Friday, February 27, 2009

Tears of Joy

In chapter 32 and till the end I have tears streaming down my face as I read through it. Yes I am a crier! We see Paul and Miriam now married but still arguing over Angel. And we get to see the beauty of Angel accepting Christ into her life. Now Angel is trying to figure out where she goes from here. Susanna shows her a great way she keeps up with her prayers in the hatbox and I think that it is good advice for us too. Or you can keep a prayer journal as you give things over to God and make notes when they have been answered. Angel’s prayers for what to do with her life are soon answered as she realizes her calling is to help other prostitutes leave that kind of life once and for all. I know we all have dreams of things we want to do with our lives but God has his plans too and we just need to learn to be patient sometimes.

In Chapter 33, Paul is going to find Angel. He finds her and finally is able to let go of all his hate and let God heal him as he finds out the truth about Angel. He lets Angel know about Miriam and him and all that has been going on back at home. They get everything out in the open and Paul is able to forgive her and himself for their past together. I cry with Paul and Angel as they get everything out in the open and God heals their wounds. And I am bursting with joy at the end when Angel tells Susanna that she is going home. I have another question from for this part: What did you think when Angel forgave Paul? Has someone hurt or mistreated you as Paul did Angel? Read Matthew 6:12–15; Luke 6:37; and Colossians 3:13. In light of these Scriptures, how important is it that we be willing to forgive? How can we take steps to forgive, especially if a hurt is long-standing?

I cried the first time reading this book and thought surely I will be fine the second time but in this last chapter and through the prologue I am still crying. Haha! I wonder if I will cry the next time I read this book? Hmm. We come to the end of this wonderful story with Angel returning to Michael. It is so beautiful the way she comes to him shedding her clothing along with all her past. He accepts her graciously right back into his arms. She finally reveals to Michael her true name, Sarah. I think that this touches Michael more than anything at this moment of her coming back just by her telling him this he knows that she is healed. I thought it was interesting the way Michael catches on quickly when he finds out Sarah’s name and what it means in the bible. I would love to read all about Sarah telling Michael what has happened to her but I already know how he would react. He would be overcome with thankfulness to God and love for her. I appreciate how the author gave us the prologue at the end of the story so that we can see what happened to all our beloved characters. What a blessing for Sarah and Michael to be able to have children of their own after all.

I especially like the ending of the last chapter which sums up what this book is all about: “Love the Lord your God, and love one another. Love one another as he loves. Love with strength and purpose and passion and no matter what comes against you. Don’t weaken. Stand against the darkness, and love. That’s the way back into Eden. That’s the way back to life.” What a wonderful reminder of the redeeming love God has for each and every one of us. I know from feedback that most of you enjoyed the book. And I know that it will be hard to find something to top it for a little while but please give other books you read next a chance! Haha! Remember as great as this book is, it’s still not the word of God. Go back to your Bible and read the book of Hosea and watch it come alive in your heart.

To see a full list of the questions from follow this link:
There are about 5 more questions that I didn’t post on here that you may want to ponder over since you have finished the book now. Hopefully in the future we will be able to find some books similar to this one. I pray you enjoyed your time reading and that it touched your heart as you were reminded of the love God has for you.

I look forward to our 2nd meeting tomorrow morning. I know we have had a tremendous response in those of you that have read the book and those trying to read it! I know several of you who can't make it to the meeting but please post comments on the blog if you completed it so others may know how you felt about it. We will have another raffle for March’s book as well as door prizes again. I hope you can make it. Bring a friend! Thank you to all of you who read the book and made comments throughout the month. I appreciate your encouragement. See you tomorrow!

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