Bonnie Gray, Sweet Like Jasmine

In May, I was allowed to take a mini-Sabbatical of sorts. Between pastoring University Baptist Church of Baton Rouge and starting my new role as the Associate Executive Coordinator of CBF North Carolina, I had time to invest time in my family, sleep in, and enjoy long runs and walks without a meeting or deadline to cut it short. 

I found myself often reflecting on not only the wonderful four years we had in Louisiana but much older memories from my 20s, teenage years, and childhood. What an emotional rollercoaster of remembering things with fondness, regret, joy, terror, failure, and accomplishment. 

It’s funny when you think about the past. Sometimes the way you experienced things then is the same as you remember them now. For other memories, distance has altered the way you remember the experience. 

“When I was a little girl, all I wanted to do was to make my mom proud. To make her happy. She was the sun, and my heart orbited around her. But God was opening my heart to see that the mother I wanted, the mother I tried to love into being, didn’t exist. It was time to accept the reality of the toxic mother I had,” said Bonnie Gray on the CBF Podcast. 

Gray, an author, and spiritual retreat leader, sat down with us to discuss the process of reflecting on the past and finding God’s presence in her new book “Sweet Like Jasmine.” 

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Andy Hale is the creator and host of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Podcast. Hale is the Associate Executive Coordinator of CBF North Carolina. He’s also served as CBF’s Church Start Specialist, the founding pastor of Mosaic Church of Clayton, and the senior pastor of University Baptist Church of Baton Rouge. Follow on Twitter @haleandy.

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