Breathe Underwater was a dream implanted into my heart when my name was “mommy” and naptime was my lifeline. Despite years of faithful investment in church and ministry, I was stuck in a cycle of following formulas and performing for praise. I longed to experience the love and grace of God, but still found myself drowning in a sea of self-sufficiency. God interrupted that strangled struggle by penetrating my heart with an offer of something more and better. It was only a whisper, but it was glorious. It was a sacred moment in which I knew that He saw me, loved me, and accepted me. Just one encounter with Him, one sip of His life-giving grace, and I was hooked, completely lovestruck.
While pondering the wonder of my relief, I realized the magnitude of what I’d missed. Somehow, in all my years of Christian living, I’d overlooked the true gospel of grace and grabbed onto a false narrative, the gospel of works instead. I wondered if perhaps you had missed it too. And thus, the dream was born. One day, I would tell my story and testify of the good grace of God.
What followed wasn’t the writing of a manuscript, a publishing contract, or a book tour but a long and complicated journey of heartache and healing. Unbeknownst to me, my road of discovery had only just begun. The next several years were spent trudging through the valley of the shadow of death while learning to hear Him, believe Him, and follow Him. My world was shattering while my soul was mending. I was losing ground circumstantially while making headway spiritually. All the while, I was capturing my darkest hours and sweetest victories on receipts, napkins, and church bulletins because the dream was still alive. One day, I would tell my story of God’s great and gracious rescue of my heart.
Fifteen years later, here it is; my account of the grace that is available in the suspense-filled moments of our lives; of the love that upholds us in the meantime. Because there is a God who loves sinners, who reveals Himself to outcasts, who provides abundance in times of famine, and who welcomes all who are thirsty to take a taste of His paradigm-shifting, soul-changing love.
My desire is that you would use this book as a tool. Perhaps it will provoke thought and motivate you to investigate the ideas presented. Maybe, it will provide you with a safe place to process your own story. And quite possibly, it could give you a platform to encourage others through a discussion group. Wherever you find yourself and whatever your needs happen to be, I pray you would drink it in deeply, my friends, and draw ever closer to the heart of God.