Midweek Push: Believest Thou Are Comforted

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


For the Month of March, we’re embarking on a Midweek Push Interview Series and we’re taking a look at comfort in God during our seasons of grief and loss. Today, we’re discussing comfort on the couch with Kathryn Fredricks.


Kathryn is a woman thirsty for the love of God. She believes in new beginnings as she has experienced God’s continuous refreshing. She is a middle school basketball coach in Missouri, where she mentors and encourages young girls on a daily basis.

Kathryn enjoys sharing the grace of God, praise and worship, helping others enjoy a liberated life, reading, cycling, and spending time with her husband and son.

Kathryn hopes that her past will encourage other women and young girls to experience the beauty of the Father’s love, to know oneself, and to live worthily.

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SWAP: How have you experienced loss or grief? 

Kathryn: I have experienced grief. I was once ashamed to share it because I didn’t think people would view what I went through as grief. I fought hard dealing with this form of loss and trying to find peace with who I was. I remember it like it was yesterday. I married my high school sweetie at the age of 22. He was a super popular football player, the life of the party, and he was very handsome. I played basketball, but wasn’t as popular as he was. It was still surprising that out of all the ladies he could have chosen, he chose me. My parents did NOT hesitate to let me know that if I didn’t marry him, I’d run the risk of becoming an old maid, so I did. I married him. I was available for whatever he needed; I nursed him when he injured his leg, ending his football career; I put my dreams on hold so that he could achieve his in becoming a local football coach to youth in our city; I even sat quietly as he played his video games and spent countless nights out with his college buddies several nights a week. Knowing that I gained a husband didn’t change that I lost myself.

SWAP: C.S. Lewis stated “No one ever told me that grief felt so much like fear.” ― Can you relate? 

Kathryn: I can relate. I feared what my mom and dad or church community would say if I told them that I felt like I lost myself. All while growing up, the girls at church were ushered to be prim and proper so that we could get married. I feared that if I stood up and said, “I don’t know who I am, I don’t want to get married now,” that they would laugh me to scorn. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my husband, but I loved myself too. I had dreams that I put on hold. I loved painting, but never pursued it. I loved basketball, but never pursued it past high school. I feared that if I chose things that I loved that I wouldn’t have the time or energy to love and keep my husband. I lost myself because I didn’t choose my dreams or goals. I knew God gave me my talents to use for him and I prayed every night for his grace to give me a new day to be bold about who he created me to be. I was numb in my marriage. I distanced myself from girlfriends and family. I knew he didn’t just create me to be a wife. He created me to mentor and achieve great things for his glory. If I continued to lose myself each day, I would have never gained the courage to be who I am today...a child of God destined for greatness and created for his purpose. I realize now that I don’t have to fear not knowing who I am…Grieving was the process that led me to God.

SWAP: What inspires you to show up even when you are fearful and/or uncertain?

Kathryn: I would just sit and watch my son when he was younger. I would watch as he tried new things without an ounce of fear. At such a young age, he was so free in who he was; he knew what he wanted and didn't want and that made me yearn to be all that and more. Once I realized the beautiful grace of Jesus shining on me, it turned my fear into faithful steps. I've became free in who God created me to be. I started doing things I loved like cycling, coaching basketball, and mentoring young girls in our community. It gave me an outlet to teach others what no one taught me…to find my identity in Christ. I had the discussion with my husband and he shared that he never wanted me to ever feel like I couldn’t be myself around him. I lost so many years in my marriage for fear of not knowing and being myself!

SWAP: Your spirituality is clearly an important part of your journey. In what ways, have your spiritual beliefs helped you cope with loss?

Kathryn: God had to show me that if I wanted to know me, then I needed to know him. So I learned day by day to seek Him diligently, so that he would be found in my heart. I have the fuel to deepen my relationship with my husband and my son and I’m deepening my relationship with me and I feel good about myself.

Forgiveness is key for me in coping with my loss. I believed that my parents had good intentions in wanting to see me happy, but may have gone at it the wrong way. I felt forced into my marriage before my time and was stuck, trying to figure out who I was and why I was even here. I blamed them for a long time, yet I’ve forgiven them for those pressures. I even owned up to my choices and forgave myself for how I treated/didn't treat myself and my family.

SWAP: How would you describe comfort?

Kathryn: I would describe comfort as falling freely in God’s arms. Being vulnerable without fear. Learning that vulnerability is actually strength, growth, and confidence. I describe comfort as my husband sharing that he loves me deeply and is honored to see my growth in Christ and how it has made him more open to sharing and going deeper in conversation, worship, and prayer as a couple.

SWAP: What Bible verses are helpful for you as you seek God's comfort? 

Kathryn: At this moment, I find myself often going to Philippians 3:10 – “That I may know him…” I can't get past that phrase. I just want to know God more and more.

SWAP: Any closing statements of advice that you want to offer to those who have/are experiencing loss or grieving?

Kathryn: I don’t feel lost anymore. Though I sometimes wonder about that young girl who was just going with the flow of life, following after her husband, and not actively living…I don’t go there to stay. I go to reflect and thank God for his grace in that season. I’m found now. Christ’s resurrection raised me up and not only do I see Him more clearly, I see who he has created me to be. I encourage anyone who feels like they have lost themselves to seek God. You will find more than yourself, you will find a life of purpose that only a perfect master could create! Don’t turn your back on those that love you. Be honest in your relationships; if you’re dating or contemplating marriage, or are married, my advice would be to always be upfront and honest with your mate and don't be ashamed to love God more than anything or anyone in this world.

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Kathryn, we’ve really appreciated this interview! We feel like you’ve gone beyond the superficial and answered some really helpful questions for our readers. Thank you for yielding your time for our Believest Thou Are Comforted series!


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