Surrendering My “A” Game by Julie Arduini

My brand is surrender. I add chocolate to the mix because that is my constant struggle and there are times we aren’t ready to surrender. I’ve been there, so my tagline is “Encouraging you to surrender the good, the bad, and—maybe one day—the chocolate.”

I’m waist deep in a new contemporary romance series, Surrendering Hearts, and my goodness it has been a bear to write. The characters talk to me all the time but my own life has been a steady flow of grief and the unknown.

Last blog post I shared how I went on vacation and emotionally froze so hard that I physically injured myself. The Sunday I returned to church, the pastor called to pray for anyone that had a knee or back issue. Well, that was certainly where my pain ended up.

I went to a trusted prayer warrior and before I could even get the words out, I blurted it wasn’t really the knee and back that needed healing. I needed healing from the grief and anxiety.

In that prayer time came a huge a-ha moment.

I don’t have to carry it all.

I don’t have to bring my A game to every single thing.

And there it was. The root of my issue. I’ve been believing for as long as I can remember that the success of others depends on my perfection. No wonder I fell apart. No one can live under that kind of pressure. We weren’t created to.

There was yet another trip our family took, a quick one, but it involved flight at an airport I don’t enjoy. I knew it was a huge test for what I was learning. I practiced breathing techniques. I exercised my knee and hamstring. I laid down boundaries that weren’t pressure on others, but were necessary for me. I hate those walking sidewalks and escalators at airports. I am terrified of falling or tripping. I walked and took the elevator. It made a great difference.

The biggest difference was even though I’m still not at regular pace, I was okay with it. I kept repeating I didn’t have to try to be perfect or bring my “A” game. That surrender was key.

Last trip, not even a month ago, I was so overwhelmed by anxiety I could barely walk and had to buy a cane. This last trip, I brought the cane and barely used it.

I remember writing Entangled and being surprised that God was bringing up things from my past for healing as the theme was surrendering regret. Each of my books has carried a surrender theme that God has first tapped me to experience.

This series isn’t any other different. The heroine in Anchored Hearts, Jordyn Hart, loves to think she is in control and she hates change. When everything around her crumbles, she struggles.

Funny. That sounds very familiar!

If you are a real go-getter, I suggest you step back in prayer and ask God if anything needs changing. Are you involved in something God never asked you to do? It doesn’t even have to be anything sinful. Remember, my tagline mentions surrendering the good. There’s a lot I had to let go of that wasn’t sinful or a rebellious choice, it wasn’t where God wanted me.

If you feel the need to be perfect, remember only Jesus is perfect. We don’t even come close. Sure, we should do our best, but if you believe the lie that you’re a failure if things don’t go exactly right, please learn from me. Surrender those lies to Christ today.

Have you read the preview to the Surrendering Hearts series? The sneak peek to Anchored Hearts?

Free preview:

I’ll email you when there are updates on release/promos. One email will be chosen to receive ANCHORED HEARTS. USA only.

About juliearduini

Julie Arduini loves to encourage readers to find freedom in Christ by surrendering the good, the bad, and ---maybe one day---the chocolate. She’s the author of the new contemporary romance series SURRENDERING HEARTS (Anchored Hearts, Repairing Hearts, +four more.) Her other romance series is SURRENDERING TIME (Entrusted, Entangled, Engaged.) She also co-wrote a YA series with her daughter, SURRENDERING STINKIN’ THINKIN’ (You’re Beautiful, You’re Amazing, You’re Brilliant.) Her stand-alone romances include MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN and RESTORING CHRISTMAS. Julie maintains a blog at and participates in the team blog Christians Read. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children. Learn more by visiting her at
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