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Let's find out!




EP. 178: What to Do When the Journey Gets Hard with Ruth Chou Simons

Are you preoccupied with the pursuit of your next goal? Do you feel a sense of urgency to be further along in your journey than you are? 


The horizon line presents as a clear fixed point that with just the right amount of will and stamina can be reached. We define the route, build up our strength and with ruthless conviction set our sights on the finish line. 


Painstakingly we put one foot in front of the other with intention and purpose taking on whatever crosses our path along the way. Yet somehow the journey becomes longer or isn’t quite as direct.


“And the more we push ourselves to grasp our goals, the more they seem to vanish beyond our reach.”

Despite our best efforts, our plan fails and the destination that promised to be the answer to the ache in our souls eludes us still.


I only have this amount of time to …

I should be at this point in my business already …

If I could just cross this threshold then I would be on track…


To fall short is to fall behind and so amidst our disappointment and disillusionment, we quickly scramble to find the next point to fix our gaze upon. Because if we don’t have a point to chase after what is really tethering us down? 


With an art degree in hand, today’s guest had dreams she longed to see come true. If she could have snapped her fingers at the time, she would have loved her world to explode with opportunity, to see her art in galleries or people buying her work. But as life often does, her course changed over time and she nestled the dream deep, resolving that its fullest form would be realized only in the quiet, hidden parts of her life. What she never could have anticipated though was that what she thought was deferred was actually blossoming and building as she was faithful to the path right in front of her. 


She is a kindred spirit, curator of beauty and a well of wisdom in being present to the whisper of God in our every moment. That is why I am so excited to be joined by Ruth Chou Simons again on today’s episode of The Mary Marantz Show.

Ruth Chou Simons is a Wall Street Journal bestselling and award-winning author of several books and Bible studies, including Pilgrim, GraceLaced, Beholding and Becoming, and When Strivings Cease. She is an artist, entrepreneur, podcaster, and speaker, using each of these platforms to spiritually sow the Word of God into people’s hearts. Through social media, her online shoppe at, and the GraceLaced Collective community, Simons shares her journey of God’s grace intersecting daily life with word and art. Ruth and her husband, Troy, are grateful parents to six boys—their greatest adventure.


Mary’s new book, slow growth equals strong Roots is HERE! Click HERE to Order your copy today!

After almost ten years of stewarding her company, Ruth was ready to step into the next season. In her mind, it was time to entrust her business to someone else and move to the next level of her life and career. But no matter how much time or effort she spent focusing on achieving that goal she continued to see it not come to fruition.


“When we do life’s journey without Jesus, we will always find ourselves restless. We will hope in vain that once we get over that next hill beyond the horizon or reach the peak we will finally feel accomplished and satisfied. But the thrill we are waiting for will never come because apart from Jesus… it can’t.”


The fundamental desire was not a bad one as she was gifted and called for this work but it was what she was chasing within the goal that would either lead her away from Jesus or lead her to Him.


Getting to the next level was less about the timeline of the business and more about the timeline she held against herself…


“What we are really after is the sense that we didn’t waste our life and that we matter. That the time and effort we have put in and the hard things we have navigated through weren’t wasted. And if we really get down to it we are actually chasing the peace to know that God is going to be pleased with what we’ve done”


As she sat with the reality of her disappointment, she began to see that what felt like a dead end was actually a grace-filled guidepost giving a greater sense of direction to her life.  It was the mercy of God to see her goal unsatisfied because instead of being stuck in a race defined by someone else, she could freely run the race designed for her. 


So whether chasing your dream is costing you your presence or you are feeling the pressure to be somewhere you aren’t, this episode is the reset you need to be right where you are.


Join Ruth and me as we discuss how to draw near to the heart of God on the journey of life and the beauty of being faithful right where you are with what you have. 


Tune in to hear:

  • Why we are made to not feel at home here

  • What the principles of offroading can teach us about the presence of God

  • The difference between waiting with God versus for God


This episode is a breath of fresh air and a reminder to take a step back and open our eyes to the place we hold in a story that has already been in motion since the beginning of time.


Just as we are wired to chase things that matter we have already been given a life of purpose and worth beyond what we do or accomplish.


So, friend, take a deep breath because no matter the point in your story you are held. 

May this episode be your reminder: 

“You don’t have to save yourself, He has got you.”


I can’t wait for you to take a listen! And if you are looking to give up comparing, performing, and achieving for your worth, I think you’ll LOVE my new book Slow Growth Equals Strong Roots! Available now everywhere books are sold! And while you’re at it, take our Achiever Quiz to see which of the 5 Achiever Types you are….


Let's find out!



Let's find out!


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