More than a conqueror

More than a conqueror
Never give up. Hold onto Jesus

How many times have you heard the scripture reference, found in Romans 8:31-39  that tells us we ARE more than conquerors – IF WE ONLY BELIEVE!!!!  

How shall we respond, is how the chapter begins.


Do you ask God sometimes: “REALLY God, am I ? Life is nothing but a struggle. Struggle seems to be opposite of conquering something – anything! And you want me to say that I am MORE than a conqueror? Come on God…. let’s get real.”

How now shall we live? (grabbing that phrase from a titled book from Chuck Colson, it’s a big read, but got some meaty stuff in it).

God is truly merciful, even when I am not. Trouble is before me night and day. People can be like sandpaper burning the heart raw. Persecution from haters (which seem to be more abounding these days). Life in general can be rough. Exhausting. the desire to quit and just give up and veg on the couch sometimes seems so tempting.

I have walked a long dry valley the past many years – sometimes even crawling through the rough terrain. So many situations of  loss, death and lack kept climbing over me like bugs in a trash can. Ick and gross, right? It wouldn’t go away. Discouragement hit me more often than I wanted. Like a bad boxing match.

Yet, I know I have to listen and heed God’s still small voice and not harden my heart when those times come upon me.  Oh, how my flesh wants to harden itself; it’s a protection of sorts. We all have within us a barrier that we put around us, especially once we’ve been ‘burnt’ to many times by things that happen to us, even sometimes things that we do by choice.

We must be cautious not to let the flesh take over our thoughts. What a fine line  that can be. We have to rely on the Word and promises of God. It is sharper than a two edged sword. 

Taking the mind and the swaying thoughts of negativity and strife, the struggle and PROCLAIM God’s promises.

Always. Do. This.

It is amazing that when we speak the Bible out-loud, the enemy has to flee! Do this for a few minutes, paying attention to the relaxing sense of peace that enters the atmosphere! God is mighty. God is true. Our flesh fails us. Our mind wanders to distant damaging places. Run to the Father…. that’s what I am gonna do right now.

Don’t let the enemy take over your life. The devil must flee at they sound of Jesus name. End of that story! Rejoice, praise and sing hallelujah!

Father, God I love you. I know you are faithful. When these taxing, trying negative things in life come to try to override me, I seek you. I run to you. Hold me with your strong right arm. I speak your promises into my life and my family. I love you Jesus. I praise you. Peace I seek for my life. I surrender all. I desire your will. My flesh bow down to what you want me to do. Amen. 

Genesis… the beginning

While writing Forever Hope, (released February 13, 2020 on Amazon), it was evident God wanted me to share my story. It’s raw, real, simple and to the point.

I will admit, there was a bit of arguing with God while writing the manuscript over those twelve months. I didn’t mind sharing the facts, but the details were a bit daunting, and I wasn’t certain I needed to share them. I’d get through a few pages, and be in tears. The emotions, the memories all came rushing up to the surface. There is something about writing our memoirs that bring to life what we are conveying. God was so merciful during those experiences. The healing THROUGH each event was absolute. Yet, there is a special bond between pen and paper that connects those who read the story. That’s why I continued writing, seeing it too its’ completion.

I will admit it was not an easy task. But the assurance of knowing that someone, or many, would be touched by the story made it all worth the effort. I prayed, talked and questioned – ‘why was it that I was chosen to live this life, with this story for this generation?’. God knows. I don’t. But in the spirit of listening to my Daddy, who knows what He is doing, I wrote. I conquered, and found a love for writing that was deeper than anticipated.

As the chapters unfolded on the computer, the assignment to offer each chapter a title that was intriguing, simple and to the point. The first chapter was the most challenging to commit to. Deciding to name it Genesis, (not after the musical group, lol), but the Genesis from the Bible. Beginnings. The start of something. That is where I began. Not as a baby, but the transitioning of my early childhood memories, a monumental move from Chicago to suburbia, which left me struggling as a child.

My mom wasn’t a great communicator. She did the best she knew how. But it was simply tough for me to move from the friends made, then to move mid way through the first semester made it more challenging. Like a huge pimple on the middle of a forehead, or sticking out like a sore thumb, is how I felt — for years. It’s awkward, those early years. Pre-Pubescent. Insecure. Uncertain of what laid ahead. But God had plans.

It was a plan He made. Two families moved to the same area only a short time before our family did. They were the ones who adopted me into their lives, as a surrogate daughter. They were the ones who introduced me to Christ. I had no idea what that meant, or how I would live that life out. But it was a preparation for my adult life. God was my safety net through tough times that would happen long before I experienced the situations.

The beginning.

When is the end? I do not know. But I trust a God that knows. He prepared my first half of my life, andif I get to live to 100ish, I get to share his grace with my faith.. My story is deep. It’s wide. And every step I took, was a step of assurance that he is with me always.

You can grab your book at Amazon for the full scope of this eventful life shared for all to be encouraged by. Live by faith. Do not doubt. The everlasting Father is amazing and trustworthy!

Hope is forever when you live in the freedom of Christ.

Prayer: Father God, thank you for your guidance, even when we do not understand what is happening. May we live in full trust of your plans. When we make decisions, let us ask you first how to follow through in each event. thank you for hope, love and your amazing grace. Without you, I can do nothing. In Jesus name. Amen .

Forever Hope -Living with hope in the midst of life’s struggles

The story of my life has been one that has had its fill of struggle. I’m sure you have your experiences as well.

What a great confidence to find peace for my soul, that only comes in Christ

We all have a story to tell.

The amazing thing is, when we share our struggle, it encourages someone else.

As I wrote this book, I will be honest to say there was a bit of conversation (one sided, don’t ya know!). I did not want to share the raw details of my life with the world. It’s personal. It’s up-close.

It’s “my” story. It’s also in the past. I am one to move on, walk into the next season with gusto, determination, and hope, not daring to get stuck in the way life was – whether it be the good or the bad.

As I would “disagree/argue” with God, that I did NOT want to share the details, my fingers just kept typing. The writing continued. The story fell onto the paper with tears, memories, love, hope and awe-ness to God, who is the Maker of my life.

How fitting it was to name the book FOREVER HOPE.
Hope is not a sometimes thing in our life. Especially if you have Jesus as friend, Savior, Lord and Guide.

I was reminded again, through each page I wrote, a deeper sense how much he loves me. How those details were simply intertwined within every fiber of my being. None of the situations were a surprise to Him. He knew my life before I was formed in my mothers womb. Jeremiah 1:5 / Psalm 139:13.

I knew that was so as I lived THROUGH the pivotal challenges, each one designed to strengthen me, not tear me down. God’s faithfulness stays strong always. We can count on Him. He never fails us. (remember, when the thought comes to your mind, asking God why would you do this… he doesn’t bring harm, the enemy, aka devil does).

I say all this, to invite you to grow stronger, not in your power, but in God’s goodness and strength. We must look to Him with all our life.

For more encouragement, click here for the link to purchase Forever Hope.

Prayer:  Lord help me to be an instrument of your love. Use my situation to help other by your Word and my testimony. Nothing goes to waste, no matter how good or bad life may look at the moment. everything changes as we trust you more. I love you Jesus. Help me every moment of every day. Amen

Forever Hope ~ Launch February 2020

It’s quite exciting to launch a new book.

In less than two years, I wrote my “story”.

A story where the “genesis” (new beginnings) began.

A place where an insecure, girl came to know the promises of Jesus Christ. The One who kept me safe. Taught me how to live, what to stay away from, and how to press into His Word, for the future awaited. Things that happened that should have rocked anyones world. But God. He sustained me through some difficult times.

Come with me. Share the heart warming friendships that I came to know, along with some tribulations. Get a cup of coffee or some tea. Ya might want to have some tissues handy. It might get emotional for ya.

You can preorder your book at Amazon now. Date set is February 13, 2020. Ebooks are also available if you like Kindle.

Join me in this journey called life.

I would love to hear a bit of your story. You have experiences to share that will help somebody! It may be hard, as it was a surprise to me, how emotional it was to write down. Each detail to so many pieces of my life, for everyone to read. Dare to grow, heal and become the person you are meant to be.

Forever Hope, by DL Rudd. Purchase on Amazon, available in print February 13, 2020.

I am looking forward to hearing YOUR story too!

Forever Hope

Available now on Amazon. You can purchase on Amazon, by clicking here.

It tells the story of hope after grief. The experiences of loss of not one, but two still born babies. Then my husband who died tragically from a car accident; he was only 38.

Never ever giving up hope. Leaning into Jesus was the only way to get through the loss, grief, sadness, hard work. Pressing into the guidance and love of the One True Father.

The story is raw, emotional and in-depth, yet an easy read. You can grab your copy on Amazon now.


Crissy J.

Forever Hope  has touched my heart and encouraged me to never lose hope no matter the circumstances. 💗🤗 I can’t wait to get through the rest of the book!

Nancy S.

 I just finished Forever Hope and am so touched. What a beautiful testimony of faith and hope.

Mike The book was really good. First time I have read a book so quickly.  

Carissa the story will help so many people! DL shares her soul by opening the curtain to her pain, which gives us all hope. 

Shannon The book is so absolutely wonderful. It touched my heart and soul. DL is a gifted writer. 

Wow is the first word that comes to mind after reading this book. I can’t remember the last time, if any, I related to a book this much. The book is so well written and with emotion. I could literally feel the author’s words being poured out in this book. It’s real, it’s raw, it’s powerful. It’s a story of healing and a story of never letting go of her faith in God. 

The author shares about her life, including the struggles, the hard times. I was so touched by this book that I shed quite a few tears. If you need healing, if you need hope, if you’re hanging on by a thread…please read this book. It will give you hope. This is a book I will cherish. It really touched my heart, reminding me that there is always hope.

JS The book is awesome! Thank you for sharing your story and your faith!

Marianne  This is so exiting. I remember when you were talking about writing a book, and now it has happened. Many hurdles you had to jump throw, many obstacles you had to dodge. You are truly a woman of determination and exuberant, full of life and energy. 

Release date: February 13, 2020

Forever Hope is on Amazon, you can get your copy by clicking here!

Trusting God Fully

My heart, mind and soul need some demolition work done on them. Why? So that the crud and old mindsets can be removed and I can be purified. This is a daily Reinvention! D.A.I.L.Y! yikes. Clean me up Jesus! I need this, so that when others look at me, my life, my shortcomings, failures and “stuff”, people will see my heart. A heart that is SOLD OUT for Jesus.

Dilapidated OLD BARN ©Photos by Design

This will bring intentional progress within my broken and busted up heart. You see, sometimes I lose patience. Sometimes I’m snarky and curt. I even have fear of what might happen, anxiety that reeks havoc on my soul, makes me worn out and tired. Even discouragement can take over my mind! Then, there’s the lack of trust. Oh my… what’s a girl to do?!?!? I have to relinquish and expose my heart to my Savior. Jesus is his name. Do you know him? He heals the wounded heart. Yes he does. He is faithful.

©Photos By Design 2020

Lord, let me faithfully trust you with ALL of me. No inhibitions. I will fulfill my destiny, purpose and see my dreams that YOU put in my heart come to fruition. Yes indeed!

© Photos by Design

The layers of protection I added to save myself, to cover my heart and mind, so as to not feel the pain or hurt, Lord you wash it away. I know You can fill me up. Allow me to walk in your strength, not my own. You are my Protector. The spiritual erosion must be clarified so freedom oozes from my pores

One thing I know for sure, God’s love never changes, it runs deep and wide. I am done with the disconnect between my faith and the way I actually live.

I am GROUNDED in FAITH, that is my desire.

Father, God, thank you for loving me so much, that I can run to you and you catch me from falling. You fill my cup to overflow so I can live with freedom. You are my Good Good Father! Amen

Review of Collateral Damage

This is a book review that I do through Revel books a division of Baker publishing group.

I enjoy Lynette Eason’s style because it is a nice light mystery.

Easy to follow. This book is about a character who was discharged from the army but was injured and no longer able to help in the military.

Without giving spoilers, I’ll give a general synopsis of what I like about Lynette’s writing, is that it is similar to what I would say easy to read.

I can imagine it as a TV show, one similar to Murder she Wrote. It’s Not intense, not terribly intertwined or hard to follow. It’s delightful and I definitely would recommend her books if you like to read light mysteries.

How will God get the glory through the pain?

Romans 8 reminds us we will suffer in life. We will go through periods when we groan, cry out, wonder what happened, and ask how catastrophic situations happen to Godly people.

The valleys in life can be dry. Barren. Elongated. We wonder, when will this problem or issue stop? When will the breakthrough happen?

The difficult experiences of life give us strength, if we allow God to shine HIS glory through it all. Each person has their own story, which helps us relate to others when the path of pain enters their life. We can help by praying for those who go through similar struggles we have endured and conquered. We encourage them, lift them up so they continue to hope while they wade through their personal situation. We persevere so to be an example of His strength in us, which shows His glory through our lives.

I’ve surely been there enough times, I should be a pro by now!

The death of my wonderful grandparents left huge voids in my life, they were like parents to me. Thirty years later, I still miss them so much, but appreciate the love and memories I have. God gave them to me as a special gift, which I will treasure forever.

My spiritual mom had a heart attack and died at 57 years old. She led me to the Lord. She loved me unconditionally and showed me how Jesus lives in us. She was a prayer warrior. A mighty woman. I didn’t know how I could continue to grow as a young adult, learning about life, parenting, and marriage without her wisdom.

My husband and I buried two stillborn babies. Surreal as it was, we had to have a casket and a plot for two children, this could put any parent in a crazy suit.

But God.

My willingness to be honest with God, as I’d respond in deep cries of pain that hurt from within my heart. Expressing to him how much I did NOT understand what and why these people in my life had died so young. Yet, I trust YOU, are my LORD. You are my God. You know. I don’t. I can only see a portion of what lies ahead. Help me grasp what you are teaching me in and through these losses.

I still had joy, love, and clarity of mind. Peace was mine, even though nothing felt peaceful. When life was a whirlwind, I always walked in faith. When my faith was small, God showed himself Big. Living in meekness is the best way to become strong live with a good temperance.

How? Do.I.Do.This? you ask.

The flesh cannot fulfill faith. We must have the Holy Spirit living within our mind and heart. The plans of the Holy Spirit, which benefit eternal life. It helps remind us to yield to Him, for strength, especially when we are weak. (1Corinthians 6:19.

We have to daily die to self to cooperate with Him. In time we see the reason and the plan which is always beneficial, and often helps others strengthen their walk with God, or come to Him for salvation.

Oh God, He is SO so good. He shows us his promises and gives us such patience, which we need to learn, ESPECIALLY when we walk through the darkest of valleys!

When our second baby died, I shook my head. I did not understand what God was doing, or allowing. I will be honest and say I told him it upset me when this happened……again.

Some years after we buried our little Mark, God had been doing a work within my husband, who was seeking God, asking many questions over the fifteen years we were married. God was opening his heart and mind towards Him, while he was watching me stay in faith as I fully trusted in Jesus, through the hardest times imaginable. During these times, my husband came to accept Jesus as his Savior, at thirty-eight years old.

Through the times we faced the death of our loved ones, and other factors throughout life, (jobs loss, surgeries etc.), I knew that God would get us through it all. He would guide us as a family. Yes, tears and sadness came in floods sometimes, but at the end of the day, the tears and heartache were captured in His arms. He had it all taken care of. Hope was always mine. My husband silently watched. Somehow, even though he never mentioned it, God was doing such a deep work in him. Once my husband surrendered his life to Christ, two weeks later a car accident took his life. Was this a triple whammy? I had buried two babies then my husband. Some would say so. But I knew that God was doing something profound. He did it in my husband, as he watched my faith grow throughout our marriage and all the many struggles we had. My husband came to know faith was real. He knew Jesus was Savior.

Healing was his. Healing was mine. Healing is yours too. It is through the suffering we must trust God to do a cleansing. A real work. Purifying us from within. We are justified in Christ. We are redeemed. God calls us from the depths of despair. My husband conformed to His calling, as did I.

To live as Christ is gain. Will you live redeemed? Or live in despair? The choice is yours. With small faith, you too can rise up and be filled with His hope and know that eternity in heaven will be your prize. Never give up hope. Read Romans 8, it’s a wonderful assurance of God’s glory and hope. God is alive, he is doing a work in you, my friend. Let him fill you up, even when it seems hard.

Hope for today

Where there is HOPE

It’s Christmas season, a time of giving, loving, gathering and sharing. But even in the midst of togetherness often there is loneliness. Strife amongst people in our circles.

Loneliness. During the happiest season of all?

How could that be?

Depression hits hard in the winter, and through this time of togetherness.

We can help people conquer this. By prayer. Through grace. With love. Being genuine and not fake.

Let’s dig in, as I write, share and prayerfully ask God to guide and help us to learn how to progress into the Hope that never fails.

Jesus is his name. We can live fully with Him.

No matter how hungry you may get, God always has a way to bring you food/manna. —> HOPE!
The trees may be barren for the winter, but the bright colors of cardinals offer a smile to our heart, and hope into our life. #live #hope #2020vision

About me…..

I’m an author, artist, photographer, and creator of things fun, bright and full of hope. I love God’s word. He’s perfecting me day by day, hour by hour and minute by minute, and dare I say, moment by moment.

Days can be hard, and fun, all at the same time. It’s finding the balance that peace reigns. Hope shines so God gets the glory.

Welcome to DL Designs

Photos By Design, is my photography and artwork, which is displayed in this blog and my PBD website. and my art store

Oiled by Design, is Young Living products, which I sell, and absolutely believe have changed my life for the good

Vida Designs are artwork of mine, (and other artists) created onto clothing and household items.

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