I joined a Christian Woman’s Book Club this past summer and have thoroughly enjoyed the experience from the first meeting. I have not often allowed myself the opportunity to read Christian fiction books (or ANY fiction books), as my reading focus has been non-fiction (in a never-ending effort to learn). I am realizing, although a book may be fiction (I remember learning that fiction = false and non-fiction = not false), that doesn’t necessarily mean the book contains no fact. For example, the book I’m currently reading, I, Saul, by Jerry B. Jenkins, is PACKED with fact!
This book contains two stories: one story with characters from Biblical times and one story with characters from present day. In the present day story, the father and son have a complicated relationship, due mostly to the way the father treated his son his entire life. When the son becomes a grown man, his father becomes seriously ill; resulting in the mother’s decision to share “secrets” of her husband’s life with their son.
Once details of the father’s story are shared with his son, he’s provided clarity and an understanding of his father’s misdirected anger at him; due to his own painful past. The reason I know this to be fact is due to the movie I watched last week (Ragamuffin) and my own childhood. Please don’t get me wrong, my father adored me and worked hard every day of his life to provide for me. But I still remember feeling extremely nervous whenever he would ask me to help him by getting something for him (which I would never be able to find) or taking care of something that belonged to him or was expensive or valuable (which I would inevitably break or lose). I always tried SO HARD to please him and frequently felt I let him down. My dad never insinuated I let him down, but his stern discipline, matched with my inability to do anything right, led me to believe I was a failure and a disappointment to him.
With my father passing away when I was 18 years old, I was never given an opportunity to tell him how I felt (giving him a chance to correct my misinterpretation of what happened). But I’m thankful to have had an opportunity to work through my confusion and know without a doubt he adored me.
I would like EVERY FATHER to realize the extremely fragile heart and soul of his children and to choose his words VERY wisely and carefully. Some words that are spoken can not be taken back (even though tried).