God speaks to me.

It started when I was just 13-years-old on the way home from my father’s funeral. In fact, we got into an argument. Well, to be completely honest, I really just let God have it.


I was in the back seat of my mother’s car demanding that God tell me why I had lost my father. “Why is this happening to me? Why me?” I yelled quietly in my mind. I wanted answers. Life had already been tough. My parents divorced when I was only 3-years-old, and I had rarely seen my father through the years. Our financial situation had hit rock bottom at this time and never really stabilized. And if matters couldn’t get any worse, then I lost my father for good. The fantasy of my parents reconciling and everything going back to normal was no longer an option.


The pain of his death was literally unbearable.

I could not breathe.

I could not sleep.

I could not eat.

I was maniac with fear.

All I could do was think about the fear of losing him over and over in my head. I wondered, now who would protect us? Who would help raise my brother and me? Who would provide for us? Could my mother do this all alone?


Questions were flying through my head like missiles, firing one after the other so fast that I could not make sense of anything. I was fighting for survival, and I was confused about my God who I felt had failed me. Confused and depleted, I continued to scream, “Why, God? Why?”


Suddenly the sound of our car’s muffler vanished. I became still as I gazed out of the back seat window watching the white lines on the highway pass one by one. In the quiet, I heard a voice. “Your father’s death was not in vain. It happened for a reason. I’ll carry you through this, just remember that you were chosen.” And just like that, the sound of our car’s muffler came back and I was snapped back into reality.


I spent years chasing all types of dreams. I was lucky enough to have much success in a variety of endeavors, but there was always a part of me that was not completely fulfilled. I always thought back to those words on the way home from my father’s funeral, “You were chosen.” What did it mean?


The curiosity only was fulfilled when I ran across another fatherless daughter. I always felt called to get to know them and their story. However, there was a part of me that feared doing this work on a bigger scale. Did I really want to relive my pain in order to help others? If it was to help others, would it be worth it? These thoughts were both overwhelming and exhilarating. I could see the possibilities ahead to change lives, but my own fear still held me back. In those weaker moments those words would resurface again, “You were chosen.”


When I finally decided to face my fear, I realized I was in control of turning my pain into purpose. After years of research, interviews, and diligent work, I now consider myself to be the voice of fatherless daughters all over the world. I am the founder of “The Fatherless Daughter Project: A Book. A Non-profit. A Documentary.” My book co-written with Dr. Karin Luise, The Fatherless Daughter Project: Understanding Our Losses and Reclaiming Our Lives was just released in June 2016 (Avery-PenguinRandomHouse)  


As a life coach, I’ve met many people searching for their life’s purpose. Often times, purpose is given to us in a way that we least expect it. Sometimes we are chosen to do more than we could ever imagine because we have suffered the unimaginable.


Wondering if your pain is your purpose? Find out through these 5 soul-fire signs:


  1. It’s The Hardest Thing You’ve Ever Been Through.

Our pain is meant to heal, and through that pain comes valuable lessons. We each have a unique story, and that story can be used to help others. It is through pain that we find our passion and power, and that is how we turn it into beautiful purpose.


  1. It Was Chosen For You.

I know you want and have tried to ignore it, but no matter how hard you try, it will not go away.

Why? Because it was chosen for you. Predestined.

How do you know? If you are reading this and your purpose is getting all giddy.

You know what I’m talking about. She (and yes, I can call it that) will find her way into your conversations, she’ll be your avenue to giving poignant advice, and she’ll occupy your time at all hours of the day. She’s apart of you.

Relax and lean into her. These repetitive things are your reminder to use your pain to help yourself and to help others.


  1. It Won’t Let You Ignore It.

She’s not going away. This happened to you for a reason.

Nothing else will give you the same feeling as your calling. You can keep looking into other vocations, but nothing else will work or feel right.

Just like in my case, every time I heard someone was fatherless I couldn’t help but to reach out to them, get to know them, and try and help them.

I did not choose it. It was chosen for me.


  1. You Are Already An Expert On It.

It happened for a reason, and so your experiences led you to self-teaching. You had to find out how and why to feel better.

And what better person to mentor another in the same type of pain than you? Give someone else the tools that helped you. Dive into your calling and bring your soul to its purpose through others. Inspire them so they too can beat this and get on with really living and not just existing.


  1. It Feels Right.

If it feels right, do it. The accolades will come in the form of healing and you’ll soon settle in to your purpose. Others will wonder how you did it, and they will want to follow suit.


Listen to your heart. It is where God speaks to you.