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Sneak Peek: A Woman Overwhelmed

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Sneak Peek: A Woman Overwhelmed

10 Oct Posted by in Sneak Peeks | Comments Off on Sneak Peek: A Woman Overwhelmed
Sneak Peek: A Woman Overwhelmed

A Woman Overwhelmed with Her Own Law

By Hayley DiMarco


Based on A Woman Overwhelmed from Abingdon Press.

I recently discovered that most of what was overwhelming me wasn’t what I actually had to do but what I told myself I needed to do, either to look good, to be good, or to do good. My self-imposed law is stressing me out because I’m not equipped with enough energy, time, or money to do all I demand myself to do.

I unearthed one of those laws just recently when my daughter asked me if I could make her chicken nuggets for breakfast. I immediately said, “No, we don’t eat chicken nuggets for breakfast. How about cereal, pancakes, or French toast?” She looked forlornly at me, and suddenly it hit me. Where is the Scripture that says, “Thou shalt not eat lunch for breakfast?” It wasn’t God’s Word but my word I was enforcing, so I quickly said, “What am I thinking? Of course you can have chicken. There’s no law that says you can’t!” Naturally, I want to feed her as healthfully as I can, what with her limited diet of chicken nuggets, mac and cheese, and hot dogs, but pretending like there is a law on

when you can eat what you eat was just making life more of battle than it needed to be.

Throughout the years, I have identified a myriad of other such Capitol Hill-worthy bills I have placed on myself, both subconsciously and deliberately, in an attempt to improve my life, to avoid being hurt, or just to git ‘er done. When I let those bills become law, I find myself overwhelmed by both my failure and the failure of others to do what I think must be done. For example, I used to think it was a requirement that the house be tidy and clean before anyone came through the front door. I wouldn’t invite people over because I didn’t have time to set the stage for their grand entrance into my “perfectly kept” home. If I felt the uncontrollable compulsion to have them come, then I would sentence myself to eight hours of community service (aka housework) to fulfill the law of the tidy home, thus unknowingly putting my law above the godliness of hospitality. For me, cleanliness isn’t next to godliness; it’s across town and closed for repairs.

When did I know I was overwhelmed by my own insanity? When obedience to God’s law could only come after obedience to my own law. When failure to fulfill my law ended in failure to fulfill His, I knew I had a problem.

The truth is, a lot of the relational problems we have find their root in our sense of responsibility to our own law. We resent others who don’t keep our laws or who reject or bad-mouth them. We fight to get everyone in line with how we think things should go when God determines how things should go. We stress when we don’t do all we have determined we must do, when it is God who works in us to do what we get done. A thorough assessment of your subconscious ideas of right and wrong, do’s and don’ts, must-haves and can’t-stands will reveal the areas in your life where you are overwhelmed. It will show you you’re overwhelmed not because there is more to do than can be done, but because you have created more to do than you were meant to do.

This week, I hope you can find peace and rest from your own personal law. Instead, meditate on the laws of God and especially on His grace, which is sufficient to cover all your failure, missteps, and misunderstandings. His grace takes away the law’s power to punish and shame you and gives you back forgiveness, love, and mercy. What does your law give you when you fail at it? Will you choose today whom you will serve-yourself or your God?


Hayley DiMarco is the best-selling author of more than 40 books, including her latest release is A Woman Overwhelmed: Finding God in the Messes of Life (Abingdon Press) and its companion Bible study. As the founder of Hungry Planet, DiMarco speaks regularly for women’s groups and events. Hayley, her pastor husband, Michael, and their daughter live outside Nashville.


To learn more about DiMarco, visit her online home She can also be found on Facebook(hayley.dimarco) and Twitter (@hayleydimarco).


Hayley DiMarco is available for interviews. 

For review copy, excerpt or interview information, contact


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