Intersection Column | Finding Your Lost Soul
by Jaime Jo Wright
When I wrote The Souls of Lost Lake, I had no idea that choosing to include a mother passing away from cancer would become a firsthand experience. The edits for this book dropped the week of my mother’s very sudden passing from cancer. We had about three days to prepare from the moment we found out she was terminal to the moment I helped her cross the finish line into her Savior’s arms.
Opening edits the following week and facing down a similar death scene in Lost Lake was daunting, to say the least. I had to go internally to my own soul and ask what I had lost and how to transpose that onto the page so that not only was the scene authentic, but also it didn’t leave the reader feeling the emptiness of death.
So, what had I lost? In my instinctual reaction, I listed it out: my best friend, my confidant, my earthly source of strength, my listening ear, my comfort, my heart, my soul . . . that was my mom. The saying “goodbye” was the worst moment of my life. Death wrenched from my grasp the main person I believed I could not exist without. It was loss like none I had ever experienced before. The idea of trying to write it in a novel was gutting.
I took a step back. There was something about the word “lost” that wasn’t resonating with me. Had I “lost” my mom? In basic terms, one would say that yes, I had. But in terms of the soul? Was she lost? And that is when hope began to spring its shafts of light into my own soul. Mom was not lost. She had never been lost. The all-encompassing message of her faith, the very roots and soul of who she was, contradicted the idea that I had lost her. She didn’t need to be found. I knew exactly where she was.
There was a moment, as Momma drifted into the arms of Jesus, when her brows furrowed, and an expression was on her face for a moment. It was the expression she always had when experiencing deep emotion, and not the negative/grieving kind, but the inspiring and overwhelming emotion of joy. I know she saw Jesus then. That was the moment Mom left me and transferred her address to her Home. I whispered to her, “Run, Momma, run. Run to Jesus.” And she did. I helped her run and then, at the finish line, I released her hand. For a moment. For a spot in time.
But I know where her soul is. I know where my soul is. Lost is a word that I’ve eliminated from my vocabulary, because truly, there are no lost souls when the TRUTH is known. When the truth of our place in Jesus is solidified, our destination is Home.
I reworked my scene in my novel, after I laid to rest the word lost and redefined it to the word relocated. I prayed that the passing scene in my book would reflect that same moment my own Momma ran across her finish line. A race well run, a race I am running, and hope to finish soon. . . or rather, in the perfect timing of the One who is building my house as we speak.
There is so much hope in finding our soul!
About the Author
Jaime Jo Wright is the author of six novels, including Christy Award winner The House on Foster Hill and Carol Award winner The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond. She's also the Publishers Weekly and ECPA bestselling author of two novellas. Jaime lives in Wisconsin with her cat named Foo; her husband, Cap'n Hook; and their littles, Peter Pan and CoCo. To learn more, visit www.jaimewrightbooks.com.
About the Book
Wren Blythe has long enjoyed living in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, helping her father with ministry at a youth camp. But when a little girl in the area goes missing, an all-out search ensues, reviving the decades-old campfire story of Ava Coons, the murderess who is believed to still roam the forest. Joining the search, Wren stumbles upon the Coonses' cabin ruins and a sinister mystery she is determined to unearth.
Did You Know?
Words are powerful. God created the world with His words. What am I creating with my words? What are we teaching our children and grandchildren with our words?
Japanese scientist Masiru Emoto experimented with the way frozen water crystalized. The group of water that he spoke negative words and phrases over produced ugly, cloudy crystals. However, the group of water that he spoke positive words and phrases over formed beautiful, clear crystals.
There was also a study of a group of plants. The plant that heavy metal music was played over died. The plant that classical music was played over thrived.
Both of these studies prove Proverbs 18:21 true: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue. And those who love it will eat its fruit.”
The Lord gave me an idea to help educate children about the importance of words in a fun way. Born was a children’s book trilogy with triplets, Aunt Ida Clare, Aunt Ima Mazing and Aunt Iva Story. With a play on each of their names and unusual object lessons, these aunts creatively inspire children to practice speaking over themselves and others the way God sees them.
-Michele McCarthy, Aunt Ima Mazing
Why I LOVE My Local Christian Bookstore
“A bookstore feels good to my spirit. It invites me to enter into its microcosm of imagination and wisdom. The untold thousands of unique stories, collections of wisdom and author perspectives draw me in and can keep me there for hours, if only I had unlimited hours to linger.”
-Joan C. Benson, His Gift