There is an old wood sign that hangs outside our laundry room door. It reads: HOME. When things went sideways in my marriage, I used to stand under that sign, folding laundry, watching the kids play in the yard, and dig in my heels.
I am one stubborn woman, but this time my stubbornness was the good kind. The kind that said, I am not leaving my post. I am going to stand right here under the HOME sign — and keep watch. I will not be moved.
I know how to fight for what you want when it seems like it’s falling through your hands. To dig in your heels. To believe when you aren’t sure anyone else does.
They say most people give up right before the breakthrough. I don’t want that for you.
So here are three tactics to battle for what you want, when what you want is good — because everything good is worth fighting for.
1. Stand firm. Do not be moved. If you know in the core of your heart that this is holy matrimony — where you stay faithful through richer or poorer, sickness or health, the good, the bad and the ugly — then you don’t move from that position. Same goes for your call to motherhood or ministry or whatever matters most to you.
Make sure it’s what God wants for you, pick it, and then pick it again when it gets hard. If you have to pick it every day or every second, then do it. But don’t opt out because it is too trying — for in the trials, we are changed. Man your post. Stand firm.
There’s this thing God says to us — even if you are faithless, I will be faithful. Do that.
2. Yield. I had a mentor tell me once, “Jen, in ministry, it’s a ‘Green Light Go,’ until it’s a ‘Red.’ Always stay submitted to the Red.” A few years ago, for the first time, our ministry light went from bright, beautiful green to blinking yellow, then to a big, bold, STOP-NOW RED. Yielding, then stopping for as long as God said, “Stop,” has been the key.
When I stopped to what I thought I wanted, I got what I really wanted: a better marriage, a better family life.
I know most women don’t like to “submit,” but submission means yielding. Yield first to God. Let Him steer. He could be slowing you down to prevent a crash that you don’t see coming. In the tangle of a marriage in crisis, let go. Even when you think your husband is wrong, yield.
Give him the trust that says: I signed up to follow you, and I’m going to follow you whether we fall or not. If we fall, we fall together, and we’ll be there to lift each other up. Yield.
3. Pray and Fast.
When you need breakthrough, and boy do I know what it’s like to need breakthrough — pray and fast. It’s what they did in the old days and it still works today. When I was messed up and sick as a dog from my modeling days, I took five days to stay in a little mountain hostel, fasted, prayed, and was delivered from my eating disorder, the wild mess of my mind, and my past. I broke through to a new chapter — and it wasn’t about my body. It was about my heart, soul, and future.
Likewise, I have fasted for my marriage. I have fasted to rid myself from worry and fear, and for the people I love.
When you need breakthrough … Break. Through. Did you know that “to fast” means to “cup your hand over your mouth”? It means to be quiet. To yield. To stay the course, trust, and believe. You’ll be amazed at how a new day dawns.
My friend, you are a fighter. Fight for what you want, when what you want is good.
Don’t move from your post.
Dig in your heels.
Breakthrough is coming.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
At the age of 18, I was recovering from an eating disorder, cutting, and suicide when I read Jennifer Strickland’s book Girl Perfect and it changed my life. At the age of 33, as I travel the world reaching youth for the gospel, this is the only book I recommend to girls who are struggling. The Lord has truly anointed Jennifer’s words through her story, not only to address the struggles of today’s generation of girls, but also to walk them through the healing necessary for victory.
Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.
Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA
“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”
Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church
“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”
Allie Marie Smith
Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made
One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”