There is one message I want others to know, and it is this: you’re not alone.
You are not alone. This fundamental principle we wrote Destination Hope: A Travel Companion When Life Falls Apart.
Early in my journey, when a rare neuromuscular disease hijacked my body, I sought refuge in the Lord and in counseling. In the serene therapist’s office, I unpacked my heart and read the thoughts I’d scribbled onto pages. Mascara smeared across my cheeks as I wiped the snot with a tissue-futile attempt to clean up from an “ugly” cry.
“Do you have any books for me to read about what I’m going through?” I asked my counselor.
Pointing to my tear-stained pages, she said, “I think you should write the book.”
Destination Hope: A Travel Companion When Life Falls Apart is the result.
While there were books available for specific disease states or losing a loved one, there was not a book about how to cope with identity loss, triggers, and secondary losses.
Simultaneously, Marilyn Nutter was the editor for Penned from the Heart, a 365 devotional companion. She’d approved several of my devotions for publication. We became Facebook friends. Her words about grief resonated with me. While I hadn’t lost a spouse, I, too, understood what it was like to have an identity loss. Marilyn took off her wedding band, and I retired my pharmacist lab coat to the back of the closet.
Providence allowed Marilyn and me to meet in person at the Ashville’s Christian Writer’s Conference at Billy Graham’s The Cove. We sat under the massive stone fireplace and felt a prompt from the Holy Spirit to take our friendship to another level. Little did we know the Creator was weaving our story together to create a message of hope spanning generations.
The dozen of brave women who also wove their story of hope in Destination Hope illustrated the various struggles that we may face. The story of hope in our book is not about my chronic illness or Marilyn’s grief, nor is it about the family with a special needs child, a prodigal child, financial reversal, infertility, drug abuse, etc. But it is finding hope in Christ who promises to “never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:8).
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.” (Isaiah 43:1-2, ESV)
Friends, when you scroll through Facebook or the Gram my deepest desire is not likes, comments, or shares (although that spreads the message of hope further😉). Instead, I want you to know you are not alone in your mess. I want you to know a loving Heavenly Father knows you by name. In quote verse he says, “You are mine” (Isaiah 43:1)
🌱You can find me pulling weeds in the garden, baking cookies, or reading. When I’m not there, you can find me on Instagram, Facebook, and chatting in our Destination Hope Facebook group. Hey, why don’t you join me there! Link up with like-minded sojourners. Join me for Jesus, coffee, and afternoon naps.
Hugs & Hope,
©2022 April Dawn White
Photo by Andrew Wolff on Unsplash