Welcome to a story of the heart

In my family, we have always loved the story of my mom’s God Box, her little container of dozens of notes covered in her familiar scrawl—her personal petitions on our behalf. Mom loved so openly and felt so deeply that she took everyone’s cares into her hands from family to friends and even strangers. Whenever my Dad or my brother Jack or I had a concern or a wish or a worry, Mom would write it down as a letter beginning “Dear God” and she’d simply present what was in her heart. She’d fold the scrap of paper again and again until it was really small and then place it in her God Box. Discovering 20 years of boxes after losing her was like finding her all over again.

I know that I could have kept these notes tucked away, for just our family to sift through on holidays. I could have ‘minded my own business’ as Mom might encourage. But I knew my mother’s mind and heart so well: she always wanted to help others. If by telling her story, I can spread her little ritual for relieving stress and gaining the resolution that only comes from letting go…then I will have taken her gift forward, as a daughter, as a woman, as her best friend.

So, today, I am beginning the journey of the God Box project. I am opening the boxes and my heart and stepping into a world beyond my everyday business life, where words like “God” and “mother” and “daughter” and “love” and “faith” can sometimes feel out of place. But “The God Box” is about living our lives with compassion and hope and admitting that sometimes we all need a place to give over our cares and find release and peace. I hope you will come along.

 

Mom, here’s to you. Let the story begin.

share the love:


{ 2 comments }

Kelley Highway

February 22, 2012

I first read your Real Simple article in December 2009. It was my daughter’s magazine, so I did a no-no and photocopied it… tear-drips and all, splashed on its pages.

I have spoken to women about your mother’s God Boxes. I’ve read your article aloud to probably hundreds, too. Your memory of a praying mother has forever impacted my life, and now so many others!

I’m excited to join you, Mary Lou, on your God Box journey. I love you for extending your personal invitation!

Blessings and prayers,
Kelley of Kelley Highway

Carolyn Lyon

May 2, 2013

Bless you for sharing in this world where God is now kept in the closet! This is a wonderful idea for kids as well as adults.

Leave a comment



please answer this equation – because spam bots can't do math......yet

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

sample chapter
Enjoy a free selected chapter from The God Box.
Download

reading group guide
Invite your book club to join this engaging conversation about Mary Lou’s book.
Download

printable mini cards
Share these mini note cards or write notes for your God Box.
Download

mobile app
The God Box app makes it easy to write notes on the go.
Download

giving back
Ask how Mary Lou can support your local cause with the book and play.
Learn more

 

Come meet Mary Lou and experience The God Box: A Daughter's Story at a venue near you.
Learn more


press & praise
View All
  • "The courage and wisdom from the messages left in her mother’s God Box will inspire you to create a God Box of your own."
    – GAIL SHEEHY, AUTHOR OF "PASSAGES IN CAREGIVING"
  • "What a beautiful and profoundly human book....I will keep The God Box in my heart for a long, long time."
    – LAURA SCHROFF, AUTHOR OF "THE INVISIBLE THREAD"
  • "A beautiful story of love, faith and family. It reads like an intimate, familiar prayer."
    – ELIZABETH GILBERT, AUTHOR OF "EAT, PRAY, LOVE"
  • "In the slips of paper that carry this sweet story forward, we can see the love in our own families and the great possibilities of simple faith."
    – JEFFREY ZASLOW, COAUTHOR OF "THE LAST LECTURE"
  • "A wonderful legacy…Keeping a God Box is an incredibly moving and hopeful ritual that we should all consider adding into our daily lives."
    – REBA, MUSICIAN, AUTHOR, ACTRESS
  • "Mary Lou Quinlan shares her mother’s handmade and heartfelt gift of how to persist, believe and move forward with joy."
    – LEE WOODRUFF, AUTHOR OF "IN AN INSTANT"
  • "Mary Lou Quinlan has told the story of her mother in a way that entertains, moves and inspires. The thoughts about life and values will stick with you forever."
    – JIM LEHRER, EXECUTIVE EDITOR OF PBS NEWSHOUR

The God Box App is shiny new and ready to welcome your cares

December 15, 2017
by Mary Lou Quinlan

Since The God Box book was published in the spring of 2012, so many readers have told me that they started their own God Boxes. I love hearing stories of children creating God Boxes and married couples joining their prayer and cares in a family box. (And my mother would be thrilled!)  A 'real' God box is a constant reminder that we are not in control and that letting go is the first step to finding comfort, hope and relief for life's worries. But did you know that many thousands have gone virtual with their God boxes? To help the many busy ...

View More