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Book Signing: Grief – The Unwanted Journey

Book Signing and Presentation- Nov 10th and 17th

Special to the Tribune

About the book: Grief – The Unwanted Journey, by Janet Johnson.
Grief is no stranger in life. Sometimes it strikes unexpectedly, as in the death of a child or through an accident. At other times, though expected due to age or long-term illness, it still comes bringing with it a multitude of emotions.

Janet’s reflections on events that brought grief into her life and the lives of others help the reader understand there are similar emotions we all face, yet no one grieves the same.

Through these reflections, readers are encouraged to journey from hurt and pain to find God’s inner joy and peace, recognizing the ability to grieve is a gift given by God to help us heal. Janet’s reflections will help readers to
• Find God even in the most tragic situation
• Be encouraged to help recognize emotions such as anger, depression and hopelessness as a part of grief
• Find a scripture that connects with feelings or emotions being felt during a specific season of grief
• Realize God longs for us to find peace and hope beyond our loss – and it is possible
• Grief is a journey that, for most, does not completely end. It can, however, become a source of strength, new hope and new possibilities as we live out our future in ways that honor our precious memories.

About the Author: Janet Johnson is a pastor, mentor in spiritual formation, speaker, author and free-lance writer whose passion is helping others draw closer to God in all of life’s situations.

She finds joy in the “little things” of life and knows it is God’s love that has sustained her on her life’s journey.

Formational in her own growing deeper in love with God, was her journey in grief. In addition to the loss of her parents and several very close friends, Janet and her husband Richard lost a son in a car accident, Janet’s brother was murdered, and Richard’s brother committed suicide.

Accompanying the pain and grief that these tragedies brought, Janet found God’s unending love permeating each situation bringing healing and inner peace.

She and her husband Richard (a 30-year veteran of the Air Force), along with their four children, experienced living in many areas due to frequent military moves.

Each move brought excitement and new adventures, including new friends, but also brought the pain and loss that accompanied leaving friends and family behind. Through the many transitions, Janet leaned on God as her strength and comfort. Her life passage of scripture is from Nehemiah 6:8, “The joy of the Lord is my strength.”

Janet has BA, MSW and MDiv degrees in addition to the completion of the Academy of Spiritual Formation, the Pastors of Excellence Program and the Methodist School of Supernatural Ministry.

She is on the Board of the Blue Ridge Walk to Emmaus and is on the Advisory Council for Aldersgate Renewal Ministries as well as an associate member of the Order of St. Luke healing ministry.

She worked as a medical social worker, psychologist’s assistant, home-school coordinator and teacher before God called her into full time ministry in 1996.

Now retired, her focus is to help others draw strength from God and find joy in God’s love, especially in the area of grief.

Why I Wrote The Book
With so much tragedy in the world, the loss we feel seems to increase daily. As I have counseled people, my heart has been touched by how deeply we hide our emotions and how the grief we feel affects our daily lives.

Moved by how much God desires each of us to experience his ever-present love and comfort amid our daily struggles, I began writing reflections on my own times of deep pain and unexpected tragedies.

The purpose of this book is to help readers know healing is possible and cherishing memories of what was can be accompanied with a new normal and ultimately a positive outlook where our stories encourage others to see new possibilities with hope and a future.

The book is divided into the common stages of grief but may be read in any order as a devotional or daily support according to whatever emotion the reader may experience on a particular day. Scripture accompanies each reflection helping the reader to trust God amid his/her journey through grief.

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 10:30, North Asheville Public Library

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1:00, Weaverville Public Library

PRESENTATION:  Navigating through Grief During The Holidays
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 11:00, North Asheville Public Library
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1:30, Weaverville Public Library

Topics to be discussed will include:
-Recognizing the different stages of grieving.
-Surviving the pain of loss.
-The where was/is God question.
-Ways to remember your loved one that honors their memory and brings healing to self.

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