No Guts : God’s Glory

Parents divorced when I was five. One of four kids of a single mom. Angry at God, decided I was an atheist. Diagnosed with severe Ulcerative colitis, spent 23 days in the hospital, one of which was my 15th birthday. Almost died. Doctors wanted to remove my colon, I said no. Angrier at God.

Moved out of state right before my senior year of high school. Met a great girl (now my wife, high school sweethearts, great love story). She’s a Christian, different than the other ones I hated before. Church with her family on Christmas Eve. My world is rocked. I spend three weeks reading Jesus and apologetics. Give up my fight and anger and become a Christian, too.

I make the tough decision to stay at home for a year after high school. Don’t want my family to not know Christ. Within that year my entire family is also with Jesus. Me and the aforementioned girl decide to go to college together. God tells me to study philosophy and religion. We get married young, three weeks after finishing undergrad.

I spent three years dying from colitis flare-ups. I end up in the hospital for blood transfusions multiple times.  All the while I labor through a part-time job, grad assistantship, and my Master’s degree to triumphantly defend a thesis that looked impossible to complete. For a year I am too burnt out to pursue a PhD, the next logical step.

Last year the colitis finally did me in. Had to have my entire colon removed. In the hospital for eleven days, I almost die again, this time from sepsis. I spend two months at home recovering with a huge open wound and a new, permanent, ostomy. The entire time, my wife and I are preparing to move to Tennessee as members of a new church in Murfreesboro. We joined the team before my surgery, but have to struggle through my recovery before we can move.

We take the leap and move last October, both without jobs. We live with my in-laws for four months, find jobs, buy a house in Murfreesboro this past February. Awesome things are happening at the church plant. Inspired by Jeff Goins, I start a blog called No Guts : God’s Glory to tell my story, one painful piece at a time. My health is improving but it’s still a battle. Through writing the blog, I start to gather perspective about the past, courage about the future, and deeper faith in God.

Then we find out a month ago that we are expecting our first child. Then I get an interview for a dream job I prayed for and pursued for almost a year, and get rejected. Then my wife loses her job a few weeks ago. I am struggling to figure out what’s next. I’m sure Jesus will make it big and dramatic, like most of my story so far. I trust Him.

About the Author: My name is Matthew McDaniel and I am telling my full story at No Guts : God’s Glory (

Thinking of making my ever-growing but lightly-read blog into a book. Tell me what you think.

About the Author


This is a post by a guest author. To submit your own story of how you got wrecked, click here.

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