“She is Mine” A War Orphan’s Incredible Journey of Survival. The Story of my Mentor, Stephanie Fast.
I am honored today to share about a book that is absolutely dear to my heart. Before I talk bout the book (and giveaway!) I am taking a minute to share about the amazing author of the book, and the story of our friendship. (hop to the bottom to get to the review and giveaway!)
It was seventeen years ago this month that I first met Stephanie Fast. I was at a women’s retreat in beautiful Cannon Beach, Oregon. Just a year into my marriage, I was struggling to figure things out, and wrestling with issues of insecurity and identity. I had carpooled out to the retreat with a small group of good friends whom I had grown close to over the past year. Each of the women were just a couple of years older than me, and each of them had two young children, before I had any. I knew they had wisdom and experience that I needed, and they graciously loved me like a sister.
After dinner on the first night of our retreat, our speaker was introduced. Stephanie stepped onto the small speaking stage and began to share her story: her story of being born in post-war Korea, the daughter of a Korean woman, and an American military man; her story of being abandoned at age four at a train station by her own mother, because of the terrible shame her mother carried for having a mixed blood child. The years that followed that abandonment were nothing short of a nightmare: deep loneliness and fear, near-starvation, disease, and abuse.
Yet somehow, woven throughout her testimony, Stephanie spoke the most beautiful message of destiny. She knew that she had never been alone. And she reminded us that whatever we faced, we also were called to a greater destiny.
It was then that I began to find answers to even my own (very first-world) issues of insecurity and identity. I wanted what this woman had.
I looked over at my friends, and I knew we all felt the same way: we loved Stephanie. Loved her heart. Loved her story. Loved her spirit. And later that night we conspired together to find out how we could get some time alone with her.
We were more than surprised to find out that Stephanie had not flown in from some distant city, but lived not far from all of us, just outside of Portland. Over lunch on the final morning of our retreat, we got up the nerve to ask if she would be so kind as to have coffee with the four of us girls. She said yes.
The first coffee meeting was at a local coffee shop, and when our overwhelmed hearts broke open and began spilling tears on the coffee shop table, Stephanie suggested we meet again, in her living room.
We met the next week, and the following. It wasn’t long before the five of us were a family. We met weekly, if not more, and our families often gathered for celebrations or holidays. Stephanie’s teenage boys got used to us girls and our babies hanging out in their living room, and her husband Darryl was more than gracious to share his wife with us. Stephanie’s wisdom, grace, and humor were just the refreshment that we all needed each time we met.
When we could, us girls would travel with Stephanie to retreats where she would speak. Her story reached women in every season of life. It seemed that everyone felt connected to Stephanie’s story. (And I loved it when Stephanie would introduce the four of us girls–all blondes, in our late twenties to early thirties–as her “daughters.” The audience would study us girls to determine if this could be true.)
That season in my life, which led up to my move to Hawaii, is almost surreal as I look back. The relationships that were forged, and the mentoring that I received, both from Stephanie and the other girls, shaped much of who I am today. Much of what I share on this blog goes back to conversations, prayers, and studies I did during those years.
And now, with that very long introduction, it is with tears of joy that I get to share with you Stephanie’s long-awaited book: “She is Mine.”
Stephanie’s testimony has been one of the most requested of all time on Focus on the Family Radio Show. People who have heard her speak have been waiting years for her to write her story. Plenty of people have offered to write the story for her. She never felt it was the time before.
But the time has now come. And it is absolutely worth the wait.
After receiving a copy of “She is Mine” last week, I sat down late at night to read “just the first chapter.” Hours passed and I could not put the book down. I was blown away by how well Stephanie was able to put her story into writing. I found myself loving this little girl deeply…I stood with her when she was four and alone at a railway station. I felt her shiver when she was cold and so afraid. I cried tears as she sat through long nights calling out for her mommy. I felt sick when she picked leeches off of her body, and even sicker when her desperate hunger led her to try eating one. I saw my own boys’ faces in this lost and hurting girl. When her life was near the end I found myself aching for her to be rescued. I may have heard her story many times, but this book gripped me like it was the very first time.
Last week on the plane ride home from Oregon, I suggested Dave read the first chapter of the book. He did. And then he kept reading and reading until he finished the entire book.
YES! THAT. GOOD.
I continue to think about Stephanie’s story, and to even dream about that little girl. Stephanie’s story has moved me to pray more for the 143 million+ orphans around the world, and how we might be able to help.
I hope you will all hurry over to Amazon and order a copy of “She is Mine” for yourself and all of your friends now! (I think they are on a bit of a back-order, but when I placed an order yesterday there was only a one-week delay!)
Also check out Stephanie’s website, where you can read the first two chapters of the book. You can also see photographs of Stephanie as a child, and a lot of other information about Stephanie, and orphans worldwide.
And for some FUN NEWS!
Stephanie has offered to send FIVE signed copies of her book to my blog readers!
To enter to win, please leave a comment sharing one person whose presence in your life has helped shape and form you into who you are today….OR you can share if you have a heart for orphans…Or really anything else that you want to say! 🙂 We’ll be choosing randomly on Sunday night (11/16) and I’ll announce winners in my next post! Check back to see if you won!
Please do share this post if you think your friends would enjoy hearing about this book! (social media buttons are below!)
Definitely my mother. Raising 8 children in communist Romania wasn’t easy for her and my dad. Her faith to the Lord, constant sacrifice, obedience to the Word, investing in each of us like we were the only child- makes her my hero. Faith into action- that’s what her life was/is about.
I was also an orphan born to a Korean mother and US military father. In an effort to save me from some of the horrors I’m sure Stephanie faced, she left me on the doorstep of an orphanage. Adoption was not previously popular in Korean culture and the chances of a mixed child being adopted were even slimmer. I was blessed to be adopted by a couple stationed with the Army when I was just a couple of months old. Now, as a member of the Air Force, I return to Korea annually and volunteer at the same orphanage I was adopted from. They have never been able to find my birth mother but for me, it’s more important to give back to the organization that helped me. I love that adoption has become more popular and it feels indescribably fulfilling to be a part of these children’s chances for a better future.
Without a doubt my Aunt is the one person in my life who helped shape me into the person I am today.
My friend Amy has been a spiritual “mom” to me. She is a great mentor and friend!
My grandparents (one from each side) have been who has really had a presence in my life! I can’t imagine being the person I am today without either of them!
My daughter Monica. She has the heart of a servant. I love her so much! Dad
Awww….Love you, Dad!! See you tomorrow! XO
My mom. She has always been a great example on how to be a loving, faithful and devoted mother, wife, sister and friend. She is patient and kind and works very hard doing well at all she does. Love her!!
My maternal grandma has made such a huge impact on my life. She is no longer with me but taught me what grace, unconditional love and perseverance truly is. I loved hearing her stories of when she was little, how her family struggled as immigrants and how she found the simple things in life beautiful. I miss her every day!!!!
My great grandmother has helped me be who I am. She was such a grace filled woman and she sacrificed herself to others. She only married one man and even after he passed she never looked for another man, she said God filled that place. I told myself growing up O was going to be with just one man and I have been with my H.S sweetheart now for 11 years! I give myself and do for others just like she did and pray like her.
My father, Coit Tucker, is the person who molded me into “Me.” My parents split when I was 12, and I really didn’t spend much time with my mom after that. I wanted to stay and “take care” of my daddy. He worked full time, cooked and grocery shopped and raised my brother and me. Yes, my poor daddy even bought me my first box of TAMPONS! He didn’t blink and eye. He just did what he had to do to raise his kids. He took me to church and boasted of my 16 years of perfect attendance in Sunday school. He was a deacon in a very southern baptist church until he was “demoted” because a divorced man cannot serve as deacon. He is my rock, my world, and my first “love”. He is the most important presence in my life…
As an adoptive parent this really speaks to me. It was quite a journey for us to get our daughter and I am hoping she will feel empowered by this experience someday. I am looking forward to getting Stephanie’s book and reading her story!
Sara Lee – not the famous baker though 🙂 Sara Lee is the mother of my best childhood friend. At a young age, Sara Lee is the one that started taking me to church with her family and was always such an amazing example of love, faith, hard work, dedication, compassion, right vs wrong and so on. My life was completely shaped by her and I am ever so thankful that she taught me these things and had such a positive impact on my life. <3
My mom and my foster mom. Both. I would not be who I am today without them.
My girlfriend Amber has provided so much support and guidance through my first (almost) 2 years of Motherhood. I’m blessed to have her in my life.
Oooohh! I would love to read this book. Our family had the great privilege of bringing 2 girls into our family through adoption. Now, we live in Africa and work with orphans and widows in Malawi. Orphan care is my passion and I would love to read Stephanie’s story!
One person who has had a profoundly impacting presence In my life and has definitely shaped who I am today is my best friend Melissa. Her honesty, vulnerability and love for Jesus has inspired, stretched and challenged who I am as well as encouraged me to grow into deeper understanding of who God has made me to be. I am blessed to have received show much of God’s love through her.
My mother has been my inspiration! She makes me want to be a better person.
Thank you for sharing your story.
I can’t really say that I’ve had a tough life like that. Some people have been through so much, that all the small problems in life that would bother most, really don’t stop them from living life fully. I look up to those people. They don’t give up.
I love Stephanie! I met her around the time you did, Monica. I then got to hear her story as she sat in my family room in South Korea, where we were living at the time. I love her story because it continually points to our Great God and his mercy and love for us.
I can’t remember a time in my life that I didn’t feel burdened to care for the homeless and fatherless. God has been so gracious to me, and in losing my mom at 14 years old, He has sewn in a handful of women into my life at different seasons, in different parts of the world.
I would say my first real mentor was you! God used you, Monica, to show me how to walk, breathe, eat and sleep Jesus. Your life has always been in pursuit of God. He used you to show me what His word, living and active in someones life looks like! It was only a few sweet years I was able to do life with you side by side, but heaven awaits!
I’ve had the privilege to live in 4 different countries. God is moving in so many ways all over His creation!
Please don’t send me a copy of the book. Where I’m living now they’d most likely burn it. 🙂
Love you Mon~
I couldn’t narrow it down to one. So many people in my life have shaped me and inspired me. My family has been wonderfully blessed by adoption. So, that’s my answer on both fronts. 🙂
My husband and I have adopted, and our family blossomed from 3 to 5 kids. I am constantly encouraged by my sister-in-law, who so generously shares about her experiences in adoption (they went from 4 to 8!). She is such an encouragement to me!
my youth pastor’s wife had a HUGE impact on my life. she shared just enough of her past to let us know that you can have an imperfect past and God will always forgive you. she is one of the women/people that helped guide me to knowing my calling as a pastor.
beautiful story. I cannot wait to read it.
My grandmother was a guiding hand in my life and I miss her terribly. As a mother of multiracial children, I am moved to read this story and share it with loved ones. How far we have come. Today, my kids are just kids, and , not too long ago, this remarkable lady was shunned all because of having one white and one Asian parent.
My Dad inspired me to become the independent , honest, driven, God- loving woman that I am today. Thank goodness for him because I do not speak to my Mom!
Mentors: my Dad and my sixth grade teacher 🙂
As a single young mother of two boys that had just returned to college, I had a professor that helped me earn the confidence I have today. Professor R. helped me see I was smart, talented and had much to offer. I will forever be grateful.
Shelly was my family’s “cleaning lady” 50 years ago before I was born. She told my mom, then pregnant with me, that I would be her baby. Being a large woman, she carried me around on a pillow as a newborn. I continued to feel extremely close to her all through my young childhood spending as much time as possible with her. My mom’s friends asked where I got that Southern accent. It was Shelly’s African American accent! She taught me the alphabet at a very young age, but that was nothing compared to the love, compassion and all the wisdom she shared with me. Unfortunately, she passed away when I was just a young teenager. I’ve always missed her dearly. I regret not having been more mature and aware enough to ask her more about her personal upbringing and history. How educational that would have been! I have always tried to continue to be conscientious, kind, and equally accepting of African American’s specifically and all minorities in general. I wish everyone could have that unconditional love of a “Shelly!”
Today, I find this especially poignant as we in St. Louis are dealing with issues referring to the incident in Ferguson. A most complex and heart-wrenching situation, I continue to pray for respect, patience, peace and hope for our entire community…and the whole world.
Love one another… Do unto others…
beautiful, Jeannie! Really, that was such an awesome story. Our family watched The Help last summer, and all of the boys and I often say to our little (four year-old) Levi, “You IS smart, You is Kind…You is important!” 🙂 These influences in our young lives are so very valuable. Much aloha!
Ah, “The Help.” Loved both the book and the movie!
We too repeated that now-famous quote. 🙂
Jesus has broken our hearts for orphans. We have been waiting to be matched w our daughter in China for a year now. Trusting Jesus and would LOVE to read this wonderful book!
My grandmother, Genevieve amazing, kind, loving woman full of wisdom who loved all she met. Full of grace and quick smiles to greet the world.
oh goodness. This book – her story sounds amazing. My dear husband of 13 years (together 16) was definitely chosen by God for me. He has made such an impact in my life. Thank you for this opportunity and sharing you friends story.
Wow… I love to hear about what God has done even in the hardest situations.
Wow, what an amazing story and friendship you share with Stephanie! Should we all be so blessed to have a mentor like you’ve had in her. It’s kind of sad for me to admit that in my adult life, I haven’t really had that opportunity of being mentored and it’s something I really desire. Obviously, my parents have influenced and shaped me into the woman I am today and for that, I am very thankful! I can’t wait to buy this book and read the rest of Stephanie’s story.
I’ve wondered if God would lead us to adopt at some point. I know I have a heart for it and so overwhelmed by the need.
My Aunt Bettye. She set a wonderful example of how to be a strong, independent but interdependent woman throughout her life, and in her final battle with breast cancer, she showed me how to face death, with dignity, courage and grace.
Oh this looks like an amazing book to read!!! Love the story how you met as well. Well, just this last week started following a couple ( Kim & John) from my town here that have been working in Uganda for several years. I followed via posts off and on that friends would comment on and just decided to friend request and follow their path. In just this short week I have been Blessed by having my eyes opened on so many thing’s that I would usually fret about to putting in to perspective what really is important. Check out the page to get a glimpse of their journey. https://www.facebook.com/kimberly.r.calhoun?fref=ts
I grew up in a family that sent money for an orphan from Korea. His name was YooShooKun…we lost touch with him when he turned 18 and was out of the system. But seeing his photo everyday hanging on the wall seared into me a deep love and care for orphans…thank you for writing this book.
I can’t wait to read this book. I will buy it even if I don’t win!
I would have to share that my friend and neighbor Malini has shaped my life with regard to orphans. Malini came to my friends Mark and Beth as a 3 year old from Bangalore. Her bravery and love of life captured me immediately. She is now a beautiful 14 year old who has changed her family for the better. I love that crazy girl!
I’ve been blessed with more than a few wonderful Christian mentors of all ages in my life. God gives us who we need when we need them if we will only open our eyes. His help and wisdom comes from the most amazing places and people!
my heart has recently broke open wide for orphans – i recently made the decision to take my first ever missions trip to haiti to work with an orphanage. i know that my heart will be broken many times over on this trip, but also feel that maybe it needs to be broken – so i can return with a renewed spirit and perspective on my daily world. it’s amazing how much love i already feel for this place i’ve never been and these people (children) i’ve never met!
The child we adopted 30 years ago teaches me to this day about gratitude, positivity, and a focus of non judgment. A successful wedding photographer and busy wife, Melissa still takes time to voluntarily mentor high school girls and her own peers.
Love your blog.
Well thank you So much Mary! 🙂 Sending aloha your way–
I think it is a blessing and a curse that I cant thing of any one specific most influencial person. There are so many people who have their fingerprints in my life. Including you Monica, I never wanted to go to Hawaii until I started reading your blog and well we know what happened there.
My childhood best friend, Erin, was my saving grace. We met in the 7th grade and were instantly friends. She taught me how to be my own person, how to love myself, how to laugh and how to let God’s love into my life. I could tell her anything and everything and she never once judged me for my past or my mistakes. The summer before our Junior year in high school we were in a car accident and she was killed. Even though 23 years have passed since that awful day, I have never met anyone quite like her. I can still see her smile and hear her laugh and my memories of her still teach me little lessons. I am truly blessed to have known her…even if only for a little while.
I really enjoy your blog. I’ve been reading them for a while, but have never commented on anything. You have made me smile, laugh out loud and brought tears to my eyes several times…when I needed it most! Thank you! Its funny how God works! 🙂
Over the past 2 years, I have had this very thought about people shaping our lives! I had the awakening that certain individuals have been placed in my life that have brought me where I am today. It is difficult to name just one person who has shaped me; ultimately it is God. He has blessed me with people I like to think of as ‘angels’ who have shaped my life. I am a single mom with 3 awesome kids and although the struggle of raising them has brought me to tears at times, there is nothing more rewarding than witnessing any of my children make good choices and decisions, help others, behave politely and be grateful for what they have. People we have crossed paths with have aided in our survival and sustenance. Because I can’t afford to buy a home, I have been renting homes for the past 13 years. Quite often it’s a home on the market that we ultimately have to move out of. Along the way God has placed people in my life that have supplied comfortable, and often more than adequate homes for me to rent. I believe it helps to trust and have faith; when times are tough and I am calm enough to “give it to God”, He always blesses me. I know I am where I am today because of the people God has placed in my path that have shaped me. The lesson I’ve learned is that through Him, in some small way, I can do the same for others. The warmest feeling is not in receiving love or help or gifts from another, but from giving. This is what I strive to teach my children. Sure, I want them to excel in school, be successful and follow their dreams, but hearing from teachers, coaches and leaders in their lives that they behave well and are good examples to others speaks volumes to me. I was immediately touched to read this post about Stephanie, and I would be honored to read her book. I will purchase it, regardless if I’m chosen as a ‘winner’ and share it when I’m finished.
One of my sweetest friends for over 20 years always felt God tugging her to adopt. Just as my fourth child, a daughter was turning two years old she adopted her daughter from China. Samantha had been abandoned on the side of the road around 6 months old and then lived in an orphanage until she was adopted at two years old. They were not sure of her actual birthday so they guessed it to as close as they could which was 4 days later than my Kasey’s birthday. Kasey had a fairly severe speech delay and Samantha did not speak yet for obvious reasons. This delay brought them together as well as their close age. Immediately Kasey and Samantha became the best of friends. To this day they are both ten years old and totally and completely engaged with each other. They are both the kindest and most loving souls you would ever meet. They both serve at church in their own ways each Sunday because I believe their hearts are completely full from Christ’s unconditional love which these two felt in their difficult times. So grateful for all stories of grace, love and the power of Christ to heal. Cannot wait to read this inspiring book. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for sharing. I am eager to read this!
I would have to say my husband. He led me back to church and has been at my side all these years. We just recently lost our baby boy, stillborn, and he has been my rock and my guide.
Wow … It’s been a long time since I’ve “heard” about a book that makes me think that I absolutely MUST read it.
What you wrote about the “season of your life” hit home for me too. It’s only now that I am realizing all of the different “seasons” I’ve already lived, and am very thankful for the one I am blessed with now. Which made me realize that (as cliche as it may be…too bad) my mom is really the one who helped shape me.
It wasn’t until recently (the last 2-ish years) that I was able to start to understand pieces of my childhood–some very painful for me and even more painful for her–and the reasons behind all of the “why’s” that I could never ask out loud. I am grateful if I can capture even 1/10th of the grace, composure, determination, and compassion with which she has carried out every single day. And I use that to help me make my choices and drive my actions today.
Oh wow, this book sounds absolutely amazing! I have such a heart for fostering-to-adopt an older child and I’ll definitely be buying this book (and if I win, giving a copy to a friend!).
Sounds amazing and would love to read her story- please enter me in the drawing!
My 91 year old grandma has been one if the most influential people in my life. She grew up in the depression with next to nothing and had a lot of challenging experiences as a child and young adult. She is the most generous and kind person I know. She always has the right words to say and is so positive, regardless of the circumstances. She always encourages me to keep my head up when life throws me lemons and remember that better things are on the horizon.
I’ve had the pleasure of knowing my best friend since we were 7. Last week I got to be a bridesmaid in her wedding and it reminded me of how much our relationship shaped me over the years. From making skits and having sleepovers, to late night talks about boys and later theology, I know I would not be who I am today without her.
My dance instructor in high school. She was tough and sometimes I really disliked her, but throughout my high school years she taught us respect, hard work, dedication, follow through. I’ve been out of school for almost 30 years and I still take her lessons with me. I saw her a few years ago and she’d adopted a little boy not too long after I graduated. Having the experience of being a mom she saw so much through a new perspective and apologized to us girls for how hard she was on us, but tough love in the younger years makes for responsible, respectful adults.
Groups of women carrying the weight of the world. There are 8 of us. One for every spot at K’s table. Nice even number. We laugh, we cry, we rejoice, sing funny songs, laugh some more and worship our Lord! We eat too! What life stories we bring. We have a foster mom of many, a pastors wife, a counselor, a nursing mom who doesn’t sleep, an adulterer, a wife of a cancer pt, a healer, and one that is the glue that brings us all together. We love the orphans of the world and pray fervently for them. This book sounds like our next to read!
You’ve written a beautiful introduction your friend – I’m already amazed by her strength, grace, and dignity. I love that she shares she was never alone – always with her destiny, this higher power that created us in love, for love, with intention. We all have our purpose – and you both inspire other women!
My friend Natalie has been such an inspiration to me. She is a wonderful mom and has helped me through all of the new mom trials and other relationships in my life.
What a powerful story! Thank you for sharing. My inspiration is my nanny, Annette. She is my rock, my lighthouse in the storm. She is literally an angel on earth. Sometimes I feel she was sent specifically for me, to guide me and teach me all the best parts of life.
Thank you so much for sharing your life through your blog. As the parent of 2 boys, your updates are usually quite timely.
My friend Tereasa came into my life when my first son was a baby when I joined her yoga class. I practiced with her for 3 years before she closed up shop and decided to pursue a different avenue in life. During that time, our friendship grew, and, being 10 years older, she offered me advice and perspective when life was particularly rough. She helped me shape my dreams and supported my work as a cultural manager with enthusiasm always, even when I was feeling uninspired. Today, our friendship remains a constant even though I don’t see her as much as I would like to. She is like a warm blanket that envelopes my being when we are together or we talk over the phone. Thank you for letting me share.
I was working at a local chiropractic office as a receptionist. Unsure what my next steps were. I had just graduated with my degree and didn’t know what my next path in life was supposed to be. A retired nun came in to be treated. She always stayed and chatted with me. Out of the blue one day she told me I would make an excellent teacher. My degree had nothing to do with teaching, but my gut told me she was right. Twelve years later, I’m still teaching third grade and I absolutely love it!
I was adopted when I was 3 days old and God placed me in an amazing Christian family. I have a heart for orphans and all children trying to find their place in the world.
Hard to pinpoint one, as so many amazing people have left a positive imprint upon me & shaped me in one one way or another. At different times in my life, (20
s, 30’s and now about to enter my 40’s), I’ve found myself seeking out the inspiration and comfort in the words of a wise and graceful woman, Anne Morrow Lindbergh. I wish I could have had the chats with her that you had with your Stephanie.
‘Only love can be divided endlessly and still not diminish.” – Anne Morrow Lindbergh
A wonderful lady named Helen came into my life when I was 15. I had a mother, but she was very distant. Helen helped me through the teenage years, and taught me about fashion, cooking, cleaning – and most importantly, took me to church. She was in my life until my early twenties. I will be forever grateful for her.
Side note: I found your blog through something posted on Pinterest and have enjoyed reading it…thank you!
What a blessing Helen must have been at that crucial age! I love that. So glad that Pinterest led you to my site and I hope you’ll stick around and make yourself at home! 🙂 Aloha-
My step mom Marsha Fennell
I have guided my life in the direction Sylvia lived hers. “What would she do?”
My mom, without a doubt. but there have been other women along the way too.
I have a two part answer. The first is I’d like to request a copy for Rhonda Hasting Wicks. She truly has a heart for orphans. She travels to an orphanage in Honduras every 4-6 weeks, taking various groups to help build shelters, bring food and gifts, and spread God’s word. This past month she was able to bring a medical missionary team for the first time. She has claimed these orphans as her own and while she never asks for recognition, I think she would be honored to receive it.
Second is my own request for a copy. My mom is the person who shaped me. She is the strongest woman I know. She came to live in the United States from Germany as a teenager when her widowed mother could no longer afford to feed her. She came to live with strangers in Chicago in the 1950’s when all she knew was that it was the land of “gangsters”. Her new family would not let her speak German and she did not know English so she had to learn quickly. She made a great life for herself and our family. She taught us to be thrifty and to be independent but to also enjoy life. She had surgery yesterday for breast cancer but she isn’t afraid. She said nothing else has brought her down, this won’t either. I’m grateful to have her in my life.
My grandmother who always made me feel I was the only person in the world that mattered to her. She taught me how to completely engage with the person I am with. I can only hope I honor her in my relationships.
My husband, of almost seven years has been so influential in helping me find ‘me’. The way he loves, encourages and challenges me has been nothing short of a God-send.
My great-grandmother was a huge inspiration for me. Even when she was 99 she was so poised and calm, such an amazing person to grow up with.
love these kind of stories! Can’t wait to read this book!
My nonna immigrated to the us after WWII from Italy. I loved her stories about mousilini & the things they overcame. Imagine coming to a country with 4 kids with nothing…. She recently passed away at 90. I miss her optimism & resilience every day!
I have two! My 2 sons – they have taught me love, patience, worry, joy and so much more. I can never imagine being ashamed of them – my heart aches for Stephanie and all orphans – everyone deserves love. Stephanie’s book is definately going to be on my must read list. Thank you for sharing her story with us.
Thanks for sharing, this definitely sounds like a book I would love to read! Someone who influencedy life, my grandmother. She grew up in a very different time – raised a family of 5 children on her own with grace and unconditional love but most of all her patience is what I try to remember. She has been gone from us now for 16 years but there isn’t a day that goes by that she is not in my heart and in my thoughts… She inspires me to be a better person every day
Hi Monica, Wow, well this sounds like an incredible book. I have a huge heart for orphans because my oldest brother was also a Korean orphan until my parents adopted him. He has overcome so many obstacles and so much pain. But he too was never alone. God was always with him. Now he has his Masters in Education and has been teaching for years. He would give the shirt off his back for the least of these and has shaped my life more than words could ever describe. Partly due to his story, I work with orphans and little girls at risk of being sex trafficked in Bogota, Colombia. May every little orphan come to know the depths of the Love of the Father.
my grandmother – bless you gran, as you watch me from heaven – with plenty of hardships and sadness growing up, she taught me about staying positive, always looking for the light, and to have an unwavering faith. she was an incredible woman who believed in me.
one person that has shaped me is my father. I can totally identify with this story. My dad was in the Air Force stationed in S Korea when he met my mother. She was shunned by her family when they found out. They got married in secret. All the while my dad sold whatever he had to help my mothers family (some of which being his camera equipment as he was an avid photographer). In 1977 he retired and we moved to the U.S. Me at 3, my brother was 2, and my sister was 5 (but worked as a civil servant for the Air Force). My mom didn’t speak English or very,little. My father was the one who cooked and cleaned for us, taught my mother how to cook American food, took all us kids to doctors appointments. He is where I got my patience, my compassion, my kindness, my love of books and my love of photography. They are still married, and my mothers family ,in time, grew to love my father.
absolutely beautiful!! Thank you for sharing that story. 🙂
The person that has had the deepest impact on my life is my best friend Teri. God just plopped her down into my life. She was instrumental in leading me to Christ and has in many ways helped me become the wife and mother I am today. She has seen parts of my heart no one else would be allowed to see. I can always go to get for prayer, scripture and a great cuppa coffee!
What a powerful introduction for an amazing lady. A friend named Crystal came into my life early in my marriage and career. She showed me that you could have faith and be who you are in the workplace. She really affected my life for the short time God ushered her in. She encouraged me to be the same person at work, at home and at church. That was pretty big for me in my early 20s. I thank her.
Wow~As a Korean/American daughter, wife, and mother of three…feeling a nudge from God to read this inspirational Story!
I was adopted at birth and have struggled with my identity through out my life because I never felt like I fit in. When I was 18 my parents contacted my birth mother so I could meet her and I got a glimpse of what my life could have been. I saw how God worked in my life even before I was born and kept me from having to go through the kind of life that I would have if she had not given me up for adoption. I now have 3 boys of my own and I have always wanted to adopt an older child, God willing my husband and I will be able to someday.
A local priest that I have come to love, Fr. Jorge. His frienship and guidance has been an absolute blessing.
Her name is Memrey, I met her in Hawaii when my kids were very young. god sent her to me at the perfect time, as only He can do.