. When I hear myself, when I feel my tight control, confess my sin, and let God’s peace flood my heart it is amazing to see His hand, to feel His touch.

    Thank you Julie and Rob.

  7. My one thing is pride. I want to be the best. I want to be on top. I want to be the smartest person in the room. So many times, I can’t get out of the way and let God do big things because then I would have to give God credit and not Jon. I want the credit. It’s a terrible disease that causes more problems than anything else in my life. But God is bigger than me and my pride. It takes a lot of prayer and a lot of reading how big God is to keep myself reminded of how small I am.

    Thanks for this today!

  8. You know what just hit me? With us being honest and saying our thing(s) surely it frees us up some–even if it’s just a little bit.

    I tried for years to hide my one thing (which also includes pride, control, worry, and perfectionism–and what people think) but I think it honors God to go ahead and admit my stuff and ask for help.

    Love to you all and thanks for commenting. I was afraid nobody’d say a word. Well, I was. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: