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Catch Nicole in Catching Faith 2 now on DVD and streaming, buy your copy now!

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    Finding Purpose in the Storm, by PI Girl Alyssa

    Your parents’ divorce. Heartbreak. The death of a loved one. Many of you sweet girls have faced tragedies that have changed your lives drastically. You may be feeling alone, lost, swallowed up in an abyss that threatens to crush your spirit at any moment.

    Now, I’m not here to simply give you the typical remedy of “Trust in God, sweetheart”—although you still should, of course; just do it along with several other things. Instead of that trite emotional “prescription,” I’m going to tell you the steps that took my perspective on my pain and wounds and turned them around into something beautiful.

    1. I took the penny out of my eye. I once had a sweet history teacher who told me a story about a time when she was facing a childhood crisis and her aunt had told her to “get the penny out of her eye.” As an explanation, the aunt told my history teacher to hold up a penny close to one eye, shutting the other.

    “What do you see?” her aunt asked.

    Of course, my history teacher could see nothing with the thing blocking her vision.

    “Now hold it out in front of you,” said her aunt.

    My history teacher’s vision suddenly came back, and the penny became very small in contrast to the world.

    What the aunt was trying to say was that when we take the trials we’re facing and step back to look at them in comparison to the big picture God has for us, they become very tiny. Of course, every pain and trial is a turning point in our lives. Although our crises may seem terrible in the moment, God has the power to turn them around (just like Nicole Weider’s story about her “entering God’s light” after her deep depression).

    2. I let God light my fire. After facing severe rejection time and time again, I found myself alone and friendless. Instead of sulking or crying, I allowed God to use my pain as fuel for the fire inside me that could be a light for others. For me, that fire was writing. I spent hour upon hour reading God’s word and works of classical literature, and sat at my keyboard, typing away the hours, laying my heart on the table so that I might help other people know they weren’t alone. I would encourage you to do the same. Ask God to reveal His “fire” for your life, and then once you discover it, go for it. Use your pain to help others in similar predicaments, whether through speaking, singing, writing, drawing or ministering.

    3. I invested in my heart. Sometimes as teenagers, we become so consumed with what other people are doing or thinking of us that we forget about the true condition of our hearts. If you live in a particularly hurtful environment, you may find yourself doing things to try to numb the pain instead of truly recognizing it and seeking help (if it is a serious issue, seek parental guidance in someone you can trust). Some of the sources I have found healing for my pain include Project Inspired (of course!), the Bible and reading. After doing thorough research, I have discovered several books that have helped me in my personal healing journey. My favorite is Speak Love, which, like this article, goes into detail about how you can use the pain you are experiencing to change the world.

    Now that I’ve shared the personal steps that have helped me discover God’s purpose for my pain, I want you to go out and really pray. Pray that God will help you be a beacon of hope to other young girls and that He will help you heal your heart and mend the places where others have wounded you. Here is a prayer you can say:

    Dear Lord,

    I am feeling so sad lately, and I fear I may be going into a depression. (Person’s name here) has deeply wounded me and I am left feeling very distressed. Please help me to “take the penny out of my eye” and discover the hidden purpose you have laid in this pain. Help me to forgive my offender, and please use me as your vessel to help other girls like me to see your light in the dark. Thank you for being my shelter, Father.

    In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,

    I’ll be praying for you girls!

    Written by PI Girl Alyssa

    Do you have words of wisdom you want to share with the PI community? Submit your own article here!


    1. I just want to say, for those of you who are still grieving for a lost loved one, something that I have recently realized from my own experiences. Never let anyone tell you when to stop grieving, or when you have been grieving long enough. That is ridiculous, and they have no way of knowing how you were affected by their death. I’m not saying that you should grieve forever, that is not healthy, you do need to move on with your life eventually. But take it at your own pace, even if that means it’s one day at a time. One hour at a time. Sometimes, even one minute at a time. Just don’t get stuck, and don’t bottle everything up inside. That’s what I did, and when everything did come pouring out, it wasn’t pretty, I promise. And not just I cried a lot. There was a bit of that, but for the majority, it came out as anger, white hot, and scorching anyone who came near.

    Project Inspired

    We here at Project Inspired want to guide and inspire teen girls to be true to themselves and to God. We want to show young girls how to be people of value and confidence – how to be your own best selves – through leading a Christian life. Who are we? We're a team of girls, like you. We edit the site, we post to social media, we hang out in the chat rooms and forums. We talk with you, we listen to you, and we love you!

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