Hold That Thought: Sorting Through the Voices in Our Heads, By Gem Fadling
Hold That Thought
  • Length: 192 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.5 in
  • Published: September 20, 2022
  • Imprint: IVP Formatio
  • Item Code: 3169
  • ISBN: 9780830831692

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"You're not good enough."

"You need to try harder."

"Everything's fine!"

These are the sorts of voices that we all have in our heads, and they often push us to act in ways that are both unhelpful and unsustainable. How do we quiet these narratives? More importantly, amid the chatter, how do we hear the voice of God?

Gem Fadling helps us identify the competing voices and shows how they hinder our personal transformation. Drawing on years of spiritual direction and leadership at Unhurried Living, she shares her wisdom of how we make sense of inner voices and settle down enough to find our true voice.

Using the discussion guide in the back of the book, groups can discuss the competing voices that they experience within their own souls and learn to notice, discern, and respond to the movement of God in their lives. When we find our true voice, we can let go of the striving and people-pleasing and rest in the presence of God and his plan for our lives.

"In Hold That Thought, Gem Fadling's voice is both bright and grounding, able to meet readers where we are and also kind enough not to leave us there for long. Through her own stories and the stories of others, Gem submits a helpful and accessible guide to discerning between the competing internal voices we all contend with, always circling back to the wisdom of our true voice and the present nearness of God."

Emily P. Freeman, author of The Next Right Thing

"Hold That Thought is a wonderfully practical guide to move from self-contempt into curiosity and compassion. Gem Fadling is both relatable and refreshing—a wise and kind voice who will help you better hear the Voice of Love in your life. Hold That Thought is theologically rich, accessible, and psychologically astute. I'm so grateful to have this book as a resource for my clients and community!"

K.J. Ramsey, licensed professional counselor and author of The Lord Is My Courage

"Hold That Thought is a gem of a book that intertwines teachable moments through everyday personalities who seek God's directives on their spiritual journeys. Within these personal stories, Gem integrates a theological foundation and personal testimonies that encourage readers to live a transformative life steeped in embracing God's agape love. From such a foundation, individuals are empowered to take control of their voices and speak God's truth over their life; they are equipped to experience inner healing, godly success, and freedom in Christ. This is a must-read for those seeking to drink deeper!"

Barbara L. Peacock, author of Soul Care in African American Practice and founder of Barbara L. Peacock Ministries

"I often hear people ask who the desert fathers and mothers, the abbas and ammas, are today. While they are few and far between, I am delighted to suggest Gem Fadling is one. As a spiritual mother, she guides readers skillfully and deeply into the inner landscape of the soul. Hold That Thought is the kind of resource I wish I'd had for myself twenty years ago. So, I adjure you: Be brave. Open these pages and confront your inner voices of shame, pain, and isolation. They will begin as enemies but end as friends on the holy journey toward wholeness."

Tara M. Owens, spiritual director and executive director of Anam Cara Ministries, author of Embracing the Body

"Desires and longing are the lifeblood of a vital, joyous, and dynamic life, a life worth living. For too long desires and longing never hit my agenda, and burnout was the result. Gem writes in Hold That Thought, 'We must get in touch with our truest longings and our deepest desires. These are God-given and are the key to becoming more authentically us, inwardly and outwardly.' Spirit uses desires and longing as an invitation for living our most expansive and heart-centered lives. The unsettled heart cannot afford to be ignored; it offers us the keys to the kingdom life where the heart arouses us in wonder, curiosity, and ultimately, freedom."

Juanita C. Rasmus, spiritual director and author of Learning to Be

"You've heard the voices that make you believe that if you want to get anywhere in life, you need to hustle more and push harder. This book helps you identify those debilitating voices and untangle them from your heart and mind. Gem Fadling is a wise and trustworthy guide for any of us who have listened too long to the inner voices that make us strive and try harder. Read this book and find your own true voice in the process."

Jennifer Dukes Lee, author of Growing Slow and It's All Under Control

"Starting from her own prayer for needed change, Gem Fadling takes on the voices of achievement, control, and angst to show us where these voices come from and then how to participate in God's life. Gracious, generous, and practical, Hold That Thought walks us through discernment with God so we can live the abundant life Jesus promises. If you're feeling stuck, or transformation feels too opaque, Hold That Thought is a kind companion."

Ashley Hales, author of A Spacious Life and Finding Holy in the Suburbs

"If you are ready to understand why you think the way you do and want godly, practical ways to shift unhelpful thoughts, this is the book for you. Gem Fadling normalizes the common human struggle through sharing from her personal story and the stories of others. She gives permission to address the deep thoughts in our minds that are not helpful. The questions throughout the pages will help reshape the thoughts that are no longer serving you well. As a pastor, I will be recommending this book to a lot of people. It is worth picking up and journeying through no matter where you find yourself in life's journey."

Diana Shiflett, pastor and author of Spiritual Practices in Community


1. You Are More Than Your Thoughts
2. Finding Your Voice
3. From Stressed Achiever to Living with Intention
4. From Positive Thinker to Growing in Hope
5. From Inner Critic to Gaining Fresh Perspective
6. From Anxious Controller to Enjoying Life's Seasons
7. From Complaining Victim to Walking in Freedom
8. From Passive Spectator to Inspiring Through Presence
9. From Unsettled Heart to Being at Home
10. Engaging God's Voice

Appendix A. A Refreshed Foundation
Appendix B. Using Notice, Discern, Respond
Small Group Guide


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Gem Fadling

Gem Fadling, CLC, is a founding partner of Unhurried Living, Inc., a non-profit that trains people to rest deeper, live fuller, and lead better. She is a certified life coach and a trained spiritual director who coaches women at the intersection of spiritual leadership and soul care. Gem is the host of the I Can Do That! Podcast and the coauthor of What Does Your Soul Love?: Eight Questions That Reveal God’s Work in You.