Episode 21- Summer Send-Off

Episode 21: A Summer Send-Off

Co- Hosts: Katelyn Nix + Ebie Hepworth

Summary:

In this short episode we review how the first season of Fearless Talk went and the hopes our team has as we step into summer. Fearless Talk will be taking the summer off to focus on time with family, rest, and pray into the next season of Fearless Talk that will resume in the fall. We unfold how to be kind to our bodies as we approach summer, how to be generous with our resources, time, and money, and how this summer we hope to be the best listeners we have ever been.

Fearless Co. is hosting our first gathering in Boise, ID on June 29th from 9-3 and we hope you can make it. This small and intimate gathering will be focusing on intimacy and prayer. It is a time to gather around the table, share a meal together, and press into the heart of the Father as we all pursue a free and whole life. We hope you can join us!

Episode 20- A Praying Mother

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Episode 20: A Praying Mother

Co- Hosts: Pam Buller

Summary:

This is the third episode of ‘Fearless Mama’ series. Pam Buller, a mother of 9, has redefined the role of mother with her undying love for her children. After she and her husband moved to Liberia, Africa to pursue their family like never before, Pam discovered a new responsibility in her motherhood.

Motherhood is a sacrifice, responsibility, and an honor spent on your eyes in total surrender to God. And while life’s circumstances might feel overwhelming, we have the opportunity to mother with Holy Spirit has our closest partner. As mothers, the sacrifice requires so much of our strength and energy- strength and energy that sometimes we don’t believe we have. But with the Holy Spirit, we can cling to what he know to be ours; we can cling to peace, strategy, joy, hope, and comfort.

There is so much pressure to be the perfect mother, but so much of that is a distraction. Really, we just have to obey Jesus. Our obedience is the one ingredient that we can offer Jesus in our lifetime; we will fail- day after day- but when we obey Jesus, we are choosing to partner with Heaven rather than partner with our ways.

Obedience is what allows to step into our purpose. Without obedience, we live the life we believe we deserve. But when we are obedient, and we submit to Jesus- that is where we see miracles happen.

Episode 19 - Brave Communication in Friendship

Co-Host: Ally Smith

Summary

Friendship with a mindset of wholeness.

Lasting friendships require a willingness to go deeper- even when it’s not fun. Inviting realness and authenticity into your friendship allows deep roots to grow.

The main distinction between a “polite friendship” and a “deep friendship” is competition. If you are truly in someone’s corner, and you are showing up to the friendship with a desire to see Kingdom come in that person and in that friendship, your friendship will have lasting roots of authenticity and respect. And unless you have surrendered every bit of personal gain to God, the competition will try to find a way into your friendship. Just a little spark of competition can poison an entire friendship.

At any point, you could choose to be jealous and competitive within a friendship. Or, you could choose to see the gold in your friend the same way God sees it. When you see your friendship as beloved, you are cultivating freedom, depth, and a relationship unlike anything else in this world. Furthermore, God will bless you with the gift of truly seeing his goodness unfold in something and someone so close to you.

Authentic friendship is worthy of healthy and hard conversations. Pursuing clarity- especially when it’s hard and especially when it sucks- is one of the biggest responsibilities in authentic friendship. The world may tell you that your friendship will end if a confrontation happens, but if you truly invite God into disconnect and ask that he would cultivate trust and honor in your friendship, confrontation can make the friendship stronger than before.

It is so important to honor your friends. Many times, it can be difficult for a single girl to have a genuine friendship with a single guy- and vice versa. The way to maintain a healthy friendship without crossing boundaries is to simply honor that person for who they are. Don’t let your emotions or your mind get ahead of you- don’t allow yourself to fantasize about them- don’t make them apart of a false narrative. That is not honor- that is manipulation.  

If you develop feelings for a friend, it’s so important to be brave and share how you feel. And if the feelings are not reciprocated, know that the rejection is an invitation to wholeness rather than emptiness. You can ask God to show you more of yourself through rejection and you can also walk in empowerment knowing that you were brave and pursued clarity with honor.


Episode 18- Waiting Well

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Co-Host: Shelley Jones

Summary:

Singleness is not a disease, it’s an invitation. There are social stigmas and pressures for women to get married at a certain age, and if you don’t, you’ll be outcasted. That is a lie and nothing more. You are not less than. You are not disease-ridden. You are not unable to do God’s will. God will break down those lies if you press into His character.

You have to press into the invitation of God’s character to the point where it is accessing the walls and the fears of your heart. Let the Holy Spirit come in and heal those areas. Watch as pure hope begins to manifest in the areas previously occupied by hopelessness. And waiting doesn’t mean sitting back and twiddling your thumbs; waiting doesn’t mean resentfully sitting back and letting bitterness grow as time passes by; waiting for means pursuing Jesus and His heart for you.

Many times, when we are in a season of waiting, people will attempt to inspire and encourage us with optimism. They’ll say things like “It’ll happen!” Or “God told me you’d be married soon.” And when seasons of opportunity come and go without a hope fulfilled, it can leave you feeling more hopeless than before.

As someone receiving that well-intended optimism, it’s important to guard your heart so that you don’t grow bitter with reality if the season passes without the outcome you desired.

How can you combat hope deferred? You combat hope deferred with Hope. And who is Hope? Hope is Jesus. Don’t give up hope. It’s the most simple but most difficult thing to do during seasons of waiting. Hope forces you to say “God, You’re able. I put my trust in You.”

Practically, that looks like surrounding yourself with a community who will speak life into you and your purpose and learning the character of God. Reading The Gospels allows us to learn the character of Jesus; Jesus introduces us to the heart of The Father; The Father introduces us to His Spirit. And it’s in that place of identity that He reveals your most sincere worth.

When you find your emotions and feelings not coinciding with the freedom and hope of glory, you need to check your perspective. Pull back on glorifying your expectations and your limited reality to ask God for His eternal perspective. Without His eternal perspective- and with a tunnel-visioned perspective of your own reality- you are blind to the rest of the picture. Zoom out and let yourself see reality from Heaven.

An eternal perspective says, “You were born for such a time as this- there is no qualifier other than that you were born. You are born, you are alive again in Christ, and you have a purpose that is more than just what you are waiting for.”

Practice Gratitude. If you start to practice gratitude from the smallest to the grandest of things, hopelessness will be eradicated.

A constant temptation during a season of waiting it settling. Settling is a way of self-soothing. But keep your eyes on the eternal perspective. God wants to work the fruit of the spirit into your season of waiting so that when the season of fulfillment comes, His spirit and His way is your first response. Settling looks satisfying in the moment, but it’s not lasting and will hurt more than help.

When you’re in tune with the Holy Spirit, you’ll be able to recognize- and choose- between the settling and the promise. Know yourself and know your worth. If you don’t see yourself as worthy, then you are ignoring the fact that you are His child, that He has a plan for you, and that His plan is better than you could ever ask, dream or imagine- and that He’s the perfecter of life and our faith.

Episode 17- Invitation To A Great Marriage

Co-host: Zac Hepworth

Episode Description:

This episode features the first of many Fearless Co. men, Zac Hepworth. After unpacking Ebie’s perspective of marriage in Episode 16, Zac shared his perspective. You’ll notice very quickly that Zac’s perspective- while different from Ebie’s- required much of the same surrendering to Jesus with a common goal of unity and victory. This episode is full of a rich perspective that proclaims God’s purpose and plans for marriage over the very real temptations of selfishness. Through recognizing one’s humanity and God’s perfect plan for covenant, Zac shares marriage from his perspective.

Episode Summary:

 Marriage is a journey of unity; through rough waters and stillness; moments of transparency and depth and moments of chaos and fear- navigating uncharted waters seems daunting but is fully worth your pursuit.

Marriage is a beautiful and difficult process; you’re welcomed to discover the best version of yourself but you also find yourself up against moments where the worst version of yourself is tempted to come out.

During the discovery parts of marriage- the parts where you realize that you are not all perfect- you may struggle to be around your spouse. Rather than feeling safe, you begin to feel exposed and vulnerable. It’s okay to stumble through that season, as long as you know that you are in it together.

 When it comes to dreams and finding trust with your partner, it will likely require something different from a man than it will a woman. For example, you may be an excited dreamer with wild plans to see Kingdom come. You partner’s encouragement and support of that may look very different from snowballing ideas- it may look like questions and planning and investigating. Make intentional space to their ways of support and dreaming and invite their ways of encouragement in and watch as you both go further together.

 Disagreement within marriage does not mean that your partner is against you. Your partner is their own person- they have opinions and questions and dreams and desires. When there is a disagreement- or there is distance- humble yourself and extend a hand towards unity instead of believing that they are against you.

Marriage is a servant love. It will confront your selfishness and your own desires. And when you extend grace in the way that you need to show grace, there is room for a deep and safe friendship to grow.

 While marriage is a covenant between God, you, and your spouse, it can be strengthened by a trusted and honest community. Life will get difficult, but with the protection of a trusted community, you’ll discover that they had the insight to see things coming that you never anticipated- and they will be willing to take the hit so you don’t have to.

It is so beautiful to recognize that your covenant is made up of pillars; pillars of people, pillars of faith, pillars of your unique marriage’s purpose. The pillars of your marriage give you a framework for your purpose and direction and identity.


Episode 16- I Choose You

Co-host: Ebie Hepworth

Episode Summary:

Marriage is different for everyone, so please don’t feel pressured to compare your story and your relationship to someone else’s. Let God write your story and trust Him as He leads you in and towards peace with your relationship.

Many times we have extravagant expectations for our marriage and unless we surrender those expectations to God, we can come up against disappointment, confusion, and manipulation. We should absolutely have faith that God will bless us abundantly within our marriage, but in that, we should also have trust that He will meet our extravagant expectations- not our significant other. By surrendering our relationship to Him, He is in control and His will be done rather than our will.

If you have ever identified as a master manipulator- especially in the context of intimate relationship- then it’s important to fully reset your heart and mind. For Anjel and Ebie, this meant taking an extended time off of dating; for one year, we fully pressed into the awkwardness of being single by making some extreme changes. For us, those changes included deleting every guy’s number in our phones, not being alone with guys, and bringing everything that we would have brought to a guy, to Jesus. It was not always easy- especially at first. But by inviting Jesus into our lives and making Him as real as a person sitting next to us, we were able to fully invest our brokenness, dreams, curiosities, and thoughts into Him.

When you begin to be in an intimate relationship with Jesus, He begins to heal you in the ways that only He can. You’re brought from false hope to fullness and the desire that you once had to control becomes a desire to surrender and listen for His voice of truth.

When marriage encounters adversity, you can put your stock in humility or pride; one will lead to unity and the other will lead to isolation. Being humble means to be submissive to God and being submissive to God means to respect and honor what He is doing through your marriage. Regardless of the circumstances that you might find yourself up again, the day you made your vows, God, too, was in the covenant. He had declared your marriage holy. Choosing humility and submission in your marriage may be as simple as acknowledging that God is the ruler of your marriage. Practically, it can look like letting your husband speak without interrupting him because you simply respect who God is. Through that one act of submission, you’ve died of yourself and have partnered with God’s purpose for your marriage.

Understanding and respecting your holy covenant requires you and your partner to deal with any and all brokenness residing in your hearts. It may feel messy and inconvenient and embarrassing, but God allows healing to happen when you choose unity over the anger in being misunderstood. God will redeem the emotions and bitterness and exhaustion you’re up against.

Being misunderstood is something that must be dealt with by God. It’s finding that real and private holy place with The Lord where you simply ask him to show you the way. Then, you can process with your partner what God is showing you.

When you don’t intimately know God and you don’t let Him intimately know you, you can’t know love, because God is love. It’s impossible to choose love and have it be the true core of your relationship with God. And when you feel like you’re at your wit’s end and you have no strategy or energy or hope to find love again with your partner, simply choose them. Choose them over yourself; choose to let them speak without interrupting them, choose to serve them rather than serving yourself, choose to trust them when you’re scared. Be brave enough to sit in your brokenness with God and you will see that by His grace you are experiencing the breakthrough that you can then lavish onto your partner.

Your mind and your heart is the environment that your actions will flow from. You have to nourish and tend to the garden of your heart if you want your actions to express health and abundance.

When marriage looks different than you imagined, remember that we- as Christians- do not live by our feelings. Bring your discouragement, frustrations, and questions to God and watch as he brings breakthrough.

Culture trains us to have very specific expectations and standards of passion and relationship. Most of the time, relationships are a lot less sexy and passionate than we see them portrayed in culture. This is OKAY and honestly- it’s a good thing that your relationship doesn’t mirror culture- that’s not how we are meant to live. Instead, weigh your relationship by the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Episode 15- Family by Faith

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Episode 15

Title: Family By Faith

Co-host: Ebie Hepworth

Episode Summary:

Ebie Hepworth had always dreamt of having a big family. From the time she was little, she would imagine her life with children from all around the world. When she got married in 2014, Ebie and her husband, Zac, had created an exciting 5-year plan full international travel and missions. But much to their surprise, Ebie got pregnant just six months into their marriage.

The joy of their first pregnancy was overwhelming but quickly took a turn when Ebie began bleeding. Doctors and specialist told her she would be fine, but when Ebie began losing more and more blood, it was clear that something was wrong. After numerous tests, she learned the heartbreaking reality that she was experiencing an ectopic pregnancy. Tragically, Ebie lost her first child at nine weeks.

What followed was a season of immense heartbreak. But it was in that broken and stunning place that Ebie understood the depth of God is close to the brokenhearted.

Having experienced the hope and thrill of starting their family, Zac and Ebie decided to revisit their original 5-year plan when they felt a yearning to began building their family again- this time, through adoption.

While the idea of international adoption seems daunting to some, it was a journey filled with peace for Zac and Ebie. They knew that God had invited them to do something big- something many believed was impossible- but they had said yes. And they were full of faith that God would create a strong family with yes’s.

After 19 long months of payments, grant applications, home studies, and traveling to the other side of the world, Zac and Ebie met the two most perfect children who were waiting to join their family: Esther Birdwell and Asa Kingsman.

 Just as God has promised, he had set the orphans in a home; He had beautifully built a family on faith and obedience.

To see the earliest days of Zac and Ebie and Birdie and Asa, check their video below!

To see the earliest days of Zac and Ebie and Birdie and Asa, check their video below!

Episode 14- Burning Out With Good Intentions

Episode 14

Title: Burning Out With Good Intentions

Co-host: Ebie Hepworth

Episode Summary:

This episode features Anjel’s and Ebie’s experiences in the first three months of launching Fearless Co. From the beginning, the vision of Fearless Co. was big- bigger than us and bigger than anything we thought we could do. But we believed that as long as we were showing up to the occasion, God would give us the grace and strength to operate Fearless Co.. and while we did our best to invite the Holy Spirit into every part of the process, we found ourselves ignoring the very clear signs of burnout. To us, burnout looked like exhaustion, doubt, chaos, resentment, and a lack of creativity. We found ourselves striving more and more, and while we were experiencing supernatural favor and opportunities, other significant priorities in our lives began suffering because of our lack of boundary setting and planning. Don’t get us wrong, it was great and we never once wanted to stop, but it was hard to find balance.

It wasn’t until a trip to The Holy Land that we realized we had been ignoring God’s call to rest and reset for far too long. It was during this time that God revealed three necessary changes that we needed to implement if we wanted to be successful in our lives and his purpose for our lives. We needed to know our priorities and boundaries and we needed to pause and reset anytime God told us to. We realized that while these things were elementary, they would be the very things that success (in life, relationship, and ministry) would hinge on.

We are learning so very much in this process and we can’t wait to see what God will do with Fearless Co.. Knowing that he’s been so good without striving makes us so excited to see what He will do with our best. We are so thankful for the tenderness of Jesus- for how he revealed himself and his desires for our lives to us in the season, and for what he’ll continue to teach us every step of the way. Here’s to all that’s to come!!

 

Episode Notes:

You can tell you are striving when you find yourself putting your first priority in the last place. You will begin to feel the weight of exhaustion more than the freedom of grace. Unless your energy is flowing from a genuine and authentic place in your heart, then you may be making things the wrong priority. 

Know that what you’re doing requires a sense of honor. If you’re doing something without honor, the purpose will be destructive. And when you do something with honor, you need to recognize that whatever you’re doing needs attention to details, systems, expectations, and boundaries. If you are not paying attention to the little things, then the big thing that you’re doing will ultimately become destructive and burnout will come. 

Creating and working from a peaceful place requires having been in a restful place. Give yourself the opportunity to come to Jesus and reset your priorities. That means saying no to the things that you are bitter and resentful towards, saying yes to time with The Holy Spirit, and saying thank you to the places that God redeems in your life.

A reset is not a “water-break.” A reset is a deep and hard look at your priorities. 

The presence of The Lord is water to a burnt out and dry heart.

 The only thing that will truly satisfy a thirsty heart is Jesus. And it has to be a holy and intentional pursuit because unless you’re making clear time for Jesus, life will get in the way and burnout will come.   

Seasons of grit and grind and burnout allow us to re-prioritize Jesus as our focus. God will use those seasons to re-introduce himself to you- but you have to choose Him when the time comes.