Minden Press-Herald

Wednesday
Oct 01st

Labor of Love

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Husband, wife dedicate book to grandchildren

It's a labor of love. A husband-and-wife team has written a book dedicated to their grandchildren to share with all children the love they feel God gave to them.

"Who Put the Stars in the Sky?" began in the hearts of Wayne and Judy Jackson several years ago after he had been battling with kidney cancer, heart trouble, a kidney transplant and diabetes.

Inspired by the joy they received through the love of a grandchild while going through their ordeal, the couple decided to start a series of children's books.

In a letter Wayne wrote to a publishing company three days before they learned his cancer had returned, he described his reason for wanting to write a book.

"This experience drew me closer to God and I realized without His love, I would not be here today," he said.

"During this time of recovery, my wife and I were blessed with a grandson. That child became my rehabilitation. We have since been blessed with two more grandchildren and these grandchildren have inspired me to give something back to the Lord for all He has done for me."

Wayne lost his battle to cancer in 2008 before his dream of publishing that first book could happen. About a year ago his wife Judy took up the challenge of getting the books published and their dream of the first book recently came true.

According to Judy, it all started around 2006 when both of them were penning their own separate thoughts about their experience through Wayne's illness.

"He started out going to write a book about all of his illnesses, his surgeries and what God brought him through," Judy said. "Both of us were writing our own versions of what we had gone through."

Then Wayne began to ponder the importance of his story. But a gentle nudge from a wife that knew the truth returned his focus to the work at hand.

Judy recalls a conversation with her husband. "One day, he said, 'You know there are people that have had worse than me.' I said, 'Wayne, it's just so touching to me and inspirational and it would help others that have gone through illnesses.'"

Judy continued that even two of Wayne's doctors thought he should write his story, if only for the medical community. But for the moment Judy thought there was a better plan.

"I said what about children's books? He always said Jordan was his rehabilitation – that when he was having a bad day, all he had to do was have Jordan there with him and everything was fine."

So the children's book writing began. With Wayne at home he did most of the writing and Judy would share her thoughts.

According to Wayne's letter to the publisher, the idea behind the books was to set the stories to current day happenings to show how the Bible is as applicable today as when it was written.

The couple's thinking is that the Bible's ancient stories could be easier to understand if the stories are told in reference to something a child might actually experience.

"Who Put the Stars in the Sky?" the first book in the series, is a delightful story that has a warm atmosphere created by a grandfather telling his two grandsons Jordan and Gavin how God created the heavens and earth.

The second book in the series, "There's a Snake in the Garden," is at the publisher waiting to be printed and Judy is in the process of writing a third book.

"Who Put the Stars in the Sky?" was published by Publish America and can be purchased at Barnes and Noble or Amazon.com.

 

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