Leah’s story — like many of our own — is tinged with disappointment and rejection. It’s also filled with hope. Glorious hope. Endless hope.
In Genesis 29 Leah gave her husband, Jacob, three healthy sons. But Jacob gave his heart to her beautiful younger sister, Rachel.
With each birth, Leah pleaded for relief from her heartache.
- “Surely my husband will love me now.” Genesis 29:32
- “…the Lord heard that I am not loved…” Genesis 29:33
- “Now at last my husband will become attached to me…” Genesis 29:34
Leah never gave up. She never lost hope. And she never put aside her faith in the One who truly loved her.
During those years, Leah’s faith grew and matured. She discovered she was not alone and her life was not without purpose. Her God was with her. Her sons were with her. And before another season passed, her womb was full once more.
She conceived again,… Genesis 29:35
This was “the fourth time she conceived” (WYC), perhaps in as many years. All those little ones to care for, and yet God honored her hope and her prayers, and “she became pregnant again” (CEB).
Something remarkable happened during those nine months. It seems Leah looked at the children around her feet, gazed up at the heavens above, and realized how very much she was loved, how clearly blessed she was among women.
…and when she gave birth to a son… Genesis 29:35
We have no record of her deliveries being especially difficult. She simply “childed a son” (WYC). Notice how she didn’t seek out Jacob, wanting his attention or affection. And she didn’t turn to her sister or her father or her neighbors, needing their approval.
With a heart full of joy, Leah lifted her voice to the One who mattered most.
…she said, “This time…” Genesis 29:35
This time she chose wisely. Maybe not the other times, but this time she got it right. This time she turned to God, knowing she couldn’t change Jacob, but she could change herself.
“…I will…” Genesis 29:35
So decisive, so sure. “Now I shall acknowledge to the Lord” (WYC). Instead of blaming God for what she didn’t have, Leah began praising God for what she did have.
“…praise the Lord.” Genesis 29:35
Translated with even more energy, “Now will I praise the Lord!” (AMP).
It’s the first time in the New International Version we find the phrase “praise the Lord,” spoken by a woman who could have complained to the Lord, pleaded with the Lord, railed at the Lord, yet she did none of those things.
Instead, Leah, the unseen bride, the unloved wife, finally understood she was loved by God.
So she was. And so are you, dear one.
Each of us must come to that Leah place — a place where God is enough, where his grace is enough, where his love truly is enough.
I finally reached that place five years after I met the Lord and mere days after I met Bill, now my sweet husband for 32 years and counting. Our first date was joy unspeakable. He’s the one! my heart kept whispering.
Yet when Bill left my house that evening, I called my best friend and said, “I just found the man of my prayers. And if he never calls me again, I’ll be okay.”
That was a huge step for a woman like me, who’d spent a lost decade looking for love and settling for less. Much less. To find a terrific guy and yet be willing to let him go, knowing I was fully loved by God — that for me was the Leah place.
Have you landed there, friend? Do you know how much God loves you?
Leah’s four sons and her changed heart were living proof of God’s love for her.
So she named him Judah. Genesis 29:35
The very sound of his name was like the Hebrew word for praise, as God gave Leah “a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair” (Isaiah 61:3).
The arrival of that fourth son of hers — that “praise the Lord” son — marked the start of something big. “For it is clear that our Lord descended from Judah” (Hebrews 7:14). Much as we admire godly Joseph, Rebekah’s first son, it was kingly Judah, Leah’s fourth son, whom God chose to bear the royal seed.
The opening words of the New Testament tell the tale: “A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah” (Matthew 1:1-2).
If we listed the mothers rather than the fathers, it would be Sarah, Rebekah, Leah: two beauties loved by their husbands and one tender-eyed woman loved by God.
This month’s post is adapted from the chapter “Morning Has Broken” in the updated edition of Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible, our featured Book by Book for August. You’ll find it on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and ChristianBook. Naturally, I had copies to give away!
Fifteen years ago, before I wrote Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible, I wrapped this Genesis story in tartan and heather for a series of Scottish historical novels, beginning with Thorn in My Heart. On Thursday, August 30, I chose five winners to receive autographed copies of Thorn in My Heart and Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible. Congratulations to Jennifer, Nancy, Sheila, Marjorie, and Bev.
What joy it is to open God’s Word with you, month by month, book by book!
Your grateful sister, Liz
P.S. Missed our August 1 Facebook LIVE for Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible? Watch it here anytime. And if listening is your thing, you’ll find podcasts on each of our five Slightly Bad Girls here.
P.P.S. I’d love to connect with you in person this autumn at one of the 30 events where I’ll be speaking. Details here. Still feeling good, still going strong, thanks be to God!
I love the story of Leah. It reinforces to me that God sees me, even though I feel invisible at times, overlooked and spoken over, He sees me and loves to hear my voice. Thank you Liz!
Leah’s desire to be loved is something I can relate to. Giving it all to our Lord will be what I do. Loving the Lord and turning my desire to serving him better. Leah’s story brings tears to my eyes and my heart. I must follow her lead to be content and happy. Thank you Liz!!!
liz i am reading the book series of Leans Rose and Jamie..I’m on book 4 Grace in Thine Eyes. I was very upset with Leans for keeping on loving Jamie no matter what even tho he loved her sister more. I was upset with him for going back and forth.At times I was upset with Rose for being so self centered.But Leans was like Leah ..she had her son that she loved completely and she loved the Lord..I think that sustained her through all her heartache her father was so mean to all of them.But I had never really considered how Leah must have felt…all those years ago.Thanks for bringing this to my attention.This spell correct won’t let me write LEANA..I hope all is well with you and yours Take care..Estella Findley
What a great lesson from Leah. God is enough! I am so much like her. I see what I don’t have and who doesn’t love me. I need to keep my eyes on the One who loves me and gives me so much more than I deserve. Thank you for bringing out this important message!
Hello Ladies and thanks Liz,
Who hasn’t been rejected? Leah held out for love and received more from her heavenly husband then what Jacob could supply. Let’s do what she did!
But How do you do that after 30 years and abuse and neglect?
All has been taken from me…my health, my strength, even my own will for life.
I am 56 with many health issues, including cancer. My ‘husband’ has abandoned me because I am a burden to him.
Where do I go?
Thank you, My daughter and son-in-law are estranged from us, this is just another reminder that I just need Jesus.
Finally at 69 years old, I can relax in the knowledge that God loves me as I am, is very pleased at his creation & still has much for me to do. The yoke of pleasing others has disappeared. My life ahead will simply be the best!!
I finally had a chance to read “Hang on to Hope”. What a blessing!
I can really identify with Leah needing the Lord’s loving touch.
I have had a lot of health issues and a lot of pain for quite a while now. One day I was feeling really down, crying, and in pain.
When I reached into my purse for a tissue, my hand found a card that I had put there a couple of months ago. The card said “God has a purpose for your pain, a reason for your struggle, and a reward for your faithfulness. Trust HIM and don’t give up.” My tears of pain and distress turned to tears of rejoicing for the God who sees me, and always meets me at my point of need, once I remember to ask with a grateful heart.
May God bless you and your ministry!
Liz. I have learned from Leah that maybe u am trying to please people when I really need to focus on the Lord, who loves me already.
What a beautiful and timely message. I’m always so grateful to read your posts. My husband of 31 years abandoned me. I came home to him all moved out.
It’s been very rough- AND God loves me- He is enough.
Hang on to hope! I needed this today!! Two dear, close friends have life threatening cancer, my son is dating a girl that I wish I could like but don’t, and today, yes today I found out I’m out of a job. I thought “what are you doing God?”. “You have my attention. You are enough!!” Cancer, hard people to deal with and no job….but You Lord will not leave me! Like Leah, I have been focusing on people to give me worth and this job. This story helped me remember to look up and see the goodness of the Lord.
Thank you for a beautiful teaching about Leah. Im sure her heart was so full when she finally realized that she was loved by the Lord.
Several years ago my sister, brother, and I had to tell our Mother that she had colon cancer. Without a moments hesitation, she responded, “well, Praise the Lord anyway.” I will always hold close her deep faith and know God loves her too.
This story reminds me once again that He is enough even when I don’t feel I measure up. His love for me always amazes me. Love this story! Thank you Liiz.
Awww..what a beautiful story of God’s Amazing Love…The results of being obedient…a beautiful reminder of how much God truly loves us. Thank you for sharing…and have a fabulous day that the Lord has given.
I was so addicted to men, hoping each time they would stay and love me. I married. Divorced. It has been God and me now for 29 years. I know that I know I am loved by my heavenly Father and I am complete through His love.
Loved Leah! In Many ways I can identify with her.
Liz i have read the story of Jacob and Rebecca many times and somehow I missed this significant truth that God loves Leah so very much that He allowed His beloved Son Jesus to come through the line of Judah her son.
God is so very loving to each and everyone of us who belong to him.
Sister you are so blessed by the beautiful revelations the Lord has given to you as you express in your many writings of the grace and the love of our Heavenly Father.
I pray that you are doing well and continue to be the mighty warrior of the Lord that He has called you to be in Jesus name amen!!😍
No man can love me like God does. He is always faithful. He will always love me and do what is best for me.
I enjoyed “Bad Girls of the Bible”. I look forward to “Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible”.
Thank you for your ministry.
After all these years, I’m finally reading and leading a study using “Bad Girls of the Bible”! I look forward to sharing the lives of all of these girls with other girls. It’s been difficult at our church to get intergenerational groups going – – our women like the small groups they normally hang together in, thank you very much! This summer we made some progress, and I hope to keep up the momentum. Your “The Girl’s Still Got It!” was a great tool to get women together a few summers ago. My prayer is that once again God’s Word reaches the women who need it most as together we study His Word and your words. Thank you for your years of devoted study of God’s Word, Liz! Thank you for speaking His Word truthfully and sharing it with others. May Jesus continue to bless you, your family and your ministry REAL BIG!!
P.S. I forgot to add, thanks for sharing your thoughts on Leah!! Her story of hope has given my day a fresh, strong start of praising our Lord, too.
Wow! I was listening to Gwen Smith’s podcast this morning and you were speaking about your new book. I had to hear more, I looked you up and now I know. I feel like God led me here this morning. I am a Leah, looking for a change in myself. Thank you for your message, looking forward to see & read more.
I have used your books to lead women’s Bible studies, but one of the comments in today’s posting really resonated with me…. “Each of us must come to that Leah place — a place where God is enough, where his grace is enough, where his love truly is enough.” He IS enough – whatever my circumstances. And I am enough, when I am trusting in Him, with my hands open, and my heart open. He IS enough! Thank you, Liz, for this comment. It was an encouragement to me today as I seek next steps in ministry and vocation. In the meantime, in the waiting, in the seeking – He is enough! And, I too, praise Him!
I love these insights into Leah’s heart and mind. Looking forward to reading more.
Leah’s circumstances? Umm, no thank you! No one wants to be the booby prize. No one wants a marriage devoid of love. To be forced to be a pawn in a scam that brought disappointment and anger.
What a reminder that even truly heartbreaking circumstances can be used for God’s glory. Even this crash of brokenness can be redeemed.
You have such a way of looking into the hearts of these women of the Bible. Thank you for your inspiring stories!
I loved the insight you provide into Leah’s heart as she struggled in a difficult marriage. I love your Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible. I love the humor and the wisdom contained in each of your books! Thank you!
Oh, this is so good, Liz, and so is God for letting me read it! It reinforces we don’t need physical beauty to be “praise-bearers” (Judah meaning “praise.”) Just a willingness to let God change our hearts.
Thanks so much for your words of history and encouragement! God is so truly using you to share His majesty. Praying for you and Bill, hoping your health has improved. My husband is in a scary time as we wait to know what doctors want to do. God is good and in control! Blessings!
Honestly, I never thought in depth about the rejection Leah felt, so I appreciate the way you can bring new perspective to these real life stories. The new perspective brings new life and understanding, making the Bible feel even MORE practical to our lives today. I am grateful she was able to push past her own feelings of rejection and embrace a heart of thankfulness. Thank you!
If it were not for having HOPE and hanging in there with all the negativeness of situations in my life, I don’t know where I would be now. God, in my latter years as I grow and learn about His Word, has put HOPE in my heart and an unwavering LOVE for Him and Jesus.
I thank you, too, for your inspiring books and insights on Leah’s and others hearts as they struggle with their insecurities.
As usual your message is just what I needed this morning; as a widow, missing my husband, I sometimes need to be reminded that I am loved by the perfect One and I need nothing and no one else to make my life complete. God is always here.
Walking this road, too, Anne. I struggle to keep my focus on Jesus as my all-in-all these 14 years since my husband entered glory. Sometimes I feel put aside, but God has a purpose and I’m seeking to be obedient to his call. May he bless your days by giving you corner time only when you need rest. Praying for you.🙏🏻💐
I feel exactly the same way, Anne.
Liz, thank you so much for all your books. I’ve loved each one of them, and always gain a new insight to God.
Loved how you told Leah’s story. I like others knew of Jacob’s story, but somehow just didn’t think it through that God chose the wife that was just a vessel to Jacob for his children, to be the mother of Judah in which would be Jesus’ lineage! Only God! And a reminder not to blame God for the turns in our lives or what we don’t have, but to always praise God in every and all situations!
A very timely message to read. God is our all and all isn’t He? I love how you brought out that it took time for Leah to learn her lesson and do things differently when fully seeing/understanding God is enough. There is so much HOPE for us always.
Liz…thank you for reminding us that we, too, are very much loved and favored by God. Our dad chose to raise 3 other girls instead of my twin sister my self and my brother. Today we have a relationship with our dad, but, Jill and I have learned to trust our heavenly Father even more. I am blessed!
I have read the story of Leah and Rachel many times! I never caught the fact of Judah’s name being a praise to God. I did pick up on hoping for love from Jacob in the first three sons. Thank you for a lovely thought of the grace that came from turning her eyes on God. I shall ponder this!
Though a Christian for many years, and having studied this part of the Bible — about Jacob, Leah, and Rachel — before, I still need to be reminded of that truth that God loves me more than any other being could. Your email message came just at the right time — as they always do. Thank you for your messages of encouragement.
Beautifully written!! You have so graciously shared the Truths of God’s Word in the life of Lea, and her son Jacob in a way I had never seen it, thank you!
Your words have inspired my own heart to praise God for what I do have and not for what I wished I had.
“Each of us must come to that Lea place, a place where God is enough, His grace is enough, His love is enough.” How beautiful is that!
Starting my day off with this devotional has set the scene for a joyous up lifting, God praising day!
I am so very thankful I have found you, and it was all through a dear friend who gifted me one of your devotional books after my knee replacement. Being laid up and having that book has been a real blessing.
God’s blessings be upon you as you touch the hearts of others with your gift of teaching~
Thank you so much for these new (to me) insights into Leah. Yes, I have read all about her several times, but not in this context. You have reminded me to HOPE and to praise the Lord in all of my circumstances. Even when things don’t seem to be going well I can still praise Him for all of His goodness to me. Today’s trials are only a blip on the screen of my life and what I’m looking forward to.
Thank you so very much for your story about Leah. I went through a divorce 7 years ago after 43 years of marriaage. I still love my husband and was so hoping for getting issues resolved and getting back together with him but, last year I fjnally realized it is not to be. He made it plain that he does not love me! I have been devastated but after reading your articule on Leah, I realized God loves me so much and i rejoice jn Him!! Thank you. THANK YOU!!
Thank you for your timely reminder of Leah’s obedience and heart. I too have experienced love withheld from a precious daughter. It is sad, but yes, God is enough.
Thank you so much for your timely words. It’s wonderful to be reminded of how much God loves us………even if we are in an unloved situation. We must set our gaze to God and remember always we are LOVED!
Our God is awesome. He is the Alpha and the Omega. He loves us, even when feel unloved. It breaks my heart to see so many women who believe that the only thing that will fulfill their need for love is money, men, children, or stuff. Those things cannot do what our God can do. Leah’s story shows us that. Thank your for sharing this wonderful story.
Your insights always bless me. I look forward each month to refreshing moments to spend with you.
I’ve wondered why Judah was chosen in the linage of Christ. How precious to see the reflection of praise from Leah. What remarkable influence we have on our children’s future! I’ll never see Leah again as the sad and lonely cast off wife. Joy unspeakable as she marvels in God’s grace and blessing.
Bless you for bringing these god given thoughts to us.
This ring deeply within especially now as I just went through a breakup days ago. We as women don’t need a man to make up feel whole or loved. God is all we need. Thank you for reminding me of that.
No one can write like you Liz. No one has such great in sight. I love how you’ve made yourself so vulnerable and share your life before the “Leah” moment. I’m with you, I was the same. Our father abandoned us when I was a toddler. Our mother raised us four kids by herself, without any kind of support from him. I ached for my father, and when I was a young adult I tried “looking for love in all the wrong places” but then, my prince arrived, and like Leah, I am just fine with him and me. Love and praying for you Liz. -Bev
So often in the rush of our daily lives we forget that ALL loves comes from our Lord. Whether we find the love from a husband, a child, a friend or other family member, it comes from our God. It could be in a glass of water desperately needed, a place of safety, or in the every day things we encounter on our journey.
Another timely message Liz. I’m sending this to my niece today!
When young I also looked for love in all the wrong places and discovered that I was loved by my Lord.
Then when I quit looking met my husband. We had 44 years until he graduated to Glory from pancreatic cancer.
You’re so relatable! Please don’t ever stop.
I just love you Liz! You have such a beautiful and wise heart! In all the years I’ve read and heard about Leah, I never picked up on that. Now it makes sense as to why God chose Judah. Thank you!
I can identify with Leah. The feelings of rejection ,guilt and not good enough are hard to deal with. I’m thankful God doesn’t quit on us.
O Liz, Thank You. Your post today had me strolling down memory lane of my life as Leah. I had a husband and children but was always seeking approval, affection, touching and hugging in front of children, but never receiving it. After some years and a followed divorce, finding myself single, I prayed to God for His choice of a husband for me as I had never thought to do that before. I met my beautiful, loving, affectionate husband the next day at church. We have been married 29 years and are closer today than ever before. My lesson to look to God for everything – even His choice on a husband – taught me that God indeed loves me. He hears and He listens. He knows the deepest desires of my heart but more importantly, He had and has a plan for me. This was my turning point in trusting God with all that I need. He, Abba Father, loves me. And through these 29 years my Jimmy has grown with me in trusting our mutual Father God. All praise, honor, and glory to God through Christ Jesus. Amen – Pat Works
Your knowledge and your wisdom always inspire me! Thank you!
It is always precious to look deeper into the stories of those we have learned of in God’s Word. Thank you Liz for taking me into Leah’s story and my own. What a special viewpoint to help us remember Who we belong to and Who loves us most.
Being in a Leah place is to be in perfect peace despite your circumstances. I am there from time to time. It’s a work in progress. He’s always teaching us. Thank you Liz. Thank You God.
Wow! Like Leah could not change Jacob, I am reminded that I cannot change my husband. He has several addictions (alcohol, smokeless tobacco, and lottery tickets) and even a recent health scare and loss of a toe could not get him to change. But it is refreshing to be reminded that we all have things our loved ones would like to change about us and yet, God is there to help us navigate these frustrations and give us hope. I am okay. God is here with me, holding me up. Thanks Liz! I saw you a couple of weeks ago at Spencer Christian Church and have found your podcasts!!! LOVE listening to you.
Wow! Leah is such an example that I needed.
So often I turn to despair. I need to offer “a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair”.
Thank you for the beautiful words to encourage us today and the gorgeous flower photos!
Love the story of Leah. She was so patient and steadfast. Will be seeing you in October in Ashland. Can not wait. God Bless!!!
I’m currently going through a divorce and I can relate to Leah! God’s love and His granting me peace through it all has replaced any need for love from another. He is all I need. This is very new for me but an amazing experience. God bless you and I’m so glad you are feeling so well.
I love this, and Leah’s story. Although I was loved, I struggled with infertility. Finallly, after years of prayers, they were answered, and I bore a beautiful healthy son. I praised God that day 30 years ago, and continue to praise Him everyday for the gift of my precious son- the only child I would bear. God is good, and praises should be on our lips every day. This story is a good reminder to be grateful for what we have, not complaining about what we don’t have.
Leah’s story resonates with me on so many levels. I remember being the plain girl with glasses that no one was interested in, while my beautiful sister had what seemed like dozens of boyfriends and interested guys! All I wanted was to be loved too. Finally at age 16, I met the Lord and He truly was the man of my dreams, who would love me forever! A decade after that, I met my now husband, who surpassed every character trait I had told the Lord I wanted in an earthly husband. He is not perfect, but he also loves the Lord, and it is so wonderful to serve the Lord together. Leah is a beautiful example of putting the Lord first and letting Him work out the details.
I am feeling slightly bruised and broken and can’t wait to read these books.
I am feeling slightly bruised and broken and can’t wait to read these books.
Thank you for the reminder that others have also struggled, like Leah, with grasping how much God loves us. I am not alone that it can be a struggle for my heart to fully grasp what God’s word says and my head knows from reading God’s word.
Thank you for showing us that Leah had a story beyond the unloved wife; she was a mother of 4 healthy boys whom she loved and who loved her. Somehow I never saw the 4th boy and how Leah went from being “Woe is me, my husband doesn’t love me no matter how many sons I give him” to I will praise the Lord who is the great giver of love and new birth. I think we tend to read what makes us feel good, so we skip over Leah because who wants to read about an unloved wife. Thank you for your gift of great writings – thank you for the books you have written and the ones you are yet to write. Love you writing style, and your love for the Lord.
As we revisit these stories and read through them again, it sounds like a episode of “Desperate Housewives.” But, we hang on every word and find something there from God, that we might have missed before. We can find parallels to our own lives and situations of today.
I know what it feels like to desperately want a child. With each passing month, I fell deeper into that dark pit. I see now, that God was with me. Faithful through this journey, even if I could not see Him. Then as he blessed me, beyond measure, with three beautiful daughters, I praise Him every day for the blessings in my life.
Thank you, Liz for your inspiration and insight on these stories, God’s stories. It helps to walk through them word by word. I have had the pleasure of seeing you in person, most recently at Canon Beach in Oregon. You are a blessing to so many women with your uplifting love for God. Many blessings to you.
I have read (and loved) Thorn in My Heart. My heart has broken for Leah and I have felt her pain. I have often struggled with being a “people pleaser” and wondering how I could be loved. God is showing me, through many avenues, just how much I CAN and AM loved.
Lizzie, how true this is! I know He loves me and that is the love I cling to. Having not made the best choices in marriage, I have chosen to remain alone. I’m not unhappy or lonely. I have finally reached the point in my life where I know in my heart if God has someone He wants me to be with…He’ll reveal that to me. And like you, I’ll be joyful however life unfolds😊
Liz this message could not have come at a better time in my life!! My husband and I are really struggling in our marriage. We are currently in counseling hoping to salvage what few broken pieces are left. I have learned from Leah that I do not need the approval of my family or friends, only God’s. We used to attend church regularly but have fallen away. This past Sunday I went back to church alone. My husband told me when I got home that I was free to go back to church but not to expect him to. My heart hurts so much and I am so broken that the only hope I have left is God. I wish I could curl up on his lap like a small child, Him wrapping his arms around me and comforting me, telling me “Everything is going to be ok. Just trust Me.”
Thank you so much for this beautiful post. I missed the fact that Leah turned her focus from her husband to God and His love for her. What a beautiful truth for us all to take in. Your photos just increase the beauty of your post. Thank you!
It took Leah so many times before she realized where she should be looking for her blessings. As women, I believe we are often looking for our blessings in how people treat us just as Leah did. God had been blessing Leah, and blessing Leah, but she just couldn’t see it because she was longing for the wrong blessing and not the ones God had in store for her. May we all take the blinders off and see the blessings God has given us instead of longing for things or attention that God knows is not what we need or else that would be our blessing.
How well I can relate to Leah.
I have been married to an angry and abusive man for 29 years.
Also, I have several health conditions that have rendered me disabled and dependent on this man’s Health Insurance.
When I married him, I meant the vows I spoke before My Lord. What I didn’t know was that my husband broke his wedding vows even as he spoke them.
The first time he was abusive and beat and bruised me, he most certainly broke the vows he spoke.
But I had yet to learn this.
Just this past Spring, this man made an attempt to end my life.
During the time I was not breathing or had a heartbeat, I was both on Earth and with Jesus.
Such a remarkable experience! The Lord kindly showed me the story of the Woman at the Well. He explained to me that the man I was living with was NOT my husband.
Then I clearly saw The Lord ‘break’ the cord that I had believed connected me to the abusive husband I had stayed with.
I knew then that God was my Heavenly Husband. He was giving me His permission to leave the earthly man who has never loved me.
Rejection, fear, and pain are all that I’ve ever known.
When I awoke in the emergency room, I was in shock and in critical condition. I learned that I had been left on my bed, while my husband (who knew I was not breathing) had gone downstairs to watch TV.
It was God’s timing that another person stopped by and called 911.
I also learned I had to be resuscitated twice while on the way to the hospital.
I was there for over a week while my body tried to recover from organ failure.
But I did have my Bible. During my stay and after I was released to try to continue to heal, I saw many confirmations that I could take that leap of Faith and divorce the man I have been legally married to.
It was made very clear to me that in the Eyes of The Lord, I had been divorced for a long time.
But seeing Jesus break that cord was really all I needed to know that the only bond I need is the one with my Lord and King.
My divorce will be final by the end of September. I will no longer know how I will get the medications I need to live. Or any other healthcare needs.
But God has never let me down. I have walked with Jesus for over 43 years. I am now 56 and have a chance to actually live a life!
As God provides for the beautiful flowers of the field, I have faith that He will provide for my needs as well.
Praise The Lord!
I have been blackmailed, abused and neglected during this time of the divorce proceedings as well. Yet, I am trusting that God will provide me with a home and the earthly things I need.
I am excited that I may once again join a Church community.
It has always been my life’s goal to live for the Lord.
Now, just like Leah, I will finally live that goal!
No restrictions or condemnation will ever come from my home again!
In fact, I have named my home-to-be, ‘Kathy’s Little House Of Bethel’.
Because just as the stone that Jacob placed and named Bethel, saying “God lives in this place”. So will God live in my home.
Perhaps someday I will be able to have a wooden plaque to hang over my door or on it with the same words to identify my home.
I have followed Liz for 25 years. Reading her books, doing online studies and occasionally hearing her teaching at nearby Churches.
I am so hoping to attend a convention where Liz will be in October.
I am bringing a young friend who will be driving but has yet to meet Jesus. This will be a wonderful event and blessing for both of us!
We have both known rape and abuse by men. We are both a Leah.
I wanted to share this because I feel The Holy Spirit guiding me to do so.
Qualifying for a book would be a wonderful bonus!
Because of the kindness of my young friend and the needs she may have, should I receive a copy, I want to give it to her.
(Her name is Kaitlyn, but she goes by her nickname, Kai.)
Thank you for allowing me to share a small part of my story.
No woman ever deserves to live a life of abuse and misery.
God is my Keeper. He is my Shade. He is protecting me from evil. The Lord is watching over my comings and goings
now and forevermore. Psalm 121
My heart weeps for what you’ve gone through. It’s October as I read your testimony and your divorce is hopefully final. I pray ”Kathy’s Little House of Bethel” has materialized in a marvelous way and Jesus has given you a place of comfort beyond your wildest dreams. May you see yourself as the adored and longed-for bride you truly are.
God bless you!
No, my divorce is not final. My ‘husband’ has continued to draw it out. Honestly, I have no idea when I will be free.
I have had to live upstairs in my room since July.
But thank you for reminding me to hold on to my faith!
Kathy (not Beard anymore!) Henderson
Your focus on God’s love for me was so refreshing for my soul! Hope in the midst of life’s struggles – whether husband, wayward children, parents gone on to heaven… Thank you for your heart for the Lord and for us women who need and appreciate you! God is working through you!
Thank you Liz for making these biblical women come alive. I love how God sees and comforts them all!
I’ve not read these books, but I would sure like to. Leah has always been a bit of a mystery. How did she handle knowing she was not her husband’s first choice? She felt unloved, unwanted and detached all those years and finally, praised God when Judah was born. Incredibly strong character. Thanks for the opportunity to win your books.
Dear Liz, oh WOW is all I can say. This is so precious and you are so gifted to share it in such a wonderful way. I am so glad that I am loved by the One that really matters. I lost my husband of 32 years exactly 4 years ago but I am so happy to know that God can fill all those empty spaces. Blessings in abundance. Love Louise.
Thank you Liz for telling the stories of the women in the Bible in such a way we can relate to and learn from. You have a way of looking into these women’s hearts and sharing their experiences that truly inspires me and gives me hope and encouragement to continue on my journey knowing God is by my side. Thank you for sharing your talent and words of wisdom with us!
Thank you for the timely reminder! It is a blessing to know that God sees me, and I can worship Him even when circumstances may not be what I want them to be, finding joy and acceptance in Him.
Jesus really IS ENOUGH! That alone has gotten me through the last several years in which my family has experienced loss after loss. I look around and wonder how people that don’t know Christ get up every day.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be a wife and mother. Like Leah, all the boys were interested in my beautiful yonger sister. In fact, one of my classmates called our house at the time of my senior prom, and I thought he was going to ask me to the prom. He asked my sister; she said yes. She had a date to my prom and I went solo. She married and had three beautiful daughters; I got to be present when each one was born. I desperately wanted the same life she had! However, I was looking in all the wrong places, making a TON of mistakes on my own in the process. I wasted so many years that way. FINALLY, at the the age of 32 I rededicated my life to God. I told him that I would wait for Him to show me who He had chosen for my mate. I told Him, if my mate hadn’t been born yet, I’d wait. I told Him that, if my mate was in a different state or country, I’d willingly move. I then told Him, if His plan for me was to never marry, I’d be okay with that. He’d be enough for me for the rest of my days.
I met my future husband briefly, right before I rededicated my life to God, but neither he nor I were ready for a relationship. I found out later, that after he met me, he started going back to church and rededicated his life to God.
Almost three years exactly from the day we first met, we had our first date. In less than 5 months later, we were married in 2004. I was 35 years old. We conceived and then lost our first child in 2005. In 2007, we were asked to adopt a 2 year old boy. The final adoption hearing was 5 days shy of a year later in 2008. We kept trying to conceive, but with no success. We are in the process of trying to adopt a little boy (7 years old) and a little girl (6 years old) who are siblings.
None of it would be happening right had I not landed in my Leah place all those years ago.
It truly is a JOY to open God’s Word with you, month by month, book by book! If chosen as the winner of your two books, it would be a blessing. I will love to read them and share them with my sister, mother, mother-in-law, and sisters-in-law.
Thank you doing this give-away. May God bless you for being such a blessing to so many.
~Talitha “Tally” Waugh
A few minutes ago I was angry with myself for once again falling short on the way I am suppose to live my life and I was telling myself that God will never give my what I have been pleading with him to give me because I don’t deserve it. In that moment of self pity I opened up my emails and saw the email you sent saying Hang on to Hope. Right away I started crying. God knows that I am the kind of person that he has to make it obvious that he is speaking to me, and in that moment he used your email to let me that it does not matter what my future holds all that matters is that I have God’s love. Thank you for saying exactly what I needed to hear.
Thank you Liz for your “straight from the soul” gift of HIS word. I am always lifted up when I read your post, and it seems it’s just what I need every time. Never give up and never lose hope is my mantra for this next month. A time of transition of seasons, just as our lives are. And then to have a novel about Scotland??? I am so thrilled!! Scotland is at the top of my bucket list to visit!
Leah struggled and doubted, while continuing to hope for love.
But God was always with her and loved her for herself.
Her eyes were blinded by her sadness.
I too have failed to lift the veil and see God smiling down at me with a glorious love for his precious daughter, Priscilla.
I was created to be loved, and to love others unconditionally.
It will be so great to see you again!! I first met in Greensboro NC, many years ago! I will see you in Concord NC on October 26th!
I never thought to see Leah this way to sense her heartache and despair even as she loved her sons. Her acceptance and reassurance of God’s faithful love brings sweet peace to my heart. I just rocked my little grandson to sleep so I can literally feel the presence of Leah this morning as I read this. Knowing how the new smiles of a baby boy bring such joy and how Leah’s focus on that brought her realization of God’s goodness to her, rings true to me. We so often take for granted that a new life growing and coming forth is simple and straightforward. But as we and so many others experience, childbirth can be frightening and not a guarantee of a healthy baby. We are grateful for this healthy growing baby, but our heart aches for others who experience loss or health challenges when a child is born. Thank you for pointing out Leah’s story and how she is a role model for all mothers and family members to never take for granted the blessing of a healthy baby.
I have been living a Leah life for the last year. When my husband got sick, doctors screwed up his care and he died right before Christmas, I cry to Godfor strength. I still have a 14 year old son who is devastated and very depressed. I have no control over circumstances so I cling to God. I know He will work things for His glory.
Thank you for sharing these beautiful words.
My Bible study group is currently finishing up “The Girl’s Still Got It”. You point out so many things that we missed before in the story. We love your videos, and agreed that we want a copy of the LIzzie Revised Version of the Bible (lol). I would love to win these two books!
That is so eye-opening to look at Leah that way! I knew God showed her favor by blessing her with sons, but I never looked at it from her perspective. I’ve been in those shoes, and have someone dear to me in a similar place. And it’s so awesome that Jesus came through that line! I would love to win these books, to read and to share with whomever God puts in my path that could use that encouragement as well.
God bless you for all you do in your ministry!
Liz, your writing makes these women come alive in my eyes AND heart. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and love for God with all of us. Thank you for teaching us through your writings. I’ve learned so much only to find I still have much to learn. Please keep writing and sharing!
I love the story of Leah and would live to read more!
Thank you for sharing your story of hope, the love you have for Bill that you were ok if he never called you again. That is remarkable to me. We want to hold on so tightly to the people we love, yet at times we don’t hang onto the love and promises of our Lord. Leah, after all the rejection found peace in our one and only true love, Jesus Christ. Her story makes me even more hopeful that when things don’t go the way I would like, it’s ok, because God will make it right for His glory.
Thank you so much, sometimes the Lord tells you exactly what you need to hear, when you need to hear it the most, this season of our lives draws us ever closer to the Love of the Lord and reminded me of what I have always known, I so enjoy your books 📚 Thank You so much, not sure you realize how deeply the Lord works through you with great affection Vickie Kurtz
Leah is one of my favorite Bible personalities. Her heartache while waiting.
I appreciate your writing and insight into the lives of Women of the Bible. Each year I reread Women of Christmas and Women of Easter. New insights each time.
It has been said many times that Christianity is misogynistic in its view and treatment of women. However, I think people miss how very much God loved the women of the Bible. When you think about God’s blessing Abraham and Sarah with Isaac, Abraham had other sons besides Ishmael. It was Sarah who had no sons. Then we see Leah being blessed with Judah and even Rachel who, although loved by her husband, felt less than her sister until God blessed her with a son. And the theme continues throughout the New Testament. We are fortunate to be women in God’s service.
Deep joy – No matter the circumstance and our perceived un-loveliness: embracing the simple truth that Creator and Savior God loves me deeply and relishing in that simple truth.
(Instead of purchased flowers on the counter given by someone who loves me, relishing that God permitted the roses outdoor to bloom gloriously for me). 😊
Liz, I love your unique perspective. I had never considered how painful Jacob’s rejection had to have been for Leah. I have several of your books and love them all!! Thank you for sharing God’s Word in such a real way. God Bless, hope you’re doing well.
Praise God for this devotional and the timing! The last couple of days have been spent listening to the broken heart of a woman who does not believe her husband of 35 years truly loves her and perhaps never has. She was already wounded by an abusive childhood and has had years of counseling where she has been told the best she can hope for is to manage her pain, not heal it. Your devotion radiated the power of God and was filled with so much hope! I could not wait to forward this devotion to her. God has blessed her with two wonderful children, and I believe God will use Leah’s story to encourage her heart. God bless you!!
Thank you Liz for this post. I needed to read this. I felt this was meant solely for “me”. It made me realize that I HAVE been loved my entire life, not by my ex-husbands nor my mother, but by the One I had always turned to in my darkest hours, in my deepest pain …God, my Heavenly Father. I look back and now realize how I have always reached out to Him and felt comforted, felt loved, felt wanted. You made me realize through it all that God is number one in my life. He’s my Creator, my Comforter, my Confidant…my Father, who will always love me unconditionally. Thank you!
Love the Scottish historical novels! Also My Heart’s in the Lowlands. Reading it for a second time.
My Women’s Bible Study this year is Every Woman Matters: The God Who Sees Me. We will be studying the nameless and faceless women of the Bible. Leah is nameless, but felt lovedless. A great addition to our study. Never thought of the unloved women that the Lord sees and meets their needs. Even if I don’t get picked, thank you for this wonderful study to help us look to the Lord for the fulfillment of all our needs.
Thank you so much for this post about Leah. It was so encouraging to me. I lost my husband of thirty years last February and then suffered a stroke myself in March. So I needed an encouraging word from the Lord! and you provided that word. I always receive so much hope through your ministry. I saw that you’ll be in our area in December so two of my friends and I purchased the VIP tickets to see you and Anita Renfro. I’m so looking forward to Two Ladies Laughing Out Loud. What a treat! I pray the Lord gives you strength and many more years to carry His word.
Liz, God is good! Would love to read more regarding Leah! Even during the hard times He never leaves our side and provides for us tenderly!
I always thought of Leah as whiny and complaining, me at times! It is wonderful to see there was hope for her and for me! We can praise God in all circumstances that comes from a grateful heart! Thanks for the opportunity to win!
I haven’t looked at Leah this way before. I love it! I think we have all been there at times. Thank you for sharing.
It is so hard for us to remember all the good He has done for us when we are going through difficult times! I love how the women in the bible are strong and devoted to their calling. I need to focus on the big things (*GOD) and praise Him for the love He continues to show me every day.
You made me see Leah differently than I have thought of her before.
This a a new fresh look at Leah for me also! I have always loved Leahs story and this makes it even more special to me. I Love it!
I haven’t read these 2 books yet. Excited
to see if I get lucky!
Praise God!! He is enough!! Leah was blessed beyond measure!! So are we!!
OH MY GOODNESS!!! What perfect timing. My daughter’s name is Leah and this is her story. However I’m s praying after her second divorce that God would give her that man that is just like Him. Please pray with me on that. Love your devotions each month Liz.
Liz, Reading through this post reminded me of doing this particular study 20+ years ago. As a fledgling Christian, I thought studying a short few verses might be a waste of time! Boy, did God and you prove me wrong! I have often thought of this study in my spiritual growing years and feel it is time to revisit again. Thank you for bringing God’s word to folks with such insight and humor!!
Fortunately, I was able to realize at a young age that God loves me, even when I feel unlovely or have done something that makes me less than desirable. In second grade I missed my school bus home and knew I would be in a lot of trouble. My teacher took me home, and in my heart I sang the words “No matter what happens He will care for me” during the entire drive time. It was reassuring to me then and
continues to be what keeps me hopeful when my life seems to be all skewed and out of sorts. My God loves me and will always take care of me!
I liked the story because it reminds me to be grateful for my three sons. At times I feel less of a mother because I didn’t have a daughter to share my life with as my sister and friends do. I love to be reminded that my Lord and Savior is with me and I will be ok living my life with his guidance.
Love this post. Feeling so dejected and unloved because I can’t find a job. Feeling a failure because I am not a good housekeeper. But God….God loves me and He does not see me as a failure or unloved or unchosen. Thank you Liz. I really needed this today.
Leah… so me. Now I need to work hard on learning this lesson. Been so unhappy for so many years. Divorce does that to ya. He had another woman, so that broke me. Thank you Liz for your lessons. Praying for myself this time. I know God loves me, I just need to leave it all at his feet.
Once again we are reminded by you that God loves us all. He is our head and gives us much,joy,love, and peace. He blankets us with His comfort all the time and especially when we feel down. Thank you for being a true daughter of the King.
It is funny how things happen. I am in a Bible Study with the book Seamless and today’s reading was the story of Leah. Coincident? I think not! God is watching me!
Sometimes we seem to hang on to things that are not good for us. But, we are never to give up hope. Thank you for the reminder. God wants only the best for us and that means letting go of things that are not. Leah is a good example of finally “getting it”. God is good all the time.
LOVE this post on Leah! Just what I needed for today!
To come to that Leah place…to realize I am loved by God, and that is enough…is something I have to revisit often. Always a good reminder…just wish it were ingrained and i believed it ALL. THE. TIME.
My sister Leah had shown me that it takes several attempts to get it right, but God is always faithful & waiting with open arms to embrace me!
I too was an unloved wife, and now divorced for 12 years and still trying to put things back together. I have come to know the Lord in a deep and meaningful way. He is everything I need.
I would love to read these books!
I am fully LOVED by God !! I no longer feel the need to seek out love from a man, I rely on God’s love and grace. Thank you for your commentary on Leah’s revelation as it reflects what we all should seek, God perfect LOVE. How wonderful that is. May God continue to speak through you Liz and continue healing your body.
Ah, the story of Leah resonates in me. I also looked to a man for love, my father. It took me years and growing maturity to realize that I didn’t need this earthly fathers love, but the love of my Heavenly Father. It pained me to know that my father’s addiction to alcohol was greater than his love for me. However, God’s love surrounded me always. I was able to love him and see a glimpse of my earthly father’s love when he was in hospice care. I thank God, my Father, daily for his grace, mercy and love. The Father’s love for me and all of us is beyond my comprehension. Blessings~~
I thank you all you so freely give. Your study is what I used 15 years ago at my first in home bible study. You help all of us grow closer to God and to each other. We worked our way through 3 of your studies.
Never in my remembrance have I heard this taught like this. What a beautiful insight into the life of Leah when most of the time we just feel pity for her. It’s so rich to know that she set an example for all of us – to seek the Lord and know beyond any doubt that we are loved by Him!
Thank you, Liz, for the reminder that even tho all around us fails and crumbles, God is still there and constantly loving us just as we are. We need to do nothing to earn His love or to keep it.
Thank you for your insight… it comes at a time that I really needed the reassurance that God truly loves me!… me just as I am!
Thank you!.. dale
Liz, I have read all of your books through the years, but I especially loved the Thorn in My Heart series. I used your Bad Girl books in my Bible Study groups which really helped many of the women involved.
I always look forward to any new material you publish.
I met you quite a few years ago in Philadelphia at a Women of Faith Festival. What a thrill it was. May God bless you and keep you in His care.
Liz I have read few books that I check out from the Library enjoy reading them it lets me know Gods is all ways there for us.
This post was such a sweet reminder to me not to complain or be sad about the life i have when some days are painful. Ive loved and recommended Thorn in my Heart so many times, i May keep for my daughter or share with a friend
Love the story of Leah. She persevered even though her husband did not love her, but God did!!! Glad you are doing well!!
Dear Liz, You have such an annointing with words to help us understand scriptures. It’s always refreshing to read your break down of verse by verse and see your wonderful interpretations. Like Leah, often times it is our own thoughts about a situation that hold us back, not even realizing how much we are loved and given grace each and every day. Thank the Lord for his wonderful gifts he gives us each day, may we all see them more clearly.
I am so so guilty of looking at what I don’t have instead of what I do have. I have prayed for wives for our sons for a LONG time now and we have no one in sight still. They are 28 and 30 now. It hurts to think they may never have that kind of love in their lives. But their is another side and that is where I should be looking. They are not with the wrong person and that would be worse. I would love to win autographed copies of your book.
I feel I am a Leah. After having five children and never getting the attention I craved from my husband, I am now on my own. My children are grown, and the only relationships I crave now are the ones I have with Jesus, my children, and grandchildren. Hope is my chosen word in place of a New Year’s resolution. After having cancer left me disabled, I went into a depression and despair that left me hopeless. However, my relationship with God has gotten stronger because of it, and He alone has taken my less given me hope in its place. My prayers are with you, Liz. Thank you for that beautiful devotion.
I love each and everyone of your books. You are such an encouragement.
What a story..Thank you for sharing ..I thank God for loving me…
love the short, yet insightful, sprinkled with those beautiful flowers….reflections.
Thank you for breaking down this story…it is beautiful
It’s encouragign that Leah didn’t thank God until her fourth child was born. It sometimes takes me a while to see what God has done to bless me so I’m slow to be thankful, just like Leah. I’m grateful that God loves me anyway and I can turn to him in my times of discouragement and uncertainty.
Standing here in my kitchen reading this when I should be making school lunches. And marvelling at the gems of blessing that God has tucked away in His word. In all my years I hadn’t realised what Leah’s story had to tell me.
Feeling the ordinariness when we’re constantly told to ‘be something’. I need to be reminded that what God has blessed me with is more than enough. When I have Jesus, what more can the world offer me. Thank you for Leah’s story. I’d love to read of the Scottish Leah 😊
(And by the way, the flowers are beautiful!)
Thank you for the hope reminder. I’m struggling today.
God’s timing is amazing and awesome, and leaves me without doubt that He knows what is happening inside my heart and mind. I have been going through a difficult time with a chronic health condition being problematic and severe depression. I have been improving, thanks to the help of some wise and loving Christian women, and had had some great encouragement and learning from your book ‘Embrace Grace’, which helped to bring me back to a fuller life with Christ. But yesterday had another setback. Then this blog appeared in my email this morning, with the title ‘Hang onto hope’. As hard as I am finding the journey, knowing that God is ALWAYS with me, loving me, whether or not I am with Him at the time, is so encouraging. He never gives up on us.
In OT culture, wives never had guarantee of love or respect. Leah’s father, Laban, had neither for her. He broke his promise to Jacob to wed Rachel and dumped Leah on him instead. To his credit, Jacob honored the marriage vows and did not reject Leah outright. Please do not assume that Jacob treated her badly. He was also a victim of Laban’s trickery. [Pssst … Jacob was the front line tricker to his brother before meeting Laban … the “big picture” is absolutely multi layered!]
Moving on to a bit more history about Judah: as an adult and after the death of his son, he did not fulfill the customary duty for his younger son to provide children to his widowed daughter in law. However, on a trip, he enjoyed the favors of a prostitute. Turns out, the harlot was his daughter in law in disguise. Tamar took matters in her own hands and targeted Judah to produce a child. When the truth came out later, Judah pronounced that she was more righteous than he. That illegitimate son Perez and his mother Tamar are both listed in Matthew 1 as part of Jesus genealogy. Choices have consequences.
ALL choices have consequences. Fetch back to God’s original “marriage plan” in Genesis [Adam and Eve] was ONE man and ONE woman. It was NEVER 1 man and several women. Break God’s law at any point and the consequences will follow like falling dominoes. His grace and forgiveness can restore wholeness to fellowship with Him but the messy-ness of consequences still follow. His Word provides MANY examples for us to learn from …. such as Jacob, Judah, Miriam, Ruth and more. Ohhhh, that we’d remember to choose behaviors in like manner to His heart, His design.
Leah’s story is such a good reminder to us to look outside ourselves to see God’s blessings, even if we are in a chapter that is difficult.
I never thought of myself as a Leah until I read this. After being blessed with 2 wonderful children I finally realized that the fairy tail romance I so longer for was never going to happen. I came to realize that the Lord is my savior and loves me with an unconditional love. Only through Him is there true love and happiness. The Lord blessed me with two wonderful children, a good job and home. I can still show God’s love to others and maybe one day my husband will come to know Christ as I have and be happy too.
I love this Leah’s story because it is a great reminder that we should only look to God for fulfillment! It’s something I am learning in this season. Praise God!
Hope is something we all need but often lose sight of. Thank you for reminding us of how much God loves us, despite our circumstances sometimes.
I have enjoyed many of your books, and am reading Whence Came a Prince right now, again. I intend to read the others, perhaps in order!
you are so good with your words, you are so gifted!
Yet again such timely words you have written. I need to find that place where I am loved by the most High and my worth is found in Him alone. Thank you for this….
Interesting view of Leah! I’d love to win these books! I have loved other books of yours that I’ve read!
There is so much to learn from Leah, and from your thoughts about her, Liz!! Thanks for taking us through each word and helping us understand her thoughts and feelings better. Love your books and I’d love to win these two! God bless you!!
My good friend just forwarded this to me. I have all 4 books in the Scottish series and I was enthralled from the first word to the last. They are among my all-time favorite books I will never willingly part with! I’d love to win “Slightly Bad Girls”, and if I should win, I would give the “Thorn in my Heart” to someone I love and spread the wonder. Thank you for this post. I want to subscribe to your blog!
As always, lovely post, Liz. Your highlighting of God’s words impacts me so. I’m in awe of your words to your girlfriend after your date with Bill. Proper priorities ~ and God honored them! (So glad.) Took me some years beyond that time to learn how much God loves me and that THAT is enough.
Leah’s quiet patience speaks to me.
Thanks for this & for your books.
I can truly relate to Leah as I’ve always felt unloved. I pray to get to the point she got to in just being ok that God loves me. I would love to read both these books!!!
Leah is such a great reminder that God never forgets anyone of us, He loves us no matter how much we may feel “left-behind” by someone we have loved, or the world in general. God is always good!
I love how you share God’s word with us and am so thankful for you! As a mom I pray regularly for my children to always know that God loves them and for them to know the God who loves them!
Like Leah, we must put our faith in God and he will see us through the darkness. In my prayers to the Lord, I thank him for everything I have and for never leaving my side.
Liz, thank you so much for the reminder of Leah’s plight. She was truly a faithful woman to her God. Many of us have suffered rejection at some point in our lives, some of it brought on by our own guilt. But what a great reminder that we are loved by God.
P.S. You look great! I love your “do”.
Liz, the ladies of my Bible study group have met you and we love your studies, your fiction writing and you! Reading your email about Leah and hearing the words “that she was seen by God” struck a note in me because of the IF study I am doing called Arise. It is about seeing the marginalized people around us in our community and the world, knowing that every person on this earth was created in God’s image , and discovering actions that we can take to give them a voice. You have given the Women of the Bible voices, so that we may learn from them. Love you and are glad you are doing well. I am an eight year survivor.
Leah remained faithful to God even though Jacob loved Rachel more. God rewarded her with a long life and children. Through it all, we need to remain faithful. God will take care of us. I am learning that.
Thanks for the reminder that God loved Leah and He loves us. Man will always disappoint us. God is always faithful and He is sufficient for all our needs. Liz, God made you a wonderful storyteller. Looking forward to Thorn in My Heart.
Leah’s story is a great reminder that no matter where we are in life, whether with someone or alone, God is always there and will love us no matter what. How encouraging and affirming to know that He loves me no matter what I do, how I feel or how I behave. My heart’s desire is to be a woman like Leah, a woman who relies solely on God for everything I need.
Liz, thank you so much for the reminder of the source of true love. It helps ease the pain of feeling alone and not worthy since my husband has left me for the second time.
God alone is the source and the One to turn to and the One to focus on. Leah is such a great example of someone who must have at times felt very much alone and unworthy. But I know God was with her and He is with me. Thank you, Father!
I needed to be reminded of the Leah story today. I was feeling discouraged, and it’s just a reminder to look up….He hears! He knows! He loves me!
Leah reminds us to take time to thank God for making us the women we are. Resist the temptation to think about relying on what others think of us for our sense of well-
I love reading your posts on the women in the Bible!
It is hard to imagine my sister and I being married to the same man. She would be the beauty and I would be Leah. I can just imagine the jealousy, rivalry, and the heated emotions that would be evolve from this relationship. God would have to do a work in both our hearts so that we could be a civil family. This story gives me hope to hang on and a garment of praise for a spirit of despair.
I love the story of Rachel and Leah but never looked at Leah this way before. Thank you for the teaching and seeing His word in a new light.
I have purchased a number of your books but I do not have Thorn In My Heart. I would love to win a copy of it from you along with Slightly Bad Girls of the Bible. I have enjoyed all of your books that I have read. Your books help the Bible characters come alive. Thanks. Nancy
Thanks so much for your comments on Leah and HOPE. The Jacob and Rachel story is so often cited as THE romantic story of the O.T., but I wonder if Rachel loved Jacob as much as he loved her. Her feelings for Jacob are not mentioned as much as his are for her. Leah, however, seemed hopelessly in love with Jacob. Sadly, her love was unrequited, but with faith, she kept hoping. Better yet, she came to know the value of God’s love for her. His gift of four sons who are part of the “Twelve Tribes” are proof of that love, and of His wisdom and grace! Of the two, Rachel and Leah, Leah is the one buried next to Isaac, along with the other patriarchs, and Sarah and Rebekah, in a position of permanent prominence awarded by God Himself, reminding us “Now faith is confidence in what we HOPE for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 (NIV )
Realizing you are loved by God is such an amazing feeling!
As I read your account of Leans s tory, coupled with your own thoughts, I was reminded how this was a good example of things coming about in our lives in God’s own good time. He knows what’s best for us, but as our wise parent, he realizes that we need to sometimes work things through in our minds. And that takes time, and often many ways for us to experience the learning process. So, in God’s own good time, right?
I love how you told the story of Leah, I need to remember that I am loved even when I don’t feel loved.
I absolutely love Thorn in my Heart and the whole series! This was the first book I read that introduced me to you 🙂 I kept finding myself think-it doesn’t say that in the Bible, and then I would go to the story and find that a lot of those little details really were there!! It made me read the Bible and many of my favorite stories in a whole new way!
I have been walking with the Lord for some 37yrs. I have 4 sons 2 from each (bad) marriage and at the age of 70 I’m still trying to get to that place of God being enough…..what else can I say, pray for me please.
Love this story. But how awful to share your husband with your sister and maids.But God reward her with her sons specially with Judah. I believe even if we go through hard times God will reward us and help you a through,
God is enough!
Liz thank you for your inspirational words! My daughter sounds a lot like Leah! She is blessed with 2 sons, yet still feels unloved, unfulfilled and forgotten by God. Im going to share this with her in the hopes that she reaches her “Leah” place soon!
Thanks for your uplifting posts. You always give me new insights on stories I have read from the Bible many times. Likewise with the story of Leah. So many times I have felt unloved but deep down I have always known that God loves me unconditionally all the time. Such a good feeling!
This is the second time today I have heard from someone to praise God for the things I have – 4 lovely children- instead of what I don’t have- a loving husband. I don’t blame God for my lousy husband, but I definitely could be more grateful for what he has given me and remember that I am loved by others. Thank you for reminding me, Liz.
I was “losing” hope, tonight until I went on line to contact a friend, and she had your post about Leah! God has renewed my heart and mind through your faithful writing about Leah, right now. I’m really glad that God had you write about her, and that He had my friend send me the information. Otherwise, I would have felt more alone, and yet, now, I have received God’s love in two tangible ways. God alone, knew of my sufferings, tonight, and He had my brother call me, too! Amazing Grace. God’s special care in two different ways. I cannot wait to tell my friend how God used her and you, to help me through a trying time. I am so glad God uses ordinary individuals to do extraordinary things for His Glory. May God Richly Bless You, Amen.
When I was in Elementary school there was a girl in my class named Leah, I thought that was a beautiful name. I told my mother if I ever had a daughter I was going to name her Leah, She told me I couldn’t because Leah was the girl who stole her sister’s husband. I was so disappointed I didn’t want my daughter to have a name that would make people not like her. Thinking back to those Sunday school lessons that was what we were taught, the romantic story of how Jacob worked for the woman he loved and how he was tricked. We weren’t taught about Leah’s hardship and loneliness. . It seemed there was a better lesson that should have been taught. Thank you for teaching the real romance of this story, how an obedient daughter became a faithful daughter to her heavenly father. I see her as whole different person. I wasn’t blessed with a daughter to name Leah. I was blessed with “Only a boy named David” who is loved just as much. .
Very timely for me right now ! I have a new view of Leah. Needed the reminder that God is all I need and that I am loved. Thank you!
I always thought Leah must have been bitter because she was badly used by her father and her husband, and we don’t see much love coming from her sister, either. You’ve helped me see her story a little differently. And I never picked up on the fact that Jesus came from Leah’s side. What a blessing for one who was “unloved” by some, but much loved by God.
God is enough.
If I would just sit still and listen to God speak to me through his word when he tells me of his live for me. So many times I turn to other things when I know he is right there never changing.
You write the BEST blog posts!
So thankful for the encouragement and your blog posts.
Hope is what keeps me afloat, moving back once again towards my Lord.
Leah’s place…..a great reminder of Gods love.
Leah’s story reminds me of God’s grace and love.
I am an old woman but still seeking God’s love and forgiveness. Your teaching and transparency are refreshing and encouraging. God bless you, Liz!
Liz – I am so delighted to have received these devotional thoughts on Leah’s life! I have tended to focus on how Jacob was tricked by his father-in-law and how unfair this was to Jacob. I seemed to pass over Leah’s plight and her progression of faith in the God who sees and loves us with an everlasting love.
It never occurred to me that Leah is the bloodline from which the Lion of Judah – Jesus was born!!!!!
I love your personal trajectory about meeting your husband, Bill and that you would be content ….even if he never called again, but he must have! He was and is the man you prayed for . ( I met him and talked with him at the book table in Fremont, Oh. this spring. He didn’t say he was Bill, but as we chatted, I said something like, “You must be Bill.” He of course, did not deny the truth! )
I conclude by saying thanks, Liz for helping me to mine the treasures and promises of God’s Word.
Your words have resonated with me and I am grateful that I am loved unconditionally by our Heavenly Father. He calls me beautiful and says there is no flaw in me. What treasured words to hold on to like Leah. Thank you for sharing your words of encouragement from the scriptures and making them come alive to us. Even as I grow older, this story of God’s Grace for Leah is always a great reminder of how loved we are!
Liz, I live your heart for women-ALL women; the good, the bad, the ugly! You have a God-given way of touching each of us with your writing. Hugs to you!
I so relate to Leah. Her story gives me hope and reminds me of the One who loves me as I am. Your series based on Leah’s story is one my all-time favorites. I’ve read it many, many times.
Loved this story and thank you for reminding me of it. I read about Leah 10 years ago in the Red Tent book and it was a blessing to visit again this amazing woman. I can so identify with her and that’s what makes it come to life. Praising God for the blessings he has brought to my life.
Oh my goodness! Isn’t it wonderful how we can learn about a person in the bible through someone else’s insight. I love this story about Leah. We try to make make our lives, well, ours. What we should be doing is making our lives His. Because He made us and we/I will forever praise Him. Thank you Liz for your beautiful words, and flowers!
As the unloved wife, I have been learning for some time that God’s love is more than enough.
…she said, “This time…” Genesis 29:35
This time she chose wisely. Maybe not the other times, but this time she got it right. This time she turned to God, knowing she couldn’t change Jacob, but she could change herself.
This is where I am now. I got to the point of despairing after seeing seemingly little to no results from the prayers for my loved ones. My spirit felt prodded to begin to pray more fervently to the Lord to change me – my heart, my thoughts, my words, my reactions. I am encouraging my Bible Study friends to do the same. My hope is that He will fill me so full that others see the difference He makes in me and want Him fully, too. Thank you, Liz for the reminder of Leah’s journey to find that God is truly enough, truly all we need. Looking forward to seeing you in Jacksonville, IL on September 7.
What a beautiful and timely post. So many of us rely on others to define who we are. I slip into that mindset so many times I often don’t notice what I am doing. Thank you for a chance to remember the only ONE who matters…the love that is ours always.
Liz, what a beautiful reflection on Leah! We were sharing on Women of Valor on our Facebook page and we didn’t choose Leah as a woman to speak on, but wow she was brave and found her voice through God. Thank you for sharing this. Love your books and your blogs! ❤
An encourager. Truth. An apt description of your writings/teachings. Thank you for teaching us well!
Love this story of Leah. With tears in my eyes, a warm feeling permeated through me as I was reminded that God sees and knows our feelings of obscurity and aloneness in life.
He has blessed my life richly. He is enough!!
Such depth in God’s Word. Thank you Liz for reminding us to praise Him.
Keeping our eyes on the prize–thanks for helping so much with that with this beautifully written explanation that I, too, had never realized about Leah. God sees our tears and cares.
As always, with Leah’s story, you have made me cry!! And I love you and thank you for it 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖
Even though you translated Leah to Leana, I have yet to have my “Leah Moment”…
Life is hard, especially with my (ex) husband not being around, and not being here to help with the kids… It hurts.
I’m trying to keep my faith together, but it seems like everything keeps getting piled on top of me just when I have a moment to BREATHE!
So, yeah, I’m just trying to get through one moment at a time… But thank you for the beautiful reminder – and the tears 😢💖😢💖😢💖
Recently our “nest” became empty after 27 1/2 years of having children in our home. We have been blessed with 3 amazing souls ❤️ My husband and I are very different people and I have been concerned about what we will share when the children are all moved out. What I learned from Leah, and what the Lord has been telling me, is my husband is a good person. He is a good provider. I need to accept the blessings and stop fantasizing about some make believe life like the ones in the movies. My joy comes from being loved by the Lord. The Lord will continue to show me the purpose of my life.
Liz has a unique insight to Biblical people. Even though some had very difficult lives, we can be encouraged by their faithfulness to God and by God’s faithfulness to his people.
Oh Liz! Praise God for your health! Praise God that you are still encouraging women (including myself) and reminding us that no matter or circumstances, or mistakes that God is enough!!! That God sees us, that God loves us! That He allows us to learn and start fresh every morning, like Leah “starting fresh” with Judah! Praise God for his Grace and that His Mercies are new every morning! Thank you Liz. Keep sharing those wonderful words God gives you! Would love to own these books! But oh my, look at all these replies!
Being a woman in her fifties, I am still working toward my Leah moment. I’m close but in order to fully know who I am and whose I am I need to embrace fully that God says I’m enough.
Thank you for these words about Leah and hope. The reminder to praise God for my blessings was needed today.
I’ll always hold dear our trip through Scotland and the precious lessons learned through Leah, Rebecca, and Jacob, aka Leana, Rose, and Jamie. 😊
I truly look forward to reading about the “Bad Girls” because you bring them to life in a fresh and real way that I can connect with. I laugh, sometimes cry and always finish my study convicted and inspired to change.
Thank you~ you are a blessing to me.
In many ways I can relate to Leah. Not because of my husband, he loves me unconditionally and is my rock, but in other relationships I have always felt like I had to struggle for acceptance. I finally know that God is enough. You have always been an inspiration.
Leah- God had a plan in spite of man and woman! Praying that I trust God for his Plan and not what I think it should be!
How wonderful to realize that God loves you even when I don’t feel very loveable. Leah was a real person not someone made up in ficton. Thank you Liz for your insite. I can’t wait to see you again in person on Sept 28 & 29th. God bless you.
Thank you for sharing this!
Thank you!I loved seeing that Judah was Leah’s son she praised God for.
What I love most about this story of Leah is God’s faithfulness as she worked through her own hurt to get to that place of faith. Sometimes faith comes slowly, and God’s okay with that.
For years now I’ve been married to a man who suffers with drug addiction. I,of course, didn’t realize this when I married him (Love is blind, ha ha). In fact, it wasn’t until my first child was 6 months old that I was slapped in the face with the heartbreaking truth of his addiction. (I’ll just say that he, being in the medical profession, fell into the lure of opioids , which some say is one of the hazards of the job). Anyhoo, I searched the scriptures, looking for that scripture – “thou shalt kick that drug addicted husband out to the curb-eth.” I could not find it anywhere!!! So, I stayed. I’ve supported my husband in and out of rehabs, lifted him up in between jobs, been his helpmate time and time again (I’m going to have SO MANY JEWELS in my crown, Liz!!!! Lol). I’m leading up to something here, and I’m certainly not saying that this path is right for every woman (follow God’s will in your own life as best you can), nor do I mean to discount the MANY (other) blessings the LORD has given me (two wonderful sons first off!) , but just to say that the story of Leah has resonated within me for many years.
The feelings of being unloved by my earthly husband, let’s face it, his first love (his Rachel) was his “meds”. NOTHING , sadly, was more important to him. But , that was when , GOD stepped in!! God showed me HE will be to me what “ole what’s his name” is not! The Lord will be the father to my (basically orphaned-by their dad) children!!! Hallelujah!
One day, I was at a church function, (with my sons, and my earth husband was absent as usual) a close family member made a comment to me something to the tune of “it’s like you don’t even have a husband.”
Oh ho! I corrected her on the spot!
Excuse me but : The LORD is my husband!!!
“ For your Maker is your husband
the Lord Almighty is his name,
the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer;
he is called the God of all the earth.
The Lord will call you back
as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit—
a wife who married young,
only to be rejected,” says your God.” (Isaiah 54:5,6).
Yes indeed! And I can remember Liz, when I first saw an ad for your book “Thorn in my Heart”. Lol, I was in the Christian book store and I saw Leana’s face on a poster and I KNEW!! I knew this was my favorite bible story (that I had leaned on for years!) come , well , to life!!! Thank you so much Liz, for penning all the heart wrenching emotions, heartbreak AND the joy that comes in the morning! This has been my favorite book series of all time and I’ve read it more than once! Lol.
I didn’t realize there was more about Leah in your slightly bad girls book! Can wait to read it
Much love to you!!
I love the thorn in my heart series. I read them about 10 years ago. It’s time to read them again!!
I love the story of Leah. It doe remind us that we need to praise God for all our blessings.
I am doing so more each day!!!
Thank you so much for your encouragement and this giveaway.
BTW, I loved reading Slightly Bad girls of the Bible.!! I was glued to the pages and even passed it along to my MIL
I have loved this particular study of Leah! I’m reminded today that God surely sees out ahead and is guiding us along the path! We are truly blessed. Thanks so much Liz!
This is just what I needed to hear, today. Thank you, Liz, for sharing God’s word.
Eye Opener for me. as many times as I have read that passage I overlooked the following… she didn’t seek out Jacob wanting affection or attention, and she didn’t turn to her sister or to her father or to her mother or her neighbors needing their approval. I was too busy feeling sorry for her. But pity wasn’t what she needed.
She realized the most important thing when she lifted her voice to the One who matters most. . our only HOPE!
Thank you, Liz, for writing about God’s love for the unpopular and unknown women of the Bible. Every girl wants to play Rachel and Mary in the Sunday school skits, but to me, it’s their sisters Leah and Martha who get this inside extra love from and knowledge of God that makes their underdog stories so much more human and relatable. Thank you, Papa God, for our awesome sister in Jesus.
thank you for your word ..love the story on leah ……needed it today. diapoointnents and waiting are hard… God Bless you. love your books …..I have yiur series on leah ….love them…..need yo get the latest though. thanks irene xoxoxo
How can it be 15 years since I read Thorn in my Heart! All three of those books were so inspiring! I will never forget the part where Leah sat on the stool, in the church, in front of everyone! My heart ached as I read it! Oh the sacrifice! Praise God for Jesus who was the sacrificial Lamb for us all! I need him everyday!!!
Wow! It’s so crazy how God is so faithful to use others to speak to the place where we are. The last 3months my daughter and I have been homeless, staying with family, staying in hotels, and a handful of nights sleeping in my car. I have felt so discouraged by this struggle and have found myself feeling so lost and forgotten. But God has been speaking to my heart through email devotions like yours to say that He is there, He loves me, He will never leave me, and He will provide for me! I don’t know how our circumstances are going to change but I know that God won’t abandon us in our time of need! We have a place to stay for another week and a half, and I’m believing God will provide for us to have a permanent place by then, and jobs to sustain us!
I would enjoy reading more from you Liz. Please enter me into the contest. Thank you.
I enjoyed your story about Leah. I would love to read more of your books. Please enter me in the contest. Thank you.
I identify with Leah. May God fill my heart with hope!!
Liz, you have such a God-given way of expressing on paper what my heart is feeling inside! Thank YOU!!! Absolutely LOVE your Scotland novels along with all your other great books – yours is one my favorite writing styles! Keep ’em comin’, sister! 🙂
My daughter is experiencing a threatened divorce after her husband returned from his recent deployment. He is not a Christian and she had fallen away once she married him. I am going to forward her your latest blog, and pray she experiences what Leah did, in seeing how much God loves her.
Liz, I remember your smile and your sense of humor when we met, very briefly, at Glorieta nearly two decades ago. You regaled your audience with the tale of the luncheon, the nail polish, and the pantyhose. That visual still cracks me up.
What impressed me most was the true joy you emanated the whole time. That joy sometimes is the result of the healing of massive hurt. No wonder you are so sensitive to these women of the Bible.
Thank you for helping us see Leah’s growth in the Lord.
I would love to be the winner Liz!!
I identify wholly with Leah. It took me a long time to come to that point, but I hope to come to my next Leah moment. When I can be complete in God’s love for me.
I never thought about Leah as being loved by God. She was always just the unloved or unwanted wife.
God is so good to us in spite of our unloveliness.
I have been through many trials in my life, and God has never failed me. I guess that Leah felt the same way about God loving her.
Leah’s story is so needed in our world. Too many women live feeling like they are not enough or made to believe it. Thank you! Powerful!!
Beautifully written. This touched my heart. Thank you.
Keep up hope! Loved the flower photography
Thank you so much for hearing from our Lord about Leah.
I need that same walk in my life.
I love our Lord, but since going through some pretty rough times,
I’ve become sad, depressed and hide often under His wing.
I know He loves me, but I don’t think I love Him back as He
should be loved.
Hugs & Blessings,
Enjoyed your reading. I didn’t realize Christ was born through Leah and kingly Judah’s blood line. Thanks for all your wonderful words and insights about the Scriptures.
This brought me to tears. Thanks for your post! I want to feel close to the Lord again.
Thank you Liz for this beautiful story reminding us of God’s truth. Learning to embrace God and Him alone is difficult. I am often drawn to the busyness of life hoping it will keep me busy enough to keep my mind off of myself, or hoping it will allow me to be noticed by others and they will find me significant. But, then I’m reminded of a time when I was a young girl riding my bike, alone, on a hot summer day and I heard Him speak to me. The voice wasn’t audible, but it impacted my heart just the same. He whispered, “I love you.”
I stopped right there and sat still for a moment and pondered the miracle of His love when I wasn’t doing anything except riding my bike. God Bless.
I love your writing Ms. Higgs! I still cherish the book plates you sent me a couple years ago. You were my introduction to Historical Fiction Christian Romance books and I’ve never looked back! According to Goodreads I’ve read 87 such books giving me literally years of enjoyment. The only downside is I’ve read no other genre of literature, except Henri Nouwen Spiritual Direction and the Bible of course.
I loved the story of Leah. Seems like I always kinda felt sorry for her. The way you wrote that story made me never to look at that Bible story the same again. I don’t have the Bad Girls book and I would love to have an autographed copy of Thorn in my Heart
I’ve read this story so many times, yet I love how you broke it down and the lesson gleaned. Thank you for this wonderful work you do, Liz. I have several of your books and would love to win these! Thanks for the generosity of giving some away. Blessings!
I loved this story of Leah as I, also, had to learn that I didn’t need to know I’m loved by a man because God loves me the most and more than any human can.
Everyone loved our Bad Girls Bible study this summer. We just finished it this week. We are already talking about either doing Really Bad Girls or Slightly Bad girls next summer!
Love your Scottish books (hope you will have another one soon!) My heart always went out to Leah/Leana.
Hugs to you Liz!
Hi Liz. I know it’s too late to win your awesome books, but I did want to tell you how much I love your blogs. I needed to read this one today!
I also love reading your books, and listening to your podcasts!
If it has to do with you, I’m in! 😉
Bless you and you continue to keep blessing all us women!
Oh Liz, I LOVE your posts and your books and your events, I just LOVE you too ❤️ Praise God for watching over you and touching you with His mighty healing hands 😇.