"God let us go broke.

"Dead broke. We got caught in a horrible swirl of depressed housing markets, of sagging businesses, of long periods of underemployment and then unemployment, of debt from uncovered medical expenses. All of this hit at once, leaving us wondering where on earth we?d land, dependent on the kindness of family and friends to even attempt to make ends meet.

"And yet, when I asked God to let me find him (really find him) and to know him (really know him) and to see him and smell him and taste him and sense his presence and his wondrousness all over the darned place like I had as a kid, he broke me. Clean open. Snapped and shattered."

In this way Caryn Rivadenaria invites us to join her on a frank journey into both a financial and spiritual desert. She reflects openly on the struggles so many of us can identify with. And she models with integrity how she continued to pursue God even through these dark days. In these pages you will find a safe place to explore your brokenness and to seek solace.


Caryn Rivadeneira is the acclaimed author of ten books for both children and adults, including her most recent, Generous Kids series, which includes the board book, Mine!, the picture book, It’s Not Fair!, and the early-reader chapter book, The Wrong Shoes (all from Beaming Books).


While Caryn has dreamed of and worked toward being a writer since childhood, Caryn’s career has twisted and turned along the way. After graduating from Calvin College with a degree in English and Journalism, Caryn launched her decades-long tenure as an editor—first at various magazines, including Engineering and Mining Journal (don’t let your subscription lapse!) and then Marriage Partnership and Christian Parenting Today magazines.


After the birth of her oldest son, Caryn left the world of full-time employment and joined the mighty ranks of fearless freelancers. During this time, Caryn edited and managed several professional websites and edited books and articles for select publishers and clients.


Throughout it all, Caryn maintained the mind, spirit and worldview of a writer. Since becoming a professional writer during her college years, Caryn has published thousands of articles, essays, and interviews. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, Christianity Today, Sojourners, Relevant, Aleteia, and many more.  


Today, in addition to continuing to write and edit, Caryn serves on staff at Elmhurst Christian Reformed Church and keeps a fairly regular speaking schedule.


Caryn is a proud member of INK: A Creative Collective and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Caryn lives in the near-west suburbs of Chicago with her husband, her three kids, and her beloved rescue pit bull.  

Visit Caryn at Find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. But note: Caryn is more likely to reply on word-centric sites.