HURON — Why do bad things happen to good people? That’s a question Huron author Ron Weidner looks at in his new book, “A Room Full of Tears I Never Cried.”
“Tragedy comes to all of us,” said Weidner, whose father was killed by lightning on their farm several months before he was born. “Throughout eternity people have asked why bad things happen, and they question where God was in all of this. If we allow ourselves to drink from the world’s well of bitterness, it only produces more anger and more disappointment.”
His story started in poverty, with a grief-stricken mother who struggled to provide a stable life for her children.
Each chapter in his book ends with a brief section called, “Where was God?”
“The reality of life is that when going through really tough times, it is hard to look at the big picture as God sees it,” he said. “As a much wiser, older person, I can now look over each struggle and see God’s hand at work.”
Weidner, who turned 77 on Oct. 22, and his wife, Paulette, have two children, Tracy Weidner of Hull, Iowa, and Lea (Keith) Ulvestad, who lives in Huron with their three children, Andrew, Bentley, both grown, and Ava, who is in seventh grade at James Valley Christian School.
His wife underwent cancer surgery to remove the mastoid bone just below her ear in November 1991, which resulted in a constant ringing in her ears and nerve damage.
“The 29-plus years she’s had to live with it has taken a cumulative toll on her mental stability and her ability to cope with it,” Weidner said. “We have tried many, many things, but there’s been no complete healing. The only thing is to medicate.”
Weidner said he’s been told by many people over the years to put his story in book form to share, and five years ago he decided to put pencil to paper.
“I say the title of my book, most of the chapter titles and much of the narrative is somewhat outside myself,” he said. “I’m not by nature that expressive. But when I said yes, the chapter titles started flowing. The Lord was giving me what I had to say, and to remember back to my earliest childhood.
“I guess I would say it was therapeutic in the sense that I have much more empathy for my mother and for the things my brothers and sisters went through. All of that was an emotional cathartic experience for me.”
Weidner said one song stood out in his mind as he was writing his book — “He Was There All Along.”
“He was there all the time, but when I look back and see the people God put in place to help us survive, that’s what I’m grateful for.”
Weidner has worn many hats in his lifetime — teacher, counselor, coach, farmer, inventor, insurance agent and adjuster, husband and father. Although he’s not ordained, he does ministry work and has preached in several area churches.
“I’ve learned that there are a lot of candle lighters, those who come to shine a little light in the dark corners of others lives that are living in difficulty,” he added. “So I want to be more of a candle lighter to those I come in contact with.
“I’m thankful for the chance to live that life, grateful for being called to write my story, and grateful for the Spirit giving me the words to say,” Weidner said. “It all makes sense to me now.”
To order a copy of Weidner’s book, call him at 352-7788 or 354-7788. His email address is [email protected]