book review on grief

In Search of Resources for Grief

In search of Resources for Grief

This month on the blog, we have been sharing journeys with grief. Today, I want to share a few resources for grief that I have found this month.

Personally, I am not on a journey with grief; however, there are many ways to suffer a loss that requires a grieving process. I (Mandy) have lost much in recent years including my health, my ministry with my husband, our home, our bank account, and our small annuity. I shared more specifically on this two years ago with my friend and fellow blogger, Nan Jones.

In searching for what to share this month, I discovered a new book just getting ready to release in November. It was on a list of books to preview and review so I picked it up.

A book release, Loss, Survive, Thrive


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Just like the other posts I have shared this month. Loss, Survive, Thrive is a collection of grief stories from grieving parents. Stories told by fathers and mothers who have lost children due to many senseless tragedies:

  • Loss of a Baby
  • Death Through Illness and Disease
  • Loss through Accidents
  • Loss Through Suicide
  • Through Mental Illness Leading to Death
  • Drug Addictions
  • Murder
  • and Even One who Experienced Multiple Deaths

There are no words

Mark Twain, always a master at painting pictures with words, was left utterly speechless when attempting to express how he felt after the death of his twenty-four-year-old Susie. He wrote, “To do so would bankrupt the vocabulary of all the languages.” To this day, that is the best description of grief I have come across.

Susan Whitmore, Loss, Survive, Thrive

These stories will tear at your soul and tug at your heartstrings. They will bring tears to your eyes. But still, no words come to mind to make the journeys easier.

However, this book is not all sadness because these families also walked through the strife into thriving. Each family found a way to make sense of it all, if only slightly. They found ways to speak this child’s name for eternity; a way to remove the senseless reasons behind the grief. Of course, grief journeys will always seem senseless but if we look closely, we can find a way to keep them from being useless.

Grief journeys will always seem senseless but if we look closely, we can find a way to keep them from being useless. #netgalley #bookreview #losssurvivethrive Click To Tweet

These families have found that in sharing their journeys with grief they are able to help others travel through similar sorrows. In doing so, they found that their own grief became just a tinge easier to bear because now we can all bear it together.

C.S. Lewis says, “We read to know that we are not alone.” Anyone striving through a journey of grief can read this collection of stories and maybe, just maybe it will hold them up a bit.

Susan Whitmore, Loss, Survive, Thrive

Finding Ways to Thrive

Someone once said to never let a trial be wasted. Grief works in ways that teach us to help others. When I lived far from home and would get lonely, my mother always told me to reach out and help someone else. It really does make a difference and somehow brings joy into any situation.

Some of the ways these families have found to pay something forward include establishing groups or foundations that can help support others in the same place.

If you need some grief support, maybe their actions will be the place you find peace in your sorrow. Here are a few resources for grief shared in the book.

“In some ways suffering ceases to be suffering at the moment it finds a meaning.”

-Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

Thank you, NetGalley, Meryl Hershey Beck, & publisher, Rowman & Littlefield for giving me a copy and allowing me the opportunity to read and review this new book.


But something was missing

I found this above-mentioned book excellent for finding connection with others who have lost children. Also, it is encouraging for finding a way to thrive beyond the grief; however, for me as a Christian, I found something missing.

While some did mention God, I found it quite lacking in stories of faith. Families that leaned hard into the hope that comes only from God. So I went looking for another option for you. I remembered my author/blogger/friend, Karen Sebastian who writes about the hope she has found in the dark places of her own life.

Ride the Waves to Comfort

I realized that I already had purchased two of Karen’s books and they were waiting for me right on my Kindle:

  • The Power of Hope in Mourning: Ride the Waves to Comfort
  • The Power of Hope for Caregivers

Karen’s The Power of Hope in Mourning: Ride the Waves to Comfort is about her journey of losing her father. “Ride the Waves” was a phrase her father used while she was growing up, encouraging Karen to “go with the flow” and things would turn out alright.

Relating to our day-to-day, even moment-by-moment, journey through grief Karen will walk with you through your pain. She “rides the wave” with you as you, knowing that God is there carrying you through.

You will find her guidance towards hope neatly put together with lessons from her own journey with grief, practical advice, and spiritual guidance. This Hope that is missing from the aforementioned book review is everywhere in this book.


A thought of my own

We often hear others say that God will not allow us to go through more than we can bear. However, this statement is not Biblical. The truth is that you WILL go through much more than you can bear. But the joy in this is: GOD CAN BEAR IT! Just rest in Him and His comfort.

Rabbi Harold Kushner reminds us “We can endure much more than we think we can; all human experience testifies to that. All we need to do is learn not to be afraid of pain. Grit your teeth and let it hurt. Don’t deny it, don’t be overwhelmed by it. It will not last forever. One day, the pain will be gone and you will still be there.

Additionally, I must add to Kushner’s thought; lean hard into God. He promises to take care of us. He promises to go through the high waters with us. And when we come out on the other end, we will be stronger, wiser, more understanding, and probably a bunch more.

when we come out on the other end, we will be stronger, wiser, more understanding, and probably a bunch more. #grief #trials Click To Tweet

Hold to His Promises of Hope;

Mandy Farmer

I pray these resources for grief are helpful for you. May God hold you in His arms and comfort you today and always.

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4 thoughts on “In Search of Resources for Grief

  1. Jolene says:

    I have gone through a season of grief over the death of my marriage. I am so thankful that God is walking with me in my season of grief.

    • Mandy Farmer says:

      I’m sorry to hear of your marriage breakup. It must be a difficult thing to deal with. Divorce definitely has it’s own journey of grief that one must go through. Have you read Lysa Terkhurst’s book, “It’s not supposed to be this way”. It’s an excellent book that she wrote while going through marriage breakup and cancer at the same time.

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