Strength of Heart

When you are surrounded by evil and vicious activity, the challenge is to not be overcome by it. Here is a blog post from my archives about what it means to have Strength of Heart in hard times.

Originally posted on 7/18/2017.


I admire people who are willing to think fresh thoughts and do the hard work in search of truth. No easy answers; no simple pithy sayings. As a person of faith, I’m frustrated with easy answers that gloss over pain and refuse to wrestle. I’m not interested in the same answers that the church has been giving for the last 100 years.

Tough-minded people are not easily shaken; they are the ones who navigate adversity and come out stronger on the other side. Welcome to Magnificent Strength of Heart, a place for tough-minded Christians who like to wrestle and question.

I love tough-minded people like Viktor Frankl, Elie Wiesel, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Joni Eareckson-Tada. They are my heroes because they were vulnerable about their pain, did not deny it, minimize it, or exaggerate it, but were raw and real. They wrestled with pain and with God.

Both Viktor Frankl and Elie Wiesel were Holocaust survivors. They recount their suffering in books. I’m moved by their honesty and courage about suffering. They were surrounded by evil but not overcome by it. We need people like that today.

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” Viktor Frankl

Harriet Beecher Stowe considered herself a moderate in the debate around slavery in the 1800s in a heavily polarized political atmosphere. She felt God calling her to write; she wrestled with this for a while before she accepted herself as a writer. She wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin as well as many books and articles but one influenced a nation.

Joni Eareckson-Tada’s story is about a teenager who became a quadriplegic in a swimming accident. I read her book when I was a teenager living in a country at war. She wrestled with God. Joni inspired me during my most difficult years and I want to inspire others.

In this website, I will explore what it means to have strength of heart in three areas: change, adversity and reformation. The Christian church is going through a change and people are freaking out. What does it mean to follow Jesus now? I admire people who are willing to think fresh thoughts and do the hard work in search of truth. No easy answers; no platitudes or no simple pithy sayings.

As a person of faith, I’m frustrated with easy answers that gloss over pain and refuse to wrestle. I’m not interested in the same answers that the church has been giving for the last 100 years. It feels like we are on the verge of a reformation of faith. I don’t know how it will look on the other side but I see it unfolding before me. I want to explore this new thing that God is doing and hold my assumptions lightly. That explains my tag line:

Explore | Question | Wrestle | Repeat

Do you ever get that feeling that something is stirring in your spirit and if you don’t get it out, you will burst? That’s how I feel about this blog. This blog is about developing into a person with Magnificent Strength of Heart. This is the place to think about pain, change and reformation. And like a woman in labor, we lean into the pain so that something beautiful is birthed.

If you long to connect with God in the light of change, this is the place for you. I post blogs on Wednesday or Thursday with an occasional article here and there. Sign up for the blog with WordPress, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you for reading. I’m amazed that my words can be of value to someone else.

©2017 Belinda McDanel


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