A Strand of Pearls

Project Description | Notable Quotes | Biography of Editor and Authors | Share your story
Wounded Healer Stories | Prayer Needs


Click here for A Strand of Pearls Products 

Debra A. Newell, Ph.D., creative director, editor and contributing author

A Strand of Pearls is a Kingdom product and an outreach ministry. Everyone has a story. So it is with this God-project.




Seven Women, seven lives - forever transformed.

"This is God's story in our lives," says one of the contributing authors.



A Strand of Pearls is a collection of wisdom and truths.  Seven women share stories of healing, redemption and transformation, overcoming life experiences only salvageable through God.  Their candor and courage in sharing their stories are both an encouragement to others who have gone through or are going through trauma, as well as a testament to God's grace and mercy.

About 4 years ago, the Lord put on my heart to invite several women to contribute stories of redemption and restoration to a collection that created a book. As authors to the collection, we agreed to put profits into ministries for healing of women. The book, A Strand of Pearls has completed one printing. We are now making the book available as an e-book and a print-on-demand 2nd Edition hard copy book. Additionally, there is a set of audio CD's, and soon-to-be DVD set with the narrative of the book as well as interviews with the authors.

Each story is especially crafted to speak to the heart of the reader.  The book is designed to let women out there know they are not alone, that there are people who understand, and most importantly - that our Heavenly Father cares enough to work his plan for our life to perfection.  And, that He wants to heal the hurts, wounds, disappointments, and mayhem that have been experienced in life.

Each woman's story speaks of the bountiful transformation offered to those who seek salvation and healing from a higher power, who choose to work through hard places, rather than pretend they do not exist, ignoring a festering wound that needs tending.  Each of these women makes the commitment to NOT let the "enemy" win, and to do whatever it takes each day to move upward in the spiral on this journey through life. 

There are numerous potential audiences for A Strand of Pearls.  The widest appeal will be for women, however it would benefit men as well to sensitize them to the trauma issues that their wives, mothers, sisters, daughters and friends are exposed to and experience.  A Strand of Pearls also has the potential to open up a dialog in families to facilitate healing of family members.  The book is a great one to provide to church members or new converts, or as an evangelical tool for individuals experiencing or in need of learning about the depth and breadth of God's love for every person.  A great "book club" book to read and discuss.  Another potential use is for a victim support group.  It can simply be a book for all readers who are fascinated by the many facets, twists and turns of life, and how God has a plan for each of us.  This book is an excellent resource for church resource rooms/bookstores

More info and video coming soon.

Notable Quotes from the authors

A Strand of Pearls
Notable Quotes from each "Pearl"

Chapter 1:  Beauty for Ashes by Eunice V. Johnson

I can now say that true transformation has occurred-what was before has been changed into something very new - not by an exercise of my will power or by my power to withstand temptations, but by the transforming application of the Truth of God's Word and His great love apprehending me, His beloved!  Yes, He has given me beauty for ashes...that He may be glorified!

Chapter 2:  Christ's Redeeming Love by Karen Haskell

God created us to be His glory moving about the earth.  So, in sharing this testimony, my desire is that in my story you will see God's glory and that it will draw you closer to the Father.  It's not only who we are today, but what God has brought us out of that glorifies Him.

Chapter 3:  The Keys by Diana Beatty

Forgiving those who have hurt us severs the power the other person has over us either in the present or the past.  Forgiveness not only affects our emotions but our physical and spiritual self and it is our first step in showing love to ourselves.  To love oneself when no one else seems to is a monumental undertaking, but it begins with forgiveness. 

Chapter 4:  Redemption by Melody Wilson

...I realized that I had been resisting God and fighting Him out of fear.  I then surrendered everything to Him.   My prayer was, "God I give my life to you totally and completely, because I know that I cannot make much of it on my own.  I know that whatever You do with me will be better than this."

Chapter 5:  Hearing the Voice of Truth by Amber J. Whatley

All my life I have struggled with surrendering to God.  I have been a stubborn, self-sufficient person.  I have run away from him, seeking other things to fill me up besides God.  I have avoided him and ignored him, tried to have a relationship with some other god, made myself God, made other people God, made things God, and found that none of it could give me what I needed.  I needed a redeemer, a comforter, a healer, and the one true sovereign God. 

Chapter 6:  This Is Your Wake-up Call by Debra A. Newell

The Lord has transformed me into a different woman today than the one I was seven years ago.  The process was not an easy one, as I did not initially trust anyone or anything.  Step by step, day by day, the Lord increased my faith and trust in Him.  It is an amazing testament to the Lord's love for me, and for each of us.  Not only that, but how totally awesome God is to be able to accomplish this work in me, and for anyone who asks. 

Chapter 7:  Many Blessings by Carolyn K. Metcalf

There was no doubt when we surveyed our vehicle at the accident impound lot, that we three had survived a fatal accident.  The Lord truly blessed us with a miracle in saving our lives that day.  We felt the Lord saved us because He had kingdom work He wanted us to do for Him, but we didn't know what it was at that time.

Story summaries by each author [link]

Meet the "Pearls Girls"


Biography of Editor and Authors

Debra A. Newell

Debra lives outside of Gainesville, Florida in a peaceful, pastoral lake setting she calls "the Sanctuary."  This home and acreage is a gift from her Heavenly Father and is a blessing He used to fully heal her from the ravages of multiple traumas.  Debra has one daughter, Darci, who lives close to her and is a constant source of encouragement. 

Not so many years ago, Debra thought perhaps the best of her life was over, that she would never be whole again, able to love, be loved, or do "normal" things.   Through grace and mercy, the love of her daughter, friends and family, the guiding hand of a loving Heavenly Father and a sweet surrender, her person and life has been transformed in testimony of the Lord's goodness. 

Writing is a passion that emerged at an early age - evidenced in poems, lyrics and short stories, though Debra never seriously pursued writing as an avid hobby or vocation.  Debra was first published while in college.  Somewhere along the way, writing receded to the background as other pursuits called for more time and attention - a family, advanced degrees, and professional enhancement.  After the traumas, writing once again emerged - first as a lifeline, then as a tool for healing, and, now, as a means for telling a story of God's grace to encourage others. 

A year and a half ago, at 9:15 on a Tuesday morning, the Lord said to her, "Resign, now."  Her position at the time was prestigious and high paying.  In obedience, she did resign, though having no clue what she would do thereafter to support herself and remain a contributing member of society. 

At that juncture, writing once again emerged as a mainstay, as did training in ministry.  Writing and ministering to women who have also been victims is her passion.   Debra and a colleague facilitate writing and healing workshops for a variety of audiences. 

In addition to contributing her story to this book and editing this collection, Debra is currently working on a novel, Jigsaw, forthcoming in later 2011.

Diana Beatty

Diana Beatty has had a passion for writing since junior high school, but at that time writing was for the purpose of shutting out the ever-mounting turmoil of her home life.  Professional writing was never a consideration until the birth of her sons.  Every writer has someone or something that triggers the passion or inspires creativity; for her it was her children.  As she says, "My sons have been my inspiration, they have been my hope, and above my greatest blessing." 

Although writing stories for her children was "just for fun", the seed of writing professionally was planted.  However, it wasn't until she delved into the painful memories of the past that she considered writing as more than just entertainment.  Her first attempt at writing for healing was a movie script she co-authored with her sister, Jo, called Shadow Lands.  The story compares the dreams and high expectations her parents had for their lives to the reality of the life they created by their choices.  "To write about personal loss, abuse and abandonment is risky," she says, "and certainly not a subject I wanted to reveal publicly.  However, if others can benefit; be lifted up and encouraged, then it is worth the risk."

Karen Haskell

Karen lives in the rural community of Melrose, Florida with her husband of twelve years, Dale. Here, she enjoys the serenity of lake living and the beauty of God's creation. One of her favorite things is spending time with her three grandchildren.

Her life today is vastly different than the one you read about in her testimony. She believes the scripture that best sums up the moral of her story is from Psalm 119:71, "It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees." She hopes her story will bring encouragement to others who may be going through similar trials and sufferings.

Eunice V. Johnson

Eunice knows well the challenges of taking God at His word and stepping out, from even before she was a committed Christian.  Her story recounts succumbing to many of the challenges and temptations any young woman faces when entirely on her own for the first time in her life. In April 1977, however, Eunice was brought to the end of her spiral downward into a life of sin when she chose to receive forgiveness and her new life in Jesus after He had lovingly wooed her many years.

Today almost thirty years later, after many detours, wrong turns, false starts in her life of faith since choosing Jesus, Eunice can speak of the faithfulness of God "through it all."  She would like to encourage the readers with these words: "God continues to prove Himself good and doing good as well as sufficient and loving. As I am willing to believe and act on these Truths, He changes me from glory to glory. So, if we-- you readers and I-- can learn to receive and live each day given by the Lord, we can be full of joy, pleasing Him with our trusting and grateful hearts!"

Carolyn K. Metcalf

Carolyn is a wife, mother and grandmother of 14.  She and her husband, Don, live in a small mid-western Kansas town, close to where they each grew up.  She is busy with grandchildren, extended family and church leadership. 

Writing is not a "first love" for Carolyn, though she enjoys sharing her story here for the readers.  "Life is not over until your work here on earth is finished" is a philosophy she lives by.  By grace, the Lord keeps providing "assignments," and she gladly accepts.

Amber J. Whatley

Amber is thrilled to have her story included in this publication.  Amber earned a Masters degree in voice performance at the University of Florida and has performed in operas, musical theatre, orchestral concerts, and solo recitals.  However, what she is truly passionate about is worshiping God and building up the church.  She currently lives in Marietta, Georgia and worships at Vineyard Community Church.  Amber is excited to see where her adventure will take her next.

Melody Wilson

Melody is a wife and mother of 4, living in a small mid-western town with her husband, and family on a small acreage.  She is a graduate of the University of Kansas, and has a Master's degree from the University of Missouri, Kansas City.  Melody has served on several professional and non-professional boards over the years.  Currently, she has made the choice to be a stay-at-home mom.

Melody has used journaling as a tool to help her process through tough spots in the past.  When first approached about contributing to this project, she hesitated.  She wanted to keep the horrible part of her life a secret and in the past.
However, the Lord prompted her that there were women who needed to know her story - the horror, hope and redemption - so they too could be encouraged to overcome.  She was obedient and the readers are the benefactors.


Share your story 

We invite you to tell your story and share it with other readers on the website. Please note that your personal contribution on this website will then be considered as property of the domain name owner.  To submit your story for consideration for publication on the website, or inclusion in a later edition of the project, please include all of your contact information (name, address, phone and email address) and email the story to: 

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Wounded Healer Stories

Wounded Healers share their stories of restoration and redemption. Click here to read their stories


Prayer Needs

We also invite you to share a prayer need with our prayer warriors. You may confidentially submit your prayer need by e-mailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it