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Connie Cavanaugh    

Not just in my professional life as a speaker and writer but also in my personal life as a wife, mom, grammy, friend and church member, I found out the hard way that “one yes at a time” is the only way I can do this thing called faith. If, like me, you want to follow God too, perhaps you’ve also discovered that it’s not as easy as you once thought.

You may have been taught, early on, as I was, that God loves you and has a plan for your life and all you need to do is give Jesus control of your life and everything will fall into place. So what happens when you invite Jesus in and try to follow and things don’t fall into place like you thought they would? Here’s what happens: you change from someone who is sold out to someone who drops in, drops out, or fakes it. In other words, the further you drift from God, the less involved you want to be with your spiritual community.

Is this your story? Did you step out with Jesus as I did with great fervour and passion only to find yourself flattened, like religious roadkill, along the pathway of Great Expectations? If this is your story, it doesn’t have to be the end of your story. This blog’s aim is to provide regular encouragement, practical help, Biblical inspiration, and the occasional grin to fellow God-followers. Subscribe now and you will receive a new post every Wednesday that will give you the boost you need to keep you on track.

Here’s the scoop (a.k.a. my bio, Reader’s Digest version): My husband, Gerry Taillon, was already a pastor when we married in 1978. So I should have known what I was in for, right? HA! Did you? I rest my case. Even though marrying a minister automatically put me in the public eye, what really thrust me onto a larger “stage” was something completely unexpected. God asked me to publicly tell the truth about my big secret: although I had once been a fervent believer, I felt like I had lost my faith and didn’t know where to find it. My response to that request — the first yes after several years of saying no — changed my life in a big way, thrusting me onto an international platform as a speaker and writer.

Long, long ago and far, far away I was raised in a devotedly religious, wonderful loving family of seven girls and one boy — poor beggar; is it any wonder he’s single today? I grew up knowing all about religion but did not understand how to have a relationship with God on a personal level. When I was 18 God found a way to connect with me and I asked Jesus to forgive my sin (of trying to be my own god) and gave Him control of my life. Things changed! My family was stunned, my friends hit the road, and I found a new place to belong when I joined a tiny but rapidly growing church in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. My first pastor, Henry Blackaby, who went on to write Experiencing God, baptized me in 1974 and gave me a solid foundation on which to build my faith.

No one would have believed that 20 years later I would feel like I had lost my faith and be left wondering if this “God thing” was all a big joke. The sticky part is that I was still married to a man in ministry and he was now in a position of influence and greater exposure than ever before. No one but the two of us was aware of how far I had drifted into this wilderness of unbelief. Hoping for restoration, but not knowing how to accomplish it, we didn’t plan on sharing this journey with anyone but our closest family and friends. God had a different plan.

The full story of how God made Himself known to me once again is told in my book From Faking it to Finding Grace and part of that story was His request for me to step out and publicly reveal my decade-long wilderness experience. My assignment from God was, and is, to reach out to believers who drift into (or leap into!) spiritual dryness. When I’m not escaping (I originally wrote “playing hooky” but then remembered that Gerry and other dyslexics might read that as “playing hooker” so refrained) to the playground so I can play with my grandkids, my mission is to give hope and help to believers who want to get moving again or keep moving forward with Christ.

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