DANVILLE — No matter what you’re going through, author Sharon Parker hopes you will find encouragement and inspiration in “Destiny on the Rise.”
“This book is relatable to everyone,” she said. “It will get them through most issues.”
Parker, 53, self-published the book through All in All Publishing based in Nashville, Tenn. It contains 26 poems written throughout her life.
“All are different and all have a message,” she said. “My hope is that they will have a positive influence on people.”
One of her biggest fans is Jaya Dye, who works with Head Start through the East Central Illinois Community Action Agency. Parker also is an early Head Start teacher.
Dye wrote a poem about Parker, titled “What Kind of Woman,” which is included in the book. On the next page, Parker responded with “Blessed to be a Blessing.”
When Dye found out her poem was in the book, she said, “I was elated and shocked. I was humbled, too.”
She’s known Parker about three years, but it seems like the two have known each other a lifetime, she said, describing herself as Parker’s “spiritual daughter.”
The poem was Dye’s first attempt at poetry, she said, adding, “It just flowed. God gave me every word.”
As for “Destiny,” Dye said, “It doesn’t matter where you are in your life, you can find inspiration in each poem.”
She also remarked that even when you go through turmoil, God is there to see you through.
That’s a recurring theme through Parker’s book. She survived an abusive relationship in the past.
“When I didn’t know what to do, I turned to God and everything was better,” she said.
Another theme is the importance of forgiveness. She said, “Forgive others so you can have peace.”
Take that negativity from the past and turn it around, Parker said. Consider that everything that happens, even the bad things, influences who you are today.
“I was in an abusive relationship and God delivered me,” she said. “I was able to forgive and find peace.”
Her three sons, now grown, saw what she was going through when they were children. She hopes the poems send a message to them to forgive, move on and use their gifts for a positive purpose.
As for the book’s title, the book’s back cover says: "'Destiny on the Rise' … illustrates the triumphs and victories led by God, thereby showing that destiny is sure to be successful in the end. If ever doubtful of positive growth in your lives, keep God in the center of your progress, place destiny into your hands, and rise above the situation.”
Parker started writing poetry in her early 20s, and kept all of her writings. For years, she researched the process of publishing a book. Then, when she learned a co-worker had published a book, that opened the door for her.
“God inspired me to write it,” she recalled. “God’s hand is in it.”
One poem, “From Past to Present,” is about her mother. Two are about her sons, “Guess Who’s Which” and “The Realization.”
Parker isn’t sure if she’ll write more books, but she’s considering writing a children’s book, as she likes to make up stories for the Head Start children.
A native of Kentucky, Parker graduated from Henderson Community College and wrote articles for the local newspaper. She has lived in Danville seven years. Her husband, John Parker III, is from Danville.
She is a member of New Jerusalem Church.