I’ve been waiting on a book from Lynn.
You know when someone is different. Lynn Severance is different.
Sometimes a painful event enters our lives. It moves on. We move on.
But other times, the pain comes to sit.
Pain came to sit with Lynn.
“Am I spending my life in spacious places? My view can seem confining as others rush by me to involvements in many places. Does activity always mean that productivity follows? It seems that as I commit each day to the Lord, He is the one who defines what is productive for me.”
– Lynn Severance
I started reading her words around 2008/2009 when we both begin writing devotionals for Rest Ministries about living with chronic illness.
Her words were always a little deeper, more thought-filled, always faith-filled.
As a thriving elementary school teacher, Lynn awoke one morning in 1983 with a full-fledged vertigo attack.
The dizziness came to stay.
After experiencing additional challenges, including aggressive breast cancer, she eventually was forced to retired from a career she loved due to vestibular dysfunction. Her life was forever changed.
Physical pain not only hurts our bodies, it also hurts out hearts, our activities, and, at times, our faith.
But out of these challenges, learning “to live in a body that took an unexpected turn,” Lynn and God birthed this book, Seeking the Light of God’s Comforter: When Challenges Dim Our View.
It is a collection of 60 devotionals and accompanying photographs that bear reflection to God’s faithfulness, goodness, and presence in the midst of hardships.
Lynn doesn’t dismiss our pain through her writings. But she strips away its edge.
In Section One, she writes,
“The writings of this section of the book deal with harsh realities, but the qualities of springtime dominate in their messages. These are gifts God wants to bring to us if we can open our hearts to receive them. Our faith, giving reception to them, is what we return to the Giver.”
Through her meditations on God’s love, truth, and grace, we look to God not just for answers and changed circumstances (they may or may not come), but for relationship and peace.
Accepting the reality of our situation instead of denying it helps us increase our faith in the one who does understand the big picture. And who never leaves us in the midst of it.
“I choose to recognize both [trials and beautiful moments]. I desire to dwell in the buoyancy of your light that lifts me above a world that can clamor, wanting to pull me down. Someday I will understand reasons for many of my life events during these past decades. I am in no rush. Delivery to my eternal home will come and all things will be made clear.”
The four sections of devotionals are:
- Section One: Hope—Faith—Redemption—Love—Praise
- Section Two: Comfort—Goodness—Peace—Kindness—Flexibility
- Section Three: Gratitude—Trust—Faithfulness—Abundance—Surrender
- Section Four: Courage—Perseverance—Strength—Compassion—Incarnation
Along with each devotional, we also receive a related scripture, a prayer, and a beautiful color photo from Lynn’s collection. The back of the book details the origin of the pictures, an extensive recommended reading list of encouragement from Lynn’s bookshelves, and questions for personal reflection or group discussion.
Lynn is real. She doesn’t sugarcoat the painful things, but she doesn’t leave you wallowing in them either. She presses on and through.
I see light shining through the pain.
I hear God’s wisdom through Lynn.
His truths through her words are a gift to us all.
* * *
Do you live with a chronic illness or pain? What helps you press on? Please share in the comments.
- To purchase Lynn’s book:
The best price for the paperback is currently at Redemption Press, where you can also get a free PDF now of the first Section, including photographs.
You can buy the Kindle version at Amazon.
- Follow Lynn:
Her journey from writing to publishing is on her Facebook page. Read Lynn’s blog, “Let All Creation Sing”.
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