As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Kim Cash Tate explores Psalm 103:12 as she takes her readers down the path to God’s forgiveness and reconciliation in her newest novel, Cherished. Readers will discover that God can still use them in spite of their worst choices. And He doesn’t just forgive them, but they are truly cherished!
Tate’s story will show her readers how God can bring beauty from ashes. She has a unique way of weaving her characters’ lives together, leading back to one great point—God’s tremendous mercy and grace. In the words of one of her characters, “I wasn’t sure what to expect. I felt like it would take a while to work my way back into God’s good graces, but it was like…”—she flung wide her arms—“…He just embraced me.” We too can be embraced by the same great love when we learn that true forgiveness for ALL of our sins is right before us.
Growing up in Saint Louis, Kelli London dreamed of becoming a songwriter and glorifying God with her songs of praise. But after falling into sin, she walks away from her dreams. Heather Anderson’s life has spun out of control—first an affair with a married man and then a one-night stand with the drummer of a popular Christian band. Broken and alone, she discovers the only one who can save her. Brian Howard grew up as a science geek. But after making the worst mistake of his life after high school, he finds forgiveness in Christ and is being led down a completely different path. Now he must choose whether to continue pursuing his PhD in biochemistry or to become a full time Christian rapper.
While the book started off a touch slow for me it really started to draw me once the character of Kelli moves back to Saint Louis and all the characters start coming into play in the story. It really is a story that really points out how God cherishes us and wants to forgive us. It really brings home that no matter what we have done, what wrong choices we have made, God is ready and waiting to forgive and wants us to repent so that He can start healing our hearts and bring us into the life He wants for us. I really liked how the author did not just make a pat story where everything goes just fine for everyone once they've repented but that the characters did have some tough stuff to deal with even after they had repented and turned to God as did the characters who had to deal with the fall out of someone else's sins. It showed how each had to turn to God for grace to walk through it. Granted it did seem to all wrap up nicely by the end but in reality the novel would have to be a huge tome if that part of the story is dragged out.
The story also made me think of the church's reactions (read: my reactions) to others and forgiveness. It brought up some interesting aspects and made me really look into my own heart. Why do we find it hard sometimes to forgive people their sins even when we believe in God's forgiveness and we, ourselves, have been forgiven? When more than one person is involved in the sin, why do we sometimes receive one person back "into the fold" but still hold it above the other person's head? Why if we believe that" God throws our sins as far as the east is from the west" do we find it hard to forgive ourselves or others? And why do we make ourselves and others keep "paying" for it?
All in all, I thought it was a great story that made me think, and when a novel can entertain me and yet cause me to think and search my own heart, that makes it a very worthwhile read.
Thanks to the B&B Media Group for providing the book free for my review. All the opinions expressed are my own.