7 In Featured Guests

Inspired Blogger: Charis of At The Gate Called Beautiful

I am so excited to introduce you to this month’s Inspired Blogger!  I am fortunate to know Charis “in real life”, as she is the niece of my pastor and has come to the house of prayer I attend for different events.  She is a like-minded sister-in-Christ, a lover of worship and intercession, and a woman who is passionate about her family.  I am thankful to be able to share this journey of blogging with her.

Without further adieu, meet Charis of
At The Gate Called Beautiful!

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Well, I’m 34 years old and have been married to my awesome husband for 11 years. I have 5 little boys – yes, you read that right 5 BOYS! We go through a lot of food. My husband and I oversee a ministry in Northern California called The Watch House of Prayer. We have a prayer room in our city where we have corporate prayer and worship and devotional prayer and worship times. We also get to do all the other pastoring kinds of stuff that is needed when you are involved in any ministry. I also teach piano lessons – I have a B.A. in Music.

I am a huge multi-tasker (you kinda have to be with 5 small kids). I have been known to write a blog post one-handed while nursing a baby. If you came over to my house for coffee or tea, I would most likely chat with you while knitting/crocheting or hanging up our never ending clean laundry pile. (hey, at least it is clean!) I would love to make you dinner, but at the same time I might work on my homemade raw milk yogurt, whip together a simple dessert, start soaking some oat groats for tomorrow’s breakfast, and try to do the dishes as I try to carry on a conversation with you. I also probably check my email way too often. Okay, sometimes my multi-tasking isn’t so effective.

I can’t go to sleep very well unless I read in bed and listen to music – my favorite is streaming the Kansas City Prayer Room. I completely blame my parents for putting me to bed with music as a small child. I love to go on walks, run, ride bikes, spend time at the lake, or any fun outdoor activity that I can do with my family. I have a love of fresh produce (I was a vegetarian for 8 years), exotic dark chocolates, pretty yarn, yummy teas, African coffees, colorful nail polishes, glitter, and squishy babies. I usually write at night when everyone else is asleep because I can’t concentrate well with all the joyful chaos. I really like to sleep but don’t get much of it with pretty much never ending babies or pregnancies. Someday…

How long have you been blogging and how/why did you start?

4 years – I can hardly believe it has been that long! I have always loved writing and someday want to write a book. My sister encouraged me in March of 2009 to start a blog because she thought I would enjoy it. So, I basically started to get back into writing. I decided I wanted to have a place where I could give from what the Lord has given me. This made me think of the encounter in Acts that Peter had with the beggar at the Gate called Beautiful where he didn’t have gold or silver to give, but gave from what he had – and the Holy Spirit healed the man! I am a willing vessel for the Lord to use me in bringing healing to others’ lives and bodies, and I would love if what I write could be used in your life this way. I hope that sharing my journey of learning to follow Jesus can do that even if we don’t get to spend time in the same room. I want to encourage others to not give up in their pursuit of knowing Jesus – to fill them with courage to walk the path before them no matter how hard it might be at times. He is faithful and we can always trust Him.

What is the purpose of your blog?

To encourage other believers to pursue a life of pursuing the Lord with their whole hearts. I want to share my journey, including my broken attempt at growing in love with Jesus as a mom and wife and woman. I am far from perfect. Even being in ministry, I mess up so many times in my life and need the mercy of Jesus every single day. I am a very real person and want to make a safe place for others to share their journeys. I think it is so encouraging to know we aren’t alone when walking with Jesus looks hard, and to have someone to celebrate with when we get tastes of His abundant faithfulness. I want to use my writing as a worship to Jesus because He is worthy.

What do you most enjoy about blogging?

I really do enjoy writing. I find I connect with God in a special way when I write that is different than talking out loud with people.

What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about worshiping Jesus and leading others into worship. We worship simply because He is worthy to be worshiped, but it is so amazing to feel the Father’s pleasure on my heart when I exalt His Son. I am passionate about raising my kids to know the Lord and to serve Him faithfully. I want each of them to encounter Him in such a personal way that their lives are forever marked and He is their God, not just the God of their parents. I am passionate about growing in a life of prayer and learning how to be a servant leader like Jesus. Some other things I really enjoy are running, cooking organic whole foods, writing (music and otherwise), knitting, the outdoors, and all the arts. I am seeking to learn how to live more simply – we are a missionary family in California with 5 kids, so this is both a desire and necessity!

Who or what inspires you?

Many things. It could be a sermon. It could be something I read. It could be the line in a song. It could be something out of the mouth of one of my children. It could be looking at a mountain side or blooming tree or crashing wave. When my heart is soft, I find that God can speak to me in so many ways.

Tell us something random about yourself.

I cry almost every single day. I don’t only cry when I am sad. I cry when I am touched, when I am happy, when I am tired, when I am laughing too hard, and of course when I am sad. I feel deeply.

Will you share with us one of your favorite posts and what you love about it?

I would say probably my series on marriage – Joy in the Journey. I felt the Lord stirring in me for a while to write to encourage others in their marriages.

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Friends, will you head over to Charis’ blog to say hello and have a look around?  Just click the button below and you’ll be taken there.

blog button

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7 Comments

  • Reply
    charis
    June 5, 2013 at 8:01 am

    thank you barbie! i feel really honored to be featured here. you are always such an encouragement to me – through your blog and through your “off screen” life. i love you my friend!
    charis recently posted..it all depends on your point of view

    • Reply
      Barbie
      June 5, 2013 at 9:25 pm

      Thank you Charis! I feel the same towards you, a kindred spirit indeed. I hope we can have coffee/smoothies again soon!

  • Reply
    Gina
    June 5, 2013 at 9:52 am

    I LOVED this post so much. And I LOVE Charis’ blog. I really loved how you shared your tenderness. It is nice to know that it is o.k. for me to be ready to cry at any moment, since I do too 🙂 love this, and you!

  • Reply
    Amy Swanson
    June 5, 2013 at 10:50 am

    Great interview blog post Barbie and Charis you are both inspiring woman. Charis thanks for continuing to be the kind tender hearted feeling blessing that you are and for sharing..keep it up you crazy multitasker you!

    • Reply
      Barbie
      June 5, 2013 at 9:26 pm

      Thank you Amy for stopping by to read!

  • Reply
    Greg
    June 7, 2013 at 11:48 am

    Charis is awesome (in fact the whole family is)! I enjoyed the post and pray increased favor and blessings!!!
    Greg recently posted..The Danger of Entitlement and How Its Message Is Impacting Your Personal Life, Church Life and Walk with God

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