There's always room for a new beginning!

{my images are free goodies for you to enjoy & share}

I pull the dusty journal from the corner of my nightstand and open to the first page. It’s dated July, 1996 and I’ve just graduated high school. I’m wrestling with who I am, who God is and what my future holds. I’ve grown weary of trying to be the “good” girl and I’m contemplating using college as a chance to rebel.

I want to grab that girl by the shoulders and say, “Don’t do it! You’re only setting yourself up for heartbreak!” But I can’t reach back through time and I already know how the story goes. That “good” girl goes off to college and makes some very destructive choices. By the last page of that diary she’s broken and it will take years for God to fully put the pieces back together again.

I set the book down and feel a wave of guilt wash over me. I hadn’t thought about those mistakes in so long. Suddenly I find myself begging God again, “Please forgive me.” And it seems He whispers to my soul, “I already did long ago.”

I realize then that I’m the one who can’t completely release my past. Sure, I don’t display it on the mantle of my living room. But I still have a place for it in my life–even if it’s just the dark corner of a nightstand where no one but me is likely to see it.

The time has come to really let go.

So this morning I did what I should have years ago. I tore that journal apart page by page and put it through our shredder.

When I got done all that remained was the cover…and one blank page. I laughed out loud when I saw it. Because I would have sworn last night I’d written on every square inch of paper. But isn’t that just like God? We think we’re done and He says, “There’s always room for a new beginning.”

I’m going to put that empty cover with the blank page back in my nightstand and pull it out again when I need to remember this: If God didn’t give up on me then, He’s not going to give up on me now.

Because here’s the uncomfortable truth: I will make more mistakes. Maybe not the same kind I did as a teenager but as long as I’m on earth I will fail and fall and need forgiveness.

Thankfully the true Author of my life is willing to let me start with a blank page as many times as needed. He’s offering the same to you. We all have parts of our story we would never want anyone to read. Moments the enemy loves to point to then say with a hiss, “God could never use you because of this.” Mistakes that make us look at each other and think, “She could never have done anything so shameful.”

But those are lies, friends. And when we look at each other, we only see the cover. We’re not that different. We’re all human and in need of new-page grace from a Savior Who’s a relentless Redeemer.

Will you join me in shredding your past? 

It’s time to let go and make room for the next chapter…


Holley Gerth

Breaking up with Perfection HolleyGerth.comp.s. If you want to learn more about embracing grace, knowing you’re loved and getting free from the pressure to be perfect…

Join my friend and fellow author Jennifer Dukes Lee for a free “Breaking Up with Perfection” webcast tonight, February 11th at 8:30 CST. It’s our Valentine’s Day gift to you! In case you missed it, there are more details about the webcast and a giveaway in Monday’s post.

Update: If you missed the webcast you can still watch it on YouTube! Just click here.

p.s. Is pressure to be perfect secretly hurting you? Take my one-minute quiz and find out. {click here to start}


Welcome to the Coffee for Your Heart weekly link-up! You’re an encourager so I’m asking you to pour out a little love with your words every Wednesday {link-up goes live at 5:30am CST}. Simply write an encouraging blog post and then share it here. Don’t have a blog? You can still write an encouraging comment. If you’re reading this by email, go to to see all the fun and join in too.

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I’m having Coffee For Your Heart with my friend Holley Gerth

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About Holley

About Holley

Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author and Life Coach

I like humans, words, and good coffee. And I’d love to help you beat what’s holding you back, become all you’re created to be, and kick butt for the greater good.

Cheering you on,


Never Miss a Thing

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