• Julie Busler

walking in obedience

Last year, I sat around a few tables pushed together with other women as we planned a women’s event in which several women from our church would share their stories for an untold number of viewers online. I sat quietly as the other ladies discussed amazing women of faith who would do an excellent job glorifying God with their story.

I smiled and seemed engaged, yet a war was going on in my mind. With each moment that passed, an overwhelming urge to volunteer my story of mental illness - a story most of them probably didn’t know - became so strong that it felt like my heart would beat out of my chest. The story I held so close and pretended wasn’t even real was begging to be shared and I was determined to ignore it.

Then in a moment of spontaneity, when I literally knew without a shadow of a doubt that I was being led by God, I leaned over and whispered to one of the ladies something like “do you think my story of being in psychiatric hospitals would be too much to share?” She had no warning, very little (if any) knowledge of what I was even talking about, and I hadn’t handpicked her to ask for guidance.

I was freaking out and she was divinely by my side.

Her response to my testing of the waters would set the course of what has become one of the most precious seasons of growth and realizing a calling on my life.

She immediately encouraged me to speak up, so I did.

Church people: your reaction to other Christians who feel led to use their not-so-pretty stories for God’s glory has influence. I was insecure and being vulnerable about mental illness was so foreign to me that had she hushed me, acted like I had been part of a scandal, or hesitated, I would have quickly retreated back to the cave of shame that felt more comfortable than obedience.

I’m so thankful I had her blessing. I did not need it to follow God, but feeling the camaraderie of another believer gave me courage to obey in one of the scariest moments of my life. That moment of obedience has led to more freedom and opportunities than I ever imagined.

Holy Spirit, give us wisdom on how to spur one another on To see the video that emerged from this moment, visit

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