Better to do something imperfectly than to do nothing flawlessly.
- Robert H. Schuller
Finally a gorgeous spring day in the hills and I have a large white dog staring at me demanding to take advantage of it.
So I am afraid I’m going to have to make this quick: She’s got that bored/impatient look on her face, that canine frown we dog owners all know. As an aside, with the weather getting better this is a great time of year to adopt a dog. Check out Petfinder.com to meet that special companion who is meant just for you. You can change an animal’s life…and I’m sure that animal will change yours.
And while you’re at it read the moving and inspiring story of the site’s founder here. Who doesn’t want more love in their life? There’s a pet in need out there eager to give it. They will love you more than you can ever imagine, the closest thing to an earthly angel.
This has been quite a week for me. My book, The Promise of Hope: How True Stories of Hope and Inspiration Saved My Life and How They Can Transform Yours, was released to Guideposts readers and users on Monday (the book will be in stores May 1). As I’ve told you before I didn’t start out to write the book I ended up writing. It was supposed to be about the 9 Keys to Powerful Personal Change backed up by some of the most compelling and unforgettable stories I helped bring to the pages of Guideposts, with some untold backstories thrown in. I wanted to talk about what I had learned from these inspiring people and their amazing experiences, how they had in fact changed my life and deepened my faith, and how you too could learn and grow and develop a closer relationship with God through them.
As you probably know by now, that’s when my wife, Julee, stepped in. She wanted to know if I was going to tell my own story as well. When I hesitated, not wanting to go back to that difficult period of my life, Julee persisted. “Look, Edward,” she said, “I married you because of your story. It will help people if you tell it along with the other stories. And it will help you too. You need to tell your own Guideposts story after years of helping others tell theirs. You owe it to the readers. Don’t be afraid. No one will hate you.”
So I did. But all along I have been terribly apprehensive about how my own story and troubled past would be received. I would wake up at night worrying about it. Would people be shocked? Turned off? Disappointed? Like most human beings I seek approval. Would I risk that approval by revealing things about my life that had been deeply painful and humiliating? Would I be able to go back there, all the way to my childhood, and dredge it all up? Would I survive the process emotionally? I obsessed about it for months leading up to the book’s release. I was afraid readers would turn away from me.
This week, though, has been a tremendous relief, an incredible blessing. So far my fears, as so many fears are, were phantoms. Your response has been unbelievably kind and understanding. I feel foolish for even doubting it. People are saying that the book helped them in their own challenges, and that is why I wrote it. So thank you all for being so positive and supportive. It means everything to me.
Now for my new dilemma: Guideposts is hosting a short reading and launch event next week for the book, then sending me off a signing tour around the country, where I will read from The Promise of Hope. Naturally I am at a loss as to what short passage to draw from, a three- to five-minute selection for next week, maybe something a bit longer for the bookstores. So for those of you who have read or even started The Promise of Hope…any ideas? Did you have a favorite part? What would you want me to read? I could really use your help. Post below or go to edwardgrinnan.com. If you help me solve my problem, I’ll send you a signed copy of The Promise of Hope along with a book of my devotionals in appreciation.
Meanwhile, somebody wants to go for a hike.
Edward Grinnan is Editor-in-Chief and Vice President of Guideposts Publications. Edward lives in New York City with two blondes—his wife, Julee, and Golden Retriever, Millie, who has been featured in his blog and popular videos. Edward loves cycling, hiking with Millie at his house in the Berkshire Hills and Wolverines that hail from Michigan.
If you need a little boost of inspiration, pick up a copy of Edward's book The Promise of Hope: How True Stories of Hope and Inspiration Saved My Life and How They Can Transform Yours.