What Cannot Be Lost

How Jesus Holds Us Together When Life Is Falling Apart

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A personal story of holding on to faith in Christ in the face of loss.

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Author Melissa Zaldivar talks honestly about losing everything that once defined her and how God used unexpected opportunities, like working at Orchard House, where Louisa May Alcott wrote Little Women, to spark a journey of working through her grief and encountering the all-sufficient love of Christ.

Weaving inspiring passages of Scripture and insights from Little Women into her personal story, Melissa encourages readers with her discovery that it’s when we have nothing left to offer that we can receive God’s love the most. And that’s something that can never be lost. 

Readers will be reassured that God will meet them in the midst of their mess and urged to look to him for help, comfort, and strength.

A great gift for those whose faith is being tested in the face of a loss of any kind—a loved one, a job, or a relationship.

Product details


  • Chapter 1: The Process of Losing | Genesis 3; Psalm 23
  • Chapter 2: By Choice or by Force | 1 Peter 4:19; 5:7
  • Chapter 3: One Day At A Time | Matthew 6: 5-15; James 2:14-26
  • Chapter 4: Getting to the Root | John 20:24-29
  • Chapter 5: The Beach | Genesis 1
  • Chapter 6: Honestly | 1 Kings 8; John 16
  • Chapter 7: Finding Our Footing | John 6:60-69
  • Chapter 8: What Cannot Be Lost | Isaiah 43; Hosea 11


Contributors Melissa Zaldivar, Bethany Barnard
ISBN 9781784987640
Format Paperback
First published October 2022
Dimensions 5.3" x 8.5" x 0.5"
Case quantity 50
Language English
Pages 160
Publisher The Good Book Company

Amanda Bible Williams

Co-founder, She Reads Truth; General Editor, She Reads Truth Bible

An unexpected combination of biblical truth and literary commentary, "What Cannot Be Lost" exposes the rawness of loss and longing while, at the same time, applying the only effective salve. Simply put, it’s one of the most honest books on grief I’ve ever read.

Karen Swallow Prior

Author, On Reading Well: Finding the Good Life through Great Books

The things that happen to us in life—whether things of gain or loss—become meaningful through the stories we tell about those things. The story Melissa Zaldivar tells in these pages finds meaning through the frame of the beautiful stories she has immersed herself in: the stories of Louisa May Alcott, the stories of people she knows and loves, and the truest and best stories of all—those of the Bible. "What Cannot Be Lost" is a beautiful testimony to the power good stories have to make our lives better, even (or especially) when we face great loss.

Lisa Whittle

Author, The Hard Good; Bible Teacher; Podcast Host

Good writing is observation, and Melissa Zaldivar does it best. She’s careful with these tender stories of loss and wise in showing how they weave together. What Cannot Be Lost is a stunning book for every heart that aches to make sense of grief and longs to believe in a beautiful future.

Customer reviews


“Courage and Candor”

Where is God in our grief? In What Cannot Be Lost, Melissa Zaldivar shares how Jesus holds us together when life Is falling apart.

Loss and Grief

In just over 150 pages, this book tells Zaldivar’s personal story of loss and grief. The loss of a job was just the beginning. Zaldivar would later grieve together with and eventually lose the life of Jill, her beloved friend from college. The book is raw, honest, and strangely inspiring.

When Zaldivar seemed to have hit rock-bottom, she found her faith to be on solid ground. She found God’s love in Jesus. And while the season was difficult, she writes with warmth and strength.

Courage and Candor

This book is not a Bible study, but Zaldivar brings Scripture to life in a way that only someone who has tasted its truth can do. She is wonderful with words, and tells her stories with courage and candor.

What I found most interesting was how Zaldivar shared her story along with insights from her work at the Orchard House — where Louisa May Alcott wrote and set Little Women. It gave a timeless, classic, but very real and relatable aspect to her story.

Anger and Sadness

I was most moved by a sentence that Zaldivar had spoke to her pastor when she was at a low point in her life. I won’t quote it here, because I feel it was most powerful in the context of the book, but I saw how open, honest anger is sometimes what we need to bring to Jesus. And when we can see the connection between our anger and our sadness, it makes the love of our Lord that much sweeter.

This book is like looking at an open wound, and seeing it being stitched back together by the Savior. For those who are being tested in their faith, this book will be a balm. For anyone who reads, it will reassure you of Christ’s compassion for the hurting. We can bring our grief to God. He will meet us there.

I received a media copy of What Cannot Be Lost and this is my honest review.

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What Cannot Be Lost | Melissa Zaldivar, Bethany Barnard | $17.99 $15.29