June 9, 2021

About Alena

She loves 💕:

☕️ Coffee
📚 Reading
🎶 A Great Jam
🌮 🥑 Tacos and Guacamole
🔥 Convos with Wholehearted Friends around a Fire
🚗🌵Driving (& Worshiping) with the Windows Down in Glorious New Mexico Weather
🏜Traveling to Incredible Views
✨ Shooting Stars and Full Moons
🌙Being a Night Owl and Sleeping In Late
🏝Watching Sunset Reflected on the Ocean
& Emojis.😉

She also loves 💕:

The Lord ✝️
Keeping His Sabbath🤲🏻
Absorbing His Word 📖
Expanding the God-Box🎁
Writing & Journaling✍🏻
Reframing Christianity for our Spiritual Generation 👀🙌🏻
Praying and Listening for His Sweet Voice🙏🏻
Blessing Others and Loving Well♥️
Going ‘all in’ with God ❤️🧠💪🏻
Scuba Diving in the Spriti🤿
Partnering with God to Heal
Broken Hearts💔
& Miniphanies®.😲

I wish I could leave you with only that list above! How fun to know some of my favorite things and how I love to spend my time. I’m not one for entertainment so much as experiences. I seek constant growth and making great memories with great friends.

A lot of people have asked me how I accomplish so much in life. That’s my secret. I refuse to avoid my pain or escape into entertainment. I’ll watch The Chosen or a movie on occasion, but I am very careful about what I absorb. In order to be a clean temple for the Lord to abide in and flow-through, I understand I have to be mindful of what I absorb, listen to, or watch. What we put in our hearts and minds, is what overflows to others. My old pastor, Alan Hawkins, used to say “the voice you listen to is your God.”

I have found the peace that surpasses all understanding in seeking the Lord in all things at all times. Nothing else satisfies anymore. He’s the only voice I want to listen to. So, I don’t own a TV. (I know, right?)

But let me tell you, it was a journey to get to this peaceful place…

I was brought up Christian. Jesus was my best friend when I was little. I loved to be alone, reading, playing, praying, even as a kid. I’m certain this means he really set me apart for him at a young age.

< That’s me, so cute with an Easter hat at Grandma’s house… 

In high school, we moved from the midwest to New Mexico. This is one of the best things that happened to me. It expanded my world and introduced me to different cultures. The southwest is very different than the midwest. (But if you hear an accent sneak out sometimes on the podcast… that’s the Nebraska in me.)

In college, I studied world religions because, in my heart, I just couldn’t justify spending 4 years studying anything other than God and what people thought of him. Shortly after graduating, I went through a short 9-month marriage, which I would consider an annulment. This is the very short version of a painful story. 

As I coped, I opened a wedding planning business. The Lord truly blessed that business. I became one of the best awarded and most well-known professional wedding planners in the state. I was about to take over the southwest when the Lord led me to shut the doors. I still love event planning of all kinds, so reach out if you want help planning something. 😉

While I was a wedding planner, I didn’t stop learning. After my BA, I got a Certificate in Wholistic Kinesiology (studying things like nutritional health, muscle testing, and emotional healing techniques) and then, I went to seminary and studied Spiritual Formation. Spiritual Mentoring is kind of like pastoral counseling or life coaching, but for the soul.

Shortly after, I started Miniphanies®. People met me one-on-one for spiritual mentoring. I hosted mini-retreats on the weekends. I released a weekly podcast for two years. We even had a subscription box service called the reconnect kit, designed to help you engage in self-care rituals that reconnected you to yourself, God’s Spirit, and this beautiful world we live in.

But, in 2018, my world fell apart. I call it my Job season. In the Bible, there is a story about a man named Job who has everything: a blessed and fruitful life with beautiful children and a love for the Lord. And the Lord tests him. He allows the enemy to take it all away to see if Job will still love him, even without all his material blessings.

My second marriage, to the love of my life, fell apart. My heart was broken.
My body was a mess. I was covered in hives from head to toe. Doctors “couldn’t find” the cause of or cure because no one would admit it was an allergic reaction to a vaccine.
God led me to close my businesses. (All 3 of them at that point.)
He told me to move from the desert I loved to Missouri, where humidity and mosquitos abound.

I was arguing with God, a lot.

My friends called me Moses because he argues with the Lord at the burning bush when he is called into his purpose. Moses argues that people won’t listen to him and that he’s not good enough or skilled enough, and then flat out asks God to send someone else.

Yep, I was just like Moses. 😔

I spent over 2 years (June 2019-October 2021) tearing down all those arguments, recovering from the Job season, and falling in love with the Lord all over again. He picked me up like Dorothy and flung me to the IHOPKC prayer room in Kansas City. I received a scholarship to spend the first 6 months in the Nightwatch, interceding from midnight to 6 am. I had thought I might move back to NM when I was done with the internship, but then COVID hit. Stuck in misery, I mean Missouri 😆, I ended up working for IHOPKC and finishing my book, Return to Love: Restoring the Heart of Christianity. 

All of a sudden, the ways the Lord had set me up for success started to come to the light. When God had said to shut down the wedding biz, it felt like he was taking away everything I loved. It didn’t make sense. Of course, when he moved me to KCMO, I thought maybe that was why. But when COVID arrived, there were no weddings. I would have lost everything if I was still financially dependent on the wedding biz. He pulled me out just in time.

God continues to lead me step by step. Life is still not what I expected. Here I am, 35(ish), with a painful past, no husband, no career, none of the things I expected to have at this age…. I left all that behind for the pearl of great price. (See Matthew 13:45-46) I have an awesome resume, but I choose to stay on this faith walk. There is no going back. This is my calling, my purpose. And now, I can say it was worth it. God is worth it. I would not change a thing. I would go through all the pain and heartache again, if it led me right here… inspiring you with my stories and bringing you into the peace that surpasses all understanding with Jesus.

I’m so different today than I was then. I’m more compassionate. I’m more gentle with myself and others. I lean into my weakness instead of my pride. I love God with wholehearted, intentional pursuit. I am overflowing with things to share about embracing a spiritual lifestyle. I have so much to say about God, life, and love: books, podcasts, blogs… more!

So there you go…. I really was like Moses….

I’m someone who was a slave to our modern-day Pharaoh: our cultural expectations, people-pleasing, being a workaholic… and then, God rescued me. When he did, I thought he was taking away everything I loved and punishing me for all I’d done “wrong.”

I wandered in the spiritual desert, where it was just him and I⏤ no distractions. He wasn’t punishing me, he was pulling me close. In that secret place, I learned how much he loved me, provided for me, and that he never was mad at me. He had, in fact, always been with me and for me. He was always blessing me and leading me, even when things looked bad. I came to trust him and believe his Word is true: God really does work all things together for the good of those who love him. (Rom 8:28)

I arrived at the same place Moses did on his journey. I also said to the Lord “You are telling me what to do and you say you know me by name and I have found your favor. If this is true, if you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to walk in your favor. I don’t want to go anywhere without your presence.” (See Exodus 33:12-23 for his actual words.) The Lord went with Moses, met him in his prayer tent, and spoke with him face to face.

It’s not so bad being like Moses in the long run. 😍

After all I’ve been through, all I’ve studied, all I’ve witnessed, I’m here to remind you everything is spiritual and it all happens for a reason, even if you can’t see it yet. I’m here to stand in the gap and fulfill my namesake: to be a bearer of light. I’m here to show you an example of what it looks like when someone commits to go all-in with God and inspire you to go all-in too. I want to follow Jesus, listen to the Spirit, and love God, others & myself with all I’ve got. I’m inviting you to join me. I believe we can all be like Moses and intimately walk with the Lord…

 I hope you will join me on the journey to return to love.
From the bottom of my soul,

💛 Alena