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Category Archives for "This is My Story (series)"

Nov 13

3 Simple Ways to Start a Sabbath Practice

By Dana Trent | Ask Steve Austin , faith , Mental Health , This is My Story (series)

I am a fledgling sabbath-keeper. Though I’ve written a book about it, embraced my 52 chances per year to practice it, and have even preached it, I am a less-than-perfect sabbatarian. And that’s OK. But Americans think we have to be the best at everything. As my friend Rev. Elizabeth Hagan writes, “I’m a better […]

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Mar 06

The Hardest Question I’ve Ever Asked

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Messy Grace , Recovery , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church , This is My Story (series)

We have the ability to change the course of our lives when we become aware of that core of sacredness—which I call the Beloved—and begin to live with it as our guide. Whenever we have a flash of love, innocence, acceptance, inspiration, awe, or wonder, or we’re moved to tears or filled with joy, we […]

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Sep 15

The Importance of Being Real

By Steve Austin | faith , Messy Grace , This is My Story (series)

I blog often about how the power of vulnerability and transparency has changed my life. But it’s only because a lack of those things created an environment of toxicity and shame that nearly killed me. I was recently interviewed by Jon Fuller for the R U Real Podcast and in our talk, we cover the power of vulnerability for the Christian and anyone recovering from abuse, addiction, or a suicide attempt.

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Sep 11

Why I Trust God in the Midst of Tragedy

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Messy Grace , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church , This is My Story (series)

I am no longer the boy who intentionally memorizes Scripture, and I haven’t been the President of anything in more than a decade. I work a part-time job, live paycheck-to-paycheck, and being hired by a new church was one of the scariest experiences in the past four years.

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Aug 22

One Question About My Faith That Really Makes Me Squirm

By Guest Blogger | faith , The Struggle With Church , This is My Story (series)

“So, are you Pentecostal?”
After almost 3 decades of Sunday’s spent within the four walls of various charismatic denominations, that question still squeezes my stomach into knots and induces awkward laughter befitting a pubescent boy talking to his crush. Mainly because the question is accompanied with a look of disgust, followed by a litany of questions to point out that I am, basically, a heretic.

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Aug 12

Is the Holy Spirit Your Comfort…or A Crazy Cousin?

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Recovery , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church , This is My Story (series)

During my childhood, I saw people act forcefully on behalf of the Holy Spirit, but I never experienced Him that way. I knew the Holy Spirit as a gentle nudge, a Comfort, like one of my Grandmother’s quilts. But what I heard was that He was the hall monitor of our souls: the ever-watchful Eye of a perfect and holy God, who was more interested in finding the secrets we hid in the darkest places of our wandering hearts than being the balm for our weary souls.

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Aug 09

Why Being a 90’s Kid in the Church was Scary as Hell

By Steve Austin | faith , Family , Messy Grace , Millennials , Parenting , Recovery , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church , This is My Story (series)

I just knew the Henchmen of Heaven would come and steal me away in the middle of the night as a thirteen-year-old and damn me to eternal punishment early because I’d said “shit” or been caught lingering too long on the adult movie channels late at night at my grandparents’ house. Any 90’s boy knows exactly what I’m talking about: the high numbers on satellite, blurred out, with the fuzzy green and pink lines. Every once in awhile you could catch the shadow of a boob if you just stared hard enough.

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Aug 08

6 Ways to Recover from a Suicide Attempt

By Steve Austin | Anxiety , Best of Messy Grace , Depression , Mental Health , Recovery , Recovery from a Suicid... , This is My Story (series)

Since I’ve begun sharing how I went from a being a pastor to being hospitalized in a psych ward, people often ask about my recovery. Everyone wants to know, is there a single solution? Where does the magic lie? How do they get their own lives (or their loved ones’) back? Or, as others have said, “What is the one thing that made you want to start living again?”

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Aug 05

How I Found Radical Grace in a Facebook Group

By Guest Blogger | faith , Family , Mental Health , Messy Grace , Recovery , This is My Story (series)

I have found a virtual community, via Facebook and this blog, which expresses love in a way like I have never experienced before. It’s a place where everyone is accepted – regardless of station in life, gender, sexuality, chosen religion or any other differences. A place where seeking healing from brokenness is celebrated. Where friendships are born in an instant. Where life is messy and grace is abundant.
I have found freedom in a way I cannot otherwise explain. Through reaching out during some incredibly dark moments, I found grace, peace, and a lack of judgement.

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