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Nothing reawakens the heart quite like the return of spring’s first daffodils, tulips, and new green. And right on time! The perfect cure for winter-weary souls as warmer temps invite us to fling off a few layers, thaw out a bit, and leave the former season behind for a brighter one ahead.

Five years ago this spring, the Journal arrived right on time, too — as our hub, or huddle, if you will. A place to connect with dreamers and wanderers, the motivated and the weary. Not your big sister’s diary – the top-secret kind with a “No boys allowed!” sticker on the cover. Nope…the Journal was launched to be an open book, filled with lessons learned from the pages of our own stories. A window into life together in the ACTS communities, here in Colorado and on the other side of the world in Uganda and Burundi. Sometimes serious, other times humorous, but always real, raw, and revealing…and we hope you’ll take a minute to read a sampling of posts from our first five years linked here for you.

Whether you’re discovering UnbridledACTS for the first time or reconnecting with us, our hope is that the Journal will spark the courage to dismantle whatever elaborate defenses you may have constructed through the years and discover the utter relief of finding yourself loved and accepted for who you are instead of the person you thought you had to pretend to be. With the support of others who have been there, things that have been unsayable before and seemed unbearable alone can become the very truths that set us free. We want you to know that we get it, and we’re in this thing together with all our hearts — whether we’re going after that slimy, slithery thing called shame; relating to a botched bang trim; sending a little wake-up call; or laughing our way through a funny girl’s account of some very painful things.

And we invite you to do the same. Because, chances are that somebody out there is in the battle your life — a battle you aren’t prepared to fight and are too embarrassed to admit. Others have been battling alone for so long, you’re running on empty, ignoring your internal warning signals. And who hasn’t settled for pitiful counterfeits or told a few convenient lies because we’d rather live a lie than admit we need anybody or anything. I’m telling you…our need for authentic connection is so primal that ignoring it, avoiding it, or denying it can leave us stranded in dangerous places if we’re not careful.

Please be careful. Mark my words. I know what I’m talking about…and I’m thankful that the Journal serves as a call to arms for all of us. Life’s battles were never meant to be waged alone, and will never be won that way. Without linking arms, there’s no way to sustain the momentum, strength, and discipline required to focus on what really matters and “stay the course” toward the life we really want.

So…please stop by again, and often. Please share the Journal with others who need a place to turn. It may be that “real, raw, and revealing” is just what they need…and right on time.

Love Julie