After contracting polio as an infant and misdiagnosed, author Vaneetha Risner lived with widespread paralysis and fear she would be treated differently her entire life. Walking Through Fire: A Memoir of Loss and Redemption (Thomas Nelson January 2021) is an eye-opening account of one woman's strength to face suffering head on in order to experience peace and offer hope to others struggling with similar experiences.
As a child, Risner lived in and out of the hospital for ten years and after each stay, she would return to a life filled with bullying. It wasn't until she became a Christian at age X when things got easier. She experienced carefree college days, a dream job in Boston and an MBA from Stanford where she met and married a fellow classmate.
But it wasn't long before Riser's life began to unravel again. She experienced four miscarriages. Her son died because of a doctor's mistake. She was diagnosed with post-polio syndrome, meaning she would likely become a quadriplegic. And then her husband betrayed her and moved out, leaving her to raise two adolescent daughters alone.
Although this wasn't the abundant life she thought God had promised her, Risner discovered everything she experienced was designed to draw her closer to Christ and learned "that intimacy with God in suffering can be breathtakingly beautiful."
Vaneetha Risner is a writer and speaker who is passionate about helping people find hope in the midst of suffering. Part of her story is losing her infant son, which was the inspiration for the hit song "Held," recorded by Natalie Grant. She is also the author of The Scars That Have Shaped Me: How God Meets Us in Suffering. Before she started writing, Vaneetha had a career in business and received her BS from University of Virginia's McIntire School of Commerce and her MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business. Vaneetha is married to Joel and has two grown daughters, Katie and Kristi.