READER ENCOUNTER 1

By: Feli Sebastian

I was returning to Crossroads Fair Trade store in Bloomington weeks after my initial book signing. I entered the store just as another woman was crossing the threshold. We exchanged pleasantries. We happened to leave at the same time and as I held the door, I asked if she frequented the store. We laughed and admitted that we both loved the store’s candies, chocolates, and soapstone figurines. Then the woman turned to me and with a tinge of sadness and said, “You know, I bought a book here a couple of weeks ago. It really touched me. I wish I could meet the author.”

I asked, “What’s the title of the book?” She replied, “Broken and Beloved.” I looked at her and with a smile and said, “That’s my book.”

She acted like she wanted to hug me, and I was going to comply but the COVID-19 restriction stopped her. Instead, she kept saying, “I can’t believe this…that I met you today.” She went on to add, “I’m very thankful that you shared your vulnerability. You have given me hope and strength.”

I thanked her and we moved on with our days. Was this a coincidence or God moment? I have no answer, but I have a conviction that I needed to be at Crossroads at that exact time to make this connection. God bless! You, too, give me strength.

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