Unlikely rebel

Approach many women in the church and if they’re being honest, they’ll tell you they
• try hard to keep it all together;
• are frustrated that being good doesn’t deliver the perfect life;
• feel trapped in expectations;
• make decisions based on “shoulds”;
• feel selfish when they say no; and
• are uncertain of their place in God’s kingdom.
Between the desire to please God, the need to feel valued, and the compulsion to make everyone around them happy, women often find themselves denying their desires. It’s safer to stay in the life of “shoulds”—even if it means being spiritually and emotionally disconnected.
Kelli Gotthardt knows their pain. Always considered a “good girl,” she threw herself into every ministry, saying yes to every request her church family made. On the outside, her life looked completely together—but she was drowning in self-doubt and shame. Unlikely Rebel is the story of how Kelly slowly shed shoulds and shame, learning to love God and love who He created her to be.
The journey from the comfort of doing everything expected of a perfect pastor’s wife to the uncertainty of living authentically and true to her unique calling is equal parts exhausting and exhilarating. Many Christians condemned her, responding with fear or anger to her greater intimacy with God’s calling when it didn’t match their own vision. For others, though, her journey inspired courage to embrace God’s path for their own lives.
Now Kelli invites other women to discover God’s leading in their lives, learning that if they throw off the despondency of undeserved shame, abundant life awaits.

Kelli’s memoir, Unlikely Rebel: A Church Girls Journey Out of Shoulds and Shame was published in the fall of 2015. In it, she shares authentically about the exhaustion of trying to please God and the freedom of leaning into love. She also blogs regularly about the intersection of intimacy with God and strategic leadership, soul care and her own spiritual journey.