It seems as if each month, HOPress-ShorehouseBooks.com gets a request from an organization for a shipment of Mary Farr’s book If I Could Mend Your Heart. A retired hospital and hospice chaplain, Mary has experienced first hand the grip that grief holds over everyone–and it is not just the grief of death. It is all grief. Recently, even before this Covid-19 madness, Mary has been involved with hospitals to help stave off the burn out that healthcare professionals experience. Now, more than ever, they need our support. For organizations who might want If I Could Mend Your Heart in their toolbox of help for healthcare professionals, get in touch with us at Donna@humoroutcasts.com or if you would like us to connect you with Mary about virtual programs for staff. As we have in the past, we will do all we can to help you get this book to those who need it most. You might also want to go to Mary’s website directly http://desire-to-inspire.net/
A friend called today to ask how I planned to occupy my time during the Covid-19 stay-at-home order. “Truthfully, I hoped to hunker down and complete a new book.”
She paused and then added, “But writing a book seems like such a grueling marathon unless, of course, you write a best seller.”
“Or,” I replied, “unless you feel genuinely called to write that book. This was the case for me when I wrote a little book titled, If I Could Mend Your Heart. Today I read it again.
Years of hospital chaplaincy—listening, affirming, and comforting patients and their loved ones—I learned a great deal. Specifically, I learned the language of sorrow and healing: what is helpful and generative at the time of a tragedy and what is not?
This tender little book, takes readers down a path that illustrates how life offers us plenty of gifts, adventures, and splendid opportunities. Yet it also tests us with setbacks, dead ends, hellos and good-byes. Jobs begin and end. Sickness and suffering arise. A day likely comes in each of our lives when we meet head on with an unthinkable event or loss of heartbreaking scale.
Searching for meaning and comfort, we set out on an un-mapped passage through sorrow, confusion, and back we pray, to health and whole-hearted living.
None of us comes fully prepared to walk through grief. My goal for readers is that they discover a bright jewel of comfort and hope in this little book. The words come straight from my heart and life experience. Each page reflects the voices of children, friends, physicians, and hospital patients I’ve met along the way.
A Reason to Hope
I said to the night
That stood at the gate of Spring ascending,
“Give me a light
that I might tread safely
into the dark and through the unknown.”
And a voice said in reply,
“Put your hand into the hand of the one who made you,
and your reward will be
blessed with more light,
far safer than the unknown.
A moment when God speaks
And we humans hear and are moved toward love.