Bravely Stepping into God’s New {A Guest Post}

To welcome the New Year, I am thrilled to introduce you to Kristi Woods. Kristi is a friend, an encourager, and a sister in Christ. The first time I read her writing, I found myself nodding and thinking, “Me too. Yes, me too.” She has the gift of making you feel right at home, and I know you will be inspired by her beautiful heart today.

Woods Family_0154

Kristi Woods is a speaker and author who loves to see women dive deeper into the “more” the Lord has in store for them versus simply sitting in Sunday pews. She journeys alongside, encouraging and equipping them to live spiritually beyond surface-level.

Frequent posts on her blog, Bearing Branch, daily prayers on Facebook, and her book, The Other Side of the Fence build up and encourage women through the written word.

Her spoken messages invigorate women to draw closer to their Father, know who they are in His eyes, love themselves just as God has made them, and use that knowledge to live day to day life in in-depth ways.

She and her handsome, retired Navy man reside in Oklahoma with their two eager teenagers, one growing tween, two ambitious dogs, and one very relaxed cat.

Kristi would love to connect with you at Bearing Branch,, Facebook, Twitter, or on Pinterest.

New Thing for fearfully made mom

See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland. IS 43:19 NIV

Her words were simple, but they brought a halt to the moment. It was as if God had sounded the spiritual gong.


My attention was gathered.

“Kristi, have you even considered it?” she asked, a concerned-for-my-soul look to her face.

Had I even considered it?

Well, no.

No, I hadn’t considered it, and I hadn’t prayed about it either. Ouch! It didn’t make logical sense, my husband going back into the Navy, so no was an easy answer.

An absent husband? No thank you.

Pseudo-single parenting during underway times? No way!

Cutting our pay nearly in half? Nada.

High divorce rates? No, I certainly didn’t want to be surrounded by that world.

It wasn’t what I wanted, and going back into the Navy simply didn’t make sense.

But the words my pastor’s wife spoke flew in the face of every seemingly logical thought I had. They were the neon light, flashing a warning to consider God’s will. That maybe, just maybe, He had something new in store.

I had packaged my life in neatly wrapped logical decisions, living it as I knew best. But it was about to get better with God’s new way.

When God is the center of our decisions, the center of our focus, life is right. When we step out, bravely into “new” with the strength of the Lord, our choices are the best they could ever be…because they are God-honoring and birthed with His strength.

Shortly after that conversation, I set my life plans at the throne of God.

Oh Lord, what do You want?

It was a brave move, in hindsight, but losing control, not being able to envision the steps just two feet ahead, was scary at the time. It didn’t make logical sense, but honoring both God and my husband made perfect sense. I clung to that truth. Believe me, I had a hanging from the edge, white-knuckled, shaking-in-my-boots grip.

Just as my Father asked Joshua to march seven times and Jesus to die on the cross, the plan wasn’t logical. But those brave, losing-control steps that morphed into new? They brought joy. They brought beautiful.

Beautiful came at every duty station as the Lord drew me near.

My sweet daughter, do you hear My voice?

Yes, Lord, I hear You.

At every duty station, through various leaders, mentors, and congregational strengths, His voice became clearer. His Word danced to life, prayer became communion, and His healing found permission to touch my life. Outreach became real, and strengthening friendships that continue to this day were forged because of the Lord.

Those brave steps of new? They became a life fulfilled with and honoring God. Had I continued to turn my head in the name of “logical”, I would have simply been outside the will of God. It’s a dangerous place to be, in the shoes of one who is afraid to bravely step out.

Oh, the things we miss, the honor that is refused, the relationship we squelch in the name of fear. But it doesn’t have to end that way. Fear’s call can be muffled by one simple, brave step toward God’s new.

Is the Lord speaking to you about stepping out bravely?

Maybe it doesn’t make sense, this path of new. Maybe you’ve always done it “that” way and there’s no need for change. Perhaps family and friends won’t understand the decision, or maybe you’re simply quite comfortable where you sit.

May I encourage you?

It’s worth the trust.

It’s worth considering the Lord and going where He leads.

It may be a new thing, a scary new thing, but when the Lord makes a way, joy and beauty will be found.

Were the years in the Navy easy? Not always. But, did I grow closer to my Lord? Yes.

Did He always provide? Absolutely! He always made a way and it was beyond what was ever imaginable.

I wouldn’t change that decision to step out bravely for anything in the world. I am convinced that today my Lord has more of my heart, my thoughts, my decisions, and my words because of that decision to step out bravely.

It’s a new year. Those new things the Lord has in store for you? It might be His call to know more of Him, for the Lord to have more of your heart. Will you pray to ensure you hear, my friend? Then step bravely. Step bravely into God’s beautiful new.

Father God,
I hand my life to You because I want to know You more. Glory, I desire to bring You glory with my decisions, Lord. Is there a new area where You are calling me to step bravely, an area where You will make my way? Show me that next step, and I will follow You.
In Jesus’ name,


*Linking up with Kelly Balarie & Friends, Meredith Bernard,ย Holley Gerthย and Equipping Godly Women to encourage and be encouraged. Come join us.

Equipping Godly Women

25 thoughts on “Bravely Stepping into God’s New {A Guest Post}

  1. I’m ready to walk bravely where God calls me, but I have to be honest and say that I am unsure of where that is at the moment. Thank you for your beautiful words!


  2. Kristi, what a beautiful reminder that God is faithful when we step out where He calls us. It didn’t make sense to Peter as he stepped out into the water, but Jesus grabbed his hand and kept him in His care, just like He did you : )


  3. Thank you, Kristi, for hearing the pulse of God’s heart. And for the encouragement to ask God what His will for my life is. Your prayer was the cry of my heart.


  4. Thank you, Kristi, for this inspiring post to step out bravely into God’s new and let “His healing found (find) permission to touch my life.” My heart said “Amen!” to the prayer at the end. (I’m glad I am your neighbor at Holley’s. Reading this post strengthened my heart.)

    Kristi and Abby, may you both be richly blessed in 2015!


  5. I love this, Kristi. Especially “His voice became clearer. His Word danced to life, prayer became communion.” Great encouragement to seek and bravely step “into God’s beautiful new.” Wondering what that is for me right now!


  6. What a beautiful, inspiring message, Kristi! God used that very verse (Isaiah 43:19) t0 call my husband and I into church-planting in the MidEast. (Talk about scarey! We were comfortable in the church where we’d been 7 years!) Now 3 years later, He’s calling me to juggle church planting AND writing. Your post encourages me. Thanks for featuring this, Abby!


    • Betsy,
      Yes, yes, yes! You know what it’s like to step out. I LOVE that God used IS 43:19 too.

      Your writing is beautiful. It appears, from this end, as though your juggling is successfully God. ๐Ÿ™‚ We’ll continue to encourage one another in this race, OK? Be blessed, my friend.


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