Let's talk. I’m Holly Stratton,

and I’m so grateful you’re here. A lover of people, my passion is to study and share the truth of God's Word that sets us free. Not free from the inevitable pain of life, but free from self and the destructive pursuits that flow from a seemingly unquenchable thirst for satisfaction. LifeHurts is a place to strengthen your mind and steady your heart with the hope of the gospel, and to learn more of Christ who delights in satisfying us with Himself. 

About me…

I’ve been married 31 years to my high school sweetheart whom I chased for 9 years. For being such a brilliant accountant, it took him forever to calculate the risk of marrying a liability. I finally smartened up and gave him an ultimatum: Take me or leave me. I’m not sure if that lit his fire or if it was slamming him against the wall and kissing the living daylights out of him; but either way, he asked and I said yes. Then being the second-guesser that I am, I promptly cried the entire engagement for fear I was making a mistake. Mr. Risk Adverse remained unshaken in his confidence throughout the ordeal, agreeing with my assessment that the heat of romance was making me woefully irrational. Fortunately sanity overruled, and six months later I married the man who still drives me wild enough to be deemed crazy. 

Seven years into our marriage, a painful struggle with infertility culminated in our experiencing the monumental joy of adoption. A beloved son was placed in our arms, and seven years later a beautiful daughter joined our embrace. God knew we needed each other, and we praise Him for sovereignly binding us together. There are no shared gene pools in this family, so we’re kind of like a wild water fun park, replete with a slush gush, summit plummet, and two lazy rivers. Some days I want to throw in the towel and pull the plug on the entire attraction, and other days I can't soak in enough of the adventure. 

We’ve recently moved to Michigan where we’re tackling urban life in a highrise apartment located smack dab in the heart of Detroit. We're continually told that we're certifiably insane, but never by young people. They just think we're majorly cool 19th-century hipsters. We love our ministry, we love our church, and we love this fascinating city of revitalization. It's such a glorious picture of the work of grace that Christ is doing to restore broken lives, including our own.  

I recently wrote a Facebook post that offers a slice of my life, and I'll let it speak my final words of introduction:

You're not asking for it, but here's some advice from a woman a half-a-century old who has been a pastor's wife, a college president's wife, a dean's wife, a professor's wife, an accountant's wife, an impoverished grad student's wife, and a wife to nobody at all. Life sure is a lot more simple when you forget the entire role thing and just concentrate on loving God and others. Privileges and problems accompany every calling in life, and thinking otherwise does nothing more than foster both prideful entitlement and petty martyrdom. Whether wife of a pastor, or a president, or a pauper, I was the exact same flawed woman. A flawed woman waging war on her sin and her flesh amidst steady sovereign sanctification, falling before the throne of grace with the exact same rights and privileges of EVERY redeemed child of God, married or not.