If asked to describe our best friends, we’d no doubt call them “amazing” for always helping us in our darkest hours. And for Dolly Parton, this sentiment couldn’t be more true. In fact, she could even describe her closest companion’s enduring support as supernatural!
In the new issue of Simple Grace, an inspirational monthly magazine, Dolly Parton opens up for a heartfelt interview to share how her amazing relationship with God helped her through the most difficult moments in her life.
“God is my best buddy,” Dolly told Simple Grace with a burst of her signature joy-filled laughter. “I grew up in a faith-based family. I’ve always loved Him. I’m 71 now, and every day I thank God for letting me see another day.”
One of the biggest influences on Dolly’s faith was her mother, Avie Lee, who taught her the value of falling on her knees. Dolly recalls: “Mama would say to trust God and pray when you didn’t know what to do.”
See Dolly Parton through the years!
Growing up in the Tennessee Smoky Mountains, Dolly was the fourth of 12 children in a close-knit Christian family (tales of which inspired the hit television movies Coat of Many Colors in 2015 and Christmas of Many Colors in 2016). Although her parents were able to imbue Dolly and her siblings with faith, laughter and love, they were very poor and couldn’t always protect the family from hardship and hurt.
MUST-SEE: Dolly Parton Is in Mourning
When Dolly was nine years old, she experienced one of the most painful times in her life when her baby brother, Larry, died when he was just four days old. “Losing my baby brother was my first encounter with death and the deepest hurt I’ve ever known,” Dolly told Simple Grace. “It was my first true feeling of loss and of questioning God. I remember asking, ‘God, Why are you doing this?’
She learned it takes a lifetime to understand that pain and loss are a part of life, a part of loving others.
“It’s a hard lesson, because we love our families and our babies and our pets, and you can’t lose anything that you love with all your being and it not break your heart,” Dolly said. “Bad things happen, loss happens, but I don’t think God causes them to happen. I think He’s there to comfort us and help us through it.”
via Simple Grace
Dolly has found that leaning on Him in times of suffering and remembering everything happens for a reason helps us become fearless to love and frees us to love more deeply. “You never know how God works,” she told Simple Grace, smiling. “You just have to have faith and know that it’s going to be alright.”
For the full interview with Dolly, pick up the new issue of Simple Grace, on stands now!
Next: Check out pictures of Dolly Parton when she was young.
Dolly Parton Young Short Hair
Dolly Parton didn't always have an over-the-top look. How odd it is to see the star without her signature big hair!
Dolly Parton Young Shy
And how odd it is to see her looking--dare we say--a little shy.
Dolly Parton Young Smile
Just about the only recognizable trait in this photo is her big smile. Some things never change.
Dolly Parton Young Sweater
Another thing that never changes is the proof Dolly could wear anything and bring it to life.
Dolly Parton Young Confidence
You can see a bit of Dolly's enviable confidence starting to shine through here.
Dolly Parton Young High School
Though her wardrobe was totally different back in high school, we think she still rocked it.
Dolly Parton Young Glamour
Here, she looks like an 80s rocker, albeit a very glamorous one.
Dolly Parton Young Destined
Now this is the face of someone who knows she's destined to become a huge star.
Dolly Parton Young Model
She looks like she could be a model in a catalogue here. We're sure any clothes she wore would sell out.
Dolly Parton Young Pose
After all, she always had it in her to work it.
Dolly Parton Young Singer
Even before the flashy persona, she knew what she was destined to do.
Dolly Parton Young Strut
And she always knew how to strike a pose!