The Wedding Chapel, wow, another fantastic novel by Rachel Hauck. Everything she writes really impacts and talks to my soul. On the surface it is a beautiful love story, but it is so much more than that.
In The Wedding Chapel Rachel Hauck shows how God always has His hand on our lives. We may not see Him. We may not feel Him, but He is always there. There is so much more to life than what we can see. Life is a spiritual battle, and as Christians we need to immerse ourselves in God’s word daily. Referring to the Bible Sam in the novel says we need to “take a withdrawal and stop trying to make a good life on the devil’s pennies.” The devil is always trying to draw God’s children away from their purpose in life.
Rachel Hauck demonstrates how important a relationship with God is. Her characters know God and recognise that He must be the most important thing in their lives. Taylor, on explaining why she ended a relationship says “I couldn’t hear God’s heart anymore.”
Belonging to God’s family is of utmost importance. Earthly families are important too. They are not just blood families “but anyone who fits into your heart.”
The theme of fathers runs throughout the novel. Earthly fathers can be a disappointment. God will never be a disappointment. The character of Coach never married, but he has been a father to dozens of youngsters as he coached football since the 1950’s.
Rachel Hauck shows how it is important to speak the truth and not to bottle up things that hurt. Misunderstandings of a situation can lead to years of pain, that if not faced and dealt with, can sour relationships. The blame game is never a good one to play.
The novel alternates between 1949 and early 1950’s to present day. Coach began building a wedding chapel in 1949 but the Korean War interrupted his plans and it lay empty until the present day when he decides to sell it. The wedding chapel is more than just a building. It is a place where, if you listen hard enough, you can hear the heart beat of God.
The theme of love and marriage permeates The Wedding Chapel. Taylor’s family have a history of divorce. Newly married to Jack, she wonders if their marriage will last. Jack too, is the product of a broken marriage and many foster homes. He fears his marriage will not last. He fears the thought of having children as he never had a proper father. He fears being hurt and longs to tell Taylor “I love you” but it always sticks in his throat. Theirs is a marriage of silent assumptions. Rachel Hauck shows how marriage is not an easy romantic ride. When two people join together with all their insecurities, it can make for a very bumpy road.
I always love Rachel Hauck’s books. They are beautifully written and speak straight to your heart. Her characters are always well drawn, and feel like real friends to the reader. I have read many of her novels, so when Corina del Rey, a character from a previous novel was mentioned in passing, my first thought was “oh I know her!” and not “oh she’s a character in a book!”
If you have never read anything by Rachel Hauck before, then The Wedding Chapel is a perfect book to start with. It is such a beautiful novel, with God very much at the heart.
I was given a free copy of this book. All opinions expressed are my own.