Managing the Chaos with Justine Ordway

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This is a podcast episode titled, Managing the Chaos with Justine Ordway. The summary for this episode is: <p>Life can be overwhelming, and as Christian women and mothers, we wear many hats, which can sometimes feel a bit... chaotic. Today's guest, Justine Ordway, is here to open up about life and all of its craziness. We dig into what can overwhelm us; careers, our children, our husbands, our friends, our home. Justine helps remind us that we are children of God first. With this in mind, we are good mothers, friends, and Christians. Listen now!</p><p><br></p><p><strong>Craving more from Going There the Podcast?</strong> Come be our friend! Make sure you’re following along on Instagram <a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">@goingtherethepodcast</a> and subscribe to our podcast so that you never miss a new episode!</p><p><br></p><p>If you love what you heard, we’d be so happy if you left us a rating and review on your podcast app. This way, more people can find us and join our fun convo!</p><p><br></p><p><a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">Check Out Justine's YouTube Channel!</a></p><p><a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">Listen to Justine's Podcast, Stewards of Grace</a></p>
Introduction to Justine
02:06 MIN
What Justine is currently overwhelmed by
02:18 MIN
When feeling out of control, how does that manifest in Justine's life
03:07 MIN
Do we identify as a disciple of Jesus?
05:43 MIN
Why Justine decided to step away from social media
03:45 MIN
"The purpose is in the pursuit of Jesus"
13:32 MIN

Samantha: Let's get real.

Christian: Who wants to have another surface level conversation?

Samantha: Not us. I'm Samantha.

Christian: And I'm Christian. Two friends having raw, but truth filled conversations about the messiness of life.

Samantha: So buckle up and don't be shy.

Christian: Because yep, we're going there.

Samantha: We're going there.

Christian: All right. Hello, Samantha. How are you today?

Samantha: Hi, I'm great. Back together, and we have a fun interview. We're having some awesome interviews this summer.

Christian: Yeah, guys. It is so fun to meet people just through this podcast and just through our community we've built here. And today we are interviewing Justine. So Justine, hello, welcome.

Samantha: Hi. Welcome to going there.

Justine: Hi. Thank you so much for having me on.

Samantha: Yeah.

Christian: Guys, we met Justine through our community of Going There online and she has a podcast herself actually. It's called Stewards of Grace. And so you guys should for sure check it out. We'll make sure to put it in our show notes so you can learn more from her and what she has to say. We have dove into some of her content. It's really awesome. But we wanted to bring her on today just to have a conversation about life and the craziness that it is. But before we even get there, why don't you start off, Justine, just telling us a little bit about you? What does life look like for you work wise, hobby wise? What does your day in day out? Tell us all of those things.

Justine: Yeah. Well, first of all, thanks again for having me on and such sweet words about the podcast. So I'm a mom of almost two. I'm currently 33 weeks pregnant. I'm due August.

Christian: Oh, I didn't even know that. No, I didn't know that.

Justine: Yep.

Samantha: So because people can't see, obviously this is a podcast we're on Zoom and we can only see like your upper half. You don't look pregnant! You're not swollen or anything!

Justine: So, I actually just had an OB appointment and she literally grabbed my ankles saying," Wow, your ankles are looking really good!"

Samantha: You're like," Yes, thank you."

Christian: Congrats! That's awesome.

Justine: Thank you. Yeah, so I have a baby boy; well, he's 20 months. And then I will be having a girl who is no name at the moment. I am married to, I like to call him my youth group sweetheart, cause we met at youth in church when I was 14.

Christian: Wait, I love that. That's cute.

Justine: I lived in small town, Kentucky. What else? So I work from home for a marketing software company and I also am a full- time mom. So I work full- time but I also am a full- time mom and I have nanny help, but it's a lot. But my passion really is to just communicate encouragement and just... Communication is something that I felt called to do, whether that be through podcasting or whether that be through writing, ut the Lord really put authorship on my heart about five years ago, which led me into podcasting, which is what led me into creating Stewards of Grace. But I'm just all about having genuine, raw, but also biblically sound conversations that point people to the gospel. So besides that, I'm in a season right now that's yes, overwhelming, because I'm a mom and I work full time, but also I've just been really blessed with great people and a great family. You guys know, being moms, now that I have a 20 month old, it's the sweetest time when my husband comes home from work, and the weekends, and just seeing friends and fellowship. And so I've just been very much savoring that family time and hanging out with people and all of that stuff. It's not something that I've gotten to enjoy a lot in my life because I've been military and I've moved around a lot. So staying in one place and stewarding relationships is something that I'm not used to. So I am daily like," Thank you so much for my friends." This is a steadfast season that I'm in.

Christian: That's a good intro. That was amazing.

Samantha: Well, and that's interesting that you say that about just kind of like relishing in like the normalcy of a schedule and of a life because, a military family... Let me clarify. Were your parents in the military or were you in the military?

Justine: My parents were in military and I was raised up in it and chose not to marry into it.

Samantha: I didn't know if maybe before you had your kids, your husband was in it and you guys had moved. But we were just with some friends in Florida and just with some friends that have a different lifestyle and they're not... They don't have like a consistent home base. And we were just talking about how it can be easy to get in our routine in like Columbia, Missouri, or like small town Kentucky and just be like, oh this is kind of a boring life. It's definitely not flashy from the world's point of view. But we were talking about how much a lot of people who don't have that just crave this life that we really have this, just genuine consistency and that faithfulness of friendships and the things you don't even realize, of the same people showing up in your life day to day. And it's made me so grateful for our little town like just the same little route I take to and from places every day. And just that familiar-. Gosh, I can't say this word. Familiarity. I can't say it. Why can't I say it? You guys know what I'm talking about. Anyways. I don't know. I love that you said that because that is a blessing that I don't think we think of a lot of times.

Justine: Yeah, no, definitely not. And I savor it all the time and I try to remind people who are burnt out on the mundane or they've never left the town... I'm like, I know I get it grass isn't always greener, so

Christian: Yeah, no, that's awesome. I love that. But yes, you are obviously busy as you work from home, parent all the time. Just being moms and working moms, we know that life. And so we want to talk about that a little bit of... Life is overwhelming and life is chaotic. What are you currently feeling overwhelmed by and how does that exemplify itself in your life right now?

Justine: Yeah, so sort of in my intro where I mentioned that I work full time from home, but I also... How that kind of came to be is I wanted to work from home. And so I sought out a job working from home and I was working from home pre- COVID, moved in with my in- law and COVID hit. I was also pregnant. And then, so I just fluidly went into continually working from home. At this point, I had given birth, and I had a long maternity leave, which was a huge blessing, but once I came back from maternity leave, we were still pretty much in the thick of COVID. So there wasn't really any way to have help with kids. And I know a lot of people can relate to just managing working from home and also having to take care of kids. I think everybody had to do that for at least a time. And so for me, when COVID sort of lifted and there wasn't that much of a stronghold, I was still working from home and I still chose to be a mom full time and take care of my son. And I was actually managing it really well because my job, while it's full time, it's very much flexible. And though it's flexible and I have sort of some freedom and leeway, I still am required to do full- time work and show up. And there's that mental capacity and also the physical part of showing up. So just a matter of both those, it started out with, oh yeah, I got this, I got this under control, this isn't that bad. And then as he got older and more mobile and more demanding and I just realized, wow... It quickly went from, I have this under control to I do not have this under control. And that turned into this long season of overwhelm. There was about a six month period of I don't have time to do anything. The day is just happening to me and I'm just reacting to the day. So in my life, in the last six months, overwhelm has manifested itself in a way that's circumstantially uncontrollable, but I've been trying to like grasp onto some sort of control. And so it's manifested itself in mainly exhaustion, just desperate for help, having to accept help when I don't feel like I want it or need it. So that's kind of where this overwhelm has come from in this season that I'm in.

Christian: Gosh, if you guys can't relate to that... I so relate to that, so I hope other people do too. That makes me feel better. But yeah, all of us grasping for control, if that is in our marriages, our relationships, our situations that we're in, if that's in our parenting or our work-

Samantha: Keeping a clean house.

Christian: Yeah, all of those things that is so relatable to just what you're describing there of a season of just wanting control so badly and not feeling like you have it. I mean, AKA 2020.

Samantha: Yeah. Seriously. Whenever you're feeling out of control and you say you grasp back control, how do you see that manifest in your life? Whether that's physically... Like I was just saying, I've talked about this before, I freak out about every little thing about my house being perfect. And I usually can dig down deep in that and see that there's something else. Or maybe it's your schedule or, like you were saying with relationships, maybe you're trying to be controlling of your spouse or friendships. How do you see that play out? Whether that's physically, emotionally, mentally; what's that look like?

Justine: Yeah, that's a really good question because I call myself a control freak that's in... Control freak is my default. And because of that, the Lord has been slowly peeling back layers of that posture in me. And it's funny looking back hindsight of the last seasons that I've been in and pretty much every season that I've been in, that's been difficult and challenging and stressful has been an aspect of circumstances that are just completely out of my control that I don't like, and I don't want to be in, but I'm having to work through it. And so what ends up happening for me is I recognize that the situation is completely out of my control. It's a situation that I don't like to be in. I want to change the circumstance. And so in trying to grasp control, I end up trying to make the situation go away. Or I try... Like you were talking about with keeping a clean house, hat I try to do is grasp onto things that I'm like, I know these are the things that I can control relatively. I can control having a clean house. I can control somewhat what food I eat, or if I'm waking up at a decent time, or going to bed at a decent time, or all of these things. And for a while there, not to say that those things aren't bad or that we shouldn't steward that time well, but what happened was, is I was trying to control everything that I could first and foremost before I A) surrendered, any of that to the Lord and B) recognized that, trying to create some sort of order or peace in my life, whether it be through a clean house, whether it be through clean hair, like showering, isn't going to one, make my situation go away, but two make my relationship with the Lord any better. So I had it in my head that, yes, my circumstances are crazy and everything's chaotic and out of control. But if I could just control these areas, if I could just clean up these areas, if I could just clean off my desk before I read my Bible. I always tried to make sure that I had everything in order before I approached the throne of grace. And that's when I realized, whoa, I've got this all backwards because yeah, it's chaotic and yeah, it's out of control, and to an extent we should be creating this like orderly peaceful environments. But, sometimes, you just can't. Sometimes your environments and your circumstances are completely out of your control and they're chaotic and they're crazy. And you have a toddler that's crying and screaming. And what the Lord has been teaching me, especially in the last four years is that I am peace. You can reach deep down and you can find peace in the midst of your chaos. You don't have to try and create peace in your environment in order to have peace. And so I realized that it was this backwards kind of approach that I was having and trying to find and create order and peace before I sat the Lord, and it was like, no, seek me, seek me above all else, and you're going to find joy and you're going to find peace within those circumstances. You don't have to try and rid yourself of those circumstances.

Christian: Yeah. I love everything you just said. I think that's so good as we just go through about a regular day, the number of times that I can point out that I'm like, oh gosh, I, once again, am trying to kind of like fit all of these things or plans or expectations into what I think they should be, that I need to present myself in this put together way and no one can see me in that mess. Or certainly, God, can't see me in that mess. I need to have a pretty, quiet time. I need to have my coffee, that's piping hot, sitting next to my cute little succulent plant in my perfectly lit chair. I'm thinking of all these things that I'm just like, gosh, don't we always do that with so many things in our life before just understanding, no, He already made us that way. We are actually already called to Him and in a relationship with Him. It makes me think of Ephesians and what He as His people call us into anyways. And that He already names us all of those things, that we are what He is because He made us that way. And He is already in us, that... What beautiful things. Reminders every day that I need to like act in that truth.

Samantha: And it's interesting too, because we do this thing where we think when our world is out of control in a lot of big ways that we can balance that out with all the control that we have in the small ways. And I heard you say that life was feeling so of control, and so we think we can counteract that by a clean, perfect desk. I'm the same way. Or even as the way we control time, like talking about a quiet time. It's like, oh, well now I woke up late and I know my daughter might be up in the next 10 minutes, so I'm just not even going to go there because it just doesn't look like the way I wanted it to. Where we do those weird things in our head, and it's so weird, but I think, I don't know. We've talked about this in episodes before, I can use control as kind of a red flag meter in my life to see, okay Samantha, calm down, there's something deeper going on that you're not addressing. So I love that you said that about controlling those little things is not going to like grow your relationship with God, but it's when we dig into that and say like, okay, again, is it wrong to want to have a clean, organized desk or to have order and structure for our families and to create like better functioning homes? Absolutely not. But with most things in our lives, it's more about the motive behind why we're doing those things.

Christian: And attention between how and why we hold both of those things. So let us ask you... How have you fought against that? Obviously our life and just the culture that we live in promotes this, like you're saying, you probably feel pressure of I should be the mom who can work from home full time and be a mom full time, and that should be no problem. And I should be able to balance all these things. I should be able to hang out with our friends and do that perfectly and have a great marriage and go on date nights with my husband. How do you manage all of those things while also balancing, but God's also called me to steward these things. What does that look like for you?

Justine: Yeah, I think the big question is it ultimately comes down to our identity and this is something that I've been really convicted of recently. And the question, this can be for all Christians, but it's: do we identify as a disciple of Jesus? Do we identify as a born again Christian? Are we children of God? Is that how we identify? And if so, we have to remember the gospel story that we've literally gone from death to life. And I remember when I was baptized, they said," Buried with Christ and baptism raised to walk a newness of life." And second Corinthians 5: 17, it says," Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The oldest gone, the newest come." And so when we have clarity on who we are because of whose we are and what He has done, and we're reminded of the gospel and the cross and all of that, on a day to day basis, I think that clarity and that vision and that identity really settles us and it humbles us. And it also sets us on the right path. That posture is going to flow out from us in the way that we act, in the way that we think and the way that we mold our lives. And so, yes, it's very easy and tempting to fall into whatever the culture's doing or we're hustling to achieve, or even just simply as a mom and as a homemaker or as a wife or whatever, trying to create some sort of beauty or order in our environment, whatever it may be; I think if the number one thing in any goal, whether it be the goal of the day or the goal of the moment, if it's, I need to create... Let's use the example of having the nice desk clean before we start our quiet time. Like you mentioned, it all comes down to the motive. And so for me, if I can constantly remind myself of the starting place of who I am and my identity, it kind of sets the tone for even just sitting down to approach the Lord and my quiet time. It's like this constant reminder of, okay, none of that matters. Yes, it would be nice. And yes, it would be cool and helpful and Instagram worthy, but it's not necessary. And ultimately it's temporary and it's an illusion to an extent. And so I have really learned in the last six months to a year that I would always focus on this sort of superficial external appearance of looking like things were put together while also knowing deep down that my relationship with the Lord was being neglected. And I was like, I got to flip these. I really need to make sure that I am seeking the Lord wholeheartedly and putting Him first in number one in every aspect of my life, regardless of if my house is clean, regardless of if my laundry has been done. And that's been really hard because there's this thing that... Especially when I used to be on social media, but, I need to have a clean house. I need to have my laundry done. I need to have, or I should, or I want to have a nice, beautiful home for my family. And those are all great, wonderful things that we should strive for, but not at the extent of neglecting the Lord and our relationship with Him. So I would say that just really settling into our identity and reminding ourselves of who we are because of whose we are and what Christ has done.

Samantha: I think it's interesting to talking about putting this fake kind of front on with that. It's like, that really can only last us so long. And we know that. And what's interesting is, going back to this control thing, really when we're acting that way, and we're piecing everything together to look a certain way, even though we know behind closed doors, whether it's emotionally inside of us spiritually, our relationship with God, or physically within closed doors. You think about the closet where everything's just crammed in, but you're welcoming everyone into a perfectly clean living room that they didn't see that you just shoved everything into. We know that, that's not actually drawing people into us, and then ultimately, hopefully to Christ because it's phony. There's something about a person that you can sense. Most people can have a little bit of that intuition to be like, there's something off about you; you're not putting your most genuine self forward. And so we can think that, okay, we've got it all under control, I'll just act this way and no one will know, but really people are kind of... We all know those people that are very controlling and, you really want to distance yourself from them. So it doesn't invite anyone in because they're like, well, shoot, if you're like that, and that is true, well, you're not going to want my mess, you don't want to know who I am. And it's the exact opposite of how God views us. And that's what you're saying, like coming to him in that mess, it also extends to other people. We want people to feel comfortable coming to us with their mess as well.

Christian: Yeah. I think that's what's so interesting about control is how it can manifest itself in such an idea in our mind when I'm like, I wouldn't want that for anyone else. I wouldn't want my friends to fake how put together their life is, or I wouldn't want my friends to tell me that they had this picture perfect day with their kids, when my kid was screaming. I don't know why we act like that, we want that for ourselves, when I'm like, no, I wouldn't hope that for anyone. And even... I loved what you said about the identities, because I just think at the end of the day, yes, our life looks different when we can live out of first, our identity of being a child of God and a disciple for him, and I think so quickly, we say no, I think I make daily decisions and I'm like, no, but I want to be a better wife or I want to be a better mom, or I want to be a better employee, rather than saying like, no, I want to be the best disciple of Jesus I can be first. And then out of that is going to flow being a wife and being a mom and being an employee. And I just think that's so interesting how quickly and how fast we will flip that. For me, it's daily and I need to be reminded daily. And I'm thankful that He's invited me into a relationship that I can have that intimacy with Him daily.

Samantha: Sometimes hourly. Wait, you said something and you might not want to share this, but you mentioned not being on social media, was that an intentional decision? Were you really active on social media and then did you intentionally leave? Tell me about that if you're willing.

Justine: Yeah, 100%. It's a topic I enjoy talking about because it's something that's definitely influenced me a lot. So a year ago now it's been, I quit social media entirely because it was managing me, I wasn't managing it. And it had been something that I'd thought about for a long time. And what's odd is, or not odd, but interesting, is social media came about... I don't know how old... I'm not going to ask how old you guys are.

Samantha: We'll tell you. We talk about it.

Christian: We're 30.

Samantha: She just turned 30. No. I'm 28.

Christian: I'm sorry.

Samantha: Just turned 28 this month. Let me get my last two years.

Christian: I'm sorry.

Samantha: Thank you.

Justine: I turn 27 in a month and so social media, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, all that stuff-

Christian: Snapchat, I hate Snapchat.

Justine: Me too. I haven't had it in a really long time.

Samantha: If you're an adult, our age that has Snapchat, please don't. Delete it. I don't get it.

Christian: Are you judging people right now, Samantha?

Samantha: Yeah, I have some friends and you know who you are.

Christian: That's rude.

Justine: Well, my cousin, I watch her Snapchat and I just cringe.

Christian: I don't get Snapchat though. Kids these days, guys, send Snapchats-

Justine: At the corner of their face.

Christian: Yeah.

Samantha: Or the baseboard, and they just use it to text. I'm like, just text. Okay. Sorry.

Christian: Yeah, it's confusing, guys. We're all confused. We're too old.

Justine: For sure. The whole realm of social media being a prevalent thing picked up in a very-

Christian: Influential time for you?

Justine: Exactly, and because of that, and because of my personality, I just grasped onto it so tightly. I was like, heck yeah, this is my thing. And I went down a huge long rabbit hole with it in college and it just kind of.. Anyways, long story short, I realized this is really unhealthy. I don't like what it does to me. And I don't like what it's doing subconsciously in my brain. And I know this is not like this for everyone. Cause I've had conversations with friends who do such a good job of using it in a way that is healthy. I just could never figure that out. And I also would take long breaks and I would come back and then just, I would fall right into the same patterns. And eventually I just realized, I don't think this is for me. And so I went through the whole process that anybody would go through, do I say bye to this forever? Or what? And I finally came with the conclusion that, yeah, I'm okay with living without it. I'm not going to say forever, because I don't want to say never, but I've had without it for a year. And it has definitely been very transformative and I've learned a lot, but I also have a really good perspective on it as an outsider looking in. Because I think that it's an amazing platform and the people that do steward it well do great things. And I'm like, man, I wish I had that sort of willpower, but I just don't.

Christian: I love your self awareness of that.

Samantha: I do too!

Christian: That's amazing.

Samantha: And the reason I ask that is because this topic we're talking about of the control and fighting against this culture, like busyness and hustle. You mentioned when you see that on Instagram, I just think... I wanted to touch on that because we can't act like these things are so separate. We've done separate episodes on our podcast about social media, but it is so true. It inundates so many aspects of our life. And so to act like it wouldn't affect the way that we feel we can control. When I'm going through something hard, I go on social media to numb out. That's a way I'm controlling instead of dealing with the hard thing, I'm controlling what I have to think about or what I don't have to think about. And so I love that you're humble about that and just shared that, because I'm getting ready... I haven't even told you this yet. I'm going off for the month of July. And, again yeah, it's so freeing, but I also love that you say people can use it in a really healthy way. And, I don't know, I just like your thoughts on it.

Justine: I appreciate that. Yeah. It has taken a while to get to that place though. I think at first I was very biased and I was like, it's the worst thing ever, but now that I've been off it for a while and I've had conversations with people, I'm like, it's the worst thing ever for me and that's period, but not everybody else, and God uses it.

Christian: That's good. I like that a lot. Well, so going back, I want to ask you again, kind of at another personal question, but what does your quiet time look like? You've shared these struggles of wanting control in this way, but how do you actively... like, tangible ways? How do you fight against that in your life of us recognizing our life is probably always going to be chaotic. We are probably always going to say, wow, life feels really crazy right now. Maybe we'll have days and moments that feel less, but we're all recognizing this life feels really hurried and rushed and hard, and I just want to grasp for control. How do you fight against that with your quiet time? Or just with other things? What do you tangibly do every day to fight against that control that you want?

Justine: Yeah. And I love this question because on my podcast I always ask this. For me, I'm really big on, yes, we can talk about the spiritual all day, we can talk about the theological or even the theoretical, but once we get down to the nitty gritty, the tangible, how are we going to put it into practice? That can be hard to take something from your head to your heart, to your hands. And so for me, there's two things that really come to mind and I've struggled with this for a while. So if you're listening and you're like, I want to learn more about this, I've gone into it in depth on my YouTube channel and on the podcast. But I realized that I had sort of a perfectionistic view towards my quiet time, but not only my quiet time, just spiritual disciplines in general. And basically it was this idea of, I was more focused on the process. I was more focused on the routine. I was more focused on what it looked like externally as opposed to my heart posture and what I was actually trying to get out of it and the whole purpose of it in general. And ultimately I realized, Justine, the purpose is not in the process, the purpose is in the pursuit of Jesus. Period. End of story. And when I realized that, and that was something that the Lord obviously revealed to me, but it was like this aha moment of gosh, you are being so perfectionistic and orderly and logistical and all the things that I am, cause that's how my brain works, and that's how I am... I realized, gosh, I'm over complicating this so much. And it does come down to this control of trying to create some sort of order in a life that maybe isn't. And so it manifests itself in my quiet time or other spiritual disciplines, but now, and I'm so grateful for this because it's a huge answer to prayer, but now I just have so much grace, so much joy and so much just relaxation with how I approach God's word of my quiet time. So from a tangible, practical perspective, not a morning person. When I was kind of looking at my day, I came to the realization that pretty much the only time that I have to be alone with the Lord, even if it's just for 15 minutes is before my son wakes up. So long story short, I realized, you know what, even if it means that I wake up 15 minutes before he does because, now I know that kids are random and he's random, but I kind of figured his schedule is pretty much between 6: 15 and 7: 15AM. The earliest he'll wake up on a day is between 6- 6: 15AM. So for me it was like, okay, and my husband's home, he doesn't leave till 6: 45AM. And I told myself, I'm not going to be unrealistic. I'm not going to do anything crazy. I don't care about the routine. I just want to have the intention of getting up and setting my intention to be with the Lord and also surrendering the day to Him. And so I just was like, I'm not a morning person, but I can get up 15 minutes before I see my son. And so I committed to that. I used to really do a bunch of overcomplicated things. And now it's just as long as I can get into God's word, and as long as I can just have a conversation with Him and let Him know that like, hey, I recognize you and I love you, and the day is yours, then I'm good. It doesn't need to be this hour long study. And so I would recommend for everybody to not over complicate those sort of things because ultimately it comes down to just our heart. And the one other thing that I would mention from a practical perspective is read the book With by Skye Jethani. I just finished it. It's life changing. Basically he talks about these five postures and how we can relate to God. There's over, from, for, under, and then with. Just a quick synopsis: People who live with a relationship over God, it's basically, I don't need God, but I'll use His principles to direct my life. From God is more, this sort of health and wealth prosperity, I want to get things from Him, so I'm going to continue to go to church kind of thing. Under God is I'm going to serve Him so that bad things don't happen to me. And for God is kind of putting the mission of Christianity above our actual relationship with God. I'm going to do things for him. I'm going to have a significant life. And those are all great things and they're all true, a lot of them can be true. But what He really desires is just with. He desires us to have a relationship with Him and for us to know Him intimately. It was life changing for me because it was like He just wants us consistently to pursue him and just not neglect the holy spirit and remind ourselves that we have that helper with us constantly, 24/7. And so I would say that trying to compartmentalize or fit certain times or think about your spiritual disciplines in a way of like, I need to do it at this time. If you're in a season of chaos or craziness or you're a mom and you're busy, just be mindful of the Lord throughout your day, look for pockets of prayer, worship when you can, wake up five minutes before your kid and do a devotional, like the new morning versus devotional. And lastly, I would say, just be mindful of guarding your heart. Be mindful of the content you consume. Maybe replace entertaining things with more edifying things, maybe read more Christian books or... You know what I'm saying? I think for me, I just have to practically replace some of the worldly stuff with edifying things. Otherwise, I just become so inundated with lies and those are hard to replace. So, that's what I would say.

Christian: That was so good.

Samantha: I'm so touched by the way that you described the simplicity of time with God and you've said it so sweetly. It was so sweet to me in the way of the character of Jesus, of that's what He wants; that is His nature of just meeting with us. And I think it's cool because there are so many seasons that we will have throughout our life where we can have really cool maybe inductive times of studying the Bible and really spending big chunks of time, whether we're empty nesters or our kids are older, whatever that looks like... But just the way you talked about meeting with Him, just so genuinely and sweetly. I don't know. That just touched me. And thinking through too, there's a lot of really cool Christian women in our culture that have Instagrams or ministries that just are wanting to reach women with time with God and they promote this constant, having your Bible out constantly. Those are things too that can be helpful or, here's how to memorize scripture with your children. And sometimes I look at that and I'm like, whoa, that is so cool. And it is so purposeful. But maybe it also doesn't have to look that intentional as well. Maybe it is just that morning time where you, like you said, devoting your day to Him. I don't know what you have to say about that Christian, but I'm like, that's so simple!

Christian: I think it's so good. I will have to admit part of it makes me uncomfortable even as we talk about it, because I'm such a planner, I'm such a goal oriented person that I love the idea of like, no, I am going to create this really awesome space that I love and I crave to get to. And I'm going to work out this plan with my husband that you were saying... And so I'm even fighting, as I say these words, I'm fighting against this idea of, no, I do want it to look perfect though. I do want it to be controlled. But I think it comes back to that balance of there are probably going to be seasons that it is really good for us to put some practical things in place that we are like, hey, I'm going to create this really awesome space that I love. I'm going to set the timer on my coffee thing because, whatever, or I'm going to... I don't know. There's so many practical things we've talked through. But I just love your desire for getting to know Jesus. Samantha and I are so passionate about people being in God's word, just consistently and showing up. And I think I want to read that book you recommended, cause that sounds amazing. But I'm like, yeah, it just means showing up. And I love what you even said of like, I'm not a morning person, but I recognize if I don't give Him the credit, the first thing in the morning, then like it's not going to happen. And ultimately the credit's probably not going to go to Him in your heart and mind and through your hands that day, the credit's going to go to you and you're going to try to control. And so I just, again, I'm like, so in awe of your self awareness of that, and I think it's a way that... Yeah, you said that yourself, God is just so sweetly reminding you of that of like, no, no, no, give me control first and let me do the rest, and your day will be a lot better, which I just think is so beautiful and ultimately how we can all strive to just be like, thank you, spend time with Him. That's really awesome.

Justine: Thank you. Well, and it's literally all Him working through me because I can literally say six months to a year ago, how different I would have been in that arena. And so I've learned a ton, specifically on that topic, and I feel like I've just been an onion and He has just been peeling me back layer by layer, especially in that area of perfectionism and discipline and all of that stuff. I think we all have different personalities and it sounds like you're ambitious, I'm really ambitious and-

Samantha: Are you into enneagram? It's okay if you're not. Do you know-

Justine: I would say I'm a seven, eight, not seven... Wait. Eight or eight wing seven. I think I'm seven slash eight, but mainly eight slash... I don't know.

Samantha: Okay, okay.

Justine: I'm not as flirty and fluffy and free as a seven, but I also desire to be fulfilled and content, so yeah.

Samantha: Interesting.

Justine: What are you all?

Samantha: I'm a one.

Christian: I'm a three.

Samantha: With what you said, I'm like, oh, maybe you're a one, but I love that. Anyways, continue what you were saying, but yes, you're right. Like we are built differently and certain things will work better for certain people.

Christian: But I think that's the part I love so much about what you're saying though, is you're like, I think it's so cool how God designs us individually and for a purpose in those individual designs. And I just think it's really cool that you have come to Him and said like, Lord, I know that you made me this way, you made it, and you knew that this was going to be hard for me, but I want to lean into that, I want to trust that you have a plan for why you created me this way, because sometimes I get so sick of, and I'm doing it myself guys, but I get so sick when we make excuses like, well, that's just not my personality or I'm not a morning person, or that's just really hard for me. Or when people desire community, but they're like, eh, it's uncomfortable. And, yeah, none of this is meant to be easy. None of it's going to be easy. None of it's going to be simple and we're going to have to put in the work. And I just love that. You're saying like, I've done the work. I know this is so far from my personality, but ultimately I'm a child of God first and ultimately I'm a disciple for him first. And that means I have to make sacrifices for my day to look like that and be serving Him. And that's what I think I just love so much about what you're saying.

Justine: Well, and also as the sacrifices come in sort of letting go of this ideal. I was so big on this ideal, whether it was the... And I think it does stem from being on social media, but, even off social media, there's this tendency to create this ideal in whatever aspect of our lives, because we yearn for good. We want something to be like you were saying, I want to be a good wife, I want to be a good mom. So we have these ideals in our head, but when we paint these ideals in our head, I think what I do is I start chasing after ideal. I start chasing after this vision of my life of how it could be. And then what quickly happens because I'm a sinner is I'm like, all right, cool, I can make that happen. I'll just Pinterest it. And I'll flippin' make it happen. I can make my house look nice, but what happened and what I realized over and over, time and time again, was it really was, one, it was all an illusion and two, I failed so many times over. And at the end of the day, I was like, okay, well cool, my dishes are done, but have I even spent time in God's word today? No. And so therefore I'm kind of still empty. And once I had that revelation, I kind of, it was cold turkey of, okay, I'm going to stop. I'm so over these ideals, I'm so tired of trying to look a certain way and trying to... Even with nobody looking. I'm in my house all day long. Nobody sees me, but I was trying. And this is another thing I wanted to mention is a lot of people will say, especially in the church, come as you are, you're accepted and loved, and we will meet you where you are and you don't have to be a perfect person with no sin in order to approach God's throne of grace. As Christians, especially those of us who've been Christian for a long time, we're like, yeah, duh, but what we don't realize is we do do it in small areas of our life all the time throughout the day with, okay God, I know you're first, but can I just... I would be so much more clearheaded if I would just do these things first, if I would just check off my to- do list, if I would just do this, this and this, and then it grows and grows and grows. And we realize what we're doing is ultimately saying, I will come to you when, if blah, blah, blah is done, or this circumstances is this way. And I've just realized... And when I was emailing you is I've just realized, gosh, life is crazy and circumstances are so uncontrollable and now I'm going to be a mom of two. This life's never going to slow down, to an extent. There's going to be seasons of stress and overwhelming chaos all the rest of my days. And so if I keep waiting for this moment, it's never going to come. And so I need to just throw that out the window and just kind of settle in to this discomfort of having not everything exterior put together or even technically in my brain put together. But if I could get this one thing down, if I could get this desire, the Lord above all else, down, maybe then other things will flow from that. And we'll take that day by day, but not going to try and put the pieces of the puzzle together by myself.

Samantha: Yeah. I love the way that you've processed that, and just so appreciative of you sharing all that, because it's kind of an insight on how God has been working in your heart. And I think so many people relate to that. So I really appreciate you sharing all of it.

Christian: That is so good. I hope all of us take a little bit of that and start applying it. It has encouraged me that I'm like, yes, we can get up and we can do that. And we can do the work to dive into just knowing our sin, knowing our patterns of sin and then combating that and really, truly having a heart to desire, to know our creator more. And that's just really awesome. Thanks for sharing all of that.

Samantha: Okay. A question we've been asking a lot of our summer interview friends is what's something on your summer bucket list that you've either already done or that you're going to be doing this summer or that you're like, okay, I probably won't get to actually do that, but it'd be cool to dream. What's something?

Justine: Let's see if I can have the nursery done before my daughter arrives.

Samantha: Love that.

Christian: There you go. Yeah. And maybe have a name picked. Are you guys people who wait to have a name or no?

Justine: No, Lord no. Oh my gosh. How do people do that? I can't. I'm a planner at heart. I would say maybe a name would be nice or like a nursery done, or anything, but here I am 33 weeks pregnant, and first of all, my husband has not given me any help. I love him, but, he's shrugging the shoulders, you know?

Christian: He's like, I don't know what we should do.

Samantha: We'll get to it, yeah.

Justine: Yeah. And then with the nursery, the truck is what we would be able to pick furniture up with. We've been doing things on Facebook marketplace, but his truck is in the shop, so that's kind of been an excuse. But currently our nursery is full of donated items and then random things. And so definitely I would like to have that put together, maybe a name, and then just a week of peace of mind to be like, okay, I'm ready, because right now the way that we're going I'm... Oh gosh, my entire maternity leave is going to be spent putting a nursery together and coming up with our name or something.

Christian: Yeah. You have a few more weeks. I don't know. Your son's probably not old enough to chime in with his thoughts, but.

Justine: Well, he's in the process of learning words and it's adorable. Today I was making him barbecue meatballs and I didn't even ask him to say the word, but he was like, baba- da baba- da. And I was like, are you saying barbecue? It's so cute.

Christian: That's so cute.

Samantha: I was going to say, we did ask my daughter because she's four, what we should name this baby because we had three weeks notice and we had no boy name and she... So I'm like, you can do it, girl, you can do it. I got to nursery together real fast.

Christian: You can do it.

Samantha: Sometimes though, when you know you only have that amount of time, you just do it all. But anyways, she was really dead set... Out of the blue, she was like, Gus Gus from Cinderella, which she's only seen Cinderella maybe once. And she was so dead set on the name, Gus Gus for this little baby. And so now it's kind of a funny, cute nickname. And I've decided we have to go as him as the little mouse, Gus Gus, for Halloween and her as Cinderella, the rest of us, whatever else. That's so funny that she just was wanted to contribute so, so bad. And all she could think of was Gus Gus. But anyways, I am excited for you guys and growing your family and we will be sure to link your YouTube page and your podcast. Definitely not your social media since it's not there, but we'll link all of that so people can find you and connect with you. And we just appreciate you reaching out to us. And also just all that you're doing to... You kind of gave a description of our goal with going there of having these raw and biblically based conversations and how those two mesh, so we're passionate about that and we're glad you are too!

Christian: Yeah. Thanks for sharing all of your wisdom. It was awesome to hear from you.

Justine: Oh thank you. Well, thank you so much for having me on and for chatting. This has been amazing. And I already feel like we're friends.

Christian: Yes. Yes. It's the best.

Samantha: Hey, thanks for going there with us.

Christian: If you loved what you heard, don't forget to follow along with us at Going There, the podcast.

Samantha: And it would also mean so much to us if you subscribe to our podcast and shared it with a friend.

Christian: Talk to you soon!


Life can be overwhelming, and as Christian women and mothers, we wear many hats, which can sometimes feel a bit... chaotic. Today's guest, Justine Ordway, is here to open up about life and all of its craziness. We dig into what can overwhelm us; careers, our children, our husbands, our friends, our home. Justine helps remind us that we are children of God first. With this in mind, we are good mothers, friends, and Christians. Listen now!

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Today's Host

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Samantha Miller

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Christian Neuenswander


Today's Guests

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Justine Ordway