Oct 10, 2011

The Color of Rain by Michael & Gina Spehn

When two childhood friends die of cancer six weeks apart, the shared experience of loss brings their grieving spouses together. Told from alternating points of view, this remarkable real-life Brady Bunch story is about what it means to endure the unthinkable—and still open our hearts to what’s next.

Matt Kell and Cathy Spehn had known each other since grade school. As adults, they each married, lived in their hometown and attended the same church. Their kids attended school together.

Matt died at home on Christmas Day after a three-year battle with cancer, leaving behind his wife, Gina, and two young boys. Prior to his death, Matt recorded a video diary for his sons, which included his desire and expectations that their mom would love again. After attending Matt’s inspirational funeral and reaching out to Gina with offers of support, Cathy was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. She died only seventeen days later, leaving behind her husband, Michael, and three young children. In her final hours, Cathy instructed Michael to “call Gina Kell.” The Color of Rain illuminates the stepping-stones of loss and healing that ultimately led to a joyful new life for Michael, Gina and their five children. Their path to becoming a modern day Brady Bunch was filled with grief, laughter, and a willingness to be restored to a new and even better life, despite the inevitable resistance they faced. As the dual first-person narrative reveals what it is like to walk through loss and love simultaneously, readers receive an intimate look at how this ordinary group of people lived, died, and ultimately persevered through extraordinary circumstances.

Michael and Gina Spehn, joined together by the loss of their spouses, co-founded The New Day Foundation for Families, which provides financial, emotional, and spiritual resources for families with children who have lost a parent to cancer. They are privileged to share their story and faith as speakers and as hosts of a weekly talk radio show, Your Family Matters, in Detroit, MI. Michael and Gina, along with their five children, make their home in southeastern Michigan.

Find out more at http://colorofrain.com/

The Color of Rain is a very inspirational story of loss, grief and hope. Two young families, totally devastated by their individual loss, are knit together by common experiences.

I enjoyed the format of alternating chapters written by Michael and Gina, and both of them are transparent, vulnerable and down to earth. Their stories are intertwined in a way that shows the hand of God in their lives. The five children were an enthusiastic and supportive part of the family dynamics as they started their very own "Brady Bunch".

Disclosure: Review copy received courtesy of Zondervan in exchange for my honest review.

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