On the night of November 5, 2006, the Barrick family was driving home from church when their van was struck by a drunk driver. Fifteen-year-old Jen suffered multiple skull fractures and severe brain trauma and was not expected to survive the night. But against all odds, she did. After lingering in a coma for five weeks, Jen opened her eyes and began praying and praising God. She didn't remember her middle name, recognize her parents, or recall that she had a little brother—but she remembered Jesus and every word to every praise song and Scripture she had hidden in her heart before the accident. As any loving mother would, Jen's mother Linda wanted God to heal Jen--make her like she was before. Normal. But a loving God had something else in mind--instead of making her normal, God is making Jennifer--and the whole Barrick family--extraordinary, miraculous. Miracle for Jen is the remarkable true story of a family who overcame tragedy and learned to trust God's plan for their lives in a whole new way.
My Thoughts and Review:
Wow...what an amazing testimony of God's faithfulness, goodness, and power! I love this book! I cried several times while reading this book...yes, it's that good :). Through her mother, Linda Barrick's memoir, Jen Barrick's unwavering faith, heart of gratitude, total devotion to God, and passion to proclaim Christ ministered to me so much. Though suffering from a severe brain injury, Jen's spiritual connection/love relationship with God has remained intact and even grew deeper and stronger after the accident. She could also see Jesus standing right beside her. How precious! She prayed, praised God, worshiped Him in songs, and quoted the Scriptures while she could not talk. God is truly glorified and His power is definitely made perfect in her weakness. Jen's Godly insights and heavenly-minded prayers encourage people around her, including her mom who is at times grieved over what Jen has lost. In her journal (before the car crash), Jen asked God for boldness in sharing her faith. God answered her prayer in a way that nobody could have imagined. God transformed Jen into His beautiful vessel, being used mightily for His glory and for His kingdom. I really appreciate that Linda shares openly and honestly how she feels. As a mother myself, I can relate to her and understand her struggles. At the end of the book, you will find Jen's message sharing the Gospel clearly. Story of God's grace. Story of hope. God is still the God of miracles! I highly recommend this book!
Below are some of my favorite Jen's quotes from the book:
"Thank You for giving me the brain injury." (p. 150...Can you imagine that?!)
"Mom, your problem is that your brain gets in the way. You think too much! You have to just trust God." (p.150)
"If He doesn't heal me completely it's because He has something far greater for me to do." (p. 167)
"I don't feel normal, and I'm okay with that. I never wanted to be normal. And I don't want to be remembered as 'the girl with the brain injury.' I want to be remembered as the girl who loved Jesus with all her heart." (p.244)
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~I received a copy of this book and a certificate (for giveaway) for free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.