I discovered Hannah Brencher right after I graduated from college. I picked up a copy of her first book, If You Find This Letter, and it felt like she had written it for me. Hannah’s words and raw honesty about how she found purpose during a hard time in her life by leaving love letters to strangers around New York City was a huge source of encouragement and wisdom for me.
The thing about Hannah Brencher is, once you hear her words, there’s no going back. Since that first introduction, I’ve followed her blog, watched her TED talk, have participated in several of her webinars, and even seen her speak at a conference in Jackson. So I had no doubt that her new book was going to have an equally special place in my heart.
Part memoir, part pep-talk, Come Matter Here is about how to be present in a world obsessed with highlight reels and instant success. Hannah shares her heart with the same rich, honest voice her followers love as she recounts moving to Atlanta and all the struggles that come with being a twenty-something in a new place.
From battling severe depression and walking out of the darkness, to finding community and the trials of dating apps, Hannah’s story is refreshingly authentic and relatable. By sharing her own struggles and how she got through them with the help of faith, friends, therapy, and lots of coffee, Hannah is able to help guide others through similar situations.
With grace and wit, Hannah discusses how to dig deep in relationships, how to walk with faith through the valleys, how to show up and stay for people, how to find a church, and so much more. This book contains a plethora of life-altering truths, but I think the overall theme can be summed up in this: Build out of love, not fear.
“Fear builds a road map when we aren’t looking,” Hannah writes. “Fear can either keep us standing in one place, or it can propel us toward something better.”
Reading this book felt like listening to the advice of the big sister I never had. I absolutely love Hannah’s writing style and each chapter had something that spoke directly to me. I love how her friends and the people she encountered became characters that contributed bits of truth throughout her journey. You can’t help but love Hannah and see yourself in her story.
I also appreciate Hannah’s ability to talk about her faith and to communicate how God showed up in various ways. I especially like the “Steal This Prayer” section that allows the reader to reflect after each chapter.
Come Matter Here is perfect for anyone who is tired of letting fear write the narrative and is ready to fully occupy the space they’re in. With so many frame-worthy quotes of wisdom, you’ll want to highlight and underline the heck out of this book! I will leave you with some of my favorites:
- “Some days aren’t about what you get done; they’re about who you empower.”
- “When you only focus on the life you project to the world, you start living halfheartedly. It becomes nearly impossible to be content with the life you have.”
- “I’m learning that life isn’t about the destinations we can boast about getting to; it’s about all the walking in between that feels pointless when you try to take a picture of it because no one will understand it like you do. It’s the in between stuff that fleshes out a story—gives it guts and transformation.”
- “I think our purpose is to just show up to the moment we’ve been invited into, the moments other people ask us to come and inhabit with them. We get to be mile markers and cheerleaders. We get to hold signs. We get to have so much purpose when we just look around.”