Do Not Worry Or Be Afraid
The Writing Desk by Rachel Hauck is the most wonderful contemporary and historical Christian romance. It is a perfect read, one that will warm your heart and soul. It leaves you feeling good and with a smile on your face as you celebrate God’s goodness and faithfulness.
The novel explores how God desires a relationship with us all. Even when we do not know Him or do not acknowledge Him, He is present in our lives, speaking into them. It’s just that we fail to recognise His voice.
Going to church does not necessarily mean knowing God. “She attended church only to be seen by people, not God.” Church in the early twentieth century (and sometimes today) could be seen as a status symbol. It was never God’s intention for this to be so. The church is the people – people who live for God. “He kept his faith quiet and simple.” By viewing one’s example of living out a Christian life, others will be drawn to Jesus.
The novel is about families. There are all sorts of families – split families, matriarch families and families who welcome others with their open house policy. “The Sullivans were not lawn people. They were people people.” The reader ‘feels’ welcome in their company. The Sullivans are the church in action.
Early twentieth century life was very much class based. People did not marry for love. Marriages were business deals. “Country and duty trump any man’s heart.” Daughters were sold to the highest bidder. Old estates were propped up by new money. A love match was discouraged. “She was playing her part Doing what society… expected.” Society had underwritten rules that were ignored at your peril. No one wanted to be a social pariah.
The novel is one of two halves – modern day and 1902. They are linked by heritage and the writing desk. The characters are wonderfully drawn with strong female heroines and kind supporting men. The reader is attracted to them all. The exchange of dialogue is wonderful to behold. It was exceedingly witty at times as there were verbal volleys backwards and forwards.
There was the theme of loss. “In her grief, she’d stumbled upon… writing.” Loss never diminishes. We just learn how to cope.
There was the theme of treasure. “If you think your greatest fortune is the size of your bank account, you’ve miscalculated.” Some things are priceless – the love of others and the love of God.
Dreams are important. “Never let anyone steal your dreams.” Dreams fulfilled bring contentment. Dreams can spur us on through life.
Guilt and regret are bedfellows with forgiveness. “I don’t visit regret often because there’s nothing I can do about it.” Regrets are a waste of energy. Learn from the past and move on. Forgive where we need to forgive.
The Writing Desk was a real gem of a novel. All Rachel Hauck’s novels are feel-good reads where the reader can escape for a few hours. They are also grounded in God. The reader learns lessons, along with the characters.
A totally wonderful read. Rachel Hauck has done it again.
I received this book for free. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.