About the Book
Book: Grasping Hope
Author: Heather Greer
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Release Date: March 2019
When dreams turn into nightmares what’s left to hold onto?
Katie McGowan knows her fears are irrational. They’re also beyond her control. Her mind says her fiancé is faithful, but the betrayal of her past love ignites a fear stronger than her trust. Attempts to overcome it are unsuccessful. Nothing banishes her panic attacks for good. Dreading Austin’s response if he finds out about her struggle to trust, Katie hides the truth nearly destroying their relationship.
It takes a lesson in hope to start healing. Katie is released from the nightmares holding her captive to enjoy the blessings God has given. But when tragedies change her life forever, Katie’s understanding of hope is challenged. Unresolved anger and disappointment leave Katie doubting the sincerity of her beliefs. Desperate to prove her faith and minimize her failure as a believer, Katie buries her feelings beneath all the right words. Katie must learn where true hope is found or risk losing her faith under the weight of the things she has lost.
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About the Author
Heather Greer is a pastor’s kid and pastor’s wife from southern Illinois. Though her nest is quickly approaching the empty stage, with three of her four children out on their own, she enjoys the times she gets to spend with all her children, husband, and grandson. Equal mix geek and romantic, you could as easily find Heather watching an episode of Doctor Who as the latest Hallmark movie. Of course, you may find her baking, reading, or crafting too!
Heather’s writing and teaching ministries revolve around a passion to see believers grow in their faith. Though God has used her most often with teens and adults, she has worked in ministries reaching all age groups through the years. It is Heather’s prayer for God to use what she writes in her books and on her blog to challenge and encourage readers in their faith walks.
More from Heather
Often, we throw around the word hope as if it’s a fancy replacement for a wish. Nothing could be further from the truth. Godly hope is more than wishing our circumstances were different without any indication that our desire could become reality. When our hope is based on who God is and what He has promised in His word, it becomes something to anchor us in the troubling times we go through. It is what allows us to give the circumstances that weigh us down to God and go on living life even though physically there may be no changes in what’s happening.
Hope isn’t pretending the bad stuff isn’t there. And it isn’t acting as if the hard things don’t hurt. Hope doesn’t erase the hurt or ignore the problems, but it does free us from allowing our emotions and circumstances to control us. Hope lets us have peace that makes no sense to the rest of the world. Hope allows us to rest in the middle of the trial. Hope based on scriptural truths allows us to live with joy even when things aren’t going our way.
As I wrote Grasping Hope, God took me to places that challenged and grew my own understanding of what it means to have hope as an anchor to our souls (Hebrews 6:19). When I started writing, I had no idea the path God would take me down to show me just how little I understood about hope. It’s something I never want to repeat and wouldn’t wish on anyone. But the lessons I learned grew me as a believer, and it is my prayer that what I learned through this difficult time in my life comes through clearly for everyone who reads Grasping Hope.
As with so many of the books that I sign up to review, this one surprised me, and in the best way. Not only is the title exceedingly appropriate during this current COVID-19 crisis, but the biblical lessons that it imparts are just as fitting. In moments of joy and of heartache, God always shows up to remind us that He has been with us all along, and that His strength is truly all that we need.
A sequel to “Faith’s Journey”, Heather Greer’s “Grasping Hope” continues Katie McGowan’s story, but it can also be read as a standalone. For the full impact, however, I would recommend reading both. Of the two, this second one is my favorite because it spoke to my heart on a more personal level. As the story began, I was concerned that it would end up being too despondent, but even though it is in many ways a heavy read, Greer writes it with an uplifting tone. In fact, I am glad that the story did not end with Katie and Austin getting married because a saccharine happily-ever-after would have diluted the power of this story. Greer achieves a seamless balance between joy and despair while taking readers on what could easily be a real-life journey. Katie’s struggles are familiar to so many of us, myself included. She suffers panic attacks from a previous relationship and has feelings of unworthiness and insecurity, acknowledging that “God is working, even in me, even with this mess. I’m just tired of feeling like a flunky of the faith who can’t even pray with the faith of a mustard seed to get through this.” At one time or another, we all feel this way, but that is when we need to draw nearer to the Lord and to His Word. Sometimes when it seems that all hope is lost, that is the point at which God steps in and astounds us with His power and grace.
Engaging and emotional, “Grasping Hope” reveals our need for utter dependence on God. As with Katie, so many things happen in our lives and in the world that don’t seem to make sense, but when we trust and rely on God’s sovereignty over every situation and every tragedy, we can experience the peace that only Jesus gives. In the novel, Katie realizes that “God didn’t promise her that if she followed Him, she wouldn’t have to go through the fire or flood. He promised that He would be there with her when she did.” I love that Greer points this out because it is so easy to forget that God doesn’t always remove the pain or circumstances, but He does go with us through them every step of the way. May our prayer echo Katie’s: “Take my fears and let me face whatever the future holds with real hope that I can only find in knowing You.”
I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
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