A Letter and Lots of Love to You, Dear Reader

February 12, 2015 | 8 comments

Hey friends,

I wish I could reach through the screen to hug you. I know you are there, on the other side of this screen, and I imagine your faces every time I sit here to write to you.

Over the years, through blogging, I’ve discovered this: “I’m not the only one.”

I’m not alone in my disordered thinking. I’m not alone in my self-doubt. I’m just like you. I’ve learned that we all struggle with purpose, with perfection, with feeling “not enough.” I’ve discovered that I’m not the only one who has this yammering inner critic, and I’m not the only one who desperately needs God to remind me who I really am. You’ve all been wonderful companions on this journey of words. Thank you for making me feel less alone, and thank you for reading along all these years.

I’m terribly afraid that all of that sounds like I’m about ready to say “goodbye.” Like I’m going to shut down this blog. I’m not! This is just me — your overly sentimental, sappy friend Jennifer, letting you know this Valentine’s Day week how much I appreciate that you’ve been here. I seriously love you guys, and I don’t tell you that enough.

Ok … so … (~wipes eyes, blows nose~) I have a little Valentine’s gift for you!

My friend Holley Gerth and I hosted a live webcast last night called “Breaking Up With Perfection,” and so many of you joined us! But, we knew that not everyone who wanted to view the webcast couldo join us. So we’re offering it to you, for free, on YouTube. If you’re reading this note from my blog, you can watch and play the video below. If you’re reading this in an email, you’ll probably need to click here to find the video. Feel free to share the YouTube link, or share this post on social media. We’d love to walk with women everywhere who want to ditch their toxic relationship with “perfection.”

Watch Breaking Up with Perfection

For Those Who Struggle with Disordered Eating

Also, this week, I joined FINDINGbalance for a free teleconference on approval and identity. This FREE teleconference is for anyone who struggles with approval, or people-pleasing, and it is especially geared toward those who have struggled with disordered eating. (FINDINGbalance is the leading Christian resource for daily help with eating and body image issues.)

You can find that conversation recording by clicking here. Again, feel free to share with friends or family!

So that’s all from these parts. Happy Valentine’s weekend, friends. May you know the true love of the Father. May you know that

you are utterly cherished. May you live in the freedom of a God who takes you just as you are.

Living PreApproved,

(Photo of me and my brother-in-law Mike at a recent speaking engagement. You can find a few of my upcoming speaking engagements over here, on my new speaking page!)


by | February 12, 2015 | 8 comments


  1. Susan Gadberry

    It was so good to hear your voice last night 🙂 I was so blessed to get to watch and listen to the live broadcast. I’m so glad you’re not shutting down the blog—since I just recently found it! 😀

    • dukeslee

      So glad you could join us, Susan.

  2. Lynn D. Morrissey

    Oh yay, Jennifer! You are so right: I thought you were closing up and calling it a day, albeit in a lovely, gracious, and compassionate way. Let me be bossy, though and say: Don’t do it! We need your words, gifts, and perspectives. And double yay! I was all set to watch your webcast, and Mike and I went on a car-date to get Sheridan from her late-night class, and she took forever (artists always do). So thank you for anticipating a gift your readers would love. Happy Valentine’s Day, dear one. You’re one special Valentine.

  3. Trudy Den Hoed

    I so appreciate you, too, Jennifer. Thank you for making us feel less alone, too. And thanks for publishing the broadcast here. I just listened to it, and I love it!

  4. aly d. chase

    Just watched the video, Jennifer. So much truth! I was yellin’ amen from
    my kitchen sink! Love you and Holley both and I am grateful that you
    are both allowing God to use you in our lives. xo

  5. June

    So appreciate you, Jennifer! Happy St. Valentine’s Day!

  6. Jody Ohlsen Collins

    Whew! I thought this was ‘goodbye’. Nope, just ‘hello, I love you.’ The feeling is mutual my friend.

  7. Nancy Ruegg

    You’re right, Jennifer: One of the best blessings of the blogosphere is getting acquainted with other Christian women from around the world, and discovering how alike we are–struggling with self-doubts, people-pleasing, perfectionism, purpose. We are so grateful for your creative and inspiring encouragement. Thank you for persevering!


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