Thursday, December 6, 2012

Can I Get A Little Personal?

I try not to talk about myself too much. You might not realize this, but I'm more comfortable in the background and have always been a better listener than a talker. I'm feeling kind of awkward right now because I want to tell you a bit about my book and my kids, but I guess no one is forcing you to read this . . . so here goes . . .

I hadn't seen two of my kids for over a year, so my trip to Seattle over Thanksgiving was really special for me. Just in case they were interested, I took along one of my books. I don't push this book on anyone---not even my kids! Can you imagine my surprise when they asked for their books? "You brought me a copy of your book, right, Mom?" They were each expecting one!

The Seattle branch of my family:
my son Brad, and daughter Lisa
In my efforts to cram one-week of winter clothing into one carry-on suitcase for the plane, I'd only brought one book. I didn't think they'd really want to read it, or they could share. But---just like when they were little, bless their hearts, lol--- they didn't want to share! They each wanted their own! Brad firmly told me he wanted his book mailed to him with a personal note and autograph. Yikes! This brought me up short! What could I say in a note to him about the profound and personal experience of his father's death and the birth of my book?

After I got home from Seattle, I stewed and stewed. What could I write in his book? A few days ago my time was up and I simply had to mail it along with some other stuff of his that had turned up with our move. Here's what I finally wrote:

Dear Brad, When I had no words, God did. And His words filled my silence and pain just like your dad said they would. Here's my heart. Love always, Mom

After I wrote that, I thumbed through Postcards from the Widows' Path, reading it for the first time in several months. And you know what? Please don't take this the wrong way, but it's really good! I can't believe I wrote it! It's honest, and gentle, and alive. And the wonderful thing is that as you read the story of Ruth, Naomi and me--- your own hope begins to grow.

The various Bible verses I found are so rich and truthful, speaking directly to the pain and needs of grieving people. The prayers are simply stated but deeply saturated with the character of God and the human condition. Naomi and Ruth step out of history and into daily life. And woven throughout the pages we see that the veil of eternity is only a heartbeat away. 

Others have told me the book is powerful . . . it's one of the best books for widows . . . I felt joy and wonder as I read . . .

So, since I mention resources for widows on Thursdays, please allow me to recommend my own resource. You know I won't mention it often, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't. It's just that I don't like talking about myself much. Click right here to order, or pass this link along to "Santa." Consider getting an extra copy for your church library or for a gift for another widow and you'll save on shipping.

P.S. You're always welcome to visit me and my family, and my clumsy adjusting to life in the South on my personal blog: Southern Living Yankee. Y'all come!


  1. Dear Ferree,

    I am so pleased that you pushed past being uncomfortable and shared more about yourself.

    How sweet your children are and how proud they must be of their Mom! The courage and strength to get to where you are today and to help others is truly a gift.

    What you wrote to your son in the book is perfect and it's just priceless.

    Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts about your book. You have no idea how helpful that is! I have your book on my nightstand. I have yet to read it. I see it every night. I think I've been so afraid to read it because I'm having such a difficult time with my loss. I fear it will be too much if I read anything about widows, loss, grieving...If that makes any sense at all?

    What you wrote though, I am looking at it from your perspective and your view of your book. Thank you so much for that.


  2. Ferree, what you wrote in your son's copy of your book was beautiful. It nearly brought me to tears. Your children are your first "mission field," so it is important that they too hear the words of wisdom God has laid on your heart.

    Since your book came from God working through you, why should you not promote it? I found reading it a true blessing. Thank you for all that you do for widows. It was also a pleasure to meet you some months back in WI.

  3. It IS good, Ferree. I cried when I read each chapter of your manuscript. God has used your very personal sorrow as well as the sorrow of Ruth, Orpah, and Naomi to speak to this widow's heart. I don't know what my future holds, but I can look at you and the widows in your book and see that there is hope and that God is with me in my grief and loneliness.

  4. Your book is REALLY good Ferree and like Candy I cried also. I read it the way you suggested. Starting with the postcards at the beginning of every chapter. I went back to the first chapter and read it in about a week. I'm preparing to read it again probably at the beginning of the year. Slower this time, taking notes and journaling. I've been praying that hopefully a Godly widow I recently met and I can get together and go through your book together. I'm thankful the Lord led me to your blog.

  5. Hi Ferree,
    I went through the same emotions and feelings last week when I had to sign my own book for my daughters. It's something we have to write so personal and hope we can send the right message. Now that my book is done (yeah!) I look forward to reading yours. It will be on my list for the New Year!! Cindy

  6. Your comments are so helpful, "thanks" to each of you. @Cindy--congrats on getting the book published! Please send me a link. @Mari--I'm so glad for your reading plan. I think you'll really glean a wealth of wisdom as you go through it that variety of ways. The Bible is so rich that the more we go through it, the more we find. "Postcards. . ." is based on the Bible and it'll also give you new insights as you re-read it and do the journaling. @Candy, Sharon and Cathy--I will take to heart the words from each of you. {{Hugs}} all around!

  7. Ferree,it was really nice to read about your family and get to see a photo of your son and daughter. You do have lovely kids. Your words to your son are 'something else'. You have a way with words, I believe it's a gift and your relationship with the Lord and faith in Him comes through what you say to minister to people and bless them. This is my experience as I follow your blog, lifeboat and particularly in your response to my mails to you so I know your book will be good. God led me to your blog during my darkest and most traumatic stage of widowhood and with the way I have been bless I can only say all you do is God inspired. Thank you for allowing Him use you to bless so many widows. Halima


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