I prefer mountains to beaches and towns to cities, yet I live in the greater Los Angeles area.
I think God has a funny sense of humor.
I was born and raised in a rural farming community, where life was slower, and simpler too.
Then I moved to Southern California to attend Azusa Pacific University. And here, I happily stayed.
Today, I teach composition and literature. With an M.A. in English (emphasis in Rhetoric and Composition), I dedicate much of my life — both professionally and personally — to helping others develop their writing voice. I published my first e-book On Becoming a Writer in March 2013 because I believe in the writing process.
I love the world of words, where life and literature connect, but I’m most passionate about the Book with living words — the Word of God.
I grew up attending church. It’s sort of a requisite when your dad is the pastor. I knew all the Sunday School stories, but I didn’t know where any of them could be found in the Bible. Not until I was 17, when a summer camp speaker challenged us to read it for 20 minutes alone.
Twenty minutes alone with God, reading His Word, did more to change my life than 17 years of sermons. I’ve been studying the Bible ever since.
When I shared about The One Bible Study That Has Impacted My Life the Most, several friends said they wanted to join me, and Team 365 was born. Two years later, we’re still reading and learning and growing. In 2015, we’re following a Bible Reading Plan that’s one chapter a day, and you are always welcome to join us! You can download it for free here: Team 365 – Bible Reading Plan 2015.
I value the beauty of community, and I long to bring women together — to grow deeper in their relationship with God. So I founded Deeper Waters Ministry, a nonprofit organization, to serve women. You can click here to read about the sisterhood that’s gathering — we’ve saved a place, just for you.
I also have the joy of serving as the Editorial Coordinator at incourage.me, where some fabulous women kick off their shoes for some genuine down-to-earth chats, and I’m a contributing writer for the amazing communities at Allume and Raising Generations Today.
I love being with women, and leading Bible studies, and coming alongside writers. But I still cherish those moments when I can be one-on-one with a friend. To hear her story. To understand her heart. And to lean in close and whisper, “Me too.” Because even though our circumstances may be different, our souls are the same. We are longing for wholeness. And somewhere along life’s path, we learned that true wholeness only comes from the Maker of our souls.
So as often as I can, I like to find my way back to this quiet space, where I write from my heart to yours. I named this blog Embracing Grace & Truth because these are two primary values that guide my everyday choices.
In everything I do, I want my thoughts, words, and deeds to be prayerfully submitted to the grace and truth of Jesus Christ.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. ~ John 1:14
As followers of Christ, we are pilgrims on this earth, journeying together to become more like Jesus, full of grace and truth.
We are born broken, and we tend to fall to one side or the other. We tend to be natural Grace Givers, or we tend to be natural Truth Tellers. Only Jesus was the fullness of both, which is why we are so much in need of Jesus.
I am a Truth Teller. I think many writers are. It’s one of the main reasons we write. The truth of something is so important to us that we feel compelled to put what we believe in black and white.
But I’ve been on a journey of growing in grace too. So when I’m writing or speaking about the life of faith or the gift of motherhood or the craft of writing, I believe everything I write and speak should be the truth spoken with grace (Ephesians 4:15).
So I named my blog Embracing Grace & Truth because my heart’s desire is to embrace Jesus Christ and reflect His grace and truth in all that I think, say, and do.
When I’m embracing grace and truth, I’m embracing Jesus Christ. And I’ve dedicated my words to inviting others to embrace Jesus Christ too.
I’d love to meet you and hear your story. You are always welcome to leave a comment or send an email to:
denise (at) denisejhughes (dot) come
My blog is built on the Genesis Framework for WordPress. My site is hosted by Fistbump Media.
Mindy from Simply Designs designed my website. I highly recommend her expertise and services.
The photo for this About page was taken by Chris Salazar Photography.
*The only reason I have my middle initial in my domain is because “denisehughes”– without the J– was already taken.
This is my personal blog. All opinions expressed here are mine and do not represent any other organization.
I am not an affiliate with any programs; thus, I do not receive any kind of credit or reimbursement for mentioning books or products or services. Whenever I refer to a book or a product or a service, it’s simply because I love it.
Updated: January 1, 2015