About the Author

Lysa TerKeurst is a New York Times bestselling author and speaker who helps everyday women live an adventure of faith through following Jesus Christ. As president of Proverbs 31 Ministries, Lysa has lead thousands over the past 15 years to help make their walk with God an invigorating journey. Not...

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  1. This helps very much, thank you Lysa!

    Unfortunately, I was needing this advice today. For the first time ever, I received two of “those” e-mails within just days of each other. One from someone in the family and another from a family friend. All week long, i’ve been torn up inside about what these ladies said to me and what I should do about it.

    My first reaction was to respond right away and explain the situation since they are only getting one side of the story. I felt like I needed to defend and justify myself. Then I wanted to ask them to get the log out of their own eye before trying to help me with problems between me and the other person. I wanted to tell them to mind their own business since they don’t know all the facts and those that they do know have been twisted to gain pity.

    Thankfully, my husband was there to comfort me while I cried and calm me down before I e-mailed them back and said anything I would regret. All along, I’ve wanted to take the high road and do what I can to live in peace with everyone, but the flesh inside of me was fighting the injustice. Since I got the e-mails, i’ve been struggling with whether or not to respond at all. I feel like with the family friend, it might be best that I just ignore it and let it go. My dilemma lies with the family member who I will have to see over and over again. I want to maintain a good relationship with them, but I also want them to know the truth and apologize for their judgment/criticism of me.

    It’s something i’ll have to continue to pray about I guess. But your suggestions are very helpful! And it feels comforting to know that there are others who are perceived in the wrong way and deal with hateful, judgmental e-mails too. I’m very sorry that you received that e-mail because I love your book and it’s helped me in my struggle with food tremendously! Your message is definitely important and something that God wants shared with other women. Thank you for writing it and don’t take that person’s words to heart!

  2. Thank you, Lysa, for this. Just last night I had to deal with an angry parent confrontation and came home to an email (different situation!!). Very timely advice. The worst part about the first situation is that they are clearly in the wrong, but simply don’t care. I was just one of the many unfortunate receivers. 🙁 This is something just best left alone for God to handle and through prayer. The most amazing news….after the angry confrontation….an entire group of children came to Christ!! I think the confrontation was just some spiritual warfare because there were some hearts ready to receive Christ. I still stand amazed this morning of what God did!! He is so awesome!! Thanks again, Lysa, your post was such a timely need in my life!!! God bless you and your ministry!!!

  3. PERFECT TIMING!!!
    My co-worker (who isn’t treated very nice by our bosses) called me last night in tears. She had received an email scolding her for a task they felt she hadn’t appropriately taken care of.
    She has so many other things on her plate that it’s nearly impossible for her to do it all, let alone that thing she’s now in trouble over.
    She begged me to help her RESPOND to the email.

    I’ve tossed and turned all night…..praying about how to handle it!
    I’m psyched that now I can help her do this WITH LOVE!!
    Thanks!

    • I went through a similar situation as your co-worker. It was a very difficult time, I kept going back to Galatians 5:16-26. During that time I also relized that some of my stress was that I was not communicating that I had to much on my plate.

  4. Thanks for the advice, there is a great need for this overall. I believe humility is very dificult when we believe we are wronged, thanks for the refreshing perspective.

  5. I have not read your book ‘Made to Crave’, not because I am against it all. Just because our resources have not provided for it at this time. But I had to write in response to the beginning email…
    I beleive it is our DUTY as christians to care for our ‘earthly vessel’ in a God pleasing way, and this includes what we put into our bodies. There is more to being responsible in this way than just following the ‘worlds’ fettishes of this.
    I believe we are to line up with the way God intended us to eat and provide our bodies with the nutrition it requires. This will free us from any and all eating hang-ups and difficulties, and as we are healthy and vibrant, we are able to fulfill what god has called us each to do!
    To say we shouldn’t be concerned of this is just irresponsible. It is our God-given duty to care for God’s ‘temple’.

    • Although I haven’t read Made to Crave yet either (i can’t decide to read it on Kindle or buy the book!), I totally agree with Tina. It is our duty to care for the bodies He puts us in!

  6. I believe *these* emails are for such purpose, too. Yes, even these! They test us to check our pride and affirm that we should love–always. Such good reminders.

  7. Thank you for this. I just received such an email from, of all people, my brother. I was amazed at how difficult it was to not send an instant reaction of hurt and anger…especially since I know that the email came out of his hurt in just losing his wife. Why is it so difficult for me to respond with grace even when I DO know why the other person is lashing out? By the grace of God, I restrained my first instinct and was able to respond with love instead of hurt, with forgiveness rather than retaliation. Thank You, God!

  8. I haven’t gotten to read your book, but I know that there is a big difference between being healthy and being the shape/ size the world says you should be. From what I have read of your blogs I would wager that you were encouraging us to take care of our bodies. That is a very good things because our bodies are gifts that we should take care of, so good for you and you just keep on encouraging people to do good things.

    Have a great day,
    Miss Riss

  9. I also have been on the receiving end of a hurtful email and text. I have found that sometimes people put things in email or text form that really should be done in person. However I totally agree that if you are going to send an email be gentle, honoring or just read Galatians 5:16-26 (the fruit of the spirit) before you write and way before you hit send.

    Tracy

  10. Thank you so much for this post! I spoke to our church’s youth group just this past weekend about dealing with conflict from a biblical perspective providing these same thoughts, in addition to some others. Then I found myself having to deal with them in my own office a mere day later. I have been dealing with the whole situation balancing grace while also not allowing myself to be run over.

    What a confirmation of the message and a source of encouragement you have been, thank you!

  11. I have been looking forward to reading Made To Crave very soon! As one who struggles with craving the right things and the right One, I appreciate people writing and encouraging me through it. Thank you!

  12. You read that particular email out loud at She Speaks this year (or one very like it) and I felt a strong defensive reaction on your behalf. Then you said this, “Welcome to ministry.” It struck me forcefully at the time and I am reminded of it again. My husband and I have come under attack often for living out our mission as a family and he always reminds me “When you want to build something great, it will be attacked by the world and by the Enemy.” O how difficult it is to live graciously and wisely under undeserved condemnation! You are an example of that – mission trumps personal justice, and a mission that threatens the enemy breeds attack somewhere along the way. You are a godly lady and a devoted leader – may God continue to give you a courageous and gracious voice, Lysa. Thank you for your encouragement and insight.

  13. I have to say that the world is full of people of all types and it is okay to have naysayers. The bad emails and such are a part of life. No always do they apply to the situation at hand. Also, emails can be mis interpreted. Why, well the value of a personal message on the phone and the tone is just more valuable. Always be Encouraged and know that others care about you and what you have to offer the world. It is those of you who give advice like this that helps others. Helping others is the mantra of life. Great post!!

  14. Dear Lysa,

    I read “Made to Crave” in July, and the truth of your words resonated with me. It was a timely message, wrapped in grace. Thank you for your faithfulness to write that book.

    Denise J. Hughes

  15. I have your book, and have read parts of it. II don’t have much time to read, so I do 1 book at a time….slowly. I am not trying to lose weight, just be healthy. I’ve read Free to be Thin, Manna from Heaven…I truly believe that nourishing our bodies so that we maintain our health is a good part of worshipping our Lord. If we don’t have the energy to do what we were made to do, the first change should come from what we put into our bodies. Just my opinion :0) Anyway, thank you for this post. I don’t get lots of e-mails, but I do have a sister who litterally will.not.talk. to me. I watch her kids 5 days a week,and she texts everything to me. Sometimes some very rude, harsh comments. Sometimes careless comments or requests (example: since I have nothing to do, can I…..) while I am watching her 2 kids, my 2 year old, and my 1 year old. I always freeze up, because my first instinct is to become defensive and respond with a snarky comment back. My next idea is always to make a list of what I do in a day, so that hopefully she can appreciate the time and energy I put into both her kids and my own. I’m not sure how to word a response via texts, because I usually have a lot of words in my head, but the basic outline you provided is great. I will just have to remember honor, grace and love. The same can be true when having a “discussion” with a spouse too, although that will take a little more though to keep your outline :0)