Some of you might have noticed that I missed a post on Thursday evening. Well, you are absolutely right! I have been crazy busy and never found the time to get to it before Thursday. I had full intentions of writing it this past weekend, but I had something completely different and unexpected come up.

This unexpected thing is something I feel God is calling me to focus on right now. After a lot of prayer, I have decided to take a break from blogging. This calling is a little bit bigger than my blog right now and I’m going to put my full attention towards it (besides finishing school and my internship). I might pop in here and there, but consider me MIA for a while. Rest assured, I will be back. Hang tight and God Bless. I’ll share details when the time is right! ūüôā

To Those Who Have/Are Struggling with Divorce in Some Way

First let me say that I always promise to be honest. I’m going to share some personal things and I hope you take them for their purpose in sharing this message and look at the big picture.


My parents got divorced when I was nine. I knew it was coming, but I hoped with all of my being that it would work out, that things would get better. I remember very vividly the feeling of heart break, confusion, and sadness the day that I was sat down and told that my parents’ marriage was over. My nine year old world came crashing down in a matter of minutes.

It got easier. I was more accepting of the situation as I got older. And then high school started. During those four years I struggled a lot, emotionally, spiritually, mentally, and even physically at times. It’s a confusing hard time in a teenager’s life and having parents in separate homes and not fully understanding what happened makes it more difficult.

I am the oldest of three. I was the big sister and felt pressure to be “perfect” for my siblings and my mom. This affected my mental health much more than I thought at the time. I wanted to be the best of the best because I felt that was my duty. I had to fulfill it so there wasn’t so much pressure on my mom to be perfect.

Like I’ve said before, I grew up in a Christian home. I went to church regularly, but I always felt like I couldn’t see or feel God during the tough times. I felt like I was alone. I felt depressed. I felt worthless. I felt like there was no way out and this was my forever. I would lay in bed many nights and cry til my eyes were puffed shut. As a result, I drank a lot. I smoked occasionally. I partied. I snuck out of the house to go do what “cool kids do”. I tried to fill a void with temptations from the enemy that left me more broken than before.

Looking back, I honestly believe many of these insecurities stemmed from feeling emotionally broken from my parents’ divorce. Don’t¬†get me wrong, I love both of my parents SO much and do not blame them individually for this what so ever. Divorce is from the devil and he thrives in the brokenness that follows it. That is who is to blame. The problem with high school Amanda was instead of drawing closer to the Lord during tough times, I looked for comfort elsewhere (because of free will) and dug myself a deeper damaging hole.

I have learned a lot since high school. I think I needed to experience and feel how I did to appreciate the love and comfort that I can feel through Jesus. I now know that during the struggles He is there. Whether I feel or see Him or not, He is right there walking the walk with me and ALL I have to do is turn to Him. This was something I fought and fought in high school because I wanted to do it on my own. But, we can’t fight the devil alone. We can’t fight the emotional problems that divorces leaves us with all by ourselves. The enemy grabs ahold of that pain, especially when that pain is present from a young age and feels normal, and drags you down until he’s taken all of you. But the good Lord can pull you out and make you whole again. I promise I promise I promise. You have to trust Him and let Him work His magic. Find the good things. Seek Him. It gets better.

Words of advice to divorced parents from a child of divorce:

1. Make your kids feel incredibly loved– Middle and high school teenagers can be hard to relate to. I couldn’t stand my mom back then but she always made sure I knew I was loved. I encourage you to always always always make sure they know thy are loved and that you are there no matter what. Hug and kiss them when they don’t want you to. Leave them love notes (even your sons). Be their biggest cheerleader.

2. Make sure they know they can talk to you about anything– They probably won’t want to. But help them feel comfortable and open to share their struggles with you so they know they have you as an outlet if they choose to come to you.

3. Encourage Jesus– I would not be where I am today without the Christian foundation I grew up with. Don’t overdo it, but always give them Jesus reminders, set those moral standards, and keep building that foundation and praying for them. They’ll appreciate it someday.

Words of advice for kids of divorced parents from a girl who has been there:

1. See the light– Whether your parents are currently going through a divorce or you’re in high school, or even college. Know that it WILL get better. You might not even notice the effect it’s had on you because it seems normal. The enemy has made it feel like it’s part of who you are and there’s no changing the damage. That is the farthest thing from true. You are a precious child of God and He has BIG things for you. Keep finding the positives. Strive for happiness. Seek God for comfort.

2. Talk about it– I strongly encourage you not to hold it all in. It builds up and other negative things build upon that until you create this person that isn’t you. I felt for so long like I couldn’t express how divorce made me really feel. Talk to friends you TRULY trust. Talk to your parents. Talk to a counselor (that’s what I did for a while). Get things off of your chest before they pile up.

3. Don’t blame yourself or your parents– Divorce is from the devil. Period. It’s NOT your fault. If you feel like it is, that is a message straight from satan dragging you down. Accept the situation for what it is and move forward. You are not to blame and don’t resent your parents for it. Sin is everywhere in this world and unfortunately, a life changing sin affected your world. But God calls us to love and forgive. Blame The devil and fight against him, not your loving parents and especially not yourself.

Dear God,

Thank you for always being our biggest comforter, even when we cannot see or feel it. I pray that you show those who desperately need you during the dark times of divorce that you are there for them and that all they need to do is reach out to you. I pray that you show them that you want to be there for them, to hold them, to talk with them, and to show them that they will overcome it. Let them see that they are bigger than the situation they’re in and that with your help they can turn it around and use it for good someday. They CAN overcome it, with your help. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Much love,


PS: Always here to chat if you need it ūüôā

Seven Tips on How to (Almost) Four Point College

It’s finally the last semester of college and looking over my transcript I have reflected on some of the habits that I created to earn myself the GPA I currently have. Let me give you a little bit of background. I started at two different community colleges. One was close to home and the other was in Grand Rapids. I left with a 3.8 and 4.0. I transferred to Grand Valley. I maintained a 4.0 up until my junior year winter semester where my GPA got brought down to a 3.9. I THINK that’s what I’ll graduate with (depending on this semester). Pretty close though, right?


I don’t share this to brag what so ever. I just want to share some of my insight. I’ve had a lot of people ask me how I did it. I’m not a genius. I’m just an average college girl who was motivated and at one point trying to get into grad school. I’m going to give you a few tips that helped me get good grades.

1. Study study study– towards the end of college I slacked a little more in this area, but during my sophomore year I took anatomy and had no other choice but to study my booty off if I wanted an A. Every week after the two days I met for class I would make it a point to look over all of the material again to try to engrave it into my brain. This also made it WAY easier when the exam came around because I already basically knew everything. So the most important thing you can do is spend time in your notes. Even if it’s just a quick look over, anything helps.

2. Stay focused– it is SO easy to get distracted and unmotivated during the middle of the semester. I always did my best to really focus on the grade that I wanted and what I would have to do to get that. I envisioned the feeling of accomplishment I would have if I did get an A. Keep your eye on the prize.

3. Think big picture– for most of college I was dead set on grad school of some sort. I knew to get into any physical therapy or physicians assistant school I would need not a good, but great GPA. Whether grad school is something you’re thinking about or not, think about employers, your parents, yourself, and whoever else those grades might matter to and let that motivate you.

4. Tackle what you can handle– college has SO many opportunities. Which are GREAT. But I strongly encourage you to be realistic about what you can handle and make sure you’re giving yourself enough time for school. Learn to say no if it means you gain much needed homework time.

4. Stay organized/Don’t procrastinate– my planner is ridiculous. I wouldn’t recommend being as organized as I am, but I DO recommend writing everything out for the semester that’s due so you can stay on top of things (side note: This¬†is the Lilly Pulitzer planner¬†I got for 2019 except mine is the smaller one and I LOVE the formatting and bright colors. Recommend!). Do NOT procrastinate. I honestly don’t know that I know a college kid that doesn’t procrastinate, but I was always the opposite. I was the nerd who had her homework done a month ahead of time. Which is excessive and unnecessary (I just felt better getting it done way ahead), BUT procrastinating allows stress and anxiety to build up. It creates sloppy rushed work. Get your assignments, readings, and exams organized and work on them earlier rather than later.

5. Read your books– some classes we all know you don’t have to. But for the most part, when professors suggested we read, I read. And it helped A LOT. It just reiterated what the professors were saying and just reinforced my learning.

6. Make sure you’re¬†passionate about your degree– I learned VERY quickly that chemistry was not a class I would ever be able to take and keep my sanity, so that ultimately drove me to change things up with my degree. I found a path that I’m super passionate about (exercise science) and found the classes to be so much easier because I was genuinely interested in the material. If you’re struggling and not interested at all in your classes, something probably isn’t right. Granted, we all have classes we don’t like, but I’m talking about a majority. Make sure you’re working towards a passion.

7. Give yourself YOU time– it is SO easy to get burnt out in college. I definitely have done that to myself so many semesters. But I’ve finally learned how to balance my life better and not feel bad about kicking back and enjoying myself too. Sometimes the homework or studying can wait until you get your mind right and give yourself some YOU time.

These are a few tips that helped me keep my GPA where it’s at. I hope you find them helpful!

Much love,


What Are Your New Years Resolutions?

It’s finally a new year. Time to start fresh, build better habits, and be the best version of you. If it didn’t happen in 2017, or 2018, it will surely happen in 2019.

Do you want to lose weight? Manage your money better? Quit smoking? Stress less? Take a wild trip?

These are some common New Years resolutions. While these are great things to work on, one resolution that seems to be at the bottom of many priority lists is building better faith.

What are your priorities? Where are you at in your faith? Do you have a relationship with God? If not, have you ever thought about it?

I’m not trying to preach at anyone because everyone has their own ways of being and people who do find the Lord find Him at their own times and at their own paces. But, I do encourage you to think about where you’re at in this area of your life. We all want to get fit, eat better, have more money, and feel less stressed. But we often forget about our spiritual health. We forget to think about how we can make more time for the Word or spend more time praying for others or open up a brand new world of following Jesus.

Focusing on this area of our well-being and spending more time with the Lord makes a HUGE difference in how we see the world. Believe me, I’ve been in the “Not sure how I feel about faith, I’m going to avoid it” boat and the “I want to do what He wants me to do and work on being a better christian” boat and number two trumps number one with flying colors. Number two is a beautiful place to be. Personally, it motivates me. It makes me want to improve other areas of my life. It gives me purpose. It makes me feel at peace and content even during the times of chaos. And the more time I’ve spent with Jesus, the more intense these feel-good feelings get.

As we celebrate the New Year today, think about your resolutions. I encourage you to commit to a workout, work on stress relief, get involved in a money management program, go on that impulsive trip you’ve been craving, but don’t forget the most important piece of your life that holds you together. Don’t forget your Creator. The One who walks along side of you during all of these resolutions. The One who wants to get to know you better. The One who is waiting for you to open your heart up to Him and let Him work on you and through you. Let 2019 be a year of spiritual growth.


Dear God,

Thank you for another year of life. Another year to create, appreciate, and achieve. Let 2019 be one for the books. I pray that people see You in a new and deeper light this year. I pray that non-believers find your love, and that believers dive deeper in their faith. Thank you for health, safety, freedom, and a fresh start. Amen. 

Much love,



Tune In to See 2019 Blog Updates

HAPPY HOLIDAYS LOVES! I hope you all have some wonderful plans for the upcoming holidays. Eat lots of goodies, spend time with family, and find some time to relax!


With the new year approaching, I’ve decided to make a few GOOD changes with this blog. This will be my last post for 2018, so I can enjoy the holidays and browse/prep some new content ideas.

I’ve been researching and learning a lot about blogging lately. It’s turning into a newfound passion of mine so I’m tweaking and changing as I continue and as a I learn.

So here are a few updates to expect:

1. Upgrade- I’ve been using a free WordPress template because I wasn’t sure what my plan was with this whole thing yet, but I decided to upgrade so more options to play with and an actual website: . YAY.

2. Pictures- I was previously using some of the pictures that were just offered from the wordpress gallery and some of my own but I’m going to TRY to stay away from this and only use mine to be more original. This could get difficult with lack of time to take pictures sometimes but that’s my goal. Although some of you maybe didn’t notice the difference!

3. Format- I have definitely been all over the place with posting and formatting and trying to figure this whole thing out (at least I think I have been) My plan is to be more consistent with formatting/fonts/etc. so everything will hopefully look a little more clean.

4. Consistency- I have also been posting SUPER randomly. But I want to create a consistent schedule so you know what to expect and when to expect it. SO, this is my favorite news because I’m so excited. Every TUESDAY at 7:00pm I will post a deeper faith-based blog and every THURSDAY at 7:00pm I will post a health/lifestyle blog. If this gets to be too much I will definitely let you know if I decide to cut back on posts, but I’m trusting that God will give me what I need to maintain that schedule. I LOVE my faith posts. But, I also haven’t been posting about health or lifestyle as much as I want to as well. So, this way we get the best of both worlds and you know exactly what to expect!

Like I said, I’m learning and changing as I see necessary so if I make any other updates, I will be sure to let you know. Bear with me as I work on these changes and do my best! Some of you maybe didn’t even notice some of these things I mentioned, so if that’s you then ignore my perfectionism (the content is really what matters, right?). I hope you are all as excited as I am to take on these new changes. Expect a post on January 1st to kick off the new year.

Also, if you’re interested in seeing some of my day to day foods, workout videos, and overall tidbits about my day or different recipes/quotes/happiness stuff, follow my instagram account: amanda_bartle_


I have another account, amandabartle_health that I used in the past to post all of my “health related” info, but I discontinued it because I found it much easier to just post everything on my personal page. So that one is NOT where I post anymore (it’s only still active because I’ve been using it for some ideas and such).

The important things:

-Keep an eye out for Tuesday/Thursday posts at 7:00pm starting January 1, 2019

-Follow me on Instagram to see some good stuff or to stay tuned in on my life

-Have a wonderful Christmas and fun-filled New Year’s celebration!

Talk soon.

Much love,


From Day One to Senior Year

Hi again! I hope everyone has been enjoying the beautiful fall weather as much as I have. As promised, in this post I’ll talk a little bit more about me.


Just some quick fun facts to get us started. I will be graduating in April from Grand Valley State University with my bachelor’s of science in exercise science. I have a passion for health, fitness and nutrition. They’re fun topics for me. With that, preventative health is kind of my niche. I love to read, be outside, drink smoothies or coffee, run, lift weights, explore new places, and bake. I’m a breakfast food fanatic. Fall is hands down my favorite season, cliche or not. Sundays feels are something I crave. Family is¬†SO important to me. I have a younger sister and younger brother and older stepsister and older stepbrother. I live with my brother and two other roommates (living with a sibling after high school=best decision ever). I have a wonderful boyfriend and puppy who fill my earthly heart with joy.

I grew up in a Christian home, primarily with my mama who loved the Lord. I cannot thank her enough for providing the Christian foundation that has stayed close to my heart through the good and the bad, through the rough seasons and through the happy ones, and through the times I was distant with God and through the times where he’s been my best friend. Without that foundation, I would not what so ever be in the position I am in today. So, thanks to my wonderful family for that.

I grew up in a divorced home. I don’t think that’s easy for any kid to go through regardless of how “well” the divorce might have went. I think all in all kids do struggle with it in their own ways, whether their parents can always see it or not. I was young and the oldest of three, so it was time for big sister to¬†really¬†be¬†big sister. Don’t get me wrong, I always grew up in church and had wonderful support systems and my parents both loved me and my siblings to pieces; however, I think divorce steals a little bit of your heart. It naturally wounds and causes confusion. It’s a traumatic event, in my opinion, for anyone and everyone involved. It set the pace for my rocky teenage years.

From then until my first year of college, I was lost. I had morals that had been instilled in me from day 1 that I held close, but the desires to belong somewhere in school, fit in, act and a be a certain way according to society were difficult to fight through. I talked a way I wasn’t raised to. I acted certain ways to “be cool”. I was constantly on the look out to impress people. And the most interesting part about it all was deep down I was ashamed of who I was. Those morals I had been taught convicted me because I knew I wasn’t acting or being who I wanted to be. I was living for society, not for Jesus.

It wasn’t until my first year of college where I really actively thought about where I needed change. I knew it was time for a reality check. I moved into an apartment by myself close to a community college pretty close to home. I wanted my freedom and I wanted it as soon as I could possibly get my hands around it. And sooner than later I found myself empty and emotionally struggling in an apartment alone, with only one voice listening. It was a long year of personal growth that was MUCH needed and I am so thankful for. God uses the times where we feel broken to draw us closer to Him… his plan all along.

Little by little, He has been pulling me closer. I transferred to a university the following year and my faith was tested once again. All alone in a brand new place with roommates I didn’t know and not really any idea what I was really going to college for. And in that moment of trusting Him to bring the right people into my life, in walked my wonderful gift of a man who was exactly what I needed (and two years later we’re going strong).

Now, I am a senior in college and I cannot believe where the time has gone. I look back and see how much I’ve grown as a person and in my faith and I’m reminded that the journey has just begun. The BEST part is reflecting on the work God has done in my life to put me where I am at today. He has placed the most important people in my life at the perfect times. He has molded my career journey and has constantly had to remind me to trust His plan. He has NEVER left my side. Seriously. As much as I don’t always feel His presence, it is so obvious through how my life has fallen into place that He has been right there the whole time. He has filled my life with overwhelming joy (when I choose to allow that joy into my heart).

In a nutshell, that’s my journey so far. And let me be the first to tell you, it is far from perfect. I have bawled my eyes out in confusion, went through lower seasons, and have questioned many things. I’m still learning how to trust God with every aspect of my life to avoid some of the worldly anxiety I experience. On the flip side, I’ve laughed my stomach out, I’ve found happiness in the small moments, and I’ve smiled at little things God shows me from day to day. Life is a road trip.

If you take anything away from this post, let it be that God is with you through every season. I have had (and still do have) so many times in my life where I felt alone and like I was doing this life by myself. But, the problem was I wasn’t taking the time to really¬†see¬†Him. I wasn’t slowing things down to notice that beautiful sunset He made or that sermon that spoke directly to me but I was too busy looking through the bulletin. He is¬†always¬†there and looking back from the day I got baptized when I was seven until now, He has never left my side. Everything has happened exactly the way He intended. He’s with you through every moment, sometimes you just have to look a little harder. He’s got you. He’s your eternal best friend, don’t forget that.


Dear God,

Thank you so much for the opportunity to share a brief history of my past in hopes that someone else will relate to it. I pray that this post reaches out to whoever you intended and they draw closer to you. I pray that you continue to reveal yourself to us and remind us that you’re walking through this life journey with us. We don’t have to do it alone. I pray all of this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Much love,


Where it Begins


Hi! I’m Amanda and this is my first blog past. EEEK! I will be completely honest when I say a blog was not something I really have thought TOO much about before. I do enjoy writing my thoughts on paper and I have an instagram account where I share some of those ideas, but a blog seemed like too much work for me. It seemed too vulnerable for me. I love sharing my experiences, but to type out possible pages and pages did not seem like something I would enjoy (mostly because I would rather cut my toes off than write college papers). I wasn’t sure if sharing the nitty gritty about myself (not just the happy stuff) could really help anyone or if people even cared to read what I have to say. I didn’t think I would have enough time to do something like that. I doubted my abilities. But, a little push was what I needed (keep reading to understand), and here I am.

I was scrolling through social media when I woke up this morning and ended up on a girl’s page that I don’t know, but I follow (How many can relate? LOL). While I was admiring her inspirational posts and quotes, I peeked at her bio and saw she had a blog. I opened it and read a little bit and thought to myself “Wow, anybody can see this and she gets to share anything and everything with people. Especially people who maybe need to see some of her motivation.”

At that point, I thought to myself “What do I have to lose?” People can love it or hate it. I’m not forcing anyone to read it. I’m just sharing my life in hopes that someone who needs to hear what I have to say will benefit from it.

Then came the push. I have always been the kind of person to be SUPER hard on myself and doubt everything. I always want a for sure answer and I always have to plan every little thing out to give myself time to think about it (stay tuned, I will most likely hit on this at some point in a blog). But, not this time.

Not to toot my own horn by any means, but I have always been told that I am a good writer. My parents have always told other people since I was a little girl that my writing is beautiful. My teachers in grade school always told me they were impressed with how I could write. I think it’s a hidden talent that I never thought much of. It’s hard to compliment your own work, but my opinion is I think when I’m enjoying what I’m writing about, it flows. I have a tendency to over explain myself and what better way to do that then a blog? Like I said before, college papers can kiss my butt and the stress that comes with them made me think for a while that I sucked at writing. I firmly believe the devil uses these negative situations to try to outweigh the gifts God has given us.

Last year, I decided on a random day that I wanted to write a book. I had five different classes, was the secretary of a club, volunteered, worked, worked out about 4 times a week, meal prepped when I could and still thought I had time to write an entire novel. So, one day I hopped on the elliptical and started an outline. I wrote down ideas, chapters, all of these random notes I would want to have in my book. And at that moment, I realized I would not at all be able to write a book at this point in my life (SURPRISE SURPRISE). BUT, the desire God placed in my heart to write has never gone anywhere. So, I set the book idea on the back burner (for now), but this longing to get my thoughts and ideas on paper has continued to bite at me.

I enjoy sharing my thoughts and ideas when it can benefit others. Like I said, I have an instagram page (¬†amanda_bartle_¬†), where I share some of my health tips and try to share a bit of inspiration when I find the time to. I have always had this desire buried deep inside me to explode my experiences somewhere and that page has been the perfect start. And also like I said, the vulnerability of a blog kind of freaked me out. But, I believe we live in a society where everyone is expected to live and reflect these “perfect” lives. We all know we have struggles, we’re not perfect people, but our culture says we need to try to act perfect anyway. So, why not be an example of a college girl who maybe appears like she has it all together at times but is a hot mess more often than not? Why not embrace that example and share my imperfections for people to relate to and realize they aren’t alone? Why not share some health or life ideas that could help people? And most importantly, why not spread the love for our Lord and Savior and my faith journey for those who might be walking a similar path? Or for a non-believer to stumble upon and rethink the idea of Jesus?

So, I’m sitting in my bed without putting much think time into it and all of these thoughts come rushing into my head, and BOOM. I’m on a free blog page making my own. A completely out of the blue idea that I do believe God will use for His glory and good. He erased the doubts and flooded my mind with all of the reasons TO do it, rather than the reasons not to. And I went for it.

I can’t promise I will be able to blog as much as I would like to, but I CAN promise I will put my heart and soul into each post and hope that everyone who sees them can get something out of them. I want this to be something I do kind of on a whim when I’m feeling whole-heartedly involved in it. I don’t want to make it a “chore” if you will and make my writing reflect that. I want to be genuine, real, and enjoy every second of it so my readers can sense that too.

Here are some of the general topics I PLAN (key word “PLAN”) to cover:

-Huge impacts God has made on my life (and can for you) and how he has knocked at my door more often than not

-My life journey so far (struggling with my future, changes I’ve made, happy moments I’ve learned to cherish)

-Spiritual struggles and how I have dealt with them

-Health ideas meaning fitness, nutrition, and things I’ve learned being an exercise science major and growing my knowledge in the field¬†(YAY)

-Life hacks/tips? (Maybe)

-Funny moments that maybe you can relate to

-Anything and everything!

I hope that gives you a little bit better idea of where I plan to head with this. Like I said, I have no idea how God REALLY intends to use me through this blog, so who knows what might change.

I hope through this blog people can connect. I hope people can laugh at me or with me. I hope people can feel encouraged. I hope I can sometimes give people a little touch of what they needed for that day. I hope people find things helpful and can relate. I am by no means perfect. I’m a human being who makes mistakes on the daily. I am learning about myself everyday and little by little (I mean LITTLE BY LITTLE, it’s a difficult process) I’m learning how to better myself and be better for not only me and people I surround myself with, but the One who matters most. That’s why we’re all here, right? To serve the Lord who put us here in the first place.

The last thing I want to leave with is my door is ALWAYS open. I love people and I want anyone who reads this and needs a little bit more to feel invited and welcome to reach out to me. I am not a counselor, I am not a trainer. I’m just me. I just talk about my experiences and I am more than happy to talk with you about yours.


I want to say a quick prayer at the end of each of my blogs. I’m here for a reason and I want to pray for who might be reading, who might read in the future, and that God uses what I wrote for His glory to reach others. So, here’s my prayer for today.

Dear God, thank you for the opportunity be writing this at this very moment. Thank you for using me for Your good. I pray that whoever reads this (and future blogs) feels something from you and it helps them in some way, shape, or form. I pray that you guide people who read in a direction that is for Your mighty will. We thank and love you always, Amen.

Much love,


PS: If I have an idea where my next blog will go I will keep let you know through my PS notes. Stay tuned next time for my background and how I’ve gotten to where I’m at (spiritually, career-wise, maybe both?, maybe one? we shall see!)

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