Saturday, November 19, 2011
God's Purpose in a Sporting Goods Store....Nonna Bannister
There are those times in life when we search out a particular book, and then there are the times when it is as if God puts the book into our hands, Himself. The second method is how I came to purchase "The Secret Holocaust Diaries - The untold story of Nonna Bannister" by Nonna Bannister, Denise George and Carolyn Tomlin; available through Amazon.com via the link provided. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_28?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=the+secret+holocaust+diaries+the+untold+story+of+nonna+bannister&sprefix=The+Secret+Holocaust+Diaries
My husband and I live in Michigan and we love to fish in the lush Upper Peninsula. Our summer trek is an annual event the end of August as the U.P. has usually "warmed up" by then! And so it is that we have begun to include a stop at "Jay's Sporting Goods" shop; just a short hop from the Mackinac Bridge.
What is the likelihood of finding a Christian book in a sporting goods store? But that is exactly what happened. "Jay's" in Gaylord, Michigan offers a wide variety of hunting, fishing, clothing and home items; devoting one very minor section to a rack of Christian books. We've been there so often that its not unusual for us to make a beeline for our favorite sections. He enjoys checking out guns and fish lures, and I tend toward sniffing various candle scents, checking out the Woolrich brand sales rack and "testing" hand creams.
Window shopping in my corner of the store, I made my way to the Christian book rack....My eyes fell upon Nonna's book....a brownish black and grey cover....Nonna's photo of her girlish face...haunting eyes staring out over a lined linen cloth....hair parted....pigtails decorated with bows...The title: "the secret HOLOCAUST DIARIES - The untold story of Nonna Bannister".....
.....I picked it up...looked it over...read the description on the back cover....flipped through some of the pages...and set it back neatly in the rack....Slowly twirling the rack around and perusing the other selections, I came back to Nonna's book....I felt drawn to this book....I read further....
Nonna had written an account of her life through the Holocaust and never revealed her story to her husband or family until much, much later in life. And now after her passing, her story has been revealed for us.
The back cover reads: "The Secret Holocaust Diaries is a haunting eyewitness account of Nonna Lisowskaja Bannister, a remarkable Russian American woman who saw and survived unspeakable evils as a young girl. For half a century she kept her story secret while living a normal American life. She locked all her photos, documents, diaries, and dark memories from World War II in a trunk. Late in life she unlocked the trunk, first for herself, then for her husband, and now for the rest of the world.
Nonna's story is one of suffering, torture, and death - but also of incredible acts of kindness that show the ultimate triumph of faith and love over despair and evil. The Secret Holocaust Diaries is in part a tragedy, yet it's also an unforgettable true story about forgiveness, courage, and hope."
I was hooked. A story of another over comer! I wanted to know more.......
And then "more" happened; more than I had ever anticipated.....Throughout the past 20 years of my life, multiple people have encouraged me to write my story of adoption from Germany...finding my birth mother...and siblings...and the abuse which existed in my adoptive home and how the Lord healed me.
This Fall was no exception....Having connected with other writers through the internet, women who had never met me personally were now encouraging me to write. And God was letting me know that now is the time. "Lord, I will need Your grace and mercy and strength"; for multiple times before I'd sat to write and gotten stuck in the thick sludge of memories and feelings.....How to write and not be overwhelmed?
And then I read Nonna's book....Her courage blazes across each page....Raw courage of survival....God triumphing with His goodness over all the evil which had happened in her life. God's restoration for a past which had been ripped from her tender hands.....She hadn't signed up for this tragedy in her life. Nobody signs up for a tragedy; for it is the result of something which is totally out of your control!
However, God showed Himself strong on her behalf. He gave her His beauty for the ashes. Nonna's past did not determine her future.
I purposed anew that if Nonna Bannister could write her book.....so could I!
Thank you, Nonna Bannister; Thank you to your family for the countless hours you spent organizing, etc; Thank you Denise and Carol; but most of all, Thank You, Lord~
The purpose of this blog is to encourage our walk in Christ; together in Him; for as we develop our relationship with the Lord, we ARE more than conquerors through Christ Jesus! Praise God! My writings are mostly from an experiential standpoint; however sometimes this includes dreams and visions. (Comments are reviewed prior to posting.)