Book Review: Invitation to Tears by Jonalyn Fincher and Aubrie Hills

ITT Cover

As a supporter of Soulation, I was excited to get an advance copy of Jonalyn Fincher’s latest book, Invitation to Tears: A Guide to Grieving Well. Written with thanatologist Aubrie Hills, with a foreword by Dale Fincher, Invitation to Tears uses the framing metaphor of a ship at sea to explore the journey of grief. Each chapter ends with music and movie recommendations to help you along, followed by questions for discussion and/or journaling. Although the authors refer to death, their advice is applicable to any sort of life-changing loss, not only the physical death of a loved one. Along with honest stories about their own personal losses, they discuss how Jesus dealt with grief, and consider Bible verses that are often misapplied in times of personal distress. Invitation to Tears is free of platitudes, instead exhorting the reader that the only healthy way out of grief is through it, and that God can handle your questions and messy feelings.

While my closest friends and family are all (thankfully) alive and well, as a divorced person, I’ve grieved the loss of my marriage. I believe a divorce is worse than a death in some ways, and in the beginning, it was horrible to sit with and work through my feelings instead of ignoring them or self-medicating. But I was determined to grieve well and come out the other side a whole and healthy person. In that sense, Invitation to Tears was very validating and encouraging to me. I nodded along to Jonalyn’s and Aubrie’s words, and many of them are actually things I’ve said myself. I loved their assurances that grief is NOT a logical or linear experience, and not only do we all grieve differently, but we also grieve specific losses differently. Grief is an opportunity to be brave even as we fall apart, to confront our fears and our humanness while applying lots of grace to ourselves and others.

Invitation to Tears is a great resource and comfort for anyone facing the death of a loved one, marriage, child, career, or long-held dream. It would also be a wonderful study for a support group. You can find it on Amazon. In the coming weeks, Jonalyn and Aubrie will be hosting a read-along at the Invitation to Tears home page. If this topic interests you, I recommend checking it out!

About Brenda W.

Christian. Memphian. Reader. Writer. True blue Tiger fan. Lover of shoes, the ocean, adventure, and McAlister’s iced tea.

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3 Responses to Book Review: Invitation to Tears by Jonalyn Fincher and Aubrie Hills

  1. Carol says:

    I’m glad this book was such a help to you! You’re right that grief makes no sense. My dad died when I was a kid, and mostly I’m fine. I miss him, of course, and wish he hadn’t died, but most days, I don’t even think about him in a sad way. But then along will come a day, sometimes because of something I’ve seen or heard, and sometimes out of the blue, when I will MISS him. I still cry occasionally, and will always wonder what kind of person he was and what kind of person I’d be if he’d been around to see me grow up and know my girls.

  2. Pingback: May 2014 Book List | Don't Stop Believing

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