7 Questions Sunday: Lori Wildenberg & A Messy Journey

LifeLetter Cafe LifeWriter Lori Wildenberg
is a licensed parent-family educator and co-founder of 1 Corinthians 13Parenting
and is passionate about helping families build connections that last a life time.
She’s a parent consultant, national speaker, and lead Mentor Mom
on the Moms Together Facebook Community Page.


The Wildenberg home is nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
A perfect day in Lori’s world is a hike with her hubby, four kids plus a daughter-in-love,
and Murphy the family labradoodle.


The Cafe is thrilled to announce the release of Lori’s newest book,
Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home,
in insightful read offering practical steps towards navigating your relationship with a detoured child whether they are rejecting faith, dabbling in sin, or wholeheartedly turning their back on God.


Here is an overview in Lori’s own words,


Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home
is for parents walking the difficult road with a wayward child.
This book is filled with stories from dozens of Christian parents and some prodigals.
It includes my personal journey with my same-sex attracted daughter.

The book is vulnerable and honest. No matter why a parent has a prodigal
(or if you love someone who does) this book will bring comfort, help, and encouragement.
There is hope.


So LifeLetter Cafe is excited to share this recent interview
with Lori Wildenberg 
to dive deeper into the story behind
Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home.

Enjoy her answers below in the latest 7 Questions Sunday!





Today’s 7 Questions



LifeLetter Cafe: What was the inspiration behind Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home?

Lori Wildenberg: Life doesn’t always go the way we expect. As parents, we can do everything “right” and still have a child who veers off the expected path. With my daughter’s permission and input, I share our journey— the struggles a prodigal child brings and how to live life in the middle of the mess.

This is a book I didn’t want to write. Having a child who has gone astray not only causes heartache it can be isolating and shaming. No one wants the hurt, the pain that a prodigal brings. But as only God can do, in my grief He tenderized me and moved me to reach out to bring comfort and encouragement to other families facing major struggles with their child.



LifeLetter Cafe: What audience are you trying to reach?

Lori Wildenberg: Messy Journey is for the wounded and weary parent and for those who love them. It is also a resource for counselors, pastors, and support group leaders.  This book offers biblical truth, helpful strategies, prayers, and hope for the hurting and often lonely parent.

LifeLetter Cafe: How has God been your life and strength during the “messiest” and most unresolved of times as a parent?

Lori Wildenberg: God has been my constant companion while traveling this journey with my daughter who is same sex attracted and has gender identity issues. He moves me to speak when I need to and silences my voice when I must be quiet.(I have found He quiets me more than He allows me to speak). Living in the tension of grace and truth while one is on a messy journey with a prodigal requires God-given wisdom and supernatural peace. When I get out of my own way and trust the Creator of the Universe, the Creator of my child, I find hope in the journey. After all, He loves Courtney even more than I do.


Christian parents feel as if they are constantly fighting the culture.
But we have a God who always wins and never gives up!
– Lori Wildenberg –

LifeLetter Cafe: What do you hope readers will gain from the book?

Lori Wildenberg: My prayer is that the moms and dads reading this book feel encouraged and less alone. My hope is that by reading the stories of others and implementing the suggestions presented they feel empowered to get through the day and to never give up.

LifeLetter Cafe: How much of your own life shows up in Messy Journey?

Lori Wildenberg: This book isn’t only about my daughter and me, it is filled with many parents and their stories. The prodigals’ substance abuse, sexual sin, and/or rejection of faith are all topics that are addressed. As society normalizes sin, Christian parents feel as if they are constantly fighting the culture. But we have a God who always wins and never gives up!

LifeLetter Cafe: What is your favorite moment shared in the book?Lori Wildenberg:  My favorite moment in the books occurs when a friend asks Courtney (my prodigal whose voice is sprinkled throughout the book) “What is the message you want parents to get from the book, Messy Journey?” “To never give up. That’s the message.”

Her response warms my heart and encourages me; partly because she is still traveling that messy journey. Her statement  stirs hope in me and in other parents of kids who have gone astray.

LifeLetter Cafe: Did you anticipate a career in writing and speaking as a teenager?Lori Wildenberg: I always wanted to be a teacher and a mom. I am thankful I have been able to wear both hats. I am passionate about helping parents be the moms and dads their kids need. I never considered becoming an author. In the first parenting course I developed and taught, a few of the participants told me I should put the information in a book. I told them I was too busy raising my four kids, they could take notes. Messy Journey is my fourth parenting book. God can do the impossible, even with a resistant and rebellious heart.


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About the author : David "JB" Miller


David “JB” Miller is founder and author at LifeLetter Ministries. He and his wife Cheri make their home in beautiful Paradise Valley, Arizona and have six children and six grandchildren they absolutely adore.

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