239. Trusting God When Life is Challenging (with Shane Stanford)

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I hope that you will join me for this exciting and thought-provoking conversation with Shane Standord, author of the book JourneyWise: Redeeming the Broken & Winding Roads We Travel (The Eight Blessings of the Beatitudes of Jesus)! ​​Shane has a truly powerful story to tell that’s driven by his unwavering faith, strength, and astounding resilience in the face of life’s biggest challenges!

He shares about his journey as a grandfather, 30-year pastor, and founder of the West Center for Applied Theology in Memphis, Tennessee, and he tells us about his life-changing encounter with his own mortality at the young age of 16 when he was diagnosed with Hemophilia and HIV. He talks candidly about how he grappled with the prospect of his impending death and how a profound conversation with his grandfather shifted his perspective, setting him on a path to make every day count, grounded in the love of Jesus.

Shane also shares how his faith was tested yet solidified during moments of discrimination, injustice, and fear from society due to his health condition. He shares how his belief in the Beatitudes, the wisdom values of Jesus, have offered nourishment and understanding to his journey and how strongly he believes in the need for living our faith intentionally. This is not an episode to pass up, so prepare to have your faith deepened and your perspective on life transformed!


In This Episode

[0:35] – Today’s guest is Shane Stanford, author of JourneyWise!

[1:08] – Shane shares a little bit of background information with us.

[2:07] – JourneyWise, inspired by Shane’s grandmother’s wisdom and the Beatitudes, emphasizes learning from life’s journey for practical application.

[3:04] – Through maintaining a prayer journal for 30 years, Shane underscores the importance of intentional faith in deepening the Christian walk.

[4:35] – Shane reveals that he was diagnosed with HIV and Hepatitis C but chose to intentionally live a meaningful life, inspired by his grandfather’s faith-rooted advice.

[7:11] – Shane reflects on having coped with his HIV diagnosis by leaning on faith and the support of his resilient wife.

[10:18] – Facing rejection over his HIV status, Shane learned the damaging effects of fear-driven decisions while developing empathy for his detractors.

[13:21] – Shane explains how he had to differentiate between flawed human responses and the comforting presence of God amidst a broken world.

[15:04] – The Beatitudes reveal that true abundance comes from self-emptying and loving boldly, experiencing comfort and life’s depth.

[17:44] – Shane adds that the Beatitudes guide a balanced life, navigating tensions between love for God and others, culminating in enduring persecution for faith.

[20:25] – Shane lives intentionally, guided daily by important human responsibilities and grounding promises from Jesus, finding his hardships have shaped his values.

[22:45] – Shane emphasizes intellectual decision-making guided by God’s promises, explaining it as the true north for daily life especially when emotionally overwhelmed.

[25:00] – Shane leaves us with encouragement, that no matter your struggles, remember God’s deep love; embrace hope, address pain, and anticipate healing beyond this life.


Links & Resources

Crystal Paine



JourneyWise: Redeeming the Broken & Winding Roads We Travel (The Eight Blessings of the Beatitudes of Jesus) by Shane Stanford


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