(No compensation was taken for this brief review of “Journey to Heal” by Crystal Sutherland. As a friend of the author and a believer in finding healing from brokenness, I want to share with you the very relevant message of hope, healing, and faith that Crystal offers us in these pages.)
Today is Mother’s Day. For many of us, we are celebrating the woman who has loved us from the start. However, today can also be a painful reminder for some who were abused, abandoned, rejected, or unloved by a parent (or both parents).
Crystal Sutherland and I became friends several years ago when we were going to the same church and regularly frequenting the same Starbucks. She was in the process of writing a book, but I didn’t know the content she would be sharing with her audience. Every time we ran into each other, she had papers, a Bible, and her laptop sprawled across a coffee table. She was in her happy place (or so I thought). Little did I know that she was sharing a side of her life that was invisible to the human eye.
When we first met, Crystal seemed too happy, as if she was living a life that was unscathed by this fallen world. When she said she was writing a book, I had no idea how many broken words were being spilled out of her soul onto digital paper. She was writing about brokenness, while I could only see a friend who appeared to be a happy wife, mother, and writer who had an addiction to coffee.
It’s crazy to think about all the pain and brokenness taking place within the hearts of those we meet each day, yet we have no idea…
Crystal wasn’t always happy as she appeared, yet I didn’t know the depth of her pain. When she was a young girl, she was sexually abused by her step-father. Her Mom didn’t believe (or want to believe) Crystal when she shared what was taking place, which left her alone in a personal hell created by another’s wickedness.
She has since experienced great healing from her broken past, reminding us that healing is very real for us all. Furthermore, we learn about a girl who found the embrace of her true Father, despite the heartache and pain she endured.
“Journey to Heal” is much more than a book; these pages contain wisdom, insight, and encouragement for those who are trying to recover from a similar past of pain, heartache, and loneliness.
As someone who suffers from a severe anxiety disorder and depression, this book has breathed life and hope into my heart, as well. We are ALL broken, yet we don’t always know how to find our way to healing. Crystal has been through hell, yet she has been on a journey of healing that we all crave.
I had the privilege of joining her book launch team, which also meant that I got a copy of the book before it was released. Yes, I felt pretty awesome. “I have the advanced copy of a new release due in Spring 2016.” The word “advanced” = awesome in this context. I dove in and found so much life, hope, and encouragement from within. One quote stood out to me that I would like to share:
“When we choose to believe untruths about our worth, we naturally develop a false belief system. That belief system becomes the lens through which we see ourselves and others. It becomes our identity. But if we challenge that way of thinking and apply a God-filter to our lives, we rebuild our sense of worth and discover who we really are.” – Crystal Sutherland
Dang. Those aren’t words that just speak to a specific audience; those words speak to EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US. We have all believed untruths about ourselves that have wrongfully defined who we are in our own eyes.
“Journey to Heal” is a story of experiencing terrible pain, finding healing, and meeting the Father who will never abandon His children.
If you would like to join the journey, below are a few links where you can purchase a copy of the book. If you know anyone who has gone through great suffering and could use encouragement, I would highly recommend this book as a gift, as well. This book won’t solve all of your problems (which is impossible), but it does share such incredible truth about healing, hope, love, life, and our eternal Father.