Never Ever Be the Same by Kathy Collard Miller

Posted by on Mar 13, 2015 | 5 comments

Never Ever Be the Same by Kathy Collard Miller

My guest this week is Kathy Collard Miller, author of Never Ever Be the Same, a Christian Living non-fiction book about breaking free from the sinful patterns of your past. Don’t forget to check out the giveaway at the bottom! 




Fabulous Fridays

Welcome Kathy! You have published a lot of books, some with your husband and many on your own. Tell us something about how you started writing.

Even as a child, I wanted to be a writer—I just didn’t know what it really was or how to get to do it! But I loved sitting at my desk and touching paper—of course, that was before I even used a typewriter or computer. So years later after God delivered me from being a child abuser, I learned at a community class how to write a query letter. I sent such a letter in 1978 to a magazine I subscribed to—offering my idea of writing my story. They said they wanted to consider it and then they bought it! Then I went to a writer’s conference and three years later in 1984 my first book was published, again about my story!


Tell us something about Never Ever Be the Same.Never Ever Be the Same

My husband and I share what we’ve learned during six years of developing principles that have, with God’s empowering, helped us to respond to life’s challenges with more love, grace, and godliness. We’re sure not perfect and never will be, but we can more effectively know why we are being tempted and how to trust God instead.


How would you like Never Ever Be the Same to inspire your readers?

We believe that the principles, examples, and instruction that we share can give a reader the insights into why they are being tempted in a certain way. We begin to believe lies in childhood that grow into ways that protect us from being wounded or hurt (emotionally and physically). And we wrap those sinful reactions in other lies like, “It’s his/her fault, etc.” In our book, we help the reader identify their true motives and how they aren’t including God in their thinking and reactions. And we give hope for making real, positive changes in their lives.


Often we desire to teach a lesson in and through our writing, but we as writers also learn something. What was one thing you learned while writing Never Ever Be the Same?

As we endeavored to communicate in writing what we’d learned and been able to apply to our own lives, we struggled to communicate principles that deal so delicately with heart motives. We can give information, instruction and examples, but only the Holy Spirit can truly change a heart. So we learned more about calling upon the Holy Spirit to empower us in our writing and then trust Him with whatever results He brings about in readers’ lives. And that’s the whole theme of our book: learning to trust God more rather than trying to control and manipulate.


You also have quite a busy speaking ministry. Tell us something about it.

I gave my first presentation in 1980 never knowing God’s plan for a speaking ministry. Now I’ve spoken in 31 states and 8 foreign countries. Most recently, Larry and I traveled to China where I spoke to 86 missionary women. Larry and I are hoping to return to Greece for the third time to speak again on marriage, parenting and spiritual growth, plus give individual and couple counseling. It’s been quite an adventure over these 30 plus years.


How do you keep a sense of order and peace in your life and home with such a demanding schedule?

When my children were young, I wrote during their nap times and then while they were in school. I really did try to limit my desk time so that their needs were met. Now we have an empty nest, Larry is retired, and I can easily be at my desk for many hours. The challenge now is sharing a home office with Larry. I never knew how much he liked to talk until we shared side by side desks. And I never knew how much I depended upon complete quiet to work! Thankfully, he’s such a sweetheart that I can tell him, “Honey, I have to concentrate now!” And he’ll say, “OK, I’ll be quiet…for awhile.” (Laughing)


What would you most like to accomplish that you have not done yet?

 Finish the novel that I started. But I keep getting too many fabulous non-fiction ideas!


Book blurb:

Never Ever Be the Same will empower you to look honestly at your motives and break free from the lies that fuel your sinful patterns. We try to figure out why we fail in our words and reactions and even pray for God’s help; but before we know it, we’ve succumbed again to distrusting God and taking it out on other people.

But in Never Ever Be the Same, with its biblical principles, insightful stories, and helpful instruction, you will discover how to unearth the underlying causes of your sin and learn to trust God more for an inner transformation. This book also provides individual and group discussion questions.


Would you share the first three pages of Never Ever Be the Same with us?

Section I

The Cistern


There are reasons for what we do. They are reasons, not excuses. God wants to make a difference in our lives by unearthing the underlying causes. In this section, we’re going to identify how and why we respond in ungodly ways. A simple model goes a long way in explaining the un-identified causes at the root of our reactions. That model is:

The Wound >>>creates a Message of wrong Beliefs and distorted Images>>>resulting in a Vow>>>creating a Sinful Strategy>>>and when the Strategy is threatened, we become Hooked.

In this model, Hooking is both the beginning of the cycle and the end. It’s similar to: which comes first—the chicken or the egg? When we’re Hooked, we respond in an ungodly manner which reminds us of the wounds which we are determined to cover up.

The elements of the model aren’t always apparent in every experience and they don’t always happen in this order. But it’s a helpful guide for seeing why and how we react the way we do.

After we identify the elements of this model in our lives, we will travel into Section II, The Living Spring, which provides redemption and hope: Repentance, Surrender, and the Process of Growth. You might be tempted to conclude that if repentance and surrender are the desired results, why not just skip this section and go immediately to the next? Doing that short-circuits the possibility of true heart change. We must address the underlying foundation that gave birth to distrust of God. For us to do that, each chapter builds upon the previous one.

Our passion is to help you see how you have formulated the sinful strategies so that you can drink from God’s Living Spring.

Chapter 1

Why Do I Do What I Do?


The gospel is a vital gift from God not only for our salvation but also to enable us to deal with the ongoing activity of sin in our lives. So we still need the gospel every day.

—Jerry Bridges


Only those who acknowledge that they are thirsty ever drink from the Spring of Living Water.

—Robert W. Kellemen, Ph.D.


I, Larry, was taking a walk with Kathy recently and she asked me, “Honey, remember how you mentioned that you rarely prayed before a potentially dangerous situation that you faced as a police officer. Why do you think you didn’t pray?”

I answered, “Well, I would pray for the safety of other officers but frankly I never gave a thought about praying for myself. I was so confident in my training and decision making skills that I believed I was prepared for anything.”

“That seems a little presumptuous. Could your prayerlessness be tied to your first acting role?”

I immediately flashed back to one of the most humiliating times of my life. As a thirteen-year-old, I had a role in the school play. I can still picture entering from stage left. As I approached my mark and looked at the entire student body, my mind went blank. I could not speak! My heart raced. I forgot my lines. I sensed the stage prompter calling out my lines but the only thing I heard was the swoosh of my wildly pounding heart. I stood there mute.

This completely disrupted the play. The other actors came out of character, turned, and stared at me. The silence felt terrifying. It felt like I stood naked before all my peers. In a feeble attempt to recapture any microscopic shred of my dignity, I improvised some lines and the other actors continued as I exited stage right. I have no other memories of my acting debut. I didn’t want any others.

I clearly remember my heart’s conclusion: “I am worthless, weak, and vulnerable. I vow to never be out of control again. I will always be prepared.” I never wanted to feel that pain again, and that included any emotion. But those pesky feelings which kept erupting in my heart seemed soft, weak, and way too risky because I couldn’t control them. There was no room for feelings, only my determined efforts to excel, perform, and look good in order to feel safe. So, I tilled the soil of my heart, packed feelings down, and rolled them smooth. As the country song laments, “…I stomped that sucker flat.”

I turned to Kathy and said, “That is a good question. I was presumptuous because I was terrified. There was no room for God in those crisis situations. My training, skill, and mastery over my job just took charge. I spent my entire life honing that strategy of depending upon myself to prevent any weakness from being exposed.”

We continued chatting and the puzzle pieces fell into place. I realized that anything that threatened my image must be handled by the only one I really trusted: me! I left God out of the equation so that I could maintain control. Of course I would gladly pray for the protection of my peers. That cost me nothing. It didn’t make me look weak—only them!

As we walked, I felt a sense of repentance that my prayerlessness was rooted in a rebellious spirit that instinctively rejected anything that a sovereign God might place in my path. I said, “Oh honey, I am a wicked man. Good thing I am redeemed!”

I, Kathy, had signed up to take refreshments to our adult Sunday school class knowing I would be out of town the week before. But I would return on Saturday so I was available. That Saturday I listened to the messages on our voice mail. Among them were two messages from Cherie who was in charge of refreshments. The first message said, “Kathy, you are bringing refreshments this coming Sunday to class. Let me know that you can still do that.” In the second message, Cherie said, “Kathy, I haven’t heard from you so I’m assuming you can’t bring refreshments. I’ll get someone else to do it.”

As soon as I heard the second message, my anger went sky high as I yelled at Larry, “How dare she think I would be stupid enough to sign up for something I couldn’t do. I think I’ll just bring snacks anyway to show her that I keep my promises!”

Larry looked at me as if I were a mad woman. “Kathy, it’s no big deal. I don’t see why this bothers you so much.”

“You’ve got to be kidding me. Of course, it bothers me; it means she thinks I don’t keep my promises; that I’m a liar and stupid.” I just kept sputtering the same thing as if it made sense. I was too upset to examine my motives. I just knew there was something really dangerous going on. But as a few days passed, I began to think more clearly about the incident. “Why, indeed, am I so bothered?” I didn’t know.

It wasn’t until over a decade later that I discovered the underlying reason. Through examining the principles you’ll learn in this book, I learned that my reaction of anger was a protective device to prevent me from being exposed as a liar, undependable, and stupid. Where did this come from?

When I was in third grade, I was Mrs. Leighton’s “teacher’s pet.” Everyone knew that Mrs. Leighton favored me and it was like drinking living water for my child’s thirsty soul. Mrs. Leighton, for some reason, had chosen me as important and worthy of her special approval.

On one particular day, I said something hurtful to someone in class that several students heard. I don’t remember what I said, but it was so bad that one of the students called Mrs. Leighton over and told her what I’d said. Mrs. Leighton looked at me with concern and asked, “Kathy, did you say that?”

The potential for possibly destroying what I enjoyed was being threatened. I felt like I was in a vise. The students knew the truth. I knew the truth. All eyes were on me.

And I chose to protect what seemed like living water. I lied. “No, Mrs. Leighton, I didn’t say that.”

Mrs. Leighton smiled her approval—she even looked triumphant—and turned away. In that moment I concluded I was a liar and I felt ashamed. Looking back now, I made an unconscious vow: “No one must ever know that I am a liar.” I don’t remember thinking those words, but the result I now see is undeniable. I became dependable.

My “strategy” became dependability. “If I’m dependable, no one will know the horrible truth that I’m a liar. Dependability is the opposite of lying. If you lie, you don’t keep your promises and you aren’t dependable. But if you are dependable, no one can call you a liar!” Over many years, I honed the skill of dependability. My teachers described me in every report card with the affirming words, “Kathy is very dependable and conscientious.” I made sure no one could ever accuse me of lying.

Over the years, I failed at times in being dependable. In those moments, anger reared its ugly head because anger takes the focus off of me and points the finger elsewhere. “Look at what Cherie did to me,” I screamed that day. “Don’t look at the possibility that I’m a liar, look at her. She isn’t very smart not to believe the sign up sheet.” I had a knee jerk reaction that I’d made many times over the years and later wondered, “Why do things like that bother me so much?”

Can you relate to either of our examples? Or maybe you have your own ungodly reactions and afterward wonder, “Why did I react that way? I don’t want to act in that ungodly way. I even ask God for help. I want to be holy as God desires for me. But I keep doing what I don’t want to do.”


Kathy Collard MillerAbout the author: 

Kathy Collard Miller and Larry Miller are speakers and authors. They have been married 44 years and Larry is a retired police lieutenant. The Millers live in Southern California, and have two grown children and one grandson. Visit them at Kathy blogs at



How can readers find you on the Internet?


Facebook Author Page: Kathy Collard Miller Author

Pinterest: Kathy Miller

Google+: Kathy Collard Miller

Goodreads: Kathy Collard Miller

Twitter: @KathyCMiller

Never Ever Be the Same is available at your local Christian bookstore (or it can be ordered there). And in both print and digital versions at:



Barnes and Noble:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you, Norma, for featuring our book. I’m excited to see who wins the copy of the book.

    • You are so welcome, Kathy!

  2. This sounds like an interesting book. Kathy, I appreciate your candor as I read through your sample pages. Norma, thank you for sharing Kathy with us.

    • You are welcome, Nan! Thanks for stopping by!

    • Thanks, Nan, for letting me know you were intrigued by those pages. God bless you!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Did you enjoy this?

If so, please help spread the happiness! Share this post with your friends!

%d bloggers like this: