“I have read the full account of Caleb’s life in The Caleb Years, and I’m glad I did. Especially, I appreciated that David didn’t offer saccharine answers. He showed the raw, up-and-down vulnerability that always accompanies such a trial.”

- Phillip YanceyNew York Times best-selling author of The Jesus I Never Knew

What’s So Amazing About Grace and dozens of other books

 

 

 

 

"Caleb was born with several undiagnosed congenital anomalies and endured ten major surgeries. His father writes the story, saturated with both pain and prayer, but remarkably without a trace of bitterness. His marvelous witness written with such skill, crafted in language honest and vivid, will not fail to deepen the faith and joy of all who trust God."

- Eugene H. Peterson, Professor Emeritus of Spiritual Theology, Regent College, best-selling author and

Translator of The Message Bible

 

 

 

 

"David Ingerson's compelling portrayal of a father’s heart agonizing for his suffering son, desperate for God’s intervention, graphically demonstrates faith forged in the crucible. This is what utter dependence on God looks like, and a story that will challenge all of us."

- Mark Batterson, New York Times bestselling author of The Circle Maker

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Following this father's painful footsteps is to walk on sacred ground. But God has gifted him to eschew the maudlin. Because he never manipulates his readers, you're left free to apply the lessons he learned to your own experiences."

- Joel Belz, Founder, World Magazine

 

  

 

 

"Military families understand adversity. When you add faith in Christ Jesus to the battle for a little boy's life, you define inspiration. In this great story Caleb and his family will become new spiritual heroes in your life that affirm the "battle is already won."

- Charles C. Baldwin, Chaplain, Major General, USAF (Retired), former Chief of US Air Force Chaplains

 

 

 

 

"In The Caleb Years, David Ingerson has written a powerful book that will resonate with every parent, and speak to the heart of every person who has suffered through tragedy and wrestled with their faith. His account is relayed with a depth of insight and authenticity that can only be known by one who has limped through the darkest of valleys and emerged with an iron embrace of the love and sovereignty of God. The Ingerson family's story will inspire you to savor every precious moment with your loved ones, and it will help you develop the kind of eternal perspective that sustains and satisfies the human heart."

- J. Michael Johnson, Esq., Constitutional law attorney, Recipient of the Southern Baptist Convention

and Family Research Council “Faith, Family & Freedom” awards

 

 

 

 

"In the Caleb Years, David Ingerson has written a profoundly moving account of finding hope in life's darkest hour. It will speak to anyone whose life experiences have caused them to question God. Ingerson's painfully real journey from grief to gratefulness will help the reader find light for his personal situation no matter how deep the darkness."

- Richard Exley, best-selling author of more than thirty-three books, including, When You Lose Someone You Love

 

 

 

 

"When God calls us to walk a journey beyond our human strength and to rely totally on him are we ready? The Caleb Years is such a journey which will reach into your deepest emotions. This is a must read for any parent who is willing to say 'your will be done' Mighty God. When God said, "My grace is sufficient", he meant it and it is lived out in the lives of David and Kathy Ingerson in this book about their son, Caleb. What an amazing journey that highlights the deep human emotions in a time of incredible stress."

- Dr. Gordon Donoho, President/CEO, Christians in Action Missions International

 

 

 

 

"It is my distinct honor to commend this book to you, dear reader. I hope you are ready for an enriching journey. My beloved friend David has written a beautiful tribute to his valiant son Caleb, a powerfully honest psalm to his God and what will prove to be an unparalleled blessing to you.

 

With the remarkable detail of a medical journal, the visceral passion of a loving father and the flourish that is uniquely David Ingerson, he invites you to taste the very real and intimate experiences of life and death, faith and doubt, hope and sorrow. 

I am tempted to tell you that you will enjoy the trip, but more than that, you will be enriched. Read it with relish. You will empathize with David and Kathy, you will wonder at their God and you will most certainly come to love their Caleb.

 

We knew the “fighter” in the middle season of his fight. He graced our home and our church family. He warmed us with his smile. 

He frightened us with his prospects. And he inspired us with his life.David’s perceptive reflections in the final pages are the dessert after a wonderful meal. Laugh and cry like I did as I read The Caleb Years, then savor the wisdom."

- Rich Bersett, Pastor, Metro-East Christian Fellowship

 

 

 

 

"What can test a parent more than watching their child suffer deeply? What can carry a family through excruciating circumstances except mountains of prayer, incredible friends, and oceans of grace. The Caleb Years is an incredible and inspiring story. I was sobered, saddened and deeply moved. Having been friends with the author and his wife, Kathy for several years, my respect 

for them soared as I read David’s profoundly emotive account of the best of life in the biggest of trials."

- Sam Kendrick, Integrity Men’s Life Coach

 

 

 

 

"What do you do when your entire world suddenly changes? David Ingerson writes a fast action play by play of how he copes with the emotional extremes experienced when his young son faces a prolonged illness from infancy. This is a must read for those going through one of life's storms. For the rest of us it is an inspirational message of faith thatwill prove invaluable should that storm arrive unexpectedly."

- Scott Irwin, Four-term City Councilman, Certified Financial Planner, Wharton School of Business,

  Cannon Honor Graduate

 

 

 

 

"David Ingerson has penned a truly inspirational story about incredible love and incredible faith in the most crushing of circumstances. All parents can relate to the excruciating pain that comes with seeing our children suffer. David and Kathy's story about Caleb’s struggles and victories will resonate with all parents and will take you on an incredible faith journey. This is a must read book that will greatly help you understand and strengthen your faith in the face of the very hardest of times."

- Geoffrey D. Westmoreland - Attorney, husband, and father of two

 

 

 

 

"David and I were stationed together at Scott Air Force Base during Caleb’s fight. “The Caleb Years” is a great story of walking with God through severe times. David pours out his father’s heart in this faithful account of his beloved son’s incredible journey. The roller-coaster of emotions sets the stage on which this unfathomable story unfolds.

 

Reading this fantastic account will surely prepare the reader to face similar trials of life head-on as David describes the challenges he and Kathy encountered while confronting the best and worst of the medical system. A tough but rewarding read for a very tough subject: the enormous trials of a wonderful little boy, his loving parents, and how God saw them through it all."

 -Michael Stocksdale, Lieutenant Colonel (retired), USAF

 

 

 

 

"Riveting. Reflective. Impassioned. The triumphant story of The Caleb Years, delivers an hallowed prescription that drowns out the deafening sounds of heartache and despair by the overwhelming presence and power of God's love. The lessons of trials, testing and tragedy clearly reveal and accentuate a higher purpose for living. The meticulous details of this breathtaking account reveal through a microscopic lens that the time we have should be used to glorify God. This is a must read--especially for those who have or are still experiencing hurts that won't fade."

-Bishop Henry L. Mariner, Jr., Senior Pastor, Hosanna Family Worship Center

 

 

 

 

"This book is deeply moving. Many who have struggled with the unknowable answers to the nagging questions, "Why did this happen?" and "How could God have allowed this tragedy to befall us?" will find hope and help in this story. The Caleb Years is for anyone who has ever found themselves in the midst of fiery trial, publicly uttering words of faith and victory while privately battling fear and doubt, anxiety and agony—a beautiful testimony to God's love and faithfulness as He delivers through the fire, and a witness to His work in and through His children to accomplish His purposes."

-Jeri Mazur, Housewife, Homeschool Classical Educator, Mother of three

 

 

 

 

"We’ve been close friends with the author and his family for many years. While we were familiar with the author’s life challenges resulting from his son Caleb’s medical struggles, we had no clue of the immensely powerful impact these stories would have when strung together in this book. In reading this story we were moved to look at the struggles in our own life with a different set of eyes. Our faith and hope was bolstered as we read. The story of Caleb’s tumultuous birth and life struggles as well as his bright hope and victories reminded us of the Biblical character Job who endured untold suffering and yet overcame. This is an amazing story that will build the faith of anyone who has endured tragedy. This book is a must read and will encourage all of us when facing dark days to understand that there is yet reason for hope."

-Arthur and Gloria Houston, Playwright and Producers of the stage play “We Shall Behold Him”

 

 

 

 

"Gripping. Intruiging. The Caleb Years will grab you, the reader, and make you feel, as I did; that you are a part of the story!"

-Patricia Schneider, Middle School English Grammar Teacher

 

 

 

 

"Hope. That is the single word that best describes what the reader will take away from The Caleb Years. In his heartfelt and unabashedly honest book, David Ingerson offers us Hope that God is indeed present in our most difficult and darkest moments, when the pain we are experiencing overshadows all other realities, when life and God just doesn't make sense. But the Hope that David offers is not only a Hope that God is present, but that God feels our grief along with us and will bring us through to the other side, stronger with a faith and peace that we didn't know possible."

 –Max Davis, Author of The Insanity of Unbelief

 

 

 

 

"At times jarring and raw with emotion, the true passion and love of a father desperately seeking to protect his frail son is evident on every page!  Written with the intensity of a man who has walked through deep pain and sorrow, David Ingerson leads us through to the other side, encouraging us to go on through the despair, to a place of peace and hope.  I've known David since our time as cadets at the Air Force Academy, and this account is forged from the fires of real life...there is honest wisdom here for all.  

After reading The Caleb Years, I'm blessed--once again--to have been a part of the journey!"

-Henry Polczer, Colonel (retired) USAF, fellow Air Force officer, friend, and brother in Christ

 

 

 

 

"What do you do when life doesn’t make sense?  How do you cope with impossible situations?  In The Caleb Years, you will see the true story of real people, who walk through challenges that none of us want to face--and yet find a peace in God that is truly supernatural.  David and Kathy Ingerson were part of Cornerstone Church during such a time in their life in which only God could see them through.  As their pastor during that season I was witness to the hand of God during life's darkest moments.  As you read this heart wrenching and inspiring story you will observe this family demonstrate amazing love and determination for their precious son, Caleb.  I believe it will change you as it has changed me.  You will walk away with a fresh perspective on life, love, family and faith."

 -Mark Lehmann, Senior Pastor, Cornerstone Church, Bowie Maryland

 

 

 

"The Caleb Years is one of the most inspiring books I have had the pleasure of reading, and believe me when I tell you that I have read a lot of books dealing with suffering and grief. Having experienced more than my share of emotional agony and heartache since I lost my daughter in a car accident fifteen years ago, I felt a strong connection to David's story. Many lives will be touched by reading this wonderful book. David did an amazing job chronicling Caleb’s journey. Although I didn’t know Caleb, after reading this story I feel as if I do. I found myself on this emotional roller coaster, both rejoicing and crying. It’s a story of love, faith and trust. Listening to the voice of God and trusting in His Word. After every storm, there is a rainbow."

-Tracy C. Hester, Bank Branch Manager, Mother of two

 

 

 

"This is a riveting, transparent, first-person account of a father’s struggle to understand a loving, sovereign God, while caring for his young son afflicted from birth with several severe medical challenges.  You will agonize with David and his wife, Kathy, as they face crisis after crisis and walk a harrowing path they could never have imagined.  Those dealing with similar hardships, and all who face seemingly insurmountable obstacles in their life will find this book uplifting, encouraging, and inspiring."

-Rob Woodruff, Colonel, USAF (retired), former Officer’s Christian Fellowship staff representative at the U.S. Air Force Academy

 

 

 

"Wow! This is an incredible and impressive story that every father must read! You will be drawn into this true test of a father's faith,

as I was."

            -Rod Pilgreen, President Pilgreen Wealth and Management, Investment broker

 

 

 

 

"The Caleb Years is gripping.  I couldn't put it down.  I was flooded with emotions as I walked, ran and pushed with the author and his family each step of Caleb's struggles.  I identified with the author in so many areas and heard the cry of his heart echo deep within mine bringing forth many parallel memories. Although it is filled with great pain, in the end it is a book of hope! As I read the book I felt as though I had the privileged of having held Caleb along with his parents and having shared in their hearts’ cry."

-Nancy McGreer, Homemaker mother of 4, Nanna of 11

 

 

 

"When pain comes calling, we tend to shrink back and only tell of the victories. But I’m thankful that David lets us walk with him from within their raw and challenging Caleb Years!  As you read this journey, you’ll ache, cry, wince, laugh and ultimately rejoice in God’s grace. You’ll learn practical ways to grow, survive and minister during life’s challenges. In the end, David wisely leaves the mysteries of God’s ways mysterious and reminds us to trust our loving Father."

-Jay Wesley Dawson, Founder Crossover International, an international ministry discipling men and training pastors in the US, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda

 

 

 

"Reading about Caleb's "normal" life and the seemingly insurmountable medical odds makes our friend David Ingerson's book all the more surreal. How could a child so riddled with congenital anomalies be so beautiful and whole? How could a father and mother who researched and understood the medical sequelae cope with such frequent suffering of an adorable son? But God!  Their lives intertwined with grief, teach us to live on and face each day with the assurance of a hope filled future."

-Sapna S. McManus, MD

 

 

 

"Parents’ love for their children has no limits. Capturing Caleb’s life, this story vividly depicts his parents’ unconditional love enduring all. Faith and commitment to our children like this author and his wife demonstrate exemplify perseverance no reason can match. As you read you’ll find yourself cheering for these parents and will be inspired to likewise stand for your own children, against any foe--even when all seems lost.”

 

-Elvir Mandzukic, M Ed

 

 

 

 







 

Foreword

Richard Exley, D.D.

Author of “When You Lose Someone You Love”

 

 

When David Ingerson emailed me the manuscript for “The Caleb Years” I immediately downloaded it, but didn’t open it for several days. Having been a published author and a public speaker for a number of years, it wasn’t unusually for me to receive a prepublication manuscript seeking an endorsement or critique. “The Caleb Years” manuscript was different in that I knew and respected David. He and Kathy (his wife) were members of the congregation where I served and friends of mine. Still my schedule was full and a couple of weeks slipped by before I found time to open the file. 

 

    Since this was David’s first book I didn’t know what to expect. I knew he was a man of many talents –-a graduate of the US Air Force Academy, a pilot, a retired Air Force officer, and a successful business man, but that hardly qualified him to be a writer. Determining to keep my expectations in check, I began reading. To my surprise, I found David to be an unusually gifted writer. His attention to detail was amazing. His ability to share intimate information regarding Caleb’s condition was emotionally wrenching without being maudlin. He captured Caleb’s ebullient personality, providing snapshots of the child that glowed like a light in a dark place. I often found myself laughing through my tears. The tension between hope and despair, faith and fear, was so real I felt like I was living it with David and Kathy. 

 

    Having said that let me say that “The Caleb Years,” is no easy read. There’s too much pain and suffering for that; the grief is too raw. Yet, when I finished reading it I was filled with a painful hope and a stronger faith than I had known heretofore. David and Kathy had walked through the valley of the shadow of death; they had experienced the unspeakable, without being destroyed. They had suffered, even died a little, each time they learned another devastating detail regarding Caleb’s medical conditions, yet their faith remained strong. And when, against all odds, it seemed faith and medicine prevailed their joy was cautiously optimistic. Unfortunately, it was short-lived as they were blindsided yet again. A tainted blood transfusion left Caleb with a full-blown HIV infection, a condition that they feared would eventually take his life. Now they faced a new temptation – they were tempted with anger toward a blood donor and medical system whose carelessness had sentenced their son to the very real possibility of a premature death. Once again their faith sustained them and they emerged from that experience, not bitter persons, but better persons.

 

    If you are looking for pat answers “The Caleb Years” is not for you. David and Kathy have no easy answers because there aren’t any. Caleb’s suffering is not a riddle to be solved, but a mystery to be entrusted to the wisdom of a loving God. What they offer is a faith that has been tested by fire, one that has been shaped on the hard anvil of life, one that has sustained them through all the anguish and grief of watching their son suffer so greatly.

 

Yet for all of that “The Caleb Years” is essentially a book of hope. If you are walking through a dark place in your life this is the book for you. God enabled David and Kathy to find joy in the most difficult times; and the things they learned will guide you through the darkest night. He sustained them even when grief made it impossible for them to sense His nearness; and surely, He will do the same for you. They learned to trust His heart even when they couldn’t understand His ways--and with their help, you can too.

 

Thank you, David, for reliving the Caleb years in order to bring us words of wisdom, and more importantly, words of life. I know I speak, not only for myself, but for countless others as well when I say we are indebted to you. You have shown us how to live with unspeakable loss without losing our faith. And you have shown us how to find hope even when it seems all hope is gone.