family, featured, from the wife

Dear Dolly

In early March 2020, Dolly Parton shared her desire to be on the cover of Playboy magazine again with “60 Minutes Australia.” This time for her 75th birthday.

I read the brief article and immediately my heart sank. Once again, I see celebrities loosing sight of the impact and choices of continuing to embrace this sexualized culture. My desire was to send the letter below directly to Dolly or someone within her circle of people. However, I have been unsuccessful in getting the email to go through. So I am moving to another platform in hopes of getting this to her and praying for her consideration.


Dear Dolly,

My name is Lyschel and I am a mom to three beautiful daughters, a wife, friend and ministry leader in East Tennessee. I’m writing you because of the recent news about your 75th birthday and your desire to be on the cover of Playboy again.

Can I be honest with you? Woman to woman? Strong woman to strong woman?  This news grieved me so much. As you know, you are OUR celebrity in East Tennessee . OUR person who changes the world for good and uses her platform for spreading love and kindness. You were the first celebrity my girls knew of and recognized. You were known as the nice lady that mailed us books each month through Imagination Library. My daughters were convinced you lived at Dollywood and were disappointed when we did not see you on our visits.  You are a role model for them in the biggest and smallest of ways.

We watched the entire telethon that you hosted after the fires destroyed The Smokey Mountains in 2016, giving us an opportunity to explain to our girls how you use your position as a celebrity to bring life back into a devastated community. We watched your story through the movie Coat of Many Colors so many times. It’s safe to say you are an important lady in our home.

(Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)


In addition to being a mom, I love on women who have faced sexual betrayal in their own stories by their husbands through infidelity, pornography and addiction. I cannot listen to your song “Jolene” without crying. The pain in that song is real and deep. You get it. You understand the betrayal and uncertainty of it. You also know what it feels like to ask the sexualized culture around you to back off for the sake of your marriage. 

Through watching various documentaries about you, I learned that “Jolene” was a real moment for you in your own marriage. I also watched as you began to step out and speak up for women in your various roles such as the one you played in 9 to 5 in 1980, refusing to allow the exploitation of women in the workforce and taking a stand against chauvinism.

Your climb to stardom had to come with so much cost, and your reach for more impact has, no doubt, been honorable.

When I asked a group of female friends what words describe Dolly Parton, I heard: “sassy,” “unstoppable,” “a fighter,” “generous,” “kind,” “joyful,” “truthful,” “an encourager” and “a Joan of Arc of her time.”

So my plea today is please do not become betrayal material for our culture. Please do not become sexual content for men, women and children. Please do not add to the sexualization of our culture and the brokenness of this world when it comes to honoring people for who they are, not for what they look like. 

An article published by the American College of Pediatricians in 2016 discussed the impact of pornography on children and families as this: “Children suffer many negative effects due to modern society’s exposure to and acceptance of pornography. These negative effects include mental disturbance and unrest for the young school age child, including acting out and violent behavior. Because of its harmfulness to children, pornography must never be used as a tool to teach children human sexuality. For older adolescents and young adults, pornography teaches a false narrative regarding human sexuality and how men and women form healthy sexual relationships. This makes it more difficult for young men and women to form authentic, stable relationships. For parents, pornography is divisive resulting in a decreased quality of marriage and increasing the likelihood of divorce and separation which has been well documented to be harmful to children. “

So while it might seem like a punch in the face for the age police to model for the cover of a pornographic magazine at age 75, the implications far outweigh the statement made to the world and your 75 year old self.

I have sat with hundreds of women who are shattered by the impact of pornography and infidelity in their marriage. I have heard of children addicted to material as early as 11 years old because their parents were using the material themselves and they discovered it on their devices or in their home. I have experienced the emotional disconnect and divisiveness of divorce because of sexual addiction. I have prayed with adult daughters of men who were unable to fully love them as God designed because their hearts and minds were not able to emotionally connect with other women without lusting after them, so they avoided relationship with their daughters all together. These women’s lives are left with gaping holes because of emotional abandonment.

So I am speaking up and asking you, please don’t be a part of this epidemic that is destroying our children and families. Your voice and platform is so much more powerful and meaningful than the one you might hold for a minute on the cover of Playboy.

I know that your other platforms speak directly against the things that porn accomplishes. You are a representation of love and hope for so many women and children. Please don’t waver from this incredible platform of female empowerment and return us back to 1978.

Love your E TN fan,

Lyschel Burket 

holidays, Hope Redefined, recovery, the everyday

Emmanuel, God With Us

Even though in my mind, I’ve placed Him in a stinky manger, far off and in another time, He calls himself Emmanuel. God with us. These very words can also be heard often throughout the season in a Christmas song that plays throughout your shopping day, church and possibly your own playlist while you are at home.

What does it really mean, though? What does it mean to see Emmanuel in a story riddled by betrayal during a season that is supposed to be joyful, bright and filled with happiness? I sat quietly in my office for a moment as I thought about this question for myself and for so many others around me.

He is with us when we can’t bring ourselves to send the Christmas card with the “family” photo because it feels like a lie, or maybe it shows our new reality of divorce or separation.

He is with us when we try to decorate the Christmas tree with our kids and find it near impossible as we pull out ornaments that overwhelm us with memories of a past that appeared to be one thing, but was actually something else.

He is with us when we are traveling to extended family and know there won’t be a soul there who gets us. Instead, there will be those who stand back in judgement and lay expectations on us to show up for the sake of the season.

He is with us when we are in a store and experience a trigger that is so massive it backs us up in a corner and holds us there until we can catch our breath again.

He is with us as we lay in bed and look at our husband’s face in the dark, wondering what is going on “over there.”

He is with us when we need that frightened little girl inside of us to be held.

He is with us as we navigate so many of the unknowns. He sees the brave face and the secret tears.

He is with us when we call our adult children and ask about their holiday plans. Praying they include us, and also wrestling with the possibility of being in the same space with our ex spouse.

He is with us as we search the internet for THE thing that will make the bleeding of our soul stop.

He is with us when we are pouring over scripture looking for answers and a glimpse of hope.

He is with us when we pause for a moment and do something that is caring for ourselves and refreshing for our soul.

He is with us when we stand in church and sing from a depth in our soul that can only hold a fraction of His power.

Can I be honest? I lose sight and think Jesus is twirling through the holiday season like a Nutcracker character, far removed from the grief and hurt that can wrap itself around us this time of year. The truth of the matter is, He sits in the middle of the hard and downright impossible with each of us.

So once again I will stand in awe this Christmas season of all that He has done for us. I will remember that He isn’t back in the manger, far off, fragile, small and dependent on His parents. He is still the Savior who died and rose again. The One who sent the Holy Spirit to live within us and be Emmanuel, God with us. And, He is smiling when we see His presence and ask for more of Him. 

Lord, your word is stuffed with promises that we need to be reminded of over and over. Help us to see your presence as we attempt to stay present. Help us to sense your affections toward us as we try to navigate a season that can feel so conflicting. Help us to find our strength in Your joy over us. Father, we know that you ask for our weakness so that we can be made strong again. Help us to surrender the things we are holding on to and receive your strength for this day and this season. In Jesus Name, Amen. 

About Us, Hope Redefined, how to help with porn addiction, recovery, Uncategorized

More Than A Piece Of Paper

This past month, I had the honor of receiving my certification from an organization that is committed to training and equipping helping professionals understand betrayal trauma and the impact of sexual addiction. The organization is called APSATS (Association of Partners of Sex Addiction Trauma Specialist). This certification makes me a Certified Partner Coach. Crazy job title to be excited over, right?  

I feel such a pressing on my heart to share why this is such a big deal, not only for me but for the women around me.

The day I received the certificate, I posted on social media my gratitude and excitement about getting to this point. What I didn’t mention was that when I sat back down in the back of the room and tried to contain my excitement, I heard this still small voice say, “Open the folder, Lyschel, and sit with this for a moment.” I have a tendency to run through life and quickly move from one thing to the next – physically, mentally and emotionally. The Lord knows this about me.  

I immediately opened the green folder containing my certificate and I just sat with it for a moment. Within a few seconds, the tears began to fall as I felt the Spirit remind me of all that happened prior to this moment. All of the mountains that were conquered, overcome or walked around to get to this moment.

The first thing that came to mind was my husband. The grief of his addiction is still there. It’s still something I ache over and the reality of what it has stolen from him, me and us. I hate that this is part of his story, and as a result, a part of mine. But man, we have weathered some storms – more like a tsunami quickly followed by a tornado. Some of these storms have been faced together and others I went through all on my own, with God by my side. Every single one of those storms contributed to the moment I was having in the back of this meeting room, looking at this simple piece of paper.

Second, I thought of my children. They have sacrificed for their mom to be able to walk in this calling. There were missed dinners and basketball games, along with a few field trips here and there. While I can wrestle with guilt over missing moments, I also think about the home life they are receiving because of the healing and investment I have made in myself to grow. It’s like they are getting to start from a level up.

Next, my thoughts and gratitude quickly moved to the women who have sat with me over the last seven years. Beautiful faces on the computer in our online groups and hugs received in our face to face groups. I can’t count the number of times women have thanked me for giving God my Yes. This was one more of those Yes moments.

I also thought of the incredible opposition that came from so many places as I have stepped into this space. Opposition from the enemy, but also opposition from other people.

I love the quote Brené Brown uses in her work, Daring Greatly from Teddy Roosevelt:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt

This is the kind of wisdom we have to hold on to when we live in a place that requires incredible vulnerability, uncertainty and courage.

I guess you could consider this my acceptance speech. And I do accept this certification with pride, honor and intentionality.

Looking back over my life, I can see how much I’ve learned and grown. I have a love and hunger to care for hurting people that does not make sense most days. I know with confidence that these things were given to me as a gift from God. I wholeheartedly receive this gift and will wake up tomorrow and whisper (probably into my coffee cup), “What’s on the agenda for today, Lord?”

I hope you find this kind of fight within yourself, whatever the area is. I hope you wake up tomorrow, give Him your Yes, and then buckle up for a crazy ride.

Thank you APSATS Board, Laura Hall, Barbara Steffens, Jen Cole, Jeanne, Carol, Dan, Janice and so many others who gave their yeses, too, so we could be way-makers.

About Us, Hope Redefined, pornography addiction, recovery, Uncategorized

Meet Amy

We are so thrilled to introduce Amy Nagy as our newest coach. She began facilitating support groups for wives in 2017 with Hope Redefined, and in May of 2019 completed her education and training to become a Certified Professional Life Coach. She is currently in the process of obtaining her coaching certifications and completing the APSATS training. More importantly, Amy has walked the road of betrayal and is passionate about walking alongside other women experiencing the same trauma. What better way to introduce her, than to allow her to tell part of her story that led her to coaching in her own words.

My passion for Life Coaching was born out of my own trials and the fire the Lord placed in my heart to use what I had been through for His glory and to benefit others. I have experienced betrayal in my marriage and journeyed towards healing due, in part, to the invaluable support of other women who have navigated this path alongside me. Through this process, I have learned that we cannot be islands, God created us for community and we need each other.

My husband and I have been on the road to recovery since 2016.  It was my own experience of being coached through the aftermath of betrayal that impacted me so greatly, and I knew I was being called into coaching to help others. It is my heart and passion to journey with women as they go from paralyzed, hopeless and stuck – to free, filled with hope and energetically moving forward.


In addition, I am a grateful follower of Jesus Christ, a wife of 21 years, a mother to four beautiful children and a teacher.

We are really thankful to have Amy as a part of our coaching team. Its so fun to watch the Lord shape our stories into beauty from ashes. To connect with Amy or schedule a free intro call with her please check out our coaching page for details. or contact us today.

About Us, Hope Redefined

Casting Hope

When I set out on this adventure of supporting women facing sexual betrayal and brokenness in their marriage, I did so with fear and trembling. Even though I felt the Lord calling me into these deeper waters and knew He was the one to open this door for me, that did not mean I walked through it fearlessly. In fact, I picked up a big bag of fear and carried it with me.

My journal pages and prayer times were covered in words of self doubt, fear, uncertainty and disqualifications. I told the Lord at least 50 times why this was a big mistake. I reminded Him that I was a hot mess and not qualified to sit with these women in their pain. As I would whisper those pleas under my breath over and over, I would always hear in return, “I just need you to give them a safe place. I will do the rest.” The more often I heard these words, the more confident I grew in knowing this was all He was asking of me.

As I began offering these women a safe place and showed up for them week after week in our groups, they began having hope in their own stories. I think me “showing up” helped them still have hope in mankind. Our conversations would turn to having hope in God and His plan, and eventually, it would shift to having hope in recovery work and the realization that God was in the middle of it all. As time went on, my hope was strengthened, too. I had a front row seat to witness miracle after miracle in women’s lives, and have had the honor to celebrate their small steps forward and rejoice in their big victories. I have listened as they shared a story and then said, “I don’t know Lyschel, I think I just experienced a miracle from God,” and I would reply, “Let’s call it that!”

photo courtesy of unsplash.com

Hope isn’t something we have to work up, although sometimes, like my coffee cup, I set it down. I believe hope comes from the Lord and is a pass through, similar to the fruits of the spirit. The fruits of the spirit are passed through to us, available through the Spirit that lives in us.

We receive joy and are able to share joy with others. I believe it’s the same for hope. We receive hope from the Lord, therefore we are able to share it freely with others.

Hope is believing in the things not yet seen. Hope is trusting God to do amazing things in another person’s story because you have watched Him do amazing things in yours.

Casting hope means you get to sit in confident assurance that the Lord will show up.

I know I can’t offer a woman any guarantees in her story. I have no idea what the end destination will be for her marriage, her husband or even her own healing. There are so many variables in each of those places. However, I place my confidence in the promises of God. He promises never to leave or forsake us. He promises to guide us when we seek Him wholeheartedly. He promises to use our weaknesses for His gain. When I spend time with the Lord and grow in this knowledge, I begin to settle into these Truths found in His word. I can show up with these promises in hand, and with a greater sense of hope for another person’s story.

So my official job title is Lead Hope Caster with Hope Redefined because I do just that. I cast hope for others because it’s a pass through gift. I pray you will consider yourself a hope caster, too.