The Power To Change Lives
Into The Room by Steven Rogers is a powerful contemporary Christian novel that completely consumed me. It was utterly brilliant as I witnessed dying to self and living for Jesus.
We meet a man whose lifestyle sees him spiraling downwards. He is an alcoholic with no incentive to stop stop as“When I stop drinking, I feel worthless.” He doesn’t like himself and feels powerless. “I’ve created a person I hate, supported by a lifestyle I refuse to abandon.” Alcohol has been in charge since he was fifteen years old.
The reader joins a trip to the Holy Land to walk in the footsteps of Jesus. It is twelve days with the potential to change a life forever. Each day presents an opportunity to draw closer to God.
We witness the love of Jesus for the hurting and the broken, as it shines through the lives of others. As the leading man fights his personal demons, he is not alone. “No matter how far away I go, I can’t get away from myself.” Something needs to change.
The character needs Jesus but He believes he is too bad for God. “Even if He’s there, God couldn’t possibly have room for me.” God has room for everyone. He asks us to come as we are and He will transform us from the inside out. But first we must ask Him into our lives.
There is the theme of forgiveness. We are already forgiven by God, now we must forgive ourselves.
Prayer is important. Prayer is talking to God. “Lots of prayers are distressed pleas.” God longs to answer the cries of our heart.
Watching the birth of a new Christian is a beautiful thing. We see the old life stripped away and a new life put on.
The Stars In April by Peggy Wirgau is a powerful YA novel surrounding the maiden voyage of the Titanic. The story is grounded in fact being set around twelve year old Ruth Becker and her family. It is a novel that needs to be read as we witness the love, bravery and courage of many.
The action is set from March 1912 to early April 1912 as the Becker family (minus Ruth’s father) journey from India to America in search of medical help for two year old Richard.
The story is seen through the eyes of Ruth. We ‘hear’ the events in the first person as we ‘journey’ on a train to the coast, a ship to Southampton and the ill-fated Titanic. We become intimately acquainted with the lively per-teen. We empathise with her feelings as she leaves her beloved India behind.
As with all journeys, Ruth encounters some characters along the way from acrobats to young women to a big-hearted Irish family. Huge personalities encourage Ruth to try new things. Her sense of joi de vivre and adventure is infectious.
Ruth loves deeply and therefore hurts deeply. Her bad mood against her father for deciding to leave India is keenly ‘felt’ by the reader. Even in her anger, Ruth keeps her link with her father alive as she studies the stars alone. “He’d [Papa] told me we would see the same stars even though I was far from home.” The stars unite even though apart.
Based On 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8
Based On 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8
Jesus in me is patient and kind;
Jesus in me does not envy or boast;
Jesus in me is not arrogant or rude.
Jesus in me does not insist on my own way;
Jesus in me is not irritable or resentful;
Jesus in me does not rejoice at wrong-doing, but rejoices with the truth.
Undercurrent Of Secrets by Rachel Scott McDaniel is a delightful dual timeline novel and part of the Doors To The Past series.
A hundred year old steamboat unites the two time periods which alternate between chapters.
There are the parallel themes of identity, and love for the steamboat and water. In present day the leading characters search for the identity of the lady in half an old photo, known simply as ‘Hattie.’
Our true identity is to be found in our hearts. We are children of the King and we are loved. True love transcends all our circumstances.