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The Grove Podcast :: Fighting forward when life feels hard.



I'm a writer, author, and online educator who loves helping others build intentional lives through the power of habit and meaningful routines.







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I spoke at Passion City Church’s The Grove this month. It’s a gathering for women of faith who band together and encourage each other through the ups + downs of life. In the midst of the pandemic, all the gatherings have been virtual so we recorded this a few days earlier. I was able to show up and talk about my new book “Fighting Forward” and what it looks like to “fight forward” when our circumstances are less than ideal.

If you feel tired and worn out these days, like you’re punching the air and making little progress, then take listen to the episode.

You know me, there is nothing I love more than getting practical… breaking things down into action steps.

I’m including some prep notes from my talk below (I know some of you like reading the notes) but plug in for encouragement while you’re grocery shopping, or cleaning the house, or getting some work done. I packed it full with action-oriented items to help you move forward in the face of hard things. Enjoy + let me know if you take a listen!

The Prep Notes

As I started prepping for the new year, God downloaded something in my heart that I’ve been sitting with ever since: 

Your circumstances may not change but how you act within your circumstances can change at any time.

This hit me. I don’t really like the truth of it. I’d much rather lean on my circumstances as an excuse for why I can’t move forward. 

But you see, our lives are not on pause just because our circumstances don’t look how we expected them to look. If anything, the work we are called to do matters more than it has ever mattered before. 

That is my hope for all of us: That we would take a deep breath in and we would recommission ourselves to the work of right here, right now. As unglamorous as it is. As hard as it is. That God is not looking at these circumstances as accidental but that he was commissioned us for such a time as this. 

My prayer is that we wouldn’t wait for circumstances to shift. That we wouldn’t wait for different feelings to arrive or for things to get easier. But that you would decide to show up to the fight that is right in front of you and start partnering with God to fight forward into all the things he has for you up ahead. 

But how do we do that? How do we show up for the fight that is right in front of us? When life feels hard and uncertain? 

001. Start Small.

If we want to experience transformation on any level, we must be committed to the deep, internal work.

Maybe it’s your health. Maybe it’s those dreams God planted in your heart. Maybe it’s your family. Or your faith. 

Whatever it is– the transformations starts small. A single vitamin. The printing of a healthy recipe. The first prayer. That first run. Genesis 1. 

And then you take those small things and you put them on repeat. We have to keep coming back. Over and over again. I believe some of the best things in this lifetime that God has for us come with the same instructions: repeat for best results. 

When we get dedicated to the work, we start to realize all of life is just a bunch of small stuff that looks bigger when we put it all together. And then we read this book and we notice God is a God of small things, just as much as he is the God of big miracles. 

002. Put It on Repeat.

If you spend your precious hours focusing on what other people are doing, you’ll miss out on what God wants to do with you. You will miss the marrow. What you are uniquely called to live out in your lifetime. 

We don’t need more people trying to be imitations of other people. 

What we need is people who are willing to get alone with God, dig deep, and figure out what they bring to the table. Because it is different than what someone else is called to bring. 

Get alone with God and get your daily missions from him. God, who do you want me to see? God, where do you want me to go? God, what do you want me to pay attention to? We can swap imitation for a deep, overflowing intimacy with our father. But it means we have to keep coming back. 

We have to be dedicated to small things on repeat.

003. Clear Out the Noise.

Because there’s a lot of it right now. We have to stop thinking the news of the media and the world is somehow going to do anything but deplete us. It won’t fill. It never has.

Nothing shifted in my own story until I made the deliberate decision to clear out the noise.

I stopped picking up my phone and went to my Bible instead. I didn’t have much time or energy. I simply would show up for 10 minutes and ask God for the next “rung on the ladder.” A little hope to carry me through the day as a 9-month pregnant first-time mama in the midst of a pandemic. And he met me every single day.

But we cannot hear the voice of God if we always arrange for the noise to be louder than him.

004. Look to Jesus.

We need to look to Jesus. And I don’t say that to be super spiritual. I say to be one of the most practical tactical pieces of advice I can give you: look to Jesus. Follow Jesus.

We know how to follow someone. The social media influencer that you know exactly what brand of clothing they are wearing and where they bought their couch from. Or the person who riles you up on social media so you deliberately go back to their account several times a day in the hopes they’ve said something new to rile you up further. 

What if we followed Jesus in that way? 

“What would Jesus do” is not a catchy phrase on a crocheted bracelet. It is a question that should inform our every movement… 

But you can’t know what he would do if you don’t know what he did. 

Look at how he treated people.

Look at how many times he gets alone with the Father.

Look at how he cleared out the noise.

Look at the small things he did on repeat.

Look at his routines and rhythms.

I promise you, if you show up, the transformation will happen. It will be slow. It won’t be documentable. But it will be real. And it will be rooted. And that’s who we need more of in this world today: people who are real and rooted in something bigger than themselves.

Listen to the full talk here.


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Hi, I'm Hannah

I love writing about all things faith, mental health, discipline + and motherhood. Let's be penpals!


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