Jessica Satterfield: Made Beautiful by Pain
Meet Jessica Satterfield, a 28 year old wife and mother of two. She radiates a sweetness that invites you to come closer.
Her husband and I were college classmates years ago, and I still remember when he first told me about this special girl he had met. Once I met her for myself, I easily saw what drew him to her.
She’s the real deal. Loves Jesus through and through. And emanates such beauty…a beauty that runs much deeper than a pretty face and great hair (though she has those, too 🙂 ). It’s what Stasi Eldredge calls a “soulish beauty.”
I knew there was a story behind this beauty.
Here, in her own words, Jessica shares a glimpse of that story.
Some nights when the fighting was too loud for me to sleep, a little bird would chirp outside my window. In the middle of the night. In the dead of winter. And I always knew it was Him.
Even as a little girl, I knew Him to be safe. He was safe in the midst of the chaos I grew up in. I came to know Him when I was only five. Although I only saw tiny glimpses of Him, I knew He would always be enough.
I was diagnosed with a heart disease when I was in high school. I had many doctor’s visits, heart surgeries, and just plain hard days. But even in my physical weakness, I found Him to be strong. I could rest in Him when my body was so tired. I am still finding Him to be faithful in the day to day of living with this disease.
But it wasn’t until that one, lonely pink line showed up month after month. All of my friends were posting pictures of swollen bellies. It seemed like every time I checked the mail, I was invited to, yet another, baby shower. I could not escape the longing to be a mother. It would find me in the isles of the grocery store, in the middle of a commercial, or especially, in the silence of the night.
That’s when I really found Him. In the hard of infertility, He met me there. He met me in the brokenness of my story, in the empty parts of my heart, and the barrenness of my womb. I found Him there, in the hardest days of my life. He saw me. And after hormones of every kind, a year of infertility treatments, and accepting I would never carry biological children, I realized just as when I was a little girl, He would always be enough.
Beauty began to form from my ashes, not only in my heart, but in our home. Little feet pitter-patter throughout my house now. And two sweet, brown babies call me, “Mommy.” I look into their precious faces and see a very faithful Father. He has written beauty over their sweet lives, and our broken story.
Being their mama is the greatest honor of my life, but loving children that come from hard places has brought me to a new place of needing Him. My days are filled with therapy sessions, feeding tubes, changing diapers, cleaning up messes, and kissing boo-boos. I love every second. But some days I find myself in the corner of my closet eating a Reese’s (can I get an amen?), in the dark and quiet. The day to day hard, propels me to run to Him.
He, still, is always enough, and always safe. We meet every night on my white couch. He gets all of me in those precious moments. The hard from that day fades away when I’m able to look into His face. Some days when the hard seems too much, I crawl in His lap and let Him love on me. Some days when I am parched, I dive deep into His Word for wisdom. But every day, He is there. Seeing me, loving me, meeting with me.
The hard parts of my story have never been my favorite to live through. It’s even painful, at times, to remember them. But those nights of no sleep as a little girl, the heart surgeries, every negative pregnancy test, and the days when two under two is exhausting, are the most precious. Because it has been in the hard of my life, that I have found Him to be the most real, present, and beautiful.
Without these times, I wouldn’t know what His lap feels like. I wouldn’t know the sound of His heartbeat. I wouldn’t know Him to be enough or safe. I wouldn’t trade any of the hard for what I have since found in Him.
Sometimes in our immature thinking, we believe if enough “hard” has already happened, then the rest of our life will be easy. This isn’t true when we follow Jesus. In fact, He tells us to expect hard. It’s in the middle of life storms that we can find Him to be so incredibly good. We must only lean into Him and allow Him to be. And when we do, the broken parts of our stories, become the most beautiful.
“Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her.”
Beloved, the beauty upon Jessica’s life is telling a Kingdom story…
A story of ashes turned to beauty (Isaiah 61:3) and pain that has yielded refinement. Rather than running away from God in her pain, she has kept running to Him, inviting Him into it.
Her story is broader, deeper, and harder than can be captured in this one excerpt. But let me tell you, the pain has been real. If anyone had a reason to become embittered and cynical, it was Jessica. From her earliest days, she had reasons to accuse God. But she chose the way far less traveled – the way of yieldedness. The way of pliability in the Potter’s hands.
As I’ve meditated on her story, the image I keep seeing in my mind is that of a wine-press. An ancient wine-press consisted of two vats: the first was a higher receptacle into which grapes were thrown and then crushed and bruised. Here great pressure was exerted upon the fruit in order to free its juice. The second receptacle received the juice produced by the first vat’s pressure.
The wine-press facilitated a process that was both crushing and fruitful. It involved intense pressure, but the pressure had a purpose: it released the fruit’s precious contents. The crushing that seemed to be destroying the fruit was actually transforming the fruit into something much more valuable. Wine costs a lot more than grapes. And no wonder. Its value, its taste, its richness, are the result of an extensive process. Fine wines aren’t cheap because they aren’t easily produced.
The beauty emanating from Jessica’s life has come from her time in the wine-press. Her yieldedness during seasons of crushing has begun to release the precious contents the Father placed inside of her long ago.
There’s an invitation in this for us, Friends. Oh, that we would take Him up on it! That we would stop using pain as an excuse to run from Him but rather, as a reason to crawl into His lap. That we would stop agreeing with lies about His heart and instead, open ourselves to life as sons and daughters. That we would stop giving way to cynicism and rather, allow Him to restore our innocence.
He’s there in your pain, Beloved… Just as He’s been there in Jessica’s. And He’s making all things new.
Thank you, Jessica, for yielding to His process –
and for offering the world new wine!
You can read more about Jessica’s journey with the Lord at
I’ve been reminded of this song as I’ve thought about Jessica’s story, and I pray that it ministers to you. It’s a gentle, prophetic declaration that our Father is restoring us as we press into His presence. There’s nothing that has been stolen from us that God can’t restore!