Bonnie Gray | Invisible Wounds & Soul Care, 156
Bonnie Gray | Invisible Wounds & Soul Care
Bonnie Gray is the author of Whispers of Rest, Finding Spiritual Whitespace and Sweet Like Jasmine. An inspirational speaker and podcast host of Breathe: The Stress Less Podcast, Bonnie touches thousands of lives using storytelling, soul care, and prayer.
Bonnie’s global following of readers come to her for inspiring Christian content in her authentic, unique voice. Her writing has been published and syndicated across a broad online audience.
Bonnie lives in California with her husband and two sons.
Bonnie Gray joins Amber to discuss growing up as a Chinese American, the invisible wounds she experienced, and how she learned to care for her soul. Her journey is documented in her newest book, Sweet Like Jasmine.
Questions discussed surrounding Bonnie’s invisible wounds and soul care:
(4:37) You are Chinese American and grew up in San Francisco’s Chinatown, much of which you write about in Sweet Like Jasmine. Take us back and share a bit of what childhood was like for you.
(7:37) Something you share in the book is how you lived two completely different lives as a child. At home, you were fully Chinese and very much secluded from the outside world. At school, you were fully immersed in American culture. How did that impact your identity in your young years?
- (14:58) It is difficult to finally acknowledged you’ve been manipulated by your mother for decades. Would you say, you have to choose daily to forgive her?
(30:49) At what point did Jesus enter your story?
- (39:57) Share a little about soul-care.
(43:10) What encouragement can you offer to women who feel terribly alone in their struggles?
Quotes to Remember from Invisible Wounds & Soul Care:
“I was born to a mail order bride from Hong Kong.”
“My dad left when I was seven.”
“It get got harder to talk about what was happening at home. You think it might be easier once I put myself through college, [because] it seemed like the typical overcoming achieving immigrant story, but it actually got harder…”
“I just felt like half of me was Chinese and half of me was American…There was no one place where I could be whole Bonnie.”
“I need to be more honest with myself than I’m uncomfortable with and I need to face the reality of the mother that I do have, rather than the mother that I long to bring into being.”
“I’m going to let go of hoping that she becomes or gives me the words that I really need to be loved or feel cherished. That’s really forgiveness. It’s saying, I’m letting this person go from the debt that was created in my heart, that loneliness, or those wounds, and I’m going to move on with my life. And look for those affirmation in other relationships that God provides through our friends, our spiritual family…”
“Forgiveness takes one but reconciliation takes two. For those of us who have people who have hurt us, we need to remind ourselves that God wants us to have healthy boundaries.”
“What this book is about, Sweet Like Jasmine, is actually asking the questions I never asked for myself. Where is my father? Is he dead or alive? Suddenly, I realized if I could be honest, and my mom wasn’t controlling me what would I want to do? What would I want to know, and a whole new life open for me…It’s not just about Bonnie, but these are moments each of us has to face in finding what is our true identity as a woman?”
“God helped me as a little girl to overcome these hard things, because I just found when I read the Bible it wasn’t a theological thing for me, it was I need you God, I need to hear from you.”
Encouragement for women who are lonely in their struggles?
“Journaling. Studies show that just 10 minutes of journaling, just writing how you feel is going to help you release some of those stresses and anxiety.”
“You need to speak. You need to tell somebody….In terms of relieving stress and anxiety and loneliness….we have to speak, in order to release those emotions that help our body feel better.”
“Do things that help us experience and feel joy and peace. So many of us feel like if we have some problem going on with our health, or finances or relationship, we feel like we can’t do something fun or happy or peaceful. No, God is saying, ‘You’re worthy.’ You can have all these areas of messiness, and brokenness, and you’re still worthy of peace and joy, you can still give yourself permission to do those things.”
- Book: Sweet Like Jasmine by Bonnie Gray
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