Letters from My Father’s Murderer Book Review

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

Letters from My Father’s Murderer by Laurie A. Coombs is a journey of forgiveness and redemption. Not just for the man who murdered Laurie’s father, but for Laurie as well.

In her preface Laurie says her book is about redemption. It is the story of two enemies willing to trust God enough to walk down a path neither of them wanted to enter. But a path they entered nonetheless.

When Laurie realized her unresolved anger had turned to bitterness and that true healing can only come from God, she knew it was time to forgive her father’s murderer.

Letters from My Father’s Murderer relates the author’s journey toward forgiveness and healing in an honest and open way that shows forgiveness is messy and in this case, took years to accomplish.

This book is more than a journal of events on the road to redemption for Laurie and Anthony. It is a book for each of us who needs to forgive and be forgiven.

This book drew me in from the beginning and kept me turning pages until the end. The progression through the book shows changing attitudes. It shows trust building. It shows a total dependence on God developing.

It also shows that while we can’t always understand why things happen the way they do, we can see God working in the middle of the mess if we are open to him.

As Laurie writes, “I don’t think God ever intends blessings to stop with those he blesses– blessings are intended to flow through every one of us to others.”

I highly recommend Letters from My Father’s Murderer for everyone who has ever needed to be forgiven, or who needs to forgive.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Leave a comment below. If you think others would appreciate reading this please share it through the social media buttons.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Important Enough

In a time in history when women had very little value in society, and were considered property of their fathers and husbands, the book of Matthew included the names of five woman important enough to be recorded in Jesus’ genealogy.

Tamar. A Gentile, whose desire to be part of God’s people and share in the promise given to Judah, pushed her to resort to trickery to have her father-in-law honor his promise to her. (Genesis 38)

Rahab. A Gentile prostitute living in Jericho, who believed in the God who led his people out of Egypt, was saved when she helped two Israelite spies escape. (Joshua 2)

Ruth. Another Gentile. A woman from Moab who chose to identify herself with God’s people when she accompanied her mother-in-law, Naomi, to Bethlehem after both were widowed. (Ruth)

Bathsheba. Dead Uriah’s wife. (2 Samuel 11)

Mary. The virgin chosen to carry within her womb the Son of God. Of whom was born Jesus. (Luke 1)

Five women. Five different backgrounds. Five different stories. Different personal lives. Different status. Different nationality. It didn’t matter to God. He used each of them, regardless. God’s grace crossed man-made boundaries. It crossed sins. It crossed loss.

What did each woman have? Faith. Faith in a God bigger than themselves. Faith in a God who took their brokenness and brought something wonderful out of it. Faith in a God who deals in redemption and grace. Faith in a God who is faithful even when we are not. Faith in a God who keeps his promises even when we do not.

God’s still in the business of restoration, redemption, and grace. He still uses broken and battered people to achieve his goals. He still loves unconditionally even when we may not be so lovable at times.

Feeling broken, cracked, rejected, defeated?

Just as God used these five women, he can use us. We can all be redeemed, and put back together through his grace. All we have to do is have faith enough to say yes to God, and his son, Jesus Christ.

Judah was the father of Perez and Zerah (whose mother was Tamar). Salmon was the father of Boaz (whose mother was Rahab). Boaz was the father of Obed (whose mother was Ruth). Obed was the father of Jesse. Jesse was the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon (whose mother was Bathsheba, the widow of Uriah). Jacob was the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Mary gave birth to Jesus, who is called the Messiah. Matthew 1:3, 5-6, 16

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Job Knew Something We Sometimes Forget

I received word July 10, 2013, an article I wrote for Today’s Christian Woman, “Letting Go” went live on TodaysChristianWoman.com’s ParentConnect site.

The post I wrote July 9 talked about opportunities God gives us to trust him. “Letting Go” tells of an opportunity God gave me to trust him, over 30 years ago. Today’s Christian Woman has asked me to spread the word about the article, so that’s what I’m doing. 😉

If someone mentions the name, Job, from the Old Testament, what’s the first thing we usually think of?

Patience.

But I would like to submit to you, that the Book of Job is sooo much more than merely a beautifully written, poetic story about exhibiting patience, and enduring troubles.

Have you spent much time considering Job’s friends? I use the term, friends, loosely here. I know I’ve had people like them in my life before. Still do.

Friends who tell us our troubles are all our fault. Even when we know for a fact, we haven’t done a thing to deserve what is happening. Or who tell us how stupid we were/are.

Friends who are ready to lecture and give advice, but who haven’t a clue what they are talking about. They aren’t the ones who went through the experience.

When, all the time, what we really need is a true friend. A friend who will sit with us in the ash heap, among the pottery shards of our life. Fortunately, I do have a couple of those. Thank you, Jesus.

And then there is Job’s Curse God and die, wife. Oh. There’s someone I’d like in my life. Not.

Near the very end of the Book of Job, (39-41) God tells Job to brace himself like a man. Then God starts questioning Job.

Where were you when I made the earth’s foundation? Who shut the doors to keep the sea

in when it broke through and was born? Where were you when I said to the sea, ‘you may come this far, but no farther’? Have you ever ordered the morning to begin, or shown the dawn where its place was? Tell me if you know all these things.

Job, wisely, admitted he had no answers to the Almighty’s questions.

But, before Job’s questioning by God, Job did know something we sometimes forget, even being this side of Calvary.

I know that my Redeemer lives, and in the end he will stand upon the earth. Even after my skin has been destroyed in my flesh I will see God. I will see him myself; I will see him with my very own eyes. How my heart wants that to happen!

Job 19:25-27 

The story of Job is not just a story of patience and suffering. It is a story of hope. Hope in a risen Savior. Hope in a Redeemer. Hope in Jesus Christ as LORD. It is a story that should give us hope, even in the midst of our worst trials and troubles.

This is the story of a man who lived in the days of the old and ancient before Jesus walked this earth. A man who knew the truth. A man who knew his, and our, yours, and my, Redeemer lives!

Going through some tough stuff in your life? Hold onto the hope we have in Jesus as our LORD, Savior and Redeemer.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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