Susan Brown was nominated by Wendy Wallace (already shared on our platform and also a wonderful story). She’s a wife, Mom of 2 kids and several others animals. After getting to know her and her story, what stands out to me is that she gives God all the glory.
Here is a snippet with her story that I’m sharing based off of our conversation from the video below: Though growing up in a Christian home and accepting Jesus at an early age, Susan never felt good about herself. She was taught legalism and coupled with being bullied, she felt unworthy and confused. One thing though, is that she really enjoyed school. She finally got her chance to leave the bullying she experienced in her small town and create a new persona in college where she received a swimming scholarship. In college, she left little time for God as she was making her new mark in the party and drinking scene.
Even though she enjoyed school, after 4 1/2 years of college, she and a friend left to live in a gulf coast town with no degree (kept switching majors). There, she continued in the party scene, focusing on herself and became rebellious by not talking to her parents much. After different friends moving in and moving out from her apartment, she finally got to a place when she was all alone. She couldn’t continue paying the bills and ended up getting kicked out. It was very clear at this point that she knew that she could reach back out to her parents and they would accept her and invite her back home, but she she felt like she needed to own her choices and deal with the things she created. So, at 23 or 24, she made the decision to live in her Camaro; she was officially homeless!
Though it was one of the scariest times in her life, she wouldn’t change it for the world. She states, “when so much is stripped away and you have no where to go but look up, it’s a beautiful thing.” She shares how it was one of the most intimate times she had with God. Her deep, deep, deep self-hatred and self loathing felt like it was unredeemable, but she says that’s a lie from the pit of Hell! During this time, she quit cold turkey all those things that were making her feel terrible: working at a bar, friends that weren’t good role models and the party scene. She completely cut ties with the old path and got a new job; 3 actually! She decided that she needed to face the consequences from all her actions.
Click on the video below or go to a minute marker that interests you!
Minute Markers for your convenience- click on the gearbox after you hit Play (to the left of the words “YouTube) and then click subtitles if you’d like to read along
0:00 Intro to Susan- author, The365family.com, mother, wife, business owner
2:00 Susan shares about her family, dog, gecko and guinea pig, business, writing
2:55 Started a blog because she realized she wasn’t the only one/shares about her blog The365family.com
4:10 Thank-you Wendy Wallace for nominating Susan! Check Your Game info
5:50 Susan makes up the word, “Check Your Gamers”/Fix our eyes on the Lord
6:24 God shares about Heaven/people will be surprised when they see her because of her changes
7:08 “My story is a long winded one!”/God isn’t a God of contradictions/opposites
8:49 acronym D E A T H (Doorway to Eternity of All Things Him)
10:46 acronym S U F F E R I N G (Softening Us For Further Eternal Reaching In Needing God)
11:43 There is no amount of darkness that God can’t shatter
11:55 Shares about storytelling/encourages others to share
12:56 “SUSAN!” men and women in Heaven
13:47 Susan begins her story, growing up in a little town of Mississippi (Fred’s and a Kroger only)
bullied in school, acne, bushy hair, happy kid, loved people, her dog was her best friend
15:30 We have to keep CHEERING FOR EACH OTHER
16:31 Susan talks about accepting Jesus at an earlier age and going to Church/legalism at home
18:20 Was angry when she got to college/was on the collegiate swim team (scholarship)
18:55 She began to reinvent herself- became the partier, not going to Church to try to fit in
19:29 Dropped out of college after 4 1/2 years, kept up the partying and rebellious way, cut my parents out of my life and God
20:05 Paying the bills on my own, had to leave, moved into my car (Camaro) instead of going back to the small town
21:39 I had a decision to make at 23, go back home or keep living in my car and own my crap, fix what I had done wrong
22:49 Made the decision to move into my car- very scary time/I wouldn’t change it for the world (Most Intimate Time with God)
22:55 Don’t believe the lie of Satan/God comes into the darkness where you are to chase you no matter what
24:45 Quit the partying lifestyle, left the job, stopped the whole lifestyle
25:58 You have to face your consequences based off of your action/Needed to “check my game”
26:26 Proudest moments of my life- signing a lease in low income housing/most precious times with God/a huge Check Your Game moment
27:58 Parents/process of her changing and mending some of her choices she’s made/the Holy Spirit and God helping her
29:20 God was her biggest cheerleader/God was more tangible and real than anything else
29:39 Gary shares about chasing after temporary things and asks, “where was your Peace/Contentment during the party scene?” Answer- in the negatives!
31:40 God is the answer for Peace
32:40 Sharing about gratitude and how Christians are even confused about it
33:29 Susan says she can’t wait to meet Bruce Pulver- acronyms
33:44 Another acronym to share (Gratitude) as she was still living in her car- 1 pants and 4 shirts, eat one meal a day
34:30 Story of eating her sandwich on the beach watching people walking (most beautiful thing) was excited to be able to tell her story one day, the Holy Spirit opened her eyes and pointing to God. Everything points to God. Gratitude started to mean something to her. Gratitude (God Redeems And Then Inserts True Unnatural Defiant Elation)
37:40 Gary asks Susan about her parents, Susan’s Mom was going through cancer and how her relationship with her parents was redeemed, mom became paralyzed in a car accident at 58 until 10 more years, became full time caregiver, moved in with parents
41:20 SMILING- everything feels lighter. Acronym for SMILE- Seeing More In Light of Eternity
42:45-43:55 Parents struggling with their wayward kids/Susan shares how she takes FULL responsibility!
44:14 Gary shares about being off on the path for awhile too/talking about his parents
45:00 Gary talks about kids having to be “homeless” in a car sometimes in order to open up their eyes and change
45:40 Gary asks what advice would Susan would give. Try to fight at all costs to be present for the one next thing and then the next thing. Remember this is not your forever (when you’re in a bad place). The valley’s are not your forever! You are walking through!
51 Everyone is seeking something. If you don’t know the Lord check this out.
51:27 IMPORTANT QUESTION SUSAN ASKS- have you ever made a mistake in your life? Are you willing to be wrong about eternity?
53:15 Sharing a part of her story, stopped going to Church, so many miscarriages, etc. Her Mom gives her advice.
54:05 ANGER and God and how He can turn it around.
55:42 Susan’s last words and how to connect with her/shares about her new calling
Susan has Nominated (N) or Introduced (I) the following, plus (S- person shared their story): COMING SOON!
1. Be willing to be wrong. And once you are willing, then take it a step further and start to expect it and use it as an opportunity to learn and grow! We are all wrong about things all the time that we have no idea we are wrong about. When we discover we are wrong, it can either embarrass us if we made a big stink about it, or it can be a time to learn, grow, and even excitement about it, if we approached it with humility and understanding.
My husband and I have a saying that we love to say in our house, "Consider that you may be wrong." It keeps us humble and reminds us we are just human and there is another side of the story and maybe we don't even know the full story. Keeps us from jumping to conclusions. Doesn't mean we do it perfectly every time obviously, but we love to consider that we may be wrong. Keeps us aware and attentive as well as hopefully humble.
2. So much of what can be healed in our world is by simply being kind.
Sprinkle Kindness Everywhere.
Chase Jesus at all costs.
Listen really well and look for ways to sneakily serve others without them ever knowing.
Make sure (and this is an ongoing throughout the day thing for most of us) Jesus is the 1st thing....otherwise all the other things are exponentially harder, more difficult, and more frustrating.
3. BREATHE! Just be grateful that YOU ARE HERE AND ALIVE AT THIS VERY MOMENT! Life is a crazy short fleeting temporary gift and we want to be found spending it being joyful, grateful, serving, and loving, not miserable and complaining.
4. Most Importantly, no matter what you think you know or what you do in life or who you help, remember that NONE OF IT AMOUNTS TO ANYTHING IF WE HAVE NOT LOVE. (1 CORINTHIANS 13:1-3)
So, now we need to know that if nothing we do matters wtihout love, what is love? Well, thankfully The Bible tells us that too.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 DESCRIBES what love looks like.
1 John 4:8B TELLS US WHAT LOVE IS! "GOD IS LOVE".
So to sum up, no matter what you do, or accomplish or how much you help, if you have not Love, which is God, we have nothing.
I Just love it that He gives us all the answers in His unfailing word!
HOW EXCITING IS THAT? HE TELLS US WHAT LOVE IS! IT IS GOD!! IT IS HIM!
ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS BELIEVE IN HIM AND WE WILL BE SAVED. (JOHN 3:16)
If we have nothing without God, then with Him we have everything.
Chase what matters. Chase the one thing that matters. God IS Love! He is what matters.Period. End of story!
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THE 365 FAMILY
Our entire Mission is to comfort others with the comfort we ourselves received from God (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) with real tangible solutions.
We help the overwhelmed, and those longing for more simplify life and become joy seekers along the way. We use our years of extensive knowledge from suffering and caregiving and simplify life's processes way down and share those with our audience so that they can get on with the business of living their beautiful one of a kind life. We offer these in the forms of articles, books, binders, printables, infographics, and even physical merchandise. In short, we help them leave the Overwhelm behind and replace that with who they truly are...AN OVERCOMER.
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Our customer is one who has been through trial after trial and suffering, dark waters, ones that sometimes may seem to pile on top of one another, and the grief is on the verge of consuming them. This can look like anxiety, depression, loss, caregivers, miscarriages, homelessness, marriage problems, and abandonment. They know they aren't willing to give up, but believe they are the anomaly...the one no one sees or understands. They need a friend to come alongside of them and just show them the simplest of tasks bc they simply don't have it in them to do "all the things." They want a simpler, more organized and peace filled life. It is usually someone who lives a life of serving others and tends to forget about themselves until there's not much left. We love helping them get back to Life...SIMPLIFIED.
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