Single Appreciation Week-Day 3

//Single Appreciation Week-Day 3

On Monday I introduced you to The Single Woman. Yesterday you met Jaime Jamgochian. And today I’d like you to meet my buddy, Melinda Doolittle!

Many of you may remember Melinda as the 3rd place finisher on American Idol, season 6.

Not only is she, in my opinion, one of the best voices to ever grace the American Idol stage, she is also one of the sweetest, most generous, humble, hilarious, and godliest women I know.

When I thought about my single friends that I could highlight as God-fearing examples of living an abundant life, Melinda was at the top of my list. I put Melinda’s latest single, Never Giving Up on my Single Appreciation Spotify Playlist. Here are the lyrics to the chorus:

“Even if it means my heart keeps breaking
Even if I lose my love’s not changing
I’m never, I’m never giving up
Even if the phone leaves me broken
Even if you tell me it’s hopeless
I’m never, I’m never giving up”

When I asked Melinda to share the story behind this song, I expected her to tell me it was a song all about waiting for unrequited love. What she shared with me caused me to rethink this week of celebrating love in its many forms. Read the blog she wrote about “Never Giving Up” below:

“Recently, I had someone close to me tell me to only talk about my successes so people wouldn’t see me as weak. For a brief second, I listened, but then I remembered the people who have had the biggest influence on my life. Those were the people who weren’t afraid to share all parts of their journey with me…the failures and the successes. Then, I knew that not only was I not alone in whatever I was facing at the time, but there was success on the other side and the lesson would be in the journey. So…here goes…
When I walked into the room to write “Never Giving Up”, I went in planning on writing a really upbeat, sassy song. Then my producer, Tre’ Corley, and awesome songwriter, Jonathan Lee, asked me to name the most difficult obstacle I have faced in the past 7 years. It took me all of three seconds to know what my answer was. Short and simple, it was dealing with all the awful things people said about me as a person after American Idol. There were always really amazing things being said about my singing, but when people had anything bad to say, it was always about my looks and sometimes my personality. People made fun of the fact that I have a short neck and a wider nose. They said I had a bland personality and, if anything, I was putting on an act on TV and I was probably a really rude person. Those words hurt more than anything they could have ever said about my voice. They stuck with me and I believed those words far too long. Even while singing at The White House, Carnegie Hall, The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and so many more amazing places, I still saw myself as less than.
Well, one day, I was speaking to a fellow artist and I was explaining to her what people were saying about me and she told me people were saying the exact same things to her. I was shocked! I consider this woman to be one of the most beautiful and successful human beings I know and people were calling her less than also. That day changed everything for me. It was definitely a process, but I started to see myself as the beautiful woman God created me to be. I started being able to appreciate all of the awesome things I had been able to do as an artist and see the success in that. I came to the conclusion that no matter what people said about me, the true test was in what I believed about myself.
That is what “Never Giving Up” is all about. Even when life takes a different path that I could have ever imagined, I will always be a big dreamer and I won’t give up until it happens. The song focuses on love, but really it’s about life. It’s about knowing myself and what I’m capable of, and not letting anything…the words people say, how hard the journey is, how delayed the winning seems…make me stop the fight. I’m so much stronger than people give me credit for and I refuse to give up on ANYTHING.
So, that’s my journey of “Never Giving Up”. Will you share yours with me? You can either send me a message on here, on my facebook page or on twitter. I want to know your story. You never know, maybe telling it is half the battle.”
Like Melinda, I too am learning to see myself the way God sees me. Melinda’s blog made me think about what I’ll never give up on. There will always be people that have something to say about me. I can choose to listen to that chatter or listen to what my Father has to say. There seems to be a running theme in several of my recent blogs. God is teaching me to Recognize the lie, Replace it with truth, and Repeat the process over and over; the Holy Spirit is showing me how to Break Earthly Boundaries with God’s Boundaries. Yesterday I was on Steven Furtick‘s Elevation Network show. We spoke about hearing God’s voice above all others. It’s the premise of his new book, Crash the Chatterbox. God is showing me to never give up on this battle in my mind! It’s a constant fight, but in the end, I know I’m that I’m an OVERCOMER! Hehehehehe…see what I did there? 😉
So I have 2 free gifts today! Leave a comment below answering Melinda’s question: What is your journey of never giving up? And how are you learning to crash the negative chatterbox and replace those lies with God’s truth? I’ll choose one of you to receive a free download of Melinda’s latest Pop/R&B album, You’re the Reason AND a copy of Steven’s book, Crash the Chatterbox!
2014-02-11T23:09:30+00:00Feb 11th|Blog|54 Comments


  1. kathy February 11, 2014 at 11:27 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is getting past the hurt and talking down of people who dont understand what its like to go through something traumatic. Its taken me 2 years to get where i feel i maybe healing well from the thongs i was put through but i am overcoming day by day one step at a time. To get rid of the negative ive really had to lean on my christian friends and build bonds that are amazingly strong. Its a day to day battle to make sure its Jesus first and everything else second

  2. Amy February 11, 2014 at 11:37 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up involves constantly reminding myself that my past is part of who I am but it does not define me. I’m learning to crash the negative chatterbox by spending time in God’s Word and paying attention to what He says about me so I can think of those truths every time Satan tries to convince me to listen to his lies.

  3. Jessica Hyde February 12, 2014 at 12:01 am - Reply

    My journey of never giving up has been a long one. I am 31 years old. When I was 18 years old I was diagnosed with the late stages of a rare form of head and neck cancer. To God be the glory, I am in remission but it left me with a distorted voice and I have to eat with a feeding tube. It also left me with a potentially fatal side effect where the bone in the back of my head has died off.
    Let’s just say my life is nothing like I dreamed it would be. I had dreams my whole life of being married and being a mom and at age 31 I am still waiting on The Lord for a husband. I am disabled and also when I open my mouth I feel almost like a monster because of my voice. Satan tries to make me feel depressed, discouraged, and overwhelmed. He tries to make me listen to the lies that I don’t fit in anywhere and that I will never get the blessing I have been waiting for. Thank God for the fact that “He that is in us is greater than He that is in the world!” Jesus reminds me that I have been able to share my testimony so many times because of my “messed up voice.” He reminds me that joy is a choice and even when I don’t feel happy, by the power of Christ alone, I can choose joy. He reminds me that He never gives us more than we can handle and that I am in the palm of His hands and He will never let go. He reminds me that I have a place in His plan. Most of all He reminds me that I have already gotten the greatest blessing of all time- a relationship with the Maker of the Universe. He is the greatest love of all times. For these reasons I pray that I will never give up. I pray that I will run the race and finish the course and that in the end I will hear “well done my good and faithful servant” because when it comes down to it that will be all that matters.

  4. Julie February 12, 2014 at 7:20 am - Reply

    For the last 30 years the devil had me believing that I could not serve God in the capacity that I knew He had called me to because of a bad decision that I made one day when I was 12 years old. I was still serving Him. I knew there was more that He wanted from me but just didn’t think I was good enough. Talk about never giving up. There has always been a tiny piece of me that knew if I could just get past the fears, things would be different. Praise God! The chains have been broken and I am on my way!!! It may have taken most of my lifetime to get here but I wouldn’t want to be any where else.

  5. janice yayes February 12, 2014 at 7:24 am - Reply

    So hard. Seeking a man who loves the Lord as I do .so very few out there. It is relationship not religion. I refuse to give up as I believe God has someone for each of us. He just hasn’t introduced me to mine yet. I await the day that I can look next to me in church and know without a doubt that my man is thinking the same thing I am. So many wolves in sheep clothing. As I am now 55 it’s getting more difficult. But I’m not a quitter so I keep searching.

  6. Daisy Rodriguez February 12, 2014 at 7:27 am - Reply

    My journey of never giving up starts when I was only 1 month old. I am 23 years old now. The doctors told my parents I would not make it. That if I do I would be in a wheelchair, not talking. Now I’m doing everything they told my parents I wasn’t going to do.

  7. Stacy February 12, 2014 at 7:34 am - Reply

    When I look at the things other people are overcoming, mine seem insignificant-but that’s part of what I’m overcoming. Feeling less than. My mom chose a life of drugs and men and left me with her ex-motherinlaw. Praise Jesus for placing me somewhere safe with one of His faithful servants. She cared for me as her own. It’s hard to hear past the chatter of your own mind. I was almost 30 years old before I could see that not having my mother raise me as a blessing. The Lord placed so many Godly women in my path that I would have had to be a blind person to miss it lol Well I was blind but NOW I SEE! Some days those thoughts still try to invade my head and break my heart but even if I listen for a few minutes or even hours-a prayer, a song, a scripture are quick to squash it! Praise God for not giving up on us. For forgiving us but mostly for His son and the cross!

  8. Gen Sea February 12, 2014 at 8:02 am - Reply

    My journey on never giving up after a skin disease ravaged my body as a child. I’ve struggled with getting over the hurt and rejection this caused me, by complete strangers and even to people I believed were my friends. I’ve struggled to never give up or give into the lie that Satan has constantly told me, “You will always be alone because no man could ever love someone who looks like you.” But God has been faithful even when I had decided to give up on my life and end it all. He’s been so faithful, putting Godly Christians into my life, to lift me up. I am learning to see myself in his eyes and not compare myself to others. I no longer hide my scars but use them as a testimony of His grace mercy and love. And I’m never giving up on finding that man that God has for me, the one who will love me just the way I am. In the meantime, I’m never giving up on serving and loving the one who has been there with and for me through thick and thin. Be blessed y’all!

  9. Heather February 12, 2014 at 8:36 am - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is continually going. I’m always dealing with negativity within myself. From looks to things of the past. I’ve asked God for forgiveness and to forget and I try to forgive myself but then the negativity flows back in. Whether it’s a sin I gave committed or that someone has done to me. I read my bible daily activities and I love how God can speak to me and show me forgiveness is ok and to let it all go and too not look at myself and to see the world and pray for those that don’t know Him! Because the unsaveds journey is more important. I hope that made sense. 🙂

  10. Vanessa February 12, 2014 at 8:52 am - Reply

    For me, the journey of never giving up is being a single mom to my 14-yr old daughter and guiding her in her relationship with the Lord. Coming from an unhealthy upbringing with constant shaming messages from my mother and no positive affirmations from my father, I am starting to see the ripple affect towards my daughter and how my unhealthy relationship skills are affecting her. Even though I’ve grown a lot in this area over the past 6 or so years, I still have growing to do.
    And God has been good and faithful to bring people into my life to help me see my blind spots and weaknesses and encourage me along the way. As I look to Him each day – asking Him to help me be the best possible mom to my daughter, and at the same time heal me from the inside out and take me deeper into my relationship with Him – I can see His mighty hand at work. It wasn’t until I went through a Bible study called The Hem of His Garment by Healing Hearts Ministries, that I really understood how to move past the lies I believed for so long. That was almost 5 yrs ago. Just recently, Healing Hearts produced another study called First Love (for teen girls), and even though I’m WELL beyond my teenage years, I’m going through this study and I can see that finally I will be free from all of the baggage and bondage I’ve been holding onto for so long.
    Praise the Lord I’m an Overcomer!

  11. Stephanie Bramblett February 12, 2014 at 9:12 am - Reply

    I entered adulthood traumatized and the situations ain’t stopped yet. First month in college and i was molested. I couldn’t sleep and was scared all the time he would find me. at the same time in school, I was told I wouldn’t be able to make it, I needed to quit and Ill never understand. After dropping out, later that summer I was mollested again by a different guy, different location. After that I was In a horrible car wreck that I was blamed for. I then lived with my grandfather who molested me, but who do you tell because it’s family? That went on everytime I would visit there over the past 4 years. This year I started therapy and am finally talking bout it all! I’m tired of holding this all in. I do have PTSD and learning how to deal with it. But through all this, God is the reason I’m still here. Those situations should have been much worse! He has a plan for me and me praying to Him and keeping Him first in my life is what keeps me going. I have now got accepted into a college and am going to do this because I know I can and I’m not going to let anyone tell me differently! I also am staying at my sisters where I am safe and I am round people who love me and are good Christian people. And that’s what I need in my life!

  12. Brandice Nicole Alexander February 12, 2014 at 9:23 am - Reply

    Hi, I’m Brandice Nicole. I am a 34 year old single mom of two, who suffers from Major Depressive Disorder. I have struggled with depression since I was about 9 years old. I was emotionally abused by my older brother all my life, and bullied all throughout school for being fat, for having buck teeth, for living in a green “booger” house. You name it. At 13, I fell into drugs, alcohol and I list my virginity, thus beginning my sex and love addiction that had lasted 20 years. Hundreds of men, STD’s and 3 abortions later, I finally started seeking help. I began Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, and started going to church again. I am happy to say that WITH GOD’S HELP, I am 3 months sober and abstinent. God is really blessing my efforts with His strength and by opening up doors for me. My Christian Children’s Book, The Spunky Little Sheep, is about to go up on to be funded. God has given me an amazingly talented musician to sing with, and I just had an audition at the new church that just opened up by my house for their worship team! The three things that help me fight my depression and falling into old temptations are: Listening to Christian music, reading scripture and scripture based blogs and books, and LOTS OF PRAYER! I am not “out of the woods” yet. I have to continue to put good things in all day every day, so that sin doesn’t ooze out! God bless you, Mandisa! And Melinda! Your stories help more than you know!!! <3

  13. Jordan February 12, 2014 at 9:30 am - Reply

    My Journey of never giving up:
    The enemy has come to steal, kill and destroy but GOD comes to give us life and more abundantly. I’ve been attacked at every level physical, relational, emotional and spiritual BUT I’ve stood still and let God work in all of these situations. In 2011 I was diagnosed with cancer and a miracle happened in my life where it was a simpler cancer to cure rather than the original. After going through treatment my parents separated in 2012, my dad tried to commit suicide and that brings the strain of relationships. Then came the emotional attack of having what I’ve known of love just striped away. While getting my bearings on this and going back to my foundation of Christ’s love and sacrifice. Oh but wait here came the spiritual attack, I’ve been under my Pastors and learning leadership skills and how ministry works and have seen the behind the scenes stuff that hurts. Well it’s a year of promotion at our church and some of my friends have been promoted into a leadership position that I don’t necessarily want but would’ve been willing to fill. It seemed that what I was doing for our church was not being seen but that was the enemy trying to get me down and tell a lie that I’m not valuable. Well here is where I learned/am learning to crash the chatterbox and replace it with Gods truth. First I was real with one of my mentors and friend that I was struggling and she have an outside perspective that I’m valuable and I’m important to the vision and fruit of the church. I’ve started doing a devotional about getting rid of insecurities and walking in who God has created me to be. I’ve also started to listen to more podcast and filling up my tank since I empty it in ministry on Sunday, Wednesdays, and Thursdays and any other day that ministries have an outreach all on top of teaching at a local school in the Special Education class.

  14. Patricia February 12, 2014 at 9:36 am - Reply

    My journey of never giving in is putting aside the many things/people who have wounded in my past. I started a bible study called the Healing Journey. Because of this powerful study, I am learning all of my miss conceptions that I had about God, our enemy and myself. Lies that were instilled in me during my childhood that have festered and through the power of the Holy Spirit are now being healed. Not covered over, but healed. So, I am never giving up on the Power of God which He says he has filled me with. I am an Overcomer in all things–by the Presence and Power of God.

  15. K February 12, 2014 at 9:45 am - Reply

    I have always struggled with listening to the voices of others in defining myself. Being adopted, while I had wonderful, loving parents raise me, and overweight always left me feeling less than everyone else. Being teased as a child and having the question in my soul of who was I, left me always feeling less than. I grew up insecure but was able to let Father Papa heal some of that. But, when my husband left our marriage and children I fell to pieces….everything in me splintered and I was devasted. I couldn’t function and somehow went to autopilot to take care of my kids and the daily things that needed done. I am 52 years old and I feel like I am just now, after 3 years, starting to wake up and feel again. Jesus has led me to lots of places where they are teaching me, as you said Mandisa, to replace the lie with His truth about me and give me hope for a future….that I have a future, insecure-nothing-less than- me has a future that the God of the universe created for me !!! That’s feels like a miracle !!

  16. Tammy February 12, 2014 at 9:59 am - Reply

    I’m a single mother of 2 children. My daughter is grown & lives on her own. My son is a senior in college & will be graduating in May. I’ve always been active & in shape until this past year. I’ll be 50 next week & it seems the closer it gets to it the more depressed I get. I’m really struggling with not being in shape(20 pounds to lose) & still being single. I’ve not even had a steady boyfriend in years. I’ve always put my kids first & I’ll never regret that. I feel like there just isn’t any active Christian men close to my age out there for me & for some reason I can’t even motivate myself anymore to exercise & eat right on a regular basis. Any advise would be awesome. God bless you all!!

    • Brandice Nicole February 12, 2014 at 12:39 pm - Reply

      Try! get yourself excited about the possibility of love! Believe that God wants it for you! That will motivate you to work out! 🙂

  17. […] « Single Appreciation Week-Day 3 […]

  18. Mariah Honig February 12, 2014 at 10:19 am - Reply

    My journey is that I’m always trying to lose weight. Its always been a struggle but I have to keep on keeping on and realize that my body is a temple and although God sees me as beautiful no matter what, I still need to take care of the body he gave me.

  19. Laura February 12, 2014 at 10:30 am - Reply

    Life can be outrageously overwhelming sometimes, but even through the hard, challenging times, I’m learning to lean on God. I can only go on in His strength. It’s by His grace alone that I have the strength to not give up.

  20. Melissa February 12, 2014 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    I’m having a revolution lately!!! GOD is SO AMAZING. I just feel as if I am blossoming under His love and the messages I open myself up to every day. Reading my bible daily, listening to inspiring music (ahem, Mandisa!) 🙂 and walking in love and faith… I feel like I am glowing- and all of this ties into my never giving up. Never giving up on HIM, because He is my strength and my power and my love. I can do all things through Him. I am rejecting sin because of Him. I am re-dedicating myself to purity, because of Him. I can put away the hurt of divorce and rejection, and I can put away the frustration with work, and with financial problems- all because I believe. Because I found a way to live hope and show love and grow in faith- all because He loves me. I can get past anything, and I can never give up! <3

  21. Melissa February 12, 2014 at 12:41 pm - Reply

    My journey of not giving up and being an overcomer started with a 10-year long abusive relationship. My boyfriend and I started dating in high school and everything was fine for the first year or so, except that he was very controlling and manipulative (although being young and “in love” I didn’t see that at the time). Then he started to demonstrate violent or aggressive behavior around the same time that I was pregnant with our first daughter. Over the next 8 years, I stayed with him, trying to support him getting help or medication to help with what seemed to be bi-polar disorder. As the years went on, the behavior would go up and down with days or months of really great times and then days or months of horrifying times. This resulted in constant unemployment for him and also during the last few years of our relationship he began struggling with drug addiction. I struggled with what the right decision was, even wondering if God was punishing us because we had never gotten married, and thinking that decision would make it go away (although we ended up separated before that ever happened). Finally, when our second daughter was 8 months old, I made the difficult decision to leave. Despite the counseling and praying that things would get better, I realized I was harming myself and my children beyond repair and that I couldn’t fix him by staying there. We have now been separated for over 2 years and it is still a daily struggle. He went to rehab and was drug free for about a year, then relapsed. During that time he was acting “correctly” and so I let him back in my life as a friend and we still spent time together as a family. However, around the time that he replased, he begin getting verbally and physically abusive with me again. Now, he is under court-ordered supervised visitation for now and I struggle with helping my kids (now ages 10 & 2) cope with not seeing their dad as often as they used to. I especially struggle with my oldest daughter because she is at an age where she needs a dad in her life. When we first separated, I thought maybe finding a step-father for them that could fill that void would be the best thing, but never could find the courage or motivation to date. Even now I still find that I have no desire to be in a relationship, I think partially out of fear and because my last relationship wore me out and killed all desires of intimacy and trust. I still have hope that one day God will put someone in my life but right now it is not my primary focus at all. I love being able to spend time with my kids every day and, while I still hurt and struggle wanting their dad to get better, because I still want the very best for him, I know that I have to be the strong person in their lives. My oldest daughter told me the other day that she doesn’t want me to marry anyone else, and I told her that right now I didn’t want to anyway because my heart was still healing; she replied by saying her heart had not even started to heal and she didn’t think it ever would. Those words crushed my heart and I pray every day that God will help guide me and put other people in her live as well as role models to help support her and keep her close to Him. She did a project in school a few months ago and used Mandisa’s song “Overcomer” as the music for it. She loves listening to K-LOVE and she does have an amazing faith. I pray that God continues to guide our family on our journey so that none of us ever give up on His plan for us (and that includes their dad as well; despite everything he is still a child of God, I can’t hate him, and I hope that God works through him to overcome his challenge in life too). Our journey is far from over but we are trusting God’s plan and feel His arms around us giving us the strength we need to overcome and live a life for Him! God Bless you Mandisa for all you do as you face struggles in your life and reach out to others who need hope through Christ!

    • Brandice Nicole February 12, 2014 at 1:27 pm - Reply

      Hi Melissa. Your story is touching. You have been so strong!! I will be praying for you and your daughter and your 2yr old for healing. Believe that one day, when you are healed, God will send you a real love. Blessings!

  22. Grace Neel February 12, 2014 at 1:27 pm - Reply

    I’ve struggled with depression for 16 years, and I just recently started truly standing up against it and fighting to break free. I had been pushing forward and resisting the devil, when my 14-year-old cousin, whom I spent a lot of time with, was struck with a deadly case of the flu. Thankfully, not only did she survive, but with God’s help I pushed through too. I never gave up. I kept praying and continue to pray through her miraculous progress. I’m also in the process of getting off my depression meds, relying fully on God to give me joy and give me strength to stop listening to the lies satan throws at me!

  23. Jennie R February 12, 2014 at 1:44 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is the daily struggle of trying to raise my son alone according to Godly principles as well as balance an Army career that has called me away once and is calling me away again. I’m still working on cutting off the negative chatterboxes that tell me I’m not good enough. I’ve always felt I’ve lived in the shadow of the “pretty” people around me. I’ve never felt good enough. I’m trying to work on that bit 35 years of never doing things right takes a while to undo.

  24. Charlotte Hammer February 12, 2014 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is choosing to believe God’s promises in spite of the waves and circumstances. I can find victory in places others might see defeat. Because God does not lie or change his mind.

  25. Kelaiah February 12, 2014 at 2:44 pm - Reply

    My battles to never give up are my health, and believing for healing and continuing on the journey for that, and for my future husband to continue to pray for him and believe he is my promise to come, also to write him letters. Which I’d like to share this one since it is the same topic. I wrote it last year when I was in a rough spot with wanting to give up on the idea of love and meeting him, so instead of getting down I changed my point of view to his and what I’d say to him if he were in the same boat of wanting to give up and this is the letter that come about;

    Dear Future Husband,
    How is it possible to miss someone so much and you haven’t even met? I know it sounds crazy but I’m missing you. I’ve been in a place of doubt and fear of the future. Scared that this desire to meet you and start a life with you is nothing but a dream. I’ve allowed this fear to come in and take over my happiness. I realized what was happening when Jesus gave me this passage for encouragement Deuteronomy 31:6-8 ‘Be strong and courageous, Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or abandon you. Do not fear or be dismayed (lose hope).’ My prayer for you is that you will keep believing in our future and not allow fear to steal your hope, and in times you feel you want to, Jesus will give you this passage to get you back on track as He has for me.
    Your future wife, who misses you…

  26. Jennifer February 12, 2014 at 4:23 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is getting past depression and feeling like there is never going to be a great Christian man to come my way. I know its all in Gods time, not in mine. I guess I’m impatient too!! I’m also trying harder to study Gods Word more but it feels like there is always something standing in my way. Its like I really don’t know where to start reading. Any suggestions? I did buy The Story & I have read about half of it already.
    A big thanks to Mandisa for being such an inspiration to me. It seems we have so much in common. God Bless You!!

    • Lisa February 12, 2014 at 9:59 pm - Reply

      Hi Jennifer yours sounds a lot like mine, waiting on the man of God. And trying to keep believing and holding onto your dream. As far as studying the bible I have had the hardest time of it too, always something coming up, I have tried and tried again, than on January 1, 2014 I decieded I wasn’t going to put it off anymore enough was enough, so I started at Genesis and read Genesis 1 than next day Genesis two and I am happy to say I have done this for 42 days now.

  27. Eunice February 12, 2014 at 4:37 pm - Reply

    I’m never going to give up on making an impact in this world, touching people’s lives and finding my one true love.

  28. Kizzy February 12, 2014 at 4:47 pm - Reply

    Hi Mandisa, another inspiring blog. Thank you for this week! I am not giving up in my faith and on the Lord Jesus as he never gave up on me when I was going through my spiritual low points and doing things I shouldn’t have done. The Lord is faithful! Praise the Lord! I am also not going to give up hope that one day I will have a husband and kids, despite people saying I am getting on a bit and it might not happen! God has given me this strong desire and I hold onto the hope from scripture “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart”. The word of God is so encouraging. I may be on the wrong side of 35, but only just, I might not be as slim or as beautiful as others but I have a beauty within that comes from the Lord and the man that God has in mind for me will see that beauty one day. Oh how I long for that day, but for now I’m waiting, anticipating (had to steal that line!) for that time.

  29. Denise February 12, 2014 at 5:17 pm - Reply

    Hi Mandisa,

    Thank you for sharing. How inspiring it is to know we are not alone that other women and even to say men are learning NOT to give up on themselves, on there dreams, goal, future spouses, the list goes on. I recently received my Bachelor of Arts degree on May. I wanted to continue, and still do, my education and receive my Masters degree in Speech-Language Pathology. Becoming a speech therapist was and still is the calling, but not the only, calling in my life. I applied to 4 graduate programs including the one I received B.A. in but I was not accepted. I did what most people do and ask God why? I asked “why me?”, if He had given me that promise. The enemy started to fill my mind with so much negativity, doubt, unbelief, and even thought about parting away from the things of God. I thank God for people in my life who have taught me to NEVER GIVE UP because of them and God’s ravishing and unfailing love for me, I did not. During this situation, God spoke to me and said, “you have been chasing after my blessings and not chasing Me for Who I Am.” (Ouch, that definitely hurt.) I had choices on how to respond to Him 1.) run away or 2.) to chase/run after Him with passion like never before. I chose to run after Him, after His heart. God had to allow that to happen to me for me to come closer to Him; for me to be purged from selfishness, pride, arrogance, to be purged from ME! He also said, “Success is only one thing but success and righteousness/true godliness makes and eternal difference.” I am now applying (waiting) for my acceptance from God into a graduate school. Please pray with me and NEVER GIVE UP on your dreams.

  30. Laurel Wycoff February 12, 2014 at 7:43 pm - Reply

    My dream is to go back to school to become a pharmacist. It’s a just a little harder as a single mom, with elementary and middle school aged children, who must work full-time in order to make ends meet. My ex-mother in law has already taken one of my children away; I refuse to give any of my other children away. I no longer allow anyone to tell me I don’t have the time, nor allow someone else to run my life

  31. Bobbi February 12, 2014 at 8:21 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up began 30 yrs ago. I was born with spina bifida. The doctors gave my parents little hope for me & said that if I did survive I would never be a productive member of society. My family has always believed in me & my parents taught me about The Lord all along. Today I am a college graduate, working with students who have disabilities to obtain their degrees. I absolutely love my job! I lost my mother & biggest fan almost four years ago. She was the one who always told me I could be & do anything I set my mind to with God’s help. I miss her so much & all of her encouragement & love. She believed that God would give me the desires of my heart & taught me to believe as well. God is still working in my life everyday. I have challenges that I face but He gives me the strength to never give up. I am still trusting that He will bring my hearts desire in the man He has planned for me. He has brought me through multiple surgeries & situations. He has give me the ability to sing for Him & I want to honor Him in all I do. He has brought me too far to give up now!

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  33. Jennifer February 12, 2014 at 8:30 pm - Reply

    On never giving up:
    I’m 35 and in January was hospitalized for a week for a blood clot in my leg and ivc (stomach). Prior to that, I had been working two jobs and just going, going, going. Constant busyness. This life event has caused me to step back and realize how much time I was not spending with my daughter, who turned 11 when I was in the hospital.
    She is a beautiful girl who needs her mama.
    This week, I have started driving again. I have picked up my daughter from school three times this week! It makes me happy to wait in the parent line. Usually I am pouring into other people’s kids. This week I have picked up Emily and enjoyed those “how was your day?” conversations. God really closed the door to my second job of tutoring. Why? It occurs after school on evenings–the very time I have with my daughter. Seriously–3 clients just stopped setting appointments.

    On chatterbox:
    My church friends have been absolutely amazing through all this! They visited, prayed, sent flowers, gave me Jesus Calling and healing CDs, brought food for an army! The list goes on. They truly are showing Christ’s love. I downloaded you version again and have become more regular with devotion times. Events have caused me to cry out to God in prayer. I’ve read a lot of inspirational word-based posts on Facebook. My friends who are missionaries from Kenya have sent links to Judah Smith’s sermons. People have been such a blessing. Oh. And I’ve cried. For a while in 2013 I tried so hard not to cry. Now I cry tears of joy too. Sometimes you just get that knot in your throat and you cry. As women, we cry. I can be okay with that.
    I agree with what others have posted regarded listening to God’s promises of who He says we are! PAIS–child servant of the King!
    Hebrews 1:3. Favorite. Verse. Ever.

  34. Jeannie Smith February 12, 2014 at 8:33 pm - Reply

    My journey began in 2006 when I was diagnosed by the Mayo Clinic having spinal cerebellum Ataxia. I felt my life was over looking back it actually was the way I knew it anyway, everything has changed. The way I walk the way I think the way I’m moving to everything in life now.
    I’m greatful to have hootenanny ataxia because like Paul thorn I depend on God for every step literally that I take daily now! I have to focus on him if I want to walk or do
    With God’s grace the degeneration of my cerebellum has stopped now! By changing my foods and using them as medication along with everything in my environment by depending on God,. Letting him be seen by letting others know or whoever will listen what God has done for me by making me stronger I’m an over color because the doctors were looking at me in disbelief that it has stopped they said nobody is ever done that before. So I’m working on making then a believer of God because they believe in science not God! I’m still able to walk without aids and can breath on my own still! Yes I’m an Overcommer! And No I won’t give up because the Dr’s need to know God!

  35. Laura Turner February 12, 2014 at 8:36 pm - Reply

    After being left on Christmas Eve with my two boys after an 18 year marriage. I have a story to tell. Too big to include on this post. But what I want women to know more than anything is that you are never alone. God walks right beside you…even when it feels so empty and alone. Fall to your knees and let Jesus be the lover of your soul. I had to learn the hard way but I overcame and have my two precious gifts with me always. My Nick and Josh. God will keep us safe always. Thanks for letting me share my strife and triumph over this life.

  36. Gracie White February 12, 2014 at 8:36 pm - Reply

    Hi. I’m not giving up on life. God gave me this life and I’m going to use it to tell the world about Him! I was in public school ever since kindergarten up until last year when I was in public school and in 8th grade, I got the strong calling to be homeschooled, after discussing it with my family, and praying A LOT, my family made the decision for me to be homeschooled. I could NOT imagine my life being any different. I know with ALL my heart it’s where God has called me. It’s sad, but i get all kinds of expressions and comments when I tell them I’m homeschooled. I am out to make an impact in this world. I am not giving up on my homeschool journey and I’m not gonna let the enemies take over me and consume me. I am out to leave a mark and make an impact…and I’m not giving up! I pray everyday that Hod would someday send me the perfect Godly man, and I am not giving up!

  37. April February 12, 2014 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is waiting for my future husband. I have had many people over the years say to me “do you think you’re just picky?” “Why are you still single?” The question “why are you still single?” is one of the most frustrating questions there is. As if there’s an answer to that?! But the question “do you think you’re just picky?” I find to be very interesting. Sure, some may see it that way. I do have a mental “checklist” for lack of a better word, but who doesn’t? We all have things that we want in a mate and things we feel we couldn’t live with. And if waiting for those things and not settling just to be married means I’m being picky, than so be it, I’m picky I guess! My answer to that question is always this…, I don’t I am, but if nothing else in life, shouldn’t the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with be something you’re picky about? I think so! I am soon going to be 34 years old so of course, naturally, I feel I should be married by now and have children, but God is obviously still preparing him for me and me for him and I’m not giving up! It’s been a looooooong, very sad journey at times, but I’m not giving up. My future is in God’s hands and He knows the desire of my heart. I 100% believe that he wouldn’t put this desire on my heart if He didn’t have someone for me. We just started a series at church about relationships/dating/marriage and my pastor said the best things this past Sunday……we have the right feelings, but it’s just the wrong season so enjoy the season that you’re in. That’s what I’m trying to do! Let the journey continue!

  38. Alicia February 12, 2014 at 9:59 pm - Reply

    My never giving up has changed throughout the different seasons of my life. Right now it’s pouring into others the gift of contentment God has given me and reminding others we are who God says we are, not what others say and not what we say we are!! It’s a battle because I have to always remind myself otherwise satan sneaks in to try to steal my joy. I’m not gonna allow that to happen !!

  39. Joyous DeMark February 12, 2014 at 10:02 pm - Reply

    Wow, this is so relevant to me right now. I feel like for about 2-3 years, I have been thrown some wild experiences, such as problems with finding a job that’s in my field, being tempted, dealing with inward pressure to “find a mate,” finding friends, and most importantly, not straying with my call that God has on my life. I know I’m doing the right thing, but just because your always doing the “right thing,” it doesn’t mean that you won’t have hold ups, confrontations with people, or obstacles with personal & spiritual growth. To get more strength and stand up to my insecurities, I just have found peace with God’s word and believing He helps me. He makes me able. I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. I know I can do it, I just can’t listen to the people around me, the luring “compromises,” or downplaying God’s plans and callings on my life. I have to take my thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ. Negative chatterbox does try to get at me, and it tries to put all of us down. It has effected everyone at one point or another. But God’s opinion is the opinion who counts. It because of Jesus I’m here, and Jesus thinks were beautifully and wonderfully made. I thank God for giving me confidence. It’s not always easy, but his words make it easy to get back up again. I replace those lies with the truth of the One who has never told a lie, Jesus Christ.

  40. Felicia February 12, 2014 at 10:03 pm - Reply

    My journey of not giving up is getting through a tough divorce. See he appeared to be the man we all pray for….my first gift was a bible from him, he was in the church, serving bring others to Christ, in bible study, doing a masters in theology and to top it off he was educated, had a great job, and while he was considered the nerdy one, he seemed quiet and nice. No one knew he had a double life. I didn’t know how calculated he was in creating the “good life” so know one would believe the “bad life”. When God started revealing what was really going on and I confronted him, he lied and denied even when I had evidence. It turned abusive. I stood for my marriage, because I believe God can do anything. 2.5 years of praying and fasting for this man and the more me and my small group prayed, the more angry and vengeful he became. He turned against me and set out to “punish” me for trying to expose the truth….I didn’t know he had prepared for this day and fabricated a story to refute what I was saying …..needless to say…I lost pretty much everything except God and a small circle of people….I lost friends, family, church family, money, house, job opportunity, my reputation because it was too hard for people to know who was telling the truth and because of his position and money people took his side. It’s a hard thing to keep you head up when you know what people think is pure lies. It also hurts when you truly thought you were doing things Gods way, marrying a believer, asking counsel of God and wise older Christians and you end up in the disaster I experienced. I didn’t know this level of deception. The shame of making a bad decision with such lasting painful consequences, and really feeling no hope of having a family or kids of your own…you just feel such failure and regret and having to fight those feelings everyday is why I need Jesus so much, everyday all day. Out of know where you will recall his mean words of “I hate you”, “this is why I can’t stand to look at you”, “all you do is make me unhappy” I wish I never met you” I wish you would die”. Mandisa I hear you when you say identify the lie, replace it with truth, hit replay….this is my cross I carry daily…oh but for the love of Christ I overcome ever day.

  41. Stacey Pace February 12, 2014 at 10:41 pm - Reply

    I just dealt with this message this week with my five year old. She was called chubby by another student. She came home and told me how hurt, sad, and angry it made her. I told her what do you think…do you think you are chubby? No…what does God say about you? He made you…you are perfect just the way He made you. He says you are beautiful…and child you are beautiful inside and out! Now, what does Satan tell us? Lies…lies..and more lies! He comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Now who are you choosing to listen to? Satan or God? She looked at me and said she KNOWS she is beautiful just the way she is…that she is going to listen to God!

  42. Taryn February 12, 2014 at 10:49 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up is taking all the eating habits and control issues I had growing up and changing those into healthy habits both physically and spiritually. My weight has caused me to lose my job this past year, and constantly keeps me from chasing dreams. And it’s kept me from truly honoring God and serving Him like I know He desires. To get rid of the negative, I’ve learned to lean in close to a few good friends who can lift me up to God when needed, and encourage me along my journey. I’ve also learned to rely and depend on God like never before, as losing my job was when I hit bottom. Along with that, learning to listen to what God says about me…and then believing those things (believing them is the hardest part). I still fall, mess up, and don’t believe God…but thank goodness He is a loving God who always takes me back!

  43. Les Paul Garner February 12, 2014 at 10:54 pm - Reply

    Face twenty-five years a the least I while being accused of touching a child in my class. I went to court over two years, three judges, three prosecuter . The state of Florida said it would drop the charge give me two years probation and aclass if I sign the papers. I said no I have not did anything and am not going to accept it. They came back with probation only, I said to myself self paying probation is not being free . One last time in court after giving up my house to pay the lawyer to only get rready for trial. I was looking for a passage in the bible. I looked the books of Kings, Chronicles, and Samuel; the words of the bible jump off the page in light. 2Chronicles20:17. God had spoke I knew it was over IN celebrated before the victory. Today I work for the city I live in coach basketball for PAL, and volunteer at the counties schools. God increased my faith mightly. BLESS HIS HOLY NAME In preaching God has give many gifts to me in and beyond the four doors of the church Jesus did it.

  44. Stacey February 12, 2014 at 10:56 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up deals with Satan and his constant lies. I struggle with confidence. I’m a Christian school teacher and have been for 17 years now. But there are some moments and times that I doubt myself…doubt my influence…doubt my abilities. Doubt that I’m making a difference. I get discouraged when parents become unhappy, instead of reminding myself that this is what the Lord has called me to and He will help me through all of it. Plus it’s been a difficult few years. Six years ago my dad passed away from leukemia and diabetes. My mom and I took care of him at home until the last week of his life. My mom struggled with losing her best friend for 36 years. Not long at all after he passed I noticed my mom struggling with what I thought to be symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. I couldn’t get her doctor to see what I saw. And she kept just passing it off as depression. Finally through a friend, I was able to find a doctor that saw what I saw, and actually tested for Alzheimer’s and then sent us to a medical center that could help more. So, not long after my dad’s death, I was taking care of my mom. I am an only child, so I was taking care of her at home while still teaching full-time. Two and a half to three years ago, her symptoms got worse. School got out for the summer and she started doing worse, so I went pretty much right to full time taking care of her. I was able to get a couple hours of help each day, but otherwise it was just me taking care of her myself. But I didn’t want her in a home. And the Lord was gracious enough to give me the strength to take care of her, helping her get around, changing her diapers, cleaning up her messes, feeding her, trying to keep her motivated and stimulated. Then in August 2012, just a week or so before teachers had to show up at school for orientation week, my mom passed away. She died on a Friday, I had her funeral the next weekend and a couple of days later I was trying to get my room set up for the school year. There wasn’t much time to process and rest before school. Things have since then been tough financially, between trying to keep our house and take care of the bills, it has been a very discouraging time. Satan tries to keep me discouraged by feeding my mind with his lies. I’m still single, but have such a strong desire to be married and have children, but I’m getting older, and even have people telling me it will be harder for me to have children at 40. So, having no siblings, no husband, not even a boyfriend or anything close, no mom or dad, it is lonely at home. I thankfully have my sweet dog, but Satan wants me to focus on all the things that I don’t have that I desire. I have determined that when Satan comes at me, I need to remind myself, and him who MY God is, and all the things that He has done for me. It’s not easy, and sometimes Satan’s lies are so loud they drown out my encouragements to myself, but I won’t give up!! Mandisa, this is one reason I love you so much!! Your songs are so real, and hit me right where I am, and are constantly such an encouragement to me. I even had your song “You Wouldn’t Cry” (Andrew’s Song) played at my mom’s funeral! Thank you both for being beautiful, encouraging spirits!

  45. Steven February 12, 2014 at 10:59 pm - Reply


    I don’t really need anything or a prize. What Melinda said really hit home because it is kind of the same place I have been for a long time. I battled depression for a long time in college. At the moment, I am taking a break to process all that God did and is doing in my life. Just recently, a few months ago in fact, you could have found me in a closet on my dorm floor debating with myself on how it would be beneficial for me to take my life. I had thought previously about cutting myself or starving myself. It was not anything anyone said really that made me feel this way. I did it completely on my own. I started to believe one lie after another. I believed the lie that beauty only lay skin deep. With me being overweight and not the most handsome guy around. It hurt. I believed the lie that I was being a burden to my friends by sharing my problems with them. I became silent. I believed the lie that God had made a mistake when He made me. I started to give up. I believed many more lies all running a cycle through my mind every day all day. I was breaking and I would not let anyone see. I did not trust that the amazing friends that I had could love me past what I was believing about myself. Through a series of circumstances, I came to the realization that I was not letting God love me because I didnt think His love could reach me. All I saw was a messed up, flawed, little 19 year old kid who was hurting and scared and blind. I had to take a chance that God saw more than I did. It turns out that He saw a lot more than that. He saw me and called me beautiful. I cannot put into words how much my heart wells up when I think about how good of a Father He was to me. He never quit loving me even when I had stopped loving myself.

    I think part of being a true overcomer is overcoming for others. What I mean by that is well I have a bit of a story behind that too. i was at a prayer meeting and this girl came up to me and asked if she could share with me something that God wanted me to hear. Im paraphrasing. She said that she saw a little plant, small and dripping with rain. She said that it had come through a huge rainstorm, but it was still standing and growing. She told me this after I decided to begin the journey to accept His love for me. I started to think about it trying to connect the picture to my situation. I then thought about what that little plant was going to grown into. A tree I do believe. A tree gives shelter to animals and even people sometimes. It helps others. Umm….it is kind of the same way with us. Part of truly overcoming a difficult situation is turning it into a testimony that not only glorifies God but brings others to Christ as well. It might take a while to get there. I am still on that journey myself. An overcomer is not always made in a day. Forgive me for my grammatical errors and lack of eloquence. 🙂

    that is all….thanks for reading.

  46. JoAnn February 12, 2014 at 11:05 pm - Reply

    My journey of never giving up began about 12 yrs ago during this 24 yr marriage that I recently had to place in the Lord’s hands completely, and move to a safer place. 12 years ago no one could have ever convince me that I would be living in an abusive marriage to one addicted to prescription meds. But 12 yrs of these very strong meds can really change a person completely. And they did. After me going to counseling for years, seeking support and prayer through bible studies, marriage boot camp and more, the years kept going by and things were getting worse. Instead of me helping things by doing more, praying more and trying to be a better wife, I was enabling him and his habits and pacifying his anger. Our two teenage boys couldn’t see anything different in their dad because they only knew him that way. This last year I decided I had to leave because of safety issues. And due to financial issues and him cutting all finances off to me, I had to file for divorce.

    The crashing of the negative chatterbox and replacing those daily lies with God’s truth happened in May of 2013, when I opened the door to my little house and realized I was no longer walking on egg shells! I was like a bird who was able to grow back it’s feathers again; after having them plucked out one at a time, day after day. In fact, this little bird is not only crashing that chatterbox, but throwing away it’s key! God has so much more for this little bird. Just call me Miss Peacock! Thank you for your beautiful music!! It always blesses me.

  47. Deb February 12, 2014 at 11:32 pm - Reply

    This reminds me of the word God gave me for this year “stand” –as in stand in His truth. I too am fighting that daily battle to replace the enemies lies with His truth. May God give us all the strength to stand in His truth!

  48. Elaina February 12, 2014 at 11:40 pm - Reply

    My journey is about learning to honor and care for this body that God gave me because for most of life I haven’t. I have turned to other things that I thought would bring satisfaction and numb the pain, but I am discovering that they only caused more harm. At times I have been motivated by what I felt was my obligation to serve Him, but I’m learning its more about loving myself because He loves me. And in that He will help me to love others.
    I loved what you wrote about recognizing the lie and replacing it with the truth. I find the Holy Spirit has been leading me to do this much more than ever before. I’m learning to catch myself in the middle of buying into the lie, stopping my thought process and proclaiming the truth over my situation. I know that in order to grow stronger I have to spend more time reading the word of God and filling up my “truth” tank because the enemy is just waiting for an opportunity to speak what is contrary to God’s words. Thank you for your blog!

  49. Jennifer G February 13, 2014 at 1:24 am - Reply

    My journey of never giving up…

    In 2012, my best friend of nearly 20 years walked out of my life. Six months later, I lost my job, my grandmother, my apartment, and my dog within 3 1/2 months of each other. With a year full of loss, I couldn’t see my feet in front of me. I fell into a depression and began thinking of a way to end my life. I moved back home with my dad and was there for 12 hours a day by myself. So, I knew if I killed my self, it would be hours before my dad would find me. But, every time I thought of how I was going to do it, I would think “Daddy is going to come home and find me. I can’t do that to him.” (I know now that was God’s way of pulling me back, he was whispering to me). I didn’t go through with my plan, but I stayed in a depression. I finally got another job. And God put people in my life that are godly and support me. I am at a church where I am going in Christ and loving every minute of it.

    It isn’t that I never gave up, but that God didn’t give up on me.

  50. Katherine Quesada February 13, 2014 at 9:01 am - Reply

    Were do I start? Im surrounded by naysayers. Following my dreams at my age no doubt all while surrounded by the people who are supposed to love and support me. Kicking when Im down when all I needed was a kind word and warm embrace. I’ve hit the bottom, but yet I remain hopeful in the climb out of the pit. I block out what naysayers have to say and keep my eyes fixed on the one who holds me, he is my comfort, he is my warm embrace, my strength and my guide. Thank you for the gift of your holy spirit you are faithful.

  51. Elisa February 14, 2014 at 7:13 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the idea of getting Crash the Chatterbox and the link showing the publisher would send copies out for free after a purchase! I bought two and so I am going to get two free – what an awesome thing to do, I can’t wait to give three out as gifts! I am 28 and single and an 8th grade teacher. My students are constantly asking why I am single and I love smiling at them and telling them because I am waiting on God. I love showing them that single woman do not have to be sad or desperate but can be joyful in the waiting. I lead a girls club at school and I teach my girls often to recognize the lie and replace it with truth. We have been learning what the lies are disguised as and what God’s truth says about it. So when I read that you said the same thing in your blog, I was right there with ya girl and proclaiming an AMEN! Thank you for these daily blogs during this week., You are a blessing to all!

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