Have you ever felt like you’re barely holding on? Some days—some seasons—are just hard, and no matter how much we know we need to chin up and soldier on, we often just want to let go.
Well, today’s guest candidly and vulnerably shares her personal struggles with mental health and how those struggles threatened to overwhelm her, especially during the pandemic.
Beloved author and broadcaster, Sheila Walsh, joins us on the 4:13 Podcast and describes the issues that plagued her, the promises and miracles she clings to, and the practical strategies that have helped her.
And those strategies can help you too, my friend, no matter what you face. So, if you’re barely holding on, don’t let go yet. Hope is on the way!
If you don’t know her already, let me introduce Sheila…
Sheila Walsh grew up in Scotland and has spoken to over six million women around the world. Her passion is being a Bible teacher, making God’s Word accessible, and sharing her own story of how God met her when she was at her lowest point and lifted her up again. Sheila loves writing, selling almost six million books as a national bestselling author. She also cohosts the television program, LIFE Today, airing in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Australia. Calling Texas home, Sheila lives in Dallas with her husband, Barry, and son, Christian.
As Sheila shares her story and talks about her struggle, we discuss much of what she shares in her book, Holding On When You Want to Let Go: Clinging to Hope When Life Is Falling Apart. So, in addition to listening to the podcast, I thought you would enjoy reading some direct quotes from her book.
I pray Sheila’s wisdom will give you hope and help you hold on when you want to let go!
Remember, sister, you can hold on, because God is mighty and He is your strength. And it’s through His strength that you can do all things.
Sheila Walsh Book Excerpts
- “If you feel as if you are just hanging by a thread, I want you to know that there is help and healing for you. As I look at my life today, I know one thing is for sure: I am a miracle. I am held by the God of miracles. So what happened? What changed? It didn’t happen because I suddenly became confident or took a self-help class. Not at all. I just reached out and touched the edge of His robe.”
- “I wanted out of my nightmare, but that was not God’s rescue plan. His plan was to walk me right through it to the other side, never leaving me for one minute. I learned through that experience that what we fear is far more potent than the thing we are afraid of.”
- “I’m not fixed; it’s much better than that! I’m redeemed, I’m rescued, I’m being held by the One who changed everything. I’m being held by the One who holds all the pieces of my story. You are too. It really is okay not to be okay. You don’t have to be perfect. You are perfectly loved just as you are.”
- “One of the things that brings anxiety and makes us panic is when life feels out of control. If we live with the conviction that because God loves us He will orchestrate the details of our life in a way that makes sense to us, we will be disappointed and disillusioned.”
- “Every single thing I was trying to control was out of my control. The truth is they had never been in my control, but the greater truth is this: nothing was or ever has been out of God’s control.”
- “Being alone and being lonely are not the same things. Being alone can be a beautiful thing, a time of rest, of reflection, of quiet. Loneliness is a strange thing. You can be in a crowd and feel lonely. You can be loved and feel lonely. Being lonely is like a silent ache, a missing piece of your soul, a feeling that you don’t belong, you don’t fit in, you’re not like everyone else.”
- “When you find yourself in a place where you are crying out in pain—begging God to listen to your prayer, to change your situation, to intervene in the way only He can and He doesn’t, just know that Christ has been there too.”
- “I want you to know this: when you have walked through suffering, loss, pain, and grief and you still choose to love God, all of Heaven celebrates. When you get down on your knees—albeit with questions on your lips and tears on your cheeks—and worship God, you are being watched and it is a wonder to the angels.”
- “The truth is that we are all messed up. Some of us just do a better job of concealing it than others, but we don’t have to hide anymore. I believe God is offering us a whole new way to live, a way to live in radical freedom and grace.”
- “I don’t know what the missing pieces in your story are. I don’t know the circumstances you find yourself in right now or why you might feel as if you are just clinging to hope by a thin thread. But I do know this: you are not alone. You are not abandoned. You are seen. You are loved. You are believed. You are forgiven. You are free. Hold on to Jesus with everything that’s in you, and on the days when you feel yourself slipping, remember you are being held.”
[Listen to the podcast using the player above, or read the transcript below. Then check out the links below for more helpful resources.]
Books & Bible Studies by Jennifer Rothschild
More from Sheila Walsh
- Visit Sheila’s website
- Holding On When You Want to Let Go: Clinging to Hope When Life Is Falling Apart
- Can I Be Okay With Not Being Okay? With Sheila Walsh [Episode 43]
- Can I Pray When I Don’t Know What to Say? With Sheila Walsh [Episode 89]
- LIFE Today Episode with Sheila Walsh and Jennifer Rothschild
- Follow Sheila on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
Links Mentioned in This Episode
- Suicide Prevention Resources from Kay Warren
- Kintsugi (Japanese art of repairing broken pottery)
- Can I Use Scripture to Grow Closer to God? [Episode 111]
Related Blog Posts
- Can I See Beauty in the Brokenness of Mental Illness? With Sarah Clarkson [Episode 158]
- Can I Find Life Again After the One I Love Lost His to Suicide? With Kayla Stoecklein [Episode 119]
- Can I Quiet My Anxious Thoughts? With Jamie Grace [Episode 143]
- Can I Pray Scripture Over My Life? With Jodie Berndt [Episode 162]
- Can I Overcome Sadness? [Episode 40]
- Can I Access God’s Power When I Feel Powerless? With Randy Frazee [Episode 165]
- Don’t miss an episode! Subscribe to the 4:13 Podcast here.
- Were you encouraged by this podcast? Reviews help the 4:13 Podcast reach more women with the “I can” message. Click here to leave a review on iTunes.
4:13 Podcast: Can I Hold On When I Want to Let Go? With Sheila Walsh [Episode 179]
Sheila Walsh: And I did something I hadn't done in years. I started to cry and I couldn't stop. And I think everybody was surprised. Certainly my guests didn't know what to do, or the floor director, and eventually they just threw to a commercial break.
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, gosh, yes. Ohhh.
Sheila Walsh: Yeah. And I remember walking off the set, taking off my mic, and locking myself in my dressing room. And as far as I was concerned, I felt like my life was over.
Jennifer Rothschild: Have you ever felt like you are barely holding on? Some days, some seasons, they're just hard. And no matter how much we know that we need to chin up and soldier on, we often just want to let go. Well, today Sheila Walsh is candidly and vulnerably sharing her personal struggles with mental health and how especially during the pandemic those struggles threatened to overwhelm her. On this episode of the 4:13, this beloved author and broadcaster will describe the issues that plagued her, the promises she clings to, and the practical strategies that have helped her. And those strategies, they're going to help you too, my friend, no matter what you face. So if you're barely holding on, don't let go yet. Hope is on the way.
K.C. Wright: Welcome to the 4:13 Podcast, where practical encouragement and biblical wisdom set you up to live the "I Can" life, because you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. Now, your host, Jennifer Rothschild.
Jennifer Rothschild: K.C. almost sang the word "host."
K.C. Wright: I have told you --
Jennifer Rothschild: (Singing) Your host --
K.C. Wright: -- for years now, we need a jingle for all things.
Jennifer Rothschild: I know. And you could write it.
K.C. Wright: And life is just better when you picture yourself singing on a musical.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's true. Well, and I know you used to do musical theater, so you come by it.
K.C. Wright: And you really do have a singing voice.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well...
K.C. Wright: I love the podcast where we end with a song from you.
Jennifer Rothschild: Aww.
K.C. Wright: Yeah. We need to do --
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, we need to do that more often, yes.
K.C. Wright: But we need someone to write the jingle for the 4:13 Podcast.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. Well, somebody out there, if you're a songwriter, write us a jingle. That would be very fun actually.
K.C. Wright: Woo-hoo, we're going to get it then.
Jennifer Rothschild: We might officially do a jingle contest sometime.
K.C. Wright: Okay.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, and ho we're talking to today, Sheila, she is quite the singer herself. In fact, I remember when I was in college, having her CDs. So she's quite a lady. But she's talking today about holding on when you want to let go. And some of you know what that feels like. And I was thinking -- with this conversation you're about to hear, this image came to my mind of how when our littlest boy, Connor -- who's a young adult now. But when he was just a little guy, I just remember him holding my hand, you know. And it was so little that his little fingers would you just barely cross my palm and he would hold on. But then what I would do is I would wrap my larger hand around his so my fingers were actually holding on to his hand. And so it's this picture of -- he thought he was holding on to me, but actually he was being held. And I think that's an image we need to have in our minds as we hear this conversation. Because there are days when you're like, "I just want to let go. I can't keep holding on." Well, when you're feeling that way, remember you are held by a much larger hope, by a much larger hand, and so you just keep holding on, or allow yourself to be held. And I think that's something you're really going to hear very clearly in Sheila's conversation today.
K.C. Wright: Sheila Walsh grew up in Scotland and has spoken to over 6 million women around the world. Her passion is being a Bible teacher, making God's Word very practical, and sharing her own story of how God met her when she was at her lowest point and lifted her up again. Sheila loves writing, has sold almost 6 million books, and is a national best-selling author. She is also the co-host of the television program "Life Today," airing in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Australia. Calling Texas home, Sheila lives in Dallas with her husband, Barry, her son Christian, and two little dogs, Tink and Maggie, who rule the roost. Today she and Jennifer are talking about her book "Holding On When You Want to Let Go" -- boy, can we all relate -- "Clinging to Hope When Life is Falling Apart." Here's Jennifer and Sheila.
Jennifer Rothschild: Well, Sheila, over the years you have shared snapshots of your story. And in a minute I'm going to ask you to really kind of unpack your story a little bit more for us. But I've noticed over the years as I've known, you've been super honest about your story, yet this book, it feels like it's just even a little more vulnerable. So I'm curious, why is that, and why now?
Sheila Walsh: Well, honestly, Jennifer, I think it's because it's very current. You know, I sat down at one point to write a new book -- because you and I know we both have schedules, things that we want to do. And I started writing a book on miracles, on what does a miracle look like, and then COVID hit and everything kind of changed. All my speaking engagements basically were cancelled or moved further down the line another year. And even though I've talked in previous books about my journey with clinical depression, it was pretty much under control. I mean, I take my medication every day, I know to get a little exercise in, I try to eat as well as I can. But suddenly during this whole COVID thing, I found myself spiraling again. And it surprised me the level of despair that I was feeling. And so for several weeks -- I mean, I scrapped my writing project. I just didn't do anything. And then I found myself asking the Holy Spirit, "How do I live in these days?" I know how to live when things are what I considered normal, when I would go out on weekends and -- and honestly, I don't think I realized how much that I receive, when I go out to speak, from other women. And even -- like, if I'm at your events and I get to hear you share, get to hear others share, I don't think I realized how much that fed my soul. And suddenly I was -- you know, just Barry and I in the house and I found myself really spiraling. So asking the Holy Spirit, "Will you teach me how to live in these days." And it was out of that journey that I wrote this current book, "Holding On When You Want to Let Go," because that's how I felt. And I wanted to say to other women, "I know what this feels like, and I was tempted to let go, and I don't want you to let go."
Jennifer Rothschild: You're right, it is so timely. I remember one time, Sheila, Michael Card saying to me about my blindness -- and by the way, for those who don't know him, he's an incredible singer-songwriter, kind of a theologian who puts --
Sheila Walsh: Yeah, one of the best.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, yeah. But he said to me about my blindness, it's a severe mercy. And that always stuck with me. And as I heard you describe your experience wanting to write about miracles, actually needing a miracle, you know, but how God used that time, that was really a severe mercy. As hard as it was, the mercy is in what he was able to flow through you to give to us. But I also know there are some people listening who are like, "Well, what is her story?" So would you mind just taking us there. Let's go back, way back, to when you were hosting the 700 Club and a guest did something on set, on live TV, that took you off guard and it ended you up in a place you never expected. Could you start there and tell us your story.
Sheila Walsh: Yeah, of course. And I'll never forget that morning, because even though I was on the 700 Club -- and if you were just tuning in or flipping through channels, it looked like I pretty well had my act together. I mean, I had this tremendous privilege of interviewing people and of sharing what God was doing around the world. But the kind of untold story, the flip side of that, was that I lived a very lonely life. I had a barrier around my life, I had a kind of wall built around my life because of things that happened in my childhood. And if you would dig down to the foundation stone of what I believed, that first foundation stone would say, "There's something wrong with you." And so I just kept myself safe. I mean, I kept myself cold, but I kept myself safe. But then that morning on the show, my guest, instead of answering my first question, she turned the tables on me and she said, "Sheila, you sit here every day and you ask us all how we are doing. How are you doing?" And I wasn't expecting the question. And there was something about the kindness in her eyes -- and I didn't have time to pull up that wall, and it just -- it was like she reached in and removed the first brick. And I did something I hadn't done in years. I started to cry and I couldn't stop. And I think everybody was surprised. Certainly my guest didn't know what to do, or the floor director, and eventually they just threw to a commercial break.
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, gosh, yes. Ohhh.
Sheila Walsh: Yeah. And I remember walking off the set, taking off my mic, and locking myself in my dressing room. And as far as I was concerned, I felt like my life was over.
Jennifer Rothschild: And so I can only imagine locked in your dressing room, you've had this image your whole life, and suddenly it just crashed on national TV. I mean, a lot of us, when we have to have a breakdown, at least we get the benefit of privacy. So the pressure had to be on. So what happened when you get out of the dressing room?
Sheila Walsh: Well, I had made this kind of deal with God when I was eleven. That was the night I gave my life to Christ. And I remember saying, "Lord, if you promise that you'll never stop loving me, I will live a perfect life, I'll get it all right." Because my mom had told me that night, you know, "You have a Heavenly Father watching over you." And I remember thinking, "I've got one more chance to get it right." Because of my father's illness, because of his stroke, his personality had changed, and he went from being loving and caring and funny to being unrecognizable and ultimately quite violent. And so that was the whole premise I'd built my salvation on, I'll get it all right and you'll never stop loving me. So in my dressing room, I remember calling a friend of mine, a guy called Dr. Henry Cloud. And I said to him, "Henry, I think I'm losing my mind." And he said, "You're not, but you need some help, and you need it quickly." And so I went from being on national television in the morning, and by the evening I was in the locked ward of a psychiatric hospital, the same age as my father when he was admitted to a psychiatric hospital. And, Jennifer, I remember -- I know the special relationship you had with your dad. And I remember before my dad's illness, I would say, "I'm going to grow up and be just like my dad." And I remember that night in the hospital thinking, "Well, you've got what you wanted. You're just like your dad."
Jennifer Rothschild: So I can -- I just -- because I have a public ministry also, can only imagine the layers of complexity of this situation. But I would also think, suddenly none of the complexity matters because there's just this simple, profound reality it's just Sheila and Jesus alone with this brokenness. And so I know you had a visit in that hospital. I'd love you to share that with us.
Sheila Walsh: It's one of those things that I've never experienced before or since, and I still don't quite understand it all. But I remember the first night the nurse who was on charge said I would be -- someone would check on me every 15 minutes during the night, and I realized I was on suicide watch. And I didn't even get into the bed. I just felt so desperate and so desperately alone. And I took the blanket off the bed and I sat in the very corner of the room, with my head on my knees, and I was aware at regular intervals of someone at my door, and they would make some kind of comment like, "Are you doing okay?" and I would say "Yeah." But I never looked up. But about 3:00 in the morning, the person who came in didn't stay at the door, they walked right up to where I was. And when I saw their feet by my feet, I looked up, and looked just like a doctor maybe going off duty. But he was holding something. And he gave it to me, and it was really basically something he would give a child. It was a little stuffed lamb. And he put it in my hand and then he turned and he walked back to the door. And when he got to the door, he turned around and he said this: he said, "Sheila, the Shepherd knows where to find you." And it was one of those -- I mean, I don't even know how to put words to it, honestly, Jennifer. I mean, I was there for a month and I never saw him again. I honestly believe it was an angel.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
Sheila Walsh: And I think it was just God's way of saying, "I see you. You are not alone." You know, when you are checked into a psych hospital, even if you want to, you can't leave for 72 hours. I felt it was Christ the Shepherd saying, "I checked in with you. You are not alone."
Jennifer Rothschild: I remember too, Sheila, because you -- I have been with you in ministry and had the privilege of hearing parts of your story, and that part in particular. It always gives me chills, because why wouldn't -- why wouldn't our Father God visit? Why wouldn't he send an angel? Why wouldn't he communicate his kindness to you in the place when your soul feels the most desolate? And so here you are. And you said you were there for a month. Now, of course, that's a beautiful affirming experience you had. But clearly, every day in the psych hospital had to be not quite as comforting and affirming. I'm sure you had to do some really hard work and deal with some hard things that you would rather have avoided. So I'm curious, in that month in the hospital, what did you learn about just your own mental health or mental health in general?
Sheila Walsh: I think one of the first things I learned was how out of touch I was with how I was feeling, because I don't think I was. I remember in one session with a therapist, she had a list of words up on the board like "scared," "alone," "shameful." Tons and tons of words. And she said, "I want you to point to the ones that you are feeling the most profoundly." And I remember looking at the list and thinking, "I'm not feeling any of those." And it was just the beginning of kind of peeling off the layers of this self-protection. It was almost like I'd sent myself to prison so that I would be safe from any outsiders. And during that month, it was carefully, lovingly, prayerfully peeling back all those layers and to get to this place where I realized that because I had believed -- I mean, erroneously, because it was a brain injury. But because I had believed that the person I loved most in the world, my dad, had hated me in the end, then there was something desperately wrong with me. And everybody knew it, but nobody wanted to say anything to me. And so I kind of discovered the truth of -- I began to read the psalms in a way I never had before. And I think what I love about the psalms -- I remember Athanasius in the fourth century wrote, "Whereas most of Scripture speaks to us, the psalms speak for us." And I found that. I found the language of lament, of -- you know, just every emotion you could be feeling, I found them in the psalms. And I remember getting to Psalm 34. And David was in such a terrible place in his life when he wrote that psalm. You know, he had lied to a high priest. It would cost that priest's life and the lives of all the other priests at that time. He had fled to another nation where he had pretended to be insane, and basically the king said, "Hey, you know what, we have got our own people who are in trouble," and kicked him out. So David's in a cave and he hasn't even met up with his ragtag band yet. He's alone. And he writes Psalm 34. "Those who look to him" -- "Those who look to the Lord for help will be radiant with joy. No shadow of shame will touch their faces." And he went on to say, "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." And I began to find this tremendous companion in our brother David in saying to me, "It's okay to tell the truth. You actually can process your pain in the presence of your Father."
Jennifer Rothschild: That's so powerful. And I know those listening, they might have different circumstances that have conjured up similar emotions, but the beautiful thing is the same answer is in the same source, which is the presence of the Lord with us. He is near. He is near to the brokenhearted and those who are crushed. And so now, you know, people read your books, they listen to you on this podcast. You're so articulate. You know, they hear you speak, they see you on Life Today, and you got your act together, girl, it appears. So here's the question, because I know people have asked you. So are you fixed? Are you healed now? What do you say?
Sheila Walsh: It's an understandable question, but my response is always the same. "I'm not fixed; I'm redeemed," which is totally different. And I understand redemption differently than how I used to understand redemption. And it's actually been my friend Tozer, through reading some of his books, that I've begun to get a fresh understanding of redemption. I always thought it was just to do with us. But what Tozer said is redemption is putting God in the place where he is high, lifted up, sovereign, in control, and putting us where we belong, which is basically in the dust. But in his sovereignty, he reaches down and redeems us. And it's kind of like -- I don't know whether you're friends with Kay and Rick Warren, but --
Jennifer Rothschild: Oh, yeah.
Sheila Walsh: Yeah. After Matthew -- after their darling son, after a long, brave battle, took his own life, you know, Kay just went through -- I mean, I can't even begin to touch that kind of agony.
Jennifer Rothschild: No.
Sheila Walsh: But I remember she invited me to speak at their first symposium called "The Church and Mental Health." And I was the first speaker on the first night, which I was grateful for, because after that it was the surgeon general and the head of the American Psychiatric Association. I was very glad not to follow those --
Jennifer Rothschild: Intimidating.
Sheila Walsh: -- yes -- those chaps. But I remember looking at the audience and saying, "I can say something now I could never have said before, and that is, I am profoundly grateful for the gift of mental illness, because it means I can look into the eyes of somebody else who's struggling and say, 'Me too. You are not alone.'" And after that he sent me a little piece of that Kintsugi pottery. You know the kind where if a cup is broken or if a little vase is broken, it's a Japanese art where they repair it with gold so that they put all the pieces back together. But the seams, they're not glued, they're gold. And it's like what Christ does with us in our brokenness. He's like the master Kintsugi person. He makes -- when we give from all the broken pieces, it becomes more beautiful than ever could have been, and more valued and more treasured.
Jennifer Rothschild: What an encouragement. Because there's a lot of people feeling nothing but the brokenness. But, yes, you're right, God does do that. He has done that in you. And I think there's a humility in saying, "I don't need to be fixed."
Sheila Walsh: Yeah.
Jennifer Rothschild: I just need to walk in the humility of my redemption and how God has taken me from that miry pit and he has put my feet on a strong place. And thankfully, then, our dependence is on him and him alone. Okay, Sheila, I want us to get a little bit nitty-gritty here. Okay? So in depression, in any kind of difficulty we're dealing with, there's always various emotions that could be written on the chalkboard of our soul, that we are pointing to and saying, "Yeah, I feel this, I feel this." So when you're dealing with loneliness -- you mentioned it at the beginning of our conversation -- I'm curious what you have learned and what advice would you give to a woman who really feels totally alone right now.
Sheila Walsh: That's a great question. As we look over the past 18 months, I think that's only been accentuated in each one of us, the sense of being isolated, of being alone. And one of the things that I -- back to my asking the Holy Spirit, "How do I live in these days?" I remember sitting out -- we live in a three-story townhouse. And the middle floor, there's a little balcony. And I remember sitting out there one morning and this picture came to me of -- it was probably -- I don't know how many years ago, but Christian, our son, was maybe five at the time. And we were coming home from a Woman of Faith conference and we were going through Chicago airport to connect to our flight home. And Christian was marching ahead with his little Thomas the Tank Engine backpack, and he suddenly stopped and just raised his arms up. And he didn't say a word. He didn't need to. I mean, I'm his mom, I knew he was saying, "Mom, I'm tired." And I bent down and I picked him up and held him close and carried him to our gate, and I felt that invitation from the Father that morning. And so honestly, Jennifer, most mornings I go out onto my balcony and I raise my arms. And sometimes I don't say a word because the Father hears me. And I think I would want to say that to anyone who's listening and you feel you're alone, you feel no one understands. You don't even have words to know how to pray, how you could even put it all together. I would encourage you just to raise your arms, because your Father hears every unspoken cry, every unspoken prayer, and you will be held.
Jennifer Rothschild: The Shepherd always knows where to find you. That's beautiful and practical. All right, another question, then, getting practical here. So when you're feeling the sadness and the pain and you find yourself struggling again, Sheila -- okay? -- so what do you do on a very practical level? Like, do you have any strategies that you use to cope?
Sheila Walsh: Yeah. Actually, I have quite a few. Some of them are spiritual and some of them are -- well, no, they're all spiritual.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah, I know what you mean.
Sheila Walsh: There's days when I will -- in fact, this is a daily practice. I mean, I will read the psalms out loud, because I think it's good for my ears to hear what my eyes are reading. And it's like a declaration. It's like saying, "I know what's going on and I know what's happening and I know how I feel, but here's what I believe to be true." So I will do that every single day. My friend Dr. Jeremiah sent me this darling little book, and it goes through the psalms in a month, and I read from that book every single day. Also, I've learned just the joy of simple things, like taking a walk and being quiet. I realized this -- not so long ago I was speaking in Atlanta, Georgia, and I was driving -- I had to get an hour back to the airport. And I'm sitting in the airport, I'm having a little breakfast before I get on my flight, and I suddenly became aware of how noisy our world is. There was a song blaring in the restaurant, and the guy behind me was singing the song, best of my ability in a different key. Then a girl was talking on her phone to her boo. And I don't know what they were saying, but apparently he was hilarious, because she was approaching hyena level at table 9. And somebody else was watching something on their iPhone, but not with earphones, I mean, just listening. And I thought, the world has become so noisy. So I have learned the beauty of going for a walk in the quiet and just -- I've become what I would call a God stalker. I just look for the Lord everywhere, whether it's something simple as a bird flying by, or looking up at the sky, or the green of the grass. But just -- I believe that evidence of our Lord is everywhere if we will pay attention.
Jennifer Rothschild: So good. And you know what you just named? None of that requires the purchase of a book or beginning an eating plan or getting up at a certain time.
Sheila Walsh: Amen.
Jennifer Rothschild: I love all of that. Everything you just said is very doable, yet -- they might seem casual, but they are very strategic, and I think that's something we always need to pay attention to. We can be strategic and it doesn't have to be regimented. So that's super helpful. Something else in your book, Sheila, that you talk about, you talk about that sometimes holding on and letting go go hand in hand sometimes. So could you explain what you mean by that.
Sheila Walsh: Yeah. I know that sounds a little contradictory.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
Sheila Walsh: But really, it's -- I think if you go to, like, Psalm 46, verse 10, one of the very first verses that I ever learned from Scripture in Sunday school, "Be still and know that I am God." And it used to confuse me as a child, because I would think does that just means I have to be quiet and then suddenly I'll have this knowledge. But when you go back into the Hebrew root of "be still," what it means is let go. And I think for me in this season of my understanding is holding on to Jesus, because -- I mean, I've stopped watching the news at the moment. I mean, I'll occasionally watch the headlines, but most of the time I would rather pray because it's so depressing and watching what's happening in our world is very difficult. So I hold on to what I know to be true, but I let go of what I can't control, and I think that is the difference. I know that I can hold on to Jesus, I know I can hold on to His promises because he doesn't lie. I can stake my life on that. But I let go of the things I'm trying to control that never actually were in my control even when I thought they were good.
Jennifer Rothschild: All right, my friend, last question. You started this journey thinking you were writing a book on miracles. Looking back over the last 18 months, two years, how would you explain a miracle now?
Sheila Walsh: Wow, that's actually a great question. To me, a miracle is the gift of faith that God gives us to keep trusting when nothing makes sense. I've been doing this study in the Book of Romans, and I cannot get out of Romans chapter 8 because it's just -- I mean, it's so rich and deep and wide. But that very well- known verse, Romans 8:28, you know, which we all quote, as we should, "We know that in all things God brings good for those who love Him and are called according to his purpose." But as you and I both know, it doesn't mean they are good or feel good. And I read this quote by Warren Wiersbe where he said, "We live by faith and not by explanations." And I think that has really helped me. I kind of underlined and wrote that in my Bible, that we live by faith and not by explanations. And honestly, when I look at your life, Jennifer, and the difficulties that you have and continue to walk through, those that you share with us and those that are private, to me, you are a miracle. When I meet so many of these women in conferences who are going through difficult things, and they still believe, to me that is the greatest miracle of all, that there is this calling, this higher calling, to live by faith and not by what we understand.
K.C. Wright: We do live by faith, not by what we understand. Man, I'm telling you, when we do that, that right there really is the miracle. And by the way, her strategies are so practical, aren't they?
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. Yeah, very
K.C. Wright: We can really do all of them. Go for a walk, sit down and be quiet for a minute, you know. Really, I love that she reads psalms out loud. We can all do that as well. And there is something healing and grounding about hearing the Word, because we know this, faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. And when you think about it in the psalms, they really do express how we feel. But they always follow with, "But this is the truth." And I think that's so powerful. In fact, do you remember, K.C., we did a whole episode on the Book of Psalms and, like, how to understand it and study it. Do you remember that?
K.C. Wright: Yep. It was Episode 111, "Can I Use Scripture to Grow Closer to God?" It was so good, y'all. We will have a link to that on the show notes. Plus, the other episode Sheila was on about prayer, excellent.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yes.
K.C. Wright: You've got to listen as well to that. Of course, everything she does, in my opinion, is excellent. I'm just a big fan of Sheila Walsh.
Jennifer Rothschild: Me too.
K.C. Wright: The show notes are at 413podcast.com/179. Go there to find the links you need right now and the full transcript of this conversation, plus all the great quotes from her book.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah. Well, our dear ones, this has been another great episode with you. Sometimes I just have to pause and think about it, you know?
K.C. Wright: Yeah.
Jennifer Rothschild: It really was, it was a great episode. And we just love you. So thanks for being with us. We love the reviews that you leave. We read them, we notice them. They really do encourage us. So thank you so much for that. You tell us that you feel like we're just hanging out together, and we feel that way too. So hang out with us again next week. And remember until then, whatever you face, however you feel, you can do all things through Christ who gives you strength. I can.
K.C. Wright: I can.
Jennifer and K.C.: And you can.
K.C. Wright: Right here you would insert the jingle. (Singing) You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.
Jennifer Rothschild: That's a very jazzy jingle.
K.C. Wright: Or something.
Jennifer Rothschild: Yeah.
K.C. Wright: I don't know.
Jennifer Rothschild: (Singing) You can do (clapping) all things through (clapping). That sounds like a preschool jingle.
K.C. Wright: Okay, this is why we need someone to write one.
Jennifer Rothschild: This is why we need someone else.
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