About us


Hope Is My Anchor was inspired by my husband Dave's disability. In June of 2000 he had to leave his position as children's pastor because of memory loss, dizziness, fatigue, joint pain, and chemical sensitivities, among other symptoms.We eventually learned that Dave has late-stage Lyme disease, treatment takes years, and his prognosis was uncertain.

What can I depend on now? I wondered. Where do we turn when circumstances seem to deny God's love, acceptance, and delight in us? What do we do when this world doesn't seem to offer any hope?

In the Bible, the book of Hebrews speaks of a "better hope," one "by which we draw near to God." "We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure." (Heb. 7:19, 6:19)

I know what it is to struggle, to fear, to be filled with anger--and I know what it means to submit these to God and continue to walk with Him. Our hope is that you too can be encouraged to walk with God through whatever life circumstance you are facing. Grab a cup of coffee (or some chocolate!) and join us.

God bless, Dave and Merry Marinello



You can read more about our journey here:




You can also read Merry's articles:

originally published by Christianity Today in their magazine Marriage Partnership, now called Kyria:

  • Testing Our Vows I thought I would have my best friend forever. Now I wasn't so sure. Third place winner for Higher Goals in Christian Journalism, 2005.
  • Lost in Translation: When communication broke down, Dave and Merry Marinello had to learn a new language.
  • Simple Gifts: What cereal boxes and straightened shoes taught me about love

About Our Family:

Dave has a Masters of Religious Education from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and was active in children's and youth ministry for 17 years before going on disability. (On the day this picture was taken, he was feeling pretty good, and mounted a surprise Nerf attack on our son!) He contracted Lyme Disease during his college years in Wisconsin, but was undiagnosed for 15 years. In June of 2000, he became disabled. He loves the outdoors, teaching, and helping people, and longs to return to teaching adult Sunday School. And he's a great father to our children! 


 Merry is a homeschooling mom to their two children, Zachary (16) and Anna (14), and caregiver and wife to Dave for 23 wonderful (and sometimes quite intense) years. Her hobbies include writing, tormenting her children with terrible puns, reading, going out for ice cream with friends, chatting on homeschool boards, working for All About Learning Press, playing board games, and occasional Nerf gun wars. She has a B.A. in English and has been published in several magazines including Marriage Partnership, Just Between Us, Christian Reader, Cornerstone, and Virtue. Her article Testing Our Vows earned a Third Place Higher Goals in Christian Journalism Award from the Evangelical Press Association (2005, First-Person Article category). Check out her book, Invisible Illness, Visible God, which has received positive reviews from Shelly Esser (Just Between Us Magazine) and Steve Demme (Math-U-See and Building Faith Families), and won a Bronze Medal in the 2014 Illumination Book Awards. Parents might want to check out the Happy Hands poster.


Zach can usually be found displaying his latest Lego creation (with or without robotic features) or playing Bakugon, Pokemon, or something on his 3DS. He also enjoys playing guitar, reading and studying Japanese, and has a love-hate relationship with geometry (I was surprised when it showed up as a favorite on his end-of-the-year evaluation, but he liked the logic challenge of doing proofs).  He's also learning to drive!


Anna loves singing, playing the violin, dolls, creating, and science. She was Rapunzel two years in a row for Halloween (and had a lot of fun making her hair!). She's interested in many areas of science, and has won awards at our yearly science fair for her hot air balloon, "cell city," hovercraft, and solar power projects. She enjoys creating Mi characters for the Wii as much or more than the games themselves, and has not only created her entire family and friends, but all of her favorite TV characters as well.


CONTACT US:  Questions or comments? We'd love to hear from you! Please delete the spaces and replace the parentheses to contact us (we're cutting down on auto-generated spam).

Email:  merrymarinello (at) gmail (dot) com

You can also find us on Facebook.