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Intersection Column | Finding Goodness in the Darkest of Places


by Janyre Tromp

 

Patience is not one of my strengths.

 

I’m not talking about the patience required for a long grocery checkout line. I’m talking about the patience behind years of I thought I was called to this dream, and yet nothing is happening.

 

I mean, I have very good reasons for why I want something and when I want it delivered. Don’t we all? But sometimes waiting is best. Sometimes we have to trust that while we see a tiny portion of time, God sees everything, and He is oh so good.

 

Let me tell you my story.

 

Eight long years ago I finished writing Darkness Calls the Tiger. Agents and editors raved about it but told me they couldn't sell a WWII book set in Burma, a country no one knew anything about. (For the record, Burma is modern day Myanmar and sits between China and India.)

I would like to say that I cheerfully set aside the story of Kailyn Moran’s struggle with anger and fear as she watched the destruction of the village she loved.

 

But I didn’t.

 

I loved everything about Kailyn and Ryan’s story—the history and legends, along with their heart-wrenching yet hope-filled world. Why would God slam the publishing door in my face?

 

The unanswered question led to frustration as I researched and wrote the next book. And more frustration as I studied forgiveness, trust, and their connection to abundant life. I hated the churning in my gut and had no idea what to do about it.

 

Then, just about the time the book would have released if I'd found a publisher, I rushed my daughter to the hospital with a mysterious illness that had plagued her for months.

 

My twelve-year-old and I spent months in ERs, PICUs, surgery units, and doctor’s offices, fighting for her life and slowly learning that she had had undiagnosed appendicitis for months, followed by a ruptured appendix that went undiagnosed. As a result, she will experience a lifetime of struggle.

 

Talk about frustration! And anger? I felt that, too.

 

One thought kept circling as I wrote two more stories, hit bestseller lists, and won awards:

 

My book about forgiveness in the midst of life’s hard moments would have languished if it had released when I thought best. Even worse, the pages would be missing of some of the powerful realizations I discovered in my most difficult moments:

 

Before my girl’s crisis, I knew forgiveness was necessary, but I didn’t know how much anger scorches the grudge holder. Now I choose forgiveness because I know what Kailyn says is true: Without forgiveness, “nothing could stop the flames. Anger would burn until I crumbled into the ashes of the legend. Alone.”

 

As I watched other people comfort my girl, I realized that presence often heals more powerfully than words. And so Ryan, a jovial, big-hearted man, sits quietly with the woman he’s grown to respect and love. He allows her the space to grieve and refuses to abandon her to despair.

 

And as I process my own fear, I’m learning that vulnerability is the most courageous, most healing gift one person can offer another. But you’ll have to read the book to see how that plays out . . . I can’t tell you without spoiling the ending!

 

God sometimes makes us wait to help us grow or shield us. Sometimes He holds us back in order to give us our heart’s desire.

 

As I wait, I often remind myself that if it isn’t good yet, God’s not done yet.

 

We can run ourselves ragged trying to manipulate life. Or we can believe God isn’t finished, forgive, and wait patiently for God’s intervention.

 

About the Author

Janyre Tromp is an award-winning, best-selling author who writes heart-wrenching, hope-filled historical novels with a healthy dose of suspense. She’s also a mom, an award-winning editor, and a wrangler. You can find her on social media (@JanyreTromp) or her website www.JanyreTromp.com.

 

About the Book

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, war descends like a tempest upon the mountain peaks, and an unbreakable bond forms between Kailyn, the daughter of a widowed missionary, and Ryan. Despite their tireless efforts to save the village, a brutal enemy shatters almost everything they love, and Ryan must fight to protect Kai from the deadly consequences of her choice for revenge.

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