Monday, March 1, 2010

"Seasons of Solace" by Janelle Shantz Hertzler

Good Monday morning (or afternoon, if you're in the Eastern time zone)-
I'm one step closer to publishing my book, thanks to a Saturday-night answer to prayer. But that’s not what this e-mail is about. I want to share with you some information on a book I'm reading that may make a difference in you or in someone you love.

Janelle Shantz Hertzler, a friend and writer, sent me a copy of her latest book, "Seasons of Solace, A Story of Healing through Photos and Poems." It's wonderful!

Janelle and her husband John had been working thru a Mennonite organization in Thailand, assisting with economic development, helping AIDS patients, and teaching English. Her husband was killed by a drunk driver, leaving her alone in Thailand with their 18-month-old son Micah.

When Janelle started working thru her grief, she expressed herself in poetry for the first time since high school, and began taking photos of nature. These two creative arts have been combined into a beautiful hardcover book that is helping me in my grief journey as well.

Here is one of my favorite poems from Janelle’s book:

True Me
I know well the me I’m told to be
but I don’t know the me
that was given me to be.
The true me, the inner me,
the deepest me remains unknown.

When I live the me I’m told to be,
I fail, I disappoint, I hurt.

When I show only the me I’m told to be,
I feel shallow and deceptive.
I make promises I cannot keep.

Will I choose the risk
of turning inside out?
What will I find as I get to know the me
I am made to be?

Incredible! Janelle lets us see her deepest hurt and watch as she begins to heal. I especially love the one where she swore at God, then "waited for the proverbial lightening bolt. / But I heard, / 'I've been waiting for you to be real. / Now we can move forward together.'"

In addition to the poetry and photographs in her book, Janelle also provides a list of Recommended Reading, so you can explore and do necessary grief work in your life. These include books on Grief, Reflecting on Loss, Poetry/Writing for Healing, and Photography for Healing.

You can get information Janelle’s book from her website, and from there click on the link to Amazon to purchase it. You may consider buying an extra one as a gift.

Thanks for letting me share this with you. Let me know how you like the book. You can also e-mail Janelle thru her website and tell her as well.

I'll keep you posted on my book, "Stepping Thru Cancer, A Step-by-Step Guide for the Journey," and when I'm starting my speaking ministry. Looking forward to seeing you and hearing from you.
Love to all-