And It Was Beautiful

BeautifulWe mamas are the keeper of memories…we are the ones to know the victory of a difficult math concept finally captured, we are the ones who know when to bypass broccoli and pull out the ice cream. I grieve that my story is taking that role away from me. And I struggle that my babies won’t know what a gift the collecting of those memories has been. That’s why I write and write and write. Because I want them to know how important they are and how beautiful the small moments of their lives truly are. So I sit and remember and write. I am a keeper.        ~Kara Tippetts

The moment I read these words, something tangible caught in my throat. I had felt it welling up inside me with every page I finished. It was the understanding of a heart that needed to write and write and write if only to protect the memories quietly kept within her.

How many times had I felt the weight of being keeper to my own four loves? Be it after my stroke or my daddy’s funeral or my long-term illness unraveled before me. How many times had I been driven to sit and remember and write? How many times could these have been the very words to describe the trappings of my heart?

HumanityAnd yet, these are not my words.

They are hers.

Sacred, hard won and unapologetically real.

I suppose in many ways I should have known that drinking them in would bring all the things in my heart to the surface.

Kara Tippetts had that gift.

But what I did not expect is the overwhelming weight of sharing her words with you. It is not enough to simply say, ”Read her new book, y’all.” It is instead a place to know her.

She was someone’s mama, someone’s daughter, someone’s sister, someone’s greatest love, someone’s person, someone’s someone.

And It Was Beautiful reminds you of Kara’s humanity. That she loved and lived and wrote in a way that did not discount her messy places.

It is why nearly every page found me saying, “I know this place. I know this hurt. I know this Jesus.”

Just as I know this pressing urgency…

Today is all I have and I must keep my eyes focused on what’s in front of me and do the next thing in love. I have faces to kiss and bags to pack and prayers to pray and love to share right now, right here today. And so I say thank you for these things while swallowing the new pills that hopefully can keep more cancer armies from crossing my borders. Blessing the Lord is not clean, it’s not just when things are easy and good and healthy. It’s thanking Him at ALL times and in ALL circumstances, not for the painful things but for His presence.

Yes, we have walked different roads.

She had Stage IV breast cancer. I have a chronic and systemic illness.

She had to buy lunch boxes. I had to buy backpacks.

She cried out a “Jesus, help.”  I cry out a “Jesus, please.”

Her favorite color was green. My favorite color is red.

She rang the snot out of that cancer treatment bell the first time she finished chemo. And I did the most crazy, awkward dance with my cane when I completed my most recent round of physical therapy.

But even in our differences, we both have known the same need to praise Him in all the hard things.

And that is the gift that Kara Tippetts gave the world.

A place to recognize the unfailing goodness of Jesus, even in the deepest earthly pain.

It is a place so beautiful it transcends cancer and death and its shattering hurt.

1But it is also a story unfinished. One that Kara’s publisher and friend, David C. Cook, has masterfully crafted so it leaves the reader wanting more than is given.  Because he understands the truth that her ending is being written in a place we all have yet to go…


With that, the time has finally come for me to say, “Read this book, y’all.”

And in the meantime, keep well, live well and do the next thing in love.

To learn more about Kara Tippett’s journey as  well as her continued legacy, go to

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from David C. Cook and Litfuse Publicity for a blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



4 thoughts on “And It Was Beautiful

  1. Sue Powell says:

    Can’t wait to get my copy…and “Thank You”,for sharing just enough to entice other’s to read it too,and for sharing all the ‘similarities’ and ‘differences’ that still come from the ‘same place’,the tender heart of a loving wife and mom. Can’t wait to meet up with you,when we get Home! You are dearly loved,my friend.

  2. Debbie Cormany says:

    Thank you Sara for sharing about Kara and how her life lived with the cancer still affirmed that God is good. Her dreams were shattered, but she learned a valuable truth that Jesus is enough. I’m looking forward to reading ” And It Was Beautiful”, knowing it will be an encouragement to those of us still here in the trenches. How I see this same confidence in your life Sweet Daughter.

  3. Philip Cormany says:

    Thought came as I was deciding to read Kara’s book, that our county library encourages each of us to fill out a form to request that they buy books to share. Later today I am going to the MCPL here and ask that they place copies of her books on the shelves, – unless they already have. Our dauhter-in-law in Michigan had already , recommended , “the hardest peace,” by Kara Tippett, which we now own and devoured.
    It mentions another of herbooks, “mundane faithfilness,” which is next.

  4. Joanna Howard says:

    Kara’s perspective reminds me a lot of Psalm 86. I hear her crying out for the L-rd to teach her His ways and her yearning to walk in His truth. I am encouraged when I read of her undivided heart, loving G-d so hard and loving her kids and family so much that it hurts. She chooses to praise the L-rd with her whole heart, not just when it is easy to do so, but especially when it hurts. It is so refreshing to be reminded that even in the pain of life that G-d’s love towards her and each one of us is great! For He alone is the one that delivers us from the depth of the grave!

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