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Beads of Healing

Prayer, Trauma, and Spiritual Wholeness

Kristen E. Vincent • March 2017

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Healing from trauma begins with the courageous act of telling your story.

Yet many survivors of trauma are afraid to tell anyone about their deeply painful and personal experience(s). Trauma survivors often feel shame, guilt, fear, and anger. They may also carry deep spiritual wounds, such as feeling abandoned or punished by God. They may wonder how they can ever trust God.

In Beads of Healing, Kristen Vincent shares her story of childhood trauma and how she eventually found God's peace, healing, and wholeness. She tells how, over 35 years after the trauma, she encountered God as never before in the presence of a Christian community. In this setting where she felt safe and loved, and through the help of spiritual practices like scripture reading, prayer, group sharing, and reflection, she finally found the peace she had been seeking since age 7.

Vincent models how to name feelings of grief, anger, abandonment, shame, and fear. She gives readers ideas for ways to use prayer beads as a safe way to enter conversations with God, to talk honestly with their Creator, and open themselves to God's love.

This powerful story of one woman's journey to spiritual healing offers hope for all trauma survivors, as well as those who have experienced loss, hurt, or other spiritual wounds. Each chapter includes

  • a scripture passage that supports the chapter theme
  • truth-telling (the author talks about the chapter theme from her perspective)
  • reflection questions
  • a prayer bead experience
  • a listening focus (a line to repeat with your prayer beads)
  • an opportunity to check in with yourself before moving forward

NOTE: The author recommends that readers study this book with someone: a therapist, pastor, spiritual director, or support group. Beads of Healing features a Leader's Guide with an outline for 16 sessions, links to instructions for making prayer beads, and a guide to using prayer beads.

This book will be a valuable resource for pastors, counselors, and others who provide support for trauma survivors.


Kristen E. Vincent is an award-winning author, speaker, and artisan whose passion is spiritual formation, including the use of prayer beads. She is the author of three books: A Bead and a Prayer: A Beginner’s Guide to Protestant Prayer Beads, Beads of Healing: Prayer, Trauma, and Spiritual Wholeness, and We Are Beloved: A Lenten Journey with Protestant Prayer Beads. She is the coauthor, with Max Vincent, of Another Bead, Another Prayer: Devotions to Use with Protestant Prayer Beads. Kristen travels throughout the US and internationally to lead retreats and workshops. She is a graduate of Duke Divinity School and The Academy for Spiritual Formation (#34). She lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband, Max, a United Methodist pastor, and their son, Matthew. Kristen loves words, the mountains, gatherings on her porch, and dark chocolate. Find her at www.prayerworksstudio.com.

ISBN: 978-0-8358-1635-9

Kindle ISBN: 978-0-8358-1636-6

EPub ISBN: 978-0-8358-1637-3

Imprint: Upper Room

Pub Date: 20170301

Trim Size: 6 in (w) x 9 in (h) x 0.309 in (d)

Page Count: 144

BISAC Categories: RELIGION / Christian Living / Spiritual Growth

BISAC1: REL012120

BISAC2: REL012080

BISAC3:

Praise for Beads of Healing

Beads of Healing is a wonderful resource for survivors of trauma. Kristen Vincent skillfully weaves personal narrative, scripture, and guided prayer experiences with beads into a beautiful invitation to healing. A survivor herself, the author gently draws readers toward the healing practices of silence, solitude, and other classical spiritual disciplines. I highly recommend this book for anyone who companions survivors of trauma through ministries of spiritual formation.
—Elaine A. Heath Dean, Duke Divinity School Author of We Were the Least of These: Reading the Bible with Survivors of Sexual Abuse

Beads of Healing is an honest, heartfelt telling of God’s divine healing and abundant love that are available all of us. Vincent’s voice is stronger than ever as she shares her truth and offers practical guidance for using prayer beads in the path to wholeness, gratitude, and peace. This book is for trauma survivors, prayer warriors, and anyone interested in speaking truth, healing wounds, and experiencing God’s love.
—Reba Riley Author of Post-Traumatic Church Syndrome: One Woman's Desperate, Funny, and Healing Journey through 30 Religions Before Her 30th Birthday

This is a lovely book about the use of prayer beads. Often, when we find ourselves truly hurting, we are almost in too much pain to know how to pray for ourselves, especially for long-term injuries. Kristen Vincent, from her own experience of prayer and healing, offers a truly useful guide to the reader, useful in the same way as talking with a wise and nonjudgmental friend. I recommend this book to anyone in need of such help.
—Roberta Bondi Professor Emerita, Candler School of Theology, Emory University Author of Wild Things: Poems of Grief and Love, Loss and Gratitude