Being OK With It All 

As I have been blessed to have God open doors to share my testimony and music, I have found myself struggling with a part of my life I share.  This was especially true for me after a recent national tv appearance that has a large Christian audience.  A part of my life and my testimony is the fact that my parents wrote a huge #1 Bestselling self help book "I'm OK You're OK."  Talking about this book can be a bit of a tightrope walk for me (I love my parents and want to honor them but have found my hope and healing in Christ alone,) and especially when time is short and I fail to put it all in context.  I know the book is not highly thought of by many Christians and I do understand why.  But it is a part of my life and testimony so I do share it.

It all can be so confusing because I saw my parents growing up speaking at some churches and occasionally they would get a letter from a priest or clergy member who was helped by the book.  Yet for me it didn't offer the hope and healing I so needed.  I had every bit of knowledge, expert advice, insight in my home and in my head, yet I had absolutely no peace.  I realize that being so close to it all had a different affect on me than a person just buying the book.  But, this was my reality. 

And the truth is, it is a humanistic book based on Transactional Analysis.  It is about relating to other people.  And describing our transactions in the terms Parent, Adult and Child.  I wanted to follow this and I was a very nice person, but was extremely self analytical, self absorbed, and struggled to find value in myself. I heard a lot growing up about "strokes."  My mom would say:  "you need some strokes" when I was down. But going out and looking for a thumbs up from people is a recipe for disaster and deep hurt. I struggled for years to get that. And I was depressed and walking on very shaky ground.  I love this translation of Proverbs 29:25 (The fear of man is a snare) from The Message: "Fear of human opinion disables, but trusting God protects you from that."  What a truth. 

Everything that was missing in my life was found in Jesus Christ.  When I wrote, "Then I Met Jesus," I wrote:  "He gave me value and righteousness too, when I met Jesus, He made me brand new."   The value I found in Christ is why I can do what I am doing today.  When I lived in Hollywood, I was still looking for my value from people.  Try doing that in Hollywood!  I was a wreck and I am so thankful Jesus saved me from that life. 

Jesus Christ also gives us all we need to have good relationships with people. I don't have to be concerned about overanalyzing things because His love covers it all.  I can be kind and not expect anything in return. I don't have to be hurt or offended. Christ is my advocate. I can walk in confidence no matter my circumstances.  He is enough, His grace is enough.  In Christ we have permanent transformation and change and what I cherish: rest and peace for our souls. A peace which passes understanding.

I love my parents dearly and never would want to say anything negative about them or their work. I'm extremely proud of my dad, especially for His service in the US Military. He was a Pearl Harbor Veteran and was the Chief Psychiatrist of the Navy Dept. in Washington DC.  And he was a kind and gentle soul.  And my dear loving mother is who at just the right moment, spoke to me about Jesus and it changed my life.  She grew up in the church and she knew that I needed more help than any person could give me.

But before this happened, we did attend church during my childhood, but what I saw was more of a social emphasis.  It seemed it was the people who were important more than the spiritual aspect.  And I believe this is a mistake so many make and why they get burned out and indifferent towards church. The people in the church we should care about, encourage, walk beside,  but Jesus Christ is who we honor, worship and adore.  

When I looked to Christ alone, that truly is when my hope was found.  My peace was found.  My joy was found.  My life has been found.  Through His love and His Word, my fearful and tormented mind was healed and transformed.  No more self analysis- just rest.  

I admire the fact that my parents had a heart to help people. But in their later lives and even through some of their own deep struggles they came to see that Jesus Christ truly is the one and only answer.  And they gave their lives fully to Him.  I saw that in my dad's later years.  He loved going to church and singing the hymns.  He had a beautiful whistle that he would often use to "sing" them at home.  He was so precious and at peace when he passed in 1995. We had a beautiful last day together and when I was walking out the door, he said (he had dementia, but this was clear as a bell,) "there's something good out there," as he looked to the sky.  He died later that day. 

And my sweet mother who is still with us, blesses our family and so many others with her beautiful and touching piano.  She loves the hymns and can play anything you ask.  I think she literally knows them all.

I want to always honor my father and mother as the bible instructs, but remain true to my testimony.  And the truth is, they are not that book.  They are God's children.

I am so grateful Jesus has worked everything out for the good, just as He promises He will do for us all.  Yes, He is more than enough.  My deepest prayer is that everyone who is searching will find the treasure of Jesus Christ.  He has everything, He is everything.  Praise His Holy Name. 

Here is:  "Then I Met Jesus" - my testimony in song

21 comments

  • Mabel Winkler
    Mabel Winkler Irvine, KY
    This is beautiful, it could be my testimony. I was praying while listening, I have a hard time forgetting my past. When I know Jesus has forgiven me. Thank you.

    This is beautiful, it could be my testimony. I was praying while listening, I have a hard time forgetting my past. When I know Jesus has forgiven me. Thank you.

  • Gretchen Keskeys
    Gretchen Keskeys
    Yes you are forgiven! It is forgotten! I love this from Philippians 3:13-14 "Forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Don't look back Mabel! If I looked back (and is there a lot I could crawl in a hole about,) and didn't embrace the gift of forgiveness Christ has given me, I would not be living my life for His glory. He has all that for you and more! Much love in Christ to you!

    Yes you are forgiven! It is forgotten! I love this from Philippians 3:13-14 "Forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Don't look back Mabel! If I looked back (and is there a lot I could crawl in a hole about,) and didn't embrace the gift of forgiveness Christ has given me, I would not be living my life for His glory. He has all that for you and more! Much love in Christ to you!

  • Dana
    Dana California
    Love this! I wasn't raised in a Christian home and am the first generation Christian. I am blessed that all three of my adult children are now Christians and walking w the Lotd!

    Love this! I wasn't raised in a Christian home and am the first generation Christian. I am blessed that all three of my adult children are now Christians and walking w the Lotd!

  • Gretchen Keskeys
    Gretchen Keskeys
    That's awesome Dana! Praise God!

    That's awesome Dana! Praise God!

  • Marlena Cooksey
    Marlena Cooksey Taylor, AL
    Marlena - I was responding to your message and somehow it got erased! (I tried something new, posting under your message.) I am so sorry and especially because it was such a beautiful and encouraging message. If you see this, that is what happened and please write again! I am so glad you know Jesus too! :)

    Marlena - I was responding to your message and somehow it got erased! (I tried something new, posting under your message.) I am so sorry and especially because it was such a beautiful and encouraging message. If you see this, that is what happened and please write again! I am so glad you know Jesus too! smile

  • Wilma adams
    Wilma adams laurel ms.
    Your testemoney touched my heart so deep some of my on struggles as i walk with my lord and savoir. Your song drought joyful tears how beautiful

    Your testemoney touched my heart so deep some of my on struggles as i walk with my lord and savoir. Your song drought joyful tears how beautiful

  • Gretchen Keskeys
    Gretchen Keskeys
    I am so thankful God used my testimony to touch your heart Wilma. And yes, I know so deeply the struggles I've had with my walk with Christ. It is not always a perfect or easy road, but it is the most amazing and best road to be on! I am thankful my song touched you too. You are so kind to write. I really appreciate it! Much love in Christ to you! Gretchen

    I am so thankful God used my testimony to touch your heart Wilma. And yes, I know so deeply the struggles I've had with my walk with Christ. It is not always a perfect or easy road, but it is the most amazing and best road to be on! I am thankful my song touched you too. You are so kind to write. I really appreciate it! Much love in Christ to you! Gretchen

  • Bonnie
    Bonnie michigan
    Gretchen, I read that book about 14 years ago while separated from my husband who took his own life a year later. I can't remember everything about it but it did help me. I grew up in church but really have surrendered my a few years ago. God bless your testimony and your beautiful song.

    Gretchen, I read that book about 14 years ago while separated from my husband who took his own life a year later. I can't remember everything about it but it did help me. I grew up in church but really have surrendered my a few years ago. God bless your testimony and your beautiful song.

  • Vicki
    Vicki Georgia
    Needed to see this today. It was meant for me to read. Thank you! ?

    Needed to see this today. It was meant for me to read. Thank you! ?

  • Yolanda Torres
    Yolanda Torres Texas
    That was so inspirational I cried. Thank you so much for sharing. Very very beautiful

    That was so inspirational I cried. Thank you so much for sharing. Very very beautiful

  • Alyce Miller
    Alyce Miller South carolina
    This s so beautiful .

    This s so beautiful .

  • Carolyn
    Carolyn South Carolina
    Going thru a very trying time in my life mentally and physically. The devil is raging in my life but I know GOD'S GOT THIS I really needed to read your testamony and hear that song! Thanks for sharing God bless you!

    Going thru a very trying time in my life mentally and physically. The devil is raging in my life but I know GOD'S GOT THIS I really needed to read your testamony and hear that song! Thanks for sharing God bless you!

  • Jean Meadows Surface
    Jean Meadows Surface Myrtle Beach, SC
    Beautiful testimoney and an outstanding song. Hooe to hear nore from you. God Bless you Gretchen.

    Beautiful testimoney and an outstanding song.
    Hooe to hear nore from you.
    God Bless you Gretchen.

  • Garlett
    Garlett ladson
    Deeply touched . May all who hears it will be also

    Deeply touched . May all who hears it will be also

  • Kitty
    Kitty Sumter sc
    Your testimony and song is a blessing to hear.May God continue to bless you .Thanks for sharing.Where can I purchase the song and your book.plz send me info on fb.

    Your testimony and song is a blessing to hear.May God continue to bless you .Thanks for sharing.Where can I purchase the song and your book.plz send me info on fb.

  • Gretchen Keskeys
    Gretchen Keskeys
    I am so touched by your comments. I really appreciate that you take the time to share your heart. It means so much to me. My greatest prayer when I wrote "Then I Met Jesus" was that it would encourage believers and bring hope to those searching. God is so awesome and He does answer our prayers. I am overwhelmed with gratitude. And to you Kitty - my album "Walking in the Spirit" is on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, CD Baby. Then I Met Jesus is on the album. You can also download the single on my blog. It is my gift. God bless you all! :)

    I am so touched by your comments. I really appreciate that you take the time to share your heart. It means so much to me. My greatest prayer when I wrote "Then I Met Jesus" was that it would encourage believers and bring hope to those searching. God is so awesome and He does answer our prayers. I am overwhelmed with gratitude. And to you Kitty - my album "Walking in the Spirit" is on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, CD Baby. Then I Met Jesus is on the album. You can also download the single on my blog. It is my gift. God bless you all! smile

  • Treasure
    Treasure Glassboro NJ
    Thank you I'm not sure why that showed up on my feed but I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate it. I've been a Christian for many years but I think the most profound part of my life was when my oldest passed away at Age 4 some 40 years ago. And I thank Jesus that he was there for her and told her about heaven two weeks before she passed

    Thank you I'm not sure why that showed up on my feed but I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate it. I've been a Christian for many years but I think the most profound part of my life was when my oldest passed away at Age 4 some 40 years ago. And I thank Jesus that he was there for her and told her about heaven two weeks before she passed

  • Ester Ocon
    Ester Ocon Block 21, Lot 58 Area H, Phase3 San Rafael V San Jose Del Monte Sapang Palay Bulacan, Philippines
    I really praise God you met Jesus as your Lord and Saviour, wonderful testimony beautiful song. I know you can write more beautiful songs to encourage more believer or unbeliever.Thank you so much for sharing your life testimony and your beautiful song. May our awesome and grateful God will bless you more full and abundance.!!!

    I really praise God you met Jesus as your Lord and Saviour, wonderful testimony beautiful song. I know you can write more beautiful songs to encourage more believer or unbeliever.Thank you so much for sharing your life testimony and your beautiful song. May our awesome and grateful God will bless you more full and abundance.!!!

  • Nancy Reece
    Nancy Reece Rahleigh N.C.
    That music was just so inspiring and the messages written were also.I will send this to friends!Thank you very much!

    That music was just so inspiring and the messages written were also.I will send this to friends!Thank you very much!

  • Jenny Phillips
    Jenny Phillips Jonesboro
    Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, also, but I suffer from the same negative emotion you talked about. I have all my life.i want to be healed (transformed) like you were, so I can live victoriously and bless others as well. Listening to you song brought tears of hope. My soul cried out, "yes, Lord, that's what I want/need!" I want to down- load your song and when I die, I want this song played. I am 73 and I've lived over three score and ten... Thank you and blessings!

    Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, also, but I suffer from the same negative emotion you talked about. I have all my life.i want to be healed (transformed) like you were, so I can live victoriously and bless others as well.
    Listening to you song brought tears of hope. My soul cried out, "yes, Lord, that's what I want/need!" I want to down- load your song and when I die, I want this song played. I am 73 and I've lived over three score and ten...
    Thank you and blessings!

  • Gretchen Keskeys
    Gretchen Keskeys
    I love reading your messages. They are so touching and it is an answer to prayer that this song and words are an encouragement in your walk. And Jenny what you shared, that is so beautiful. God bless you all!

    I love reading your messages. They are so touching and it is an answer to prayer that this song and words are an encouragement in your walk. And Jenny what you shared, that is so beautiful. God bless you all!

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