I thought I would do something a little bit different, today: I’m going to share my thoughts about a book I just finished reading, kind of like a personalized book review. I was positively affected by this inspirational book, and I think you’d get a lot out of it, too.
|Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash|
Deneen Joyner is based here in Pittsburgh, and I had the pleasure of meeting her at a holiday craft market back in December at the Green Heiress Yoga Studio. When I met her, I was immediately struck by her warm and friendly nature. We talked for a few moments, and I found out that her book, Soul Wounds and Sacred Revelations, would be the featured Soul Cafe Book Club book for February.
Anyway, I bought Ms. Joyner’s book in the Kindle edition and hunkered down for some reading in preparation for the meeting on February 6th. I thought I knew what I was getting into based on the description, but to be honest, I had no idea! What I thought would be a light, inspirational read turned into some soul-searching of my own.
In her book, Ms. Joyner takes you through a journey that starts with staring at herself in the bathroom mirror as she contemplates ending her life. In her darkest hour in that bathroom, she had a choice to make: surrender herself to God in order to fully heal, or end it right there and then.
She tells her story so vulnerably, transparently, and beautifully. Her voice is warm, accessible, and friendly. You feel like you’re getting to know her as you read. There may be points in this book where you find yourself crying along with her, but you will also smile with her or pump your fist in the air and yell “YES!” when she makes a breakthrough. (I legit did this!)
You may even feel chills as something she says resonates.
But most of all, you may see yourself in her story.
At about halfway through, I realized that this book was giving me an actual road map to root out and deal with some deep-seated emotional pain that I’ve been carrying. Because we all do carry pain from our experiences with us, right? Some of us more than others. If you ask yourself, “What emotional pain am I carrying?” I bet you’ll find something in there.
Does it feel comfortable carrying that pain?
I’ll be the first to raise my hand and say: sure, yeah, in some way, it does, because it’s been a part of me for so long. But I realize that I don’t have to live like that any more. While I've done a lot of healing in my life, there is always room for more. :)
As she writes, Ms. Joyner details the approach she took to finally confront the pain she’d been carrying and then progress her life forward without it. It’s a story of hope, renewal, forgiveness, love (for others and self), and being real with yourself. It’s about connecting your past to your present and becoming whole. It’s about stepping into your full realization in life instead of blindly “living” it.
After reading this book and sitting back and taking a deep breath, I’ve started some more soul work. I feel like some kind of soul archaeologist right now, digging into myself to get to the bottom of things. It’s like I’m meeting me all over again: Beth as a kid. Beth as a teen. Beth in her 20s. Beth in her 30s. And onward...
This is kind of deep, ya’ll!
If you want to read someone’s amazing, inspirational and uplifting story, then this is definitely the right book for you! Who knows, you may even find yourself on your own journey to your whole, healed self.
At the time of this writing, it’s free on Kindle Unlimited or very modestly priced if you buy it outright in either the Kindle edition, hard cover, or paperback. If you live in the Pittsburgh area and meet Deneen Joyner at some point, I bet she’ll even sign it for you.
I give it a 5 out of 5 stars. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
If you read it, let me know what you think!
Until next time: Be Well. 💛🐝