My heart is full as I return home from the formal launch of my book at Barnes and Noble. God has a hand in each of our lives. I witnessed the miracle of connection – connection with family and friends who came to support me, as well as those whose paths crossed mine for the first time today because of our common experiences.
I spoke with moms and dads, sisters and brothers, aunts and uncles who opened their hearts and shared of their own losses and the dark days of their own despair. And yet, their hearts are bright as they shared love and light with me.
One woman had seen the book last month at an Out of the Darkness Walk. She happened into the store today and shared with me glimpses of her own journey that began two years ago with the loss of her aunt – her mom’s sister. How grateful I am that our paths crossed again.
I received encouragement and light from Erica Hammon, author of Top Ten Strategies for Student Engagement. Her countenance radiated love and her positive energy was contagious. And I was blessed to partner with Angela Baxter, the talented designer of my book cover, as she signed copies of her own beautiful book, Amazing Grace. One young woman entered the store and saw the banner announcing HOPE. She had already read the book, Hope After Suicide. She was led to it on the store’s shelf after her own period of depression several weeks ago. She shared with me how her life was touched as she began her own healing journey by reading about my journey from darkness to light. And mine was touched that God brought the two of us together, reminding me that he is indeed the master weaver – weaving a beautiful tapestry from our life experiences and the people we meet. Sometimes we don’t understand why a certain thread was chosen, or how they all fit together, but God does. And every now and then, we catch a glimpse of the design – and for those brief moments, I am grateful.