Today’s Feature Writer ~ Heather Whidden

A glimpse into who I am….
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First and foremost, I am a worshipper and daughter of the King; saved by grace and redeemed by the blood of Jesus. He is my Savior and has set me free! I pray everyone can encounter Jesus as I have and fall in love with Him personally. Although I grew up in church my whole life, and even knew the bible, lived by it and “loved” God, everything I did was out of religious duty, traditions, rituals, obligations and fear. I never really understood Him or Who He was. I knew something was missing but had no idea what that was…until the day that I encountered Him. February 24, 2008, everything changed. That was the day I went from loving God to being IN LOVE with God, from religion to relationship. I would never be the same.

I am the wife to the most amazing man I’ve ever known. My husband and I met in high school in 1998. He won my heart on our first date, and it’s his forever. In 2003 we married, and are now parents to 3 of the greatest blessings God could ever give; two girls and a boy. Our first, Selah, was born in 2009, our son, Emerson, in 2011; and our youngest, Naomi, in 2014.   It may sound like the picture perfect life, “little white picket fence” kind of thing, but the truth is that it hasn’t been an easy road most of the way.  But we’re on a journey all our own and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I actually get to wake up every day next to my best friend. We get to do real life together. We’ve been serving in our church, Church of the Highlands in Birmingham, Alabama, since January of 2006. The same church that I encountered Jesus and had my life change.

I am a leader in ministry. There was a time I never would’ve imagined myself as such. The very thought was comical. I never would’ve believed that God could use me to impact others lives for His glory. However, someone else believed in me when I couldn’t, and encouraged me; calling things out in me that I didn’t know were even there. I’ve now been a leader for over 4 years and I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love ministering to the women He brings into my life and get to see them experience life change. I can’t believe He’s picked me to do something so incredible, to be apart of it in the first place. Life change happens in the context of relationship.

I’m a professional photographer by trade. I acquired my business license when I was 19, and was ready to shake the photography world! I did plenty of shaking for about 10 years then decided to go on a partial sabbatical the last couple years in order to take on a new world, that of a stay at home wife and mommy to my husband and beautiful babies. However, photography will always be a passion of mine, as I will never grow tired of having the opportunity to capture life’s most precious moments.

And I am a writer.  I discovered this passion at a very young age. I’d spend hours pouring my thoughts on the pages of journals upon journals and countless notebooks. However, after a very difficult season during my senior year of high school, I abandoned my pen. I had no intentions of picking it up again, either. God had other plans, though.

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.” Romans 8:28

That’s my life verse because He’s demonstrated this so many times for me. In this case, after 12 years of it lying dormant, He awoke something in me that I thought was long dead, and He breathed new life back into it. I picked my pen back up…and began writing again, only now it’s for Him. He’s been opening doors of opportunity for me to partner with others who also share the same ministry passion I have and connect it with writing. This blog for example is just one of them.

He breathes life into the dead places in us and they become alive. It’s my prayer that everyone experiences this for themselves. Thank you for taking the time to read how He’s been speaking to us. I hope He speaks to you as you read.  Blessings ~ Heather

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