Name the top 10 people who have had a transformative influence on your life! One of those people for me is my guest today, Pastor Don Solin. Don currently pastors a church in Ohio and is a certified life coach, but many years ago he was my high school youth pastor. In the midst of such tender years of growth and struggle, he and his wife Marcie loved on us crazy teenagers in such meaningful ways. Don was one of the first people who really pushed me and challenged me to make my faith my own and to wholeheartedly follow the Lord. And, its not an exaggeration to say that his encouragement to go to Wheaton College affected the whole trajectory of my life. He also knows how to make me laugh, which you'll hear...and I've always admired his love for people and his desire to be a good question-asker and thoughtful listener. I am so grateful for the ways that Don’s mentoring and friendship grew my faith and set the foundation in some key ways for the person that I am today.
Now, all this being said, Don’s own journey of faith, and seeking to be loved and accepted by God instead of people, has been a tough, messy one…one that has included alcoholism, performance religion, and depression. When I asked him about a title for this episode, he somewhat jokingly suggested "Fighting for Joy With a Whole Lot of Issues". :) Oh how thankful we can be for a God that is big enough to carry us through what ever struggles we face, and meet us with sufficient grace and mercy. I can’t wait for you to hear Don's story today! It is so hopeful and I know you will be encouraged by the ways that God has taught him to live by faith - not by performing, keeping up an image, or striving to meet other people’s standards. Living honestly and authentically has helped him to experience true joy and he is passionate about helping others experience this freedom and joy as well.
*The Fighting for Joy Podcast is sponsored by Faithful Counseling, an online Christian counseling service that pairs you with a professional licensed therapist who will combine Biblical wisdom with their clinical expertise in mental health to help you address your unique situation. As a Fighting for Joy listener, you can receive 10% off at: faithfulcounseling.com/fightingforjoy. Quality counseling is a worthy investment and can be such a powerful tool in the fight for joy!