faith, freedom, food

Tag: #love

A Weekend In Paradise

A Weekend In Paradise

“Paradise.” That’s what my sister’s friend called my family cottage after just a few hours of exploring the grounds. “I’ve never been to a cottage like this.” Krystal, Johnny, and I exchanged satisfied glances; Aly was not wrong. Papineau Lake was not like most lakes, […]

05. Healing

05. Healing

This is the fifth instalment of six in my series telling my love story with my fiance Johnny. Read Part 1, “Meeting,” here, Part 2, “Dating,” here, Part 3, “Distance,” here, and Part 4, “Letters,” here. Following the grandly miraculous healing that Jesus reigned in over my life […]

04. Letters

04. Letters

Read Part 1, “Meeting,” here, Part 2, “Dating,” here, and Part 3, “Distance,” here.

It was our second New Year’s Eve together, over our first reunion during long distance dating, that Johnny told me there was something really important he needed to talk to me about.

Now, for some context. Before Johnny and I met, I had come through years of entrenchment in eating disorders. At the time we met, when I was entering university, my health appeared much better than it had previously, but my mind was still quite the war-zone. My brain was still hyper-focused on calories and lack of calories and minutes spent burning calories. And I hadn’t even admitted to myself, but, when Johnny left, that war-zone in my mind had waged harder, threatening to take over.

Sovereign LORD, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant. 2 SAMUEL 7:28

Since Johnny and I had just gone months without seeing each other, my decrease in health was apparently incredibly obvious to him when he returned. Not simply in my physical appearance, but in my mental clarity and focus.

Never once did I feel Johnny’s lack of love and support. He clung MORE tightly at first, and his gentle, loving promptings scared the eating disorder inside me.

But, Johnny soon realized that clinging tightly was not the answer to my health. If he truly loved me, he would have to let go.

So, New Year’s Eve, Johnny explained to me what he had prayed through. He felt strongly that God was asking Him to step away from being such an influential voice in my life, just for this next season. Johnny explained that he wanted desperately to make everything better, but he needed to act according to his belief that only God could remedy this dark mental illness, and Johnny didn’t want to stand in the way of that because he loved me too much.

We rang in 2017 crying our eyes out, as the eating disorder cringed because Cassie woke up to the reality of her sickness that day. Living this life could mean losing the love of my life… I couldn’t foresee it for what it was just yet, but I knew that I wanted to live freely and whole-heartedly for Jesus, and that the eating disorder was preventing me from doing so.

So, when Johnny left again for Winnipeg, we committed to no communication outside of letter-writing for the next four months.

Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you. PSALM 9:10

I spent a large part of the coming months in spiritual therapy with some of the most humble and self-sacrificing people I have ever known. To read the full story of how God used this time to heal the eating disorder in my life, head here.

I was a new creation in Christ, and Johnny had shown his trust in both me and in the Lord during this time, which was HUGE.

May we shout for joy over your victory and lift up our banners in the name of our God. PSALM 20:5

I have also witnessed Johnny come through immense trials, honoured to walk next to him in his journey with Jesus. The time we both gave in which we synced our words with our actions– we trust you wholly and completely, Lord, so we’re going to surrender everything to you– glorified Him and taught us both so much in the process.

As Johnny last summer endured a lot of challenges and pain during a time that I was much healthier and more thriving, God shifted our perspectives yet again. I have watched Johnny grow from that difficulty in pursuit of God; watched God grant him an amazing job opportunity, soccer skill that blows my mind, and transform his character to become only ever more in the image of Christ. I am absolutely amazed by the grace, love, and genuineness of the man I get to marry.

3 The LORD will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins; he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the LORD. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing. ISAIAH 51:3

02. Dating

02. Dating

All photos by the best wedding/engagement photographer on planet earth, Liam Good. Read Part 1, “Meeting,” here. That first coffee date made Johnny’s intentions even more clear. We spent it talking about what God had done in our lives, and to give Him glory for those […]

01. Meeting

01. Meeting

All photos by the best wedding/engagement photographer on planet earth, Liam Good. I didn’t think the incredibly handsome man with the super humble but intelligent thoughts and shy smile whose name I knew to be Johnny Fulford would ever talk to me. I assumed that, […]

Your Faith Has Made You Well

Your Faith Has Made You Well

Jesus really doesn’t ask for much.

Well, yes, when we follow Him we surrender our lives from purpose for dead and meaningless, withering worldly things to the eternal purpose of Jesus’ glorification, and this may certainly be seen as “much” if we don’t know Jesus as the perfect Father, creator of the universe we were made to live for, or if we view this physical world as all there is, and death as the end rather than the beginning. But surrendering our lives is simply the way we were created to live, and when it happens, we are set free, and understand JOY AND LIFE ABUNDANT.

Recently, my reading of the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 9 caused me to dwell on just what Jesus asks of me, and how much of what comes next is just HIM.

A woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.

–Matthew 9:20-22

I was urged to ask my Father in prayer for the heart of this bleeding woman. That every fibre of my being would know that one encounter with Jesus means healing.

Now, I think it would be quite easy to mistake Jesus’ words to mean that the woman’s faith, her own human strength, had the power to heal her. Rather, Jesus Himself honoured the belief that the woman had in His perfect power and ability and chose to heal her. The woman had her faith in JESUS ALONE, knowing it would take simply a moment in His presence to be healed. JESUS ALONE healed her, knowing from God the Father that the woman’s faith in the Son was right and good.

Lord, would I have the faith of the woman in Matthew 9. Would I know radically well that if I but touch You, Jesus, I will be healed. Not for my sake, Lord, but for Yours, and for the healing of others. Would my faith in who you are urge me to know you more deeply, widely, and fully every moment. To know what it is to live like You do.

If we have this radical faith, you see… the rest is done.

If we have radical faith that Jesus is who He says He is, we will live to bring Him glory. We will be healed. Worldly fears dissipate. Anger and sin and shame flea by His Holy Spirit. But we know that this is a daily step of faith, proclamation of faith, and death to self.

AND then we know that this is the only way to live.

Guest Writer (Must-Read) Angie: In Christ Alone

Guest Writer (Must-Read) Angie: In Christ Alone

The first time I met Angie Smith was in the middle of the first service I attended at C3KW. I was crying during worship, and she calmly and confidently tapped my shoulder and asked if she could pray for me. I didn’t quite know how […]

Blooming: How Three Days Up North Changed My Trajectory

Blooming: How Three Days Up North Changed My Trajectory

This past Wednesday, May 22nd, I embarked upon a journey that changed my life, and that I will never forget. This time last year, my dear friend and pastor, Nat, came home from a mystery excursion to the Muskokas raving about his experience, and telling […]

Coffee Talks: Writer’s Block

Coffee Talks: Writer’s Block

I haven’t wanted to face it, let alone write about it.

The very topic has caused me to close my laptop and attempt to anything and everything but write. I haven’t wanted to acknowledge its presence, but it has hit me: writer’s block.

I would like to say, “It’s okay. You can take some time off writing. You did, after all, just finish a four-year degree for which you practically never STOPPED writing.” But the perfectionist in me cannot say that.

Writing is my joy, my calling, and my freedom. Of these things I am sure. I could spend forever spinning stories, rewording prose to make it more beautiful and flowery and audience-appropriate. And what I write usually comes very naturally to me.

But it is as if graduating university has put an abrupt halt to all of that, causing me to question the merit of writing when it isn’t for the sake of literary analysis or discovering truth in a work.

Amos replied, “I’m not a professional prophet, and I was never trained to be one. I’m just a shepherd, and I take care of sycamore-fig trees. But the Lord called me away from my flock and told me, ‘Go and prophesy to my people in Israel.’ AMOS 7:14-15

This verse in the Book of Amos reminds me that I am not a professional writer, nor will I ever be. God has not asked me to be perfect, but to serve HIM in the way I write as I have been called. I want this blog to be FULL of His provisions; to be marvellous to His ears, and to be nothing but a glorification of His great name.

So, what HAS been inspired in the midst of this “writer’s block” (still perhaps refusing to call it that) is a devotional for the confused and undecided.

Lord, I don’t know what the future of my life holds. But You do, Jesus. Even now, quiet the voice that tries to tell me You don’t. I know and believe that You do. You have gone before me, Lord, and I pray that my steps are in alignment with what You have purposed me for, for the glory of Your Holy Name.

Jesus, when I feel scared of the unknown, remind me that I am fully known and fully loved by the only Eternal King of the universe. Jesus, when I feel like a failure for not knowing what is next, remind me that You have already overcome, defeated the grave, and therefore call me chosen and set apart; not a failure, but called to be a servant.

God, in my stirring, be my everything. In my weakness, remind me who the Healer is. When I forget Your perfection, put on my heart all that You have already done.

I have a feeling Cassie, Compiled. will be hearing a lot more from me in the coming months!

Tell me…

  1. What topic would you love for me to cover?
The NUMBER ONE THING Preventing You From Achieving Your Goals

The NUMBER ONE THING Preventing You From Achieving Your Goals

It’s 9pm on a Tuesday. You’re exhausted. You barely found the energy to make dinner having almost succumbed to Miss Vickie’s and pickles as your meal, you did a load of laundry but folding it is a whole other story, and you really wanted to […]