I’ll Be Right Back!

 

So the time has come for me to take an extended blogging break.  For four years now, I have been blogging without much of a break.  But the time has come for me to regroup.

For  an ousider looking in – my year could look pretty exciting.  Writing a book was never a dream of mine – but it’s like a dream come true – it’s beyond my wildest expectations!  But writing a book while blogging – has burnt me out a bit. Along with the book, I had the opportunity to speak at a few amazing conferences this year.  I am so blessed.

Along with these opportunities, my blog platform has tripled and my unique visitor number has grown to over 225,000 a month!  I thank God for this gift, but oh my the emails and tweets and facebook messages and pins have my brain a clutter!! lol!  What have I done to my life???

This has all taken a toll on me mentally and physically.  Life is coming at me fast and I have had trouble with thinking clearly.  So from the inside looking out…and because I love you all and my God so much – I need to not become a train wreck right? :)  I need to regroup and pray about the direction God is taking Women Living Well.

Along with this blogging break – I have begun to let things go.  I said no to speaking at Allume next year, no to traveling for a Compassion International trip, no to hosting an amazing book club on my blog for a friend, no to a speaking event at my home church, no to a retreat at the house of an amazing author I adore, no to contributing and guest posting on some amazing blogs and many more little no’s to requests that have been made for giveaways and reviews.  I’m coming from a place of no…to protect my family, my ministry and my sanity. :)

I remember a conversation I had over lunch with my Greek Professor in college 17 years ago.  I shared with him how frustrating it was to attend a Christian college after attending a public school.  My passion in high school was to share the gospel…then I went to Bible college and there was no one to share the gospel with!  That was terribly frustrating and almost boring for me…I lost my drive, passion and courage as my Bible became my textbook.  And my professor, Dr. Sauer, said with his southern accent:

Courrrrrrrrrtney (he always drew out his “r’s”), you must sharpen your ax so when you leave this place, when you hit, you will hit harder.”

Ecclesiastes 10:10 says “If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success.”

And that’s where I’m at in this season of life – I feel dull…worn down…not very sharp.  Like I need more strength these days to write…when possibly some refreshing would make the words flow a little easier.

So, it’s time for a breather…for me to exhale.  

Ecclesiastes 4:6 says “Better one handful with tranquility than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind.”

Tranquility – I need some – I’ve been toiling with two handfuls and it’s time I drop one handful.

I will be back in 2013 - I pray with more vigor and fervor than I have today.  I am committed to piercing the darkness with the light of God’s word.  But until then…

Have a very Merry Christmas!  May you experience the wonder of this season and tranquility that God offers you. 

Walk with the King,

 

*If you subscribe to my blog during this time – you will not receive the eBook because it only sends out when I post a blog post.  So please email me at courtney(at)womenlivingwell.org and I will send you the link to the eBook within 24 hours.

**Please join me over at GoodMorningGirls.org where I will still be participating in the Advent Christmas Series there. 

***I apologize there will be no WLWW Link-Up Parties until I return.

I love you all so much and will be praying for you. I will still be around on Facebook and Twitter (but hopefully a bit less – although I must admit I really have fun there!) If you have a blog post in the past that touched you – I would love to hear about it.  I’m using this time to listen and pray about the direction for my future writing.

Comments

  1. Good for you! We will miss you but God will bless this decision, I know.

    • I have candles lit in my kitchen & soft music playing, thanks to your suggestions. This is a time of rest for our family as well. Our income was cut in half & my husband has to work all the holidays. But we are thankful for a job. With less $, we have slowed down considerably!
      I just wanted to thank you for the video clips of encouragement for homeschooling, parenting & being a help meet to my husband. Your voice for the family is one rarely heard. I pray for you that the Lord refresh you & give you the strength to do all he has called you to do. May you mount up on wings like eagles & run & not grow weary when you trust in the Lord. Knowing he has called me to roles in my life is so encouraging, I find his yoke is easy & his burden is light, so if the yoke gets heavy, I always try to take time with the King & make sure I’m still doing what he called me to. Believing for you to hear his voice clearly & have your ax sharpened for his service. You are loved & appreciated!

      • Stephanie voiced my feelings perfectly. Although my family (me) is still so crazy the candle is there, but not lit, but your website has given me pause and I thank you for that. Hope you are back stronger than ever–with your life intact—which is the most important thing. Because you can’t be you if you don’t care of you and yours! Best wishes and thank you.

      • I too have the music playing and the candles burning, praising God for Courtney.

    • Carol Esquibel says:

      Dear Courtney
      I would like to thank you for your hard work; I just found your blog couple of months ago and find it very enlightening and encouraging. Can I say something here; it is never easy to do something God wants you to do or leads you to do and Satan our Arch Enemy fights us every step of the way to accomplish what God wants us to do. Satan sometimes leads us to do things that in the beginning God never led us to do. Why does he do that? to destroy us; to make us tired and give us a desire to quit..just not stop, but stop everything. He is very sly and deceptive.

      Examine your priorities and make sure they are where they should be; change what you need to according to God’s Will for your life, not your readers. Next girl, you get ahold of that plow God has given you and you plow..don’t look BACK! :)
      IN HIS SERVICE
      Carol Esquibel
      Missionary to England

    • PJ Friesen - Alberta says:

      Rest well my friend, and may the Holy Spirit bring you peace and comfort during your break. Have a wonderful Christmas and blessings to you and your family!

    • Heather Johnson says:

      WELL DONE! TO listen to the call to BE STILL is one of the most important. Great Job.

  2. You will be richly blessed for knowing that your priorities need to be honed and you need to care for yourself and your family. I will pray for your refreshment and a joy filled holiday season.

  3. By the way, what did you major in? I’ve never heard of anyone besides the preacher boys taking Greek! :)

  4. Praying you receive rest and refreshment!

  5. Oh no…I just found you, now you are leaving. I pray you find what you are looking for. Best of luck to you and your new adventures. <3

  6. I think you are doing the right thing, Courtney. I have always wondered how women with young children do it…manage a blog and all. It is time consuming and your children and husband need you much more than we all do. Your children will be grown up and gone before you realize it. Enjoy the precious time that you have with them. Your family is your number one priority and should get the best of you. Many blessings, Lori

    • I couldn’t agree more with Lori’s comments. Not sure what it would take to pour into your ministry without pouring too much of yourself out. Your family is MOST important, Courtney. I know I don’t have to tell you that God gave them to you as your FIRST mission field. I will miss your posts. I will miss YOU. But I support you in thought and prayers as you consider how to move forward in the year to come. Maybe posting only 1-2 times/week without exception, a day of “Comfy” (love Janelle), and a day of guest posts (chosen over an hour on the weekend)???? Maybe no weekend posts (everyone’s out spinning wheels over the weekends anyway, right?) I don’t know. But I do know I support you, Courtney. I’ve kept a personal blog for years and even THAT was hard (robs time from family, who prefers me to be active with them, not typing on the ‘puter). I’ll “see” you on FB over the holidays, but until you return here, have a blessed and Merry Christmas and a Happy new year too.
      Blessings,
      Toni
      p.s. just a quick chance to say…..we are LOVING CC. Absolutely loving it. ;)

  7. I will definitely miss your post but understand exactly why you need a break. Enjoy your break and I pray that God will give you the strength to move in the direction He is leading you. See you in 2013…until then Merry Christmas!!! Praying for you.

  8. Rest well, sweet friend and enjoy the holidays! Muah!

  9. KellyK(@RNCCRN9706) says:

    I’m bummed of course. Your blog has been a HUGE inspiration to me this past year! I know I’ve told you that before. Enjoy your break. See ya next year!

  10. Very proud of you! There are seasons when we just have to get things off of our plate. I learned in a Bible Study once that God has not given us more to accomplish than can be accomplished in a 24 hour period. If we’re feeling constantly overwhelmed and like we need more hours in our day then it’s probably time to ask God what we have on our plate that He didn’t give us. Glad you are taking care of yourself and looking to Him for much needed answers and clarity. Blessings!

  11. You take care of YOU! You are very wise to know when to slow down and wait on God! Especially do not ignore your family! As a teacher looking back, I know how that can happen before you know it. Take a deep breath and enjoy each moment. :)

  12. Thanks for being a good example! Will miss you but thank you for sharing your heart and story. I’ve grown quite a bit as a home maker from this blog and realized how to better serve my family, thank you for that!
    laura

  13. Rest.

  14. Courtney, you will be greatly missed! I enjoy your blog and teaching very much but I understand you needing to refresh and rest. Know that I will be praying for you.

  15. I COMPLETELY understand. You’ll be missed! Enjoy the time with the people who matter the most. Facebook has so consumed my life that I feel it may be time to step back too. More often lately I’ve been trying to picture my future–maybe 10-20-30 years and how I’ll look back on these years. So much time has been wasted online. Wasted worrying about people who either don’t think about me, don’t care about me, aren’t actual friends to me (how pathetic when I actually see it in words!!). I feel we could all benefit from a big step back. I yearn for my life pre-facebook. I don’t even remember what it was like in terms of connecting with people–that was pre-texting days for me too! I think I need to simplify. Connect via phone/letters/email. On our deathbeds, we will look back at our life–I want mine to be filled with memories of games played, walks taken, time spent, a laughter filled home, a 21st century technology distraction-free zone. You are a great encouragement to me, I thank you for your candid thoughts on everything, but I most appreciate the marriage posts–being a Christian homemaker and wife these days is not looked highly upon by our society. thankfully we don’t have our society to answer to as we pass from this life to eternal life, but I thank you for showing me where my priority as a WIFE and MOM needs to be. God, husband, children. Blessings to you and your family. Merry Christmas and a peaceful new year to you!

    • Maureen, I just had to take a moment to say I can relate to what you’ve shared. I have to say, I’ve only ever sent 3 (yes, three) texts and they were all to my dh. We did away with cell phones years ago (we have a “pay-as-you-go” for travel and/or emergencies like power outages only.) We laptops and a desktop but almost literally no other technology and for the reasons you shared. I’m not unrealistic. I know my children are growing up in a different world and that technology will be a much bigger part of their lives than it was mine. But they can text when they’re much older; not now. Now is the time for bike rides and butterflies, dolls and dogs. They only get one childhood and we do NOT want it heavily weighed by tv, video games, texting, etc. Likewise, I don’t want my mothering to be lost in a similar pool of tunnel vision. I read a great book by Eric Brende called “Better Off: Flipping the Switch on Technology.” Check it out. SO inspiring.

  16. As a worship leader, I can completely relate. Although I know I am called to lead others into His presence, there is sometimes nothing sweeter than just blending in with His people and soaking in His presence. I call it “needing to be filled up in order to be poured out”…..may He bless you richly for your obedience. Enjoy your family. :-)

  17. Way to go. We all need to listen to that inner voice more. Rest, relax, rejuvenate, and be refreshed for 2013. We will still be here when you come back!

  18. Thank you Courtney! Thank you for all you do in serving and leading the many women who visit your blog, read your book, hear you speak. Thank you even more for being honest & transparent each time you share your heart. Thank you most of all for being sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit. As God directs our steps, it’s wise for us to clear a path to be able to hear His voice and see where He is moving us.

    God recently moved me to take a break from blogging too. Although the blog He has given me is still relatively small, it had become to take over, spilling into spaces that were meant for Him and my family. I had to be reminded that ultimately, my husband and children are my first ministry! Now I only blog when I feel compelled to by the Holy Spirit (which is how it should have been all along) :)

    May you find God’s richest blessings during this time of peaceful quiet and rest.
    “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

  19. Psalm 46:10
    Have a wonderful time being still with God for a while Courtney.

  20. Courtney, God bless you. I will be praying for you and anxiously awaiting your return. Have a wonderful Christmas season.

  21. I just started reading your blog about a month ago, and I will say what I like most about it is your positive, uplifting, and encouraging posts. So many blog posts are so transparent that they seem to only dwell on the negative and emotional issues and then throw in a one line note of encouragement at the end. I like that your blog posts are the reverse – you show enough transparency where others can relate, but focus more on encouraging and uplifting in the rest of your post.

    Enjoy this special Christmas season!

  22. Merry Christmas! Enjoy your break, you family and some down time!

  23. Courtney,
    I admire the fact that you can see that you need some time to renew. Even Jesus took time to be still and pray, away from the crowds to center himself. Enjoy this time away. Light your candle every day, as a reminder of the Holy Spirit working in you to guide you and to give you the courage to shut down the busyness until the New Year. We grow in silence.
    Bless you.

  24. I admire you for being transparent to us. there is nothing wrong with a break. You have to hear God on this. You have to follow His leading, for that is when you are truly free. As hard as it is to think about, but even in the middle of great public success, if that is not where God is calling you at that time, then you do feel dull and like you are struggling almost. You take your time, listen to God’s voice and you will make the right decisions for yourself and your obligations

  25. Courtney, can’t tell you what a blessing your proverbs book has been to me, and my family. It has been so energizing and encouraging to me. I think you are making a wonderful decision and look forward to reading after you have a break! You deserve it! Enjoy your family!
    Briita

  26. Blessings to you and yours, Courtney. Praying as you are obedient and take a time of rest for your body, mind, and soul. I bet you come back on fire!

  27. wishing you all the best :) Dr. Sauer was one of my favorite professors at Moody. He and his lovely wife Sue actually did our premarital counseling

  28. Thank you for sharing this and being so open in these obstacles your facing. I’ve been struggling in these areas as well (although my blog isn’t nearly as big!). I have taken a step back from blogging world as well to pray about God’s purpose and direction not only for my blog but in my role as a mother, wife, and Christian. I’m comforted to know that I’m not the only one facing these challenges and will say a prayer for God’s direction to be clear to you.

  29. You are a wise woman, Courtney. God bless you during this break from blogging. May He grant you peace and clarity. I’ve certainly enjoyed your blog over the years, as it as blessed my heart as well in the areas of loving Jesus, marriage, parenting, and homeschooling. See you in 2013. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  30. I don’t have a quarter of what you have on your plate and I have been feeling the same way.
    Regrouping and praying, God already gave me my “word” for the new year…”Release”! Last year he gave me the word “Less” and already he is giving me “Release” for 2013. I continue to seek Him for wisdom and guidance to prioritize well and be effective in His Kingdom…by learning what it means to trust Him, hear Him and follow where He leads… even if it is off the trail I (and others) assume is the one.

    He knows the way.

    He will do this for you, Courtney. Thank you for your authenticity. I think the Spirit moves not just on the heart one individual but on many and sometimes the confirmation becomes clearer to all that God is wooing, speaking and longing to be heard when one is brave enough to heed that still, small , barely heard voice.

    Trust Him and follow where He leads.
    In His Grace, Dawn

  31. Good for you!!! Your ministry via your blog has truly helped me as a young wife and mommy. My husband has noticed a difference. You have encouraged me to find joy in homemaking. I was burnt out and your tips etc. helped. I’d write more but it’s on my phone so it’s difficult. :). I do have a question when your kiddos were younger (mine are 28 months and 8 months) what did you do to help keep your sanity if you will. It’s so busy and the lack of sleep some days I just feel like I’m surviving. Merry CHRISTmas enjoy your sweet family! Ps don’t feel bad for taking a break and even extending it longer then December. You will be missed but first comes God then your family.

    • The younger years are so hard sometimes, take shortcuts on things that are not important: paper plates occasionally, doubling up meals and freezing, getting out of the house, Flylady are a few things that helped me during that time. It really does go quickly, try and enjoy – see the funny side of the mess and chaos! Pray, pray and pray.

  32. Courtney, I just have to say this, because I think it’s an answer to my prayers, and I want you to know it…I am blessed that you will be taking a break. I am completely new to your blog, and I feel very blessed to have found it, but I confess, with all the information here and all the extras on your Facebook and Twitter, I was overwhelmed! I was feeling really far behind, and feeling a bit like I would never be able to go through everything here, and still keep up on your new posts. And I don’t want to miss a thing! I’m learning so much, and I don’t want that to stop. But while you take this break, I will not feel so rushed. I am sure there are others like me, who feel similarly. So rest well in the knowledge that this break will not only bless you, but it will also bless others :)

  33. You deserve the break! Now it will give me a chance to catch up on some of the great posts I haven’t been able to read and your videos! Love and hugs!!

  34. Enjoy your time away. It is always best if we listen to that inner voice. I will miss you and look forward to your return. Hugs, Bobbi Jo

  35. Courtney,
    Of course you know this but I want to encourage you none the less because I KNOW what it feels like to walk away from ministry.

    We are not meant to do it all. Enjoy your time receiving from our Savior. Life is all about growing in Him and sometimes our growth takes place when we’re up in the hills receiving His salve and comfort. Don’t feel guilty in any way because this ministry, (your ministry), is really His ministry. All things are made by Him and for Him.

    He’s making you better as you lay down your pursuits; pursuits that are honorable and noble and designed to bring Him glory, but pursuits that have left you empty. Because you love Him, He’ll fill your cup back up to where it’s overflowing again.

    Don’t listen to the lies from the Enemy, either! :)

  36. I agree with all of these comments here and have actually been so encouraged by this blog post in just you telling us what all you have said NO to :) I struggle with saying no and I struggle even more with feeling guilty over not being involved in all the things I think I should be involved in. It’s so great that you’ll have this time to reevaluate and move forward in the direction that the Lord is leading – for your good and for His glory! :) You are an encouragement to so many of us but we all know you must be that for your husband and children first! Thank you!

  37. You have our prayers. We will be here when you return.

  38. I will be praying for you while you take a break. You’ve worked so hard for a break. I am always encouraged, enlightened, and sometimes convicted when I read your posts. Thank you so much for allowing God to use you in the ways that He has. Enjoy this season focused on Him, and enjoying your family, and being renewed. We’ll see you when you get back. Love you! :-)

  39. Will be praying for you! Thanks for all the ways you have inspired, prayed for, and blessed us! Enjoy the time away! Merry Christmas!

    Melissa

  40. I always love your posts, but this sounds like a much needed break. I hope you manage to find rest and refreshment. Good on you for protecting your marriage and family by doing this. It’s not so easy to say no – especially to those whom you care about. Enjoy your time off. I look forward to your return!

    P.s. Thanks for being such a blessing to me through your wise and helpful posts this year. I appreciate you!

  41. I have been following your blog for a year now. Thanks for sharing your wisdom. You have inspired me. You are a beautiful woman and you are in my prayers. May God bless this time of stillness.

  42. Courtney, I will miss your encouragment, but we know God has called for your peace during this time! I can understand how life can completly overwhelm us. I Pray that you have a blessed Christmas season with your family and the Peace and tranquility that this time of year brings! We know you will come back refreshed, and with a newness of mind and heart!! Love The Encouragement!!!

  43. Your post has inspired me to take a serious look at my own life and “simplify”! Thank you for sharing your situation with us Courtney! We all need to make choices that are good for ourselves and our families…and no, they are not always easy choices. You are wise to make time for yourself and give yourself a well deserved break. I will miss your posts immensley and know that you will blessed during this time of reflection. Take care of you and enjoy some good ‘ol recharing! :)

  44. Wow… I am such a newbie here and I must say that you inspired me to take blogging seriously as a ministry! I completely understand where you are coming from but I will be anxiously awaiting your return! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to your wonderful family!

    God bless,
    Jessica @ Proverbs Living

  45. You are a wise woman, my friend. When my husband became a pastor one of our concerns was that our children not become lost to the ministry. We did not want that. We had known adults who had been PK’s and some of them had some deep resentment there. So we put up some boundaries in place in order to protect our marriage, our children and our family life

    We need to do the same things with our blogs. My blog is not very big, but for a long time I was barely blogging at all. I blogged once or twice a week or not at all. I took blogging breaks. In fact, I even prayed about quitting. I just couldn’t keep up with my “real” life and my blog life. Something had to give, so it was my blog.

    Just recently (last month in fact) I really felt that God was opening a way for me to be more active on my blog.

    He will totally refresh you and regroup you. He’s good that way. He can sort through all the emotion and all the responsibility and all the chaos and show us His truth so that we don’t miss it.

    You know you will have lots of ladies praying for you, my friend. I imagine you even have a lot of great contacts who will be happy to do a weekly guest post for you should you decide to go in that direction as well. God bless and thank you so much for blessing us with all your posts week after week!

  46. Sis, thank you for your transparency. We all need breaks, I took one a few months ago from all social media and just kept my blog. It has been the biggest blessing and has helped me. I will keep you in prayer and will pray for direction, wisdom and guidance for you. You have blessed and touched so many lives this blog is a ministry from the Lord, but Od and family come first. I posted this on my blog today that ministered to my heart….
    When nothing is coming in, nothing can go out. If then, you and I are to have an effective ministry to others, we must first be filled. Let’s fill ourselves up with Jesus, go bust out your bible girl! Sometimes social media can over take us, consume our time. It’s good to take a sabbatical from it all, clear your head and be still and hear the Lords soft still voice. I love you girl, I feel like I’ve known you forever and I’ve never met you in person. That’s how much you bless me. I do pray you come back and will pray for the most blessed break ever! Now go love on your family.

    Love,
    Adrienne R 

  47. I’m thankful for your heart, Courtney. I will pray that you have discernment and renewal of heart. Blessings to you, friend!

  48. Good for you recognizing your need to take this break to renew and reconnect with yourself and your family. God is good and he will bring you to the rest you need. Though I only know you through your blog, I love you as my sister in Christ. Take care. I’ll be here when you get back.

  49. Hi Courtney,

    I’ve never commented on your blog before, but have been a faithful reader for the better part of this year. I’ve completely enjoyed your perspective on life, your sense of humor, your sincerity, your authenticity, your transparency, your heart for women, your heart for the family, and most of all your desire to spread God’s love through your life and words. You have truly been a blessing to me and I’ve always marveled at how you blogging ladies keep up with life! I am in ministry as well and understand to an extent the pressures it can put on your family and marriage. I pray that you will find rest- both for your body and soul; and that your spirit will be refreshed and re-filled, that your creativity will be enhanced and that your path will be made clear. I hope this Christmas season is truly a time of experiencing Emmanuel – God with us- for you and your family.

  50. Julie in Scotland says:

    Dear Courtney
    It is wise to have a little time to fold the hands (Ecclesiastes), you have inspired, challenged, encouraged and lamented all in the name of the Lord and for His glory! It is just as honouring to be still before him, to listen and wait upon Him. I know He will bless you and your family in this season of life and we, your blogging family rejoice that you can be used mightily even in a period of rest. It’s a reminder to us to know when enough is enough! Have a very merry Christmas, enjoy your children and please say a big thank you to your family from me. Every time you say yes to us you say no to your family so I recognise that this ministry is sacrificial on their part too. Bless you Joseph family.
    Julie

  51. Ps Can’t wait for the book release!

  52. Courtney, you are choosing the wise way! There are divine connections, but there are also divine DISconnections. Both are blessed and right in their own time. You are and will continue to be a blessing!

  53. If anything in life is wearing you down, and it’s not absolutely essential, it’s right to stop and prayerfully consider how to go forward. Praying you have a wonderful Christmas season, and are given clear guidance as to the way forward. You will be missed, but of all the times to do it, you chose a great one – we are all busy getting ready for Christmas, too! Thank you for blessing us abundantly so far, and may you be abundantly blessed as you seek God’s case on this matter. You are loved from afar. xxxxxxxxx

  54. All the best as you take your break and get refreshed! We’ll miss your posts, but we’ll still be around when you come back. I applaud you for making your family and spiritual life a priority.

  55. Thank you for your blog and your honesty.
    God bless.

  56. That is so wonderful that you have the determination and follow through to take a break! I love the passage in Mark where Jesus had been busy healing people, and early the next morning he went out for time alone with the Father. When His disciples finally found Him they chided Him for not being available for the people and told Him to hurry back and finish healing more people. Jesus replied “no, it’s time to move on to the next place”. Even though there was great need in that village Jesus left and went on, following His Father’s will. There will always be people clamoring for us to meet their needs, yet “no” is sometimes the most spiritual answer we can give. So thrilled to hear how you are saying “no” at this time! What an encouraging example for each of us following your blog.

  57. Blessings to you and your family, enjoy your break, I am sure we all look forward to your return. With Love. Tara.

  58. Courtney,
    Enjoy your time off. My prayers are with you while your away. May God Bless you. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

  59. Courtney, you have been an inspiration to me this year with your blogs and positive comments.
    Rest well, enjoy your family and enjoy your time ‘Walking with the King’. I will miss you, but your husband and children are of greater importance.
    Best of luck.
    Have a lovely break, a joyful Christmas and I look forward to reading your posts next year.
    God bless.
    Cheryl

  60. Robin Still says:

    Dear Courtney,
    I admire you for knowing what is important…so many of us just simply keep on with the keeping on to a point where we are so exhausted that we just give up…therfore when we do things we don’t do them well. Enjoy your well deserved break…relax…enjoy the King and all He has to offer

    Blessings, Merry Christmas….

    Smiles,
    Robin :)

  61. Stephanie W says:

    Enjoy your much deserved time off! I discovered your blog earlier this year and have been so very blessed by your real talk!! Looking forward to the next level in 2013! Enjoy Christmas and your beautiful family!! Praying for you!! Thanks for all you do for the Kingdom!!

  62. Encouragement to you, dear sister! Thank you for your enthusiasm, godly direction, and joy. Joy abundantly oozes out of your posts and refreshes my soul. I trust the Lord to richly bless your down time and look forward to 2013 when you return.

  63. Good for you, Courtney!! The Lord will bless you and your family because you are doing the right thing! God instituted the family before he instituted the church, blogs or the many other things that consume our time. I’ll be praying for you and your family. May this month be a season of rest, rejuvenation and peace.

    I love you and the work you do…
    Mary
    http://www.marybonner.net/

  64. So glad you’ve recognized that you need a break. Have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy every minute. Looking forward to your posts in 2013 but only when you’re ready.

  65. DeeAnn Stichter says:

    Courtney,
    You are a tremendous blessing to so many! Thank you for what you have written here! I pray you have blessed time of rest and rejuvenation! We will be so pleased to see your return in the new year!
    God’s blessings on you and your family,
    DeeAnn

  66. Courtney, I pray this time away will be a great time of healing for you and your family. We all need a break once in a while, and that you recognized it before it became beyond “repair” is great! God bless you and yours, and have a very Merry Christmas! ~Melody~

  67. May you have a well deserved break, Courtney. I will miss you as I follow you daily on your blog but I completely understand that you need a break and time to “….be still and know God”, time to listen and time to put your energy (that you have left) into your family. Looking forward to you being refreshed in 2013! All the best to you!

  68. I’m a sneak by reader and I am so grateful for your passion and determination to lead other’s to the cross. Thank you Courtney!

    Enjoy your break! Never miss an opportunity to R E S T !!
    See you soon!

  69. Jane Smith says:

    I adore your blog. God has used your blog to speak to me & encourage me! I completely understand your need to take a break & am very proud of you for not being afraid to say ‘no’. I’m sure it was easy but youb’ your family will benefit from this time. I’m so thankful for your obedience to His voice. I love your sweet spirit. I hope you get to enjoy some ‘down’ time. Merry Christmas to you & your family!

  70. Oh, I will miss your email updates, but I know just how wonderful it can be to follow Jesus’ example to take time apart and just be with God. I know you will enjoy this time with Him and your sweet family. Merry CHRISTmas!!

  71. Thanks for sharing. Even by doing this, you are ministering to our hearts. There are so many of us that need to rest and refresh this season. I hope to do the same!

  72. I will be praying for you during this time of refreshment. What a wonderful witness you are. Listening for God and yielding to the Holy Spirit.
    Merry Christmas and abundant blessings upon you.

  73. Incredible to read this this morning as I am contemplating the same while I seek guidance for the direction of my blog and business as well. Thank you for your honesty and your example! I sometimes have trouble hearing and listening when the Lord speaks to me but by seeing others live out the example that He has set forth for us makes it much easier for slow learners like myself ;)

    Many blessings on you and your family during this time of rest!

    Lesley
    xoxo

  74. Don’t mean to add to your emails BUT I did the same thing in November to get my home in order. I said NO to much and had to regroup. It was refreshing and you will feel great too!

  75. I don’t know if “I am proud of you” is the right word… but I am! :) This is so wonderful to me! Thank you for allowing yourself this time. It reminds me that I need to take this time too. I am not as dedicated to my blog ministry as you are at this new stage, and so I feel like it is such a blessing to know its okay to take the time for you first. When your priorities are in order, I believe you will be blessed greater! Praying that this time is refreshing for you!

  76. Sending up a prayer for you, that God will refresh and renew you! Thank you for having the wisdom and courage to know when to pause! Have a very merry Christmas. With luv, Sheila!

  77. Tracey M Powell says:

    Hi Courtney~
    I’ve subscribed to your blog for about 6 months now. You are one of my faves! I found Good Morning Girls through your blog, and between you and Angela my life has never been the same! I understand being overwhelmed with too much though. I also understand saying YES to everything because you feel bad saying NO! I have learned exactly that though – you have to say NO to some things for your own health and sanity. We can’t do it all. I think it’s great you are taking a break to pray and reflect. This is what I like to call my “God-time.” I definitely need more of it myself right now. I, too, am at a busy/changing season in my life. It’s at these times, more than ever, that we have to look to God, or Satan will try to sneak in and steal our joy. I pray that you find what you are seeking this holiday season. I look forward to seeing you back in the new year (if that’s what you choose to do). Just know that what you are doing through your blog is changing lives……I know it’s changed mine and will be forever grateful.
    Thanks!
    Tracey

  78. rest :)

  79. Thank you for listening to the Lord and obeying Him. God always blesses obedience.

  80. Dear Courtney,
    Your heart comes through so clearly. I just got through with another round of “Boundaries” – this time with a group of friends, all of us from different churches now after an agonizing split in our church. The time together has been precious, as well as learning to re-establish our boundaries. May God bless you as you establish this boundary to protect and refresh yourself, and may you be surrounded with undemanding people that will just love on you!
    Blessings from the Ozarks,
    Esther Joy

  81. “I’m coming from a place of no…to protect my family, my ministry and my sanity.” It takes a humble person to know when to say No. You are an amazing woman of God. You have taught me so much in the two years I have followed you. Thank you for being a light in this dark world where stay at home moms who love God is looked down at. Praying for rest, relaxation and restoration to you and your home.

    AMANDA

  82. WOW , as I was cleaning up my kitchen yesterday I was thinking”no” needs to sneak past my lips more often . I have such a hard time saying no. I feel like I need to do it , Or at least do it so no one else has to . So I will have to say this blog was a on time one for me for my season . Life changes in our life can do many things for us or against us . I think finding that balance with God is the best thing any of us can do . I am so hungry to be all wrapped up beneath his wings. I just keep getting humbled and humbled daily . So I am thinking when the Lords gets me where he needs me to be I will be able to inhale more grace than I can probably take in . May your days of break with the Lord come with double blessings ! Take your time sharping your ax . May the Lord reveal to you when the time has come . :) blessings !

  83. I wish we all had the courage to pull back and regroup when we really need to. Enjoy your break!

  84. I admire you for this decision and respect you for realizing that sometimes you just have to say NO! I often wonder how “bloggers” do it without feeling totally overwhelmed. My prayers are with you during this time.

  85. Blessing to you and your family during this break. You will be missed. I am enjoying lighting a candle and praying for peace in my home, the music playing(which I did before, but only quietly in the kitchen). My prayers will be with you and your family that you will be rested and restored by God and come back sharpened.

  86. This is the bravest thing you’ve done, even amongst the book writing, tv, and speaking engagements. Obedience takes courage and I know God is going to bring you back in His timing and you will be blessed!

    I pray this will be a sweet time of rest for you and your family will not know what to do with all the attention:) They will treasure it!

    Thanks for all you’ve shared and I look forward to your return:)

  87. Great decision! My philosophy has always been that you only get one chance with your kids and family, one chance to give it your all. There are no re-do’s when we get to the end. So give it your all now and there will be no regrets in the end. Why is it so hard to take stuff off our plate when we need to….best to you!

  88. Blessings on you and your family, Courtney. May you return with much vigor and rejuvenation!

  89. Thank you for your ministry. I was pregnant and on strict bed rest. This was my 4th time doing this. The times before I missed out on groups and life trying to have babies.in the process of trying I carried one to 23 weeks he was called home at 4 months old. And one to full term she was called home at 1 month old. So my 3rd pregnancy was scary. I only had visitors from church and family once in a while which is great but when on strict bed rest its just not enough. So when I ran across this women living well it was and is the most amazing blessing. I was able to attend a bible study from my bed. At 22 weeks of pregnancy they expected me to deliver at any time. With your studies I could put my nose in the Bible read and pray to forget what was really going on. God has blessed me me with 2 beautiful boys . I know you are wondering yes I carried the forth to almost full term and delivered at 36 weeks. And the 3rd was also carried to almost full term at 37 weeks. I have saved all the studies I will go back and redo the proverbs wife since I didn’t get to finish . I will be here when you get back and will be praying for where he wants to lead you. and this blog.This ministry has been an amazing blessing to me and my family. Thank you so much. I thank God for you.

  90. Beth Morrow says:

    Much wisdom! Have a beautiful Christmas!

  91. Courtney, I have learned so much from you the last year and a half I’ve been following you here and on facebook. I completely understand and am glad you are doing what is best for you. There is a season for everything. Thank you for your ministry to women. Reading your blogs and taking your suggestions has made me a better wife and mother. We need more women like you who shine for Christ in all they do. God bless you!

  92. What a wonderful example you are to us. Being able to say no takes strength from the Lord. And then there is that peace. May you be restored and revived to be about the Lord’s business in your life with Him, your husband, and your children.

  93. Though the talents God gave you, you have been a huge blessing in my life! Thank you!

    I pray stepping away will rejuvenate you and give you the strength to do the work God has for you. We’ll all be sad if He tells you not to blog! :(. Yet it is certainly MorE important to do what He wants you to do then to make us happy!! Lol

    I am first year homeschool mom of three girls and have truly enjoyed and been encouraged by your blog! I’m so thankful God had me stumble across you, it has truly been an important part of my spiritual and emotional journey!!

    God bless you!

  94. You’ll be missed but welcomed back with loving arms when you return! God bless you for keeping your priotities straight and knowing when to say no & step back a bit. Enjoy this time with your family and relax!!

    I also loved Dr. Sauer!!! Sadly, I didn’t have him for a class (my husband did) but we still had many encounters & lovely talks. :)

    God bless you & your family! Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!! :)

  95. God’s peace and blessing to you during this time of rest! I applaud your courage to say no and to recognize your need for a break. ENJOY!!

  96. Oh, I LOVED Dr. Sauer! And what great wisdom! I’m praying that this time will be truly refreshing and that the Lord would give you tons of ideas while you’re taking a break and that you will come back excited and ready to dive back in with a renewed passion!

  97. You will be missed but I pray that you will get the rest and direction you need during this break. I am so glad I found your blog a few months ago. You have been such an inspiration to me!

  98. My dear sister in Christ,
    You are absolutely doing the right thing! We all have seasons of down time – even God Himself created the 7th day for rest, so please take this time to pray, rest and enjoy your family. I have just come out of a season of saying no; it puts everything back into perspective and really lets you figure out what God wants you to do and which direction to go. I have seen you shine on here and I have seen people be pretty ugly to you; it is only right you take this time for yourself. Thank you for your wonderful encouragement, Bible studies, recipes, etc. I look forward to “seeing” you back in 2013. Merry Christmas!!

  99. Cathy Lange says:

    Courtney you are such an inspiration and joy to read, I will truly miss you! You are the first blog I go to every morning! My God bless and refresh you during your time of rest. Take care and have a Merry Christmas!

  100. Kristin King says:

    Courtney, I will continue to pray for you as you sit at the feet of Jesus. May God bless you and your family this holiday season and I look forward to your return in 2013.

    Saying no to so many good things is difficult but necessary. I am still learning to say no so that I can say yes to my family. Ultimately you have to commit yourself completely to God and those He put in your realm of influence (specifically your husband and children). Thank you for the inspiration that you have given me over the past year and a half that I have been following your blog. I have seen many positive changes in my life and I know that God directed me to your blog to help initiate those changes.

  101. Hi sweet Courtney!! I think that’s awesome that you are taking some time to refresh! :) you are so faithful & dedicated & we all need to refresh sometimes. :) I was searching the “archives” the other day for Bible Study info & came across a few of my new favorite posts- the one where you list the Bible studies you have led & the ones you have taken! I’m a bible study fanatic & got some great ideas for 2013 studies! Hope you & your family enjoy the Christmas season.

    Lots of love,
    Ashley

  102. Courtney I too just found you, and await your return. I too have found myself in a similar situation and the decision is a hard one to take – hoping that others understand. I am a bit fearful of what lies ahead, but I do pray about it everyday!
    Thank you and God Bless for your insight to realize this break is what YOU need and the wisdom and courage to take it!

  103. We will miss you, but hope the break will be a wonderful time of refreshment for you and your family.

  104. Courtney- I know of many women in the blogging world who are taking a break for similar reasons, but most do not have the readership you have. That leads to me to really want to pray for you. I know that numbers are not supposed to matter, but let’s face it… often times they do. They are a huge motivator to keep doing. I respect you so much more for your discipline to do what is right and put your first priorities first. You will be tempted to come back- you probably will crave having “influence”… but remember what God asks of You… to love Him with your whole heart, soul, mind and strength and to love your neightbor as yourself. If you are drying up and to tired to do those first two commandements, to love and nurture your marriage, and to care for your family… don’t sacrifice those special callings for this.

    A dear friend of mine once said, God never calls us to sacrifice our first callings in order to do any other ministry… if it is a call from God… they should enhance one another. I will continue to pray for you- to build you up- sharpen your ax so that when you do come back you are even stronger. I will pray for your marriage that this time focused away would be so rich- for you spiritually but also in your marriage. May God bless you and keep you and give you peace and a breathe of fresh air.

    Your Sister in Christ,
    Angie

  105. O Courtney, praise GOD! for the word NO! I too am in a season of saying NO. No can save our sanity, our faith and our families! Many will show dissapointment. BUT those closest to you will be blessed! I call this season a circling of my wagons. I am putting my wagons round my family as we are in a pre-adoptive placement. The Lord is forcing us into a simpler way of living. We are only to feed, love, nurture, rest and repeat! :) Love what you are doing and what you are doing will LOVE YOU!
    refresh and renew my friend!

  106. Courtney, Enjoy! Enjoy! Enjoy!

    Enjoy your down time, enjoy time with your family and enjoy time with yourself. This just shows what a strong women you are, you are knowing and Willing to take a break instead of letting yourself being spread to thin and being spiritually and mentally drained.

    I’m reading “The Resolution of Women”, and after I read your article, a quote from the booked popped in to my mind: “Sometimes the best, most empowering word you can learn to utter is no”

    Merry Christmas!!!

  107. Courtney – Just want to say thank you for being a consistent, positive, Godly influence through all that you do in this cyberspace! I have been saved for 18 years and do know my Father and His Word, but your blogs and the resources you have so lovingly shared with us have helped me to not grow stale in my faith, to remember what my priorities are, and to know that I am not the only one who sometimes struggles with it all. I hope you know the lasting impact you have made and I pray for it all to be returned to you – especially during this time of rest!
    Remember that there is no condemnation (or guilt or shame!) for those in Christ! So I am praying for you to have a PEACEFUL, MEANINGFUL, SUPER-FUN time with your family. Nurture yourself, your soul, your babies and your marriage and just BE for awhile! =0) And know that God is keeping watch over all of your followers in the meantime! (He’s got your back! lol). God bless you and Merry Christmas!
    An appreciative sister,
    Tina

  108. NOOOOOOOO! Feels so good to say sometimes. Enjoy your break : )

  109. Eline Rambo says:

    Courtney, Sounds like a wise decision to me. Listening to the Holy Spirit instead of doing what might look right in everyone else’s eyes. “…He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.: Proverbs 11:25(NIV) I pray God’s refreshing upon you during this season! Merry Christmas!

  110. I am so sad to hear this as I just found your blog LAST WEEK! I completely understand though… and this gives me GREAT opportunity to go through your blog from the beginning as I aspire to be a Godly influence in my family through my actions… you are quite the inspiration, Courtney.

    Enjoy your time of rest and I can’t wait to be sharpened when you return!

    Walk with the King!!!! <— I love this!

    Delaney
    "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." – 1 Thess 5:18 (ESV)

  111. Courtney,
    I hope you have a wonderful, restful break! I will really miss reading your blog posts. They are always encouraging and heartfelt, and they are the first email I want to read as soon as I see it in my inbox. Your Facebook posts are a breath of fresh air, LIGHT, & encouragement amidst the stupid stuff most of my FB “friends” post!
    Enjoy your time with your family, and I really look forward to your return!!

  112. Courtney, I understand! I could go on and on, but just know that I’ll be praying for you like I have done many times. You have been a blessing to me and many of my friends. Take some time and rest! We’ve never met, but I feel like we have and I’ve grown to love you. Merry Christmas!

  113. Courtney, you are doing a phenomenal job! Enjoy your much deserved break. No apologies needed.

  114. Courtney,

    As I read through some of the responses already posted, I can’t help but praise the Lord for the support and encouragement you’ve been given. You’ve done so much to enrich our lives through your blog and hopefully, we are all blessing you by letting you know what you mean to all of us. I hope that nobody will begrudge your decision (need) to take some time off. If they do, shame on them for being so selfish. Even Jesus took time away from the throngs following him to rest and regroup! If He needed a break, now much more so do we, as frail human beings, need one?! I’ll be praying for you during your hiatus and hope that you come back refreshed and renewed. Blessings to you as you look to our God for His direction in your life going forward. May He cover you with peace, love and joy.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family with love!

  115. Dear Courtney,

    I know it was God that I found your website! I found your website at a very critical time in my marriage when I didn’t understand my husband, his role, my role, and was ready to divorce him. We married September 2012 and I felt like everything just wasn’t working. I was stressed and tired of feeling defeated in my marriage. I didn’t know what to pray or how to handle situations as we are blending a family. He has 2 sons and I have 1 son, and this is his 2nd marriage and my first marriage. The drama that became a everyday norm was driving me insane BUT I found your site and indulged in it for hours, listening and connecting with what you were saying and teaching. I changed how I talked to him, started to respect him as my husband, and PRAYED for us fervently! Today just a few weeks later, my marriage is in a GREAT place and the love we both feel is so strong so THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!! I know you need a break and that’s understandable, but know your works are NOT in vain!

    Merry Christmas and Be Blessed!

  116. Glad to hear that you are taking this much needed break. I think more of us need to do the same. Enjoy this special time with your beautiful family. Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and many of God’s wonderful blessings.

  117. Kudos to you Courtney! My “blogging” isn’t of the magnitude yours is and I have often prayed for it to be a ministry, a help to younger moms and wives, and I have dreamt of having a huuuuge audience but then I read of bloggers such as yourself, or Joy Forney, who have had to step aside from the multitude of duties they hold. I learned many years ago to say “No,” and it was the absolute best thing I did. God has a way for us to use the different seasons of our lives He gives us, we must be good stewards of His time. What might be good now, may be great later. I am beginning a new season as the last of my 4 children will be graduating our homeschool this coming year, so my season is changing. I am looking to Him to see what He would have me do with it. Our girls are still home, 20, 19, and 19, and are preparing to be that help meet to a Godly man someday. Our prayers are with what God has for them and what He has prepared for our son to do upon graduation, so my seasons will be differnt. It is hard, but I will never, never regret the “No” I have had to say for us as a family to be obedient to God’s will through the past several years, and God will most certainly honor your obedience to Him. Praises to the One True God and Savior, Jesus Christ! Have a most glorious Merry CHRISTmas!!!
    Always Experiencing Him,
    Jody

  118. Good for you, Courtney. You have been a blessing to thousands, including myself, and therefore my family. May God bless you during this time and restore your soul.

  119. Thnak you for sharing from your heart. Life can get very “busy” doing good and sometimes we just need a break. I’m so glad God is allowing you this time to regroup and renew all that He means to you. May you have a wonderful Christmas and may the light and the love of our Heavenly Father shine brightly in your heart this season. After all He Is The Reason For The Season. God Bless You. Jean

  120. Courtney,
    What an inspiration you are to so many of us women who strive to be more like Christ in our daily walk. I’ll be praying for you in this time of “rest” and “regrouping”. Good for you that you have learned at a young age what it means to listen to the voice of God and to say no when you really want to say yes. Blessings to you and your family as you concentrate on what the Lord has in store for you.

  121. Have a nice break, Courtney. Wishing you blessings and peace.

  122. I totally understand girlfriend! I’ve only been doing this full time since july and I’m feeling the pain! Writing a book and blogging 5 days a week is extreme sports! life on the edge! i managed to find a couple of people to do consistent guest posts and am making them a full time part of the ministry. My goal is to get someone for everyday but one so that all I need to worry about is that day! Not an easy feat! I pray that the Lord will fill you up in this time of extended Sabbath Rest and you will return to us ready to guide us again to the well! Have a blessed Christmas!

  123. I don’t comment here very often, but I have to say good for you! Enjoy this break and do what YOU need to do for you & your family.

  124. “Come away by yourselves to a lonely place, and rest for a while.”
    You have come to that time. Jesus sees all your hard work and has commanded you to take a break. Praise God you have the ears to listen.
    May you and your family have a blessed Advent season.

  125. Nicole Patteson says:

    Just being a wife and mom is full time work. I’ve cut my hours back at work although financially it’s bad, mentally it’s good. I’ve been praying God will provide something I can do at home in addition to supplement. Not to mention all the other “stuff” I do. Sometimes we have to say no to good things. You can only minister out of your overflow. Even Jesus pulled back and went to spend time alone with His Father. Blessings to you!

  126. Judy Teague says:

    Courtney:

    You are a wise woman. Nothing flows from an empty well. Enjoy your time off from blogging and with your Lord and with your family. May you be refreshed and renewed in His grace, love and peace.

    Blessings to you and a very Merry Christmas,

    Judy

  127. I will miss your posts they always bless and challenge me but I look forward to seeing what God has in store for you!

  128. Annette Billups says:

    I’m going to MISS you!! BUT, this break will be so good for you! We don’t want a CrAzY Courtney! ;-) I’ll look forward to your posts in January. Enjoy this time with your family!! God bless you!!

  129. Cheryl Willis says:

    Rest in the Lord and He will renew your strength and he will bring you back to blogging with a new vision to share with all of us who enjoy it so much! Enjoy your season of “no”! I look forward to hearing from you in 2013.

    Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

  130. Courtney, I respect and appreciate your decision. Your first ministry is to your family and you cannot wear yourself out too much to minister at home. As a fellow blogger, I too, take a break in mid-December. I think with the busyness of the season and the memories that need to be made at home, it is so important. Blessings to you!

  131. Such a great example! So proud of you for making this decision to focus on your most important ministry…your family! Thank YOU!

  132. The main thing is that you are putting your family and God first. That is the most important part. I do have to say, though, that I am a bit saddened by this news. You have been such an encouragement and an inspiration to me every since I stumbled upon your blog about 6 months ago. I was struggling and your amazing words brought back the joy for me. But this break that you are taking is another way that you are a leader….showing the right thing to do to keep your relationship with God and the one with your family front and center. Thank you.

  133. Rest well!! Merry Christmas!

  134. Dear Courtney, may God richly bless you during this time of communion with Him!

  135. We will be here if/when you decide to come back. You are a wise woman to put your family first. I don’t know how you did it anyway. Hey, who was the author you could have been going to see at her home? If it was Ann Voskamp I would LOVE to take your place. :):):) Have a super Merry Christmas.

  136. Good for you! Peace to you and God bless!

  137. What a wise decision! I pray that your break will be a beautiful time of rest and fellowship with your family and the Lord!

  138. Courtney,

    You are a blessing to so many. Through that blessing you give of yourself over and above. You are so smart to take this time to regroup, renew & refocus on The Cross. I have learned lately that when you are renewed in Christ you can begin to refresh others even more. Blessings to you and your family as you minister to them in the home.

    I look forward to hearing how God works in your life through your blogging break. Praying for you!

    In His Calm,
    Mary

  139. Diana Drakeford says:

    I have only been subscribed to your blogs for a short while, but this blog is my favorite.

    Transparency is key to encouragement. Not only being transparent about our love for Christ, our joy, our answered prayers…you know, all the “positive” stuff, but also about our weaknesses and struggles.

    In transparency are we made known to each other and relationships are formed. It is one thing to receive encouragement from someone’s post or blog that we know OF; it is quite another thing to receive encouragement from someone we feel we KNOW. We feel we can identify with Jesus because He identified with us.

    Too often we let fear of rejection keep our mouths closed and our struggles hidden. Probably because too often we have seen and heard “Christians” judging someone’s weakness, as though they themselves have none, when what they should have been doing is praying for that someone.

    Father, I come before You in the name of Jesus Christ. Thank You for the passion and ministry You’ve given to Courtney. May she accept, in peace with no guilt, that rest is of You too. Refresh her mind, body, and spirit as only You can. Renew the truths in Your Word that she already knows. May she have open eyes, ears, and heart to receive and understand all You are going to show her during this time. Let her physically feel Your arms wrapped around her. I ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen

  140. You are heading down the path of Godly wisdom :-)

  141. Bravo Courtney…bravo.

    Peace and rest to you in this season of pause.

  142. Courtney,
    I am so blessed by all you do through emails, blogs, and Facebook. However I must say I am very proud of your decision to take some down time. I believe it is very important for each of us to know out limits, if this world had its way we would all keep going until we were exhausted. I find it a little amusing that we all to often think we need to keep going and yet if we follow Jesus examples there were times when He took time to rest. We have much to learn from our wonderful Savior. I must admit that I am very excited to hear that you were able to say NO to many things that compete for your time, that is not an easy thing to do in a world filled with YES.
    I pray that you, your family and all those close to you have the most amazing holiday season. May our Father fill you to overflowing during your time of rest and may you see His grace abound each and every day.

    Many blessings,
    Diane

  143. I enjoying reading your thoughts on being a Biblical wife and how to set the tone/mood of your household in everything a woman does. You have inspired me to be a better wife and mother with simple tips that have gone a long way in making my home more peaceful.

  144. Courtney,

    May God bless you and yours this holiday season. Thank you so much for all of your beautiful, instructive, uplifting work so far. You have inspired me in so many ways: to pray more, to study more, to remember to be kind to my husband, to support other christian women around me. You have been a blessing. As other have noted, spiritual retreats are biblically based (and dare I say, even required) for those who pour themselves out in the name of the Spirit. May He fill your cup until it overflows once again.

    Wishing you every blessing,
    Christina

  145. You have to do what is best for you and your family. Will be praying that you get the rest and relaxing that you need.

  146. Good for you, Courtney! I have been reading your blog for almost a year now (not sure if I’ve ever commented before though :P) and it is so encouraging. I hope you and your family have a very merry Christmas and may God renew you for this next season of your life, whatever it brings! God bless!

  147. Have a wonderful rest. May it be rejuvenating for you!

  148. Shari Ellingson says:

    I am so proud of you and the choice you’ve made. God has been dealing with me about saying ‘no’, as well. I have been widowed since Dec. 23, 2012 and still have 2 children at home, ages 12 and almost 17. My income mostly comes from my at-home-business, which keeps me hopping…but, between church, business, homeschooling, family and life itself, I feel I’m coming and going! How does one slow down? In the presence of the King…that’s where we’ll find rejuvenation and strength. Blessings to you as you go through the Christmas Season at the feet of Jesus!

  149. Shari Ellingson says:

    Ooops! Should be Dec. 23, 2011…last year! :-)

  150. What a hard decision this must have been for you but yet empowering to know you are taking a break to strive harder towards your first God given role…seeking God more intimately and being wife and mom. It takes a strong woman to admit she’s weak! Thank you for your ministry as I have gained so much encouragement for especially my marriage. God used your blog many, many times in my life. At least 2-3 times I would be on the verge of leaving my husband and you would post an answer to a reader that “jsut so happened” to have the same issue in her marriage as I did, or you would post a video on just what I needed that day. Thank you for pouring yourself out to all of us so deeply and transparently. I pray you find the direction God has for you and enjoy this special time of rest and regrouping.

  151. God brought Women Living Well into my life a couple of months before I closed a very successful 10 year run as a business owner. As I climbed down one ladder into a life of God first, my family second, His Body & others to reach for Him as well- SIMPLICITY (a lost art that I think make be laregely floating somehwere back in the 50′s? :) was to be a new way of life for us. I saw your blog & was immediately attracted to the idea of how God could use ‘writing’ for Him in this manner… {I have loved your writing, Courtney. I have loved how real, hopen & biblical you are in a world racing the other direction.} For myself I heard whispers of ‘wait’ from my Savior. Parts of me just want to burst out & SHINE so brightly FOR HIM… not a bad desire. Yet the call of making my home a haven (*smile*) & being that Prov 31 woman while my little ones are little… I’m reminded of a wise woman who once said “Women can have it all… just not all at once. Some things will have to wait.” So whether your time of simplicity & waiting is shorter or longer & however it looks at the other side (for I’m CERTAIN the Lord’s got great things in store that only He could design/fathom)> I’m cheering you on & so glad for a woman who will keep choosing Him & be an example for all of us. I’ve watched as this year has been a hilly narrow way for WLW… and it’s beautiful. So beautiful to know Life’s just like that sometimes. Thanks again for adorning the Gospel as you’ve continually chosen to do… He’s smiling, I have no doubt :) & God bless your hubby too!

  152. Good for you, Courtney! You’re an example of really focusing that we could all follow at this time if the year, i inagine! See you in 2013!

  153. KathyMills says:

    Dear Courtney

    I wish you joy and happiness and most of all that you find God’s perfect peace for your life. I hope you get time to sit with some hot chocolate after the kids are in bed and read your comments and see how many people are praying for you. May you “Be still” and hear God’s voice clearly. I too will be praying for you. P.S. thank you for that amazing idea of roasting the turkey in a roaster pan and keeping your oven free. We did it and will never cook a turkey in the oven again. Plus we shared that tip with all the family. Enjoy the beautiful moments of “CHRIST” this holiday season. My prayers are with you dear girl. Blessings…..KathyMills

  154. Courtney;

    I enjoy your website so much. Take the time that God has set aside for you to recharge and refresh yourself, both spiritually and physically. I look forward to seeing and reading your blog in 2013, meanwhile I have a couple of years of archives to catch up with! LOL.

    Be blessed Sis; hope to see you on Facebook sometime.

    Storming Heaven’s gate with prayer!

    Ronnie

  155. Janine Dinkelmann says:

    Dear Courtney, you have bee such a blessing. I pray God’s grace and goodness over you. May His peace be with you in this special time that you are entering in to.
    You Go Girl
    Janine

  156. I have to say that I am selfish because I am very sad that you are taking a break. I have learned so much from your ministry and will be praying for you in your time of rest. I pray that God will grant you wisdom and discernment at this time!

  157. Courtney, I love your blog and find your bible studies inspiring. Enjoy your break (you will be missed!) and if this is what you can accomplish when you are overwhelmed, I can’t wait to see what you can do when you are rested! Very best wishes to you and your family!

  158. Hi Courtney
    even Jesus took rest……….. I will be reading some blogs that you posted in the past on marriage I need to learn how to be a wife & helpmeet to my husband. I need to know how so I will also go back to your You Tube videos & etc………… I wanna say thank you & may God continue to bless you & your family. Looking forward to seeing u in 2013 & on fire for the KING <3

  159. I applaud your decision. Only a very few would be brave enough to do what you’re doing and I see how strong your faith is but what you are giving up for Him! All for the King!!! God bless you!

  160. BRAVO!!!! :)

  161. I’m so happy you are taking time for yourself….but….. :-) I have to say, I really enjoy the blog posts. I have been revived and renewed. My husband has noticed a difference. It all started with the blog about loving the lines in the carpet (week 1 I think). Anyway, I had such an “AHA!!!!” moment as I had been struggling with making our new house (we’ve been in here 6 months) feel like HOME. I’ve come to realize it’s not the THINGS that make it home, it’s me. And I NEED HELP!!! So, enjoy your break, but please come back :-)

  162. Good for you!!! You will be missed, but I’m looking forward to your new posts next year. Have a lovely time with your husband and precious children. God bless you!

  163. Courtney, we’ve never met but I feel you are something of a “pen Pal” :) As a first-time mom and thirty-something woman, I have been blessed by your generous discipleship through your blogs.

    I will be praying for you and your family this Christmas season and am glad that you’ve taken this time for yourself, your family, and for God. If you’ve got too much going on you can’t hear what it is He is trying to tell you (at least that’s been my experience) so, take all the time you need and know that whatever path God sets for you in the future, you HAVE ALREADY blessed countless women with your love for Christ. Merry Christmas!

  164. I am a grandma who works full time and loves spending time wiht her grandchildren. I just love your heart for God and how you encourage us to walk with the King. I also like that you care about how your blog can make a positive difference in other lives. Enjoy your time off and come back refreshed and replenished. You will be missed while you are away.

  165. You will be missed… but have an awesome time catching up with family and refocusing . I will still be reading your old blog posts….. and watching your youtube videos as part of my morning devotions! You def give me some good insight and motivation in my own writings on my blog! I Hope to be as successful as you someday! Just give yourself the time YOU need…. and Pray about it….. be refreshed and do what you feel God is calling you to do! Have a very Merry Christmas!

  166. Courtney, I’m not sure if you had noticed that I’m a Christian blogger from the Philippines. There are just a few fellow Christian bloggers that I visit and link up with and you’re one of them. As I had done with the others, I had also learned some things from you as a blogger – thank you!

    May this blogging sabbatical produce the fruit that you are hoping for. Merry Christmas to you and your beautiful family!

    Rina Peru
    Manila, Philippines

  167. It takes courage to know when to take a necessary retreat especially when your following is so large. It shows that you really care and doing what you love to help people and not just for the numbers. Good Luck to you. God Bless.

  168. I only found this blog recently, but it and GMG has been a HUGE inspiration to me as a teenage Christian girl from a non-believing family. Be blessed in the ‘real world’ lol!

  169. I would love to see you continue to blog on children, homeschooling, being husband’s helpmate, keeping the house…how about once a week instead of 3 times? I was just going thru my e-mails and unsubscribing to people who post too often, but WLW is one I was going to keep. I think WE ALL can do with less posts from people, no matter how good they are. Keep a Wed blog and link-up so we can all find each other, and/or re-post some of your old videos and blogs for the newbies.

    Your taking a break gives us ALL permission to take a break and be on the computer less. Merry Christmas!

  170. I pray for you as you do this & also respect you soooo much for doing this!
    I know that God is encouraging you to do this for you,
    BUT He is also speaking to ME through you doing this!
    You expressed my heart exactly.
    I work full time & often feel like managing that + family is overwhelming.
    I feel like I used to manage it so well & am not doing as well lately!
    I appreciate your example & how you are following God’s will for your sanity & for your family!
    I admire you – through I don’t know you personally!
    Thank you for being so real w/ us!
    Much Love!

  171. Gwen Marion says:

    I too find (found) my self on the burn out wheel, as a pastor’s wife, but I must tell you that the words here in this post have helped my very much. I’m not sure at this point what I will do about myself but I am going to spend some time talking to God, seeking His will and just sitting and listening for Him to speak to me. THANKS so much for what you are doing and have done. Merry Christmas, looking forward to seeing you back in 2013 carrying on for the King.
    Much love to you and your family.

  172. Oh Precious Sister in the Lord, I am praying for you. I must admit, I have been covering you in prayer, but stepped it up recently after the elections for God laid you in my heart. I pray you get the refreshment and peace you need. I pray your family gets YOU and you all enjoy this precious Christmas season without distractions. May you know just how much you are loved and appreciated. God has used you mightily in my life and the lives of MANY.

    You asked what has blessed you the most from your blog? I must say, I truly enjoy the home challenges and the posts that focus our attention as mothers on our priority as mother and wife. You have done an amazing job in leading me to seek my calling as mom and to honor my husband more and I appreciate that.

    I pray God reveals His will for you, your family and your ministry. I will continue to pray for you.

    Take care,
    Misty

  173. Respect your decision and think you are very wise.

    Look forward to reading your book next year!

    Have a lovely Christmas from the NE of Scotland to you and yours from mine :D

  174. ourtney,
    Even though I know that we will all miss you and your insight- I completely understand that once in a while we need to step back and relax, rest and recharge ourselves. God Bless you and your Family and I do look forward to your new insights in 2013 no matter how often they may come out!!!! Merry Christmas and God Bless

  175. Teresa Bowser says:

    It is difficult for those of us who have such energetic passion for serving God in all areas of our lives. We want to everything, but we are only one person. You are making a wise choice. During this time of being still and letting God be God in your life, He will direct you in your priorities and the ministries He would have you to be a part of. God bless you and Merry Christmas!

  176. May the Lord bless you as you rest and recover. I’m sure it was a wise decision.

  177. Courtney, I agree with what all the ladies before me have posted! We will all miss you so much! Your personality, your creativity, your blogs, your insight to how we can better our relationship with Christ, ourselves, our homes, our marriage, and our parenting! You are superwoman girlie, but even God had to rest on the Sabbath, so I think this break has been long overdue! I know you will come back better and stronger than ever to continue what the Lord has willed for you to do. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Love you! From one of Your sisters in Christ!

  178. Have a wonderful Christmas and see you soon!

  179. Hey Dear,
    You’ve made a difference in my life! Rest in His care and have a wonderful holiday season!

    This is important for you to do and it is also a great example, as we are ALL bombarded in this day and age and say ‘yes’ way too often, becoming depleted. It’s good to see someone say “no” — just to see HOW it can be done! ;)

    ~Amber in Oregon.

  180. You are very wise. I commend you for taking some time off, and I pray that God will bless you and strengthen you in the days ahead. As a retired writer, I can empathsize with your need for a hiatus. Thanks for all your wonderful thoughts and encouragement in the past.

  181. Thank you for your hard work. I pray you have rest and your strength be renewed. Thank you for helping me when I needed my strength renewed. Your blog has helped me in a time of drastic change in my home. You are making a wise decision. Even Jesus took breaks when He needed them.

  182. You are a wise woman, Courtney. I am praying the parts that show signs of wear will be restored.

  183. Kelley Howard says:

    Well every woman needs a break!!!! SO please go and rest and spend time with your family. AND I prayerfully hope that you will return soon. Like next year in February! Will your website still be available to view previous posts?

  184. Courtney, hope you have a blessed Christmas and break time. I’ve been reading your blog for years and been blessed by it. Thank you for writing and sharing your wisdom. I just want to share two resources that you may find useful: http://simpleblogging.net/ & http://michaelhyatt.com/027-how-to-say-no-without-feeling-guilty-podcast.html
    Have a Merry Christmas!

  185. You are very gifted, Courtney! God has blessed you with some amazing opportunities.

    You are so wise to take a break. This past January, at a MomLife Retreat, Barbara Rainey shared her testimony about when here children were younger, and how God clearly led her to put away some projects that she was working on (her giftings) and to focus on her children and husband (her calling). Several years later, after her children were grown, she was able to pull those projects back out and God has given her even more opportunities. She even has more to share because of her experience and maturity. It really challenged me to evaluate my life regularly, and to make sure I am not allowing my calling to be neglected.

    You are setting an example for other young women to follow. You are teaching more with your life than you will ever teach any other way! I’m so proud of you for hearing and following God in this! Don’t you believe for a second that God isn’t going to use you. He already has given you a platform. It just may look different for awhile.

    At allume I became very burdened for the number of young moms there were that have such a huge platform, and the amount of time that takes away from their families. so many gifted women…yet gifting never should come before calling.

    This decision you have made will be used greatly, courtney! For God and His glory…and for your future and your kids future!

    consider yourself hugged!

  186. Blessings to you Courtney! May God bless you during your break and may you become centered on Him and His will for you! May you feel refreshed and renewed with His purpose!

    Blessings to you and your family!

  187. Way to go! Your decision to do this is refreshing to those who want more in life, but need to be reminded of the more that comes with less. Praying God blesses your time apart. Enjoy! Rest.

  188. So many of your words have inspired me…as a christian, wife, mother, teacher, friend…this does that most of all. We all have to be aware of what’s important, and our ministry never takes the place over our family. May God bring clarity and peace as you take this break. I love the analogy that we are like sponges-fill us up and we can share the water with everyone around us, but when we did not have time to refill…it leaves everyone else dry. Go to back to the well and refresh yourself-I look forward to hearing what God tells you in January:)

  189. Sometimes we just have to step back and say “no” to some things…and thank God He gives us the wisdom to know when. It’s more important to protect our sanity and our family, and you are doing the right thing. Thank you so much for all that you have contributed and all that you still do for so many women around the world. You are a true blessing. For now, focus on your family and enjoy the rest! We’ll still be here (plus I have a lot of videos and blog posts to catch up on that you’ve posted previously!)

  190. Praying for discernment for you, and His will. You are an amazing blessing to all of us, and we will look forward to your return in 2013.

    Wishing you and your family a very Blessed Christmas and a healthy, happy and Christ-filled New Year 2013.

    Love & Blessings!

  191. Hi Courtney,
    I hope you are having a great family Christmas time. What a beautiful time of year to reflect on Christ, His birth, life and sacrifice. I just got this adorable link to a sweet song with a precious message. I guess it is hitting me especially because so many places I go saying “Merry Christmas” I keep getting the response of “Happy Holidays” I finally asked an employee at a store and they said that they can’t say “Merry Christmas” because it may be offensive. SO here is the link to my new favorite song
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ln01p1M2cH0 I hope you enjoy it too.
    Merry Merry Christmas and thanks for ALL you do to keep our homes and families strong in our Heavenly Father and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Walk with the King!
    Shelly

  192. I only found you a few months ago but you have already made such an incredible impact in my family, marriage, life and journey closer to God! Be sure to take this special time to rest and grow and return if/when you are ready. Merry Christmas!

  193. I hope that your time of regeneration is peaceful and fulfilling. Praying for healing for you and your family. You are an inspiration and a delight. I am so blessed to have found your blog at this juncture in my life. Truly you are a gift to everyone who reads what you offer. I hope that the new year finds you recharged and renewed in faith and energy. May God bless you this merry season!

  194. I miss you Courtney! Your blog is my favorite, and I completely understand why you need a break….and you deserve one! I know that when you come back you will make it even better! Merry Christmas!

  195. KellyK(@RNCCRN9706) says:

    Well, here we are Dec 17th already. My how the time flies! Hope you are enjoying your blog break! I’ve missed your postings but enjoy the ones on Facebook/Twitter!! Still praying for you!

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  196. Dear Courtney,

    I pray that your break has been sweet and fulfilling the desire of your heart to hear from God on how you should proceed in 2013. I want you to know that you have been such an encouragement to me (holding back the tears as I type this…oops, there they flow!). I discovered your site earlier this year and I have grown spiritually as a Child of God, as a wife, and as a mother through your GMG Bible studies and your posts on being a Godly wife and mother. You have been an answer to a prayer that I prayed at the beginning of 2012 when I asked God, during my Daniel Fast with Kristen Feola, to help me grow closer to Him, to be a more Godly wife to my husband, and a more Godly mother to my children. I want to say thank you and God bless you for all the sacrifices and time you have spent in reaching out to me through Women Living Well and Good Morning Girls. I pray that God would give you clarity of mind, peace which surpasses all understanding, and that you would clearly hear Him speak to your heart, “This is the way, walk in it.”

    Thanking God for you,
    Laurie

  197. I am SOOO thankful for you Courtney…. as i went to the computer early in the a.m. , I was ALWAYS so excited to see if you had a new post…. I DO MISS HEARING FROM YOU MORE THAN YOU COULD KNOW… but as so many have said, we are so thankful for this time you have taken to refresh and spend with those in your care…. soooo looking forward to hearing from you in 2013.. Blessing to you and yours xoxox :)

  198. Melanie Handy says:

    We all hope that you gain rest. Everyone deserves some vacation time.

  199. Dear Sister in Christ,

    I pray your time away from us has been blessed from our Father. I’ve missed reading your posts, the wisdom you freely give, the love that flows from your fingers to your blog. Hope your 2013 brings you ever closer to Him who saves, and loves.

    Happy New Year, Courtney.

    Love, Peggy

  200. Keriann Fryer says:

    Courtney, Please never stop teaching on marriage and Biblical submission with the joy, passion, and truth that you do. It has been a balm to our home.

    Thank you.
    Keriann

  201. Kate Wilson says:

    Good for you for taking a break, Courtney! Sometimes we need the rest. And you’re an inspiration to us all, with your priorities in correct line.

    All your posts are great, but the ones that effect me the most are all about marriage and being a good wife. Although we’ve never met, you’ve become sort of a mentor for me. I didn’t grow up seeing what a healthy Christian marriage looks like, and I had no one to teach me how to be a good wife–but I’ve learned so much about service to my husband and family through your posts and video clips. Thank you for all you do!

    In Him,
    Kate Wilson

  202. Have a nice break away.

I love hearing what is on your heart.

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