LIVING IN THE PEACE ZONE
Today, we’d like to introduce you to Donna Wheat Wuerch. Donna, tell us how your amazing story began and what has led up to your success today?
My story started at an early age when at only eight years old my daddy was diagnosed with brain cancer. I grew up very fast when after his surgery he became more like a sibling to me than my daddy. And to make matters worse, I also became his caregiver while mom was at work and it was during that time that he began to have very violent seizures. I had to run to neighbors for help. I knew fear for the first time because he almost died each time. But in the midst of it all, I witnessed my mama’s resilience, determination and most of all her faith that was unconquerable. She was steadfast and I remember the joy of the Lord that was in her. She had such a peace in the midst of this very troubling time which made her fearless in my young eyes. Fast forward many years later to when it was the care of my own sweetheart when he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Renal Cell Carcinoma (kidney cancer). My mom’s example came back to me and I knew, if she could make it, so could I!
What happened to make SHIFT HAPPEN in your life?
My sweet mother’s life of joy, peace, and resilience through the storms was what paved the way for my young faith that grew to be strong faith through raising my own children, passing through the storms of financial upheavals and then being able to conquer death.
Has your journey been easy? What challenges have you had to overcome?
I would say it wasn’t easy especially as that young girl who had to grow up very fast to take care of her daddy. It wasn’t easy when my young husband and I faced debilitating illnesses in our two young children. It wasn’t easy when we faced financial upheavals. It wasn’t easy when our marriage was challenged. But was it worth the uneasiness and the trials and the challenges? Oh yes, it was! Each struggle and each win proved that tough times don’t last, but tough people do! We outlasted every setback, every illness, and every storm. Each struggle was part of our faith journey story of overcoming every obstacle and situation that we encountered. I’m reminded of an old Andrae Crouch song that went like this: “Through it all. Through it all. I’ve learned to trust in Jesus. I’ve learned to trust in God. Through it all. Through it all. I’ve learned to depend upon His Word.”
What do you want in life that you don’t currently have?
I live daily in as a ”must need” basis of God’s influence in my life. When my sweetheart was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer, I drew upon all the faith that I could muster up from the legacy that had been a part of my life from a young age. My husband and I had been the ones who were always called in to pray for others when they needed a miracle, and when they needed encouragement. Now it was our turn to live the faith that we had encouraged others with before. God gave me a tool in social media to not talk about the concerns and the battle that we were facing, but to celebrate each day with absolute trusting God for our miracles. We started living and embracing every moment that we had and I started blogging about it. Not the woes and the trial parts, but the inbred faith that we had in knowing that “Nothing is impossible with God.” I kept blogging about that and about how God was sustaining us and with us and the ultimate joy we were experiencing in the midst of our trials. It reminded me of Paul and Silas in prison and how they could sing and praise and rejoice in the midst of their dark cold damp prison.
What is something you do daily to impact the lives of others?
After my husband passed away, I asked God what I could do now that my partner in ministry and life was gone and like a clarion call, I heard God say “Your ministry has just begun. Now make your blogging your ministry and every day compose a post based upon your faith journey and post it early in the morning so that when others get up and start their day, they’ll desire to read it to give them the extra fuel they need to make it through their days.” So I did that. And I still do that. I wake up before 5 AM every morning and read what I wrote the day before. With fresh early morning eyes, I often see tweaks that I need to make from the day before. So, by 6 AM every morning you can count on that post being on my timeline on Facebook as well as on my MyPeaceZone.com website.
I urge others to find their mission in life. It may not be blogging, but it may be being a witness and a bright light to their coworkers, volunteering for a charitable organization. I do that too. I volunteer at the Children’s Hospital near me. I volunteer for this EMwomen organization in fundraising and as a technical editor. I am greatly involved in my church and ministries there. From my blog post, people will private message me and ask me to pray with them or counsel them and I do that. My nephew who is a Baptist pastor texted me this morning that a line in my Facebook post today gave him the idea for the line he was looking for in the song he had just written. Another one will tell me that what I wrote was the answer to a decision that they were needing to make. My days are full. I am so blessed to be in this season of not just sitting in a rocking chair, but in taking all of the wisdom and knowledge from my life as well as everything I’ve learned about a faith journey with Christ and using it as though that was my daily business. It is my business because it’s doing God’s business.
What do you hope to accomplish in the future?
I’m quite confident that this blogging ministry will continue the rest of my life and hopefully out of it there might be a book in the works. Many people keep urging me to make it a 365-day a year Devotional Book. I am humbled by their recommendations. Of course, I plan on finishing strong and being a light to my children, my grandchildren and everyone who I encounter.
If you could go back and tell your 20-year-old self one thing, what would that be?
I’d tell my 20-year-old self to not sweat the small stuff, trust God that each trial is a part of maturing you in character and faith and that everything is going to turn out better than what you can ever imagine. My EMwomen story happens to be one of great joy because I’m seeing my children as the fruit of the labors of my husband and me for so many years. My sweet husband dreamed of the day of impacting nations. We made it to Mexico and Belize and Canada and around the United States but now I’m seeing my children living our dream and vision. Thanks be to God.
How has EMwomen impacted your life?
EMwomen is the product of many years of praying for my children and trusting God to use them in a powerful way. My life is daily impacted by the testimonies and stories of women whose lives have been radically changed. I continue to thank God that the seeds of faith that a little 8-year-old girl learned decades ago produced this amazing harvest of blessings today.
LIVING IN THE PEACE ZONE
Young Love – Donna age 12, Ron age 13
“Mamaw” – Donna’s Mom at Wedding