Where the Colors Blend: An Authentic Journey Through Spiritual Doubt and Despair ... and a Beautiful Arrival at Hope

Where the Colors Blend: An Authentic Journey Through Spiritual Doubt and Despair ... and a Beautiful Arrival at Hope

by Stephen Copeland


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In Where the Colors Blend , Stephen Copeland’s self-discovery and God-discovery is told over a period of six years in the context of an annual retreat to the Blue Ridge Mountains in Roanoke, Virginia, where an obscure, forty-year-old church softball tournament takes place each summer to raise funds for mission work in Paraguay. In stepping into these stories, and sharing them with the reader, Stephen simultaneously journeys deeper within himself, discovering the divine in the process and taking readers deep into the throes of doubt, deconstruction, and depression. But it’s there, in the darkness, that an authentic hope finds him. Throughout the narrative, readers experience with Stephen a number of paradigm shifts in the areas of:

  • Spirituality: from exhausting oneself trying to get close to God to simply abiding: awakening to who we already are at the core of our beings as children of God.
  • Psychology: from suppressing emotions, pains, and insecurities to curiously and non-judgmentally exploring them.
  • Relationships: from trying to change others or silently judging them to accepting others as they are and learning from those who are most different than ourselves: abandoning ignorance and arrogance.
  • Art, writing, and work: from being taunted by internal demands and a relentless pursuit of perfection to simply enjoying the gift of the process

Stephen's present-tense narrative, mysteriously unfolding all the way, is free-thinking and free-flowing, swinging from humor to complex theology, from someone else’s story to sudden introspectiveness and application, creating a unique experience for readers as it challenges them to adopt their own lifestyle of introspection and contemplation.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781683509677
Publisher: Morgan James Publishing
Publication date: 11/27/2018
Pages: 292
Sales rank: 299,894
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Stephen Copeland is a writer and storyteller. He is a former staff writer and columnist at Sports Spectrum Magazine , a national faith-based sports magazine, and has also been published in Christianity Today. He blogs regularly for Franciscan Media and is a contributor to the St. Anthony Messenger. Though he has co-authored nearly a dozen books — helping others to share their stories — he released his first book in his own voice, Where the Colors Blend , in November 2018. He obtained a bachelor's degree in journalism and Bible from Grace College and is a member of the International Thomas Merton Society. Stephen resides in Nashville, TN.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"This is an uncommonly wonderful read, written in uncommon perspective, for the common in us all; our humanity!" - Wm Paul Young, New York Times bestselling author of The Shack.

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Where the Colors Blend: An Authentic Journey Through Spiritual Doubt and Despair ... and a Beautiful Arrival at Hope 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
dianeha12 More than 1 year ago
I knew immediately that I would love this book. As a young artist who also moved far away from home and everything familiar, this book hit me very personally. Stephen Copeland does such a wonderful job of explaining the most complex feelings with the easiest-to-understand language, as he navigates his own story and posits deep questions that we all have asked, or should be asking, about our world and our experience in it. That said, my favorite part of this book was the selection of poetry interspersed throughout. I'm not usually one to choose poetry over prose, but in this case I think I just might. Buy this book. Experience it. Relish it. I know I did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Stephen Copeland takes us on his journey of spiritual and self discovery through stories of, not only his life, but of the lives of Paraguayan missionaries and the softball tournament that helps support them. The authenticity of the writing is refreshing and helped me to take an honest look at things in my life that need fine tuning. The book is interspersed with stories of heartbreak, of love, of friendship, and of God’s beautiful work in and through His people. The word pictures that Copeland paints are enough to make me want to travel to Paraguay and to the Blue Ridge Mountains in Roanoke where the tournament is held to see the beauty of where the colors blend. One of my favorite things about Cope’s writing is that he adds humor at the perfect times to make his story even more relatable. I would definitely recommend reading this book and be prepared to laugh, shed a few tears, and be in awe of, not only all that God can do, but also what others are willing to sacrifice to share God’s love with others.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Where the Colors Blends" is a brilliantly written and powerful book. At one point the author says they entered their journey feeling alone but by the end feels alive, and I think the same can be said for the journey through this book. The author beautifully weaves in and out of his personal story and the story of a dedicated missionary in Paraguay. The characters in "Where the Colors Blend" are charming, funny, and very moving. I found the author's narrative to be extremely relatable and it helped with my personal spiritual growth and religious healing. Readers will find this unifying book refreshing, unique, and powerful. Therefore, I highly recommend checking out "Where the Colors Blend. "
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read a lot of Christian literature and often times finish reading a book a feel like I am a terrible person for not doing more and for not feeling like I’m at the mountain top of my faith constantly. This author demonstrates something so much different from that. In “Where Colors Blend,” the author asks questions that many Christians are afraid to ask because the Church makes those questions seem off limits. This book demonstrates a true honesty and vulnerability that seems to be non-existent in much of Christian literature today. This type of writing allows us to be more open with our own insecurities as Christians and help us truly begin to heal through the shame and loneliness that we are afraid to admit. In the end this book challenged me to look deeper into my own humanity as well as those around me and look at it through a refreshing lens. I am excited to read more from this author and will definitely be recommending this book to friends and family.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Copeland takes us through instances and experiences in his life that we all deal with. The journey through life is beautifully written about and discussed in a manner that will reach out to all of its readers. As the writer, Copeland truly pulls in his audience through the entirety of this book while taking them on a written experience that will give a new perspective on life and the daily grind that we all experience. This is a must read for anyone looking to expand their faith or feels they need a jump start back into their spiritual journey.
JoshuaLittle More than 1 year ago
"Where the Colors Blend" serves as a vulnerable, genuine & beautifully-written invitation to wrestle with many of life's most challenging and existential questions. Throughout his writing, Copeland encourages us to trade in our bondage of guilt & performance-based faith for union with Christ - and to hear the voice of Jesus say to each of us, "You are my beloved." This book models & encourages honesty & self-reflection through the work of the Holy Spirit. If you have ever felt tired, weary, skeptical, cynical or out-of-answers in your Christian faith, this book will leave you encouraged that you are not alone & that in the midst of the valleys you experience, there is a loving God who joins you in the valley.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Now that I have finished this book, I have asked my wife to read it as well. I want her to understand the challenges I face daily in my internal battle. I have never been able to communicate them well to her and this book will help her understand me more and strengthen our marriage. No other book has expressed the turmoil, challenge, doubt, loneliness, longing and hope I feel every day like this one. It asks hard questions, messy questions that are normally 'off limits' for Christians. It bucks the status quo of guilt, works, and shame that comes with American Christianity at times and opens up a world of possible real unity with Christ and offers the hope of real peace in Him. This book encourages self reflection, healing, and honesty. It encourages building meaningful relationships that require you to be vulnerable (which lead to deeper and more meaningful friendships anyway!). I'll be sharing this book with all of my friends and family because I truly believe we can all benefit from the reminders the Holy Spirit has left for us in this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Where the Colors Blend is truly a book written looking through the lens into the author’s personal journey to find God’s presence in the midst of his own chaotic and challenging struggles. Through friendships, tragedies, humor, and spiritual insights, the author tells a story in real time of his own personal journey to find God. The book will lead you through an array of emotions, from heartwarming recollections, to tears of empathy, and awesome appreciation for all of creation. This book has something for everyone. I would highly recommend to anyone.
adamp21 More than 1 year ago
Where The Colors Blend is unlike any book I have ever read. It is a unique combination of humor, tragedy, enlightenment, and inspiration. The book is written in real time, and the author does a fantastic job of making you feel like you are truly riding shotgun with him throughout the entire six-year journey. I feel that everyone, no matter their background or experience, can relate to this book in some way, and it will have a profound impact on the way one views life and relationships. I will be diving into this one again and I highly recommend giving it a read.