To Remember Love by Tonya Ferguson

Tonya Ferguson - An Umbrella To Hold On Your Rainiest Of Days

Introduction

I believe in divine appointments. I believe there are times God brings people into our lives because there is unfinished business He wants us to complete. I believe that sometimes, God prompts us to reach out to strangers because in doing so, He knows that we will entertain angels unaware.

A few months ago, in the most unlikely of places, I met a woman named Tonya. During the course of our encounter, she shared that she would soon be publishing her first book. Although I do not normally solicit books from writers whose work I am unfamiliar with, I mentioned that I review inspirational books and invited her to send me a copy when it became available.

At the time, I had no idea who Tonya was or what Tonya’s book was about. Little did I know that I had just encountered life-changer Tonya Ferguson – and that her memoir, To Remember Love – Two Promises That Led Me To The Notes In The Ashes, was about to profoundly impact my life!

Book Review

To Remember Love - Tonya Ferguson

To Remember Love is the brutally honest, emotionally raw, and incredibly moving account of Tonya’s 13-year journey through grief. The story also chronicles her first-hand experience with both sudden and lingering death. The first half of the book describes in heartbreaking detail how Tonya’s life shattered when her father died of a sudden heart attack at her mother’s dinner table. The second half describes the daily anguish Tonya faced as she witnessed her mother succumb, one memory at a time, to Alzheimer’s during the nine-and-a-half years she served as her primary caretaker.

Tonya’s book bears testament to the incredible resilience of the human heart, the healing power of God, and the strength of the human spirit. The experiences she shares could easily break the strongest of people, yet Tonya’s strong faith – which she attributes to the parents she so lovingly writes about – provide her with the sustenance she needs to get through the bleakest of days.

Chances are, you will shed many a tear as you read this “book with a heartbeat”, for Tonya doesn’t sugar coat her shock, clinically detach from her pain, or toss meaningless platitudes our way as she works her way through her grief. Instead, she lovingly and passionately pours her heart onto each page. Because of her authenticity, each chapter she shares is a stepping stone we willingly traverse as she sojourns through the desolate valleys of death and grief… always forging forward and ever looking upward to her Mount Sinai of Hope.

To Remember Love is filled with comforting Scripture, bearing witness to her goal:

I want to give you Hope to replace your Hopelessness.
I want to give you Glory to replace your Grief.
I want to give you Blessings to replace your Battles.
I want to give you Faith to replace your Fear.

For anyone who has experienced excruciating loss and is carrying hidden pain that only God can reach – Tonya’s book is balm. By openly writing about her grief, she personally helped me process mine. She put into words emotions I could not express. I felt my spirit shift and lighten as I read her words and felt frozen feelings surface and melt in God’s healing light.

If you are living in the aftermath of loss – if you feel stuck in grief – or if you know someone who is – buy this book! Likewise, if you are a caretaker or know one – if you have a loved one who is facing Alzheimer’s – or if you need to learn more about this disease – buy this book!

It is healing. It is life-changing. It is empowering. I cannot recommend it highly enough!

Tonya Ferguson

Tonya Ferguson

Tonya Ferguson is an inspirational Author, Singer, Songwriter and Recording Artist who changes lives as she shares her personal life journey and struggles through her songs and her books. She is down-to-earth, authentic, and highly engaging. To learn more about Tonya, visit her website.

To Remember Love is available in Paperback, Kindle, Nook and Audio Book editions.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book from the author for review purposes. I was not compensated for this review, nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

31 Responses to “To Remember Love by Tonya Ferguson”

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  1. I agree that God brings people into our lives for a variety of reasons.

    My grandmother had Alzheimer disease, she lasted longer than most who have it, about thirteen or fourteen years. In 2004, she passed away a few days before her 94th birthday. Most of her children, were by her side when she died. I was holding her hand, such a wonderful God fearing woman. I have many pleasant memories of her.

    I’m going to check out the book, thanks for the recommendation. 🙂

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Bless you, Opal, for sharing! I learned so much about Alzheimer’s from reading Tonya’s book – including that it is a testament to your loving family’s care that your grandmother lived so long (as evidenced by the fact that most of her children were at her side when she died!)

      I hope that Tonya’s book is as much of a blessing to you as it was to me. Thanks for stopping by! I LOVE the name of your blog!

  2. Leesa says:

    I am visiting from Never Growing Old over40 link party. The title of you blog caught my eye. This book looks like a inspiration I may have to check it out.

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Leesa – I just visited your blog and I hope you’ll be back to share your sewing talents with us!
      This is an AWESOME book – I hope you have the chance to check it out! 🙂

  3. Sounds like a great book full of insights and support for those dealing with something as difficult as death
    Thanks for SASSing

  4. Jenny says:

    Visiting through the Getting to Know You Hop. I will certainly be checking this book out. I have been looking for something like this. My father passed away one month after my son was born four years ago. It seems like every turn of the past several years has only brought more grief and I wonder what I am supposed to learn from all of it. Thank you for going outside of something you would normally do to share this with us!

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      You’re so welcome Jenny. Grief and loss are something we all have to deal with at some point in our lives… I feel priviliged to be able to share resources with others that I feel can help them through difficult times. I pray that you are able to work your way through your grief and move on in spite of your loss!

  5. That sounds like such an inspiring book. Thanks for sharing it!

  6. Pamela says:

    I’m eager to read this one! Isn’t it amazing how God allows just what we need to bump into us? That’s one thing I love about my Heavenly Father. Everything is for my good ad His glory.

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Hi Pam

      I”m so glad you stopped by – you will be SO blessed by this book! Would love for you to stop back and share your thoughts with us after you read it! 🙂

  7. Elaine Rakoczy says:

    Thanks for sharing such an inspiring book! Plan to share it with a friend going through a tough time now as sole caregiver to her Mother~ God never gives us something we can’t handle and the tough times can bring out how strong we all can really be ~ So excited to be part of SASS, too~ 🙂 Elaine

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Hi Elaine

      How sweet of you to think of your friend – caregiving is SUCH a difficult job – your friend will be blessed as she reads this book! It can be SO helpful when we are going through difficult times to know that we are not alone in what we are going through and that there are others who understand our situation. In addition to sharing her story, Tonya offers some great tips for caregivers and for friends of caregivers in her book. I’m sure the book will be a blessing to her and that you are a huge blessing to your friend! 🙂

  8. YoliDreams says:

    Hi there! Found you through the weekend hop, but I find myself on your blog weekly 🙂 You know I just started to read an inspirational biography along the line of this one. It’s my first time. I’me very much enjoying it, so I’ll look out for more of your reviews of books like this one.

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Thanks Yoli – I really enjoy inspirational memoirs and have already reviewed a few great ones – you can find them by clicking on the Create With Joy – Book Reviews link under More Great Resources – and I plan on reviewing more in the future as I come across them! 🙂

  9. Charlotte says:

    Sounds like a wonderful book. I certainly agree that God uses people to accomplish his purposes and brings them together. It has happened so many times in my own life. There are things that have happened that could only happen with God directing them.
    Blessings,
    Charlotte

  10. Mary says:

    Sounds like a wonderful book, Ramona. I can certainly relate to being in a place where I’ve felt as though God couldn’t possibly take any more from me, only to have Him do just that. I’ve learned along the way that there is no truth greater and yet no mystery deeper than the first few lines of The Lord’s Prayer and I’ve come to believe that the definition of faith (for me, at least) is the ability to truly hear those words and accept them, without the need for any further explanation. I’m always interested in reading about the journey that others have taken/are taking in an attempt to make sense of it all. I’ll have to put Tonya’s book on my “to read” list. Thanks so much for sharing it as part of your inspirations this week. :~) Have a very blessed day, my friend. ~Mary

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Thanks for sharing Mary… I’m also amazed by how reading the journey’s of others and seeing how they grapple with the things we all struggle with can help bring clarity to my own situation… and how the very struggles that I’d rather avoid are the very things that deepen my faith.

      You have a blessed day, too, and I hope you enjoy Tonya’s book! 🙂

  11. I, also, believe in Divine Appointments. My life has been continuously bookmarked with those very type of appointments, and I thank God for each and every one.

    I am unbelievably grateful to have finally found the “Purpose” of my 13 year storm. It has been completely revealed to me through REMARKABLE people like “Create With Joy,” and people like each and every one of you. I have come to realize “We are all in this “Thing” called Life together,” and my enduring the very worst nightmare I could have imagined for 13 years, was worth every second if it reaches out and sheds a little “light” into someone’s bitter darkness. I believe the words I’ve written are so powerful because they are bathed in the Truth of me living them. I’m not just “Preaching At” people, I’m “Reaching Out” to people. There’s a difference. I am able to feel your heart’s ache because my heart beats with an ache too.

    I welcome you to contact me. I love getting to know new friends. Feel free to get to know me a little better by visiting my website. While you’re there Please accept my FREE SONG as a personal gift from me to you. God Bless You!

    Philippians 4:13,
    Tonya Ferguson

    “When all you have left are memories, don’t forget…”to remember love”

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Thanks so much Tonya for stopping by! You have been a TRUE blessing to me, not only through your book, but in the process, in getting to konw you, I’ve been blessed by our blossoming friendship as well. I encourage thouse of you with who this book resonates to visit Tonya’s website and to truly feel free to reach out to her – she is the REAL DEAL – a REAL caring, loving, genuine person who WILL write back and who WILL bless you with her love, her prayers, her caring heart.

      You also have the voice of an angel and I look forward to sharing your music with my readers in an upcoming feature! 🙂

  12. Ah yes… Me, too. I believe in divine appointments, too. Which is the thinking behind the God-Incidences community at Getting Down With Jesus. 🙂

    – Jennifer

  13. Jayda says:

    All I can say is wow. I have dealt with loss, but fortunately nothing as devastating as Tonyas story and I wouldnt wish that on anyone. I am happy to hear though that she is sharing her story as there are many who need to know they are not alone.

    – Thanks for linking up with SASS, hope to see you this week!

    http://twochildrenandamigraine.blogspot.ca/2012/04/green-friday-simple-ways-to-be-greener.html

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1
      says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by Jayda! I hope that by sharing her book here that it will find its way into the hands of those that can benefit from her story the most! 🙂

  14. Morgan Dragonwillow (@MDragonwillow) says:

    Blog hopping from Chasing Joy’s Flashback Friday. Enjoyed the Book Review. Thank you for sharing.

    Peace,
    Morgan

  15. This sounds so interesting (and the cover is gorgeous!) Thanks for sharing.

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