For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

2018--If I only had one year, I hope to spend it well.

I am pondering the year slipping from 2017 into 2018, and I keep thinking that there were people this time last year who had such great hopes and plans for this year but through tragic loss aren't here. And there are people who are living with the reality they may not be here for next New Year's Eve. And I keep asking myself one question:
If I only had this year, how would I spend it?
Praying for each of us that we spend it well,
not just for ourselves...
...but for those who love us and need us to spend it well for them and with them...
...for those who need us to spend it well because we will slip into and out of their lives in a moment or a day or a span...because of what we leave behind when we leave their presence...
...because of the ripples in time our lives leave even before they are ended...
...because eternity is built with seconds in the day, not years in a lifetime...
...because when it is over...the year and our lives...we want what is left to bring tears of joy because of what we have been and not tears of sadness because of what we haven't.
May 2018 be a year well spent.
Jerri L Kelley

Friday, December 29, 2017

If You are Grieving and I Could Tell You Anything Right Now...

Grief is its own hell, isn't it? Tonight I was asked for advice and encouragement, and there is so much I wanted to say. There is STILL so much I want to say, but I think I would start with this:
Please, hold on. I know there will be times you just flat out want to quit. You want the pain to stop. You want the empty place to stop. You want the questions to stop. You want to quit feeling alone in all of it. You just feel not this.
And it is tempting to quit. Whether that be with drugs, alcohol, a bad relationship, suicide, anything that will stop the pain. I know it is tempting because believe me, I had many days when I just wanted to feel "not this." But the only way through grief is to keep walking. Please, don't quit.
Take a break.
Take a breather.
Take a walk.
Take time to scream. Goodness knows you've got some rights to scream.
Take a nap. Sometimes just a sleep reboot can do wonders.
Take it 5 minutes at a time. I have no idea how many times I've gotten through the day 5 minutes at a time.
Find some pages that encourage you and lift you, somewhere you feel you are understood and can be real. Those can be great safe places and life rafts in an ocean of loss.
Please don't give up.
Praying for you--for your comfort, for your healing, for your strength to keep going.
With my love and prayers,

Sunday, December 24, 2017

My Christmas Prayer for You

My beloved friends and family,
I pray for each of you on this celebration of the Messiah.
I pray that the aching hearts will be healed...
...that families will be pulled together, not apart...
...that miracles you are waiting for will come quickly...
...that your hope is restored...
...that you know joy that reaches down into your soul...
...that you can look around you, see someone else in need, and respond...
...that you have the life-filling sense of wonder...
...that you not be bogged down in religion but that you have the craziest love affair you could ever imagine with the Messiah...
because a love affair with the Messiah is the life changer.
It makes the hard places easier and the blessed places breathtaking.
I pray whatever your needs are this season, whatever your hopes, dreams, or hurts, that you know He knows, and He cares.
You are deeply loved.
You are so loved that God sent His only begotten son that if you should believe on Him you will not perish but have everlasting life. And that, my precious friends and family, is what I would give each and every one of you.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Some Days I Just Wish Someone Thought I was that Kind of Special, and God Does

I love God. Even when I don't like His choice of roads much, I love Him.
There are days when He utterly overwhelms me.

You know, I have been single nearly 7 years now, and I haven't at all. Today I walked by the bouquets at the grocery store, and I had just a moment of...I couldn't tell you the last time someone gave me flowers, but I think it was a friend of mine six years ago because she passed them in the store and thought of me. And really, it is okay that I don't get flowers. It is okay that I haven't dated. But some days, it would just be nice to be. ..the one someone thinks of, calls just because, or gives flowers to. I'm human that way.

This morning I sat in my rocker praying about something very specific, and I had the simple Thought, "Wait for it." And there was this sense that it would just suddenly be answered. While I sat there, I had this is thought to watch the sunrise, which was nuts because we had clouds, but I stood at my window and watched the clouds turn pretty colors, and then they sort of broke up and lifted from the horizon. In the next minute, the sun broke over the horizon, just under the clouds. I just stood and smiled. Okay, so a sunrise sometimes trumps flowers.

I prayed and watched the sun until the light was too bright, and I told the Lord about something that was bothering me, and an hour or so later my friend Debra called and said she wanted to tell me a story. It was the perfect encouragement. It is nice to get calls because He is thinking about me, you know?

Then this afternoon the Lord and I were discussing my writing, videos I am working on, and my business I am developing, and I told Him honestly, I know there will be haters. I am not sure how to deal with the haters. Then I read Kristina Kuzmic''s post about the hate comments she gets and her response. Just posted today. Now did God do that just for me? He loves me enough that He very well may have.

And then, there are the THREE letters TODAY about the crazy way our insurance may or may not work next year, and I just...hate this, and I heard so sweetly, "Don't worry. I got this. It'll be fine," and you know what? I believe Him. You know why? Because Love is trustworthy, and today He has loved wide open.

Yeah, sometimes the road isn't my idea of happy trails, but I sure love the One who walks these roads with me.

Jerri L. Kelley

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Witness the Difference

There is a great difference between
"witnessing for Christ"
"being witnessed as a Christian."
Make sure you are not so busy doing the former
that you fail at being the latter.
--Jerri L. Kelley--

Wednesday, December 6, 2017


So today...choosing.
Looking at the past.
Seeing the record of faithfulness.
Seeing the line we are on and waiting for the answer He is going to write, knowing the pen is already in His hand.
Not freaking out. Finding stillness....
Trust isn't an emotion. It's a choice.
Resting isn't always a default. It is a discipline.
Today...choosing to trust and rest in Him...

"Choose this day whom you trust your lives to.
As for me and my house, we trust out lives to the Lord."
--Joshua 24:15

Monday, December 4, 2017

When Your Monday is Too Hard for Words

So, Monday is coming in hard and heavy, and it might be just a bit breathtaking in not all the most wonderful ways. I've been thinking of what I would tell you if I were sitting with you sipping sweet tea right now, and I finally figured it out.

Sometimes I simply didn't have words. I couldn't pray. I couldn't communicate how i felt. I couldn't process. There were no words, and it felt like I was just trapped in the so-freaking-hard with no way out. I would end up uttering s...omething incredibly profound like, "God, help me." Often, a verse or just a sentence or two would come to mind. Maybe lyrics from a song, and I would sit in stillness and just speak those lines over and over and over.

Honestly, I don't remember any "wand" moments where it felt like God waved a magic wand and POOF! it was better, but, I do remember feeling like I was out of the dark fog, like a spell was being lifted, like oppression was being lifted. It helped.

It helped me get to a place where I could breath and knew I could stand up and keep moving. It allowed me not to be in the "hell moment" anymore, and that was vital.

So, beloveds, if you were here right now, I would give you some sweet tea and a rocker on my deck in the sun, and we woulds it together and meditate on whatever verse, lyrics, or sentences you have. Since we are not together, you can do that where you are. If you want, share them with me, and I will pray them with you for you. Our prayers will rise as incense before the Lord because leaning into Him is an offering of praise, and He finds it beautiful.

My heart and prayers are with you...
Jerri L. Kelley

Friday, December 1, 2017

If You are the Victim of a Sexual Violation, If I Could Tell You Anything Right Now

Beloveds, tonight my heart is broken for those who have been the victim of sexual violations. Since my walk this morning, I have been praying for those affected by this...godless act of theft and cruelty. I have prayed for those who are so tired of hurting from the effects that they are considering death, not because they want to die but because it is too painful to live like this. And I am so sorry. SO sorry it hurts like that. I'm sorry you suffer from nightmares and memories and the ongoing torture of self-loathing, feeling unprotected, fear of it happening again, the further violation of not being believed, the fear of telling anyone at all. I'm so sorry, and if I could tell you anything right now, I would beg you to not give up. I would BEG you, with the tears that are in my eyes right, to not give up.
You are worth fighting for.
You are not invisible.
You are not alone.
And I would tell you--
It is not you fault.
You didn't cause this.
You don't deserve this.
This is not about you, who you are, or what you did. This is all about the person--or persons--who did this to you.
Don't let someone else' horrible character and shameful actions determine how you see yourself.
God made you as a gift to you, for you to open a little bit at a time as you grow and mature and become. Please, please don't let some heinous person steal that gift forever. I know it may take time and help to believe you are a gift, to believe you are beautiful or handsome, to believe you are perfectly made. It may take help and time to learn the truth--that you are amazing in wondrous ways that do not cause you pain. Beloved, YOU are NOT the one who caused you pain.
There is so much I want to tell you. So much I want you to be able to know. But right now, please know you are not alone. You do not have to hide anymore. You do not have to lie. You do not have to stay silent.
You are precious. You were made to love yourself as God made you and ot enjoy yourself and to feel safe in yourself. This thing that happened to you is not God's will, and His heart is broken for you. He is not ashamed of you or disgusted by you. He is reaching out to you. His heart is to restore you.
Please, don't give up. Please. Don't. Give. Up.
My heart and prayers are with you, beloveds.
With all my love and support...