Adults make over 35,000 decisions every day.
Many are second nature. I’m here for the ones that aren’t.
I’m an author, a podcast host, and a curious listener dedicated to helping you create space for your soul to breathe so you can discern your next right thing in love.
I’ve made it my job to put into words the thoughts you don’t have time to think.
If you’re feeling stuck over a certain decision right now, you’ve weighed the options but just can’t see things clearly yet, I’ve written a book I know will help.
It’s called The Next Right Thing and in it you’ll find a simple, soulful practice for making life decisions. Grab a copy wherever books are sold.
Here’s a simple guide that will help clear the chaos. It’s basically a series of questions to ask yourself as you consider your next right thing.
A Manifesto of Sorts: 8 Things to Know
After over twelve years of writing on the Internet, writing four books, co-founding a membership site for writers, hosting a podcast, and taking a lot of classes on life with God, I’ve started to repeat myself.
Here I’ve compiled a list of mostly unrelated statements I always say that basically summarize what I’m about and how I hope my work will serve you best.
1. When it comes to creativity and life with God, your pace is your pace and there’s no such thing as behind.
I hear this a lot from people who are afraid they’ve somehow missed their calling, missed their chance, or missed what God might have for them. I’ve felt this way too, but what I’ve learned is that God is always with us and as we walk with him into our next ordinary moment, he won’t let us miss the way. He is the way. With him, there’s no such thing as behind.
2. Art is what happens when we dare to move toward what makes us come alive.
The first thing we know about God is that he created. The first thing we know about us is we are made in his image. The art we have to offer, then, is anything that comes out as a result of us simply being ourselves. That could be a painting or it could be a pie. It could be a kind word spoken or received. I wrote an entire book about our birthright as image-bearers of God in the world. It’s called A Million Little Ways: Uncover the Art You Were Made to Live.
3. Part of my job is to create new metaphors to live by.
Thats what I do. I’ve basically created a job for myself where I pay attention to the world around me and the world within me and then connect the dots. I think that’s my job as a writer and I actually think that’s our job as humans. Here’s where I wrote about that from a writer’s perspective: The Real Job of A Writer.
4. Celebrating my smallness has basically changed my life.
My friend and teacher Steve Lynam said those words to me at a time when I felt painfully out of control: Celebrate your smallness. I was trying to make myself big enough to handle everything and these three words offered relief when I needed it the most.
Celebrating my smallness does not mean hanging my head down low and not saying any words and being quiet all the time. It doesn’t mean hiding out or holding my tongue.
Instead, it means knowing my true home is Jesus and I am not my own point of reference. It means getting all my accolades from my Father, laying down ladders and picking up crosses. It means sitting down on the inside.
5. Most of life happens not in brightness or in darkness but in the medium light of a regular day.
Combine this one with number 4 and you’ve basically got the gist of my book, Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World.
6. Writing and publishing are not the same thing.
This one’s for the writers. When I get emails or questions from readers who want to know about writing, I often have to clarify: Are you asking about writing or are you asking about publishing? One is art, the other is business. We created hope*writers to help writers navigate both the joy and pain of learning the difference.
7. “Relentlessly eliminate hurry from your life.” — Dallas Willard
Sometimes the things I say a lot are things other people said first. Just because someone else has said it doesn’t mean I can’t say it, too. (That’s another thing I say a lot, but I’ll give you that one as a bonus.)
8. Just do the next right thing.
In times of confusion, doubt, and foggy transitions that lead to decision fatigue, the best advice I’ve heard or given: just do the next right thing. This one small phrase has been passed down and repeated by countless others before me. It’s been so meaningful in my own life, I decided to start a whole podcast about it: it’s called The Next Right Thing. Each episode is less than 15 minutes long and includes a short reflection, a little prayer, and a simple next right step.
“We stop, whether by choice or through circumstance, so that we can be alert and attentive and receptive to what God is doing in and for us, in and for others, on the way. We wait for our souls to catch up with our bodies.”
-Eugene Peterson, The Jesus Way
The school-ish details
I graduated from Columbia International University where I learned how to study the Bible and from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro where I received my degree in Educational Interpreting for the Deaf.
I also received Advanced Discipleship Training through the Association of Exchanged Life Ministries and attended the School of Spiritual Direction with Dr. Larry Crabb’s New Way Ministries.
Currently (2018) I’m enrolled in Friends University where I’m working toward my Masters in Christian Spiritual Formation and Leadership.
John and I were married in 2001 and for the first 12 years of our marriage he worked as a youth pastor. In 2013, John transitioned out of youth ministry into a time of waiting and listening to find out what was next. Now he is the director of a local non-profit ministry called Grace Discipleship where he offers discipleship care for weary souls.
I served as a sign language interpreter for several years when we first got married until the twins were born and I couldn’t remember my name, much less how to interpret geometry into sign language. Then, after starting a blog in January 2006, I realized I had words of my own to share rather than always interpreting someone else’s.
John and I have been married 17 years now and he continues to be a fixed point for me in the midst of our fast-moving world. We have twin girls who look like him and a boy who looks like me. The girls are in their first year of high school, our son in his first year of middle school. It’s going too fast and we’re holding on tight.
Where Else You Can Find Me
- Amazon Author Page
- Email: info at emily p freeman dot com
- Real Mail: PO Box 4501 Greensboro, NC 27404
Bonus: Child Sponsorship
When I traveled to The Philippines and to Uganda with Compassion International and a small team of bloggers, this blog community was a lovely support.
While we wrote about our experience in order to raise awareness for the need to support children and families living in poverty around the world, readers back home read along, shared those posts, and hundreds of children were sponsored as a result. You can read about our trip to Uganda right here.
Here’s how you can join in:
My family and I continue to sponsor children through Compassion as do many of my readers. Here’s where you can too.