Happy Sunday, and happy first weekend of football season! I’m using this long weekend to get caught up on graduate work and blog posts–it’s been far too long since I’ve shared a book review with you.
I like to read lots of different genres, and I know that not everyone likes the different types of books I write about. That’s why typically I don’t talk about books as “must-reads.” But I’m going to go out on a limb today and say that everyone can find something to take away from the amazing story in this book. What book, you might ask? Today’s post is about Hope Heals: A True Story of Overwhelming Loss and Overcoming Love by Katherine and Jay Wolf. So here it comes–a sentence I didn’t really think I’d write on this blog:
Guys, you have to read this book.
This book is the true story of Katherine Wolf and her husband Jay. The Wolfs met each other in college and got married soon after. In 2008, Katherine suffered a massive brain stem stroke. She miraculously survived a very dangerous surgery, and spent 40 days in ICU. Even after all this, she and her husband and their young son, James, were left with tremendous challenges to overcome.
What I love about this book is not just the amazing story of God working miracles in Katherine’s life. I love that Katherine and Jay write about suffering and loss with a grace and hope that are beautiful to behold. God has given them a tremendous ability to relate to others without sounding preachy, patronizing, or as if they have a monopoly on suffering.
The difficult part of reading this book is knowing that at any moment something like this could happen to any one of us. In fact, most of us have faced suffering in the past, and we will face it in the future–that’s the nature of the world we live in. I think of all the people whose lives have been so tragically affected by hurricane Harvey. In the middle of our normal lives, storms can arrive that have the power to derail us and rob us of hope. The message of this book is that our hope in Jesus is stronger than any of our suffering.
Even if whatever you’re walking through isn’t as overwhelming or worrying as what the Wolf family walked through, there is truth in this book for you! Here are just a few snippets of the text that I absolutely loved:
How quickly we forget the miracles of our past as we step into an uncertain future, fearing we’ve used up our allotment of God’s provision and we’re all out of miracles (125).
One day, the arc of our stories will all make perfect sense. One day, we will trace the lines of our scars and find them to have fallen in the most pleasant of places, to see in them our great inheritance. One day, we won’t need to hope, nor will we need to be healed because we will be face-to-face with the source of both, the source of everything…Jesus. And in the glory of His face, the darkest suffering and loss we have endured will fade like shadows at daybreak (244-5).
So, whether you are walking through a season of suffering or you know someone who is, I can’t recommend Hope Heals highly enough. Paperback/Hardback/Audible/Kindle/ whatever you have to do–grab a copy and read it!